Listed in Live Bait and Tackle Shops
- 664 Hwy 11-71, Fort Frances, Ontario, Canada P9A 3M2
The newest bait & tackle shop located just 3 minutes West of Fort Frances on Hwy 11/71 W! Westside Bait & Tackle
|Monday||6:00 AM – 6:00 PM|
|Tuesday||6:00 AM – 6:00 PM|
|Wednesday||6:00 AM – 6:00 PM|
|Thursday||6:00 AM – 8:00 PM|
|Friday||6:00 AM – 8:00 PM|
|Saturday||6:00 AM – 6:00 PM|
|Sunday||6:00 AM – 6:00 PM|
Story provided by the Fort Frances Times
Anglers now have an added choice locally when buying their supplies.
Westside Bait & Tackle opened for business Saturday morning at its location on Highway 11/71 just west of Fort Frances.
“There hasn’t been a bait store in the west end for 20-30 years so we decided to jump on that,” co-owner Hannah Mueller told the Times on Monday morning.
Mueller, who is running the business with her father, Bill, said they’re both avid anglers, hunters, and all-around outdoors people.
She noted opening the store has been the dream for a long time.
“About five years ago, we almost did it but I was still in high school and we just weren’t quite there yet,” Mueller recalled.
“Just recently we decided we were going to go for it and this property ended up for sale, so we thought it was the right time,” she added.
Mueller noted that because they live “out in the country,” she and her dad often found it bothersome to have to drive across town to get bait, then head west again to go fishing.
“We get a lot of people heading up to the Nestor Falls area or Lake of the Woods, and there is no real bait shop on the west side of town,” she explained.
“It’s more convenient for them.
“There is a lot of tourism that way, too, and a lot of people with cabins and camps, so we’re hoping to bring in those people, too,” Mueller said.
Before opening the store, Mueller took a two-year business accounting program and was working for Stewart & Sande here.
Her dad currently is a supervisor at Hydro One but will be retiring in February.
“I can be here all the time now, and he can do the running around and stuff like that when he’s retired,” Mueller reasoned.
The store has a very distinct look, with pine all along the walls inside and on the front of the building outside.
“We wanted lots of pine in here,” Mueller said. ”We are very much cabin people so we liked the look of the pine.
“We wanted it so that when you walk in, it feels like an ‘outdoorsy’ shop,” she explained.
“You should walk in and feel like it is for fishermen or hunters.”
Westside Bait & Tackle will offer a variety of live bait, including minnows, leeches, and night crawlers, as it tries to accommodate all types of anglers.
“We also have a wide variety of tackle,” noted Mueller.
“Right now we have lots of ice-fishing stuff, but we do have all of our summer items coming in, as well.
“We’ve also have an awesome line of Canadian clothing brands that we are offering, as well,” she added.
Leading up to its opening, the store’s Facebook page was drumming up some interest by giving sneak peeks of the interior and holding a contest for a Westside Bait & Tackle T-shirt.
Mueller admitted it’s difficult to get the word out right away but they’re trying to build a customer base.
“We’ve been getting lots of support and good feedback,” she remarked.
“People are excited about the store and excited for us.”
Mueller said the store will open at 6 a.m. seven days a week, closing at 7 p.m. in the winter and around 9 p.m. during the summer months.
“We just want to hit everyone from the early-morning fishermen to the guys coming home from work,” she reasoned.
“We want to be available as much as we possibly can,” she stressed.