The Freshwater Phil guide to Montreal shore fishing spots

Montreal's best shore fishing spots

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Ice fishing in the Outaouais region

As I’ve enjoyed some great fishing on Giles Lake over the past few summers, I finally decided to try ice fishing for Northern Pike there. I arrived early Sunday morning, my oldest son Ari and I were out on the ice and set up about 9:00 AM. I fished with frozen smelt, sardines and small mackerels, rigged on a mix or double hooks and quick strike rigs. For two days we enjoyed perfect weather, but not one fish! I had one small strike, the first morning, but that was it. I fished drop offs, shallow bays, deep point and area that contained nice weeds during the summer, and rock piles, so I basically covered all types of structure in that lake. On the second day, I was out with the owner of the outfitter as he didn’t have any other customers, he decided to jig for perch using a Rapala ice minnow. His sonar marked schools of fish suspended in about 30-40 feet of water, with a healthy amount of “big ones”. He didn’t hook any all morning, but later that afternoon he managed 2 largemouth bass in the 1.5 – 2 lb range. I normally catch about 100-150 bass to 1 pike in that lake during the summer, I figured winter would be the perfect opportunity to even out the ratio, but I was proven wrong. I did get my first experience with a snowmobile which I used to haul us and all my gear around the lake, although I couldn’t figured out how to get the machine to turn properly on the ice paths on the shore, and ended up stuck in a couple snow banks, but I did manage to move around properly on the lake. I was planning this trip since last year, finally found the perfect weather and time to go, unfortunately the pike had other ideas.

2 comments:

Loic said...

Sorry to hear about the lack of fish, at least you were out there trying! I admire that! Good luck next time!

gouthro said...

Hey Phil, that water looks really fresh :) and hard! I have driven over the Isle au Torte bridge and seen people ice fishing and catching rather large fish, pike I imagine. But, i haven't got the courage up to get all the gear and go out in the cold and do it. Congratulations.

By the way, I was looking at Lake Giles on the map. From what I saw it seems to be a private lake that you have to pay access to. I don't think that I am correct in that. But, maybe you could clue me in on it. I'd like to head up there someday--in the summer.
Joe