Flyfishing on Lake Moehne

Lake Moehne near the nature reserve Arnsberg Forest (Arnsberger Wald) is, besides Lake Sorpe, Lake Bigge and Lake Henne, certainly one of the most idyllically situated and scenically attractive lakes in the Sauerland region. With its four basins Lake Moehne extends from the east to the west over an area of 1037 hectares and shows a maximum depth of 36 metres. Since many years ago Lake Moehne has an excellent reputation as one of Germany’s best predator waters, which is not at least a result of the professional fishery management of Markus Kuehlmann and his team. Especially the good population and respectable sizes of pike in Lake Moehne, which in fact can grow extremely big in this water, attract many anglers. 

Big Pike on Streamer

While spin fishing and trolling are very popular fishing techniques on Lake Moehne, the crystal clear water and shallow banks offer perfect conditions also for fly fishing. Although the biggest fish are usually hooked on the trolling system the chances of catching well sized fish on the fly are extremely good.

Zander caught on a tiny nymph

Pike is the prevailing species at Lake Moehne but also perch, pikeperch and even lake trout can occur to take a well presented streamer.

Large Browntrout from Lake Moehne


Streamer Fishing for Pike

We find it somewhat surprising to encounter so few fly fishermen on Lake Moehne, although the lake is a real jewel. One of the reasons may be that fly fishing for pike is still not a well established fishing method in Germany and fly fishermen that would like to try catching a pike on a fly are being put off by the size and the depth of the lake and find it too unlikely to get a bite on the fly. But far from it! After spawning in early spring many pike remain in the shallow regions near the shore until, with rising water temperatures, they follow their predominant prey – the coregons – into the deeper regions of the lake where they are practically out of reach for fly fishermen. However, from early May to July (according to weather and water temperature this period can vary) fly fishing is probably one of the most rewarding fishing techniques in the shallow waters, provided that you are fishing the right spots. We firmly believe that during this period streamers are even better fish catchers than the usual lures (wobblers, spinners, spoons or soft lures) as they can be fished slightly over the reeds with an extremely slow retrieve and perfectly unfurl their natural movement in the crystal clear water.

Flyfishing from a float tube on Lake Moehne

Furthermore, in contrast to most usual artificial lures that everybody is using, streamers are still completely unknown to pike, which can result in a big advantage. You may find this hard to believe, but we have not seldom experienced occasions in which we were sharing the same spot with fishermen using usual artificial lures and had much more fish contacts on the fly. As a general guideline the best spots are to be found where fields of reed grow about 0,5 to 2 meters below the surface or where you can see half sunken trees and brushes on flooded banks. Using a belly boat you can drift along the shore while casting your fly towards the bank. Most attacks are likely to occur in water depths between 1 and 4 metres.

Pike on the Fly

Some onshore wind and a bit of a ripply water surface provide perfect fishing conditions. The average size of pike you can expect to catch on the fly on Lake Möhne ranges from 60 to 80 cm and the fish are in perfect condition and fight very hard. Although it won’t happen every day fish beyond a metre are always possible. During the warmer summer months the chances to find larger pike in the shallow regions close to the banks shrink dramatically. Instead you can experience exiting surface fly fishingith smaller streamers on perch.

Zander from Lake Moehne

Tackle & Flies

The most important thing to consider when choosing your tackle is that rod and line must harmonize perfectly. Otherwise long casts with larger streamers can become a frustrating experience. The relatively low casting position from the belly boat can make casting even more difficult and the primary aim must be to get your fly out there with a minimum of false cast – even more so if you are casting into the wind. We thus recommend paying attention to a proper balance between the rod and the line (including the weight of your streamer) and to make sure your rod is not overloaded. For pike fishing we usually take a strong but not too stiff 9 weight rod and a floating/intermediate line with a clear tip, which will – according to the speed of the retrieve – constantly keep the streamer at a water depth of approximately 1 to 1,5m. Regarding the choice of flies light-coloured buck tail streamers (deceiver patterns) of between 10 and 15cm have proven to be especially effective.


Perch on fly at Lake Moehne

So if you have always had the dream of catching a pike on the fly we strongly recommend you to try Lake Moehne. Whenever the conditions were right a fishing trip without a fish contact was rather an exception and even if so; the incomparable sensation of drifting along the reed banks through the silence of daybreak or evening mist was always an unforgettable experience. Should you have any questions or need some more advice just give us a ring or visit us at our store at Lake Moehne