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N.H. Weekly Fishing Report - August 5, 2010

Take Me Fishing!

Note: Fish stocking is over for the season. Click here for past stocking reports.

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North Country

As New Hampshire anglers watch the calendar turn to August, some serious adjustments are made in order to be successful. If you are a trout fisherman, middle to late summer is when your skills and talents are really put to the test. Water temperatures have been at levels that make coldwater fish seem to disappear. One of the greatest challenges to fishing at any time of the year is finding fish and predicting their movements. Preferred habitat now is deep, well-oxygenated, and cool water. Finding all three is rare, so fish will settle for one or two of these refugia. Once these areas have been identified, you may have to employ additional tactics like fishing early in the morning or at dusk. To complicate matters even further, fish like trout and salmon will decrease their energy expenditures when they are under stressful conditions. A brook trout, for example, will be less likely to aggressively rise for food in these warm water months. If you hope to fool one with a delicate, lifelike presentation, you could be doing battle with a fish who may not even want to feed. Good luck.

August is still one of the best months to fish in Northern New Hampshire. They daylight is still quite lengthy and conditions on the water can be very comfortable for fishermen. If the deerflies don't carry you away, you can spend an entire weekend trying to figure out where fish are and, more importantly, where they are not. – Andy Schafermeyer, Regional Fisheries Biologist

Lakes Region/White Mountains

Sorry folks, no report this week but I’ll be back next week. – Don Miller, Regional Fisheries Biologist

Monadnock/Upper Valley

Night sampling has been keeping me busy and away from fishing for the past few weeks, but reports I have received at the office from anglers have been promising. Rainbow trout are still being caught with regularity in Spofford Lake (Chesterfield; some up to 22”), Swanzey Lake (Swanzey), and Silver Lake (Harrisville). I have also heard of some very nice landlocked salmon and lake trout being caught at Nubanusit Lake (Hancock/Nelson). Bass anglers have been having a banner summer in southwestern NH. Reports of nice largemouth have come in from Highland Lake (Stoddard), the Connecticut River (Hinsdale), Warren Lake (Alstead), Crescent Lake (Acworth), and Laurel Lake (Fitzwilliam). For smallmouths, I would try Swanzey Lake (Swanzey), Dublin Lake (Dublin), Stone Pond (Marlborough), and the Connecticut River (Chesterfield/Westmoreland). If the bass aren’t biting in the shallows, try the deeper water off of reefs, deep shorelines, and secondary points. – Gabe Gries, Regional Fisheries Biologist

Southeast NH/Merrimack Valley

While there are many public boat ramps and shoreline access points for saltwater fishing, shoreline fishing opportunities on freshwater can be difficult to find in New Hampshire. Most shorelines are privately owned and access to many lakes and ponds is limited. However, if you look hard enough you can find some excellent fishing spots in southeastern New Hampshire. Swains Lake, in Barrington, can be accessed along France Road. The two small bridges are good places to cast for largemouth bass and yellow perch. The Cocheco River is known for its brown trout. It can be accessed, at a number of points, by an unpaved road that runs along the left side of the river looking downstream from the Watson Road Dam in Rochester. The Cocheco River is one of three rivers in southeastern New Hampshire that have extended catch and release seasons for trout. The other two are the Lamprey River, downstream of the Wiswall Dam to the first Railroad trestle downstream of Packers Falls, and the Isinglass River, from the Route 125 bridge to its confluence with the Cocheco River. More warm water fishing (for bass, pickerel, and sunfish) can be found on the section of the Isinglass River that parallels Route 126 and eventually crosses under Route 202 in Barrington.

The black crappie in the lower Lamprey River are best approached through the ice, or by canoe, but there is shoreline access along the back side of a graveyard in Newmarket, near the confluence with the Piscassic River. If you would prefer a little peace and quiet, Northwood Meadows State Park contains a small pond with bass fishing and trout in season. Although it is not technically a shoreline access site, the UNH Rec Center on Mendums Pond, off of Hall Road in Barrington, has very reasonable rates for canoe/kayak rentals, which provide access to a smallmouth bass population that gets relatively little fishing pressure. I could go on, but the best way to find new shoreline fishing opportunities is to go for a drive. With respect for private property and careful attention to "no trespassing" signs, check all the places where a road crosses a river or runs along the shoreline of a lake or pond. With patience you might stumble onto a new fishing spot that is too good to share. – Matt Carpenter, Regional Fisheries Biologist

Seacoast Area

Well, of course the day that I write there are bluefish is the day they disappear. One of the headboat companies reported hooking into a school of them last week, but we have not heard a thing of them since. Striper fishing hasn’t been too bad, still most of the catching has been out in the ocean, not much going on in the rivers. One thing of note on the groundfishing front this week, a lot of white hake (a member of the cod family) was brought in over the weekend. The time is approaching again with incoming tide happening at dawn and dusk, check those tide tables and get out fishing, don’t let the summer disappear without visiting the coast! – Rebecca Heuss, Marine Biologist

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