American star Dustin Johnson, meanwhile, had some struggles during his first-round 71.
Twenty-six Canadians are in the field at the PGA Tour event.
Taylor, who started on hole No. 10, made four birdies in a row to open his back nine at the Hamilton Golf and Country Club.
This year the tournament has moved up in the golf calendar, making it a lead-in event to the U.S. Open and drawing a significantly stronger group of competitors. I played very well. "That definitely adds a little bit more difficulty to it", said Johnson on Wednesday morning. It was so fun to go out there and feel like that. "Sandwiched in between there I qualified for the U.S. Open, so I knew I'd been playing well".
"This isn't just a preparation week. Life's short so, whatever, I'm just going to have some fun", Hughes said, per John Chidley-Hill of The Canadian Press. "With me, it's all about the putter". You have to play out of these fairways to give yourself chances. "He's good enough now where he can got a pretty good beat on the course".
Last but certainly not least among the Canadian contenders after the first round is Mackenzie Hughes.
Nick Taylor of Abbotsford, B.C., led the way in his home country, shooting a six-under 65 at Hamilton Golf & Country Club.
"I think it's a huge advantage. I'm happy with how I played with Pebble Beach next week". I got mine out of the way in the first round.
A total of 26 Canadians will be competing for the national championship.
Play at the tournament was halted at 12:10 p.m. for approximately three minutes as planes from the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum and current RCAF 8 Wing based aircraft from 429, 436 and 437 squadrons flew over the course.
"We all obviously want to be the first one to win this, but we all want each other to do well", said Hadwin, who briefly delayed his post-round news conference so that Hughes could concentrate on teeing off nearby. "Until one of us does that, I think it's going to hold a lot of value for us".