Hardwater kickoff—Lyons Lake

I. Love. Trout fishing. If you’ve read my past posts, this isn’t news. I’ve shared some posts on open-water trout tactics, but it’s winter now—the best time of year. There’s something about ice fishing I can’t get enough of. It’s likely the only activity that helps me enjoy these brutal Manitoban winters.

As soon as I was able, I threw my gear in the car and headed out to Lyons Lake Manitoba, just west of the Ontario border. This lake is a popular spot for year-round rainbows. It’s heavily fished, but the stocking efforts seem to match the demand. There’s no shortage of small trout here, and there are certainly some monsters lurking about.

This time out was a little slower than usual, with only six fish landed. Still, that was plenty to keep me entertained. Enjoy the highlights in the video above, and read on for some trout tips!

How to catch rainbow trout

Depth

When I fish Lyons Lake, I stick to relatively shallow water, especially if the barometric pressure is low that day. You don’t have to walk far onto Lyons to get into fish. I usually drill a line of holes on a slope from three to 10 feet of water. There’s plenty of cabbage and other structure at these depths, and they almost always hold fish. If you’re new to the lake, start around the main casting platform next to the parking lot.

Tackle

Deadstick: I use a 1/8- ounce bullet weight slip-sinker setup with a size-six octopus hook. Think of a tiny catfish rig. I load the hook up with some floating trout dough, such as Berkley Rainbow Candy bait and let the dough float about 1.5 feet above the bottom.

From there I loosen my drag completely. When the line starts peeling, I snug up the drag and start reeling. The hook sets itself. This is by far the most effective method for me at Lyons Lake—likely because hatchery trout are used to eating artificial baits.

Jigging rod: My go-to lure is a small PK Spoon. Flicking that baby up and down the water column usually does the trick. Small—I mean really small—jigs with artificial nymphs or grubs work too, but you might find yourself catching Lyons Lake’s stunted perch instead of the target species.

Get in touch!

Head to my fishing spots page if you need a map to Lyons Lake. If you head east on the Trans-Canada Highway, you can’t miss it!

If you need more pointers on how to catch rainbow trout at Lyons Lake, drop me a line and I’ll set you in the right direction! Happy fishing!

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