all summer big pike patterns

Water Body

This summer while fishing for muskies i stumbled upon a big northern pike pattern that i’d like to share with all of you! While I was catching these larger northern pike the one common thing i was noticing was that they really liked cooler water in the peak of the summer heat. These fish came from about 10 feet or deeper in the water column where they were much farther away from the surface temps. This was obvious as we would catch muskies on the same spots with spinner baits, while casting deeper lures produced trophy pike.

Casting to the deeper and cooler water was the key to this pattern all summer long. I have never had much luck in the heat of summer catching large northern pike and now i know it’s because i was fishing far too shallow. I believe most anglers overlook the depths when it comes to mid summer northern fishing. Another good option in summer is current areas where fish will stage in the cooler water. Anywhere you can find cool water be it deep,current, or even a spring, this can produce some major results in the summer months.

The lures i have been casting consist of deeper lures like bulldogs and crank baits. Like i have said before, the reason for this is to get away from the surface heat. I work most of these lures with a pull pause or a rip and pull, but a straight retrieve can work well on any given day. Size of the lure has not mattered much as i have been throwing a lot of magunm size muskie lures to catch all of my fish.

Weather can play a very important factor when summer fishing for northern pike. When I wake up and see a rainy or colder overcast sky, those are the days i sometimes decide to gear up and hit a pike specific lake. These are the summer conditions I dream of catching my next awesome trophy. Casting hard on a day like this will usually produce very positive results in my neck of the woods! Try to take away some of this info i have gained this season, and put it to good use while catching your own LIVING LEGEND!

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Owner of Living Legends fishing guide service specializing in Muskie/pike/walleye/ and crappie trips on lake vermilion and the Ely area lakes.


  1. The same thing happened here on the Miss in Iowa about 10 years ago and might be going on now too. Where cooler water especially spring fed water came into the Miss. the pike were stacked up in those areas. The fishing was so good that the local fishing news on TV had a broadcast about it. Cooler water holds more oxygen the DNR said and that’s why they were in there. Nice northerns by the way.

  2. Nice pics and big fish AJ! Thanks for sharing the info and the wealth that the Lake Vermillion area has to offer.


  3. Hi I agree. I’ve caught nice pike at > ~ 30′ to 50′, in the heat of summer. They don’t like water > ~58 degrees I’ve found. That is if the lake has deep water forage Alewives in my case.

  4. Apologies I meant to say (30 to 45)”, not 50″. Also unlike the fortunate gentleman with the photos, I’ve only ever caught a few big pike in heat of summer. Once the temp > 58 degrees F they go deep and suspend ~ (30 to 50)’ basically chasing alewives.

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