Ontario Fishing Lakes

Ontario fishing lakes offer the
best freshwater fishing on the planet


Ontario Canada has over 250,000 freshwater lakes within its provincial boundaries so obviously I will not be mentioning them all on this site but included on this page is a list of destination Ontario fishing lakes that are listed in every Ontario fishing guide as fishing hotspots.

Please note that there are many more bodies of water that are definitely worth fishing in Ontario including many fly-in locations but pretty well every expert agrees that these Ontario fishing lakes listed below, in no particular order, are the cream of the crop.


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Northern Ontario fishing lakes

Big Pine Lake – This Ontario fishing lake is located on Highway 101 east of Wawa. Species found include northern pike, smallmouth bass, walleye, and brook trout.

Dog Lake - Just north of Thunder Bay off Highway 17 this is a well known fishing spot with good stocks of walleye, northern pike, smallmouth bass, lake trout and whitefish.

Lake St Joseph - Great year round fishing on some species. It is close to the northern limit of the road network and is accessed by Highway 599 from the town of Ignace. The lake has an area of 49,400 hectares (121,822 acres) and is mainly known for its walleye and northern pike. Lake St. Joseph has a wilderness designation thus a special permit must be obtained in addition to a fishing licence in order to fish on the lake.

Lake Seul and the English River system (Minnitaki-Abrams-Pelican-Botsford Lakes) - A large system of interconnected lakes it is the 2nd largest lake contained entirely within Ontario, encompassing an area of 167,500 hectares (409,453 acres) with a depth up to 154 feet (47 m). Located north of Sioux Lookout off Highway 105 its tea colored waters are known for northern pike and walleye.

Big Vermilion Lake - Connected to the English River system the lake is found off Highway 516 north of Dryden. Encompassing an area of 6,864 Hectares (16,961 acres) with a depth 140 feet (42 m) its waters are teeming with walleye, northern pile, lake trout and smallmouth bass.

Red lake - This remote lake in Northwestern Ontario is found at the end of the road network by taking Highway 105 to the end then continuing on Highway 125 to the Town of Red Lake. This fabulous fishing spot is 14,386 hectares (35, 548 acres) large and has a maximum depth of 151 feet (46 m). Species found include northern pike, walleye and lake trout.

Eagle Lake – This easily accessible Ontario fishing lake is located just west of Dryden on Highway 17. It encompasses an area of 27,00 hectares (67,953 acres) and has a maximum depth of 112 feet (34 m). It is well known for its stocks of northern pike, walleye, muskie, smallmouth bass and lake trout.

Wabigoon and Dinorwic lakes – These connected lakes are on Highway 17 just east of Dryden and total 15,087 hectares, (37,280 acres) with a maximum depth of 47 feet (14 m). Species found include muskie, northern pike, walleye, lake trout, smallmouth bass and yellow perch.

Rainy Lake - This large Ontario fishing lake straddles the Canada-US border in northwestern Ontario and is located on Highway 11. It encompasses an area of 93,200 hectares, (230,302 acres,) and has a maximum depth of 164 feet (50m). It is known for its stocks of smallmouth bass, northern pike, walleye, black crappie and muskie and is home to the annual Canadian Bass Championships.

Shoal Lake – This lake straddles the Manitoba - Ontario border and is connected to Lake of the Woods west of Kenora. It encompasses and area of 26,246 hectares (64853 acres), and can be accessed by road just south of Highway 17. Fish stocks include smallmouth bass and northern pike. A very clean lake its water is used as the drinking water for the city of Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Lake Of The Woods – This huge lake straddles the borders of Ontario, Manitoba and Minnesota. It encompasses an area of 434,860 Hectares (1,074,000 acres) and has a maximum depth of 210 feet (64 m). It can be accessed off Highway 71. Lake of the Woods services more non-resident anglers than any other lake in the province and is well stocked with the following species: smallmouth bass, northern pike, walleye, sauger, muskie and lake trout.

Lac Des Mille Lacs – Located just west of Thunder Bay between the junction of Highways 11 and 17 this Ontario fishing lake encompasses an area of 24,510 hectares (60,565 acres) ad has a maximum depth of 82 feet (25m). Species found include, northern pike and walleye.

Whitefish Lake – Is located just east of Wawa off Highway 101. This small Ontario fishing lake encompasses an area of 3,000 hectares (7,413 acres) and has a maximum depth of 32 feet (7m). Species found include smallmouth bass, yellow perch and northern pike.

Lake Nipigon – This huge lake is world famous as a fishing destination. It is located north of Thunder Bay off Highway 11 and is the largest lake located completely within Ontario at 484,800 hectares (1,197,966 acres) with a maximum depth of 541 feet (165 m). Well known for its trophy brook trout, lake trout, and northern pike.

Manitouiln Island – While not a lake per se Manitoulin Island does have more than 100 lakes located on it and is a serious fishing destination. It does however include Lake Manitou, which is the largest freshwater lake on a freshwater island in the world and is also the largest lake within a lake in the world. Manitoulin Island is located just south of Sudbury off Highway 17. Species found on the island include walleye, northern pike, largemouth and smallmouth bass, muskie, lake trout and yellow perch.

Lake Temagami - Another great fshing destination that is easily accessible it is located just north of North Bay on Highway 11. This Ontario fishing lake encompasses an area of 20,971 hectares (51,820 acres) and has a maximum depth of 357 feet (109 m). Species found include smallmouth bass, walleye, northern pike, lake trout, and yellow perch.

Lake Superior – The largest of the Great Lakes is also the largest lake in the world encompassing an area of 8,240,000 hectares (20,361,483 acres) with a maximum depth of 1332 feet (406 m). It serves as part of the border between Ontario and US and Highway 17 north of Sault St Marie runs along its northern shores to Thunder Bay. Its world renowned fishery includes: chinook salmon, coho salmon, lake trout, brown trout and steelhead.

Lake Timiskaming – Another popular destination this Ontario fishing lake is north of North Bay on Highway 11 and straddles the Ontario-Quebec border encompassing 29,500 hectares (72,896 acres) with a maximum depth of 709 feet (216 m). Well known for its stocks of walleye, northern pike, largemouth bass, lake trout, whitefish, yellow perch and sturgeon.

Lake Abitibi - North of Kirkland Lake off Highway 101 this lake straddes the Quebec – Ontario border encompassing 93,100 hectares (230,055 acres) with a maximum depth of 49.2 feet (15 m). Species found include: walleye, northern pike and yellow perch.



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Southern Ontario fishing lakes

Lake Muskoka – A very popular fishing spot in the heart of Ontario cottage country near Gravenhurst and Bracebridge on Highway 11. Species found in this Ontario fishing lake include northern pike, largemouth and smallmouth bass, yellow perch and lake trout.

Lake Nipissing – Long considered one of the best fishing destinations in the world this large Ontario fishing lake boasts some of the best spring fishing in Ontario with incredible catches of perch and other sport fishing. Encompassing an area of 87,000 hectares (214,890 acres) with a maximum depth of 171 feet (52m) Lake Nipissing has been historically considered the dividing line between North and South Ontario. Located just off Highway 11 the city of North Bay sits proudly on its shores. Fish species found include largemouth and smallmouth bass, walleye, northern pike, muskie and yellow perch.

At one time one of the planets best locations for walleye the lake has suffered a drastic reduction in this sought after species in recent years and is now under severe threat and other destinations should be seriously considered if you are seeking one of these magnificent trophy fish.

Lakes Balsam & Mitchell – These two small Ontario fishing lakes encompass a total area of 5,065 hectares (12,515 acres) and have a maximum depth of 49 feet (15 m). Lake Mitchell is north of North Bay between Highways 63 and 11. Lake Balsam is south of North bay off Highway 522. Both lakes are well stocked with largemouth and smallmouth bass, walleye and muskie.

Lake Scugog – This is a shallow man made lake that I part of the Trent-Severn waterway system and is located just north of Oshawa off Highway 35. It encompasses an area of 6,374 hectares (15,750 acres) and has a maximum depth of 23 feet (7m). Species found include largemouth and smallmouth bass, muskie, yellow perch, walleye, bluegill and black crappie.

Lake Simcoe and Lake Couchiching – These two lakes are joined together as Simcoe empties into Couchiching at “the narrows”. In total, they occupy 77,396 hectares (191,239 acres) and have a maximum depth of 143 feet (41m). Lake Simcoe is located at Highway 400 in Barrie and the beginning of Highway 11. Lake Couchiching is on Highway 11. This prized fishing spot has species including: smallmouth bass, yellow perch, lake whitefish and lake trout.

Pigeon lake – A small Ontario fishing lake that is part of the Trent-Severn waterway system it is located north of Peterborough off Highway 7. It encompasses and area of 5,344 hectares (13,200 acres) and has a maximum depth of 56 feet, (17m). Species found include largemouth and smallmouth bass, walleye, muskie and bluegill.

Rice Lake – A very famous fishing spot for locals it is part of the part of Trent-Severn waterway system and is located south of Peterborough off Highway 7. The lake encompasses an area of 9,156 hectares (22,000 acres) and has a maximum depth of 43 feet (13.4 m). Its well-stocked waters include largemouth and smallmouth bass, walleye, bluegill and black crappie.

Buckhorn Lake – This Ontario fishing lake is also part of the part of Trent Severn waterway system and is located just north of Peterborough off Highway 7. It encompasses an area of 3,191 hectares (7800 acres) and has a maximum depth 46 feet (14.3 m). Species found include: largemouth and smallmouth bas, walleye, muskie, bluegill, yellow perch and black crappie.

Georgian Bay – While not a lake per se Georgian Bay is one of the largest bodies of freshwater in the world encompassing 1,500,000 hectares (3,706,580 acres) with a maximum depth of 540 feet (165 m) and it is one of Ontario’s premier fishing destinations. Georgian Bay is huge and can be found by taking Highway 400 north until it ends at Parry Sound which is located on the shores of Georgian Bay. Great fishing can be found for the following species: northern pike, muskie, walleye, chinook salmon, coho salmon, lake trout, brown trout, steelhead, largemouth and smallmouth bass, and yellow perch.

Lake Erie – The shallowest of the Great Lakes it is still the 12th largest lake in the world and is also one of its best fisheries. Lake Erie provides a large portion of the Ontario-US border and encompasses 2,571,900 hectares (6,355,303 acres) with a maximum depth of 210 feet (64 metres). To reach Lake Erie anywhere from Niagara falls to Windsor just head south and you will eventually hit it. Abundant stocks can be found of walleye, smallmouth bass and steelhead.

Lake Huron – This huge inland sea which is the 3rd largest lake in the world forms the border between Ontario and the U.S. from Sarnia to Sault Ste Marie and encompasses 5,959,600 hectares (14,726,492 acres) with a maximum depth of 750 feet (229 metres). To reach it anywhere from From Barrie south just head west and you will eventually run into Lake Huron. Fish species include: walleye, chinook salmon, coho salmon, lake trout, brown trout, steelhead, smallmouth bass and yellow perch.

Lake Ontario – While small by Great Lakes standards this is still the 14th largest lake in the world. And encompasses an area 1,947,700 hectares (4,812,871 acres) with a maximum depth of 778 feet (237 metres). Head south anywhere from Kingston to Burlington and you will hit Lake Ontario. Species found include: chinook salmon, coho salmon, lake trout, brown trout, steelhead, and northern pike.

Lake St Clair – This small lake encompassing 110,000 hectares (271,815 acres) with a maximum depth of 21.3 feet (6.5 m) connects Lake Huron to Lake Erie and separates Canada from the US at Detroit. To reach the lake travel Highway 401 to Windsor than head north. Fish stocks include: walleye, muskie, smallmouth bass and yellow perch.

Algonquin Park – One of the worlds great fishing destinations the park includes numerous small lakes, rivers, brooks and streams that will keep an angler busy every waking moment. Species you will find include smallmouth bass, brook trout, and lake trout.


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