Fishing in New York


With the overwhelming majority of New York residents living and working in large urban areas, it is no wonder that so many seek good fishing spots when on vacation. The lakes, rivers, and coastlines of New York offer incredible fishing. From the Finger Lakes to Lake Champlain, all along the Hudson and its tributaries, and even in New York City harbor, angling is a favorite pastime for those seeking relief from the stress and bustle of city life. For many, fishing camping in New York is the answer that rejuvenates their spirits and leaves a smile on the face. Any person 16 or older must purchase an angling license to fish anywhere in New York.

A row boat leans against a wooden pier in a lake surrounded by autumn trees under a bright blue sky

Fishing Spots in New York

Bowman Lake

One of the best places for kids to learn how to fish in New York is Bowman Lake, which is located in a beautiful landscape about 60 miles south of Syracuse. The lake is small, about 34 acres, with Bowman Lake State Park sitting beside it. The park offers 164 primitive campsites, and RVs of any type or size are welcome. A boat ramp is available for easy access to the water, and the lake is stocked each year with brook and rainbow trout of legal size. Other fish species that inhabit the lake include largemouth bass, pumpkinseed sunfish, bluegill, black crappie, and brown bullhead. 

Wellesley Island

Wellesley Island is located about 100 miles north of Syracuse in the Saint Lawrence River. Almost the entire island is taken up by Wellesley Island State Park, which offers 414 campsites and amenities such as flush toilets, bathhouses with hot showers, a boat ramp, a marina, and much more. The fishing along the banks of this island is a step up from that found at Bowman Lake, and the fish are a little savvier and more wily. Native fish species caught along the banks of Wellesley Island include smallmouth bass, perch, pike, and muskie.

Selkirk Shore on Lake Ontario

Selkirk Shore on Lake Ontario combines lake and river fishing, stepping up the game for people to learn new fishing techniques. Sitting on the shores of Lake Ontario and alongside three streams, including the Salmon River, Little Salmon River, and Grindstone Creek, the area is serviced by Selkirk Shores State Park. Located 42 miles north of Syracuse, the park provides 200 RV campsites with superb amenities like flush toilets and bathhouses with hot showers. Two boat ramps provide easy access to the water. During specific times of the year, anglers can expect to land brook trout, brown trout, steelhead, or Chinook salmon. 

Delta Lake

Delta Lake is a reservoir located near Rome, NY, about 45 miles east of Syracuse. It is serviced by Delta Lake State Park, which sits on a bluff projecting into the lake. The park provides 101 RV campsites with great views of the lake and the mountains beyond. With the park on a peninsula, bank fishing opportunities are ample, but a boat ramp is available for those wishing to get onto the water. Species available in this lake include brown trout, rainbow trout, brook trout, pike, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, brown bullhead, and perch.

Owasco Lake

To complete a novice angler’s training, visit Filmore Glen State Park on the shores of Owasco Lake. Located about 55 miles south of Syracuse in the Finger Lakes region, this park offers 60 primitive campsites. Hiking through the park reveals five beautiful waterfalls with immense pools beneath where the fishing is spotty. On the northern edge of the park is an inlet of Owasco Lake. The fishing in the lake is superior, with large populations of lake trout, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, bluegill, northern pike, walleye, and yellow perch. 

Where to Fish in New York

For New Yorkers, angling is a preferred method of stress relief. Knowing where to fish in New York is often a challenge, with ever-changing vacation schedules and the difficulty of coordinating family outings; it is essential to understand the dates when each fish species are available to the angler. That kind of information determines which location is best to visit when fishing New York. Lakes, rivers, and beachfront parks are open for the erstwhile angler, and hitting the best spot can mean the difference between an excited kid learning to fish and a very bored one. A catch, no matter how small, is always exciting for first-time anglers. 

Camping and Fishing in New York

Wherever you visit to go fishing in New York, make sure to check out the weather forecast. Fishing and camping in New York can be miserable if the rain pelts an angler all day, especially if that angler is new to the sport. RV camping provides a comfortable spot to rest between fishing outings.

Look up information on the state’s website for each campground and fishing location. There is a vast difference in amenities available between campgrounds. Select a suitable park, make a reservation, and enjoy the trip.

Always include warm clothing along with swimwear as the weather in New York is notorious for swift changes. Pack up your pots and pans, organize your tackle box, and make sure your bait is fresh. Before you head out on your trip, always check out our blog for all you need to know about fishing.

With an RV rental, your fishing trip will be a little more comfortable! After you’ve spent a long day fishing, grill up your catch right at your campsite. Then, retire inside to enjoy all the comforts of home onboard your RV. Plan your perfect fishing getaway with an RV rental from RVshare.