Lake Trout

Salvelinus Namaycush

The lake trout really isn’t a trout at all. Technically it’s a char, like the arctic char, Dolly Varden or brook trout. But what’s in a name.

The laker is a remarkable game fish, probably the hardest fighting of all freshwater fish, including peacock bass and tiger fish. Trout have incredible stamina. The laker’s deeply forked tail provides it with the tool for tremendous speed. It makes a brown trout or black bass seem like slugs. With that speed lake trout can catch just about whatever they want with their primary forage being lake cisco and whitefish. Many trophy lakers have been caught on Scott with the tails of whitefish still sticking out of their mouths. Don’t confuse lake trout with the more delicate rainbow or cutthroat trout. These are meat eaters. Small lakers (under 20″) do feed primarily on zooplankton, invertebrates and insects as well as small bait fish, but the big ones go after substantial prey.

Lake trout in the far north develop beautiful markings when they approach the September spawning period. The fin edges of males turn a bright white and both males and females change color dramatically. The basic silver-sided trout of summer add bright red/orange fish and usually get a darker brown/gold appearance with bright spots. They are a show fish in fall.

The trout at Scott and other high latitude lakes do not spawn every year. Only about a third of the females spawn every year with a typical female spawning only every two to four years. That’s why in the shallow spawning reefs large numbers of smaller males will be swarming the rocks looking for fewer number of females. On Scott most of the spawning (this has been observed) occurs in the second week of September on rocky reefs with a depth of only one to three feet. It’s a wild time to fish for lakers. Actually, anytime is a great time to catch these magnificent northern fish.

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Portion of entire body made up of trout head

Oldest trout on record (years)

Largest trout caught at Scott (inches)

Gear for Trophy Lake Trout Fishing

For big trout you want BIG baits: Husky and Husky Jr., Daredevils, 2-4 ounce jigs and super sized deep divers. The Flat Fish T- 60, or the Largest Kwick Fish sort through the smaller trout. Anything with pink and pearl is a good choice for our trout. We have a good selection of these big boys in the tackle shop at camp. We also have bulk mono in a range of weights. Consider respooling at least once during your stay; the rocks are very hard on any line. Make sure your leaders (especially the snaps) are tough. We like the cross-lock snaps in heavy sizes.

I had an unbelievable experience. I enjoyed the trip so much. I also loved how social it is. Everyone knows who you are.

Ed Reisdorf

All About Trout

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