Joe Bucher Goes Muskie Hunting

Last week I headed for Northwest Angle Resort to fish for muskies at the Lake of the Woods in Ontario.
The legendary muskie water is huge. With 1,679 square miles, it ranges from Minnesota north of the border to Canada. It also has plenty of trophy fish measuring more than 50 inches in length.
Muskies are some of the biggest and meanest fish to swim in freshwater, and a 50-inch fish typically weighs about 40 pounds. So I brought heavy-duty gear using heavy action 8-foot rods and 80-pound test with a wire leader.
I spent most of my time casting topwater lures over rock points and reefs, working the baits at a steady, moderate pace. -Photos by: Mason Gerlach
My go-to bait is the TopRaider, a big, noisy bait that drives muskies crazy.
Finally a strike! Topwater strikes on big muskies are explosive to say the least. Wait for the fish to really take the bait before setting the hook, and a sideways sweep into the hookset is always best.
This beauty measured over 50 inches.
Topwaters are particularly good right after sunset when the lake is calm.
A twilight monster.
In muskie fishing, the devil is often in the details. Always make sure your hooks are sharp.
Lake of The Woods has a 52-inch size limit, which is designed to protect and enhance one of the world’s greatest musky fisheries. All the fish I caught were released.
Here’s another one of my best lures: the buchertail.
Another 50-incher caught on the TopRaider.
By the end of the trip I caught 16 good muskies in five days of fishing with four fish over 50 inches. It was an incredible trip.
To learn more about muskie fishing, my lures and my television show, go to To contact Northwest Angle Resort go to: Or call: 1-800-336-2963