Darkhouse Spearing

Editor’s Note: This post is part of the Hardwater Hunters series by Modern Carnivore focused on darkhouse spearfishing. Look for other posts in this series by clicking on this link.)

If you haven’t heard of darkhouse spearing for fish I wouldn’t be surprised. While it’s literally the oldest form of fishing known to humans, it’s not the most popular fishing method these days. It is something that I’ve done my entire life. I harvested my first pike with a spear when I was just eight years old, and I can still remember the moment like it was yesterday.

MeatEater Producer Janis Putelis

In Episode 3 of the Fur Hat Ice Tour the MeatEater crew followed me and Janis Putelis on a darkhouse spearfishing adventure in north central Minnesota. We’re on the hunt for lake whitefish, but we’ll also take a northern pike if it comes through the hole. Chef Lukas joins us on the ice and whips up some amazing fish recipes which should soon be available on the MeatEater blog. Watch the episode now, and if you’re interested in learning more about darkhouse spearing there are links to several other posts and recipes below.

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Other Darkhouse Spearfishing Posts:

How to cut a spearfishing hole (MeatEater)

Spearing Lake Whitefish (video)

My Darkhouse Spearing Experience by Phil Aarrestad

Pike Fever and the Lure of Spearing Fish by Jamie Carlson

Kalamojakka (Finnish Fish Stew)

Smoked Lake Whitefish Salad with Herb Aioli

Smoked Lake Whitefish Dip

Lemon Dill Cream Cheese Spread (to accompany smoked fish)

Cook Book: Selecting and Preparing Great Lakes Whitefish

Keep up on all our darkhouse spearing content!


Mark with his first pike from a darkhouse spearing trip.

Posted by Mark

Mark Norquist is Publisher and Editor of Modern Carnivore. He's spent a good part of his life outdoors. He has a passion for hunting, fishing, foraging and eating healthy food.