Fishing in Hanover
The easiest fishing spot to reach is Mink Brook, right down South Main Street hill (Route 10), half a mile from the Green. If you fish upstream (east) on either side of the brook using your favorite tackle, you might catch trout. There are trails on either side the brook. Fish up to Route 120 near Greensboro Road. From here it is but a short walk back to campus (head north, away from the Hanover Town sheds). When you see the Coop food store, the college is around the bend.
Downstream from the Route 10 bridge (west), the brook widens out, meanders, and is influenced by the changing water levels at Wilder Dam. Fishing this section can produce anything from bass and perch to walleye. The bottom can be mucky, so fishing from the bank is suggested. There is a trailhead where one can park and carry a canoe to the brook should the water be high. You can walk the brook to its confluence with the Connecticut River, opposite the sewage treatment plant, or rent a canoe from the Ledyard Canoe Club and paddle down to the mouth of Mink Brook. This area is a conservation area, so be on the lookout for waterfowl, beaver, mink, otter, and other interesting creatures. The Mink Brook option is good for as much as a half-day outing in either direction, or as little as a half-hour jaunt.
A bike will expand the possibilities upstream from Route 120. The area along Greensboro Road has been built up so be careful of trespassing, not to mention encounters with canine species. Fish the brook to the next main road. Take a left there as well as the next left onto Greensboro Road. In a mile or so you’ll be back at Route 120 for the right turn back to campus.
Ledyard Canoe Club Area
Coming back into New Hampshire, over the Ledyard Bridge, one might consider taking a left turn and locating the Ledyard Canoe Club. A fishing adventure on the river is possible. Calling (603) 643-6709 will determine if canoes are available for fishing trips. Should you have your own, all the better. The canoe club dock is the best spot to start from, as the on-duty managers are knowledgeable about safety and water conditions.
A partner is one of the first requirements for a trip like this: One person to paddle and one to fish. Both, of course, must be licensed. Remember, the river belongs to New Hampshire up to the shoreline on the Vermont side. As long as you are in the water as you approach Vermont, things are fine. Personally, I would not disembark to fish the west bank of the river without a Vermont license.
In order not to need a truck to bring gear down to the river, decide first which of the many species available in these waters you are going to pursue.
Try fishing either side of the river along the banks, upstream or down. For smallmouth, any type of fishing rod can be used, depending on the lure. A casting, spinning, or fly rod is in order if you intend to work the shorelines for this surface feeder. Look for cover, downed trees, rocky ledges, or weedy growth. Watch the current flow in the river as it can change gradually.
This spot can be reached on foot or by bike from campus by heading north along Route 10 toward Lyme. The brook is the outlet of Storrs Pond and is located down hill, past the Chieftain Motel, on the right. Bass and other warm water species are found here, along with an occasional northern pike. Park carefully, well off the road.
Lion’s Club Boat Landing
After heading north on Route 10 for approximately 2 miles, take a left turn at Fullington Farm. There is a sign indicating the turn. Fishing here is similar to that from the Ledyard Canoe Club. Try the cutbacks for largemouth bass when the water warms up in the spring. A 10-pounder was caught here a while ago. Use a bait or spinning rod for this area. Deep running plugs such as spinner baits work, as do flashy spoons.
A powerboat can be used, but a canoe is suitable. Try trolling or casting for walleyes and bass after the river has stabilized in the summer.
About 5 miles north of campus on Route 10, make a left turn onto River Road. From here to the East Thetford Bridge in Lyme there are various spots available for bass and other fish. The road is about five miles long. Just after the lumber mill, after a mile, there is an island where the river divides. Good fish have been caught here from both shore and boat. A canoe comes in handy to fish the marshes just past Shoestrap Road, after two miles. Look for the sharp turn and narrow bridge as the road turns to gravel.
Hewes Brook enters the river along this stretch, and there are good trout to be found in spring and fall. Keep your eyes open for pull-offs along the road as these are indicators of where others have parked to fish the river. Don’t block driveways or farm access roads. (For details, see below.)
Continuing past Shoestrap Road on River Road, there are plenty of marshy stretches. Many try a fly rod and poppers for smallmouth bass in this stretch of the river. Other types of light tackle will work as well. Summer evenings are a great time for some relaxed fun. At the East Thetford Bridge, take a right turn and drive into Lyme. You will be back on Route 10 in about a mile, as the road ends at the village green. A right turn will bring you back to campus, if you’ve had your fill of adventure.
Continue on Route 10 from the Lion’s Club boat landing. Stay on Route 10, past River Road, to Goose Pond Road, at the Lyme-Hanover town line. Turn right to find the brook _ located less than a quarter mile further. This is a great little brook that gets fished early, but holds trout well into the summer, especially in the stretches along Shoestrap Road. Fish the accessible water at Goose Pond Road, then return to Route 10 and turn right. There is a road to a gravel pit, just past the 13 Dartmouth College Highway development further north. The brook can be reached again from here.
Shoestrap Road intersects Route 10 about a half-mile further on. The brook parallels this gravel road on the west side. Find a safe place to pull off and head down hill to the brook. Fish to the river and back.