Bass season opening this Saturday
ESSEX — Vermont’s bass fishing season kicks off on Saturday, June 8, and anglers throughout the state are eager to hit their favorite body of water in search of fun and exciting fishing adventures for largemouth and smallmouth bass.
“Anglers in Vermont are fortunate to have world-class bass fishing for both species right in their backyard,” said Bernie Pientka, fisheries biologist with Vermont Fish & Wildlife. “From big-water angling on lakes like Champlain, Bomoseen and Memphremagog and the Connecticut River, to hundreds of smaller, untapped ponds and reservoirs, Vermont is loaded with great bass fishing for anglers of all ages.”
Vermont’s general bass season opens each year on the second Saturday in June and extends through the last day of November. Outside of those dates, anglers can fish for bass on open water on a catch-and-release basis with artificial lures and flies only on waters that are not seasonally closed.
“One unique thing about bass fishing in Vermont, compared to many other states, is the sheer amount of quality, unpressured fish,” said Pientka. “You may find some larger fish in the southern and western parts of the country where growing seasons are longer, but for numbers of solid, two to four-pound bass that haven’t seen much fishing pressure, a lot of Vermont waterbodies are tough to beat.”
Vermont’s bass fishing has received national attention in a variety of fishing publications in recent years, and bass-rich Lake Champlain has become a favorite of touring bass professionals.
The World Fishing Network recently named Lake Champlain one of the seven best smallmouth bass lakes in North America. The renowned fishing media outlet went on to characterize Lake Champlain as “perhaps the best lake in all of North America for both quality largemouth and smallmouth bass.”
“There’s no question that Lake Champlain hosts a very special bass fishery, probably one of the best in the world,” said Pientka. “However, there are lots of other waterbodies that might not get the attention, but can be just as good, simply because those bass populations don’t get much fishing pressure.”
Bass fishing in Vermont is a fun outdoor activity that can be enjoyed by adults and kids alike, regardless of skill level, and can also be a great source of food for the table.
“Bass fishing is a great way to get out and enjoy Vermont’s great outdoors and nothing can beat a tasty meal of fresh, locally-caught fish,” Pientka said.
Pientka noted that smaller, younger bass, which are also much more abundant, are generally better eating compared to bigger, older fish.
Anglers heading out on the water to fish for bass this season should be sure to check fishing regulations, including harvest and length limits applicable to the waters they are fishing. Vermont’s fishing regulations can be found in the 2019 Vermont Fishing Guide & Regulations available at district offices and license agents, or online at vtfishandwildlife.com. Licenses also are available on the website.
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