If you could only wet a line for one species of fish in your home province or territory, what would it be? That’s the question we asked ourselves at Outdoor Canada when selecting our 2019 Canadian fishing hot spots. For more bucket-list species and hot spots, see our complete list.
QUEBEC: BROOK TROUT
Brook trout in Quebec
Why this is one of Canada’s must-have fishing experiences
Speckled with yellow and red spots, sometimes surrounded by a purple or blue halo, the olive skin of a brook trout looks as if it could have been designed and painted by an abstract artist. It’s certainly not hard to understand why many anglers consider Salvelinus fontinalis to be the most beautiful fish in Canada.
Of course, brook trout are also popular because they such good fighters, often leaping out of the water in an acrobatic show of strength. And perhaps nowhere in Canada are they more plentiful than in the cold lakes and rivers of La Belle Province. While six- to eight-pound trophies are mostly caught in the big waters of Quebec’s far north, scrappy two- to five-pounders can be found in many of the province’s more than 500,000 lakes and 4,500 rivers. Most of the brookies are native to Quebec, with wildlife management practices working well to promote the growth and sustainability of the stocks.
Also known as speckled trout, or truite mouchetée in French, brook trout are actually a member of the char family. And while they’re mostly prized for their beauty and fighting ability, they’re also great table fare. Perhaps best of all for anglers, though, they’re not terribly fussy, making them great sport to catch.
WHEN TO GO: May to July
HOT TACTIC: Target woody structure in the shallows at ice-out