Gods Lake in Manitoba, Canada was so named without a possessive apostrophe in error. While some controversy exists over the validity of this name, one thing is not controversial: Gods Lake and the river that drains it into the Hudson Bay is one of the most idyllic, preserved fisheries in North America.  The lake is 1/3 the size of Rhode Island, and it was from a seven-mile-long island, Elk Island, that I was based for my expedition.  We landed there on a gravel runway that used to be a working platform for the now-extinct mining settlement there.  In the waters of Gods Lake trophy pike and lake trout thrive, but the most special aspect is the trophy brook trout fishing of Gods River.

A thirty minute float plane ride from Elk Island, Gods River is thronged with brookies that consistently top the 25″ mark.  While this species’ population has been crippled in most of North America, here the deforestation and human impacts on the ecosystem that have decimated literally 95% of the wild brookie population on the continent is absent.  Our guides skillfully navigated class III whitewater in our aluminum boats as Phil Shook and I angled for that once-in-a-lifetime catch.  And we found it.

God's Lake-10

The launch dock at Elk Island Lodge


God's Lake-9

Midnight on Gods Lake


God's Lake-13

Gods River winds through miles of Boreal forest on its way to the Hudson Bay


God's Lake-28

The evening bite at Gods was one of the most productive times of the day to fish


God's Lake-19

Phil Schott wrestles with a trophy brookie


God's Lake-24

Guiding on Gods River


God's Lake-40

The family photo album at Elk Island Lodge


God's Lake-43

The now-absent mining settlement on Elk Island used to house a movie theater, store and a bustling mine that pulled gold from the land prior to drying up that resource


God's Lake-34

Fish fry on Gods



A hefty brookie comes to the boat on Gods River


God's Lake-47

The provincial bird of Manitoba



A face only a mother could love

Read about this trip and the plight of the Eastern brook trout next year in FLY FISHERMAN magazine