French Lake

August 2019
Located 48 miles NE of Cochrane, French Lake is a small, weed-rimmed lake offering good fishing for walleyes and northern pike. The lake is clear but markèdly tannin stained and is almost entirely rimmed with pencil reed banks that quickly fall away to 8 to 20 feet of water. There are no structural / rock features or shoals, but there are a number of mid-lake weedy areas. A few small creeks and rivers flow into and out of the lake, but there was no current during a low water period in late August when we fished the lake.


Although suggested for groups of 2-4 anglers, the outpost cabin is small and best suited for 2 anglers. For all purposes, water must be taken from the lake. Propane appliances include a full-size fridge, counter-top 3-burner stove (no oven) and a BBQ. The site attracted many species of birds including whisky jacks that readily took to being hand fed.

French Lake offers a good balance of walleyes and northern pike that, without major structural elements, are scattered throughout the lake - except in spring when fish concentrate at current flows. Past groups agreed that French Lake walleyes prefer live-bait rigs tipped with minnows or worms - spinner & slip-sinker rigs and jigs.

Pike abound at French Lake, relating to the extensive weedgrowth along shorelines and in mid-lake clumps. Midday, pike also prowled the large mid-lake flat in 12-18 feet of water wherever baitfish were concentrated. Swim jigs, large spinners and jerkbaits worked well.