A Wicked Bite

A Wicked Bite
Photographed by Brian Grossenbacher
Meet Esox luscius, the northern pike, frozen in mid-stalk a second before an acceleration ends in a wicked bite. It’s a show of fearless predation. And in Canada’s Scott Lake, on the border of Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories, you see the entire show: spotting a target and dropping a fly in front of a fish; noticing that slight turn of the head that tells you the game is on; watching the stealthy, deadly stalk and the final rush; and then dealing with the bend in your rod and a fish that wants to throw the hook.

Note: Pike are found around the globe from roughly the 40th parallel to the 70th. Early season is best for sight fishing in shallow water. In the northern states, ranging from Maine to Montana, that translates to late April, May and early June. As you move up the map into northern Ontario, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, that shallow-water season extends well into July and on sunny days even into August. During fall pike move to deeper water, but you can still blind cast to them.

SPECS: Nikon D4; 70-200mm f2.8 VR II lens; focal length 86mm; ISO 640; 1/1000 @ f5 -2/3ev.

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