Smallmouth bass fishing on the Grand River with platform rafts has added a new enjoyment to the sport of fishing in Paris. Normally the riverbanks cannot be walked because the land is privately owned and restricted. This forces fishermen to wade the boulder bottom and wrestle river current when angling for smallmouth bass in the Grand River. The use of platform rafts resolves the wading problem.
With platform raft fishing fisherman now have access to miles of shoreline with excellent small mouth bass fishing all along the Grand River. People of all sizes and ages can enjoy a time together with friends or families to fish as they drift down the Grand. The platform rafts allow anyone of any physical condition the opportunity to get out and fish some of the best spots for small mouth bass.
For families wanting a day of actually catching fish, the platform rafting is a great way to travel together. The rafts offer a safe experience that allows children the freedom of movement and togetherness. There is the joy of no mosquitoes or black flies as the rafts drift through a wilderness of forest, fresh springs and wildlife.
The platform decks normally accommodate two fly fishermen standing or 4 people seated with a guide steering in the back. Those that spin-cast can sit in deck chairs elevated above the water level to easily see striking fish. The best thing about raft platform fishing is the speed of the raft… it allows excellent casting opportunities at every pool.
These Grand River smallmouth bass platform excursions are with experienced guides that know the fishing spots well. The expertise of the guides increases the number of strikes and fish caught. The guides in the Paris area conduct trips on two sections of the river. The upper Grand from Glen Morris to Paris is “catch & keep” or the lower Grand from Paris to Brant Park is zoned “catch & release”.
The reason the smallmouth bass fishing has improved is due to the aggressive Fish Management Plan implemented in 1995. Along certain areas of the river special angling regulations have been introduced to protect the smallmouth bass. Anglers must use barbless hooks, no live bait and do catch and release. This restricted zone is called Exceptional Waters between Paris and Brant Conservation area and produces excellent large fish.
July 1st in Southern Ontario is the start of the smallmouth bass season on the Grand River. It is normal to catch 40 to 50 bass in a four hour drift in the Paris area. The fish range from small to under 24 inches with lots of action. At the start of the season late afternoon-evening trips produce some of the best results. For visitors arriving on the Grand without fishing gear and tackle, the Big Catch Bait & Tackle shop in Paris will rent all equipment plus a loaded tackle box for $20.
The Grand River is only one hour west of Toronto. It is easily accessible by the 401 or 403 Highways. For those wishing overnight accommodations there is the countryside River Ridge B&B in the area or the elegant Arlington Hotel. For those wishing to camp, some of the fish guiding companies in the area have secluded campsites right on the river.
Smallmouth bass fishing on the Grand River is exceptional… but so is the scenery and abundance of wildlife. The closeness of the Grand River allows people to get up in the morning… drive an hour for excellent fishing… and be in their own bed at night.