Overview of Northwest Territories Fishing
Visit the lodges that currently hold the world records for the largest lake trout, arctic char, and arctic grayling. For over 60 years, this outfitter has offered incredible fishing on Great Bear Lake and Great Slave Lake, as well as Tree River, in the Northwest Territories of Canada.
Pick from one of four lodges to spend your time in the Arctic. Each has world-class fishing that is sure to amaze. Your trip will be fully guided and hosted in rustic lodging.
The first lodge on Great Bear Lake provides you with unparalleled access to some of the best lake trout, arctic grayling, and pike fishing in the world. Only a lucky 300 anglers fish in this area per year. This lodge keeps two turbine Otters at the lodge, so it also offers rare access to arctic char through fly-outs to other renowned waters such as the Tree River. As you are in a remote area, don’t be surprised if you find caribou, moose, grizzly bears, muskox, or century-old teepees as you explore the area.
Also set on the Great Bear Lake, there is a reason they call this lodge “Trophy Lodge.” This is where you will fish for 5-star lake trout, 4-star arctic grayling, 4-star northern pike (this is the best area for it on the lake), trophy grayling, and lake trout. This lodge has a short opening span, so getting a coveted spot here is a treat. This hotel-style lodge is very remote, so you will need to plan to spend a full 7 days here.
The third lodge is set on the Taltheilei Narrows of the Great Slave Lake. Famed through the generations by the local people, this area is known for trophy lake trout (up to 60lbs!), arctic grayling, and northern pike. Let’s see if you can real in the monsters that inhabit this lake! A perk of this lodge is that you can catch trophy fish within view of the lodge, and you can catch lots of them.
An incredible bonus to staying at the lodge on Great Bear lake is the optional overnight excursion to Tree River. This is an incredibly popular overnight for past guests who sing this area’s praises year after year. This lodge has the best fly-out excursions of any of the lodges. The beauty of the tundra will take your breath away as you fly. Should you want to explore on foot, there are some pools that you can take amazing hikes to. All fishing here is conducted from the banks of the river for world-class arctic char.
Lake Trout: Lurking in the depths below, shadowy figures cruise. Lakers attack their prey with alarming speed and strength. Their numbers are great, these massive trout grow to unimaginable sizes. Can you reel one in?
There are two basic techniques to catch lake trout that the guides use: trolling and jigging. Both lakes use a combination of techniques, but it is safe to say that at Slave there is more jigging than trolling, while at Bear there you predominantly troll for lake trout. It is ultimately up to you which type of fishing method you prefer, but keep in mind the preferred techniques of each lake when deciding on which of the lodges you are going to experience.
There is another often overlooked method of targeting lake trout and that is fly fishing. Most fly fishermen do not have lake trout on their radar as a target species, as lake trout are normally found in the deepest, coldest parts of southern lakes. Fishing for lake trout up north is a different ballgame, as the preferred “cold water” temperature for the lake trout is actually what they call “warm water”, so the fish are at the top of the water column.
Arctic Char: Under the pristine blue rapids and rifles of Tree River, massive green-back Char skulk. As they negotiate the current, scouring for food, one might stumble upon your irresistible fly and take it for a run.
Arctic Grayling: Some love the way a winged Arctic Grayling will treat a well-presented dry fly. Others are fascinated by its rarity and appearance. Either way, this fish provides ample action for a great light tackle experience.
Mepp’s spinners, Panther Martin, etc. in sizes #0 to #3 are preferred. Red and Gold are a favorite, non-dressed, but with different surface and daylight conditions they may hit other colors like blue, watermelon, orange, etc.
Jigs, small, 1/16 oz. to 1/8 oz. grub tails, paddle tails, puddle jumper tails. Sometimes these “sailfish of the north” are in the mood to hit various insect imitations or minnow imitations. Colors can range from white to black but Brown, purple, gold, and dark red can work well too.
Spoons, small ½”, Eppinger little delve 1/8 oz. Various colors, dark orange, dark green, black w/orange, blue, etc. Minnow imitations like phoebe’s and super duper’s may work well too.
Gear: All guests fishing at any of the lodges are welcome to bring their own gear, however, it is not necessary. There is an excellent supply of the preferred rods and reels for guests to use, and they have tackle shops at the lodges where tackle can be purchased at a very reasonable rate.
Except for Tree River Lodge, each of the lodges is equipped with a Red Seal chef, a fully stocked bar, fireplace, conference room, pool table, tackle shop, internet access, meeting facilities, 24-hr electricity, and private cabins with attached bathrooms.
The Lodge on Great Bear Lake: The main lodge has casual sitting areas with a stone fireplace. Here you will enjoy recapping your day of fishing. The relaxed dining room has a camp feel to it with picnic tables throughout where your group can sit together or sit with new friends. Enjoy your meals while looking out over the lake. The cabins are basic with twin beds, a chest of drawers, and a small, attached bathroom.
This rustic lodge can host up to 44 guests.
The Lodge on Great Bear Lake #2: The trophy lodge is the most rustic of the three main lodges. The sitting rooms are made up of leather office chairs that circle a stone fireplace. Your group will enjoy playing pool during your downtime while looking out of the lake. This lodge is a “hotel style” lodge, meaning there are no individual cabins, all rooms are hosted under the same roof. The beach of Ford Bay is just steps from the lodge, so you can put on your waders and have some excellent fishing from the shallow waters of the shore.
This rustic lodge can host up to 22 guests.
The Lodge on Great Slave Lake: This lodge is slightly more upscale than the Great Bear Lake lodge, but it has the same rustic feel to it. Enjoy sitting in the leather chairs in front of the stone fireplace as you look out over the lake. The dining room has the same camp-like feel with large tables meant for encouraging comradery over meals. The cabins can host twin beds or queen beds, have a dresser, and have a small, attached bathroom.
This rustic lodge can host up to 44 guests.
The Lodge on Tree River: Go off the grid at Tree River Lodge. This lodge can be described as basic rustic. The cabins here are made up of 4 twin beds. These cabins are extremely basic. Enjoy hearty meals such as turkey dinners with dinner rolls. The camp looks out over the Tree River, providing breathtaking views.
Length of Stay / Itinerary
Great Bear Lake Lodge: This lodge books 7-day trips with the option of add-on excursions to the Tree River Lodge within the 7 days. They do have a limited number of 4-days trip available during select weeks of the season.
Great Slave Lake Lodge: This lodge has openings for 3-, 4-, and 7-day trips with the option of add-on excursions to the Tree River lodge within your trip.
Trophy Lodge: This lodge only offers 7-day trips with the option of add-on excursions to the Tree River Lodge within the 7 days.
Tree River Lodge: While this lodge usually hosts guests for one night during their time at another lodge, they have added a special new trip opportunity. This is a one-week per year opportunity and is incredibly exclusive. Please call us for more details on the date of the upcoming year’s trip.
Internet & Communications
Wifi is available at the Great Bear Lake Lodge, Great Slave Lake Lodge, and Trophy Lodge. Cell service is spotty.
Pricing ranges from $2,895 – $7,295 based on lodge choice and length of trip. Please call us for more details based on your interests.
Trip Insurance & Cancellation Info
“Trip insurance is highly recommended to protect your investment on this trip. We will assist you with trip insurance upon booking. See links at the bottom of this page for the two providers we suggest for our clients.
Antlers & Anglers Worldwide, LLC confirmation and refund policy:
If your trip is more than 90 days out from date of departure, a 50% non-refundable deposit confirms your reservation and must be received within 10 days of booking to confirm your dates. All trips must be paid in full at least 90 days prior to the departure date. If your trip date is within 90 days, FULL payment for the trip is required. All payments to Antlers & Anglers Worldwide, LLC are non-refundable. Should you need to reschedule or cancel your trip, we will do everything in our power to assist you in finding a suitable substitute or transferring your dates per the lodge/providers/government requirements. Trip insurance protects your investment!”