Dave Goldberg has fished all over the world, literally, so when he picks out a destination for an annual summer trip to the far north, it’s probably somewhere the fishing is crazy good. And probably somewhere you’d like to go, too.

At least that’s what Goldberg’s hoping for this summer at Tazin Lake Lodge, about as far north in Saskatchewan as you can get and not be in Canada’s Northwest Territories.

The lake is famous for its huge lake trout, with many fish over 20 pounds and some over 50 pounds. There are also some giant northern pike to be caught.

A happy angler and guide with a giant northern pike caught on Tazin Lake. Photo courtesy Tazin Lake lodge.
A happy angler and guide with a giant northern pike caught on Tazin Lake. Photo courtesy Tazin Lake lodge.

The lake is so far north that it’s locked in ice through May each year. The lodge doesn’t even open until June 13. Goldberg’s group of 11, including his sons and a gaggle of Duluth-area businessmen, will arrive June 20.

“We’re going as early as we could get in, their second week open, hoping the trout are still up shallow,’’ Goldberg explained as he laid out his summer trip plans. “I wanted to get in a trip for really big lakers this summer and this lake has a reputation for huge trout.”

Blue sky and clouds are reflected in the calm waters of Tazin Lake, about as far north in Saskatchewan as you can get. Duluth's Dave Goldberg is heading there in June hoping to catch giant lake trout near the surface, including on a fly. Photo courtesy Tazin Lake Lodge.
Blue sky and clouds are reflected in the calm waters of Tazin Lake, about as far north in Saskatchewan as you can get. Duluth's Dave Goldberg is heading there in June hoping to catch giant lake trout near the surface, including on a fly. Photo courtesy Tazin Lake Lodge.

He has never been there before, Goldberg noted, and that's getting harder for him to say. If there are exciting fish to be caught on fly or lure anywhere around the globe, he’s probably been there.

“I’ve been to the Amazon seven times for peacock bass... I’ve been to New Zealand six times for brown trout... This spring will be our fourth trip to Cuba,’’ Goldberg said, noting the island nation has fantastic fishing for bonefish, tarpon and snook.

Duluthian Dave Goldberg caught this peacock bass on a fly on a river in Brazil. Goldberg, who has fished all over the world, is heading to Tazin Lake in Saskatchewan this summer hoping for giant lake trout. Photo courtesy Dave Goldberg.
Duluthian Dave Goldberg caught this peacock bass on a fly on a river in Brazil. Goldberg, who has fished all over the world, is heading to Tazin Lake in Saskatchewan this summer hoping for giant lake trout. Photo courtesy Dave Goldberg.

Goldberg, 84, owns his own private fishing lodge on Entwine Lake, northeast of Fort Frances, Ontario. (He also still has his private pilot's license and a float plane to get there.) He’s also been to several other far-north lakes like Casba, Snowbird and Baker, all with giant trout.

“I think Tazin will be good because it hasn’t been commercialized that much. And it’s got a lot of islands and bays where you can fish even if there’s wind. Some of the other big trout lakes, like Great Salve and Great Bear, are just big, open expanses of water,’’ Goldberg noted.

Just at daybreak on July 14, Duluth’s Dave Goldberg shows off a big Chinook salmon he reeled in aboard Andy Klatzky’s fishing boat, the “Reel Tight,” on Lake Michigan. Salmon tend to bite best at low-light hours near dawn and dusk. (Sam Cook / scook@duluthnews.com)
Just at daybreak on July 14, Duluth’s Dave Goldberg shows off a big Chinook salmon he reeled in aboard Andy Klatzky’s fishing boat, the “Reel Tight,” on Lake Michigan. Salmon tend to bite best at low-light hours near dawn and dusk. (Sam Cook / scook@duluthnews.com)

Goldberg insists, and people he has fished with will confirm this, that he still gets excited no matter what's on the end of the line.

“I get just as excited for a lake trout or a 15-inch walleye as I do for a peacock bass,” he said. “I just love catching fish. I haven’t lost my enthusiasm yet.”

He fits his fishing trips in between his senior softball league and rounds of golf and Goldberg said that, at his age, he’s happy to be healthy and mobile “and still flying my own plane… although it’s getting harder to get people to go with me,” he said with a laugh.

Thinking about going?

Tazin Lake Lodge offers 7-day trips, American plan (includes all meals) for $4,500 U.S. including round-trip float plane transportation to the lodge from Fort McMurray, Alberta. That's a 23-hour drive or a roughly $1,000 round trip flight from Duluth. For more information go to tazinlake.com.



Blue sky and clouds are reflected in the calm waters of Tazin Lake, about as far north in Saskatchewan as you can get. Duluth's Dave Goldberg is heading there in June hoping to catch giant lake trout near the surface, including on a fly. Photo courtesy Tazin Lake Lodge.
Blue sky and clouds are reflected in the calm waters of Tazin Lake, about as far north in Saskatchewan as you can get. Duluth's Dave Goldberg is heading there in June hoping to catch giant lake trout near the surface, including on a fly. Photo courtesy Tazin Lake Lodge.