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Top 10 Places To Catch Giant Pike

Top 10 Places To Catch Giant Pike

A select look at some of the most notable  locations to go giant pike fishing.

1 Yukon River, Alaska

Outsize pike lurk in the bays and grassy backwaters of the Yukon River and its tributaries. Chances for fish from 25 to 30 pounds or better are good in the cool, slow-moving waters. The Yukon has fantastic opportunities for fly-fishing. At Midnight Sun Trophy Pike Adventures, a houseboat with accommodations for six anglers serves as your wilderness base camp, with three guided 'satellite ' boats taking you into even more remote areas. They reported fish to 55 inches last year. ­Contact: Midnight Sun Trophy Pike Adventures, mstpa.com.

2 Taltson River, Northwest Territories

Penny considers the upper Taltson River to be the top destination for giant pike in North America today. More pounds per inch than anywhere else in North America, he says, the pike here are the toughest he's encountered. Big walleyes, too, along with magnificent scenery. Contact: Aurora Nights Lodge, auroranights.ca, 867/394-4001.

3 Misaw Lake Lodge, Saskatchewan

Straw says Misaw Lake in northern Saskatchewan has some of the most consistent trophy pike fishing he's ever experienced. The Schwandt River, an excellent big-pike venue, runs out of Misaw Lake near Misaw Lake Lodge. Misaw produces pike over 50 inches long most years, and the lodge offers fly-outs and hikes to other lakes full of trophy pike that don't get fished for years. Contact: Misaw Lake Lodge, misawlakelodge.com.

4 Wollaston Lake, Saskatchewan

Wollaston Lake, the largest lake in the world that has outflows in two different drainage basins, produces numbers of trophy pike in the mid-40- to 50-inch range every year. Sight-fishing shallow is a top tactic for early season, with an endless number of points, bays, and neckdowns that hold pike through summer. The lodge accommodations and dining are first class, and seasoned and knowledgeable guides are at the top of their game. ­Contact: Wollaston Lake Lodge, wollastonlakelodge.com.

5 Colorado Reservoirs, U.S.

Eleven Mile, Williams Fork, Spinney Mountain, and Stagecoach reservoirs all are top waters for big pike, says Matt Smiley, sales manager for Eagle Claw based in Denver. Last September, his friend Mike Stark caught a 46 1/2-incher just ounces shy of 30 pounds, a state-record caliber fish. All these reservoirs have 30-pound class fish that grow big on a diet of trout, he says. Guide Nathan Zelinsky specialized in trophy Colorado pike. He says peak times are May and late September and early October. Tactics include trolling with planer boards as well as casting jerkbaits, swimbaits and tubes. There's also an amazing topwater bite in July or August, he says. Contact: Guide Nathan Zelinsky, Tightline Outdoors, 720/775-7770; Colorado Parks and Wildlife, parks.state.co.us.

6 Lac La Martre, Northwest Territories

In-Fisherman contributor and trophy pike expert Jack Penny likes Lac La Martre for 20- to 30-pound pike. With spectacular sight-fishing, it's a fly fisherman's dream, he says. Fish remain shallow all year. Crystal clear water with bonus huge lake trout. Contact: Lac La Martre Adventures, nwtfishing.com, 810/334-9381.

7 Great Slave Lake, Northwest Territories

Among the top spots in In-Fisherman Field Editor Matt Straw's list is Trout Rock Lodge, on the north shore of Great Slave Lake. It's located in an archipelago formed by hundreds of islands, which protect some of the most expansive far northern pike habitat on earth. Straw says you'll find lots of "kraken," as the locals call pike over 40 inches long. And he reports more 50-inch pike are caught here every year than anywhere he's been. Contact: Trout Rock Lodge, enodah.com.

8 Athabasca Lake, Saskatchewan

This massive water, stretching over 230 miles, with large connected rivers and plentiful pike habitat, has tremendous fishing for big pike, Penny says. Mostly known for big lakers, the pike fishing is overlooked. Lots of classic weedy bays with clear water. Some of the biggest pike in Saskatchewan await anglers. Contact: Lakers Unlimited, lakersunlimited.com, 780/853-1151; Blackmur's Athabasca Fishing Lodges, athabascalake.com, 877/922-0957.

10 Reindeer Lake, Saskatchewan

At over 180 miles long and up to 60 miles wide, Reindeer Lake is full of classic pike habitat, with thousands of islands, structural elements, and weedy bays. Last season, Lawrence Bay Lodge recorded their largest catches of big pike from 18 to 35 pounds, and some over 35. Sight-fishing is a top strategy in some areas. Fishing deeper structure and weededges also produces giant pike at certain times. Bonus lake trout, walleyes, and grayling. Contact: Lawrence Bay Lodge, lawrencebay.com.

9 Rainy Lake, Ontario

The location of numerous TV segments for In-Fisherman Television, Rainy Lake on the Ontario-U.S. border remains one of the top drive-to destinations in North America. Pike in the 10- to 15-pound range are common, with chances at 40-inch-plus fish. The weeks after ice-out find postspawn pike in shallow weedy bays­ — prime time to target pike with flies. Later into June, pike transition to deep weedlines, and many fish move to rocky structures in fall. Contact: Woody's Rainy Lake Resort and Fairly Reliable Guide Service, fairlyreliable.com; Camp Narrows Lodge, campnarrows.ca.

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