Ontario: Lake of the Woods Muskies
In case you’re a muskie angler, you realize there are solely two certainties. The primary is that the whole lot else is simply bait. The second is that at someday in your life, it’s important to fish Northwestern Ontario’s Lake of the Woods.
It’s becoming, too, that the 1-million-acre physique of candy water (the thirty seventh largest lake on the planet) with its unbelievable maze of 14,000 spruce and pine studded islands and 64,000 miles of spellbinding shoreline, lies smack dab within the centre of the continent.
Speak about being the main target of consideration.
And whereas the waterway hosts an incredible range of 47 totally different fish species together with unparalleled alternatives for walleye, sauger, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, lake trout, northern pike, yellow perch and black crappies …… solely muskies matter.
However, be forewarned, the large toothy critters come at a value.
By the point your journey is over, you can be making an attempt to determine stay right here eternally. I do know as a result of I arrived in 1976 with muskie sticks in hand. And dealing for the Ontario Ministry of Pure Assets, I gained an incredible perception into what I can say with confidence is the best muskie fishery on the planet right this moment.
These are fairly heady phrases contemplating that Northwestern Ontario boasts the best focus of high quality muskie waters on earth, however take into account the details.
Whereas most people take a look at Lake of the Woods and see a single magical physique of water, it really encompasses seven fairly totally different sectors. Why is that this necessary? As a result of every big lake-within-the-lake provides a special muskie fishing expertise.
Within the southern zones, for example, round Nestor Falls, Morson and the Northwest Angle, as much as Monument Bay and Large Island, the water is of course stained and comparatively shallow. Thirty-five toes is deep in these components and you may come throughout loads of muskie attracting weeds.
Over in large Whitefish Bay, alternatively, you will discover many stretches the place the water is over 100 toes deep and so crystal clear you may see a dime glowing on the granite all-time low. And, relying on the time of yr, you will discover the muskies feeding on the lake trout, whitefish and ciscoes with which they share the water.
The north sector of the lake, south of the town of Kenora, the central sector beneath the Barrier Islands, and the world encompassing Shoal Lake provides distinctive habitats and traits considerably in between these two boundaries.
Why it’s so necessary for the muskie angler to know the varied components of the lake is you could match your favourite model of fishing to a selected a part of the lake. So, in case you like casting topwater lures, double-bladed in-line spinners or delicate plastic swimbaits, you’ll find the proper match. You’ll be able to even enterprise to totally different sectors over the course of a day and fish a “new lake” with out ever getting out of the boat.
One more reason Lake of the Woods is the cream of the muskie crop is as a result of you may catch nice numbers of massive fish. Most different muskie lakes are noteworthy for churning out portions of small- and medium-size fish, or for coughing up a number of knee knocking giants. Hardly ever, nonetheless, are you afforded each alternatives. However on the finish of a stellar day on Lake of the Woods, you should have bruises in your physique, and so they will not be from the fish. As a substitute, they’re going to be the marks the place you pinched your self all day to ensure you weren’t dreaming. Nevertheless it not an phantasm.
I’ve had 9 fish days the place the smallest muskie exceeded 20-pounds and the stoutest was effectively over 40-pounds. I launched the largest muskie within the province of Ontario three separate years and my private finest fish, based mostly on the size/girth conversion weighed 57 1/2 kilos.
And do you wish to know one thing else?
The muskie fishing is even higher right this moment, due to the trendy administration and high-quality fishing rules which have been fastidiously crafted by the OMNR working with Muskies Canada, the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters, the Northern Ontario Vacationer Outfitters Affiliation and native anglers. The target was to take the best muskie fishery on the planet and make it surreal. And it labored out splendidly
“If you cannot catch a muskie in Lake of the Woods,” chuckles renown muskie angler, Dick Pearson, “you should be doing one thing fallacious.”
Legendary information, Doug Johnson, alternatively, experiences catching and seeing as many as 35 high quality fish in a single day. And picture being the visitor of Kenora-based information, Darcy Cox, who on virtually his first solid of the season this yr caught a large 52-inch muskie.
“We noticed it on a sand flat in a single foot of water,” says Cox. “The Godzilla-like wake on the observe was epic. The strike on the figure-eight was epic. The struggle was epic. It was a sunny day so we received to look at the entire present from begin to end.”
So, it will possibly’t get any higher than this, can it?
Effectively, it really can whenever you see the range of choices for high quality lodging and advantageous eating. Every part from provincial parks and personal campgrounds, to drive-in resorts and boat-to lodges the place your each want is taken care of and also you’re pampered with plush lodging, maid service, gourmand meals, scorching tubs, each day shore lunches which are to die for, and guides operating model new boats and motors geared up with the most recent sonar.
It’s why Lake of the Woods is the place to go to make your muskie desires come true.
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