Your Guide to Fishing in South Georgian Bay

Your Guide to Fishing in South Georgian Bay

From rivers and streams to Georgian Bay, no matter which type of freshwater angler you are, there is a picture-perfect place to go. Georgian Bay’s miles of habitat with small bays, inlets, points & shorelines make this region a paradise for fishing.

Top Fishing Spots 

  1. Georgian Bay at the Meaford Harbour
  2. Big Head River in Meaford at Legion Park or the Trout Hollow Trail
  3. Noisy River in Dunedin
  4. Mad River in Glen Huron or Creemore
  5. Pretty River in Nottawa
  6. Beaver River in Thornbury
  7. Georgian Bay at the Collingwood Harbour
  8. Wasaga Beach, where the river meets the bay

Looking to learn more about fishing in South Georgian Bay from one of our local experts? Click here to read our interview with Kevin, owner of Collingwood Adventure Voyages.

Key Fishing Season Dates

Trout Season:  Brook Brown and Rainbow trout 4th Saturday in April to September 30th

Bass Season: Large Mouth and Smallmouth 4th Saturday in June to November 30th

Pike season: January 1st to March 31 / 2nd Saturday in May to December 31st

Musky Season: 1St Saturday in June to December 15th


Ontario License-Free Fishing

Ontario Family Fishing Events is a province-wide opportunity for Canadian residents to fish Ontario waters without the otherwise mandatory fishing version outdoors card.  The Ontario Government has designated four periods throughout the year as license-free:

Family Fishing Weekend: February 15-17, 2020

Mother’s Day Weekend: May 9-10, 2020

Father’s Day Weekend: June 20-21, 2020

Family Fishing Week: July 4-12, 2020


TackleShare Program

Don’t have your own fishing tackle? No problem! Ontario Parks – Wasaga Beach Provincial Park participates in the TackleShare Program. Fishing rods, reels, and
tackle boxes are ready to be borrowed for free…just like a library book! For more information about TackleShare, visit www.tackleshare.com.


Thornbury Fish Ladder

Every spring and fall, the fish put on a show. Entering the Beaver River from Georgian Bay, they make their way to the Fish Ladder, then swim and jump over steps and pools, traversing the Thornbury Dam to the millpond and beyond. Located between Mill Street and Bruce Street, this passive fishway consists of an open channel with a relatively natural appearance that allows for excellent fish viewing opportunities. While allowing better fish passage, the fishway has been designed to exclude lamprey from entering the Beaver River watershed. The fishway provides migrating salmon and rainbow trout with access to several kilometers of cold water streams in the Beaver River watershed. Upstream, the migrating trout and salmon pass through three other fishways located at the Clendenan and Slabtown Dams. Easier access to the spawning areas results in greater numbers of rainbow trout and chinook salmon in southern Georgian Bay. This allows increased opportunities for sports fishing and viewing.

Rainbow trout usually show up in April. Adult spawning chinook salmon arrive from late August to late October.


Public Launch Facilities


  • Public launch on Heritage Drive. Parking is available; however, storage of a vessel, vessel trailer or cradle in Collingwood Harbour is not permissible unless approved by the designated staff person.  $8 launch fee per day.
  • Harbourview Park (behind McDonalds). No fee.
  • Living Water Resort & Spa (Southwinds Marina). Harbour Street East. Access to water only, no launch ramp


  • Mouth of the Beaver River, Highway 26 West at the end of Bruce Street. $10 launch slip day pass


  • Meaford Marine at St.Vincent Street, West. $5 in/out pass per day


  • Lake Eugenia boat launch, 251 Canrobert Street. $20 per day for non-residents

Wasaga Beach:

  • A provincial park boat launch can be found in Beach Area 1 at the far east end of the parking lot, and a municipal boat launch is located adjacent to the Wasaga Beach Welcome Centre parking lot. Canoe launches are located at Schooner Town Heritage Site (off Oxbow Dr.) and at the Wasaga Sports Park (Klondike Park Road).
  • Sturgeon Point Marina. River Road East, left over the bridge heading towards Beach Area 1. Concrete Launch Ramp for smaller boats, with ample parking. ($)


Trout Pond Fishing

Wilmer Trout Ponds is open from mid-April to the end of September. Located off Highway 6, just outside of Durham, the ponds here are stocked with naturally fed brook, brown & rainbow trout, plus a separate pond for large-mouth bass. This family facility provides a fun-filled fishing day, no fishing licence, no limits, no season! Bring your own fishing equipment. (Cash only).


Fishing Charters

Charter boats are found in all of the shoreline communities. Don’t miss an opportunity to get out on the open water and take on the challenge of rainbow trout, lake trout and chinook running deep. Experienced charter captains know how to find fish and have all of the right tools & equipment required. As a bonus, you are guaranteed an excellent day on the beautiful waters of Georgian Bay!

Collingwood Aventure Voyages (Collingwood)

Captain Kevin caters to the serious angler or to the casual one, even the “never-ever” beginners too! Collingwood Adventure Voyages offer many different fishing packages, no matter how serious or casual you are – one of them will be right for you.


U Catch em’ Charters (Meaford)

From April through November you could catch Salmon, Lake Trout, Brown Trout and Rainbow Trout ranging from 1lb – 30lbs. Established in 1988, U Catch ’em Charters has operated two vessels – a 35′ Cooper Yacht, and a 26′ Thompson Sport Fisherman Hardtop.  All safety and fishing equipment is provided.

Fishing Supplies

Gyles Sailes & Marine in Thornbury offers the best combination of boat repair service, marine supply selection, and competitive prices in the Georgian Triangle region.

•Knowledgeable and Friendly Staff

•In House Seminars and Demonstrations

•Large Product Selection


Cliff Richardson Boats provides a full service marina, repair facility and storage in Meaford.

New to fishing? Check out the Ministry of Natural Resources website for everything you need to know before fishing in Ontario. Including getting a fishing licence, fishing seasons & more.


Year round fishing can is available for the avid fisherman if the weather co-operates, some can be seen fishing off the shore well into January or February until the ice comes in, when they take to huts and try jigging through holes in the ice. Always use caution when venturing onto a body of water at any point during the season. Ice thickness varies everywhere, even within the same body of water. Click HERE for details on ice-fishing.

When the spring arrives, the rainbow are heading upstream and the banks of the rivers and streams are high traffic areas with everyone wanting to catch the first big one of the season. The spring and fall migratory spawning runs are legendary among anglers, who line the banks of local rivers hoping to catch one of these beauties or an elusive brown or brook trout, which are always a challenge to even the most experience angler.

Georgian Bay species include bass (both largemouth & smallmouth), catfish, pike, salmon, trout, walleye, sturgeon & tiger muskie.

Lake Eugenia also offers great fishing for bass, perch, crappie and the elusive speckled trout.


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