Wild winter getaways for 2018

Get out there for beautiful backcountry trout, cattle-country coyotes and Manitoba’s monster lakers and pike

1Gord Pyzer

HALIBURTON HIGHLANDS

Central Ontario’s Haliburton Highlands are dotted with small, scenic lakes, stocked annually by the province with brook and rainbow trout, and splake. Here, you typically have the best success when you keep it old school. Drill a hole in two to five feet of water, plant a willow branch in a mound of slush and loop on a set line baited with a small, lively minnow. When the willow starts to shake, it signals trout on! The province’s online fish stocking list is a good place to start your research.

More info: www.ontario.ca/page/ontarios-fish-stocking-program

Gord Pyzer

2Travel Manitoba

LAKE ATHAPAPUSKOW

Home to Manitoba’s 64-pound provincial record laker, Lake Athapapuskow regularly produces Master Angler Award trout, many taken in the winter with white tube jigs and spoons. Ice anglers also like to use set lines baited with strips of sucker meat, fished close to the bottom. Lakers aside, you can also target trophy walleye, huge northern pike and monster whitefish. Bakers Narrows Lodge offers great accommodations and guides.

More info: 1-866-603-6390; www.bakersnarrowslodge.com

Gord Pyzer

3Eric Lamoureux

ALBERTA RANCHLANDS

Cattle country means hay, straw and feedlots—a magnet for mice. And hot on their tails? The prairie’s gorgeous, light-coloured coyotes. To take advantage, you need a combination of flat-shooting rifles, snow camo, rabbit or deer decoys, and electronic or mouth calls. Oh, and a big dollop of persistence. Make no mistake, they’re called “wily” for a reason—if a coyote sees you first, it’s game over. The Alberta Professional Outfitters Association can help plan your hunt.

More info: (780) 414-0249; www.apos.ab.ca