fisherman walking along the riverbank

Access to land along the Ganaraska River is temporarily restricted in response to the Provincial Emergency and Stay at Home Order

Effective Friday, April 9, 2021 closure of land south of the railway tracks (excluding the beaches), the municipal boat launch and the Fishway (also known as the Fish Ladder / Corbett's Dam).

Effective Friday, April 23, 2021 (to align with the start of the trout fishing season) closure of remainder of municipal properties that border the Ganaraska River from Molson Street South to Lake Ontario. 

Read the media release for additional details about the temporary closures. 

The Ganaraska River in the Municipality of Port Hope offers some of the most diverse fishing experiences in the Province and draws people from far distances. Some of the best trout and salmon fishing in the Ontario happens here, with fish reaching up to 40 pounds. The Ganaraska River is one of the healthiest rivers in the Province, populated almost entirely with wild naturally-reproducing fish.

The River offers various year-round fishing opportunities. A variety of fish enter the River, including:

  • Salmon
  • Rainbow Trout (Steelhead)
  • Pyke
  • Walleye
  • Perch
  • Catfish
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Freshwater Drum

Fishing guidelines

Important fishing regulation information and a handy map can be found in the River Watch Brochure authored by the Ganaraska River Conservation Authority.

 Rules and regulations

  • Ontario Fishing Regulations

  • The Ganaraska River is in Fisheries Management Zone 17

  • Fishing is not permitted in the Fish Sanctuary from Highway 401 downstream to the south side of the Jocelyn Street Bridge

  • Fishing is prohibited on the Ganaraska River between 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. from August 15 to September 30 from the Robertson Street Bridge to the Jocelyn Street Bridge



  • Atlantic salmon - catch and release only
  • Bass - open from the third Saturday in June to December 15 of each year
  • Trout and salmon - open from the fourth Saturday in April to September 30 of each year

Fish ladder

The Ganaraska River Fishway is also known as the fish ladder and is operated by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and local volunteers. During the month of April up to 8,000 migratory Rainbow Trout or Steelhead make their journey up the Ganaraska River to spawn. Staging and spawning also takes place in the riverbed below the fish ladder.

During the fall, the salmon make their way up the river to begin spawning. You can watch the fish swim upstream and jump up the fish ladder that was built to get them past Corbett's Dam.