Drill a hole in lake or river ice and you’ll fall hook, line and sinker for ice fishing. Northern Manitoba is a year-round destination for trophy fishers who flock to hundreds of lakes and streams to catch walleye, northern pike, lake trout and other species. Fly-in lodges abound, but you can drive or ride a snowmobile to dozens of popular spots.
Stay cozy in a fishing shack or pull up a camp chair and take in the crisp winter air. Aim for solitude or join the fun at a fishing derby — just make sure your fishing hole is big enough to accommodate a whopper. Complete ice fishing package rentals in the Thompson area are available through Akamihk Adventures.
Near Lynn Lake, head for Burge Lake or Zed Lake, both within 20 kilometres from town. Wekusko Falls Lodge offers prime fishing opportunities at Snow Lake.
Take a Bombardier excursion at Flin Flon’s Bakers Narrows Lodge, and head for Paint Lake Lodge near Thompson to enjoy a day on the ice.
The incorporated community of Nelson House hosts an annual fishing derby on Foot Print Bay that has attracted as many as 1,000 people. Just north of The Pas, the Jimmy Jackfish Ice Fishing Derby is held at Rocky Lake in March. And the Rotary Club of The Pas organizes one of Manitoba’s biggest derbies — the Bill Bannock Fishing Derby on Clearwater Lake, which offers an instant prize of $25,000 for the angler who catches a tagged fish dubbed Lonesome Mary.
The Flinty Ice Fishing Derby in Flin Flon also offers $25,000 for a tagged fish named Missing Mickey and there are bonus prizes if you enter the Flinty and Bill Bannock derbies. You can add your fish lengths from both derbies together to win a combination prize.