Fishing Season: no closed season for all species except for salmon. But there is a catch and release season on bass.

Merrimack River - NH

Fishing Outlook & Conditions

Water Temp:


David Kolesar's Tip of the Week

Try weighted streamers fished slow and near the bottom. Water is cooling off and bass activity is slowing down.

Directions open in app

Map of Merrimack River

Water Flow Data

5-Day Outlook as of 10/2/23

River level is currently good for fishing, boating and wading.

Techniques & Tips as of 10/2/23

Try weighted woolly buggers and other weighted flies.

Local Species Available no closed season for all species except for salmon. But there is a catch and release season on bass.

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    Smallmouth bass

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David Kolesar's Recommended Fly Patterns

"Must-have" fly fishing patterns in descending order of importance:

Name: Colors: Size(s):
May's Full Motion Crayfish N/A 2
Bead Head Woolly Bugger Streamer black 4
Tungsten Jig Bugger black/olive/tan 8
Sneaky Pete Popper chartreuse/white/bla 4
Black-nose Dace N/A 2
Black Ghost N/A 2
Lefty's Deceiver white/chartreuse 2
Clouser Minnow white/chartreuse 2
Wulff Patterns various 6
Deer hair bugs various 4

May's Full Motion Crayfish

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David Kolesar's Recommended Gear

Description: About Merrimack River

The upper Merrimack river from Franklin to Concord NH is a large freestone river formed by the confluence of the Pemigewasset and Winnipesaukee rivers in Franklin. The river continues flowing southeast ward through Nashua NH into Massachusetts before emptying into the Atlantic Ocean. The upper river has a good current flow with long stretches of calm water interrupted by shallow rapids. While trout are stocked in parts of the river this is primarily a smallmouth river.

Nearest Airport:

Manchester -Boston Regional Airport


alder fly hatch in mid-June

Best Time to Fish:

Afternoons when things warm. But fish when you can

Best Stretch:

Franklin to Concord

Best Access:

Boscawen Boat Launch. Shore access can be found at various locations along route 3 and a rail trail that crosses the boat launch in Boscawen.