Savant Lake Northern Pike Fishing: Northwestern Ontario

Northern Pike are the apex predators in Lake Savant. Most fanatical Pike hunters will tell you that a lake, which has both Lake Trout and Whitefish, produces the biggest Northerns. Whitefish are an oily fish and a rich nutritious reward for the Pike; both energy and protein. As a result, the Northern Pike in Lake Savant reach great sizes. Lake Savant is listed as being one of the top three Ontario Northern Pike fishing lakes for both numbers and size. They also have plenty of Perch and Walleyes to feed on as well.

Another factor contributing to their ability to reach great sizes is the cool clean water. Northern Pike live much longer in the far north due to the absence of parasites and other diseases. Southern waters are much warmer and have a high amount of suspended organic material making Northern very susceptible to illnesses that can compromise their ability to feed. Pike in Lake Savant are also delicious. Fishing for Northern is a lot of fun and it's also nice to know they make for an awesome shore lunch, which is a great part of any Northwestern Ontario fishing trip.

Northern Pike are most common in the 25" to 30" range. Knowing the lake well will definitely give you a chance at catching high numbers. Northern over 10lbs are common. Pike caught in the 40"-48" are not uncommon catches.

Spring Fishing:

In the spring the Pike are usually found in bays where the spring weed growth attracts Walleyes, Perch and minnows. They are most commonly found in 2' to 10' feet of water at this time of year. The bigger Northerns are ambush predators and will be found at the points leading into these bays while small to medium size Northerns will be right in the bays. This time of year, the really big Pike can take on the behavior of a Musky and sometimes leave the shallow bays to hunt down Lake Trout and Whitefish in open water offshore. The Whitefish will be in open water waiting for the May Fly hatch so if you see swirls on the surface of the water father from shore you should try casting towards them.

Summer Fishing:

During the summer the Northerns will be 10' to 40' deep. The bigger Pike sometimes move deep to hunt Lake Trout, Walleyes and Whitefish. After a big meal they sometimes come shallow again and can be found in as little as 1' or 2' of water. What they do is swim into the shallow warm water to speed up digestion. Sometimes you can see them floating on the surface like logs, which is where they got the nickname Gators. Even though they have fed their instincts force them to go after lures. If all you are getting are follow-ups, then go to a slower presentation but jerk your line as you reel in to give the lure an erratic motion.

Northern Pike will be found just about everywhere. There are lots of shallower giant Northern and they can be found along weed-lines, points leading into weedy bays, hanging around deeper ridges and shoals, mouths of feeder streams as well as narrows where Perch, Walleye and other feeder-fish are migrating through.

Fall Fishing:

Fishing for Northern Pike in the fall is very much like the spring. Most of the Pike will be in 2' to 10' of water. The water is cooling down and the weeds in the shallow back bays start to die. As they start to decompose, they give off nitrogen and methane, which drives the feeder fish out of the weeds making them exposed and the Northerns are there waiting for them. Northern Pike are especially hungry this time of year as they need to build up their fat reserves for winter.

There is another reason why baitfish leave the weeds and the shallows. You may have heard someone say, "the lake is turning". They were referring to the phenomena of Lake Turnover. Cold fall nights cool down the surface water and the cold water sinks creating slow currents, which churns the water and homogenizes the temperature. What happens is the water at 40' deep becomes the same temperature as the water at 10'. The huge Northerns that prefer cooler temperatures down deep in the 40' range during the summer come shallower to feed and are more accessible to anglers. The feeder fish that prefer warmer water are now free to move from the shore and go deeper. In this case Pike can be right up close to shore or suspended in deeper water going after schools of baitfish. At this time of year fishing at multiple depths can produce some really nice fish.

Best Northern Pike Fishing Lures:

Northern Pike lures are basically the same in all seasons. You just need to alter your tactics between shallow and deep water to be where the Northern are located.

• 4" to 6" Doctor Spoons (Silver or Gold work well)
• 4" Little Cleo (Blue & Silver)
• 4" to 6" Len Thompson Spoon (Blue & Silver)
• #5 or #6 Mepps Aglia Spinner
• #5 or #6 Mepps Comet (rubber minnow covers the hooks)
• 4" to 6" Williams Wobblers (silver works well)
• 4" to 6" various colors of Dardevle Spoons (Red & Silver and Yellow Five of Diamonds are popular but if not producing try other colors)
• For deep water Pike you can use all the lures above but with some weights. You can also use deep running lures like Rapala Down Deep Husky Jerks.
• Large spinner baits
• Large shallow running rattle-baits
• For fishing in thick weed cover a Johnson Weedless Silver Minnow is great.
• For top water Spooks, Jitterbugs, Frog & Mouse Buzz Baits and Hula Popper all work great.
• Steel leaders are a must.

Best Pike Fishing Rods & Line:

• For Northern a 6 foot medium-heavy casting rod is recommended.
• 18lbs. to 20lbs. test braided Fireline is our favorite. If you don't like using braided line then 12lbs. to 14lbs. test mono is recommended.

As stated on other fishing pages; if you use braided line and have been fishing on lakes with Zebra Mussels please change your line before coming to the lodge. Their eggs get trapped in the fibers of the line and can live on your reel for a year.