One of our favorite fall fishing locations is Chocorua Lake in Tamworth.
This lake is an artificially raised water body that holds all species of warm-water fishes and is stocked with rainbow trout by the New Hampshire Department of Fish and Game.
Due to the dam, Lake Chocorua averages a depth of 12 feet but has areas that run deeper. These deeper areas are the ones to concentrate on with angling in mind. The cooler water provides refuge for the trout and the larger bass that inhabit the lake.
Paddling around the lake while trolling a fly or lure is the best way to locate fish. A Red Gray Ghost or a Mickey Finn fly will draw strikes when you troll over the fish. A rooster tail or a Mepps spinner will also attract fish. Once fish are located, anchor your craft and continue casting. The action can be nonstop. If action slows down, begin trolling again until another pod of fish is found.
The lake is guarded by the ever-present Mount Chocorua. It looks down over the lake and makes for one of the more memorable fishing locations in the state.
This time of year, don’t be surprised to find snow on the peak. It is a sign of the winter that is right around the corner. It adds to the beauty of the fishing.
When the weather gets a little unseasonably warm, the midges will start to hatch on the lake. The lake stays warmer than most in the area due to the dam holding back water and creating unnatural shallow areas. These shallow areas will warm in the fall sunshine. Rainbow trout will move to these shallow areas to feed on the midges.
Many times, these rises will be seen in the middle of the lake. This is the shallow area that has two deeper basins on the north and the south side. Rainbow trout will come up out of the cooler water to feed. If you see these rises, switch out your trolling fly and throw on a size 18 Griffith’s Gnat. Rainbows find them irresistible under these conditions.
Bass and pickerel are feeding heavily as well to bulk up for the winter. Any type of a bait fish imitation will draw strikes from these warm-water fish. Whenever bait fish are seen jumping out of the water, this is the clue to throw your lure into the scrum. Nervous bait fish are the tell that bigger fish are on the feed.
If you don’t have a craft to float the lake, there are places that are wadeable. The channel between the big lake and little lake sees fish swimming between the two bodies of water. You can park in the grove parking area and wade the shallow portions of the lake. A hundred yards north of the bridge is a drop-off. Fish between there and the channel to find fish that are contemplating a visit to the little lake. Some huge bass have been caught here, so be ready.
Lake Chocorua is found on Route 16 in Tamworth. There are two public access points.
The public beach on the east side of the lake or the grove at the south end of the lake.
Lake Chocorua is a no-motors lake. It is a carry-in lake as well. There are no places to launch a trailered craft on Lake Chocorua.
Tip Of The Week
Stillwater dwelling rainbow trout in the valley tend to favor flies with red. Red Gray Ghost, Llama or the Mickey Finn will catch these fish on the fly.
Steve Angers is a native son to the Conway area. He has been consumed by fishing since catching his first wild brook trout at the base of Champney Falls.