Northern New Hampshire Landlocked Salmon

#1
I have to tell this story, and I'm going to let the pictures do the talking for the most part, probably too many pictures.

My in-laws live in Pittsburg, NH, the last town before the Canadian border, and home of the Connecticut River headwaters. I have been visiting this area for over ten years, but generally in off season times like the Holidays. This year I told myself I would learn about the river and add fly fishing to our annual visit... with a priority on landlocked salmon and brookies. I had hiked all over the area, but with limited time to fish I needed to cut the learning curve. I contacted local guide, Greg Inglis, out of Orvis' Lopstick Lodge. I had never hired a guide and was pretty apprehensive. As soon as I walked into the shop in the morning I knew I had made the right decision. Greg said if I wanted to hike in, we had a great chance at finding some landlocked salmon moving into the rivers from the lakes to spawn. Here's how it went... and no those aren't browns.
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It was an incredible day, and I had a very hard time picking out photos to post. I insisted that Greg fish a run towards the end of the day, and 5 minutes later he was battling a fish that jumped all the way down the river. I had a great day fishing with Greg and learning about landlocked salmon and the wild brookies we found. I did find a small rainbow at the end of the day, but no brown trout to wrap up the Great North Woods Grand Slam. He was very knowledgeable and a blast to fish with. I think I told him enough stories about Puget Sound Searuns that I wouldn't be surprised to find him standing on my porch sometime soon. The best part was taking the knowledge he gave me and finding a pair of awesome salmon the next morning on my own. A day I won't soon forget.
 

John Hicks

Owner and operator of Sea Run Pursuits
#4
I used to live in Manchester and would fish northern NH all the time. I love fishing in the fall in New Hampshire.
 

Freestone

Not to be confused with freestoneangler
#7
Fantastic report Steve! Looks like you got into some great fish. It is awesome that you'll now have a reason to bring a rod along on future visits. There is so much good water to explore up there you're going to have a blast.

I fished up there a couple of summers ago and loved the feisty brookies. I expected it to be crowded but once I got 50 yards away from the parking/access areas, I never saw another soul. Lopstick Lodge is awesome and I'd love to stay there someday. I was camping NW-style (aka sleeping in the rental car) and while it is normal for me, it must not be done up there as everyone felt sorry for me. The wonderful Lopstick Lodge hostess adopted me and let me come to the lodge in the mornings for coffee and to use the internet to check in with home and work as I had no cell signal. I'll always be grateful and hopefully, I'll get back up there someday.
 
#8
It was definitly a beautiful time of year, I couldn't ask for better fishing or weather. I can't wait to hit it again next year... and now I'll be looking for the big bruisers! They are a fun fish to chase, and I'm bringing a 4 wt switch to swing streamers... the grabs were awesome. We got them stripping streamers, on an even swing, and then on nymphs. Pretty fun to break down a run three different ways and find fish all over. I lucked out for sure.

Now it's time for fall SRC... Looks like you found them Larry! Got me excited!
 
#9
Great pictures. I had occasion to visit NH and managed a day of fishing. My success was not nearly as good as yours but it was a venture into nature and wonderful also. Thanks for posting.
 

biker_dd

Active Member
#10
Steve,
What a great trip. I grew up in New England, went to college in NH. I do miss it this time of year. It is beautiful in October, made all the more so by some very nice fish you landed! Money well spent on getting a guide, I'd say.

Thanks for sharing.
 
#11
My wife went to school in NH as well, and I grew up chasing LM bass in Massachusetts cranberry ponds and striper on the coast. It's awesome to go home to visit, but we're hitting our 6th year here in WA and I'm not sure there is a better place to be. Neither of us even consider moving back now, but it's a great place to have to go every year. Especially since it's becoming a fishing trip disguised as a family trip.
 
#12
Nice pics and trip report! I've spent alittle bit of time up in the White Mountains of New Hampshire and fishing and bumming around Vermont, my relatives live near Montpelier. Beautiful country up there, If I ever move back east it would hopefully be up there somewhere. Reminds me a lot of the PNW.
 

cabezon

Sculpin Enterprises
#14
Hi Steve,
I always like Atlantics. I spent two years chasing brookies and landlocked Atlantics on the West Branch of Penobscott in Maine when I live in Old Town, ME. Fall is just amazing in New England. Of course, you got in and out before all that water turned real hard..... Unless you have the coin to head to warmer climes in winter, the dark months there are time to tie flies. That's probably one fact that contributed to the development of elaborate Atlantic salmon flies - too much time in winter when one cannot fish.

Steve