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Walleye Wonderland

Updated: By Karl Kalonka

The walleye is by far one of the most sought-after species of fish that inhabit the thousands of lakes and rivers across Ontario’s Algoma Country. Every season, anglers from across the world book vacations to this region to enjoy the stress-free, wilderness environments of this beautiful landscape and fish for the famous marble-eyed critter that calls Algoma it’s home. Most of the waters in Algoma are classic examples of what water should look like for walleye. Limitless rocky island points, deep reefs, shoals and thick weed beds.

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Many of the resorts & lodges in the region have access to lakes with excellent walleye fishing. There are also year-round lodges that offer ice fishing for walleye in the winter months. Walleye season opens on the third Saturday in May and closes December 31st each year.

The popular drift and jig off the bottom are a sure way to catch walleye in this region but suspended jerk baits, soft-bodied shad-style baits or curly-tailed grubs on ball head jigs can catch walleye just about anywhere you fish. One of the best parts of fishing for walleye in this region is the availability of lakes that hardly see any angling pressure whatsoever throughout the year. Many of the lodges in the region offer back lake wilderness options for a day, two days or a full week in remote cabins on lakes full of walleye all to yourself!

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These wilderness adventures are perfect for a group of friends who want the solitude of mother nature with no other soul in sight, just you and your group of buddies. Some lodges offer fly-in fishing trips that begin on the dock with you and your gear being loaded into the plane, then taking off for the ultimate journey. Be prepared to see spectacular sights below as you fly over the dense forests, rocky hills, inland lakes and rivers of Algoma. Whether you choose a remote fly-in outpost or a full-service lodge that offers full American plan or Housekeeping cabins, your hosts will exceed your expectations. These lodge owners have perfected the customer comes first policy and ensure your vacations are as smooth and memorable as can be.

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When it comes to rigging up for Algoma walleye, that is the easy part. Spinning rods from six to seven feet in length in medium power with reels spooled with eight-pound line, a tackle bag stuffed with ball head jig heads in sizes ranging from one-eighth to three-eighth ounce, a selection of your favourite soft plastic baits and your set for ninety-percent of the lakes you will fish. Throw in some bladed worm harnesses and split shots for drifting over large flats on a pleasant summer’s eve in search of walleye dinner.

Algoma Country’s air services are located in the following municipalities: Wawa, White River, Hornepayne, Hearst, Hawk Junction, Chapleau, Foleyet, Algoma Mills, Blind River and Nakina. We have been fortunate to experience both drive-to and fly-in walleye trips in Algoma and can honestly say the fishing has NEVER let us down. From the one-hundred-plus days of catching walleye in the fourteen to twenty-inch class for seven days straight to hunting down the trophy ‘eyes of Algoma in the mid-twenty to thirty-inch class.

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Check with regional creel and slot size regulations before you plan your trip and check with the lodges for walleye catch and release policies of bigger, mature spawning fish that provide fish for future generations. Better to know before you go.

Algoma truly is a walleye wonderland and is waiting for you this season!

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About Karl Kalonka

It's possible Karl's love for fishing began as early as the age of five. His parents took the kids on weekend trips across Ontario fishing for panfish, catfish, and bass. "I started with a bobber and worm from the time I was five years old," says Karl. These days, he has the enviable task of doing what he loves for a living, travelling across Ontario fishing, filming and producing two outdoor series, Extreme Angler and Crappie Angler TV.

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