Lodge 88, Esnagi Lake
In Algoma Country there are great fly fishing opportunities for pike and walleye, as well as numerous other warm water and even cold water species.
One of our favourite locations is Lodge 88 on Esnagi Lake. Easy access to wilderness fishing, particularly pike and walleye, is one of the biggest reasons why anglers love this lodge. You can fly-in by float plane from White River or take the train (See our article, “Planes, Trains and Automobiles”, posted in December). Either way, it’s a short and easy trip to arrive at the lodge, which is located in an area with excellent northern pike and walleye fishing. Esnagi Lake is 27 miles long and filled with bays, islands and shoals for great fishing and exploring.
The big pike here hold tight to emerging or established weed beds and near structures such as beaver lodges, fallen trees and rocky points. The best time to fish for them on Esnagi Lake is May thru to early July when they are still in relatively shallow water, perfect for fly fishers. Even the walleye can be easily caught in 6 to 12 feet of water near weed beds and rocky points.
The lodge has great boats for fly fishers with wide bottoms and good casting decks. Esnagi lake is large and thankfully Lodge 88 has guides available who can be hired for a day or two to show you the best hot-spots. Lodge 88 also has both housekeeping and full American plans to meet your needs. The main lodge has a pool table, full bar and TV area with satellite connections, so you won’t miss that important game! The lodge features cabins and rooms that are large and spacious enough for your fly fishing equipment.
Casting large sized poppers in black, purple or yellow close to weed edges can produce some spectacular results. Based on the mood of the pike, we recommend you experiment with retrieve speeds and styles to find what works. Top streamers for the pike are deceivers, bunny leeches and other large patterns that imitate whitefish, walleye or perch. For the walleye, use streamers on the weed edges or near rocky shorelines. Woolly buggers in tan, black or medium brown are great choices as are white zonkers or Murdich Minnows coupled to sink-tip or intermediate fly lines.
We recommend you bring 8 to 9 weight rods in 9-foot lengths with fast-actions to help facilitate casting large streamers or poppers to the pike or walleye. Leaders for pike should be 4 to 6 feet in length with a 24 inch wire bite tippet in a 20-30lb strength. For the walleye, standard leaders of 9 foot lengths with a 2x tippet are perfect for connecting woolly buggers and other flies.
Lodge 88 is an outstanding fly fishing destination that offers wilderness fishing for northern pike and walleye with great access options and affordable pricing. As an added bonus, they also have access to some good brook trout fishing on a local lake! We strongly recommend you give them a call!
Phone: David or Terry at 1-705-812-1624