Summertime Lakers !
Lake trout are of the char family – found mainly in lakes of N. America, in oxygen-rich, cold, fresh water. This game fish is extremely susceptible to overfishing due to the lake trout’s slow maturation along with its popularity . It’s one of the largest fishes native to the Great Lakes and other nearby bodies of water. It’s a rather beautiful looking fish with an array of spots and cream white belly and white edging of the fins. It’s a tremendous fighter when on the line and a favourite of anglers, esp. on the fly!
Summer time lake trout tend to swim to the deep depths once the water temps reach about 60 degrees. Most popular way to catch lakers seem to be on down riggers / conventional gear. However, it’s possible to catch them on the fly as well.
Here are the essentials you need for summertime lakers on the fly:
ROD: 7-9 wt fast action 9’ rods will do great These rod weights will be able to throw heavy sinking line and big clunky streamers.
REEL: Smooth drag with large arbour – Lakers never stop pulling once hooked, so good drag can help stop them from slowly taking all of your backing out into the depths.
LINE: Sub-surface 300+ grain full sink lake line is a must with 7 ft tapered leader in 20 lb test.
Flys: Streamers are my top choice. Everything from cone headed zonkers ( in an array of colours) pink flesh fly, to godzilla sculpin in olive/white and all white flesh flies. If I tie my own fly, I like to wrap the hook in lead wire as the base to give a faster sink rate and I use barbell eyes (weighted) along with rabbit fur & some flash. Typical size is 3.5 to 5-inches in length with a 1/0 or 2/0 mustad hook .
Fishing Lake trout locations –
Cast over reefs and drop zones – Let the line sink at least 20 ft before stripping in. During July and August the Lake Trout typically will be in well over 30 plus feet of water – so it’s imperative to have fast sinking line and fly’s to reach them.
Lake trout give a tremendous fun fight on the fly rod!
Use barb-less hooks and keep your hands out of the gills if you intend to release your catch!