In northeastern Michigan near Grayling, the Au Sable River has an 80 mile stretch of blue ribbon trout fishing waters. The river winds through woodlands from the freestone headwaters just north of Fredrick to the end in Lake Huron. There are plenty of small to medium rainbow trout, brown trout and brook trout.
The 13 mile section from Fredrick to Grayling are shallow, gravel bottom with mainly brook trout and a few brown trout. Downstream of Grayling, there is the most popular 9 mile stretch from Burtons Landing to Wakeley Bridge (catch-and-release only). The North Down River Road and South Down River Road parallel both shores in this section. You will find many waders above Stephans Bridge Road and many floaters below.
If you are looking for brown trout, the next section from Wakeley Bridge to McMasters Bridge is for you. The river widens and slow with a sandy bottom. Look for the browns in their deep holes. There are three access points: White Pine Campground, Conners Flat and Rainbow Bend Campground. The prime caddis season is usually from late April through early September.
The Trophy Water section is from the town of Mio to McKinley, about 30 miles downstream from Grayling. This section typically runs about 1,000 cfs and is managed for the growth of very large trout.
Below Foote Dam, the lower Au Sable River heading into Lake Huron is a good steelhead fly fishery, especially when floating since it is pretty wide.
In addition to fly fishing the main Au Sable River, the South Branch of the Au Sable River and the North Branch of the Au Sable River are excellent fly fisheries. Both can be easily waded.
Overall, Au Sable River is the 2nd most popular fly fishing river of all 26 fly fishing spots in Michigan.