Irvineside Farm

Irvineside Farm

Irvineside Farm

Bait. Tackle. Fly. Fish on.

Fly fishing in the Grand River in Fergus, Ontario.
Fly fishing in the Grand River in Fergus, Ontario.
Photo by Kelly Waterhouse

Whether you’re an expert sportsmen in fly fishing or a novice angler who just wants to experience the thrill of a fish on the line, the Grand River and its tributaries, including the Irvine River, offer world-class recreational fishing. This isn’t a fish tale – it’s true. These waters are legendary.

Plan your fishing trip and plan to stay with us. Glamping in the great outdoors at Irvineside Farm will bring you within minutes to some of the finest fishing in the province. You’re going to love it here.

Protected by the Grand River Conservation Authority, (and all of us who cherish this beautiful environment), the waters provide an excellent natural environment for several species of fish, including:

  • Brown Trout
  • Walleye
  • Yellow Perch
  • Northern Pike
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Carp
  • White Sucker
  • Bullhead

Irvineside Farm is located within 5 to 10 minutes of some of the best fishing locales, with easy access to a world-renowned brown trout fishery, known as the Tailwater. This stretch of the Grand River flows from the Shand Dam, at Belwood Lake, through the historic towns of Fergus and Elora, weaves through the Elora Gorge and on to the town of West Montrose, in Woolwich Township (approx. 15 minutes from Irvineside Farm).

The cool water released from the Shand Dam (Belwood Lake) reservoir makes the Tailwater a good habitat for brown trout. Each spring, the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry stocks about 40,000 trout in the river. As a result, this region around Fergus and Elora has been acclaimed as one of the best fly-fishing spots in North America.

The potential of these areas was identified as one of the “best bets” in the Grand River Fisheries Management Plan.

The Grand River flows from the Shand Dam, at Belwood Lake through the heart of downtown Fergus, with plenty of easy access to the river through the area. Photo by Kelly Waterhouse

Here’s a few of the most popular spots – according to the fish!

  • Belwood Lake Conservation Area:
    • Belwood Lake is great for fishing, with a small lake that leads into the Shand Dam. Bring the boat, canoe, or fish from shore. The Grand River Conservation Authority park includes two ponds stocked with trout, ideal for younger anglers under the age of 13.  
  • Shand Dam:
    • Downstream of the Shand Dam that flows from Belwood Lake is one of the most sought-after fishing spots, whether you’re fly-fishing or casting from shore.
Belwood Lake Photo by Keegan Taylor
  • Blair Park & Gow Park at the Grand River Arboretum Trail:
    • Blair Park & Gow Park are across the river from one another. Perfect for fly or cast fishing, the waters are shallow enough to wade in with many areas along the trail to drop the lure.
  • Pierpoint Park:
    • Pierpoint Park is an area local anglers know well. The river is wide, the waters are shallow and the fly fishing is exceptional.
  • Confederation Park:
    • The waterfall at Confederation Park is ideal for creating pools of fishing spots below as the river gains speed heading to downtown Fergus. This is a popular fishing spot and a great place to have a picnic. 
Confederation Park in Fergus is a great place for fishing and a perfect place to kick back and enjoy the day, just minutes from downtown Fergus. Photo by Kelly Waterhouse
  • Templin Gardens:
    • A historic landmark in the heart of downtown Fergus, the limestone stairs in Templin Gardens lead down to the water, creating easy access to the river. Here the water is deeper, as the waterfall and rapid water flow moves along creating a whirlpool effect that makes fish happy.
  • Aboyne Trail – Trestle Bridge:
    • This section of the Grand River provides waters shallow enough for waders and plenty of shoreline that is easily accessible. Below the Trestle Bridge, the Aboyne Trail is a great launch point to explore the river in either direction.
The Aboyne Trail in the shadow of the Trestle Bridge is an ideal, tranquil spot for your catch of the day. Photo by Kelly Waterhouse
  • Bissel Park:
    •  The waterfall at Bissell Park brings the river flowing into downtown Elora. This spot is known for cast fishing as the water gains speed here.
  • Wilson Flats:
    • On the outskirts of Elora, as the Grand River emerges from the Elora Gorge across the flat lands heading westward, you’ll find an ideal setting for fly fishing in the steady waters at Wilson Flats. It’s shallow, but rod’n reel fishermen like the challenge too.

For everything you need to know, talk to our LOCAL fishing professionals, Tania & Scott, owners of Grand River Outfitting & Fly Shop in Fergus. They’ll hook you up!

Please note: Special fishing regulations are in effect in this area. And, as river levels can change rapidly with the release of the Shand Dam, we remind you to be consult the Grand River Conservation Authority’s website for river flow updates.

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