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She Loves to Fish: Summertime fishing in Ontario and Quebec

Summer is officially here and I couldn’t be happier for my favourite season to arrive! This time of year holds endless fishing opportunities yet poses a big issue … What to fish for?! I can’t think of a better problem to have.

 

Ashley Rae bass

 

Each year I aim to spend time targeting multiple species and as much time on the water as possible. Why wait months for just one species when we have so many to chase? Since my last blog post (my saltwater kayaking trip), I have been busy chasing pike, gar, largemouth and smallmouth bass.

Longnose gar have become a favorite since I began chasing them in my kayak a couple years ago. I’ve owed my gar success to the Rapala X-Raps (especially the Glass Ghost colour in size 4 or 6). When targeting gar, it’s important to use lures or flies with smaller hooks due to the narrow and bony mouths on a gar. Larger hooks are overkill and will not penetrate their beak properly, which can result in frustration and losing fish. In the spring and early summer, gar can be found in the shallow warm water on flats, in heavy weed cover, or spawning on rocks and structure.

 

Ashley Rae gar

My best method is sight fishing and hunting them in the shallows. When I spot a gar, I cast beyond it and work the lure parallel to it’s body. The X-Raps are great because they suspend yet don’t go down too deep. Getting the lure right in their face and pulling it away seems to be something they can’t resist, and it’s pretty incredible watching them swipe at it and then eat it! When hooked, gar will go BALLISTIC putting on a full show! Gloves and an appropriately sized landing net make it much easier and safer.
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