The muskie fishing is great on Lake of the Woods and it is no different in the Sioux Narrows area. The only main difference here is that the waters are clearer, which will make catching a muskie a little more difficult. You may see plenty as they follow your lures up to the boat, but most anglers report a lot less boat side bites from muskie in the clear water. Some anglers go to 100 pound fluorocarbon leaders instead of the steel leaders, which can help, although, a big muskie may still bite through 100 pound line. The anglers that tend to do better will be the ones that fish deeper and make longer casts. This area has plenty of great muskie spots with lots of deep water, islands, bays, vegetation and rocks.
Whitefish Bay is right where Sioux Narrows is located. Most anglers will stay in Whitefish Bay if they are targeting muskie. The deep, clear waters offer plenty of good spots for muskie and they can be caught here all summer and fall.
Catch Big Muskie
Some very big muskie are caught in this part of the lake. The deep, clear water is home to a lot of big muskie. You may not catch many of them here, but there is a good chance of them being big fish when you do get bit.
Fishing the Bays
Whitefish Bay is a huge bay and there are tons of smaller bays within this bay. There are so many different bays with rocks, vegetation, some have shallower water and some will have some deep water too. Muskie can be found in these bays all summer and fall.
Fishing the Drop-offs
Because there area has so much deep water, the drop-offs don’t really stand out here since you are going to find nice drop-offs everywhere. Muskie will still relate to the drop-offs though, so you’re going to want to find some other things that may help draw muskie to an area. A deep weed line, a rock pile or just finding some areas with good amounts of bait on the fish finder could result in muskie being in these areas.
Fishing the Points
There are a lot of nice points to fish on this part of the lake. Smallmouth bass will be all over the rocky points with some northern pike too. Muskie will move into these areas as well, so these are good pieces of structure to fish.
Fishing the Islands
There are so many islands here that you can easily just fish islands and you’ll have new spots to fish every single day of your trip. Find some weeds, rocks and some nice drop-offs around these islands and you may find some muskie here.
Fishing the Reefs
There are plenty of reefs to fish in Whitefish Bay. Many muskie can be found around the reefs in the summer. Fish the reefs that have access to deep water nearby and you’ll have a better chance to find some of these big fish on this offshore structure.
Fishing the Weeds
With all the deep water here, you’re going to have to move into the bays to find most of the weed growth here. The weeds can grow a lot deeper here due to the water being so clear, however, the cold waters take a while to warm up compared to other parts of the lake. On other parts of the lake, the deeper weed lines will form faster, but by mid-summer, there are plenty of nice deeper weed lines to target for muskie.
Using Leaders for Muskie
Muskie have some serious teeth. Use quality steel leaders to avoid bite-offs. If you are fishing clear water, you may need to go with a fluorocarbon leader to get bit. Most anglers will not go any lighter than 100 lb. fluorocarbon for muskie and don’t be shocked if you lose a big fish due to a bite-off. Some anglers go as heavy as 140 to 150 pound fluorocarbon. Ideally, you want to be as stealthy as you can so you can get more bites, but if you go too light with the fluorocarbon, you risk losing fish and possibly killing some big fish due to the lures getting stuck in their mouths.
Best Baits for Muskie
There are many types of baits to target muskie. Anglers don’t have as many options when using live baits since many of the fish that muskie eat can not be used as bait. Suckers and big chubs are usually the best options for most anglers that want to use live bait. For artificial lures, there are a variety of big baits to throw. Most anglers fish with bucktail spinners, some type of swimbait, topwater lure or jerkbait when chasing muskie.
There aren’t too many different rigs for muskie fishing because you only have so many options for throwing some of the gigantic baits needed. Also, most anglers use lures for muskie or big sucker minnows, so you really don’t need too many rigs to target muskie. However, there are still several rigs you should know about, especially if you are going to be using live bait.
Our muskie fishing section has tons of tips on the best lures, live baits, where to catch them and how to catch them.