Best bets for trophy fishing

Find out which spots in Massachusetts have been known to produce the trophy fish of your dreams.

The Division of Fisheries and Wildlife (MassWildlife) uses prize catch records from the Freshwater Sportfishing Awards Program to create a list of water bodies where anglers consistently catch trophy fish.

What kind of fish are you looking for?

The best spots for trophy fishing depend on the kind of fish. Some species are easier to catch than others. Here's where we recommend you fish for different species:


  • Salmon: Best bets for trophy-sized landlocked Atlantic Salmon are the Wachusett and Quabbin Reservoirs (the only place these fish are found)
  • Shad: The Connecticut and Merrimack Rivers are your best bets for catching trophy-sized Shad. Keep in mind that these aren't the only places to try your luck.
  • Walleye: The Connecticut River is your best bet for catching Walleye.

Can’t make it to a place on the list? Don’t worry. Big fish lurk in lakes, rivers, and ponds all over the state, and not all anglers submit their catches.

Record fish

Wondering what the record is for the kind of fish you want to catch? Check out Massachusetts Freshwater Fish Records.

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