Most of the competitors in the 6th Annual Wikwemikong Ice Fishing derby were either jigging with a spoon, or using live minnows.
I had a chance to fish with derby co-ordinator and professional guide/charter boat captain Luc Wassegijig from the Wikwemikong Unceded Indian Reserve, Manitoulin Island, ON and we had an excellent time on the ice.
We fished the spoons on Rapala ice fishing combos loaded with Sufix 832 Ice Braid and Sufix Ice Magic Line. Spoons work well in clear water to attract cruising rainbows from a distance. Once a rainbow moves in to check-out the spoon it really helps to have an additional “attractor” on one of the hooks.
Cutting several holes, moving around and being patient can produce good ice fishing results for rainbow trout.
All of the rainbows were caught in shallower water less than 15′ near weeds & all were suspended off the bottom.
The 6th Annual Wikwemikong Ice Fishing Derby was again a great success and the winning rainbow weighed just over 8 lb.. Luc and I managed to get several eating size rainbows with one trophy male fish.
Ice fishing for rainbows can be challenging since they can feed/cruise at any depth from just under the ice, to right on the bottom. A good quality ice sonar really helps and we used the Humminbird Ice 55 to mark our lures and any in-coming rainbows.
If you would like to get more info. fishing for the plentiful Wikwemikong rainbow trout, either through the ice or during the open water season, contact, Wikwemikong Tourism.