My Favorite Fishing Trips in Ontario, Canada
Over the years I've been very fortunate to have headed north of the border on many fishing trips into Ontario, Canada. These trips have been a nice mix between family vacations and fishing trips with good friends, taking me to different areas of central Ontario and up to Northwestern Ontario - from the Georgian Bay to the French River.
The following are my personal top five fishing lakes in Ontario and are based on the following criteria
- A Good Multi-Species Fishery with Opportunities for Trophy Fish
- Within a Day or Two Drive of Eastern Ohio
- Clean Cabins and Affordable Costs
- The Opportunity to Tow in My Own Fishing Boat
- Semi-Remote Water and Location
Lady Evelyn Lake
An early Canadian fishing trip that my father and I took was up to Lady Evelyn Lake, and we stayed at the Island 10 Lodge. This lodge is centrally located on Lady Evelyn Lake, which makes for shorter boat rides to good fishing areas on either end. My dad truly enjoyed being out on the water catching walleyes and pike, as well as enjoying this lodge's tasty home cooked meals.
The fun began when we boated in to the lodge (you portage around a large dam and ride up a river to Lady Evelyn Lake, and then ride up the lake to Island 10 Lodge). We chose to go up in August for more stable weather and we caught a number of nice walleyes, as well as good smallmouth bass and northern pike. Our largest walleye was 7 lbs 10 oz and it was a 28" "blue" walleye, which I just happened to catch at the "4 corners" location. It is an area that is known to hold larger walleyes, especially in August and September. The cabins were very clean, modern, with full bathrooms and solid beds. This camp has boardwalks from their cabins to the lodge and main dock. I have fished out of this lodge a number of times over the years, and enjoyed every stay.
Another year I took my own son (age ten then) up to the French River to fish with a good friend and his two young sons. We stayed at the French River Lodge, which is another boat-in camp. I prefer to fish at a boat-in camp if possible, as you don't normally have to deal with road noise and have more privacy during your time at camp. The French River is beautiful, and we went up in early June. Unfortunately, the fishing was only "fair" though we caught enough eater sized walleyes for a number of fish fry's. Smallmouth bass and smaller pike gave our younger sons plenty of action when the walleye bite slowed down. This camp's cabins were older, though they were clean and the camp had good docking for our boats. We prepared our own meals, and this worked out fine with our young boys (taking breaks and having snacks when they got tired of fishing).
A newer camp that I really enjoyed opened a few years ago in Northern Ontario - Fushimi Cabin Rental. Read my full summary of fishing from the Fushimi Cabins here.
Three of my friends and I drove up to Hearst, Ontario in June of 2018 and spent a great week at Fushimi Cabins, which is yet another boat-in camp. This refurbished log cabin is located by itself on the south shore of Fushimi Lake and is entirely self-contained. It has 24 hour electric (powered by an on-site generator) and a near gourmet kitchen, two bedrooms on the main floor, and a decent sized 2nd story loft that has two beds. The cabin has a large front deck, and excellent dockage for your boats. The log cabin has new windows with excellent screens, hard wood floors, overhead fans, good solid beds and Sirius Radio.
Fushimi Lake is entirely surrounded by crown land, so there is only a smaller Ontario Provincial park that has camp sites and a good boat ramp. This is where you meet the camp owners and ramp your boat(s), or pick-up camp boats, to use for the week. The lake has several rivers that feed into it, as well as a decent size out flowing river. Cell service is available on the north shore of the lake (if needed) though you are truly in the North Country at this camp. The fishing was great as every shoreline and island we fished during the week held fish. Many of the fish were smaller pike, though we caught pike up to 44". We also caught a number of decent walleyes in the mid to upper teens, with our largest walleyes going 22". This camp has been featured on several Canadian fishing programs, as it is a beautiful cabin on a great fishing lake. Several of the men on our trip truly enjoy cooking and grilling, so this worked out very well for all of us (none of us lost any weight during the week).
One of my favorite all-time fishing camps is Grand Falls Camp, which is a drive-in located on an Ontario reservoir, just 22 miles north of Thessalon, Ontario on Route 129. It fishes just like a lake, and I have taken my family (and many friends) up to it on a number of occasions. Tunnel Lake has very good smallmouth bass, with decent pike and walleye fishing. It is feed by the Mississauga River and only has this one camp on the lake (which offers 3 water front cabins - 2 larger A-frames and one smaller 2 bedroom cabin).
There are just a handful of private homes, and a very small private campground on this lake. While this lake kicks out larger fish, the normal fish caught are eater sized walleyes, along with 2 - 4 lb smallmouth and northerns ranging from 4 - 6 lbs.
The main Grand Falls Camp is really located on Cummings Lake, which is across the roadway from the three cabins on Tunnel Lake. Tunnel Lake has clear water and is surrounded by hills that go for miles. When you are on the lake, you forget you are only an hour and one-half out of the Soo. Cummings Lake across the road offers fishing for lake trout, larger bass and large pike.
All Time Favorite Fishing Lake: Cedar Lake Chain
Drum roll to yourself…my all time favorite fishing lake in Ontario is the Cedar Lake Chain, just north of Vermilion Bay in Northwest Ontario. It is a 2 day drive (each way) for us Ohio buckeyes so I appreciate every trip I take to this excellent fishery. While I have stayed at different camps on this lake chain, my favorite is the Cedar Point Resort Camp which is a drive-in camp.
This camp is centrally located on this larger body of water, and offers an excellent protected cove surrounded by their cabins. They have new boat docks located in the cove area, which are state of the art (along with full electric for on-board chargers). Their cabins are older, but modern and very clean. The camp built a new large fish cleaning house a year ago, and added new decks to all their cabins.
The lake system has trophy muskie fishing (a number of National TV Muskie fishing shows are filmed on this lake chain from year to year) though these lakes also offer great walleye, pike, crappie, perch and smallmouth fishing. What I enjoy with this lake chain is that no matter the weather (outside of lightning) these lakes have smaller bays (so to speak) with plenty of islands and narrows to fish when the wind kicks up. I was last up at this lake for the '16 Spring Fishing Opener, and my friend and I had a fabulous week of fishing. We hooked into a number of large walleyes (up to 29") almost every day, as well as large musky and pike throughout the week. Ice had just gone out about a week before this spring opener and the weather was southern breezes all week. For once (ha) our spring trip was timed just right.
If you have the opportunity, check out any of these lakes and camps. Whether for a family fishing trip or a fishing trip up north with your buddies, you can't go wrong with choosing any of these fine locations.