ZANDERLAND - Species - Pike


Tampere Region - Finland

Fly-Fishing for pike
Winter pike with Honkanen Fishing Trips

Giant pike from lakes

Videos: Ruovesi Näsijärvi Tarjannevesi Längelmävesi  
Lake Rautavesi
Pike can be found in all waters and the main forms of fishing pike during the open-water fishing season are spinning and trolling. The season starts in May and continues without a break until November.

One of the two best seasons is in early summer after spawning, before the waters warm up completely. On the more shallow lakes of the Tampere Region, fishing trips already start to pay off in early May, while the best season on deeper lakes begins in late May.
Early summer pike from shallow waters
The best hot spots for big pike in the early season can be found close to their spawning bays at about 3–5 metres. Famished after spawning, big predators snap eagerly at lures offered by spin anglers at the right time and in the right place. Trolling in the same areas is also efficient. You may be in for the fight of your life with a strong, metre-long whopper.

With its light nights, June is a very good pike fishing season, when your chances of catching big pike are high.

Many giant pike have also been caught in early July. As the waters continue to warm up, big pike dive deeper, where they are more difficult to find. You can still catch smaller pike tiddlers by spinning and a big one may surprise you once in a while, especially when trolling with sinkers, divers or weighted lures. During hot spells in July, big pike sometimes surface over deep mid-lake waters and the hardest bite may come in the middle of the night when trolling zander.

Good spinning spots in summer include reedy bays and shallows growing pondweed and other water plants.
Lake Ruovesi
Autumn pike prowl at the edges of deep waters
The whole of autumn starting in August is a very potential pike season. The waters start to cool gradually and the nights grow longer. Many August evenings have seen fishing logs filled with entries detailing good catches of pike.

The other best season of the year for fishing big pike starts in late September, continuing through to the end of October. In autumn, trollers in pursuit of big pike should scout out the shorelines and shoals close to deep waters in particular. Big pike strike trollers’ plugs, spoons and baitfish rigs, preferably close to the bottom at 5–10 metres or at mid-depth, which means that it’s worth using sinkers and deep-diving plugs.

On large lakes, the pike season continues through to November, when a spin angler can again catch a big one in shallow waters as the shores are already covered with a thin crust of ice.

Although pike bite all day long, their best feeding time varies according to the season. In spring and summer, pike are most active early in the mornings and in the evenings.

In the autumn, the peak bite time is usually at around noon. The moments of dusk as the sun sets sometimes also see quite a voracious feeding time.

Pike are rewarding targets in that they bite at lures virtually around the clock, when the mood strikes them. So, it’s always a good time to go looking for pike.
Plenty of hot spots on offer
Anglers in pursuit of big pike can find many dream spots in the major lakes of the Tampere Region. By way of example, there are plenty of hot spots in the northern part of the region, within the deep and fragmented 200 km2 water route between Virrat, Vilppula and Ruovesi, known as the Lake Iso-Tarjannevesi area.

The legendary Paloselkä area in Vilppula was the most famous big pike area in Finland in the 1990’s, more or less yielding over 10-kilo fish more than all the other lakes combined. The Vilppula Route still offers good opportunities to catch pike weighing 5–10 kg or even more.

Other noteworthy places to pursue big pike include the Toutonen area of Lake Pyhäjärvi in Lempäälä, Lake Längelmävesi, Lakes Kulovesi and Rautavesi in Vammala and Lake Kyrösjärvi in Ikaalinen. By way of example, one fishing party caught two over 10-kilo pike on the Vilppula Route in July 2005. A couple of years ago on Lake Längelmävesi, in turn, a troller managed to catch as many as three 9–10 kg pike within the space of two weeks!

You can also find big pike in many medium-sized and smallish lakes.
The big ones are waiting
A typical lake-dwelling pike weighs between 0.5 and 3 kilos. In the best waters, catching a pike weighing 3 to 5 kilos is a frequent, though not quite a daily occurrence. Anglers also catch plenty of 5–10 kg specimens in different water areas every year. Ensnaring a more than 10-kilo giant requires a healthy amount of luck.

Even though pike are not exactly shy of sunshine, their appetite is often most ravenous in cloudy weather. A few drops of rain every now and then also help.

Pike are sought using various plugs, spoons and spinners. Pike have a ravenous appetite and they also snap eagerly at baitfish rigs, weighted lures, jigs – basically, almost any type of lure. Although many anglers favour shortish, fat-bodied plugs, larger plugs measuring 13 to 18 cm are the most popular models used to pursue big pike.