If your Ontario fishing vacation plans include walleye fishing, you're in the right place. The walleye has long been a favorite with anglers and is unsurpassed as table fare. It is caught in large numbers from mid-May through October. Walleye move from shallow bays in spring to rocky shores and reefs with cooler water as the summer progresses. Walleye fishing season on Lake of the Woods, Ontario opens the third Saturday in May.
For many anglers, fishing for walleye is a rite of spring. Fish are plentiful at this time of year and are more than willing to bite a variety of offerings. Fishing shallow rocky shorelines in the spring is a prime choice as this is where fish will have spawned and many of these fish will stay in the general vicinity for some time. Live-bait rigs or minnow-imitating crankbaits are two top choices, as is the ever-popular jig and minnow. Concentrate on low-light periods for these light-sensitive fish, and do not be afraid to venture out in the evening for some fast action. Cover water to find the fish, and, once found, a change to slower presentation to work the area more thoroughly is all that is needed.
Those walleye anglers in the know are aware that green weeds are the key to summer success. Walleye relate to these oxygen-rich plants for the cover they provide and the ambush points they can relate to in order to prey on baitfish. During the dog days of summer, a top approach is to fish the thick weed beds that you encounter on your lake during the hottest and brightest days. Drifting with the wind or using an electric trolling motor will enable you to dunk jigs into any holes and pockets that you may come across. A bucktail jig is the preferred lure for the action it provides and its superb weedlessness. Tipping your jig with a minnow, leach or night crawler may up your odds dramatically. Remember - work your jig slowly and methodically and feel for that light tap or thud to signify the hit of a walleye.
Fall time is an anglers best chance at catching monster trophy walleye. As the water cools, fish begin to put on the feedbag and can be located in typical areas throughout a body of water. Head to points and humps on the main lake to find concentrations of big females and aggressive males. For the more adventurous, trolling and casting minnow baits during the twilight hours is a sure way to bag a bunch. Choose long, slender baits with rattles intact to score on these hungry fall fish. Trolling presentations are best presented slow in these cold-water situations and the application of scent is a triggering device that will definitely up your odds.
Best Fishing Method:
- Jigging using 6 – 10 pound test line
- Night crawlers