Wolfe Outfitters Welcomes Crystal Mountain Guests

Lisa, Michelle, and Willow off for their fishing adventure with Wolfe Outfitters guide Bear Andrews.

Crystal Mountain recently had a weekend dedicated to its property owners—those families that own condos or rooms at this 4-season resort. Wolfe Outfitters, a joint venture with Crystal Mountain had our formal introduction to the property owners, and we hosted the Fiesta Night cocktail party.

We were fortunate to have a great turnout for the event, with over 200 people having signed up to attend. Wolfe Outfitters had a couple of tables that we set up with various fly boxes, fly tying materials, fly reels, rods, nets, rack cards, banners and, of course, lots of Wolfe Outfitters swag to give away! Decals, Simms thirsty trout bottle opener key-chains with our logo, beer koozies, and some shirts and hats.

We worked with Simms Fishing Products to get our logo onto a few sweet looking shirts and hats as well. The dye-sublimated Ebb-tide shirts, DeYoung artist series shirts, and Solarflex shirts all came out looking awesome. They look really sharp, and should look great on and off the water.

We generated quite a bit of interest from various property owners, getting to know many of them, as we chatted about the resort as well as about fishing! We had 4 of our guides there, plus a few of the resort staff to help answer questions, lend a hand, and even book trips for people.

Our head fly guide, Jeff “Bear” Andrews, did a special fly tying demo, tying up numerous flies in an effortless way that drew quite a crowd of onlookers. Or, it could have been the kilt that he was wearing in honor of the event and the Crystal Mountain owner’s heritage! Either way—kilt or fly tying demonstration—there was quite a crowd.

The last highlight of the evening was a raffle for more free swag and a trip giveaway. Cheers went up as the winners of shirts, hats, fly boxes were announced, but there was a definite tension in the air as everybody awaited the announcement of the lucky guided trip winner. Wouldn’t you know, the winners of the trip were not the many avid anglers in the crowd, but 3 giddy women, who were on a girls getaway weekend together! They were looking for something new to experience together, and were contemplating booking a trip, but decided to enter the raffle first to see if they’d win. Of the huge net-full of raffle entries, who’d have thought!

Making a Case for Winter Steelhead Fishing

During the cold winter months, it’s down right cold, and the motivation to head out of a warm house to go fishing is difficult to say the least. Two of my guide services are still in operation during these cold winter months—Manistee River Salmon Guide Service and Wolfe Outfitters, and we’re happy to brave the cold with our customers. Sure, motivation for us to leave the comfort of our homes and trucks is tough too, but usually once we’re out on the water casting, enjoying the day with our customers, things don’t feel as cold.

Despite the chilly temperatures, the Big Manistee River doesn’t usually freeze over due to its big flow, and there is often fishable water for the beautiful steelhead all winter long. And one of the most enjoyable things about winter steelhead fishing is the relative lack of fishing pressure. It’s not uncommon to go all day without seeing another angler. The quiet solitude of winter fishing is a true joy, and most customers are thrilled to see the river without much other fishing pressure. And the fishing can be absolutely hot, even if the temperatures are cold.

Many a snowy day have we experienced tremendous fishing for steelhead on the Manistee River and other area rivers. Not only does the sight of a chrome steelhead warm the blood, battling these acrobatic fish also gets the body moving, and the adrenaline up. During the dead of winter, steelhead don’t maybe jump as frequently as during the fall, but they still jump and run, thrilling anglers of all ages.

Manistee River Salmon Guide Service is suited with a custom jet sled that can utilize much of the river, searching for active fish. And with my USCG Captain’s license, I can legally fish my customers in the lowest stretches of the river, where some fish tend to hold in the deep, slow pools.

A plus for the Wolfe Outfitters guide service is that it is based out of Crystal Mountain Resort. This makes for a comfortable retreat after a cold winter’s day of fishing. Spa services, a heated pool and a couple of nice restaurants are just some of the more pampering amenities offered by Crystal Mountain Resort. Not to mention that it’s a fantastic ski resort as well! There are lots of ski runs catering to both downhill skiers and groomed runs for cross-country skiers. What a great way to combine either a fishing and skiing trip with the guys, or pile the family into the comfortable rooms for a winter get-away! Crystal Mountain Resort has just about everything on-site, and is done in a first class and stunning fashion. We are proud to have partnered Wolfe Outfitters with a resort like Crystal Mountain Resort.

Just because the weather has turned chilly doesn’t mean that the fishing has cooled down. Come and experience the hot steelhead action that’s available in northern Michigan!

Aaron with a beautiful steelhead hen that we caught while wading.

Winter steelhead action can be downright hot!