Known Fish Species:Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Pike and panfish
Puzzle Lake – Puzzle Lake Provincial Park
- Located about 30min north of Napanee, ON
- Non-operating park
- Motor boats allowed, but restricted access
- A few cottages on the lake
- Very deep clear water
- One short portage to access the lake
- Free parking at boat launch
- Rentals available near Sydenham
Puzzle Lake is located about 30 minutes north of Napanee near the town of Tamworth, ON.
Take 15 north from Tamworth (main road running north/south through tamworth) to the bridge crossing Gull Creek, you will see a small gravel parking lot on your right side just after you cross the bridge. You can park your car here and use the launch just off of the parking lot. Once you launch do not cross under the bridge, instead head straight across Gull Lake to the portage. This portage is short, less than 200m but there are a few tricky areas on the portage, especially if it has been raining but all in all it is a fairly easy portage. The end of the portage is the begining of Puzzle Lake. Puzzle Lake is a deep clear lake with a few bays with lilly pads and some weeds. The scenery and shoreline is extremely steep with a lot of rock, it makes it quite beautiful, but it also makes it quite hard to find a suitable place for a campsite. The best spots that we saw on this trip were located on the many islands on the lake. This park is non-operating but we managed to find a site with a campfire pit and a makeshift table, the only drawback to this spot was that it looked out onto a few of the cottages that dot the lake. Fishing for bass is decent, as the water is so deep you need to use deep diving baits and if you use plastics, finese drop shot set ups should be used. I’m sure other species of fish exist in the lake but we didn’t catch any.
From puzzle lake there is access to a few other lakes, Loyst Lake and Little Norway Lake. When we spoke to a local he reccommended we did not try to get to Little Norway, he said it was not worth the time and that it was fairly hard to access and instead said we should try Loyst Lake which he mentioned boasts a healthy population of Lake Trout. This is of course all hearsay and so I can not confirm his reports, but the next time I go up that way I will try the short portage into Loyst Lake and see if I can grab some lakers.
If Puzzle Lake had no cottages on its shorelines it would be an absolute paradise. Even with the cottages it is still a great destination that is relatively easy to access and makes for a great spot for amateur canoe trippers.
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