The BIG FISH DERBY: HALIBURTON HIGHLANDS is a FUN, catch-measure-photograph-release competition in support of our community fishery program.

We ask that all participants do their best to release fish in the best possible health and in a timely manner after catching to help preserve the fishing experience for others. A portion of each registration will be donated to support fish stocking programs of the Haliburton Highlands Outdoors Association (HHOA).




Among many projects, the HHOA operates a not for profit community fishery program. Each year, the HHOA stocks area lakes, in partnership with the Ministry of Natural Resources, with an average 50,000 fingerlings. This program helps to ensure a healthy fish population throughout the area.

For more information, please check their website: www.hhoa.on.ca





No luck catching the big fish? We will be awarding 20 random draws for some great gifts including:


  • Fishing equipment packs
  • Guided fishing trips
  • Overnight stays
  • Golf and other great sponsor prizes.
  • Gift certificates
  • Cash prizes


Monthly award winners will be announced shortly after the close of each month. Random Draw and Grand Prize winners will be announced in early October.


Season (July 1 – September 30) $45
One Month $25
Weekend (3 day) $15
Weekend (3 day) $15
Season (July 1 – September 30) $75
One Month $45
Weekend (3 day) $25


Once you register and create your profile, you can upload your catch (through our website). Participants can register a maximum number of fish (the total in all categories) as follows:

Season (July 1 – September 30) 40 fish
One Month 20 fish
Weekend (3 day) 10 fish
Season (July 1 – September 30) 40 fish
One month 20 fish
Weekend (3 day) 10 fish

NOTE: A ballot will be entered for every fish you catch/enter to the maximum number you are allowed in your registration.


  1. Register and complete your profile on our website.
  2. Once you catch a fish you want to enter, simply take a picture (see rules on how to take a photo of your catch) and load it up to our site. The Big Fish Derby will award an overall prize to the longest fish in each category at the conclusion of the event.
  3. The more fish you enter, the more chances you have to win one of the top or secondary prizes. Good luck!



  • The derby is open to fish caught in any lake in the Haliburton Highlands where fishing is permitted and the species caught is “in season”. Click here to see a map of Haliburton county.



Both live bait (that is legal to use) and artificial baits can be used. All fish must be caught by rod and reel – no netting of fish allowed.



  • All visitors and resident to/of the Haliburton Highlands that pay the appropriate registration fee AND are legally licensed to fish can participate in the Derby.
  • All anglers must have a valid Ontario Fishing license to participate in this event. A Derby fee in NOT a substitute for a fishing license.
  • Participation is open to all anglers 18 years old or older. Anglers younger than 18 years old may participate as part of a Family registration.



The Big Fish Derby is a catch, photograph and release event. In order for us to determine the eligibility of each fish entered, it is critical that you supply a clear photograph of the entire fish. Photos that do not adhere to derby requirements may be disqualified.


IMPORTANT: Rules Regarding taking & submitting your fish photos

To be eligible to win, a clear photograph of your fish must be submitted (through our web site) to your account profile. The photograph must:

  1. Clearly show the overall length of the fish from head (facing left) to tail (facing right) with a measuring tape clearly showing this length in inches. Any picture with the head or tail “cropped out” will not qualify.
  2. Show the Fish’s length – is measured in inches and increments of inches down to 1/4 of an inch. A fish’s official, “scorable” length shall be determined from the forward-most point of the fish to the farthest-reaching portion of its tail.
  3. Skipping, or otherwise failing to follow any of the preceding steps will void a catch. Only properly logged catches will be eligible entries in the derby.
  4. Submitted fish of the same length must display distinctive differences in appearance or be subject to disqualification by the derby judges.
  5. The Derby Director will have final authority to review all submissions and certify winners.



Safety is of utmost importance and must be observed by all participants. Each participant is required to comply with boating regulations (if applicable).



While it is a competition, it is also a fun event dedicated to improving fishing in the region. As such, participants should not only show sportsmanship but also respect the fishery and where they are fishing.



The Big Fish Derby: Haliburton Highlands and its partners, reserve the right to use any submitted photos/images for event promotions, future tournaments, productions, promotions, articles, news releases.



Anglers assume all responsibility for their own safety. Neither THE BIG FISH DERBY: HALIBURTON HIGHLANDS, nor their sponsors or charities will be held responsible for any damages or injuries (personal or property).



In the event of a tie, the entry logged in the earliest will be declared the winner. The judges will be responsible to review all photos to verify qualification and determine place winners. The Derby Director will have final authority to review all submissions and certify winners.



Rules may change or be edited at the discretion of the Tournament Director at any time prior to the tournament date. Decisions of the Derby Director are final in all matters and are not subject to appeal.