It sounds like the fishing has been slow around here.I just got back from a week-long stay up in NW Michigan,and the bass fishing up there was nothing short of spectacular,but it's always like that in that area.I suppose the cooler water and less pressure are two big reasons.Up there,most people target cold water species such as trout and salmon,very few guys specifically go after bass and walleyes-especially this time of year.If you go into any tackle shop and try to garner a little info regarding bass or walleye,they'll just look at you funny and say nobody has been fishing for them since early August(start of the salmon runs). I took one smallmouth that tipped the scales a bit over 7lbs.,and took several between 3lbs.-5lbs.The three lakes I fish all have channels that go out into Lake Michigan,so the bass population is always constant,plus the fact that myself and the few people that fish bass up there always practice C&R.My buddy on the trip wasn't used to fishing deep,clear water and just couldn't get the "feel" of a pick-up down real good.I told him to get a G.Loomis rod! In 40' water and deeper you need a super sensitive rod to feel the lighter hits.He did catch a largemouth that went 5lbs. right on the nose,from a shallow backwater area off of the Manistee River.He said he's going to mount it,I told him that costs a lot of money and he should wait until he gets something a bit bigger,but he has his mind set on it.I also did real well on the walleyes trolling crawler harness' after dark,and of course I also caught a lot of nuisance pike(still wearing 2 band-aids on my fingers!). Finally,we also had a lot of action with the salmon which is what we went up there for mainly.They're really coming into the Manistee right now,and they're a blast-no doubt.It was a fabulous trip,and I can't wait for the next opportunity to go back.Now I'm ready to get back to fishing around here,I hope some of the shad have died off from my area lakes,think I'll go check it out!