As one of the top river guides in Ontario, I get asked the question “where can I fish on the Credit River?” I know the credit river better than most anglers since I have fished it for 36 years and these are fishing access spots from Lake Ontario to the Upper Credit River.
Where Can I Fish On The Credit River?
Anglers can fish the Credit River at the mouth of the river and up to Erindale park for steelhead and salmon all year long. Fishing the Credit River for trout is best between Inglewood and Alton. There may other great fishing spots on the Credit River between the mouth and Orangeville.
Fishing The Lower Credit River
Lets start with fishing the lower Credit River and work our way up the river.
Anglers can do very well fishing at the mouth of the Credit River for Salmon and steelhead when they are staging or starting to run up the river.
Anglers can fish off the pier at JJ Plaus Park.
Anglers can also fish the other side of the river and out into Lake Ontario at J.C. Saddington Park.
This is flat and slow water like fishing in a lake. The fishing can be good in the spring for steelhead and in September for huge salmon. Anglers casting lures can do very well here if they hit the runs of salmon just as they start.
A favorite lure for this area is spoons like the Little Cleos which can be cast far out into the river and lake. Large crankbaits and inline spinners can be very good too. To see my favorite lures go to 4 Best Lures For Steelhead – A Pro Guides Recommendations.
Anglers can fish the Credit River for largemouth and smallmouth bass in the slower water of the lower river. There are also good populations of huge carp and pike in this stretch of the Credit River.
About 1 km up the river from the lake is where this river goes from a slow wide river to looking more like a steelhead and trout river with rapids and pools around every bend. Much of the first section goes through 2 golf courses and the land here is private property.
Anglers that want to fish the Credit river can access the lower Credit River at Erindale Park at Dundas Street and walk for a long way up or down the river.
This section of Credit River gets good runs of steelhead which usually start in April and can last until Mid-May.
The salmon will arrive in large numbers after the rains in September and October. The salmon on the Credit river are large and can grow up to 40 pounds.
Be sure to check out my page Ontario Salmon Fishing for more details on when and how to fish for these huge fish. https://ontariotroutandsteelhead.com/ontario-salmon
This section of Erindale Park is open year-round and anglers can fish here in the winter with good fishing. There are sometimes big migratory brown trout mixed in with the steelhead that will hold over in this section during the winter months.
You can also access the Credit River at the Upper Erindale park off of Burnhamthrope
Stay warm when winter fishing but checking out my page Fishing In The Winter – Stay Warm With These 10 Tips.
I consider fishing in the lower Credit river can be good anywhere downriver of the Norval Dam in Norval. Both the salmon and steelhead have limited access up to this point and they do not get past the Norval dam to access the middle Credit River and the upper Credit River.
This Credit River salmon was caught by my client from England during high water in Erindale Park.
Many salmon will not get past Britania road because of the Streetsville Dam.
For guide trips on the lower credit river for steelhead and salmon check out A Perfect Drift Guide Company
Some of the best fishing spots on the Credit River in this lower section and once the trout season opens are:
- Ellis L Park – This can be a good spot for spring Steelhead but I believe it’s a fish sanctuary as of August 1st.
- Streetsville Memorial Park – See the fish jump at the Dam here. You can’t legally fish below the dam ( see fishing regulations). There is good water to fish here and most anglers fish for spring steelhead and carp here. There is also smallmouth bass in the area. There is not usually any summer trout in this section. At the time of writing, there are special regulations in this area and it is a fish sanctuary from August 1st to the 4th Saturday in April. Check the regulations to be sure.
- River Run Park – another stretch of river that you can fish for steelhead in the spring but is also a fish sanctuary after June 31st.
- Credit Meadows Park A good section for spring steelhead and maybe some bass with lots of water to fish.
There is an extended fall steelhead fishing section downriver of the 407 bridge and Britania road. Check the regulation on all these sections before you fish.
In this section, many anglers like to fish Meadowvale Conservation Area. This is a really nice stretch of river with some big pools to fish. Most anglers will fish steelhead and salmon in this section. As of now this section falls under special regulations and is open to fishing for salmon and steelhead until December 31st but check the regulations before you fish here.
These are more great spots to try between Meadowvale and Norval.
- Churchville Park – Lots of water to fish here. You can go down the river a long way and most anglers fish this section for Steelhead and Salmon but there are some brown trout in this section. It’s bigger water so all fishing methods will work in this stretch of o river.
- Eldorado Park – A big park with lots of great water to fish. This is a good spot for steelhead in the spring and can be good until about the 2nd week in May. Lures, fly fishing, and float fishing is good here. It has big pools, fast runs, and some packet water. You may find small rainbows and brown trout in this section. In the summer months, it’s best to fish early morning what the water is still cold or go way upriver to colder water.
- McNab Park – This is about as far up as the steelhead and the salmon get due to the impassible Norval Dam. This can be a good section for steelhead but is mostly shallow faster pocket water. There is often rainbow trout and some brown trout here but no brook trout. It’s good water to fly fish, float fish, and lures.
- Norval Park – Silver Creek – Credit River – I beleive you can acess the credit river from Silver
I will discuss access spots for the middle and upper Credit River below.
5 Best Methods For Fishing The Credit River
There are 4 or 5 methods that work very well for fishing on the Credit River.
Spin Fishing With Lures
Anglers can fish just about anywhere on the Credit river with lures. Lure like spinners, spoon, jigs and crankbaits can be excellent. For steelhead and salmon you will want to use larger lures in the 2.5 to 4.5 inch sizes.
When lure fishing for trout you will need smaller lures in the 1″ to 3″ size.
Spin Fishing With Floats
Float fishing is very popular with anglers on the lower river for salmon and steelhead. This can often be one of the most effective methods. Anglers can use spinning reels to float fish.
Anglers that want to float fish can use plastic and real worms, spawn bads, beads, and flies.
Spin Fishing – Bottom Bouncing Method
Bottom bouncing is one of the most effective methods in shallow and fast water where you can not get a good drift using a float or where lures do not work very well. You can see my most productive bottom bouncing techniques at Bottom Bouncing – 5 Proven Guide Tips For More Fish
The best methods for fishing the Credit river are Centerpin Fishing, Spin fishing with lures or with a float or with the Bottom Bouncing method.
Where Can I Fish On The Credit River? Middle Credit River
I consider the middle Credit river the section from the Norval dam in the town of Norval to Inglewood. You won’t find a more knowledgeable guide service for this middle section and the upper section than A Perfect Drift Guide Company. Give them a call if you want to learn how to fish the brown trout and brook trout on the Credit River.
Fishing the Credit River in this section is primarily for brown trout because the steelhead and salmon do not get into this stretch of river.
Because this stretch of river warms up too much during the summer months it does not have good populations of trout and therefore does not get fishing very much.
Anglers asking where can I fish the Credit River in this middle section can try these spots but unfortunately much of the land in this area is private property so access is limited.
- Glen Williams Park – A large stretch of river can be accessed and fished here. This is one of the best spots for fishing the Credit River in this section. You may catch rainbow, brown trout and the MNR has stocked Brook trout in this section some years. It’s also a wider bigger river so fly fishing and lures are great here. After June 30th this section is best fished before 11am or after 7pm.
- The Forge Park – A small section of river to fish know to have rainbow trout and brown trout. After June 30th it’s best to only fish before 11am or the last few hours before dark.
Where Can I fish On The Credit River? – Upper Credit River
Fishing the Credit River in the upper section will provide anglers with a challenge. There are sections of slow meadow runs and other sections of fast-flowing rapids. The challenge is getting the wild brown trout and the big brook trout to eat your bait and navigating all the bush along the river.
I consider the upper section of the river to be from the town of Inglewood to Orangeville.
This upper section is has restricted fishing regulations. As of now, it is a catch and releases ONLY section, with now organic bait allowed and only artificial baits with only 1 single point barbless hook permitted. This means no treble hooks allowed and all hooks must be barbless. There are also fish sanctuaries in this stretch. check the fishing regulations before you go.
This area is policed heavily by the local CO regularly and you must be sure there is no sign of a barb still on your hook.
The upper Credit river is mostly fished by fly fisherman for brown trout and brook trout but there are also some rainbow trout in the area.
The forks of the Credit is in this area and up both forks are waterfalls that the brown trout can not get above.
Above these waterfalls in brook trout with no brown trout.
The brown trout in this river are all wild and can be very difficult to catch. Using the right method taught by the guides at A Perfect Drift can help you catch the big ones.
Over the last few years the number of brown trout and brook trout have been decreasing. There are also a lot of fire ants in the area that can leave a nasty bite and angler are starting to avoid the upper Credit River.
Anglers that would like to try this area can try at these spots.
- Lloyd Wilson Centennial Park / Inglewood- Catch and release only. You can only walk a little way upriver to where the river goes behind the arena. Going up the river past the Arena is private property on both sides of the river and it is now being enforced. Going downriver of the bridge is all private property and the second property down has a big dog so do not go downriver. There are fire ants in this section so walk with caution.
- Forks of the Credit Provincial Park – Another very long hike to the river and it’s all uphill on the way back. This is not a spot if you are not in great shape. much of the river in this area is fast shallow water.
- Belfountain Conservation Area – This is a pay-to-access section and doesn’t open in the morning until around 8 am (I think) and it may close early so check the times on their website so you and your car don’t get locked in at night. You can fish above the falls here and catch brook trout and rainbow trout or fish below the falls and get brown trout too. Below the falls is very technical fast water. This is a great area for older anglers or even disabled anglers since it is a short walk to the river with lots of walk paths. You can go down river below the fall for a long way but it becomes very fast and with rough terrain so walking is very difficult below the falls.
- Charles Sauriol Conservation Area – This is brook trout-only water and it can be accessed from the bridge parking lot off of Charleston sideroad. There is good water up and down the river for a long way and it’s pretty easy walking with a short walk to the river. This area also gets hikers and dog walkers. There are fire ants in this section so walk with caution.
- Grange Public Lands – This is a public forest area that is popular with hikers and dog walkers but is a little know spot for fishing. It has the Credit river running through it but it also has Shaws Creek entering on this property. There are brook trout in this section but some of the river can be heavily wooded with hard to get to some spots. Shaws Creek can be good early in the season or in the morning when it’s still cold. I would not bother fishing the Shaws Creek section after June 30th because it gets too warm and would just stick to the Credit then.
- Upper Credit Conservation Area – Brook trout only water with a nice trail for dog walkers and hikers. You can go up or down river at this spot. Some of it is heavily wooded.
There is very little accessible water and good fishing between Orangeville and the Upper Credit Conservation area and in my opinion as a river guide that lives 5 minutes from this area, it’s not worth even trying.
Fishing the Credit River
I hope this answers the question ” where can I fish the Credit River?”.
The is a lot of private property upriver of Glen Williams. Remember, accessing private property is illegal and that leaving garbage, breaking things, and stealing things are great ways to get property closed off the fishing.
Even though it may not be your garbage, pick it anyways because that might keep the landowners happy and it might prevent them from closing their properties to anglers which can make fishing the Credit River better.