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Fly Fishing the Saugeen River

This river is famous for producing exceptionally large smallmouth bass which come to the surface for topwater offerings. • Credit: The New Fly Fisher


In Southwestern Ontario, the Saugeen River runs through the small town of Walkerton. This river is famous for producing exceptionally large smallmouth bass. These bass are known because they like to come to the surface for topwater offerings like poppers.

One of the top guide services that take anglers on the Saugeen is Grindstone Angling, run by John Valk. John has been guiding on this river for over 20 years now and understands it well. He can tell you the stories of the massive smallmouth bass that are taken every season on topwater flies.

How big are we talking? Four-pound bass is common, with specimens of 5 to 7 pounds caught and released every season. Favourite colours for poppers include yellow, black and green. Six- and 7-weight rods are recommended with 10-pound leaders attached to floating lines.

This fishery has become world famous because it is unique in North America. For fly fishers anywhere, a float down this river with Grindstone Angling should be on your "to-do" list!

Recommended guide service: www.grindstoneangling.com or phone (905) 689-0880

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