Fishing in Massachusetts

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Massachusetts is as rich in fly fishing history as it is in fly fishing opportunities. Trout fanatics take to the inland streams for some of New England?s best brown, rainbow, and brook trout fishing, while big-game seekers head to the coast in search of their favorite Atlantic saltwater species including the ever-popular striped bass.

Western Massachusetts holds some trout fishing gems such as the Deerfield River and the Swift River. The Deerfield River is a larger tailwater, with cold, clear water that provides year-round fishing for both stocked and wild browns and rainbows. The Swift River flows through beautiful wilderness and provides excellent fishing for wild brook trout as well as runs of landlocked Atlantic salmon coming up river from Quabbin Reservoir. Central Massachusetts has several excellent trout streams of note including the Squannacock River and the Nissitisset River ? the state?s first fly-fishing-only, catch and release area. Eastern Massachusetts is home to the Merrimack River and its many tributaries, all of which provide phenomenal fishing for rainbows, browns, and brookies, as well as true sea-run Atlantic salmon, some reaching upwards of 20 pounds.

Beyond the many trout fishing opportunities throughout Massachusetts, quality saltwater fly fishing exists all along the Atlantic coastline, from Gloucester Harbor in the north, through Massachusetts Bay and Boston Harbor, all around Cape Cod, and down through the Nantucket Sound. Striped bass are perhaps the most popular species to chase with a fly rod, but bluefish, sea bass, Spanish mackerel, and flounder are available for the catching.

MA Department of Fish & Wildlife
251 Causeway St, Suite 400
Boston, MA 02114-2152
P: (617) 626-1500

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