Just one hour from Toronto we experienced guided platform raft fishing on the Grand River in Paris. The river offers abundant small mouth bass, fall/spring rainbow trout… as well as pike, walleye and big carp.
The platform fishing was excellent. Two fishermen could easily fly fish for bass or trout with lots of space. For those that bait cast, there were deck chairs elevated above the water allowing easy vision of striking fish.
The speed of the raft allowed many casting opportunities. At each pool and swift there was lots of time to hit every spot with numerous casts.
In April to mid-May rainbow trout or steelhead are abundant in the river… as the river gets warmer these fish head for Lake Erie… but return in September, offering lots of action. There was also excellent fishing for rainbow trout and brown trout in the pristine cold waters of Whiteman’s Creek, which joins the Grand River.
In July/August the small mouth bass dominate the Paris section of the Grand River. Locals expressed no surprise at catching 40 bass in several hours at the beginning of the bass season.
Pike and pickerel were present in this section of the Grand River, but minor in comparison to the trout and bass. The nearby Nith River offers much better pike and pickerel fishing opportunities.
People that are traveling in the area and in need of tackle can simply rent from the Big Catch fishing shop in Paris for twenty dollars per day. If looking for accommodations, the countryside setting of the River Ridge Bed & Breakfasts caters to fishermen. It offers excellent accommodations and breakfast… but it is the soothing outdoor hot tub for the tired fisherman that appeases most!
Part of the Grand River in this area has been zoned Exceptional Waters to preserve the fish populations against heavy fishing pressure. This barb-less, bait-less, catch & release zone contains some very healthy fish populations.
The biggest surprise was soaking in a wilderness fishing experience so near to the city of Toronto. The platform raft fishing offers some of the best fishing on the Grand in Southern Ontario. Definitely a great river for a days fishing!