Orangeville, being situated in what is often referred to as “The Headwaters” region, has many great fishing opportunities for the angler – both adults and children alike. With an abundance of rivers, streams, ponds and lakes in the area, many make Orangeville their hub when fishing in the area. With hotel, motel and bed & breakfast accommodations available along with great restaurants, it’s a perfect town to visit and stay in when you’re planning a fishing trip in the area.
The area can even boast of 4 season angling opportunities from when trout season opens in spring and right through to winter with ice fishing available at the edge of town in Island Lake. In addition to publicly accessed waters, there are also several private clubs and “pay as you go” trout farms.
There are a wide variety of species of fish that are available, and the fly angler will be happy to know that this is a great area to bring your fly rod to. Many of the streams around Orangeville have some very fine brook and brown trout populations, and course, other species may also be caught on the fly.
The Headwaters Rivers
Just east of Orangeville near Highway 9, the Humber River begins and the angler who wants to do some walking can find brook trout in these upper reaches of the river. A short distance north, one can wade or walk along the banks of the Nottawasaga or it’s tributaries. Again, brook trout may be found, and depending on the season, a little downstream both rainbow trout and salmon migrate from Georgian Bay.
The Credit River forms from the many small streams and springs in the Orangeville area and offers some amazing fly fishing opportunities, especially south of town near the Forks of the Credit. Not only can the fishing be great, but the scenery is spectacular as the river descends down the Niagara Escarpment.
West of Orangeville, the Grand River begins it’s long winding course, and most fly anglers will know of the world class brown trout fishery, south of the Shand Dam near Fergus, and only a twenty minute drive from Orangeville. The Shand Dam creates Lake Bellwood which offers fishing for a variety of species including pike, walleye, smallmouth bass and perch. The upper Grand River can be quite shallow in the summer months especially during dry conditions, but the wading angler can get themselves into bass and pike in some areas that have deeper pockets of water.
Private Clubs & Trout Farms
There are several clubs and trout farms where you can either apply for an annual membership or go for part of a day and pay for what you catch. One of our favourites is Humber Springs Trout Club, however this is a members only club with varying prices for individual or family membership. Situated just off of Highway 9, about 7 minutes drive east of Orangeville, the club offers a superb location to fly fish for rainbow trout in their three ponds. Fish can be caught from shore or you can also take out rowboats that they provide. If you’re really lucky, you might get yourself into a monster sized brook trout that may have found it’s way into the north pond by way of a tributary of the Humber River.
North of town near Shelburne is the Primrose Trout Farm and is a well known location for families or individuals that just want to be practically guaranteed some fresh fish for dinner. It’s a great place to take children on their first fishing trip as getting one hooked is practically a sure thing.
Island Lake, while officially in Mono Township, sits at the edge of town on the east side of Highway 10. Originally called the “Orangeville Reservoir,” it’s a great place to fish for pike, bass and perch. It’s located within the Island Lake Conservation Area, and if arriving by car, there is an entrance fee. If you walk or bike into the conservation area, admission is free and access can be had via a walking trail near Home Hardware, across the road, or at the main gate. In addition to the fishing, there is a beautiful trail that has been constructed around the lake providing beautiful scenic views.
In winter, the lake provides ice fishing opportunities where you can angle for the perch and pike at that time of year.
There are actually quite a few more opportunities near the town, but we can’t give all our secrets away! Come on out and explore for yourself; you just be surprised at the great fishing opportunities there are so close to town!