I’ll always remember my first fly-in fishing journey to the Northwest Territories. Looking the home windows, as our floatplane circled the lodge on Nice Bear Lake getting ready to land, we had been shocked by the transparency of the water. It was so pure and so clear, even from a few hundred ft up within the air, we may simply see the logs mendacity on the underside of the bay.

Then, we realized: holy smokes, they aren’t logs, they’re lake trout.

It was an early lesson that I’ve subsequently relearned on each journey again. While you fish within the Northwest Territories, you count on the sudden.

It was additionally a becoming introduction to the best freshwater fishing on earth, and to steal a phrase from the basic film, Casablanca, the beginning of a phenomenal relationship.

Certainly, the fishing is just not solely nearly as good at the moment because it was again then, due to a robust catch-and-release ethic promoted by lodge homeowners, friends and the NWT Pure Assets company, it’s higher.

How can it probably get any higher?

Properly, half approach down Kasba Lake, one time, our information swerved the boat rapidly because the water erupted in entrance of us. I believed he was veering to keep away from hitting a submerged reef or floating deadhead. Nope, it was a large lake trout that was sunning itself inches below the water, out in the course of the lake and he did not need to run over it.

I believed he was joking, till a number of extra trophy trout began splashing and cavorting like playful porpoises.

However that’s not the half of it.


A short while later, my associate and I had been trolling half-silver and half-gold Williams Whitefish spoons from which we would eliminated the treble hooks, changing them with barbless singles to which we had skewered five-inch lengthy white curly tail grubs. It’s certainly one of my favourite NWT trolling ways for lake trout as a result of it so completely matches the ciscoes, whitefish, grayling and juvenile lake trout that the giants devour with glee.

As we trolled previous some buddies in one other boat, nevertheless, who had been trolling in the other way, we watched as an enormous lake trout smashed our buddy’s bait and rapidly stripped each inch of line from his spool. I child you not, attempt as he did to tighten the drag and management the beast, the trout emptied his spool of line and left him speechless.

Now, how ironic is that this: my associate felt a success at the exact same time, however from a a lot smaller fish that he reeled into the web with out quite a lot of fuss. That’s once I noticed one thing dangling from his hook. It was the unfastened finish of our pal’s line who had simply been spooled.

I rapidly grabbed the road because it streamed by my fingers and put it between my lips as I rapidly reeled in my lure. Then, I tied the unfastened finish on to my spoon through a triple surgeon’s knot, threw it again over the aspect of the boat and wrestled a greater than 40-pound lake trout into the web.

Like I mentioned, you count on the sudden if you’re fishing within the Northwest Territories.

One other working example and a lesson to the clever.

A few of the absolute best fishing that I’ve ever skilled within the Northwest Territories has come after I had pulled apart my information and requested him if there was wherever on the lake that he had yearned to fish, however hadn’t had the possibility but to discover?

Invariably I’ve been greeted with starry eyes and tales of ghost-like lake trout and gargantuan northern pike, the dimensions that which might chew off your leg.

“So, let’s do it,” I all the time say, and I’ve by no means as soon as been dissatisfied with the choice …. or the outcomes.

Just like the time I popped the query to my information, Cubby, and was regaled with whispered tales of The Dome, a mysterious hidden hotspot on the far finish of the lake, that was allegedly festooned with large lake trout.


Properly, overlook the hype, as a result of The Dome proved to be even higher than its advance billing. It’s the place my buddy, Mark and I landed 20 lake trout weighing between 20 and 40 kilos and watched mammoth fish actually swim out of the highest of a wave and into the air as they chased after our lures.

Are you kidding me?

Actually, the fishing was so outlandish, once we pulled onto the tip of a close-by island to get pleasure from shorelunch – what, you by no means eaten recent fish, cooked over a crackling driftwood campfire – I grabbed a spinning rod from the bow of the boat and made a solid out to deeper water whereas Cubby ready our feast.

On my very first solid, I felt a jolt and hooked a 24-pound lake trout, adopted by far too lots of its hefty brothers and sisters to tally. If it was the primary time I had seen it occur, I’d have mentioned it was a pleasing, unanticipated, unexpected, shock.

However, I used to be fishing within the Northwest Territories, the place I’ve come to count on the sudden.


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