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Fishing Tournaments in Northwest Ontario

Boats waiting to take off for the Red Lake Fall Classic. • Credit: Botel Photography
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Fishing Tournaments in Northwest Ontario

Bass, walleyes & more

With 70,000 lakes and rivers in Sunset Country, it's no wonder we have plenty of catch & release fishing tournaments.

Every year, visitors from all over the world come to experience and make ever-lasting memories in the beauty of Sunset Country.  Many individuals fall in love with Northwest Ontario and return each year, bringing friends and family. Some come to enjoy the camping, events, various outdoor activities, wildlife, the fresh air, or even the remarkable sunsets. But most of all visitors come to experience the incredible fishing. The Sunset Country travel region supports abundant populations of trophy-sized fish and anyone will say, once you fish Sunset Country you will never fish anywhere else.

A huge part of Sunset Country’s events are the great walleye and bass fishing tournaments that are held in the region each year. Individuals join in on the festivities for the great fishing experience, amazing cash prices or just to watch the weight-in to get a glimpse of that next trophy-sized fish! Tournaments are found in towns such as Fort Frances, Emo, Atikokan, Sioux Lookout, and Red Lake. You'll also find tournaments on famous Lake of the Woods in the towns of Sioux Narrows, Nestor Falls, Morson and to the most northern point the city of Kenora.

Nice bass caught at the Red Lake Bass Classic.Nice walleye caught at the Shaw Walleye Masters
One great tournament that happens in Sunset Country is the Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship and is held every third week in July in Fort Frances, Ontario.  This event is Canada's Largest Live Release Cash Bass Tournament, with a total of up to $172,500.00 in cash prizes and a first prize up to $50,000. The winning weight for the three day event is usually in the 55-pound range. The tournament first ran in 1995 on Rainy Lake, and attracts many of the best bass fishermen from all over North America each year. When visitors and locals are not fishing or watching the weigh-ins, they enjoy the nightly entertainment, games, and family activities that take place at the Sorting Gap Marina. 
Waiting to weigh in at the Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship.Waiting to weigh in at the Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship.
Another incredible fishing tournament is the Kenora Bass International, which happens every second week in August in Kenora, Ontario. The tournament offers up to a $30,000 first place prize and anglers here have the opportunity to fish for largemouth or smallmouths bass. Largemouth bass have won the tournament more than smallmouths over the last few years.  The winning weight for the three-day event is usually in the 45 to 50-pound range.  Tourists and locals not participating in the tournament flock down to the Kenora Harbourfront, where hundreds watch and join in on the activities under the Whitecap Pavilion. After the tournament, make sure not to miss the parade of boats through the tent!
Showing off a bass caught at the Kenora Bass International.Showing off a bass caught at the Kenora Bass International.
There are many more fishing tournaments in the region: the Shaw Walleye Masters in Dryden on Wabigoon Lake, with over $125,000 in prizes and the Emo Walleye Classic with over $36,000 in prizes. Other tournaments include Bassin' for Bucks in Sioux Narrows, Red Lake Classic Catch & Release Walleye Tournament, Sioux Lookout Walleye Weekend in Sioux Lookout. For those anglers who enjoy ice fishing, there is also the Annual Live Release Fish Tournament in February in the town of Morson on Lake of the Woods. 
With Sunset Country’s many fishing events and being so loaded with exquisite fish, anglers don’t miss the opportunity to join one of regions fishing tournaments. If you're not signed up for any of these fishing events, you're missing out on a great time. You never know… you just might win! But it not about the prizes, it’s all about the great fishing!  Go to Sunset Country's website for a complete listing of bass fishing tournaments and walleye fishing tournaments in Northwestern Ontario. 

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