Hi Grant,

I recall you mentioning fishing the Saugeen where the main river meets the Rocky. How can you access this area? I was up on the weekend checking it out and cannot seem to find any way to access this part of the river. Any info would be greatly appreciated!

P.S. I am getting tired of fishing the Grand and Credit Rivers with the 90,000 other anglers.

Best Regards,

Jason

Grant Ferris <Send E-Mail> -- Wednesday, 4 7 01, at 9:19 a.m.

Hi Jason:

I've heard about the fishing pressure on the Credit and Grand Rivers, shows how popular fishing and especially fly fishing has become. If only provincial and municipal governments could get their noses out of the casino money traps and see that good fishing and good access would generate plenty of money for communities without doing anyone harm...
Oh well.

Yes, I have walked in to the forks where the Rocky and the main Saugeen meet but not for a few years. Lots of "No Trespassing" signs block the route now I would imagine. It's pretty shallow to canoe in from Durham but no one can stop you from doing so legally. I used a topographical map last time and walked across a couple of fields. It wasn't too hard as I took my 70 year-old mother with me. She fished off the cliff with a worm while I fly-fished from the other side of the river during a hatch of may flies so thick I couldn't open my mouth.

I caught a few small trout while she battled a big brown for five minutes before losing it. No way she could crank it up the cliff face with 6 pound test line and I couldn't get near the deep side to help her.

The Rocky is all posted now in that area, it was and maybe still is owned by a guy who used to do art work for fishing magazines, a good artist too. He sure got upset when me and a chum walked in to his private spot one year, using our 20 year-old route that he hadn't posted. I had no idea that he had posted the property and told him but he got mighty cranky even so.

The Saugeen still holds some mighty brown trout but access is difficult and that may be what has preserved them because it isn't catch and release like the Grand around Fergus. A flat-bottom boat that doesn't draw much water or a canoe that can take a beating will take you from the first bridge below Durham to Hanover when the water isn't too low. The problem is too much good water and very spooky fish that rarely feed until dark. Plan on staying overnight along the way but for peace of mind and good manners, ask the property owner first.

You can also access nice water by canoeing down from Hanover to Walkerton. There are trout areas and sections of the river with enormous smallmouth bass as well. Alternatively, you can access the river by canoe be launching at Lobies Park at Walkerton and drift downstream.

Once you get half way between Walkerton and Paisley it is more bass and muskie water than trout water, it simply gets too warm. Also, it is a lot longer between bridges than you may be used to.

Grant in Bruce County.