Whitby Harbour Pikefest – Episode 473

Pete with a Whitby Harbour Pike.

This Fish’n Canada episode is about going fishing with an open mind and being ready for the unexpected.

THE SCENARIO

It’s early fall, a time when fish species are about to make some life changes—and sometimes drastically. Lake and Speckled Trout, as well as Chinook Salmon, commence their spawning rituals; Largemouth and Smallmouth start their end of season migrations; big muskie seem to appear out of nowhere and throw on the feedbag. It’s a great time to be on the water.

On this show, Pete was fishing close to home in the Whitby Harbour, one of the many Lake Ontario harbours along the Greater Toronto Area. There’s a bit of incoming water there which should draw in some fish activity.

“I’m here with the assumption that the species list consists of Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth, and Pike,” says Pete. “And since it’s late in the season, there’s the possibility of Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout and Chinook Salmon.

“Although I could have trolled the entire area covering it in no time at all,” continues Pete, “I chose to cast it. That way I could hit little areas that would be impossible to access via trolling.”

Pete’s lure choices would be spoons, spinners and minnow-baits as his base presentations, as these are great choices for a variety of fish. As for gear, he ran a long 9’ Carrot Stix spinning rod as his main rig in case he hooked into a beast. He also chose a relatively light fluorocarbon leader since he was after numbers of fish and not a specific species like Pike. It was a chance he was willing to take.

JAWS OF IRON

Pete’s first fish encounter of the day was a smashing strike between the docks. But the fish didn’t hook up. He looked over his hooks to see if they were sharp and indeed they were. That was it for his lure check—but it wasn’t enough. On his very next cast, his spoon simply fell off during the retrieve. Upon Pete’s next inspection, he found his cross-locking snap opened up by that previous fish’s jaws. Amateur hour!

HARBOUR LINE CHOICES

When fishing in harbours or creek and river mouths where Salmon, Pike, and Bass reside, always try to go to the heavy side of your gear rather than light. Even though the water will probably be clear, it’s worth spooking a couple fish in a day knowing that the insurance of heavy equipment will ultimately pay off with more hooked fish. These areas are notorious for having wood and steel and skegs and so on—perfect areas for a big fish to wrap your line.

“I’d recommend starting with twenty to thirty-pound braid as a minimum,” Pete says. “And use only heavy duty cross-lock snap/swivel combos if you’re chucking spinners and spoons.

“That said, if you are not getting any strikes and you’re pretty sure it’s to due to your heavy line and terminal tackle, then, and only then, should you consider going lighter. That ends up usually being a fluorocarbon leader.”

AFTER CATCHING FIRST WHITBY HARBOUR PIKE

The beauty of harbour areas like the one Pete is in today is the number of game-fish species that reside here year-round. A trip to a place like this Whitby location is ultimately not about just Salmon or just Pike or just Bass; it’s about setting the hook on anything that is hungry or just feeling aggressive. And that’s the true definition of fishing.

THE SALMON SPECTACLE

Pete worked his way to the back of the harbour, essentially looking for cleaner water. What he found stunned him. Salmon after Salmon jumping out of the water, but none would bite his spoons (he tried many), spinners or minnow-baits. After what seemed like hundreds of casts, finally, a fish took a whack at the spoon. Of course, there was still no hookup, and the fish escaped.

“Wow, this is nuts,” says Pete. “I’m getting my butt handed to me in my newfound Salmon asylum. It’s crazy. I’ve got no problem with that, though. My Pikers will keep me sane.”

And back to the Pike he went.

HARBOUR INFO

There’s a number of harbour or creek areas along the GTA corridor that have a significant population of various fish species. Although Pete was fishing here in the fall, here’s a little lowdown of what to expect throughout the season.

  • Starting to the west, Frenchman’s Bay in Pickering has a great population of Pike, Largemouth Bass and Carp, along with some Salmon in the fall. It also has the odd Trout in spring and fall. We’d say it’s the cold water Pike fishing here that’s the #1 game in this town. Look for weeds near the deepest water. There’s limited shore access and a boat launch in Pickering Village at the marina.
  • The Whitby Harbour, which Pete was fishing on this shoot, obviously has a late Salmon run, as well as Northern Pike, Largemouth, Smallmouth, and Carp. There are also some Brown and Rainbow Trout in spring and fall. Fishing for big Salmon in three to six feet of this soft, silty weed-infested still water is pretty mind-blowing. This harbour has limited shore access and a very good boat launch.
  • Oshawa Harbour gets a nice run of Chinook Salmon, as well as some big Brown Trout come late August and deep into the fall. The Oshawa Creek is the big draw here. It has a nice run of Rainbow Trout in the spring, and during the summer there’s Carp, plus Large- and Smallmouth Bass. There’s a nice resident population of Pike here as well. The Oshawa Harbour has shore access along the west pier but, as of writing of this piece, the harbour boat launch is closed.
  • Bowmanville Creek is last on this eastward moving list. The Harbour and mouth area have a very large fall Salmon run, as well as some Brown and Rainbow Trout. The spring has a really good Rainbow run and, during the warmer months, there are Carp, Largemouth and some Smallmouth. Although we’ve never caught a Pike there, be assured: If they are in the previous harbours, they’re probably in Bowmanville as well! During the fall there is good shore access, as well as a great boat launch nearby.

Remember, these are just four of the many harbours and tributaries that dot the Great Lakes, all of which have fantastic potential for multi-species angling. Please respect the other boaters, marinas and general users of these areas.

HOW PETE DID

Pete’s day ended with a great catch of Pike, including a hefty 16-18 pounder—a true trophy fish for southern Ontario.

He did not end up catching any Chinook even though he knew, with all the mayhem around him, the area was full of Salmon.

Guess that means another trip next fall!


SPECIAL THANKS

2 Responses

Leave a Reply

Whitby Harbour Pikefest – Episode 473

THE GREAT ONTARIO GET-AWAY GIVE-AWAY

OFFICIAL MONTHLY CONTEST RULES

NO PURCHASE OF ANY KIND IS NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN.

 

  1. SPONSORS:  The Great Ontario Getaway Giveaway, also referred to as (GOGG) or (the Contest) or (the “Contests”) is sponsored by Fish’n Canada Ltd, Destination Northern Ontario and Nature and Outdoor Tourism Ontario.
  2. ENTRANTS: There are 3 ways to play the GOGG. As a contestant, as a voter or as both.
  3. HOW TO ENTER AS A CONTESTANT: The GOGG is a series of Photo/Video monthly contests. You can enter by navigating to fishncanada.com website and follow the link to the Great Ontario Getaway Giveaway contest page. For this Contest, receipt of an internet entry occurs when fishncanada.com servers record the entry information. Entry information includes, but not limited to, a photo or 60 second video submission, a short 300-character story and personal data such as name, address, phone number and email address. All entries must be complete and are subject to verification by the Sponsors, and in their sole discretion can accept  or refuse any such entries. Limit 1 Photo/Video entry per monthly contest. By entering the contest, you agree to receive emails from the “Sponsors” about but not limited to News, Offers, Tips and other promotional materials. You understand that you can unsubscribe at any time by clicking ‘UNSUBSCRIBE FROM THIS LIST’.

 

  1. HOW TO ENTER AS A VOTER: You can enter by navigating to fishncanada.com website and follow the link to the Great Ontario Getaway Giveaway contest page. For this Contest, receipt of a vote occurs when fishncanada.com servers record the entry information. Entry information includes, but not limited to, a vote for a particular contestant and your personal data such as name, address, phone number and email address.  All votes are subject to verification by the Sponsors, and in their sole discretion can accept  or refuse any such vote. Maximum votes per day is 5 with a 1 vote per day per contestant limit. Voters can enter 5 new votes each 24-hour period for the duration of the contests. Each vote will be converted to a ballot which will be accumulated throughout the GOGG contests and count towards the Grand Finale draw. By entering the contest, you agree to receive emails from the “Sponsors” about but not limited to News, Offers, Tips and other promotional materials. You understand that you can unsubscribe at any time by clicking ‘UNSUBSCRIBE FROM THIS LIST’.
  2. ELIGIBILITY: GOGG is open to legal residents of Canada who have reached the age of majority in their province or territory of residence at the time of entry, with the exception of employees of the Sponsors, related and affiliated companies, subsidiaries, departments or agencies, franchisees, suppliers, advertising and promotional agencies, contest administrators, and any other parties engaged in the development, production or distribution of Contest materials and those living in the same household.  By participating in this Contest, entrants acknowledge compliance with, and agree to be bound by, these Contest Rules.  Entrants who do not comply with any of the Contest Rules are subject to disqualification by the Sponsors, in the Sponsor’s sole discretion. Prize winners are only eligible to win 1 (one) prize for the duration of the contests. Once an entrant is selected as a segment winner, they are not eligible to win a contest prize again.
  3. CONTEST DATES AND TIMES: The contests begin on April 1st, 2021 at 3:00pm EST and end on August 31st. 2021 at 3:00pm EST after which time the contest will be closed and no further entries shall be accepted.

 

  1. CAUSE FOR DISQUALIFICATION: Any attempt or suspected attempt to use robotic, automatic, programmed, or otherwise, illicit means to enter the Contest, or any other methods not authorized by these Contest Rules, for example, but not limited to, creating multiple accounts, identities, or registrations, all in the Sponsor’s sole discretion, shall be deemed as tampering and may disqualify you from entering, participating and/or winning a prize.  Entries that contain false or incomplete information are void.  Entries that are late, lost, stolen, illegible, contain false information, are damaged, misdirected, mutilated, garbled or incomplete, altered or otherwise irregular or that do not conform with or satisfy any or all of the conditions of the Contest Rules are void.  Entrants grant Sponsor a non-exclusive license to use all entries for any purpose.  No correspondence will be entered into except with selected entrants.  Proof of transmission (screenshots or captures, etc.) does not constitute proof of entry or receipt of an entry.

 

  1. CONTEST PRIZES: consists of an all-expense paid trip for two to a northern Ontario lodge/resort. These trips will include accommodations, all meals and select nonalcoholic beverages along with boats, motors live bait and guiding services (where available). If the selected lodge does not offer some or any of these amenities they will not apply and may be substituted with other amenities. In the case of a fly-in destination this trip may also include transportation from a predetermined starting point (hub) to the selected lodge/resort and back again. All expense paid does not include costs of travel from the winners starting point to the predetermined hub. All expense paid does not include alcoholic beverages or Ontario fishing license. Prizes are none transferable and must be accepted as awarded and have no cash value.  Prizes or any portion thereof cannot be combined with other discounts, promotions or special offers.  Sponsor reserves the right to substitute an alternate prize of equal or greater value if an advertised prize is unavailable at time of award.

 

  1. ODDS OF WINNING: The odds of winning the Grand Finale draw prizes is dependent  on the number of eligible votes/ballots submitted before the Contest End Date. The more qualified ballots a contestant or voter enters into the virtual random draw increases the odds of winning.

 

  1. SKILL TESTING QUESTION: Winning Contestants and winning Voters will be required, as a condition to winning a Prize, to correctly answer, without assistance of any kind, a skill testing question.

 

  1. WINNER SELECTION AND CONFIRMATION: 5 Winning Contestants will be declared each month starting April 30th at 3pm EST on the fishncanada.com site. Subsequent Winning Contestants will be announced on fishncanada.com site and social media array. Winners are declared based on total votes they receive for the month. Top 5 vote getters will win the monthly prizes. In the event of a tie the tie breaker will be based on the time the winning vote was cast and will bump the loosing Entrant down one position in the standings or in the case of a tie for the fifth spot the loosing Entrant will be knocked out of the top 5 and not be eligible for a prize.  

 

After the final monthly segment and all 25 Winning Contestants have been determined based on votes, all accumulated votes and entries from all segments, excluding the 25 monthly Winning Contestants, will be converted into ballots and will go into a virtual drum from which additional prize winners will be drawn, these additional prize winners are called Selected Winners.  The Sponsor, or an employee, agent or other representative of the Sponsor, will conduct a virtual drum random draw from all eligible entries and select the Grand Finale winners.  The Grand Finale winners or Selected Winners will be deemed winners if they meet all the eligibility criteria set out in these Contest Rules.  If a Grand Finale winner does not meet the eligibility criteria, he/she will be disqualified and will not receive a prize and another entrant will be selected by way of a random virtual drum draw from the remaining eligible entries.  Before being declared an official winner, a Grand Finale winner will be required to: (i) sign and return the Sponsor’s Declaration of Eligibility and Liability/Publicity Release form; and (ii) comply with all other Contest Rules, all in the sole discretion of Sponsor.

The Winning Contestants of the monthly segments and the Selected Winners of the Grand Finale Prize of the GOGG will be notified within one (1) business day of the official declaration of their win via telephone number and/or email address provided at the time of entry into the Contest. In the Sponsor’s sole discretion, up to three attempts will be made within 36 hours following the draw.  A prize winner that does not or cannot respond and accept the Prize within this predetermined time frame will forfeit their win and therefore will not be eligible to receive the prize. The Sponsor’s signed release form must be received by Sponsor no later than 2 days following receipt of the release form. The  Sponsor is not responsible for the failure for any reason whatsoever of a Selected or Winning Contestant  to receive notification or for the Sponsor to receive a response. All winners assume any and all liability for any injury or damage caused, or claimed to be caused, by entering, participating in this promotion or use or redemption of a prize.

  1. DISPUTES REGARDING IDENTITY OF ENTRANT: If the identity of a Selected Entrant is disputed, the entry will be deemed to have been submitted by the Authorized Account Holder (the individual assigned to the e-mail address or, if applicable for entry, social media handle associated with the entry).  Each Selected Entrant may be required to provide proof that he/she is the Authorized Account Holder associated with the selected entry.

 

  1. RELEASE AND INDEMNIFICATION: The winner must sign the Sponsor’s Declaration of Eligibility and Liability/Publicity Release form to: (i) confirm compliance with the Contest Rules; (ii) agree to accept the prize as awarded; (iii) release, discharge and hold harmless the Sponsor, its departments and agencies, parent, related and affiliated companies, subsidiaries, franchisees, advertising and promotional agencies, counsel, marketing partners, and each of their respective directors, officers, employees, shareholders, successors, sponsors, partners, licensees, subsidiaries, agents, artists, advisors, assignees, and all others associated with the administration, development and execution of the Contest (the “Released Parties”) from and against any and all manner of action, cause of action, claim or demand, loss or injury, use or misuse of a prize or any travel related thereto, and the use of the Entry by the Sponsor, suit, debt, covenant, contract, including legal fees and expenses, whatsoever, including but not limited to, claims based on negligence, breach of contract and fundamental breach, failure of any third party contractor or supplier used in connection with any aspect of the Contest to perform or deliver any goods or services, any act of God or any other event beyond the Released Parties’ control, any dissatisfaction of any kind by a winner with any aspect of the Contest or any prize, liability for physical injury, death, or property damage which the entrants, guests, their heirs, successors or assigns have, might have or could have suffered, by reason of or arising out of the entrant’s participation in the Contest and/or in connection with the acceptance and/or exercise by the entrant of the Prize as awarded; and (iv) indemnify the Released Parties against any loss, damage or expense, including legal fees, that any of the Released Parties may suffer or incur as a result of any non-compliance by an entrant with any of the Contest Rules or participation in the Contest and/or in connection with the acceptance and/or exercise by an entrant of a prize and the use of the Entry by Sponsor.

 

  1. THE SPONSOR IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR: (i) incorrect or inaccurate entry information which may affect a person’s ability to participate in the Contest or be awarded a prize, including but not limited to human error, technical malfunctions, lost or delayed entries for any reason, mail failures, omission, or any combination thereof, and entries which fail to fully comply with these Contest Rules; (ii) technical failures of any kind, including, but not limited to malfunctions, interruptions, or disconnections in phone lines or network hardware or software; (iii) lost, incomplete, delayed, mutilated or misdirected entries or Declaration and Release forms; (iv) injury or damage to the entrant’s computer or to any other individual’s computer related to or resulting from participating in, or downloading any material regarding the Contest or accepting a prize; (v) any injury or damage to persons or property which may be caused, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from entrant’s participation in the Contest or receipt or use or misuse of any prize, including any travel related thereto and the use of the Entry by Sponsor; (vi) the security or privacy of information transmitted via computer networks or for breaches of privacy due to interference by third party computer “hackers” or otherwise; or (vii) late, lost, misdirected or unsuccessful efforts to notify a potential winner.

 

  1. OTHER CONDITIONS:  The Sponsor reserves the right to terminate or amend this Contest at any time and in any way, without prior notice.  Without limiting the foregoing, if, for any reason, the Contest is not capable of running as originally planned for any reason, the Sponsor reserves the right to cancel the Contest and conduct a random draw from all previously received eligible entries received by the Contest End Date.

 

  1. PUBLICITY AND ENTRANT INFORMATION: By participating in the Contest, entrant consent to the use of their name, address, postal code, telephone number, social media handles, comments, and image, whether on videotape, photograph or any other means, for the administration of this Contest or any publicity carried out by the Sponsor, without further notice or compensation.

 

 

 

 

  1. LAW: The Contest is void where prohibited by law and is subject to all applicable Canadian federal, provincial, territorial, municipal and local laws. This Contest shall be governed exclusively by the laws of the province of Ontario including all issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Contest Rules, rights and obligations between entrants and the Sponsor, and procedural provisions, without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules.  Any dispute shall be adjudicated by the courts sitting in Oshawa, Ontario.

This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with

              Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn or Google.

             The participants understand that it is providing information solely to the sponsors of the   

             GOGG contest and Fishncanada.com

 

  1. RULE AMENDMENTS: The Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to amend  

             or modify these Contest Rules, or modify, cancel or suspend this Contest, without prior

             notice for any reason whatsoever, including without limitation in the event that any cause

             beyond the reasonable control of the Sponsor corrupts, or threatens to corrupt, the

             security or proper administration of the Contest.

 

             INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY: All intellectual property, including but not limited to

             trademarks, logos, designs, promotional materials, web pages, source codes, images,

             drawings, illustrations, slogans and representations are owned by the Sponsor.  All rights

             are reserved.  Unauthorized copying or use of any copyrighted material or other

             intellectual property without the express written consent of the Sponsor is strictly

             prohibited.  The Sponsor’s marketing or other partners, if any, shall also have access to

             and rights to reproduce, copy or otherwise use any materials generated by this Contest or

             any submissions or materials generated by entrants.

             © Fish’n Canada 2021.  All Rights Reserved.