| Fishing Tips & Tactics
Lake Nipissing is one of the most picturesque lakes in Ontario. With a myriad of scenic vistas and breathtaking sunsets, it is no wonder many consider Lake Nipissing a paradise. It's not just the views that inspire, it's a fishing paradise as well. With so many species to target it is difficult to decide what to fish for. The most sought after sport fish in Lake Nipissing is the walleye, and for good reason, a shore lunch of pan fried walleye fillets is second to none. Lake Nipissing is also home to Trophy Pike, Muskie, Jumbo Perch and Bass.
Walleye is the most hunted fish in the lake, and anglers will find that Lake Nipissing is full of these golden beauties. The most common technique used to catch walleye is drifting jigs tipped with worms. Walleye love worms! Slowing working your jig above shoals and sunken islands during dusk can be very productive. Casting crankbaits and spinners along points and near island drop-offs are also proven techniques. If fish are scattered or difficult to locate, try trolling worm harnesses with bottom bouncers. Cover water until you find a walleye, mark the spot and then fish this area slowly with jigs or minnows, and you will usually get a few more, since walleye like to school. When the bite is light, slow your presentation and downsize your baits. With the slightest tap or bump on your bait, set the hook. This can change a slow day into a good day of fishing.
Northern Pike are very common in Lake Nipissing. Everywhere you find weeds you will find pike. It's as simple as that. Pike like to hide in healthy weed growth, waiting to ambush unsuspecting prey. Lake Nipissing is home to some trophy pike, and fish in excess of 20 lbs are caught annually. These are true gators! Generally pike in the 10 to 15lb range are more common and lots of fun to catch. Fishing shallow weedlines is the most common tactic used for pike fishing. Trolling spoons and crankbaits in these areas nearly always entice strikes from these aggressive predator fish. Casting spinnerbaits into the weeds and near points and islands can also be a deadly tactic for pike. Don't forget about the best pike lure of all time, the red devil spoon. They imitate a bloody and wounded baitfish and a hungry pike can never resist an easy meal. While fishing for pike, don't be surprised if you hook up with a bonus Muskie. Muskellunge is the apex predator in Lake Nipissing and will inhabit the same areas as pike and will even feed on them.
The best time of year for trophy muskie and pike fishing is in the late fall, when these big brutes put on the feed bag in preparation for winter. Go big or go home. In the fall big baits catch big fish. Trolling large crankbaits 6-10 inches in length imitating a walleye or jumbo perch can produce some monster muskies. Trophy fish in excess of 30 lbs are caught annually and are true fish of a lifetime.
Smallmouth bass fishing on Lake Nipissing is fantastic. These feisty fish are everywhere in the lake, although they generally congregate along shorelines, drop-offs, points, rockpiles and boulder strewn sandy flats. Casting crankbaits around shorelines in sparse weeds can be productive when bass are active. Tube jigs slowly drifted on bottom is also a proven smallmouth bass tactic. The most productive colour choices, include white, brown, black and green pumpkin. Jerkbaits are also great baits for smallmouth and working a jerkbait with fast twitches on shallow flats can be deadly. Don't forget the most exciting tactic for catching smallmouth bass, topwater. Casting poppers and jitterbugs early in the morning and at dusk can produce some explosive topwater strikes.
One of the most under fished species in Lake Nipissing are Largemouth bass. These fish generally inhabit shallow weedy bays and deep weedlines. Lake Nipissing has a very healthy population of Largemouth bass with fish averaging 2-3 lbs, although trophy bass in excess of 5 lbs are not uncommon. Techniques and lures for Largemouth bass are varied, plastic worms, jig n pig, chatterbaits, spinnerbaits, crankbaits and jerkbaits, are all productive. Basically any bait that can be worked in or around weeds will catch bass.
Lake Nipissing is a fisherman's dream, with so many species of fish to target, it can be daunting deciding where and what to fish for. Hopefully these proven techniques and tactics with help you put more fish in the boat and make you a more successful angler. Enjoy what Lake Nipssing has to offer, and good luck!