Gray Drake Logo - image


Gray Drake Newsletter Volume II



Summer 2008



  • With high gas prices, the wilderness, woods and waters of Newaygo County can provide the same fishing opportunities as the further northern destinations
  • The Muskegon and its tributaries are stocked with over 200,000 Browns and Rainbow Trout, with some having excellent natural reproduction. Some Selective feeding Trout are approaching the mid 20 inch range!


Will and his fish - image



Deur's Brown Trout - image


Late May and June, so far on the Muskegon River, has been a huge eye opener! The "Big" story is the! They are back to or exceeding record proportions. While many other Trout rivers and streams across the state and country are going the other way - with diminishing insect varieties and hatch intensities - the Muskegon is getting more fertile by the year.

The big surprise is the massive caddis hatches are back. Blizzard hatches of caddis were seen this spring - both hydropsyche and micro blacks - from Hardy Dam to the lower Muskegon River. In addition, the Gray Drake Mayflies have been as thick as ever in the past fifteen years. Along with excellent Sulphur, Isonychia, Stonefly and Blue-winged Olive Mayflies; the Trout are growing fat and happy feeding on the surface.

Gray Dun photo by John Miller - image
Gray Dun photo by John Miller

For the rest of the summer, Olives, Cahills, Tricos and Flying ants, along with small Olive Caddis will dominate. The Muskegon is a dry fly hatch matchers dream come true!

We still have a few select dates available for this summer. We hope you can join us!


Planning a Family Getaway - or a Small Business Retreat?


The Gray Drake Lodge may be the Way To Go!

Women dining aat Gray Drake - imageInterior of Gray Drake Lodge - image
  Gray Drake Lodge view from river - image  

The abundance of Trout will make the novice angler or children have constant action and strengthen their confidence in their newly acquired skills. For the seasonal fly fisher, the rivers large Brown and Rainbow Trout on the surface, or chasing a streamer, will provide you with a highly selective sporting challenge. Couple this with a north woods setting, a gourmet chef and masseur, hot-tubbing under the stars and soon your hectic, fast paced day-to-day lifestyle will melt away.

Nikkia and Matt with her fish - image

Excellent golf courses, restaurants, kayaking and canoeing, antique shopping, and nature trails will take up your non-fishing time. The nearby museums of Grand Rapids and Muskegon along with the pristine beaches of the Lake Michigan Shoreline, your whole family and group will get the most out of the outdoor experience.






With air travel and long distance driving costs going through the roof, the Gray Drake is an excellent choice, closer to home. Families, relatives and friends can enjoy a day in the river catching Trout, Salmon, Steelhead, Small mouth -- you name it!

  • Located on some of the most picturesque waters of the River with Trout filled riffles and pools
  • Luxury Lodging and Gourmet Dining
  • Small corporate gatherings and retreats with a plethora of outdoor activities other than fishing

Deur Fishing - image






Gray Drake Fly - image



Hook: Daiichi 1270, curve the shank slightly not to break.

Thread: To match inset color (Gray for Gray Drake)

Tail: Moose mane or Micro-Fibbetts

Body: Stripped Hackle or Peacock quills or Turkey biots (here for Gray Drake two stripped Grizzly Hackles)

Wing: Organza with Hackle

Thorax: Gray Hare's Mask Dubbing - color to suit Mayfly type.


This deadly spinner imitation works for all Mayfly spinner falls. It imitates the shriveled up, curved bent body of a spent and burnt-up Mayfly spinner. The organza wing material (Hareline) has the perfect iridescence of the wing. Stripped quill bodies offer the segmentation a Mayfly spinner has.




Steve Hadley, Consumers Energy Manager for Croton/Hardy Dams has informed us of a new project at Hardy Dam which is taking place this summer. A 4.5 million dollar re-installation of turbine 3 at Hardy will increase the summer cold water outflow three fold and greatly enhance the dissolved oxygen. This will be the chief turbine that will run all summer during temperature stress periods from June through August. Now that's some good dam news!





  Oriental Sweet and Sour Slaw.....what we serve on our guide trips! It's an excellent light and savory salad that goes well with grilled pork, chicken, fish or beef - enjoy! Here is the recipe:

1 head green cabbage finely sliced (can also mix red cabbage)
1 large green bell pepper, finely sliced
1 or 2 red onions, thinly sliced
1 carrot, peeled and grated
1 cup sugar
1 cup distilled white vinegar
3/4 cup vegetable/olive oil
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
caraway seeds

1. Combine cabbage, pepper, onions and carrot. Sprinkle 3/4 cup of the sugar and toss.
2. Over medium heat combine the remaining 1/4 cup sugar with the vinegar, oil, salt and dry mustard. Bring to a boil, stirring often. Pour the boiling sauce over the cabbage mixture and toss well. Sprinkle with caraway seeds. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.

  Oriental Slaw with dinner - image  

Many of our fishing guide trips are for women, families and youth.
We enjoy catering to this growing segment of our business.



  • Families make up 54% of the Gray Drake clientele
  • Women make for the best fly anglers and learners
  • Children (starting from 8 and up) along with young adults out fish even seasoned anglers

There is no reason why the whole family cannot enjoy the natural beauty of the fly fishing experience. We have taught hundreds of young children and women how to fly fish..........our website's pictures tell the story!

We provide all the Orvis tackle, and patient instruction you'll need, to make the art of the fly cast your favorite sport-and we won't forget the snacks and sodas for the younger less patient students!



  • The St. Joseph and Big Manistee rivers are stocked with close to 350,000 summer
    steelhead a year
  • These fish grow to very
    large size. Last year saw some fish approaching 20lbs!
  • They are "bulls in a china" shop when hooked
Summer Skamania Steelhead - image  

If you've never hooked a summer steelhead on the fly, you are missing out on an unforgettable experience! From June thru early September, these massive 3-salt steelhead ascend the St. Joe and Big Manistee. The Muskegon got quite a few strays last year. They can be very aggressive to the fly and put you into your backing instantaneously.

Without doubt, the Skamania Steelhead are the   tarpon of the Great Lakes!

We still have A few prime dates left. Come and join us! You will find that there is something unique about steelheading in a T-shirt!



Dan with his Big Salmon - image

  From September through October, Chinook and Coho Salmon will ascend our rivers in tremendous numbers. On their heels will be the leaping chrome silver beauties - fall Steelhead! Throwing and stripping or swinging large barred Rabbit Tiger Strip Leeches, Comets, Bosses or Hex nymphs and eggs, a world class Salmon or Steelhead is yours for the taking!  
  • Western Michigan's
    Lake Michigan Tributaries provide in excess of 7 million Wild Salmon and Steelhead Smolts through natural reproduction.

  • Catching a 20 lb plus Pacific Salmon on a fly rod is a reality - with double-digit Hook-ups




June 7th - Orvis, Indianapolis. IN

June 14th - Orvis, Dayton, OH

June 21st - Chicago Fly Fishing Outfitters, Chicago,

Also, look for Matt's articles and a debut piece by Alaskan Tim Van Gessel.





"Surf-side Salmonids. Lake Michigan


"The Neversink"


Gray Drake Logo - image

Matt and Laurie Supinski
Email Us

Gray Drake Lodge
7522 S. Gray Drake Bluff
Newaygo, MI 49337

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