Great Fishing In New Hampshire
Guide to fishing in the Granite State
The purpose of this page is to share basic information about the best fishing lakes in the state, plus the species found in each lake.
New Hampshire is a haven for fishing enthusiasts, offering a wide variety of fish species and diverse fishing environments. The state's warm water fisheries are home to popular species like largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, pickerel, and panfish. Anglers can explore numerous ponds, lakes, and rivers, such as Lake Winnipesaukee, Lake Wentworth, and the Merrimack River, in search of these warm water favorites. Whether casting from the shore or cruising the waters in a boat, anglers can experience the thrill of hooking into hard-fighting bass or reeling in panfish for a delicious meal.
In addition to warm water fisheries, New Hampshire's cold water fisheries are renowned for their populations of trout and salmon. Lakes like Lake Sunapee, Lake Winnisquam, and Squam Lake are prime destinations for catching species such as rainbow trout, brown trout, landlocked salmon, and lake trout. These cold water lakes provide opportunities for anglers to practice fly fishing, trolling, or bait fishing, as they seek these prized and elusive species. With breathtaking scenery and serene surroundings, fishing in New Hampshire's cold water fisheries offers a tranquil and rewarding experience.
New Hampshire's ponds, both warm and cold water, also provide excellent fishing opportunities. Ponds like Swains Lake, Mascoma Lake, and Ossipee Lake are known for their productive fisheries, hosting a mix of warm water and cold water species. These smaller bodies of water are often easily accessible and offer a more intimate fishing experience. Anglers can target a variety of fish, including bass, trout, panfish, and even northern pike in some cases. Ponds are great for those seeking a quieter and more secluded fishing adventure.
Lastly, New Hampshire's rivers offer unique fishing opportunities, with the Connecticut River, Merrimack River, and Pemigewasset River being popular choices. These rivers are home to an array of fish species, including smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, trout, catfish, and even migratory species like American shad. Anglers can enjoy casting from the riverbanks or drifting along the currents in a kayak or canoe. River fishing presents its own set of challenges and rewards, with the opportunity to hook into a variety of species while immersing oneself in the natural beauty of the surrounding landscapes.
Whether you prefer the thrill of bass fishing in lakes, the serenity of fly fishing in cold water fisheries, the versatility of pond fishing, or the dynamic currents of river fishing, New Hampshire's diverse fishing options cater to all preferences. With its abundant fish populations and stunning natural scenery, New Hampshire is a prime destination for anglers seeking memorable fishing experiences.
Cold, clear water in the state of New Hampshire makes the perfect home for big trout and salmon. Many NH lakes also offer excellent fishing for smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, white catfish, black crappie, white crappie, walleye, rainbow trout, brook trout, brown trout, lake trout, bluegill, pumpkinseed sunfish, rock bass, white perch, yellow perch, Atlantic salmon, coho salmon, stripers, bowfin, chain pickerel, northern pike and tiger muskie. Visit local lakes, rivers, ponds and streams to wet a line. In winter, ice fishing is popular.
Major New Hampshire Lakes & Species
Lake & Fish Chart
This chart shows the major angling destinations, cross referencing these waters with the major species to be found in each of the lakes or impoundments.
For a detailed list of primary fish species in NH, plus state fish records, see the list below.
Fishing lake sizes and locations in the state.
Bow Lake is a 1,200-acre lake in the southeast part of the state, at Cornway.
Comerford Lake is an 1,100-acre lake on the western border of the state, at Monroe.
Conway Lake is a 1,300-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, 4 miles north of Northwood.
First Connecticut Lake is a 2,800-acre lake in the northern tip of the state, 6 miles northeast of Pittsburg.
Great East Lake is an 1,800-acre lake on the eastern border of the state, at Wakefield.
Lake Francis is a 2,100-acre lake in the northern tip of the state, at Pittsburg.
Lake Sunapee is a 4,100-acre lake in the central part of the state, at Sunapee.
Lake Wentworth is a 3,000-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, at Wolfeboro.
Lake Winnipesaukee is a 44,000-acre lake in the east-central part of the state, at Wolfeboro.
Mascoma Lake is a 1,100-acre lake in the west-central part of the state, at Enfield.
Massabesic Lake is a 2,900-acre lake in the southeast part of the state, at Auburn.
Merrymeeting Lake is an 1,100-acre lake in the east-central part of the state, 2 miles north of New Durham.
Moore Reservoir is a 3,500-acre lake on the western border of the state, 2 miles west of Littleton.
Newfound Lake is a 4,100-acre lake in the central part of the state, at Bridgewater.
Ossipee Lake is a 3,100-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, at Center Ossipee.
Paugus Bay is a 1,200-acre lake in the central part of the state, at Laconia.
Second Connecticut Lake is a 1,300-acre lake in the northern tip of the state, 10 miles northeast of Pittsburg.
Silver Lake is a 1,000-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, at Silver Lake.
Squam Lake is a 6,700-acre lake in the north-central part of the state, at Holderness.
Umbagog Lake is a 7,600-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, 5 miles east of Errol.
Winnisquam Lake is a 4,300-acre lake in the east-central part of the state, at Laconia.
Fish Species & State Records in New Hampshire
World record: 22 lbs 4 oz
State Record: 10 lbs 8 oz
World record: 11 lbs 15 oz
State Record: 7 lbs 14.5 oz
World record: 58 lbs 0 oz
State Record: 15 lbs 5.3 oz
World record: 22 lbs 0 oz
State Record: 5 lbs 11 oz
World record: 6 lbs 0 oz
State Record: 2 lbs 15.84 oz
World record: 25 lbs 0 oz
State Record: 12 lbs 8.8 oz
World record: 42 lbs 2 oz
State Record: 15 lbs 7.2 oz
World record: 14 lbs 8 oz
State Record: 9 lbs 0 oz
World record: 40 lbs 4 oz
State Record: 16 lbs 6 oz
World record: 72 lbs 0 oz
State Record: 37 lbs 10.4 oz
World record: 4 lbs 12 oz
State Record: 2 lbs 0.64 oz
World record: 2 lbs 4 oz
State Record: 1 lbs 1.76 oz
World record: 3.0 lbs
State Record: 1 lbs 8 oz
World record: 4.6 lbs
State Record: 3 lbs 11.5 oz
World record: 4 lbs 3 oz
State Record: 2 lbs 6 oz
World record: 79 lbs 2 oz
State Record: 18 lbs 8 oz
World record: 97 lbs 4 oz
State Record: 19 lbs 4 oz
World record: 33 lbs 7 oz
State Record: 16 lbs 3 oz
World record: 81 lbs 14 oz
State Record: 60 lbs 0 oz
World record: 21 lbs 8 oz
State Record: 8 lbs 13 oz
World record: 9 lbs 6 oz
State Record: 8 lbs 0 oz
World record: 55 lbs 1 oz
State Record: 26 lbs 9.44 oz
World record: 51 lbs 2 oz
State Record: 11 lbs 11.68 oz
Click the images and links above for species details.
State of NH Fishing Information
Fishing, Boating & Camping
Visit AA-Boats-Boating.com to find information about fishing boats in New Hampshire and other boating information.
Fish for big bass
Excellent largemouth bass and smallmouth bass fishing opportunities are available to anglers, here.
Fishing in all states