The mere mention of ice fishing sends us into a bit of frenzy here at Algoma Country Headquarters -- we can't help it -- we love ice fishing. From the excitement of the tug on the line and bringing up a big Northern Pike, Walleye or Lake Trout from the dark, icy chamber below to the peaceful surroundings that draw you in as you spend time with family and good friends, ice fishing really offers something for everyone.
Top 5 Things to Consider When Planning an Algoma Ice Fishing Vacation
Ice fishing in Algoma has its own character: it's not only a competitive sport, but also a way of life for many families all winter. It's a source of fresh air and sustenance,camaraderie and friendly competition. It's not just a day out on a lake; it's an entire experience: snowmobiling onto a remote lake, winter scenery and wildlife, a sauna to unwind in, and telling fish stories around the hot stove. Ice fishing is an amazing activity to build an entire vacation around. Whether it's your first time out on the ice, or you're a seasoned veteran, there are always new ways to experience ice fishing in Algoma. Here are 5 simple questions to ask yourself before planning your trip:
1. How are you getting to the lake? You can drive to an ice fishing lake just minutes from every community in the Algoma region. If you're looking to do something exclusive, take a Tracks to Trails snowmobile excursion and train-in into a lodge.
2. What are you looking for? Big fish, remote locations, variety of fish species, awesome scenery? Algoma's got it.
3. What are you doing when you're not ice fishing? After a few hours out on the lake, or even at the end of the day, you want to warm up and relax. Take the snowmobile back to the lodge for a long sauna. Maybe check out the games room for a friendly game of pool or cards. Or pick a lodge near an OFSC snowmobile trail for some off-lake excitement.
4. What's keeping you going? Good food is a must. Maybe you're a traditionalist looking to cook up your fresh fish. Perhaps you're looking for a little five-star treatment.
5. Who's ice fishing with you? For some, the solitude of ice fishing is the big draw, but more often than not it's about a big group of friends getting together. Ice fishing is a very family friendly winter activity.
Fish Species in Algoma
Algoma is home to some of the best Walleye, Perch, Lake Trout, and Pike fishing in the world. From plentiful perch to world-record-breaking ice dinosaurs, click here for more info on Algoma fishing species. And, of course, your ice fishing lodge will welcome you with info about all the species in the area including lots of tips and strategies to make sure you don't end the day empty-handed.
What You Need to Ice Fish in Algoma
Ice fishing is not only a lot of fun but is inexpensive. You really only need an ice fishing pole and line, baited hook or lure, and something to cut a hole in the ice like an auger. But the most important thing you need is a valid fishing licence which you can easily buy online at www.mnr.gov.on.ca/en/Business/LetsFish. All you need is an Outdoors Card (which you can buy at the same time) and a printer. Then you're ready to go!
Where to Buy Ice Fishing Gear in Algoma
Joe's Sports & Surplus has been outfitting Sault Ste. Marie for over fifty years -- they are definitely a cornerstone in Algoma's biggest city. You'll find everything and anything you'll need for an ice fishing trip at this outdoor store from ice huts, fishing rods and lures, ice drills and warm clothing. It's located downtown, just off the International Bridge. Check out their products online at www.joesportsandsurplus.com
Ice Fishing Derbies in Algoma
If you're looking for friendly competition check out the ice fishing derbies listed on the 2014 Algoma Fishing Derbies List.
Where to Ice Fish in Algoma
TRAIN-IN ICE FISHING
Wilderness by Rail is a unique train trip to the fishing lodges located along the Algoma Central Railway rail line.
Tatnall Camp, Lodges Along the Line
Accommodations: housekeeping log cabin rentals
Available: sauna, bbq, pre-drilled ice holes
Packages: special rates including couples getaway
Fish For: Northern Pike, Walleye, Perch, Whitefish
Where to Fish: Oba Lake
DRIVE-IN ICE FISHING LODGES & COTTAGES
Drive-in fishing enthusiasts will love the variety of lodges, cottages and motels with access to lakes with amazing ice fishing. You can access some of these lodges by snowmobile.
Misty Mountain Fly Shop/McCauley's Village, Havilland Bay
Accommodations: motel units
Available: ice hut rentals, pre-drill ice holes, full service restaurant, general store, fuel station, near OFSC snowmobile trails
Fish For: Northern Pike, Perch, Whitefish
Where to Fish: Havilland Bay
Ernie's HK Cottages and Campground, Missanabie
Accommodations: housekeeping cottages
Available:fully licensed restaurant, fuel station
Fish For: Walleye, Northern Pike, Jumbo Perch, Lake Trout
Where to Fish: Dog Lake
Moose Horn Lodge, Chapleau
Accommodations: housekeeping cabin in remote setting
Available: near OFSC snowmobile trails
Fish For: Walleye, Trout
Where to Fish: McLennan Lake
Snowshoe Camp, Mississagi Valley
Accommodations: housekeeping cottages
Available: recreation hall, near OFSC snowmobile trails
Fish For: Lake Trout, Walleye, Northern Pike
Where to Fish: Wakomata Lake
Wakomata Shores Resort, Mississagi Valley
Accommodations: housekeeping cottages
Available: sauna, The Country Kitchen Restaurant, meal plan for guests, heated ice huts, near OFSC snowmobile trails
Fish For: Lake Trout, Walleye , Northern Pike
Where to Fish: Wakomata Lake
Klotz Lake Camp, Longlac
Accommodations: housekeeping cottages, shower and laundry facilities
Available: recreation hall, general store, meals
Fish For: Lake Trout, Northern Pike, Walleye, Whitefish
Where to Fish: Klotz Lake, Lukinto/Margo
Mountain View Lodge, Searchmont
Accommodations: housekeeping cottages
Available: dining room with breakfast and dinner for guests, access to OFSC snowmobile trails
Fish For: Trout, Walleye, Northern Pike
Where to Fish: nearby lakes
Lake Lauzon Resort, Algoma Mills
Accommodations: bed & breakfast, housekeeping cottages
Available: breakfast for B&B guests
Fish For: Lake Trout, Northern Pike, Bass
Where to Fish: Lake Lauzon
Uncles Restaurant and Lodge, Hornepayne
Accommodations: housekeeping cabins, bunkhouse, sleeper cabin, facilities
Available: restaurant, deli bar, fuel station, guide services available on request, direct access to OFSC D108A snowmobile trail
Fish For: Northern Pike, Walleye, Bass, Trout, Perch, Whitefish
Where to Fish: nearby lakes
Looking for more places to stay? Check out the Algoma business directory.
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Last updated December 19, 2013
More Ice Fishing in Ontario
It seems like a minute a snowflake hits the ground, staff at Algoma Country are taking calls, replying to emails and fulfilling inquiries for trail maps about snowmobiling trips to our region. So to help our snowmobile friends from Michigan and the Greater Toronto Area, I've compiled a list of online resources for where you can find up-to-date snowmobile trail conditions for District 13 (Algoma Trails). For more information about snowmobile trips in Algoma visit www.snowmobilealgoma.com
Algoma Trails (ASPA)
Your number one resource for District 13 snowmobile trails. ASPA is our district office and you'll find trail updates and news on their website and Facebook page. The website itself is a complete source for trail maps, trail openings or closures, permit prices, club information and any snowmobile events that may be happening.
Wawa Sno Riders
Facebook: Wawa Sno Riders
The Wawa Sno Riders Club grooms our northern trails that link Wawa to Dubreuilville and North. Like the Sno Riders on Facebook to keep to date on the trails around Wawa. The Sno Riders post photos, weather and trail conditions, and any other relevant news that you'll want to know.
Facebook: Sault Trailblazers
The Sault Trailblazers have all the info on their local trails that connect to the North Channel and North (Chapleau, Missnaibie, Wawa, Dubreuilville). You'll find weather conditions, information for trail permits, trail openings, closures and availability throughout the snowmobile season.
Facebook: Algoma Country
Of course you can always contact our office. Any of our staff at the Algoma office are happy to answer any snowmobile questions you may have, whether it's about the opening of trails for season, where to buy your permit, or send you a trail map and travel information. Just send us an email or give us a call and we will help you plan your awesome snowmobile trip to Algoma!
The Groomer Guy
Blog: The Groomer Guy Blog
Facebook: The Groomer Guy
Whether you read his blog or check-in to his Facebook page, Luc Levesque keeps snowmobilers up-to-date on trail conditions for the Dubreuilville trails. Luc posts photos and videos.
Ontario Federation of Snowmobiles (OFSC)
The Interactive Map is a very handy tool. This online map is regularly updated with information of trail availability, limited availability and closures throughout the snowmobile season. You can also find points of interest like fuel stops, accommodations, etc.
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This testimonial was sent to Algoma Country from Jamie and Herb Britton. Each year, Jamie and Herb take a fly-in fishing trip to enjoy a remote fishing vacation. Below is what they had to say about their latest trip, and the photo blog below, to Watson's Pine Portage Lodge on Kabinakagami Lake.
During our fishing trip this past June we caught a thirty inch, 10 lb walleye during our stay. On our way to Pine Portage Lodge this year we were able to see a variety of wildlife along the way. During our trip within the Algoma region we saw three moose, six black bear and while at the Pine Portage Lodge we seen numerous Bald Eagles along the many islands.
While at the lodge we chose the American plan with lots of food and a great variety to choose from. The main lodge was open, spacious, bright and easy access to the main dock. Cabins are vertical log pole construction with wood stoves for cool weather and the grounds were well kept. The first couple of days the weather was inclement but upon returning from our day of fishing, staff had our cabin warmed up with a nice fire lit.
During our stay we lost a fishing rod and staff accommodated us with a replacement rod without asking for the duration of our trip. Flight convenience from Wawa was great with easy access. Booking into a Wawa motel the previous night made our drive to our float plane less than five minutes away.
Jamie and Herb Britton
IF YOU WOULD LIKE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT FLY-IN FISHING TRIPS IN ALGOMA, VISIT OUR WEBSITE WWW.ALGOMAFLYINFISHING.COM
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Surrounded by Lake Superior and Lake Huron, two of the mightiest freshwater lakes in the world, Algoma Country is home to world class boating. Algoma offers visitors outstanding water adventures for power-boats, yachtsmen, and sailors. Whether you want to cruise the Benjamin Islands in the North Channel, or discover Lake Superior's magnificent shoreline this list of Algoma Marinas will help you plan your next boating trip plus makes for a handy itinerary!
The perfect starting point to explore and photograph the scenic Benjamin Islands, Bear Drop Harbour and Aird Island Beaches. You can also enjoy hiking on the Shoreline Discovery trail that offers a beautiful view of the North Channel from the bluff that towers above the marina. Transportation is provided by the marina to dining and shopping. For docking and service information visit www.thenorthchannel.ca
Blind River Marina
This town is known as an outdoor hotspot. Experience the Huron Pines 18-hole Golf Course, tennis, or for those that love to hike, the Boom Town Interpretive Trail system loops through coastal woodland, coastal wetland and shoreline. Many restaurants and shopping nearby. Find more information at www.blindriver.ca
After a pleasant day of cruising, this marina is a haven for boaters traversing the Channel east to west, or entering from the United States. The park-like setting is close to dining and shopping, while the captain's service house provides all the necessities from laundry to TV and hot showers. Bicycles are available to boaters. You can find docking information at www.townthessalon.ca
Conveniently located in the downtown core of Bruce Mines, it's easy for boaters to walk to dining, shopping and amenities. Attractions include: Bruce Mines Museum, Simpson Mine Shaft, Historic Mine Trail, and events. For docking information visit www.brucemines.ca
Hilton Beach Marina
Located on St. Joseph Island, Hilton Beach Marina is one of the Island's two ports. The Channel is home to several islands, bays, high rock walls and hidden coves making it a scenic boating destination. The village itself offers dining, shopping, festivals and events. Find docking information at www.hiltonbeach.com
The second of St. Joseph Islands' marinas, Richards Landing is just a few steps from the town centre making it easy to reach services, dining and exploring its unique shops. Open May long weekend until the second weekend in September. More docking information at www.thenorthchannel.ca
Sault Ste. Marie
Roberta Bondar Marina is situated near the heart of Algoma's largest city, Sault Ste. Marie. Boaters will find full services at the boater facility as well as restaurants, shopping and entertainment within walking distance. Attractions include: Agawa Canyon Tour Train, Canadian Bushplane Museum, Ermatinger*Clergue National Historic Site and the Sault Ste. Marie Canal National Historic Site. Just follow the Boardwalk! For docking information visit www.cityssm.on.ca
If accessing Lake Superior east to west, boaters access from the historic Sault Ste. Marie Recreational Canal. Once through, sail up the beautiful, rugged shoreline of Lake Superior dotted with coves and bays to Wawa. For more information visit www.bucksmarina.com
Algoma's waterfront communities, whether small or large, offer sheltered docking facilities, amenities and adventure. Lake Huron alone has more than thirty thousand islands, while Lake Superior offers secluded coves, bays and inlets along its rugged coastline.
For more information about boating in Algoma and to order a FREE travel guide, visit the website www.algomacountry.com
If you've got your next fishing trip booked in Algoma, I've compiled a list of fishing tackle and bait shops that you'll want to make sure you have plugged into your GPS. Whether you're looking to pick up live bait, replenish your tackle box, looking for quality hand-tied flies, or fishing guide services this list contains all the information you'll need. You can find more information about Algoma fishing trips at www.algomaregion.com
(If you need to buy your 2013 fishing license, buy it online at: Fishing Licenses - Ministry of Natural Resources Three reasons to buy online: quick, easy and safe!)
Blind River – Bruce Mines – Chapleau – Cutler – Desbarats – Echo Bay – Garden River – Goulais River – Havilland Bay – Hearst – Massey – Iron Bridge – St. Joseph Island – Sault Ste. Marie – Searchmont – Thessalon – Walford – Wawa – White River
U Rentals & Service
250 Woodward Ave Blind River ON P0R 1B0
Jerry's Live Bait & Rock Shop
1672 Centre Line Road Bruce Mines ON P0R 1C0
Rydal Bank Bait and Tackle
1689 Hwy 368 Bruce Mines ON P0R 1C0
Lake Superior Bait
536 Centre Line Road Bruce Mines ON P0R 1C0
Pits Place Bait and Tackle
209 Martel Road Chapleau ON P0M 1K0
7 Birch Street Chapleau ON P0M 1K0
PH: 705-864 -030
Serpent River Trading Post, Gas & Convenience
479 Hwy 17 Cutler ON P0P 1B0
17E Trading Post Desbarats ON P0R 1E0
Tru Bite Tackle & Snags
763 Lakeview Road Echo Bay ON
Ben's Bait & Tackle
61 Wigwaus Street Garden River ON P6A 7B2
Goulais River Country Store
Hwy 17 N Goulais River ON P0S 1E0
Timberland General Store
Hwy 17 N Goulais River ON P0S 1E0
Misty Mountain Fly Shop/Village Trading Post
5235 Hwy 17 N Havilland Bay ON P0S 1E0
Largest fly fishing retailer in the North, quality hand-tied flies for local fisheries. Large supply of stock materials, fly catalogues, internet pattern resources. Fly tying instruction, catering all to disciplines of fly fishing.
Typer's Live Bait
800 Front Street Hearst ON P0L 1N0
600 River Road Massey ON P0P 1P0
Toll Free: 1-888-811-1163
Nestled near the Spanish River, west of the town of Massey. Enjoy the luxury of testing tackle before you buy. A range of tired and test products for all budgest and fishing requirements.
The Bait Shop
17 Chiblow Lake Road Iron Bridge ON P0R 1H0
Kentvale Country General Store
721 K Line Road Jocelyn ON P0R 1J0
Hi-Way Variety Store
883 Trunk Road Sault Ste. Marie ON P6A 3T3
The Trading Post
1332 Great Northern Road Sault Ste. Marie ON P6A 5K7
Joe's Sports & Surplus
40 Queen Street East Sault Ste. Marie ON P6A 1Y3
Fishing and ice fishing supplies: tackle, rods and reels, apparel, ice huts.
Soo North Fly Shop
132 Gore Street East Sault Ste. Marie ON P6A 1M1
Canadian Tire Corporation
200 McNabb Street Sault Ste. Marie ON P6B 1Y4
Searchmont Trading Post
7 Whitman Dam Road Searchmont ON P0S 1J0
Tunnel Lake Trading Post & Motel
6274 Hwy 129 Thessalon ON P0R 1L0
Little Rapids General Store
4km North on HWY 129 Little Rapids ON
Sure Catch Baits
11a Myhill Road Walford ON P0P 2E0
Beach Front Trading Post & Outfitters
14 Broadway Ave Wawa ON P0S 1K0
Young's General Store
111 Mission Road Wawa ON P0S 1K0
Ed's Live Bait
324 Superior Street White River ON P0M 3G0
Here's a look at what boating in the North Channel of Lake Huron is really like:
While visiting the North Channel for a weekend getaway, I was stopped in my tracks, mesmerized by the stunning natural beauty of the rugged shorelines, the pure blue waters and the majestic bald eagle flying overhead. Everywhere I looked there were signs of the native culture and history of the area. The North Channel is truly a boater’s paradise!
- Kathy Edwards
Cruise the North Channel and visit the Benjamin Islands, a boater's paradise. For more information visit the Algoma website at www.algomacountry.com
Travel through 22, 000 square miles of untouched recreational wilderness in the heart of Algoma when you book a train-in fishing trip with Algoma Central Railway. Made famous by Canada’s Group of Seven, passengers experience stunning vistas of natural forest, mountain lakes, streams and wildlife. For the avid fisherman, lodges along the line offer world class fishing and first class accommodations. Deep remote lakes, rivers and streams are home to lake trout, smallmouth bass, brook and rainbow trout, walleye, perch, whitefish and northern pike. With so many lodges, vacation packages and amenities to choose from, fishermen can easily book their dream fishing trip!
Located at Mile 165 on Whitefish and Manitowik Lakes, Totomenai Lodge invites fishermen to a complete Canadian wilderness experience. With 34 miles of lake, walleye, northern pike, lake and speckled trout, smallmouth bass, whitefish and perch can be found, making for a well rounded fishing trip. American, Modified American and Housekeeping plans are available with guests enjoying 16 ft outfitted boats, guide services, fish cleaning services and a recreation area with darts and pool table.
Camp Lochalsh / Loch Island Lodge
Situated in the Chapleau Crown Game Preserve, Camp Lochalsh / Loch Island Lodge overlooks Lake Wabatongushi at Mile 178. Walleye and northern pike are the primary species to fish; walleye average 1 ½ to 2 pounds, while northern pike average 4 to 5 pounds and up to over 20 pounds. Full American, Modified American and Housekeeping plans are available with guests enjoying 18 ft cedar boats equipped with motor and fuel, fish cleaning and packing services, cedar sauna, 8-person hot tub and recreation area with pool table and ping pong.
North to Adventure
With 50 years of arranging wilderness vacations, fishermen train-in to North to Adventure on Mile 195. Situated on remote Esnagi Lake, fishermen have the choice of two lodges, Mar Mac Lodge and Lodge Eighty-Eight, or one of two Deluxe Outposts. Walleye, northern pike, whitefish and perch are plentiful in Esnagi Lake with BIG fish trophies caught yearly. American and Deluxe Housekeeping plans are available with guests enjoying 18ft cedar boats with motor and fuel, guide services, fish cleaning, tuck shop and wireless internet.
Errington’s Wilderness Island Ltd
Rough It In Velvet when the train stops on Mile 206 at Errington’s Wilderness Island overlooking Lake Wabatongushi. Fishermen can fish for northern pike in the shallow bays, or fish for walleye in the rocky reefs, rivers and streams. American and Housekeeping plans are available with guests enjoying 18 ft cedar boats with motor and fuel, depth/fish finders, fish cleaning services, delicious dining, recreation room with pool table and nature library.
Explore our wilderness by rail when you book your dream fishing trip with Algoma. You will be welcomed with warm Northern hospitality, first class accommodations, amenities and world class fishing. For more information visit the website www.wildernessbyrail.ca