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Feisty fish caught from boardwalk

Matt DeYoung • Nov 22, 2017 at 1:00 PM

Billy Simmonds doesn’t deer hunt, but he still takes two weeks off work at the end of November — to go fishing. 

Tuesday morning, Simmonds and Sawyer Rozgowski — both of Spring Lake — were braving the elements along Grand Haven’s boardwalk, jigging for whitefish. 

Rozgowski had already landed four of the feisty fish, which are prized for their tasty fillets. 

Not to be outdone, Simmonds’ rod bent double as he jigged a small spoon near the bottom. After a short battle, he brought a nice whitefish to the surface.

Rozgowski used a long-handled net to dip down into the water and scoop up the fish. 

“A normal day for me is to come out before daylight and fish until noon,” Rozgowski said. “A good day is three (whitefish). It’s a little unique how to get the jig just right. I also caught a laker (lake trout) off the pier the other day.”

Rozgowksi said it’s no secret when the whitefish start running from Lake Michigan up into the Grand River.

“You’ll see a bunch of guys out here,” he said. 

Many anglers fish for whitefish at night, from sundown until midnight. They’re willing to endure the elements because whitefish are among the best tasting fish out there, according to Simmonds. 

“They’re great smoked, and they’re good fried, too,” he said. 

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