Winnipesaukee salmon are still cruising the shorelines looking for a smelt snack. The other freshwater favorite has been swimbaits for big bass. The salt has been slow to get off the ground with those scoring haddock needing to haul out to far away ledges.
New Hampshire Fishing Report
Mike from The Tackle Shack in Meredith told me that the stellar salmon fishing of last week has settled down to merely “good” as fish now seem to be in cruise mode and liable to be found most anywhere in the big lake! Smelt are still a best bait option as is trolling the top 10’ of the water column. Meredith Bay rainbows have more than took up the slack with Power Bait prac-titioners doing every bit as well as the live bait guys! Tim Moore from Tim Moore Outdoors point-ed out 19 Mile Bay as one of the better spots as well as the Lakeport Dam area in Laconia. Smelt are still in the shallows and spawning with salmon, lakers and rainbows not far away. For the fun of it, I asked Tim about white perch, which are such an ice fishing staple, and he said that the same spots which produce under the ice work during the open water season will work well most of the year.
Captain Andy from Adventure and Catch Charters told me that due to inces-sant commercial pounding of inshore groundfish locations, he’s having to steam out to as far as Pigeon Cove to find the haddock! That’s a haul and not every skipper is that committed to finding the fish, but Andy is certainly the exception. Redfish have been plentiful as has hake.
Southern Maine Fishing Report
There’s not much to report yet from Maine. The few who have their boats at the ready have found slim windows to, say the least, from which to launch! Of course everything is going to change dramatically in a few weeks when the striper surge begins! Zach from Saco Bay Tackle Company said that a few patrons are tossing swimbaits to out-sized largemouth bass in “trout” water bodies such as the Otter Ponds and Lake Ossipee. The groundswell of anglers switching to this sort of fishing is a phenomenon for good reason – those plugs pluck out bass that many didn’t even realize existed in a given pond or lake! The other option is anglers who are searching out streams and brooks for brook trout, especially natives! Wild brookies may be small but are they ever special!
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New Hampshire And Southern Maine Fishing Forecast
For Winnipesaukee salmon try trolling a streamer near marina docks/mouths of rivers. Pre-spawn largemouth and smallmouth bass are now “feeding for many” and a big swimbait looks the part of a substantial meal! Redfish and hake can be found in good numbers on top of Jeffrey’s Ledge but scoring limits of haddock now is proving more difficult than it was two weeks ago. Be prepared to head east a bit to find your own haddock honey hole!