Department of Environmental Conservation

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Adirondack/Lake Champlain Fishing

Within the Adirondack Park and Lake Champlain region of northeastern New York State, the DEC Region 5 Fisheries staff is responsible for managing fisheries within the lakes, ponds, streams and rivers of eight counties to ensure populations remain sustainable for year round fishing opportunities.

Photo of a male brook trout

Brook Trout Waters and Top Fishing Spots

Region 5 offers diverse open water fishing experiences from early Spring to late Fall. Trout and salmon season starts on the streams in early April and moves to the lakes and ponds as ice-out progresses through April and May. The month of May also sees the opening of the walleye and pike seasons. Summer brings the start of bass season and excellent fishing for largemouth and smallmouth bass. And of course, there are many opportunities to catch panfish such as perch and sunfish throughout the year.

Use the links on the right for information on open water fishing opportunities on the lakes and rivers of the Adirondack region. Each of the eight county pages has one table of brook trout waters and a second series for the remaining game fish. The waters range from small streams and ponds to large lakes and rivers. Anglers can wade or fish from shore in many cases, but even a small boat will greatly increase your fishing options.

Adirondack lake photo

Fishing for brook trout on an Adirondack pond is the signature angling experience in Region 5. The beautifully colored "Brookie" or "Speckled Trout" is the State Fish of New York and is highly prized. The experience of fishing for brookies on a small pond in a wild setting is largely unique to this area. The brook trout table is not a listing of "trophy" waters, but rather a catalog of all waters containing brook trout. The table includes remote lakes and ponds as well as streams and other ponded waters. There are many roadside opportunities, but the reward is usually commensurate with the effort to get away from the highway.

Region 5 offers many angling possibilities other than brook trout and these are listed in the second set of tables on each County page. Use this listing for locations of the other game fish such as: brown trout, rainbow trout, lake trout, splake, kokanee salmon, landlocked salmon, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, tiger muskellunge, muskellunge, northern pike, pickerel and walleye. Unlike the brook trout table, the "Top Fishing" tables list only quality fishing opportunities.

Trout Fishing Opportunities in Region 5

DECinfo Locator- Interactive Trout Stream Fishing Map (DECinfo Locator is best viewed on a desktop computer).
Trout Stream Fishing Map User Guide ("How to" instructions for using the fishing map on DECinfo Locator).

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Access for Anglers with Disabilities

Find accessible fishing piers, platforms and launches that provide access to waters in the Adirondack / Lake Champlain Region.

Lake Champlain Fishing

Young man holding a smallmouth bass caught in Lalke Champlain

Click on the links at the right of the page to learn about fishing for landlocked Atlantic salmon and lake trout. The Boquet, Saranac and Ausable Rivers are tributaries to Lake Champlain and provide salmon fishing opportunities in the Spring and Fall. In addition, the lake proper holds good numbers of lake trout for year round fishing.

Ice Fishing

For the hardy angler the fishing season extends into the winter on many of our waters. Click on the links at the right of the page for lists of lakes and ponds where ice fishing is allowed.

Adirondack/Lake Champlain Fishing Links

Large Lakes (multiple counties)

Clinton County Fishing Opportunities

Essex County Fishing Opportunities

Franklin County Fishing Opportunities

Fulton County Fishing Opportunities

Hamilton County Fishing Opportunities

Saratoga County Fishing Opportunities

I FISH NY Guide to Capital District Fishing (PDF) (2.1 MB)

Warren County Fishing Opportunities

Washington County Fishing Opportunities

Lake Champlain and Tributaries Fishing Opportunities