Gord Pyzer’s 50 best tips, secrets and tactics for catching monster muskies


Tip # 21

#21  Muskies have a very low centre of gravity, so if you release them too early, they’ll tip over, sink and drown. For a proper release, hold the fish upright in the water by the wrist-like area in front of its tail, waiting until it tugs hard and swims away under its own power.

#22  Even though bluff walls concentrate the choicest bait—ciscoes, smelt, whitefish and lake trout—they are often the most overlooked locations on most muskie lakes. The best bluff walls feature shallow rock ledges that jut out, allowing muskies to rest and wait in ambush.


#23  Dock talk will only get you so far. If someone tells you about a specific muskie location, the chances are they’ve told the rest of the world and it has been hammered. I use dock talk solely to help me refine a pattern.

#24  One of my buddies is a walleye and bass guide, and every so often he’ll hit a day or two when he spots muskies chasing his hooked fish. That’s a sure sign the bite is heating up and it’s time to get out there.


#25  My heart skips a beat when I spot tobacco-like red cabbage, which grows around boulders. It’s a muskie magnet. Smaller, green-leaf cabbage is second best and coontail—at least in my neck of the woods—is a distant third. It pays to know your weeds.


#26  How many times has your fishing partner crushed you using the same lure as you? I know, too many. The likelihood is you’re letting your bait go down too deep, or not deep enough. Nothing trumps depth control, which is especially critical with glide baits.

#27  A lot of muskie anglers fish shoreline structures and cover, but I much prefer tight masses of islands clustered in the middle of a lake. I think shoreline fish are more mobile, while offshore muskies stay locked in.


#28  Most muskie anglers have two retrieve speeds—fast and faster. But some days, it’s necessary to slow down. For example, I’ve had giants slurp in a topwater lure resting peacefully on the surface. As a general rule, speed produces, but rules are made to be broken.

#29  Since points are muskie magnets, you could do worse than fish every point in a lake. The best points are typically on the windy side of the lake; in a river, they face the direct force of the current.

#30  Fishing with partners makes patterning muskies so much easier because you can search with different lure styles. Just make sure the lures complement each other in terms of the structure and cover. Fishing a gnarly weedy flat, for example, is not the time to pitch a Bondy Bait.