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Looking to plan ahead for the ideal spot to fish next season? Then you’re in luck because the Kawartha Lakes – just a short drive north of Bethany – are a fisherman’s paradise! The Kawartha Lakes boasts one of the largest varieties of fresh water fish in Ontario.

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Pickerel, Muskie, Carp, Bull Head, Rock Bass, Pumpkinseed, Bluegill, Black Crappie, Rock Bass, Sunfish, Smallmouth Bass, Perch, and Largemouth Bass can be found in Balsam Lake.

While in Cameron Lake you can catch Pickerel, Muskie, Carp, Rock Bass, Sunfish, Smallmouth Bass, Largemouth Bass, Perch, Brown Bullhead, Pumpkinseed, and Bluegill.

Shadow Lake features Pickerel, Lake Trout, Muskie, Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass, Sunfish, Carp, and Bullhead.

Look out for Pickerel, Muskie, Sunfish, Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass, Brown Bullhead, Yellow Perch, Pumpkinseed, and Rock Bass while at Four Mile Lake.

Pigeon Lake is home to Rock Bass, Sunfish, Largemouth Bass, Carp, Muskie, and Pickerel.

And Sturgeon Lake, which is known for its ‘Y’ shape, is excellent for fishing Muskie, Brown Bullhead, Carp, Rock Bass, Sunfish, Smallmouth Bass, Largemouth Bass, Perch and Pickerel, Pumpkinseed, Bluegill, and Black Crappie.

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You can also check out www.ExploreKawarthaLakes.com for more detailed information on each of the lakes including depths, shoreline lengths, and other interesting features.

Because fishing in Ontario is regulated by the Federal and Provincial Governments, be sure to visit the Ministry of Natural Resources website for licensing information and other rules and regulations.

If you just want to test out the sport of fishing or want to introduce fishing to your children, you have an opportunity twice year to fish without a license. Two weekends a year are designated – check the website at http://www.ontariofamilyfishing.com/ for future dates.

If you’re heading out to fish in the autumn, you will have the added benefit of catching the stunning fall colors on your journey to your favorite lake.

Looking for bait, tackle or other fishing supplies? The are plenty of options:

Kawartha Lakes Outdoors 38 Taylor St., Bobcaygeon 705-738-BAIT (2248) www.huntandfishkawartha.com

Kawartha Lakes Bait and Tackle 10 Queen St., Lindsay 705-878-3474

Marks Worm Warehouse 1 mile South of Bobcaygeon on Hwy. 36 705-738-5743

Canadian Tire – Fenelon Falls 160 Lindsay St., Fenelon Falls 705-887-9623

Canadian Tire – Lindsay 377 Kent St. W, Lindsay 705-324-2176

Emm’s Sports Outdoors 103 Queen St., Lindsay 705-324-6653

Kawartha Lakes Trading Post 5584 Hwy. 35, Rosedale 705-887-3116

Norland Convenience Bait & Tackle 7491 Hwy 35, Coboconk 705-454-1111

Long Beach Live Bait & Tackle 429 Long Beach Road, Cameron 705-359-3710 www.longbeachtackle.com

…and if you’re interested in letting someone else do the hard work you can book a charter and let the pros guide you to their favourite spots:

A Reelpro Guide Service Telephone: 705-238-3637 www.reelpro.ca

Bass Class Professional Fishing School Telephone: 705-879-0210 www.bassclass.ca

Blitzcreek Pro Fishing Charters www.blitzcreek.com

Crooked Lake Wilderness Lodge Telephone: 705-953-9844 www.crookedlakewildernesslodge.ca

Kawartha Lakes Fishing Charters Telephone:  705-292-5449 www.kawarthafishing.com

Kawartha Lakes Outdoors Telephone: 705-738-BAIT (2248)  www.huntandfishkawartha.com

Kawartha Lakes Guiding Service Telephone: 705-786-0912/705-934-0109  www.kawarthalakesguiding.com

Living the Dream Musky Charters Telephone: 905-903-3096 www.livingthedreammuskycharters.com

There is no excuse for not at least trying your hand at fishing in the miles of lakes surrounding Bethany!

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Yes it has been a long winter. Many people have been left with cabin fever as a result of the colder than normal temperatures.

Everyone is looking forward to change cabin fever to spring fever for obvious reasons. But you don’t have to wait for spring to go fishing. Why not go ice fishing now?

Ice Fishing

There are lots of places to ice fish near Bethany Ontario.

Several years ago the Ministry of Natural Resources made some changes, opening up ice fishing in the Kawartha Lakes to the public. Now, Fishermen consider this region to be one of Ontario’s finest ice fishing areas.

What can you catch? You might be surprised! Bluegill, yellow perch, black crappie, and northern pike have been turned into delicious fish fries – or thrown back!

There are dozens of lakes to choose from: Balsam Lake, Brighton Bay in Lake Ontario, Cameron Lake, Chemong Lake, Lake Dalrymple, Rice Lake, Sturgeon Lake, Lake Scugog, Crowe Lake and the lower Trent River are just some of the locations well serviced by outfitters.

Ice Fishing

Enjoy ice fishing!

There are a variety of resorts, providing overnight accommodations in cottages or condos, 2 or 4 person ice huts, bait, ice fishing poles, propane heat, fishing licenses…and if you want, you can even rent the services of an ice fishing guide!

You can get onto smaller lakes sooner in the winter as they freeze faster and then safely move to larger lakes as the winter progresses

If you are new to ice fishing, do a bit of research first – unless of course you are taking a guide along with you. Read magazine articles, watch how-to videos, and even consider attending seminars. The more you know, the more successful – and safe – your venture will be.

You will notice many fishermen have a variety of rods, each rigged a little differently. The variety lets you be prepared for the different sizes and species you might encounter, how active the fish actually are and how deep you plan to fish. The more prepared you are the better off you will be since changing lures in sub-zero weather is not a lot of fun.

If you are going to a lake for the first time, one that may not have a lot of ice fishing activity already, it is critical that you test the depth of the ice. Buy a basic auger to test the ice and to provide you with a 6 to 8 inch circumference to get started.

And finally, dress accordingly. Wear winter gear like insulated snow pants and a heavy winter parka. Good gloves, a toque, and a pair of insulated waterproof boots round out the ice fisherman’s most important attire on the ice. You might also want to bring some extra gloves, a balaclava, and a scarf.

Enjoy some ice fishing while there is still time. It will not last much longer. One minute we’re talking about ice fishing and before long we’ll be talking about the maple syrup running!

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