American Fly Fishing

A Multi-Species Mecca within City Limits
By Tom Migdalski

New Haven Harbor is a quintessential juxtaposition of wildness and civilization. There’s something special about hooking a wily predator alongside one of the busiest traffic and commercial hubs in the Northeast. This fishing thrill occurs all season long in the waters surrounding New Haven, Connecticut, where baitfish attract bluefish and striped bass almost within casting distance of oil tankers, Interstate 95, and bustling city life. The fishery also features weakfish, false albacore, and other species, not to mention one of the biggest and oldest oystering industries in New England.

            New Haven Harbor is a triangular, 4-mile-long bay and the second-largest commercial port in Connecticut. The bay’s central location on northern Long Island Sound makes it appealing and accessible to many anglers….the fishing can be excellent even deep within the harbor and inland from the interstates.

The harbor is readily accessible from shore or boat. And it’s a reasonable run from multiple launches, including those in Milford, West Haven, East Haven, and Branford. However, unlike most of the rest of the Connecticut shoreline, which is largely privately owned, New Haven Harbor offers miles of beach and coastal access for land-based casters, and that’s its strongest point.