The dos and don’ts of using live bait in provincial parks

Ontario is home to more than 250,000 lakes, thousands of kilometres of streams and rivers, and more than 150 species of fish.

There are endless fishing opportunities at Ontario Parks, and dropping a line is a great way to connect with and learn about nature.

From Lake Trout to Brook Trout, Walleye to Northern Pike, we’ve got some of the best recreational fishing opportunities in the world!

But before you head out to hook a big one, let’s talk about some of the dos and don’ts of using live bait in Ontario Parks:

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Spot the fall migrators

The signs of spring always grab our attention.

We’re excited by the arrival of the familiar birds, butterflies, and fish that we see each summer. Perhaps it’s simply because we yearn for the end of winter. Or maybe it’s the feeling that a good friend has returned from a long vacation down south.

What we neglect to notice sometimes though, is the beauty of their departure.

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Discover fall camping at Driftwood Provincial Park

This blog post comes from Emma Webb, Head Gate Attendant at Samuel de Champlain Provincial Park.

Driftwood is my favourite provincial park. Don’t get me wrong, I adore Samuel de Champlain, but there’s something magical about Driftwood. It’s where I started my parks career.

Although it may be smaller, the park has a lot of heart, and even more charm.

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Health benefits of fishing

Fishing is an iconic Canadian pastime. There’s nothing like spending the day by the water with your friends and family, casting a line and enjoying the great outdoors.

But did you know you can get more than a killer catch from a day of fishing? Fishing actually has benefits for your physical and mental health.

Here are a few ways fishing can improve your overall well-being.

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Top 6 parks for canoe fishing in northern Ontario

Paddling into the wilderness, fishing from a canoe and then going back to camp to enjoy a backcountry fish fry is a special experience.

If you’re up for a trip like this, check out our recommendations for the best backcountry fishing destinations in our northern parks.  Continue reading Top 6 parks for canoe fishing in northern Ontario

Muddying the water for Quetico’s spring Walleye

Today’s post comes from James Burns, a Conservation Officer, and former Quetico Park Interior Ranger from 2000-2013.

If the water is too cold for you to look forward to a deep dive in the lake after a long portage, that means the water is too cold for most species of fish in Quetico Provincial Park’s lakes as well.

Some resilient fish thrive in icy cold-water year-round, like the Lake Trout. The majority of Quetico’s fish, including Walleye, Northern Pike, and Smallmouth Bass, prefer water the same temperature as you or me: a nice, even 20 degrees Celsius (or 68 Fahrenheit).

But what do most sensible fish do when the ice has come off, and the temperature in most of the lake is a fin-shriveling 4 to 17 Celsius?

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The height of land: Wakami Lake Provincial Park

Wakami Lake Provincial Park sits very near the “height of land.” That is, the place where water either flows to the Great Lakes and eventually out to the Atlantic Ocean, or north to Hudson Bay and the arctic watershed.

It’s also a place where the southern forests of Sugar Maple and Yellow Birch give way to the trees of the boreal forest. Poplar, White Birch, Jack Pine, Balsam Fir and Black Spruce begin to dominate here.

Bald Eagles and Osprey are commonly seen fishing the productive waters of the lake. Wakami Lake is one of the best Walleye lakes in the northeast. Wildlife is abundant, and so is the quiet.

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Ice fishing for perch at Sibbald Point

Today’s post comes from year-round multispecies angler and writer, Ashley Rae, of SheLovesToFish.com.

I’ve previously only had the opportunity to explore Lake Simcoe a handful of times.

This included a couple of open water outings and an afternoon on the ice while passing through the area a few years back.

Spending more time on this incredible fishery is something that’s been on my radar for some time, and it was exciting to finally get a proper opportunity to target perch through the ice on Simcoe!

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Checking off new winter experiences at Silent Lake

Today’s post comes from year-round multispecies angler and writer Ashley Rae of SheLovesToFish.com, as she recounts her 2017 trip to Silent Lake.

I think any angler will agree that it’s nearly impossible to sleep while experiencing the anticipation of an upcoming fishing trip. This was the case for me and my friend Lori, who joined me on a recent adventure to Silent Lake Provincial Park.

This trip was especially exciting as Lori was chasing her first Lake Trout, and we would be exploring a new body of water. We were also looking forward to staying in a yurt, something neither of us had experienced.

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Hike-in ice fishing at Frontenac

Today’s post comes from year-round multispecies angler and writer Ashley Rae of SheLovesToFish.com, as she recounts her 2017 trip to Frontenac. 

Over the weekend, I traveled from my home in the Ottawa area to visit Frontenac Provincial Park. Growing up in nearby Napanee, I had visited the park plenty of times in the past, but this would be my very first hike-in ice fishing expedition.

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