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Guides, locations, fishing licenses, for fishing on a Vermont vacation

Fresh water fishing and fly fishing are abundant in Vermont's lakes and rivers and streams. The state Department of Fish & Wildlife offers guides, licenses, information about fishing tournaments, derbys, and other fishing events. Boat ramps are numerous and easy to find. Vermont is also a great state for padding canoes and kayaks.
Fishing licenses are required for all persons over the age of 14. Resident and nonresident licenses may be purchased online or by mail from the Vermont Department of Fish & Wildlife Department , many sporting goods stores, convenience stores, some town clerk offices, and at the Fish & Wildlife office in Waterbury, at 802-241-3700. Licenses expire on December 31.

118 Button Bay State Park Road Vergennes, VT, 05491 Phone: 802-475-2377

Camping above Lake Champlain; great views; lifeguarded pool; trails; nature center

This park on a bluff above Lake Champlain is popular for water sports of all kinds, including fishing. Canoes, kayaks, and rowboats are available to rent.
See a full description of Button Bay State Park.

460 Marsh Farm Road (Route 236) Enosberg Falls, VT, 05450 Phone: 802-933-8383

One of VT’s top 5 parks for paddling & boating; lots of campsites; pets not allowed in day use area

At 1375 acres, Carmi is the fourth largest lake in Vermont. Fish species in the lake are northern pike, walleyes, and other warm water species. The state park includes over two miles of frontage on the shores of Lake Carmi.
See a full description of Lake Carmi State Park.

65 Emerald Lake Lane East Dorset, VT, 05253 Phone: 802-362-1655

Best for camping, swimming, paddling, fishing, walking & hiking; motorized boats prohibited

The park is located on Emerald Lake, and it is loved by people who do water sports. Paddling is allowed; motor boats are prohibited. Species for fishing include yellow perch, small mouth bass, northern pike and other warm-water species.
See a full description of Emerald Lake State Park.

Lowell Lake

Lowell Lake Road Londonderry, VT Phone:

Description: It is free to access this undeveloped state park, which offers shoreline fishing, picnic facilities, and portable toilets. If you have your own canoe, you can launch it here. Motorized boats are not allowed.
Species: Largemouth bass, chain pickerel, yellow perch, pumpkinseed sunfish, bullhead.
Directions: From the junction of VT Route 100 and VT Route 11 in Londonderry Village, travel east on VT-11 for about 3 miles. Turn left (north) onto Lowell Lake Road. Icehouse Road will bring you to a parking area near the lake.

Shelburne Bay

Bay Road Shelburne, VT Phone:

Description: Shelburne Bay is a large bay on Lake Champlain. You can fish along the shoreline at the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department’s access area, with best fishing from the bridge on Bay Road to the point. You can also access the La Platte River, where the best fishing is usually found closer to the bridge.
Species: This access area offers excellent fishing both in Shelburne Bay and in the La Platte River for fish species such as yellow perch, white perch, bluegill sunfish, smallmouth and largemouth bass, rock bass, brown bullhead, and northern pike. If you fish in early spring and late fall, you may encounter lake trout or rainbow trout. Late spring and early summer offers excellent fishing for panfish and bass and northern pike.
Location: Bay Road.
Directions: Take US Route 7 to Shelburne and turn west onto Bay Road. Travel west on Bay Road approximately 1 mile, and the Access Area will be on the right. Once at the access area you can either fish the La Platte River (Bay Road crosses this river) or Shelburne Bay and Lake Champlain itself.

2714 Hathaway Point Road St. Albans, VT, 05481 Phone: 802-534-6021

Seimming and boating from a peninsula; kayaks for rent; public boat ramp; pets not allowed

Located on the southern end of St. Albans Point, a long, narrow peninsula, Kamp Kill Kare State Park has a swimming area and a public boat launching ramp that reaches deep water quickly. There are kayaks for rent. Season & Hours: Memorial Day-Labor Day; day use hours, 10 a.m.-sunset.
See full description of Kamp Kill Kare State Park.

1621 Black Pond Road Fair Haven, VT, 05743 Phone: 802-273-2848

Kid-friendly fishing opportunities in pond and 2 lakes; fish for bass, yellow perch, and panfish

There are two sandy beaches on the pond for swimming and sunning; rowboats, kayaks, canoes and pedal boats are available for rent (no motor boats allowed). The pond also has excellent fishing for largemouth bass, panfish, and perch. More fishing is at nearby Glen Lake and Lake Bomoseen.
Family-friendly fishing guidelines.
See a full description of Half Moon Pond State Park.

Gale Meadows Pond

Gale Meadows Road Londonderry/Winhall, VT Phone:

Description: The Vermont Fish and Wildlife access area provides opportunities to fish from shore or launch your own boat.
Species: Largemouth bass, chain pickerel, yellow perch, rock bass, bullhead
Directions: From the junction of VT Route 100 and VT Route 30 in Rawsonville, travel west on VT-30 for about 2.8 miles. Turn right (north) onto River Rd, which becomes Gale Meadow Road Follow Gale Meadow Road to the fishing access area (roughly 2 miles from VT-30).

Marshfield Reservoir (aka Molly’s Falls Reservoir)

US Route 2 Cabot, VT Phone:

Description: The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department access area offers plenty of opportunity to fish from shore, including two fishing platforms. You can also launch a boat here if you like.
Species: You can expect to catch smallmouth bass, chain pickerel, and yellow perch. Though rare when compared with these species, northern pike also live in the reservoir. Trout are stocked here, but the best trout fishing will be in the spring before the water gets too warm and they move to deeper waters.
Location: US Route 2.
Directions: The access area is on US Route 2, roughly midway between Montpelier and St. Johnsbury.

22 Cedar Mountain Road Castleton, VT, 05743 Phone: 802-265-4242

Good for camping, swimming, fishing, boating (boat rentals); pets allowed in campground

Boating and fishing in Lake Bomoseen and Glen Lake may be reached via access points at Bomoseen State Park and adjacent Half Moon State Park. The park has a beach for swimming and a picnic area. Also at the swimming beach are a snack bar, rentals of canoes, kayaks, rowboats, and pedal boats. See full description of Bomoseen State Park.

Stoughton Pond

Stoughton Pond Road Weathersfield, VT Phone:

Description: The US Army Corps of Engineers’ day-use area offers shoreline fishing access, picnic facilities, and restrooms.
Species: Largemouth bass, yellow perch, bullhead, and pumpkinseed sunfish can be found in Echo Lake. Trout are also stocked there, but your best fishing for them will be in the spring.
Directions: From I-91, get off at exit 8 and travel west on VT Route 131 for about 6.8 miles. Turn left (south) onto VT Route 106. After about 1.8 miles, turn left onto Stoughton Pond Road. The US Army Corps of Engineers day-use area will be on your left just before the road crosses the dam.

Newark Pond

Newark Pond Road Newark, VT Phone:

Description: The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department owns an access area near the north end of the pond. You can either cast from the access area or from the shoulder of the road, which travels right along the north end of the pond. You can also fish from the road shoulder at the dry hydrant, further south. If you have a boat, you can launch one at the access area.
Species: Smallmouth bass and yellow perch are abundant in this pond. The bass tend to be small, but the average size of the perch is larger than most ponds in the area. The pond is stocked with trout, but when the water gets warm in summer, they go to deeper water, and you won’t be able to catch them from shore.
Techniques: The weedbed near the access area provides cover for fish. Rig up with a worm under a bobber and cast toward the weeds. A small spinner is a good choice for an artificial lure.
Directions: From Lyndonville, head north on US Route 5. In the village of West Burke, turn right onto VT Route 5A. After 0.8 miles, turn right onto Newark Street. Travel on Newark Street for about 5.8 miles, and turn left onto Newark Pond Rd. You will come to the pond in about another 1.4 miles.

177 Reservoir Road Waterbury Center, VT, 05677 Phone: 802-244-1226

Rated one of VT’s top five parks for paddling and boating; also, swimming, fishing; no pets

Waterbury Center State Park is on a peninsula extending into Waterbury Reservoir. It is located within the Mount Mansfield State Forest. It is popular for boating, fishing, swimming, and picnicking. The main sport fish are smallmouth bass, rainbow and brown trout. Also: yellow perch and brown bullhead. Fishing licenses are required for people above age 14. For information on fishing licenses and regulations, contact the Department of Fish & Wildlife at 802-241-3700.
See: Waterbury Reservoir Boating guidelines.
See full description of Waterbury Center State Park

48 Salmon Hole Lane Jamaica, VT Phone: 802-874-4600

Tent/trailer camping; autumn white water release; good fishing; pets allowed

The West River is also a favorite spot for many fishermen because of its combination of deep and slow moving water and its shallow, fast ripples.
See full description of Jamaica State Park.

3570 Lake Dunmore Road (Route 53) Brandon, VT, 05733 Phone: 888-409-7579

Popular for hiking and swimming; pets allowed in day use area and campsites

Branbury State Park is located on the eastern shore of Lake Dunmore. The park has a long sand beach on Lake Dunmore and the large open meadows. Fishing is done at the beach. Rowboats, canoes, and paddle boats are available for rent. Pets are not allowed on the beach.
See a full description of Branbury State Park.

Bullhead Pond

Bullhead Pond Road Manchester, VT Phone:

Description: The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department land around the pond provides good opportunities for fishing from shore. There is no entrance fee.
Species: Largemouth bass, yellow perch, and brown bullhead live in the pond. Brook trout are stocked there, but if your preference is for trout, you will have to go in the spring before the water gets too warm.
Directions: Take VT Route 7A north from Manchester for about 3.2 miles. Just north of the Manchester Country Club golf course and then Fin Bar Road on your right, turn right onto the driveway which will take you to the north side of the pond.

96 Bellwater Avenue Barton, VT, 05822 Phone: 802-525-6205

Swimming and boating in glacial lake; cottage for rent; pets not allowed

Crystal Lake is a glacial lake surrounded by rough-hewn mountains. The beach area has a mile of sandy shoreline with a swimming area. The historic granite bathhouse has bathrooms, changing areas, and a concession stand. Also: picnic tables, charcoal grills, play areas, boats and canoes for rent. The Crystal Lake cottage is for rent; it accommodates up to six people. Season & Hours: Memorial Day-Labor Day; day use hours, 10 a.m.-sunset.
Park map.

Lower Winooski River

Description: There are two public access areas on the lower Winooski River, which is located in Colchester and Burlington and drains into Lake Champlain. Both access areas have fishing platforms, and the fishing is often good right from the platforms. At Windermere Way Access Area you can walk down the bike path and get near the mouth of the river. The fishing platform at Windermere Way is also accessible to wheelchairs. The Heineberg Bridge Access Area is further upstream, where VT Route 127 crosses the river.
Species: The Lower Winooski River has any species found in Lake Champlain. Some common species you should expect to encounter are: yellow perch, white perch, smallmouth and largemouth bass, brown bullhead, and northern pike. In general, mid-May through fall offers excellent fishing in the lower river, but the variety and abundance of species will change through the season.
Directions: To get to Windermere Way Access Area, take I-89 to Exit 16. Head north on US Route 7 toward Colchester. Turn left onto Blakely Road and travel to Lakeshore Drive. Bear left onto Lakeshore Drive and continue to Holy Cross Road. Continue on Holy Cross to a 4-way intersection where you will continue straight towards Colchester Point. Turn left onto Windermere Way and follow to the access area.
To get to the Heineburg Bridge Access Area, take Exit 16 from I-89 onto US Route 7. Travel north for approximately 2 miles to Colchester, then turn left onto VT Route 127. Travel on VT Route 127 approximately 4 miles to Malletts Bay, then turn left onto Prim Road (Rte. 127 continuation). Travel another 1.75 miles on Rte 127/Prim Road, and the entrance to the Access Area will be on the right just before Rte 127 crosses the Winooski River.

Sunset Lake

VT Route 65 Brookfield, VT Phone:

Description: Children who have difficulty casting may find it easier to fish from the floating bridge that crosses this pond.
Species: You can expect to catch largemouth and smallmouth bass and yellow perch. Trout are stocked here, but the best trout fishing will be in the spring before the water gets too warm.
Directions: Get off of Interstate 89 at exit 5, and head west on VT Route 64 for 2.8 miles, then turn left (south) onto VT Route 12 for about 4.2 miles. Turn left (east onto) VT-65. You will come to Sunset Lake in about 3 miles (just after you cross the interstate).

Union Village Dam

Visitors can enjoy hiking and nature trails, swimming, fishing, and picnic areas. Hunting for large and small game, as well as waterfowl, is permitted.

Colton and Kent Ponds

VT Route 100 Killington, VT Phone:

Description: These two ponds are separated by less than a mile. There is a Vermont Fish and Wildlife access area at each pond. At Kent Pond, the best place to fish is along the dam breast. Gifford Woods State Park is just across the road from Kent Pond and offers camping and hiking opportunities.
Species: Kent Pond has a very abundant largemouth bass population. It also has pumpkinseed sunfish, and you can catch trout there in the spring. Colton Pond offers largemouth bass, yellow perch, and early season brook trout fishing.
Directions: Both ponds can be easily accessed from VT Route 100, just north of the junction with US Route 4.

36 East Shore South Grand Isle, VT Phone: 802-372-4300

Lots of campsites; large sandy beach, swimming, shore fishing, sports fields

Shore fishing in Lake Champlain is simple at this destination park, very popular for family camping and water sports. Areas along the lake shore permit access for swimming and shore fishing. Registered campers may launch boats. Kayaks and rowboats are available for rent. Campers are allowed free entry to the sand beach at Knight Point State Park (seven miles to the north) and Alburg Dunes State Park (19 miles to the north).
See a full description of Grand Isle State Park.

Echo Lake

Camp Road Plymouth, VT Phone:

Description: With the purchase of an entrance fee, the state park offers shoreline fishing, camping (for large groups only), swimming, concession stand, and a playground. You can also rent a boat there. If you have your own boat, you can launch it for free at the Vermont Fish and Wildlife access area on the west shore of the lake.
Species: Largemouth and smallmouth bass, chain pickerel, yellow perch, bullhead, and pumpkinseed sunfish can be found in Echo Lake. Trout are also stocked there, but your best fishing for them will be in the spring.
Directions: From US Route 4 travel south on VT Route 100 for 10.5 miles. At Echo Lake Inn (on your right), turn left onto Kingdom Road. Drive 0.7 miles and turn left onto Camp Road. State Park is 0.5 miles up road on your left.

3034 VT Route 30 South Poultney, VT, 05764 Phone: 802-287-9158

Lakeside camping; beach; boating, fishing; boat rentals; pets allowed except in day use area

Lake St. Catherine State Park has shoreline fishing and boat rentals. Species in the lake include largemouth and smallmouth bass, northern pike, yellow perch, crappie, bullhead, bluegill, and pumpkinseed sunfish. Panfish can be caught all years, but the best time to catch them is April and May. Bass and pike fishing are best from May into September. A "Let’s Go Fishing" workshop for kids is offered on the second Saturday in June. Children learn how to tie knots, make lures, understand regulations, and use spin-casting rods.
Fishing guide.

Sadawga Pond

Sawdaga Lake Road, off Route 100 Whitingham, VT Phone:

Description: The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department’s access area offers shoreline fishing opportunities, or you could launch your own boat.
Species: Largemouth bass, chain pickerel, pumpkinseed sunfish, yellow perch, bullhead.
Directions: From Brattleboro, travel west on VT Route 9 for about 17.5 miles. Turn left (south) onto VT Route 100. After a little over 6 miles, look for Sadawga Lake Road on your left.

Baker Pond (VT)

VT Route 12 Brookfield, VT, 05060 Phone:

Description: The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department owns this pond, which has plenty of places to fish from shore. You can also launch a small boat here.
Species: Largemouth bass and pumpkinseed sunfish are abundant in this pond. The pond is also stocked with brook trout, but your best chances of catching them will be in the spring before the water gets too warm.
Directions: Get off of Interstate 89 at exit 5, and head west on VT Route 64 for 2.8 miles, then turn left (south) onto VT Route 12. The Baker Pond Access Area will be on your right in about 4.2 miles.