New York's best fly fishing

We all know that finding the "where" involves a lot more than just picking any old spot and flinging a line in.  The Adirondacks are the home to over 30,000 miles of rivers and streams and 3,000 plus lakes. The West Branch Ausable in New York state's Adirondack Mountains is internationally known for it's fly fishing waters due to its steep and deep freestone river waters and plentiful pocket water sections. Fortunately, there are a number of resources designed to help "the compleat angler," whether you're looking for those pockets or faster, flowier stretches.

Our region offers diverse options for access points, creating an advantage over other locations for fly fishing. From easy pull-in locations where you can fish in a serene setting just steps from your car to trail options where you can hike a boat into the backcountry and fish a lake which holds native brook trout and lake trout, there are a range of amazing options.

People come from all over the world to fish the Ausable River in the Adirondacks, so why not you?

Pro tips

  • In the West Branch Ausable River the ideal fly rod weight is a 4 or 5.

  • Nymphing is very important when fly fishing in the Adirondacks with plentiful areas of pocket water.

  • Please be aware that many parts of the Ausable River are catch and release only.

  • The Whiteface Region was home to legendary fisherman Fran Betters. His famous Ausable Wulff dry fly is commonly used here. Others used are the Usual, Bomber, Ugly, and the Caddis.

  • Keep your eyes peeled for wildlife: On any given day you could spot a moose, bear, otter, or beavers, while the water fowl is abundant.

Two women in fly fishing gear. One stands in the river fishing, the other perches on a riverside rock.
A man fly fishes in waders in a river. The camera captures part of the dark underwater scene as well.
A grinning man kneeling in waders in a river holds a fly rod and net, while a cigar is clamped between his teeth.
A man wading in the Ausable river fly fishes with mountain peaks in the background

You will find an array of flies and fly shops serving the Whiteface Region, with experts on staff to talk gear, favorite spots, the latest water temps, and more. While you're planning your fly fishing trip, explore our waterways and fishing holes to help decide the best place for you to enjoy the awesomeness of nature.

Pledge to Love Your ADK

The waters of the area are truly special but we also need to work together to keep them that way. We hope that while you're here you'll follow the Seven Principles of Leave No Trace, as well as take the Love Your ADK Pledge.

Want to learn more about what's being done to care for the river? The Ausable River Association is the go-to organization that advocates, educates, and works to protect local waters. Thanks to them, there are wader washing stations throughout the area, as well as special events.



Get Close to Adirondack Fly Fishing


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