Dog Lake is one of the best Lake Trout lakes in Ontario. The main lake is over 13,000 acres with depths reaching 245 feet deep. It's also a lake with a classic Canadian Shield structure thus there are hundreds of islands, sunken reefs and shoals with deep drop-offs. These are the perfect conditions for Lake Trout.
With Lake Trout you just never know what size you will get. In the spring the Lake Trout are shallow and many guests catch Lake Trout while fishing for Walleye. They can be anywhere from 2 to 25 pounds. It's a really nice surprise hooking into a big Lake Trout while Walleye fishing and every spring it happens to a number of our guests. For some reason not many guests come to Dog Lake for serious Lake Trout Fishing during the summer. Many people think that after early spring the Lake Trout take off to the deepest part of the lake and are not accessible. Some people just do not enjoy traditional methods of Lake Trout fishing such as downriggers or using heavy trolling rods and steel wire line. We don't blame them. There are effective ways to catch Lakers in the heat of the summer with just your walleye stick and 6 or 8-pound test line.
In Dog Lake, depending on how much wind and rain there is during the summer, the thermalcline can be anywhere from 45 to 65 feet deep. The Lake Trout tend to stay right above the thermalcline as that's where the oxygen to coldest water ratio is at it's best. Generally with normal summer conditions the 50-foot depth is the magic spot for Lake Trout. They will stay in the 50-foot range but tend to stay close to drop-offs and structure because that's where the baitfish are. In the evening they do take short missions into shallower water if that's where the baitfish are. If you have a smaller motor like a 9.9hp or 15hp, all you need is your walleye or pike rod, a 3-way swivel, a 2 oz weight and a light shinny lure.
You just tie two 2-foot lead lines from the 3-way swivel to the sinker and the lure. Get a troll going and slowly drop your line until it hits bottom in the 50-foot range and keep trolling. If you have a bigger motor like a 20 to 25-hp, you will have to back troll, as forward trolling would be too fast. With even bigger motors you would need to use downriggers, which are not near as fun as using a 3-way swivel.
Lake Trout can be a frustrating fish to fish for, which is why not too many people specifically target them. They turn on and off like a light switch. Daybreak to about 10:00 am, 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm and then later during the last 2 hours of light are the best times to catch Lake Trout. They also hit best on calm sunny days with high pressure.
How many Lake Trout you catch is impossible to predict. You could go three days without catching one and then catch 5 in an hour. You just have to try during the best times and spend the rest of the day fishing for other species. In Dog Lake there are lots of smaller good eating size Lake Trout in the 2 to 4-pound range. Dog Lake also has a reputation for having monster size Lakers. Every year word gets out of someone hooking into a 30 to 35-pound monster. There are lots in the lake. We know this because on really hot days when a small micro-storm goes through and drops cold rain on the surface of the lake, giant Lake Trout come right up to the surface and swim along the surface with their fins sticking out of the water like sharks. This is a rare spectacle that only last about 5 minutes.