I am lucky enough to live in Southern Ontario where fishing opportunities abound. While just about any body of water draws my attraction here are some of my favorite fishing spots:
Fairy Lake, Acton, Ontario
Fairy Lake is a great place to fish whether from shore or by boat. Gas-powered motors are prohibited but Fairy Lake is best fished out of a canoe, kayak or small aluminum boat anyway. The boat launch is located in Prospect Park. There are many weed beds and stumps providing structure for fish to relate to. You will find pike, catfish, largemouth bass, black crappie, carp and sunfish in this lake. The crappie fishing in particular is excellent, especially in the spring/summer months when sight-fishing for them in the weed beds to the north end of the lake. To read more about fishing in Fairy Lake please click here.
Here are some of my posts about Fairy Lake.
Guelph Lake, Ontario
The large portion of Guelph Lake, west of Wellington Rd 124 is part of the Guelph Lake Conservation Area run by the Grand River Conservation Authority. No gas-powered motors are allowed on the lake. I usually fish the part of the lake east of Wellington Rd 124, accessing it off of Wellington Rd 29. If you follow a well-worn path off of 29 you will find a little area to launch small craft such as canoes and kayaks. There are good-sized pike, bass (mainly largemouth to the east and both largemouth and smallies in the conservation area), black crappie and yellow perch. This is a favored ice fishing destination and the perch bite is pretty good all winter long.
Island Lake, Orangeville, Ontario
Fishing this lake was a revelation. I had only been here for ice fishing until recently and the first time we put the boat in was quite an experience. I ended up with some real nice fish that day. Gas motors are not allowed on this lake but you can get around quite nicely with an electric or by rowing. Island Lake Conservation Area is run by Credit Valley Conservation so there is a fee for entering the park but it’s quite reasonable. Canoes and aluminum boats are available to rent. You’ll find sunfish, perch, plentiful rock bass, pike and some nice size bass. I’ve been told there are some nice crappie in there but I have yet to catch one. The deep spot is at the end farthest from the launch. My own experience is the that the bay with all the sticks is the place to catch the big ones in the summer. Throw a frog to shore and hold on.
Here are some of my posts about Island Lake.
Elora Gorge, Elora, Ontario
A favorite spot of mine for a quick fishing trip is the Elora Gorge. The spot I prefer is actually outside of the conservation area and can be easily accessed from the parking lot just off the main street in Elora, by the bridge. If you park there and walk along the Grand River, you will find a trail that leads you by the falls (the old mill dam) and down into the gorge. This is the spot you will find people launching canoes and kayaks to take a run through the Gorge, but I go here to fish. At this spot, Irvine Creek runs into the Grand and there is an excellent pool of brown trout. You can easily fish from shore and get a good bite. However, you can also take a canoe and paddle over to the old dam. In this spot you will find some nice walleye and spunky smallies. I caught my first ever walleye here and lost the crankbait on my next cast!
Binbrook Conservation Area, Ontario
Binbrook Conservation Area is a recent find for me and I’ve only been able to fish it a few times, but I absolutely love it. Binbrook Conservation Area is home to Lake Niapenco, the largest lake in the Niagara watershed. While I have gone here for the crappie fishing, I can tell you this is also a fantastic bass fishery (having inadvertently hooked a few will searching for crappie) – there are both largemouth and smallmouth bass present. During the 2012 Binbrook Crappie Derby one lucky angler caught a 30-inch walleye (it wasn’t me). You can also find northern pike, yellow perch, carp, pumpkinseed and rock bass. All pike, walleye and bass must be released. If you are looking to catch a dinner of crappie or perch, be sure to check out the consumption guidelines.