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Ontario Fishing Tackle Rules, Regulations and Laws

This looks like a good place to fish...
So I was watching a video about fishing and the American in the video was using corn as bait and mentioned that in some states they are not allowed to bait fish with corn.

So it got me wondering if corn was allowed in Ontario or not... and what other fishing rules does Ontario have that I might not be aware of since I usually bowfish for carp instead of reel fishing?

Thus I decided to look up a lot of Ontario's fishing regulations, having previously only seriously read the sections on bowfishing for carp.

So for example I didn't know there was only two zones in Ontario where fishing with artificial flies was allowed, zones 6 (near Thunderbay) and 10 (near Sudbury).

Learn more about Artificial Fly Zones
And within those 2 zones, only 3 rivers are legally allowed for fly fishing. Wow.

So for most of Ontario, fly fishing is technically illegal. Only those 3 rivers in 2 specific zones allow it.

In some respects that must be like belonging to a club. You go fishing up north and see the same people you saw last year, like everyone is in the same club.

For those who don't know, Artificial Fly Fishing (commonly called just "fly fishing") is defined as:
  • a lightweight lure dressed with silk, tinsel, wool, fur or feathers
  • can have a single or multi-pointed hook
  • includes wet flies, dry flies and streamer flies
  • does not include an artificial lure or organic bait
The "fly" is a tiny imitation of a specific kind of insect, designed to lure a specific kind of fish which favours eating those insects. Thus "artificial flies" are designed to look like a real fly and trick the fish into biting.

So all these rules, just for fly fishing.

I got all excited learning more about fly fishing, and then really disappointed I could only do it legally near Thunderbay and Sudbury.


I guess if I want to fish closer to home I will have to find other kinds of fish and a different method closer to home.

So for example, some regions of Ontario allow bowfishing and spearfishing. They are likewise heavily regulated. So for the example of spearfishing, they can only be used for spearfishing carp or white suckers, only during certain times of the year, and only certain zones.

So here is the thing about fishing in Ontario...

There are many different rules and laws and they vary across Ontario.
  • They can vary by zone.
  • They can vary by lake.
  • They can vary by river.
  • They can also vary by the time of year.
 Thus you might be in the right zone, the right lake or river, but still get the season wrong. So you need to research where and when you are allowed to fish, not just what kind of tackle you can use because often certain types of tackle can only be used during a certain season.

eg. Carp season.

Also I should note from personal experience with carpfishing, never go at the end of a season. Early or mid season is best. Fishing at the end of the season can often mean the fish are no longer spawning and there aren't any carp to be found.

And another thing to note is that the rules and regulations are not guidelines. They are laws. So sucks to be you if you get caught doing something illegal in the wrong lake, the wrong river, the wrong zone, and/or during the wrong time of year.

Fishing Laws for Hooks and Lines

The following law applies all across Ontario and has only two exceptions:
  • you can attach up to 4 hooks to your fishing line.
  • you can use only 1 line.
The two exceptions:

1. You can use 2 lines when fishing from a boat in the Great Lakes, however exceptions and restrictions apply.

2. You can use 2 lines when ice fishing in most waters (again, there are exceptions) as long as:
  • you stay within 60 metres at all times of any line or tip-up.
  • you have a clear and unobstructed view of both your lines at all times.
Fishing Laws for Lead Sinkers / Jigs

It is against the law to use lead fishing sinkers or jigs in Canada’s national parks and wildlife areas. When birds and other wildlife swallow them, they can get lead poisoning.

So... why bother even buying them then? Just get sinkers and jigs that are made from nickle or some other suitable material.

There are various other fishing laws, but in relation to fishing tackle we have covered the basics. Here are a few definitions in case you were wondering:

  • a single-pointed or multiple-pointed hook on the same shaft
  • lures can have multiple hooks — each hook on a lure counts toward your 4-hook limit
  • snaggers and spring gaffs are not hooks
Barbless hook
  • a hook made without a barb
  • a hook with its barb completely removed
  • a hook with its barb flattened against the shaft of the hook
Organic bait
  • any part of a plant or animal
  • common baits like worms and minnows
  • animals like frogs, crayfish, crickets, hellgrammites, etc.
Artificial lures
  • spoons
  • plugs
  • jigs
  • artificial flies






Antler, a good place to try venison in Toronto

Antler Kitchen & Bar
4.8 Star Rating on Google
4.5 Star Rating on Yelp (although to be fair, a lot of Yelp reviews are fake)

1454 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1Y6


Reservations by Phone
(647) 345-8300

Sunday 11a.m.–2:30p.m., 5–10p.m.
Monday Closed
Tuesday 5–11p.m.
Wednesday 5–11p.m.
Thursday 5–11p.m.
Friday 5p.m.–12a.m.
Saturday 11a.m.–2:30p.m., 5p.m.–12a.m.

"Antler" is a local Toronto restaurant and bar which serves up a variety of options on its menu, including vegan and vegetarian dishes, as well as locally sourced ethical meat such as beef and venison. Venison, for those who don't know, is deer meat.

Venison is tastier than beef, but also more nutritious. Deer thrive in the forest, which also means that consuming venison has a significantly lower carbon footprint than conventional cattle livestock.

As such if a person is curious about trying venison, wants a healthier / more ethical alternative to beef, then venison is certainly an option. Also since Antler does source a variety of other ethically grown meats, it is also a good place to try those too.

Myself I have had both venison and moose meat. Both are very tasty, and I would definitely eat them again.

Antler has both a brunch and a dinner menu with a variety of options on both, and I am currently thinking of taking my wife there as a celebration for her graduating from law school. (We might end up going somewhere else, as it will likely come down to my wife's decision. It is her graduation after all, not mine. But maybe I can go to Antler next year for my birthday or some other event.)

Might even take our son with us. He needs to be trying new foods. (He will be be 10 months old a week from now.)

Antler Brunch Menu

Antler Dinner Menu

While browsing the dinner menu I also noted the wild boar. Ooooooo! Something I haven't had before, sounds like something to try.


Antler recently got a lot of media attention because of vegans protesting outside of the restaurant. One of the owners, who doubles as a chef/butcher, got frustrated with the vegans constantly and repeatedly protesting outside his restaurant and decided to butcher a leg of deer in the restaurant window for the vegans to watch - you know, to spite them and to send the message that he and his business partner are not about to change their ways.

The vegans, who were effectively trying to extort the business, recorded the butchering and it went viral online and in the news media. And it backfired on them. "Antler" is now more popular than ever and as mentioned above, now requires reservations.

It is so popular I hope they end up opening a second restaurant. The vegans will be truly upset if it comes to that.

Personal Note - I have nothing personal against vegans myself, but I do wish they would mind their own business when it came to promoting their beliefs and not be all Hitler (Hitler was a vegetarian) on trying to force their beliefs on to others. In fact, I have a personal rule that every time a vegan tries to force their beliefs unto me I go out and eat a rabbit, a duck or some other cute tasty animal.

So here is the video, as posted on WatchMojo (which tells you how viral the clip became).

Later the owner/chef/butcher Michel Hunter became internet famous and has since done a number of interviews. Like the following interview with Joe Rogan, who is pro-hunting.

Seeing as I am also trying to build Project Gridless as a YouTube channel, I am also going to reach out shortly to see if we can organize a video interview. So check back in a few weeks and we shall see if I managed to score an interview with Michel, who is really busy these days thanks to all the extra publicity.


So I did get a response, but they are no longer doing interviews and apparently waiting for the fuss to die down.

So here is my thought... wait a few months, contact them then and see if an interview can still be arranged - and perhaps focus on a specific topic such as "The Proper Way to Butcher a Deer" or some similar useful topic.

How to Smoke and Preserve Meat Off the Grid

One of the things I love about frontier / settler knowledge is that the knowledge and skills can still be used today for a variety of useful things.

One such example, is how to smoke and preserve meat using only sticks, firewood, and a blanket. The video below, courtesy of the James Townsend & Son YouTube channel (aka Townsends) shows a very easy to master system for smoking and preserving meat.

Afterwards the dried/smoked meat can be stored in a dry place for weeks or even a month and still be good to eat. It can also be added to soup, stews, and other foods.

This also ends up being an excellent survival method of preserving food when living in the wilderness for months at a time.

Toronto Survivalists and Off Gridders wanted for YouTube Video Series

Looking for Toronto-area survivalists and off gridders to interview for my YouTube channel Project Gridless. Please email cardiotrek@gmail.com to take part.

Also looking to interview people who are willing to talk about the following topics on video:

  • Archery Skills or Bowmaking
  • Building Green Homes
  • Camping Tips
  • Carpentry and Woodworking
  • Falconry
  • Farming and Gardening
  • Fishing
  • Foraging for Food
  • Hunting and Bowhunting
  • Outdoor DIY Projects
  • Sailing and Boatmaking
  • Solar Panels and Wind Turbines
  • Survival Methods of How to Start a Fire
  • Sustainable Architecture
  • Tips on Buying Off Grid Land
  • Trapping
  • Veganism

So if you are skilled / knowledgeable in one of these areas, I would like to interview you as part of our series of videos. In the meantime I am contacting friends and colleagues with such interests to get their help to make these videos happen. Time to share the knowledge.

Know a friend who might be able to help out making these videos? Ask them if they are interested and get them to contact cardiotrek@gmail.com.

Have a nice day!

Two Ways you can Start a Fire using a Rasp

One of the most basic and important survival skills is how to start a fire.

One of the methods I especially like is using a rasp, which, I admit requires you to actually have a rasp handy... but has the added advantage that you can make a fire even in the rain and using wood that is partially wet (although not waterlogged wood, that would be well nigh impossible).

Note - See the second video below for the method that allows you to start a fire using damp wood. The first video does not show that.

Plus rasps are an useful tool for bowmaking, so another bonus.

Method #1 to Start a Fire

The video below demonstrates one way to use a rasp to start a fire - with help from a rock. And despite a bit of clumsiness on his part, he does manage to start a fire. Proof that anyone can do it.

Method #2 to Start a Fire

The second video below demonstrates how to turn an old rasp into an useful knife, which likewise can be used as both a knife and as a rasp - and for making fire, using a slightly different method of producing a spark. So triple the usage. The video below is from "Outdoor Boys".

Useful and Cool Knots for Survivalists and DIYers

I learned knot-making back in Cub Scouts when I was a kid. Roughly 30 years ago.

Since then I have never really had a problem with making my own knots, untying knots, and have frequently taught other people how to do two of my favourite knots:

  • The Reef Knot
  • The Surgeon's Knot*

* Which if you know anything about knots, the Surgeon's Knot is basically just a modified version of the Reef Knot - although it should be noted that there are different variations of the Surgeon's Knot. The version which was taught to me was one used by two surgeons who were archery students of mine, so I trust that their version is an "Authentic Surgeon's Knot" even though I have seen other variations of how to do a Surgeon's Knot. All this really shows is how much I like the Reef Knot.

Still, I do enjoy learning new types of knots... especially those knots which are especially useful and easy to remember. And they are handy for a variety of purposes, whether it be DIY projects, survivalism, and as an educational tool for both adults and children. You can be certain I will be teaching my son knot-making as he gets older.

Fortunately I am not alone in this belief. Luke from Outdoor Boys (the YouTube channel) also shares my interest in knot-making and in passing on his knowledge. So here are two of his videos on the topic:

Restoring a Ben Pearson Colt 707

Found this YouTube video today. Ended up subscribing to the channel "3D Archery".

The video is a good example of how to restore and "beautify" an old bow. I was looking for videos about repairing bows which had delaminated, but this video was still enjoyable.

I used to own 4 Ben Pearson bows (sold 1 recently so I am down to three Ben Pearson bows). As a fan of the company it is good to see I am not alone in liking Ben Pearson bows.

Hiking and Exploring Hilton Falls

Hiking and exploring a local waterfalls is a good way to get exercise. Hilton Falls, near Milton Ontario, is one of my favourites. My wife and I have gone there multiple times. The videos below are from 4 years ago when I went a bit "Hog Wild" making videos about Hilton Falls.

Hiking and exploring waterfalls makes for a good way to get exercise and have some fun doing it.

These videos are part of my "Waterfalls of Ontario" playlist on my YouTube channel Project Gridless.

I have other waterfalls videos too that I need to add to my YouTube channel sometime. On my To Do List.

Crossbow Bowstrings and How to Replace Them


Hi there!

I have a vintage " Barnett wildcat C5 crossbow " the string's broken needs being replaced , can you fix it ?

If okay, please let Me know. (I also will need direction and working hours.)

Thank You


Hello Kamal!

I don't make new bowstrings, but I know who does.

Ballistic Bowstrings is a company just north of Toronto near Bradford.


Below: Barnett Wildcat C5 Crossbow


Hi Charles ,

Thanks for reply, regarding my request.

Because I don't have technical information, is it possible for you to order the right string for me and I bring my crossbow to you to get fixed?

In case you accept, you order for me and I can e-transfer the cost in advance to you (if I know how much I need to send). If this doesn't work, can you lead me to any place where I can fix my crossbow please?



Hey Kamal!

So I have taken the liberty of looking up the technical specs for a Barnett Wildcat C5 for you.

I have zero experience ordering crossbow strings from manufacturers. I usually make my own crossbow strings or buy bowstrings that are premade. The amount of effort required to make them is not worth my time.

Barnett Wildcat C5 Crossbow Specs and Technical Info

  • Aluminum Riser
  • CNC Machined 7/8" Picatinny Rail
  • Gas Assist Molded Composite Stock
  • CROSSWIRE String and Cable System
  • High Definition Camo Finish
  • 26" Axle to Axle
  • Manufacturer, Barnett
  • Cocking Device, Crank Optional
  • Velocity, Up to 320 fps
  • Foot Pounds of Energy, 91
  • Power Stroke, 12.25"
  • Mass Weight, 8 lbs
  • Draw Weight, 150 lbs
  • Length, 36"
  • Width, 28"

If you only need the bowstring replaced you can just order it online from various sources:

Possible Sources



If it is the cables which are damaged, then you should possibly contact Barnett directly. You can do so at http://www.barnettcrossbows.com


I don't fix crossbows. I do make my own crossbows for fun, but I typically only repair compound bows. Or as I like to call it, "compound bow surgery".


Follow Up Thank You

Hi Dear Charles,

Thanks for reply, I fixed the crossbow. Of course it was because of your helpful information and leading me to company called "Ballistic Bowstrings". They're professional (but retired) couple doing work at home.
They charged me 150 bucks for material and labor and it is good now. Again I appreciate your help and advice. God bless you and thanks again.

Kind Regards

Luke at the Outdoor Boys YouTube channel is a Marketing Genius

Okay so "Outdoor Boys" is a YouTube channel created by Luke (last name unknown) and frequently featuring his sons and his wife. He does a variety of videos, everything from restoring old axes, making a hunting spear, and other topics Off Gridders like myself would enjoy - often with his kids featuring in the video, which as a father myself, I can appreciate.

The Outdoor Boys video channel currently has over 84,000 subscribers, over 13.5 million views so far, and only 77 videos posted during the last 3 years. So he is only posting roughly 1 video every 2 weeks, and yet clearly knows how to market it.

Having cute kids helps I think.

The one video he made toy swords and shields for two of his boys, and I took one look at that video and said "Yup, that is on the To Do List..."

In the following video posted back in February Luke shows how to turn an old farriers rasp into a knife - a knife that doubles as a rasp and is very useful for starting a fire. So definitely a good video for survivalists to watch. Also good for anyone who likes to recycle things or DIY projects... and its Educational! So woot!

At the end of the video he talks about having a contest for subscribers (it is now April 9th and the contest has been over and done with for over a month), but the manner of the contest is what got me thinking.

He had 4 rules for people to qualify for the contest / draw:

  1. People have to subscribe to his YouTube Channel.
  2. Leave a comment on the video or any of his other videos.
  3. People have to share the video to a social media platform such as Facebook, Twitter, etc.
  4. People had to accomplish the above three before March 3rd 2018 to qualify. (Again, obviously I am too late for this contest. I only FOUND this YouTube Channel yesterday and have been binge watching it.)

And the prize? A $70 USD DeWalt Angle Grinder.

So why is this marketing genius?

Well, first, I should make clear that he probably didn't come up with this method himself. He probably saw someone else doing it and realized that it is a great way to get lots of "mostly free advertising". I say mostly free because obviously he still has to pay for the $70 Angle Grinder...

But consider this, if 10 people follow the instructions to qualify, he gets the following:

  1. 10 new subscribers, which boosts his visibility on YouTube algorithms.
  2. 10 comments on his videos, which also boosts his visibility on YouTube algorithms.
  3. 10 "advertising posts" on other people's social media platforms, and a variety of them, which boosts his visibility on both Google, YouTube, and directly brings in extra viewers.

And the limited time span ensures he can announce the winner a week later, and other people who view it later (like I did) are more likely to subscribe to his channel both for the great content, but also for the off-chance of being included in a future contest for some other item of value.

Meanwhile someone like myself, who has a background in real estate marketing, looks at this video and thinks: "Wow. That is genius."

And here is the math as to why it is genius.

Yes, it costs him $70 USD + shipping for the contest (although if he orders via Amazon he can probably get free shipping). But the cost of getting 1 person to subscribe, comment and post a free advert on social media has a roughly $30 USD value. I know this because, like I mentioned before, I used to work in marketing.

So if just 3 people follow the instructions fully Luke just got $90 USD worth of advertising for $70.

If 10 people follow the instructions, he just got $300 USD worth of advertising value for $70.

And if more people follow the instructions, well then clearly he is getting his monies worth out of these contests.

Did Luke come up with that method of advertising? Probably not. I have seen similar contests on other YouTube Channels, although usually people just have a policy of Subscribe OR Like OR Comment OR Share... requiring three or four of those kind of deters people from doing all of them, but doing it this way gets the best value.

Now you might think:

Well, wouldn't this be cheaper if he offered a smaller prize, like a pocket knife or something that only costs $10?

Well, yes, but the psychology of it is that people are more likely to follow the more complex instructions of doing all 3 tasks if the prize is actually a lot bigger and more valuable. Subscribes, comments and likes only have a small value to the marketeer. What they really want is the free advertising on the social media platforms and other internet websites (kind of what I am doing right now, except I am doing this for free because I find marketing fascinating).

So imagine if you did a contest for a $10 knife or whatever, and maybe only 2 people actually follow the instructions. Or just one. So that would be a $30 to $60 value for the $10 cost. So a $3 to $6 per dollar expended value.

But if you go for a bigger ticket item, like a tool that is worth $50 you might get 10 or 20 subscribers. Thus you get $300 to $600 value for $50. So that is a $6 to $12 per dollar expended value.

There are ways he could improve upon this however.

1. He could mention the contest over multiple videos to get more bang per dollar out of a single contest. So for example if he is releasing videos on May 1st, May 15th and May 29th he could mention the contest at the end of the videos 3 times, and if it is a nice big ticket prize he will get 3 times as many people signing up. (In theory. In actual practice results may vary, sometimes due to the time of year, the type of prize being given away, and so forth.)

More videos mentioning the contest, more people following the instructions, more value per dollar.

2. He can make the prize himself. So for example when he made the swords/shields for his boys, he could have made an extra set as a contest prize. This cuts down on the financial cost of the prize and only adds the physical time and materials to make the item.

3. Sometimes instead of a plain contest he could make something that is also for sale.

eg. Years ago I bought some antler for carving archery thumb rings, and thanks to the manner I cut them I had enough antler to make 6 rings. I only need 1 for myself obviously, so the other 5 I could sell or use for contests to promote my YouTube Channel.

Thumb Rings on Amazon sell for $10 for a cheap leather one or $32 for a brass one. Nobody on Amazon sells antler thumb rings however, so as exotic materials go it should be worth even more.

4. The prize item could be donated by a company seeking advertising. So for example DeWalt very likely gave that angle grinder for free as a contest item. For Luke this means zero overhead for the cost of prizes and lots of value since it only takes the time to make that aspect of the video.

So wait... how does Luke make money by making these videos?

1. Makers of original content can make money off advertising, typically played before the start of the video by YouTube. Every time an advert is aired before a video, Luke gets paid a share of whatever the company is paying for the advertising.

2. Companies looking for product placement / reviews / etc will often contact popular YouTube video producers with free stuff and offering $$$. The real trick however is to become popular in the first place.

3. If the producer also has a product or service that they can sell, that is an extra way for them to be adding income.

So what about Project Gridless's YouTube Channel?

Well it is at https://www.youtube.com/user/ProjectGridless/ and we have a whopping 40 subscribers and I very rarely even post videos. So far... 20 videos, often on vastly different topics. Most of what is on there is Playlists of videos which were posted by other people. So 40 subscribers for zero videos is actually pretty good in my opinion.

One of these days I should start posting actual videos...

One video per week, or one every two weeks. I could interview people who own off grid homes, do videos about bowmaking or woodworking, go foraging in the woods... any number of topics related to the off grid lifestyle.

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