Lake whitefish are common throughout Canada and the Northern United States. There is nothing complicated about gearing up for lake whitefish. Here are the best lakes to catch lake whitefish in Washington State. Eggs, wax worms, small pieces of nightcrawler and even cocktail shrimp from the grocery store will work. It’s important to jig your lure or bait as close to the bottom as possible and work it slowly. Although, using heavy gear doesn’t mean you can horse these fish in. It didn’t take long for these salmon relatives to migrate through connected waterways into eastern Washington. Our favorite way to cook up winter time lake whitefish is in the smoker. Lake whitefish are known to be quite actively feeding at night, which makes night time one of the best times to catch them. The current state record is 6.18 pounds caught in Rufus Woods Reservoir and bigger fish are still out there. A good inline spinner can also be effective, especially when the whitefish are feeding in shallower waters. Fishing for lake whitefish is a year-round opportunity on most of the lakes we mentioned in this article. They will commonly eat clams, snails, mussels, shrimp, larvae, mayflies, midges, and small fish. It has a maximum depth of 105 feet. Spinning gear is all you really need to catch lake whitefish. Our boats are set up for trolling, jigging or casting. As you get further into the season the whitefish will begin to move into deeper sections of water. Lake Whitefish Equipment Recommendations The lake also ha… Monofilament line is widely used for catching whitefish. Captain Paul along with his team of expert guides aim to make your adventure the most memorable adventure of your vacation. Finding them requires a good fish finder. In early winter you can still find whitefish near their spawning grounds near the bottom-feeding on whatever they can find (usually eggs). Generally, lake whitefish are considered a safe and healthy choice for eating without restrictions. Mainly because they are most often in 30 feet of water or more and you need to use a fish finder to get on top of them. The meat is at its prime during winter when the flesh is firmer and fattier than other times of the year. Whitefish Lake is located in the north Flathead Valley of northwest Montana. Walleye, bass, trout and panfish steal the show throughout most of the year, especially in the Columbia Basin. Check out this WDFW video on summertime whitefish tactics and locations. This site also participates in other affiliate programs and is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies. Lake whitefish are a popular sportfish to target that are found throughout the northern United States and parts of Canada. Use a size 8 or 10 hook and leave the hook point slightly exposed to ensure better hook ups. Keep in mind that these fish tend to hold in deep water near the bottom. Be sure to check the Department of Health fish consumption advisories before fishing. Another popular lure for targeting whitefish is the tried and true jig. Look for the red buoys if you’re fishing from a boat or fish anywhere along the rip-rap bank from shore. Regardless of the time of year, whitefish prefer to stick close to the bottom. Whitefish is known for its’ ski resorts. Always consult the fishing regulations for the area you intend to fish for specific angling rules. Our favorite year round setup for lake whitefish is a 6’ or 6’ 6” medium-light spinning rod and reel spooled with 10 pound braid and 4 feet of 6 pound test fluorocarbon leader. They reside in deeper, cool, oxygenated lakes. Most lake whitefish average 3 to 4 pounds with a few pushing 6 pounds or more so you’ll have plenty of tasty meat. It’s no wonder why even physicians are prescribing time spent in … They also have a forked tail. In our high-paced modern world, finding time to relax seems to be one of the last things on the priority list for so many of us. Most lake whitefish average 3 to 4 pounds with a few pushing 6 pounds or more so you’ll have plenty of tasty meat. Some anglers will opt for braided or fluorocarbon lines as well. Visitors have access to the lake from a public boat landing, one public land or park within 1000 feet of the lake (Sand Lake Rearing Station). They are also exceptionally soft bitters which means sensitivity is key in detecting strikes. Spring can be a difficult time to catch whitefish if you’re not looking in the right areas. If you get too overexcited and set your hook too aggressively you could end up tearing your hook right out of their mouth. As avid anglers, Joshua and Kendle spend their days exploring the waters of the Pacific Northwest and aim to teach others the joy of fishing. The bite of whitefish is very light so you need to make sure that your rod has a sensitive tip that will allow you to feel their bite. Even so, the majority of fishing pressure is on just a handful of popular gamefish species. Look for them in areas with less than 25 feet of water. Use subtle movements to grab their attention. Slower retrieves tend to work best. This combo lets you experience the fight while still having enough backbone to hoist them up from the depths. Fishing with bait is a highly effective method for catching lake whitefish as well. Sometimes live bait is the best choice for catching whitefish or any other fish for that matter. Usually, this occurs when the water temperatures fall below 45 degrees F. They prefer to spawn in shallow rocky areas that are near the shores of lakes. Just about any rod and reel combo will work. Throughout most of the year lake whitefish occupy deeper water where they suspend near the bottom in large schools. You’ll almost always be vertically jigging for lake whitefish when fishing from a boat. Lake whitefish is excellent baked, fried, smoked or canned. However the fishing in the lake is a well kept secret, and fishing is nothing short of awesome. Amazingly, it is still not crowded with anglers. In some areas, they may reside in brackish waters, but this is not as common. Try the Lind Coulee and Frenchman Hills Wasteway inlets on Potholes. A freshwater fishing license is all you need to target these fish and you can buy one on the WDFW website or in person at an authorized license dealer, including Walmart and sporting goods stores. Real world tips and information about all things fishing. Lake whitefish are known to be quite actively feeding at night, which makes night time one of the best times to catch them. They are prized as a commercial fish due to their delicate flavor, but also make a great gamefish for recreational anglers as well. They will come out from their deeper waters to feed, which presents a great opportunity to target them. Bring a good jacket and portable heater if you have one because it will be cold. For those of you looking to haul in meat with efficiency, step it up to a medium weight spinning rod and 10 pound test. As for fishing line, use monofilament or braid. They tend to eat anything that is near the bottom of the lake. Again, use a fish finder to locate large schools suspended near the bottom in mid-lake basins. On Billy Clapp, head north towards Summer Falls. With mounting pressures both financial and familial, people put their vacation needs on the back burner, placing schooling, careers, politics, volunteering, or caregiving ahead of individual needs. Often they will migrate into rivers and streams. Things get a little easier for both boat and bank anglers in the winter when lake whitefish spawn. You can also find emergency fishing closures on the WDFW website. 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