Lake Ontario

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Lake Ontario is the 14th largest lake in the world. Although it is the smallest of the Great Lakes in surface area (193 miles by 53 miles), it ranks fourth among the Great Lakes in maximum depth. Lake Ontario is similar to Lake Erie in length and breadth, yet with its greater average depth (approximately 283 feet), Lake Ontario holds almost four times the volume of water (393 cubic miles). The drainage basin covers parts of Ontario and New York State. A few large urban areas, including Ontario's capital city (Toronto), are located on the Canadian shoreline. The U.S. shore is less urbanized and is not intensively farmed. The lake's main fish species include chinook salmon, coho salmon, rainbow trout, brown trout, lake trout, northern pike, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, walleye and carp.

     Lake Ontario is famous for it's fantastic salmon fishery. Among the many species present, the chinook or pacific salmon are the kings in these waters, many topping the scales at well over 30 pounds. With fish nearing the 40 pound mark caught annually. Other less predominant salmon species are the coho salmon, pink salmon and atlantic salmon.

In spring, most salmon congregate off shore feeding heavily on spawning smelt and alewifes. Trolling a variety of spoons using downriggers is the technique of choice for most anglers. The spoons are trolled above and below marked fish usually within 1 mile of the shore. Some of the best spoons are nasty boys, williams, evil eyes and northern kings. Pier fishing can also produce some nice fish for shore anglers. Casting spoons, such as cleos and pixies on windy days at dusk and dawn can be hot.

In summer, salmon move out into deeper water off shore. Once again relating to schools of baitfish. Trolling spoons using downriggers near marked baitfish schools is always a good bet.

In fall, salmon once again move inshore, this time to spawn, with large numbers of them congregating at river mouths. Many boats can be seen trolling these areas with spoons and plugs. Shore anglers cast spoons and plugs or bottom fish with marshmellows and spawn along piers lining river mouths.

     Many species of trout inhabit Lake Ontario, although none is more sought after than the rainbow trout or steelhead. Known for it's brilliant leaps when hooked, anglers can enjoy catching world class fish. The average Lake Ontario, rainbow weights 6-8 pounds, although trophy steelhead weighting over 20 pounds are not uncommon. Open water fish are caught using the same techniques as those used for salmon, with fish moving inshore in the spring and fall, and deeper during the summer months.

     River mouths are the prime targets for the shore angler during spring and fall. Casting spoons or spinners at river mouths or angling with spawn, either on bottom or under a float are proven tactics this time of year. Steelhead spawn in the spring, and many anglers do a yearly pilgrimage to one of the many rivers draining into Lake Ontario. Crowding well known rivers, anglers float fish for migratory trout, with spawn, flies and worms.

Statistics & Figures:

LENGTH: 193 miles / 311 km.
BREADTH: 53 miles / 85 km.
AVERAGE DEPTH: 283 ft. / 86 m
MAXIMUM DEPTH: 802 ft. / 244 m.
VOLUME: 393 cubic miles / 1,640 cubic km.
WATER SURFACE AREA: 7,340 sq. miles / 18,960 sq. km.
DRAINAGE BASIN AREA: 24,720 sq. miles / 64,030 sq. km.
(including islands):
712 miles / 1,146 km.
ELEVATION: 243 ft. / 74 m.
OUTLET: St. Lawrence River to the Atlantic Ocean

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Lake Ontario NEWS!

Ottawa Citizen

Body found inside vehicle in Lake Ontario, Amherstview
It started with a vehicle travelling at a high speed and ended with a body being recovered from Lake Ontario… It happened on County Road 6 and Highway 33 in Amherstview… Authorities say the car sailed over the guardrail — and right into the lake.
Police divers to search car that went into Lake Ontario near KingstonOttawa Citizen
SIU called to investigate car in Lake OntarioQuinte News
Body recovered from lakeThe Kingston Whig-Standard

all 9 news articles »

The Kingston Whig-Standard

Vehicle pulled from Lake Ontario, SIU investigation continues
The Kingston Whig-Standard
A GoFundMe page has been started for the family of a deceased man located in a SUV that was driven into Lake Ontario in Amherstview on Friday. In its first day on the site, the fundraiser, simply called "The Dixon Family," raised more than $5,100. The ...
Vehicle involved in fatal incident removed from Lake Ontario, AhmerstviewCKWS

all 2 news articles »

Teen angler lands huge Lake Ontario catfish on a leftover hotdog
Nelson, 18, landed a 33-inch catfish using a piece of a leftover hotdog as bait on Three Mile Bay. He released the fish to fight another day after it was photographed and measured. SEND US YOUR BIG FISH PHOTOS. Send your fish photographs to outdoors ...

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Lake Ontario homeowner backs commission's water level plan (Your letters)
There are usually two sides to every viewpoint, and Richard Henry has one side on the International Joint Commission's Plan 2014 and I view it different. I live and own property on Lake Ontario in the Chaumont Bay area and I have lived there since 1977.

Niagara Gazette

Fish Forecast: Shark Tank claims 32nd Lake Ontario Pro-Am Salmon team title
Niagara Gazette
In the 32nd annual Lake Ontario Pro-Am Salmon Team Tournament held May 20 to 22 out of Wilson and Olcott, it was the Shark Tank team led by Capt. Greg Gehrig of Oswego leading the way with an impressive score of 599 points in the Classic Division and ...
Fishing Line by Will Elliott (May 24)Buffalo News

all 76 news articles »


Car driven into lake in south Mississauga, driver pronounced dead in hospital
A car ended up in Lake Ontario Sunday evening and the male driver was pronounced dead in hospital. Peel Regional Police, Peel Region Paramedics and Mississauga firefighters responded to the incident at Lakefront Promenade Park around 9:45 p.m..

and more »
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