Muskie Mania: 23 Amazing Photos of the Muskie Fishing Opener
What an unbelievable start to the 2023 muskie fishing season!
The muskie fishing opener is the third Saturday in June in most parts of Ontario. Many muskie anglers wait in eager anticipation of the opener. They are driven by the pure adrenaline rush that comes from fighting this aggressive fish—and can become obsessed with learning how to land the elusive predator.
In the spring, muskies often stay in the warmer water—near weed beds, stump fields, reefs, sand beaches, rocky shorelines, and moving water.
The 2023 muskie season has been open now for a week, and all I can say is wow! There have been a ton of fantastic muskie and tiger muskie catches and releases!
Here is just a sampling of what’s been caught (and released):
Lac Seul & Area
Anderson Lodge guests fish for muskie on Lac Seul, Little Vermilion, Closs, Cedarbough, Maskinonge, and Hooch Lakes.
Moosehorn Lodge has some of the area's finest experienced guides, that will put you on fish like no other. MHL specializes in muskie fishing and is the only one that offers guided evening fishing.
Lake of the Woods
Lake of the Woods, with its many grassy bays, is undoubtedly one of the most productive muskie habitats in North America. World-class muskies thrive in the waters of Stephens Bay, Whitefish Bay, Sabaskong Bay, Miles Bay, Burrow Bay and Sunset Chain Channel to name a few!
Totem Resorts offers specialized fishing packages custom-tailored to your very needs. They have three resorts and two outposts to stay at and fish from.
Sunset Cove Resort is located on Sabaskong Bay on Lake of the Woods, which it is known for being one of the finest areas when seeking your trophy muskie!
These monsters are the biggest and baddest freshwater fish roaming the depths of Lake of the Woods. For sheer numbers and trophy size look to Black Island for your fish of a lifetime!
Other lodges with muskie fishing on Lake of the Woods:
Witch Bay Camp, Helliar’s Resort, Indianhead Lodge, King Island Lodge, Mylie’s Place Resort, Tomahawk Resort, Pipestone Point Resort, Young’s Wilderness Camp (also at their outpost on Kishkutena), New Moon Lodge, Big Narrows Resort, Harris Hill Resort, Crow Rock Lodge, Crystal Harbour Resort, Crawford’s Camp, The Sanctuary Resort, Little Bear Island, Clarke & Crombie Camp, Smith Camps, Ash Rapids Lodge, Arrowhead Resort & Motel.
English River System
The English River System and Delaney Lake both produce muskies in the 40-50 inch range. For those anglers who have never caught a muskie and aren't worried about size, they also keep several boats on a cache lake which produces many smaller muskies. You never know when you will catch your first muskie.
Keystone is situated on Cedar Lake which is made up of bays, islands, and channels with many weed beds and lots of rock structure and underwater reefs.
Other lodges on Cedar: Cedar Lake Camp on 105
Eagle Lake produces unbelievable numbers of muskies between 40 and 45 inches with quite a few each year in the 50 to 56 inch range. It's one of the best muskie lakes in the region!
You don’t have to go far from the lodge when you fish Eagle Lake for muskies! I caught my first muskie ever here, a 48” muskie just a minute or two from the lodge.
Another lodge on Eagle Lake with a great track record for monster muskies!
Eagle Lake is renowned for its trophy muskie. The West Arm of Eagle Lake offers a variety of structure from deep drop-offs to shallow weedy bays. With trophy fish being caught every year, at all times of the season, you never know when that big one will hit.
Other lodges with muskie fishing on Eagle Lake:
Rowan Lake is well known for its “World Class Trophy” muskie fishing. Rowan Lake is a destination for many novice and hardcore muskie hunters alike. Rowan Lake is a clear water lake with endless fishing structures, cabbage filled bays with weeds growing into 20 feet of water.
Crow (Kakagi) Lake
Guests of Muskie Bay Resort can fish Crow Lake for muskie or on Lake of the Woods which is just a short drive away.
Other lodges with muskie fishing on Crow Lake:
Big Vermilion Lake
Muskie anglers at Nutt’s Country Cabins can fish Big Vermilion Lake where the cabins are located or head out to Lac Seul or Minnitaki Lakes for muskies. The rock reefs and points make Big Vermilion Lake a hot spot for muskie fishing.
Indian Lake has plenty of weed beds, reefs, rock cliffs, and drop-offs just loaded with fish!
Indian Lake has many muskies in the 40"+ category. You also have the potential to catch that famous 50"+ fish.
Two of Clark’s resorts offer muskie fishing. KC’s Landing Resort, Clark’s drive-in camp is found on the Indian Lake chain. Northern Lights Resort, another resort easily accessible by car, has great muskie fishing on Cedar Lake.
Fly North Outfitters has a private lodge on Indian Lake.
From bays and beaches to rapids and falls, Maynard Lake has the structure and current to provide "spring fishing" throughout the season. Huge muskies are caught each year.
Maynard Lake owner Josh snuck out to fish on muskie opener and caught this 50.5” muskie!
Perrault Lake & Area
Perrault Lake is just off Highway 105 south of Ear Falls. While not known for its number of muskies, it does have some huge ones to hunt for.
Perrault Lake and the Cedar River Chain host big muskie waters. A couple at 50” plus already has been caught & released this week AND one 54 incher!!
Other lodges with muskie fishing on Perrault Lake:
Wabigoon and Dinorwic Lakes
Wabigoon and Dinorwic Lakes are a couple of the hottest muskie lakes in Ontario and maybe in all of North America.
Lodges with muskie fishing on Dinorwic: Pine Sunset Lodge
Here is Nick Meints releasing his 50" muskie caught during the first week of muskie fishing while fishing Wabigoon Lake at Wabigoon Lake Outfitters!
Clearwater-Pipestone Chain of Lakes
Clearwater (Burditt) Lake has muskie fishing on the north end of the lake. Take the mechanical portage to Pipestone Lake which also has fantastic muskie fishing.
Lodges with muskie fishing on the Clearwater/Pipestone Chain of lakes:
Upper and Lower Manitou Lakes
The guides at Green Island Lodge have been fishing Upper Manitou Lake for years so if you are after a trophy muskie, their guides can set you up with the right lures and show you their favourite spots.
Muskies are as plentiful as they get, with monsters that reach over 50 inches. Lower Manitou Lake is one of 10 lakes in Ontario where biologists feel the next World Record muskie could be caught.
Winnipeg River System
Five fishing lakes, Gun, Little Sand, Big Sand, Rough Rock and Pistol Lakes, on the Winnipeg River System can be fished by boat without portaging.
Abram Lake/Minnitaki Chain of Lakes
Fly-in and Boat-in Outposts Lake with Muskie
Northwest Flying Inc (Kishkutena & Shingwak Lakes), Fly North Outfitters (Vaughn Lake), Gateway North Outfitters (Grant Lake), Nestor Falls Fly-in Outposts (Kay Lake), Canada Outfitters (Unexpected Lake), Canadian Fly-in Outposts (Meggisi Lake), Hal’s Outposts (Esox Lake boat-to)
Red Lake Area
Little Vermilion Lake System
There are plenty of muskies to be caught on this system including Maskinonge, Hooch, Cloudlet, Closs and Cedarbough Lakes.
For a complete list of all lodges that offer muskie fishing in Sunset Country, click here.
Would you like a guide to take you muskie fishing? Find a list here.
- What are Tiger Muskies?
- Reminders for Muskie Season
- Fish Holds by Species
- 10 Ways to Lose a Muskie
- Tips for Targeting Muskies Early in the Year
As you can see, muskie fishing season has started out quite well, have you planned your muskie fishing trip yet? If not, what are you waiting for? Pick out a place to go fishing and go land a trophy for yourself!