Ontario Bass Fishing
If we were to actually take the time to look at a map of Ontario we would realize how lucky we bass anglers really are. From the southern Lakes of Erie and Ontario to Lakes Huron, Georgian Bay and northern Lake Superior to Ontario’s near north lakes of Nippissing and Muskoka to name a few, Bass fishing in Ontario is simply fantastic!
Every one knows that the north shore of Ontario’s Lake Erie is a Smallmouth factory with huge fish being caught, but I have also seen monsters come out of Lake Simcoe tipping the scales at 7lbs. WOW! That’s a big Smallmouth! I have fished small inland lakes in Ontario’s Bruce Peninsula and hooked 4 to 6lb Smallmouth and Largemouth. Lake St. Clair in the southwest is another Bass haven of Ontario along with the infamous Kawarthas of south central Ontario. The Kawartha Lakes – Pigeon, Scugog, Rice, Buckhorn, Sturgeon and Balsam get their fare share of Bass angler traffic and still cough up a big supply of Largemouth and Smallmouth.
Ontario’s Walleye waters of Bay of Quinte, is becoming more and more of a Bass anglers paradise, with bigger fish weighing in at the tournament podium every year. Lake Ontario from Kingston to the St. Lawrence is an excellent Smallmouth fishery, just ask Pro Angler, Shaw Grisby, from Florida where his favorite fishing area is and he will mention Kingston. Lakes Couchiching, Muskoka, Nippissing, the list is virtually endless for good Smallmouth and Largemouth lakes where weights of 5lbs and up are being caught. Some of Southern Ontario’s river systems like the mighty Niagara, Detroit, St. Lawrence, Ottawa, Grand, Saugeen and even the French river of the near north have world class Bass fishing.Whether fishing from a canoe or from shore these rivers are a must for any adventurous Bass angler.
Ontario does have good sizes and numbers of Bass, but we must keep in mind the growing season here is cut in half in comparison to State side. Our winters last more than 4 months which means that a ‘hog’ of a Bass could be upwards of 10 years of age depending on whether you’re in the north or south. Lake Erie with its good population of Bass can handle the taking of a few good fish. Even lakes of Simcoe’s caliber can stand to loose a few, but small inland lakes, in my opinion, can’t handle everyone taking trophy Largemouth or Smallmouth.
Due to the short growing season taking big fish in large quantities from these waters could be devastating to the bass population. Smaller fish can be harvested in smaller lakes, but lunkers, I think should be released for the simple reason that ‘Big Bass make more Bass’ for us to pursue or harvest.
I have been Bass fishing Ontario waters for close to 36 years now and if I live to be a hundred I still will not be able to fish half of the lakes this province provides. Largemouth and Smallmouth are here in abundance and untouched like Ontario’s wilderness.
When fishing for Bass in Ontario I would say that from the Northern tip of Lake Superior and beyond to the southern most tip of Pelee Island, Ontario is truly a Bass angler’s paradise!
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