We have had the pleasure of fishing from Wikmemikong, ON, on Manitoulin Island in the spring for their trophy rainbow trout that are in literally every bay and feeding on most shorelines, this fast winter covering the 6th Annual Wikwemikong Ice Fishing Derby, and most recently this past weekend covering the 3rd Annual Wikwemikong Pike & Bass Classic. This year over 100 boats participated in Manitoulin Island premiere summer fishing competition! Barb, Mulligan and I had the pleasure again of staying at the beautiful Bayside Resort .
I must admit I was really impressed by the clear Lake Huron, ON waters and the fabulous fishing. We started things off on Friday afternoon by fishing very shallow 1-3′ of water in a massive bulrush filled bay. At first I was skeptical about catching trophy smallmouth bass in such clear shallow water, but when I hooked my first fish I was convinced!
My strategy was to cover as much of the bulrush “edge” as fast and efficiently as I could. To do this I chose to fish a Rapala Shift baitcasting outfit loaded with Sufix 832, 20 lb. test braid, 12 lb. Sufix Fluorocarbon leader and the Rapala Dives To 4 crankbait series.
We left the bulrush bays and headed for one of the many island shorelines and started “twitching’ the Rapala Husky Jerk #14 targeting smallmouth bass and pike. In no time, my wife Barbara hooked the first 18″ smallmouth bass on her Husky Jerk.
I landed several nice pike, including this trophy that nailed the new Rapala “Live” series Husky Jerk which I twitched around one of the many small islands that has nice aquatic vegetation leading up to it’s bank!
After pike fishing we switched to targeting smallmouth bass on the open-water shoals surrounded by 50’+ of water. Large, feeding smallmouth bass come out of deep water and venture into water less than 4′ in search of crayfish & baitfish. This is where I fished a drop-shot rig with the TriggerX series of Minnow and also the TriggerX Tube.
The water was so clear that wearing our Rapala polarized glasses both Barb & I could spot many of the smallmouth bass cruising up onto the shallower shelves and then we made our presentation just ahead of them….very exciting!
Barb & I also got a chance to meet and fish with Brian Still, an expert angler/fishing guide who was drawn to “fish with the pros” and kept us company fishing out of our camera crew boat. Brian took us to some of his favorite fishing spots and they all produced nice fish……thank you very much Brian!Brain also won the “mystery-fish” prize by weighing-in a bowfin (dogfish), over 6 lb.!
If you love to bass and pike fish in a beautiful wilderness setting with endless islands, clear water, lot’s of weedbeds and fish, than you should definitely check into fishing from Wikwemikong, ON. If you would like more info. or you would like to book accommodations and a guide, you can contact, Wikwemikong Tourism.