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Oles Adventure Resort on Whitefish Lake

• Credit: The Ontario Experience
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Oles Adventure Resort on Whitefish Lake

Few places rival Ontario's beautiful smallmouth bass fisheries

Superior Country has a lot of lakes and rivers with great multi-species fishing.



I love fishing for smallmouth bass. And few places rival Ontario's beautiful smallmouth bass fisheries. Interestingly, smallmouth bass are not natural to these waters—they were stocked in the late 1800 and early 1900 by Ontario's Ministry of Natural Resources via the railways. Rivers and creeks interconnect many Canadian lakes, so smallmouth bass are still expanding their range throughout Ontario to this day.

This past year I went on an exploratory fishing trip into the Superior Country of Ontario and was amazed at the quality of smallmouth bass. One of the lakes we sampled was Whitefish Lake southeast of Thunder Bay. We stayed at Oles Adventure Resort on Whitefish Lake for three days the second week of September. They have a nice operation with cabins, a campground for seasonal trailers, boat rental, etc. According to proprietor Ole Edwardson, most people who come to their resort primarily target walleye, perch and pike. Concerning smallmouth bass, he said nobody fishes for them too much. He really got my attention when he casually mentioned that they've seen smallies up to 6 pounds.

angler holding smallmouth bass

(Photo credit: The Ontario Experience)

While we did catch big walleyes, perch, and pike, smallmouths were our primary focus on this trip. The smallmouth bass fishing here was truly amazing. While it usually takes most of the day to shoot a TV show, it took us about two and half hours to gather all the needed material for the entire show. The average size of the fish was the thing that impressed me the most, ranging between 3- to 4-pounders—with a smattering of five-pounders to boot!

angler holding walleye

(Photo credit: The Ontario Experience)

After seeing the quality of the bass fishing in this region, I called Gord Ellis, a local guide and outdoor writer from Thunder Bay, to share his thoughts on Superior Country brown bass fishing. Superior Country has a lot of lakes and rivers with great multi-species fishing opportunities; you name it walleye, trout, pike, salmon and perch. There is a lot of fantastic smallmouth fishing, most of which receive little to no fishing pressure. Some Ontario camp and lodge operators are finally realizing walleye are not the only fish in Canada in recent years. In fact, they are seeing more and more mid-south anglers venturing up to Ontario in the summer to fish for smallmouth bass. Whitefish, Dog, Lac des Mille Lacs, Northern Lights are just a few of the better lakes in the area.

angler holding smallmouth bass in boat

(Photo credit: The Ontario Experience)

Fishing patterns for bass was pretty straightforward: find any rock piles or extended hard bottom spots in front of bulrush fields that had smallmouth bass on them. Some may ask, what did you catch them on? It didn't seem to make a difference. We caught them on jerkbaits, swimbaits, spinnerbaits, hair jigs and swim jigs.

Superior Country brown bass, I like to fish for fish that nobody is fishing for. They tend to bite a lot.

For more on Oles Adventure Resort, please visit: www.olesresort.com
For more on Superior Country, please visit: www.superiorcountry.ca

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