Fishing for Muskies in Cedar Lake

Cedar Lake in Sunset Country, like so many other Ontario waters, is loaded with muskies.

September in Ontario is definitely a time of transition. Quite often the month can start out feeling like summer and end with the realization that winter is just around the corner. Of course, the unique thing about September is that on any given week, you can experience the same thing!

Cedar Lake Lodge is in the heart of the musky action on Cedar Lake.

When we arrived at Cedar Lake Lodge conditions were certainly summerlike. We were greeted by new owners Tracy Segee and Wade Underhill. It was immediately evident they had upgraded the lodge. Cedar Lake Lodge caters to musky anglers, they have incredible cabins a great docking system and can point you in the direction of the nearest musky!  We unpacked our gear and had about an hour of daylight left, so we just had to do a little musky fishing! Cedar Lake in Perrault Falls, in Northwestern Ontario, is loaded with musky spots and we were fishing within a couple of minutes of camp.  It was a beautiful, warm evening and despite the two muskies that tried to eat our Musky Frenzy bucktails, we let them escape without getting to take their picture. It wasn’t the way we wanted to start the trip, but having a couple of musky encounters after a long drive was certainly encouraging of good things to come for the rest of the trip.

Cedar lake Lodge caters to musky anglers. There are many great musky spots within sight of the camp.

In early fall, muskies tend to move shallowly. As the water temperatures drop muskies move both into the weeds and use the shallow rocks more frequently. Our first two days were sunny and warm and we bounced between a t-shirt and hoodie all day. We found a bunch of muskies located in shallow, weedy bays and we basically fished throughout the entire lake searching for thick weed areas. Cedar Lake is unique in that it fishes like three different types of water. The west end is clear, the middle section often has a greenish colour and the east end is tea stained. Regardless of what section we fished, we consistently encountered muskies. We caught several each day all on Musky Frenzy IC10 bucktails. It was clear though that although we caught muskies that hit away from the boat, you really needed a well-executed figure 8 at the boat side to get them to bite. After catching eight muskies up to 47 inches in the first two days, when we woke up on day three conditions had significantly changed.

Jim Saric with this giant Cedar Lake cloudy-day musky.

The rain had moved into the area and the air temperature had dropped about 20 degrees. It was time to grab a few extra layers as well as the rain gear. Even when it stopped raining the rain gear was essential for keeping away the bite from the cold winds of fall. Again, we fished weeds and contacted muskies. It was interesting as they weren’t quite as aggressive, and with the wind shift some of the bays exposed to the wind were not holding active muskies. Anytime you have wind it’s always a good idea to check the rocks. We started fishing some rocky points that were exposed to the wind and it seemed every one of them held at least one musky!  As the day ended we had boated six muskies fishing a combination of weeds and rocks.

Scott Schuster was the king of the sunny days on our trip to Cedar catching many muskies like this on a well-executed figure eight with his bucktail.

As the final day approached we woke up able to see our breath in the cool fall air.  Again it was cloudy and the warm weather we had experienced a few days earlier was erased from our minds. The wind had switched again to the north and it really felt like a fall-musky day.  We began the day fishing rocks. Right from the beginning of the day, it was clear the muskies were putting on the feedbag. What was also evident, was the muskies were right up on top of the rocky structures. Again, the bucktails were key, although I did manage to catch a few minnow baits ripping them and making contact with the rocks. What was interesting is that we fish several weedy areas that had been holding muskies, but they seemed to disappear.  However, there were plenty of muskies to be caught on the rocks. This was an amazing day as we ended up with seven muskies including 48 and two 47 inches.

This was definitely a Cedar Lake showdown, as we had to switch from weeds to rocks and battle the weather, as summer disappeared before our eyes and the winds of fall arrived. Cedar Lake, like so many other Ontario waters, is loaded with muskies, and with an open mind and willingness to try different things, reward the musky angler.  Cedar Lake Lodge is in the heart of the musky action. Check them out at www.sportfishin.com. Also, you can find more great Ontario musky destinations at  www.sunsetcountry.com

About Jim Saric

Jim owns Jim Saric Outdoors, Inc., which is dedicated to elevating the sport of musky fishing to new levels by educating anglers through print, web, and television. He is the publisher, editor and owner of Musky Hunter Magazine and the Executive Producer of The Musky Hunter television series. Jim has over twenty-five years experience fishing lakes, rivers, and reservoirs from Minnesota to New York and all across Canada. He has boated more than 100 muskies exceeding 50 inches in length, the largest weighing 53 pounds.

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