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Fly Fishing The Speed River

Information on The Speed river. This river was once known as a prime Brook Trout stream in southern Ontario. That all changed over a century ago when the river was abused and polluted. Today the river is mainly a warm water fishery playing host to pike, bass, carp and various species of pan fish. Some of its tributaries and its upper reaches may still hold populations of Brook trout.

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The Speed River is a river in
southern Ontario which flows from the centre of Southern Ontario near Erin,
Ontario to empty into The Grand River, an tributary of Lake Erie. The River flows through the man made Guelph Lake resevoir north of Guelph, Ontario. Until the late 1800s, the Speed river was home to an excellent population of Brook trout. Human intervention and the construction of dams and mills along the river as well as excessive logging destroyed the environment in which Brook trout are able to survive.

The main tributaries of the Speed River are:

  • Eramosa River
  • Lutteral Creek
  • Marden Creek

The upper sections of the Speed river and its tributaries are generally cold water streams supporting excellent trout habitat. Nearly every inch up the upper reaches flows through private land, and landowner permission is an absolute requirement. There is a trout hatchery located just outside of the village of Oustic.

Communities on the Speed River

  • Orton
  • Guelph
  • Cambridge

The lower sections of the river, including Guelph Lake reservoir are home to an excellent population of Northern Pike, Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass, Perch, panfish and Carp. As the season warms, the fishing gets better and better! I’ve had countless days in July without leaving Guelph and hooking into 30 plus bass. The pike can be a little harder to find in the river, but Guelph lake hosts a large population of Northerns, some pushing the 48″ mark easily!

I tend to stick to larger streamer patterns when fly fishing the Speed river. The fish are not line shy, so a hefty leader is no problem, and essential when battling some of these brutes in the weeds. Here are some excellent recipes for streamer fishing on the Speed:

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One Comment

  1. Sasha G Radisic
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

    few years ago i fly fished trough upper part of speed river…and have come across a nice size Brooke, the bull was minimum of 13inch in length… i have had fished speed river for over 16yrs and that was my first to catch a trout at this river!!!