In addition to the opportunities on Eagle Lake for lake trout fishing, there is access via short portages, creek travel by boat, and 4wd to other remote trout lakes. During winter and early spring, until water temperatures climb over 50°F, trout are scattered over much of Eagle Lake but are particularly concentrated in the northern half. Lakers can be caught within sight of camp. As the water warms, there is a gradual migration towards deep holes where the trout comfortably spend the warm water months. During this time, from ice-out to when water temperatures reach 55°F, lake trout roam and feed on the rocky shorelines, points, and in narrow areas where currents are created. Cruising depths range from 10-20’, whether on the edge of a structure or over deep water. During this time, long line trolling with inline planer boards paired with spoons such as Cleos, Sutton, and lil Wolfies are effective. Use minnow baits such as Yozuris and Rapalas along with spinner rigs with sucker strips. These typically boat the most fish while covering lots of area. By mid-June, when surface temperatures approach 60°F, the majority of the population will be found from Gilberts Stretch to Trout Hole #2 in the Western Arm as well as in Portage bay until after turnover in October.
Trolling is still very effective, but most so at deeper depths using down riggers and weighted 3 ways. Our preference are Off Shore snap weights that range from 4 to 8 oz. Generally, the best depths are 55-80’. Steep rock cliffs and drop offs, the edges of deep holes and over the top of deep humps are good places to start. Trout are not always bottom orientated, they will sometimes suspend at depths of about 55-65’. When you find them here they are usually feeding. Look for baitfish; where you find them will tell you what depth you should be fishing. Spoons, especially those 5/8 to ¾ Cleos, 4-6” silver Suttons, Forage Minnows, flutter spoons, Rattle Traps, cowbells with a spoon, minnow bait, or sucker strip, Rapalas, and Youzuris are effective. Jigging can be effective in the same areas as those you would troll as well as any time you find concentrated schools of fish. White ½- ¾ oz. tube jigs, big white or chart flukes, and Gulp on Owner jigs ½-1 oz., Kastmsters, Swedish Pimples, ¾-1 oz. white or chart jigs with 4-5” suckers or sucker fillet strips are standard offerings. Try drop shotting a #2 hook 24-30” above your jig or spoon and put on a 3-5” sucker strip fillet. Some days this will even out-produce the jig. If there’s Whitefish around, shorten the strip to 1 ½-2” for bonus catches. Head to the bottom, bounce it 4-5 times, lift it up 12-18” and then snap jig 7-8 times. Then, reel up 5-6’ quickly. Repeat this jig sequence until you get below the boat, then drop to the bottom and repeat. Using this method, you can catch fish at all depths, even those chasing baits up from deeper depths. You may even see them flash below the boat when they strike.
Trout are fall spawners and the season closes on Sept 30th. On those years when water temperatures drop to about 50°F before the close of the season, you’ll find some fantastic shallow water casting opportunities as the fish move up towards shallow reefs to spawn. Make long casts with spoons and crankbaits. Fish will be scattered and roaming in small groups by the tops of shallow reefs and the tapering shelves of rocky shorelines. When you time it right, multiple fish may chase the lures, flashing and darting until hook up. Sometimes you will actually be able to cast at rolling, splashing fish.