There’s never been a better time for spring fishing in New Hampshire, so grab your favorite rod and reel and hit the water! Here are the places you won’t want to miss.
Granite State anglers also have their pick of the action in spring, with ice-fishing topping the bill in March and then open-water action taking over in mid-April. In May, fishermen with a hankering for some saltwater fun can head for New Hampshire’s small but productive coast where big stripers and some bluefish may be found as spring turns to summer.
For maximum opportunities for a wide variety of species it’s impossible to top “Winnie” in March. Ice-fishing is likely to be the order of the day through most of the month, but fishermen targeting end-of-winter panfish will have no trouble reeling in a bucket full of yellow perch and bluegills. Finding fish will be no problem this month: simply head for the nearest cove and set up alongside the hundreds of other anglers who have spent the winter making bragging-sized catches. Local bait shops will be happy to supply visiting anglers with a selection of gear, and most towns along the shore are equipped to accommodate the needs of weekend anglers.
White Mountain National Forest Trout Streams
Come spring the focus is on trout, and New Hampshire’s White Mountains are the place to be for pan-sized native brookies, most of which have never seen the business end of a hook. Travel the back roads and trails armed with lightweight fly-fishing gear or a light-action trout rod and work the culverts and bridge pools on both sides of the road. Many small streams are difficult to find once the leaves begin to form on roadside saplings, so keep an eye out for crystal-clear pools where aggressive, native brookies abound. Small nymphs, garden worms and colorful wet flies will fool these eager fish every time.
New Hampshire’s coastline from Portsmouth to the Hampton beaches offer excellent surf and offshore fishing for hungry stripers that will stick around all summer and well into fall. Plan to fish early and late in the day or stay out all night and wait for schools of big stripers to work the surf and offshore ledges. Thirty- and 40-inch fish are not unusual off New Hampshire’s short but productive coast. Hook up with local charter captains to reach the most productive offshore waters.
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