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The Best Fishing Spots on the Merrimack River Part 1: Bass

Updated: Mar 9, 2022

Based on 500+ hours of exploring, these are the best 5 access points from Tyngsborough to Haverhill

I didn't know about the Merrimack River until I moved to Lowell, but wow, I really lucked out. It's an amazing body of water which offers an abundance of fishing opportunities, as well as a variety of species that changes with location and season. That being said, as I tried to learn where to cast a line, I also discovered that public fishing access and information about where to fish, & for what was limited and outdated.

Not to be discouraged, I spent the next 18 months getting to know the river from Nashua, NH to Plum Island, MA hands-on, through at least 500 hours of trial & error - lots of error. I found dozens of great spots along the way, and caught 100s of fish including Northern Pike, Common Carp, Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, White Catfish, Bullheads, Crappies, Yellow Perch, Bluegills, Pumpkinseeds, Chubs, Shad, Pickerel, and Striped Bass.

I'm really excited to share my experiences with you in two posts. Here's my first one: Five of the Best Bass fishing spots from Tyngsborough to Amesbury. My second piece will focus on the best fishing locations for other species, including Northern Pike, Carp and Catfish.

  1. Vesper Country Club: Pull off on route 113, across from vesper country club – Park in the dirt pull-off spot and cross the street, there’s a small rock ledge that you can fish from; this is a great spot for smallmouth and largemouth.

  2. Riverfront Park, Tyngsborough: Very nice park with easy access to the river at the canoe launch; great spot for smallmouth, largemouth and calico (crappie).

  3. Chelmsford Boat Ramp: As you pull up to the boat ramp, notice the tributary on the right side of you, where this stream enters the Merrimack can be fantastic during the early summer as bait fish are in abundance and so are the predators - especially the smallmouth who love to hangout by the junction against the far tree line.

  4. New England Business Center, Andover Trail Access: Park in the top right corner closest to the river and walk through a small area of forest towards the water. You will see the trail and river; great spot for smallmouth, largemouth and bullheads.

  5. Pentucket Medical Center Express Care Riverwalk: Pull into the parking lot and facing the river, look for a spot at the farthest top right corner of the lot. It's by a loading dock, and there's another junction of waterways here - the Shawsheen river into the Merrimack. You can climb down to the riverside (be careful though) and there's an entire walkway along the Merrimack that provides great, hidden access - not the nicest, or easiest, but not widely known or used. Great largemouth, smallmouth, and striper/shad fishing during the right season.

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