Regional Reports-East

Lake Champlain

In early summer on Lake Champlain, landlocked salmon and brown trout hit sewn bait and smelt-imitating spoons and flies trolled at mid-depths and shallower. Go deep for giant lake trout. The main lake, from Chimney Point in Addison to the bays near Burlington, produces most of the best salmon and trout catches. You can also tackle world-class smallmouth and largemouth bass fisheries. Smallmouths are numerous on the edges of the main lake where hard bottom prevails, particularly along points, reefs and rocky shorelines. Crayfish, stickbaits and soft-plastic jigs work well. The largemouths prefer the soft bottom and weed beds found in the southern end of the lake below Chimney Point, in Mallets Bay just north of Burlington and in the northern end near the islands and in Missisquoi Bay in Swanton. Floating plugs and jigged plastic baits, along with natural bait, work well. Northern pike are found in the same areas as largemouths and hit big swimming minnow imitations and flashy wobbling spoons. State-run access sites and boat ramps are numerous (see sidebar below). A Vermont license is good only to the deepwater line of the entire lake. A New York license is needed on the western side. Contact: Vermont Fish and Wildlife (103 South Main St., 10 South, Waterbury, VT 05671-0501; 802-241-3700).