Northern Pike Fishing Tactics & Techniques on Lac Seul:
Small to medium size Northern Pike generally stay in thick weeds and close to shore. They will stick to the back of bays where water warms up quickly with the morning sun and they have lots of weeds to hide in.
You can find big Trophy Northern Pike in the back of bays and in thick weeds as well but generally the really large Northern Pike are more likely to hang around points leading into bays, narrows between islands or in river current. They need breathing room and like to ambush bigger prey like Walleyes and Bass. They like to hang around areas where Walleyes and Bass are migrating through.
Locations on Lac Seul:
Lac Seul's Northern Pike have giant Muskie to compete with. This changes things a little. Muskie behavior plays a big roll in Pike behavior.
Muskie are claustrophobic. They like to stay in areas where weeds and shallow bays are to their back but face the open lake. Rocky points facing the open lake and open water shoals are where Muskie hunt down Bass and Walleyes. The Muskie will also go out into open water and hunt down deep for Cisco, lake Herring, Suckers and Whitefish. Where does this leave the Northern Pike? In a lake like Lac Seul, you will find the large Northern Pike hanging around shoals and rocky points that do not face the open lake. Lets say there is a shallow weedy bay. There are two rocky points at the mouth of the bay but out in front of the bay is a big island. With the island being there, it's the perfect place for Northern Pike. If the island were not there, most likely a big Muskie would claim the territory.
This is not carved in stone but a simple thing to remember is: If you see the other side of the lake, you're in Muskie territory. If you are between something and shore, you're in Pike territory.
Lures & Flies:
Northern Pike hit just about anything that moves. The best lures to use are lures that come out of the fish's mouth easily without harming the fish like Dardevle and Spinner baits. Mind you, over the last 30 years so many people have been using Dardevles for Pike fishing that many Pike have learned to stay away from them on some lakes. They are still considered the top Pike lure by most people. Many belive the red-&-silver Dardevles works best in clear water while the yellow-five-of-diamonds Dardevles work best in murky water. Dardevles have also been called DareDevils but the proper spelling is Dardevle.
Below is a list of good Pike lures.
Pike Casting Lures:
Johnson Silver Minnow
Williams Weedless Pike Spoon
Tinsel Tail Spinner
Large Mepps Bucktails
Pike Trolling Lures:
J-ll Jointed Rapalas
J-13 Deeper Jointed Rapalas
Large Mepps Bucktails
Lucky Strike Wooden Muskie Plugs
Hedon Muskie Plugs
Top-Water Using a Spook
Top-Water fishing for Northern Pike with a Heddon Spook is an art form that seems to have been lost and needs to be carried on to the younger generation. There is no fishing method for Pike that is more exciting then Working the surface with a Spook and getting those Monster Pike splashing at the surface. Over the years I have seen people try to fish with Spooks and they just can't get it right so we are going to show you the most exciting Pike fishing method known.
1st) You have to cast your Spook out. The perfect spot to cast a Spook is over-top a thick weed bed that is just under the surface, in between patches of lily pads or along side Bulrushes. The whole purpose is to be able to fish in places that are not practical for other lures.
2nd) Once your Spook hits the surface, don't start reeling in yet. Give it a couple of yanks so it makes splashes on the surface like a wounded frog or bird. Many times the Pike will hit the Spook before you start reeling in.
3rd) This the tricky part. You have to hold your rod up as high as you can and pull the line tight so your fishing line is not in the water or even touching the surface. Your line has to be out of the water or the Spook will not make the proper motion when you reel it in.
Start to reel in slowly at a constant speed. While reeling in you have to jerk your rod every second. When you jerk your rod, the Spook will slide to one side. When you jerk it again, it should slide to the other side in a crisscrossing motion. You have to get a rhythm going. As you are reeling in, your Spook splashes from side-to side and this drives the Pike crazy.
Below is an animation showing the motion that your Spook should be exhibiting.