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Don Miller: (603) 744-5470
Scott Decker: (603) 271-2501
Jane Vachon: (603) 271-3211
April 23, 2007

N.H.'s Trout and Fly-fishing-only Ponds Open April 28

CONCORD, N.H. -- Fishing in New Hampshire's designated trout ponds and fly-fishing-only ponds opens this year on April 28 (the fourth Saturday in April), 2007, offering anglers the chance to experience exciting fishing in some of the Granite State's most scenic surroundings. These ponds are managed specifically for trout, and fishing is allowed from opening day through October 15.

"Thanks to late season snowstorms and colder than normal temperatures, ponds north of the Lakes Region may still have some ice-cover to greet anglers on opening day," said Fish and Game Fisheries Biologist Don Miller. "That's okay, because fishing around ice-edges is usually very productive, as trout seem to be energized when the ice sheet finally recedes. Fish and Game staff are actively stocking many waters now, generally from south to north. Several ponds received late fall stockings of surplus brood fish, many in excess of two pounds!

"These trout ponds are often the best waters in a given area for a variety of reasons," Miller said. "Excellent habitat, low species competition and the fact that these ponds are closed to ice-fishing allow these waters to be managed for the trout fishing enthusiast."

While trout ponds are found throughout New Hampshire, many of the most popular are found in the White Mountains, Monadnock and North Country regions. Ponds managed for trout may be stocked with a variety of different-aged fish. Fish and Game stocks more than 50 remote trout ponds with fingerling brook trout via helicopter each spring, offering anglers a wilderness experience. Chapin Pond in Newport, Cole Pond in Enfield and Coon Brook Bog in Pittsburg, all fly-fishing-only waters, are just a sampling of these delightful ponds, where fingerling brook trout often grow to 8-10 inches by their second fall in the pond, and it's not unusual to pull in brookies 15 inches or more. Trophy fish in these areas are brook trout that live to three or more years old.

Clough Pond in Loudon, Dublin Lake in Dublin, Saltmarsh Pond in Gilford and Lucas Pond in Northwood are a few good early season hotspots for trout anglers. Ponds further north, like Long Pond in Benton, Echo Lake in Franconia and the Hall Ponds in Sandwich generally "heat up" a week to ten days later because of higher elevation and harsher climate conditions.

"Trout are prized by anglers because they are challenging and elusive, and catching them is one of the traditional rites of spring," Miller said. "Whether your passion is a multi-colored brook trout, a leaping rainbow or the determined fight of a brown, there's a New Hampshire trout pond for you."

For a list of trout ponds and fly-fishing-only ponds in New Hampshire, as well as a description of special rules that apply to certain ponds, consult the 2007 New Hampshire Freshwater Fishing Digest, available online (click here and on publication cover) or from any Fish and Game license agent.

Annual fishing licenses cost $35 for New Hampshire residents (age 16 and older) and $53 for nonresidents. New Hampshire residents can buy a one-day fishing license for just $10. Nonresidents can opt for 1-, 3- and 7-day licenses. Buy your fishing license online anytime at www.FishNH.com or pick one up from a local Fish and Game license agent. Kids age 15 and under don't need a license to fish in New Hampshire, so bring them along for the fun.

For the latest conditions on New Hampshire's trout ponds, consult the staff in Fish and Game's regional offices (Region 1, Lancaster: 603-788-3164; Region 2, New Hampton: 603-744-5470; Region 3, Durham: 603-868-1095; and Region 4, Keene: 603-352-9669). Staff are always ready to assist anglers.

Each year, more than 267,000 anglers fish in New Hampshire -- taking advantage of 975 lakes and ponds and 12,000 miles of rivers and streams stocked by Fish and Game. For more information on fishing in New Hampshire, click here.

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