More Angling in the Area
Conservation Halton’s watershed includes 948 square kilometres of land drained by seventeen creeks that flow into Lake Ontario along 36 km. of shoreline. The Sixteen Mile, Bronte and Grindstone Creek watersheds arise above the Niagara Escarpment and dominate the landscape. A number of smaller creeks originate below the Niagara Escarpment with all watershed creeks draining into Lake Ontario. The fisheries of the watershed have changed dramatically since Europeans first settled the area. Native species such as Atlantic salmon have disappeared from the watershed while exotic species such as rainbow trout, brown trout and carp have been introduced and now form self-sustaining populations. The watershed provides a wide range of angling opportunities ranging from small stream angling for brook trout to reservoir fishing for largemouth bass to open water angling for trout and salmon on Lake Ontario. Here are some additional locations for angling. For directions to these sites click here to view the watershed map.
Sixteen Mile Creek
The lower reaches of the Sixteen Mile Creek, downstream from Milton, provide fishing opportunities for smallmouth bass and migratory species such as rainbow trout, lake-run brown trout, chinook salmon and white sucker.
Upstream from Milton to the Kelso Reservoir, a resident brown trout population provides angling opportunities throughout the spring and summer months. Adult rainbow trout (steelhead) are present here in the spring during spawning. Juvenile rainbow trout can also be caught prior to their downstream migration to Lake Ontario. It is recommended that these fish be released to return as adults. Upstream of the Kelso Reservoir, the West Branch splits into a network of tributaries that arise in headwater wetlands above the Niagara Escarpment. Brook trout are found in several of these tributaries.
From Bronte Harbour upstream to Lowville, the lower reaches of Bronte Creek provide fishing opportunities for resident fish species such as smallmouth bass and migratory species such as rainbow trout, lake-run brown trout, chinook salmon and white sucker. Special regulations, including permanent sanctuaries, seasonal sanctuaries and extended fall seasons apply to various sections of the lower reaches of Bronte Creek.
Between Lowville and Progreston, Bronte Creek and its tributaries support a resident brook and brown trout fishery. Brook trout are native to the watershed while brown trout were introduced in the 1950’s.
Upstream of Progreston, Bronte Creek and its tributaries are relatively pristine and support resident brook trout. Brown trout were stocked in Bronte Creek upstream of Progreston in the 1950’s and remnant populations of this species may still occur.
Annual stocking of rainbow trout (average 50,000 fry and fingerlings) and chinook salmon (average 35,000 fry and fingerlings) is carried out by the Ministry of Natural Resources downstream of Lowville. Brown trout (average 13,000 fry and fingerlings) are usually stocked off Bronte Harbour.
From the Burlington Bay estuary upstream to Waterdown, the lower reaches of Grindstone Creek provide fishing opportunities for resident fish species such as smallmouth bass and migratory species such as rainbow trout, lake-run brown trout, chinook salmon and white sucker. Northern pike, black crappie, white bass, white perch and brown bullhead are commonly angled from the estuary.
Above the Escarpment, the fish community is dominated by forage fish species such as creek chub and white sucker. Largemouth bass, smallmouth bass and pumpkinseed may also be found.
The Hayesland Swamp, located upstream of 5th Concession West, forms the headwaters of Grindstone Creek. This wetland offers a warmwater fishery for species such as largemouth bass, yellow perch, pumpkinseed, brown bullhead and carp.
A number of small streams flow into Lake Ontario and Burlington Bay through Burlington and Oakville. Warm stream temperatures and limited flows restrict the angler-accessible fish community during the summer months to species such as creek chub, common shiner and white sucker, however, these species can provide enjoyable angling, especially for children.
Seasonal angling opportunities are also available as migratory fish species from Lake Ontario and Burlington Bay enter the watercourses. During the spring months, white suckers enter most, if not all, of these systems to spawn. Stray rainbow trout may also enter the lower reaches of these watercourses during the spring, providing unexpected excitement when encountered. Chinook salmon and brown trout may also stray into these streams in the fall, especially during periods of high flow.
Lake Ontario Shoreline
Lake Ontario provides both shore-based and open water fishing opportunities. Piers at the mouth of Bronte Creek, Sixteen Mile Creek and the Burlington Canal offer shore anglers an opportunity to experience exciting trout and salmon action during the spring and fall months. Boat launches along the lakeshore provide anglers with access to the open water trout and salmon fishery during all but the coldest months of the year.