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Shoreline Fishing in Coastal State Parks

Fishing Regulations Icon Connecticut Fishing

Shoreline Fishing in Coastal State Parks

During regular hours, a vehicle parking fee is required to enter most of the state parks. Parking fees are collected from 8 a.m.–6:30 p.m. on weekends and holidays, and 8 a.m.–6:30 p.m. during the week except at state parks marked with an asterisk. Late day fees (4 p.m.–6:30 p.m. any day) for Harkness, Hammonasset, Rocky Neck and Sherwood Island are $6 for residents and $7 for non-residents. For more information please see the coastal state parks website: www.ct.gov/deep/stateparks.

* Parking Fees subject to change. Camping

Night Fishing Rules

Anglers entering a park by vehicle must obtain a vehicle permit in order to park and fish. No vehicle will be admitted into the day-use area of the park from 6:30 a.m.–8 a.m. Individuals entering the park without a vehicle do not require a permit, but must possess fishing tackle (rod & reel, bait, light, etc.) and engage in fishing.

Bluff Point State Park & Coastal Reserve, Groton

Fishing is allowed 24 hrs.

  • Fish to be caught: Winter flounder and snapper bluefish can be caught at Poquonnock Cove. Bluefish, striped bass, hickory shad, summer flounder, little tunny, blue crab, striped sea robin and tautog can be caught from the beach.
  • Directions: I-95, Exit 88 to Route 117 south, right onto Route 1, left onto Depot Road. Follow to end.
  • Parking Fees: None.

Fort Trumbull State Park, New London

Fishing access (handicapped accessible), 24 hour pedestrian access from Riverfront Walk to Fishing Pier on the Thames River.

  • Fish to be caught: Bluefish, striped bass, summer flounder, hickory shad, scup, tautog, winter flounder, weakfish, blue crab, striped sea robin and black sea bass.
  • Directions: I-95N, Exit 83 (Huntington Street). I-95S, Exit 84.
  • Parking Fees: None. Telephone: 860-444-7591.

Ferry Landing State Park, Old Lyme

Fishing access (handicapped accessible) consists of a fenced bulkhead area and a fishing/crabbing boardwalk. Parking is available inside the park after hours for fishing/crabbing only.

  • Fish to be caught: Bluefish, striped bass, summer flounder, catfish, American eel, hickory shad, blue crab, striped sea robin and white perch.
  • Directions: I-95, Exit 70 to Route 156. After ¼ mile make a right onto Ferry Road. Follow to end. Telephone: 860-434-6043.
  • Parking Fees: None.

Hammonasset Beach State Park, Madison

Fishing is allowed only at the Meigs Point Jetty (south end) and at West Beach Jetty during the peak season from 8 a.m. to sunset. Night fishing is permitted along the entire beach (2 miles). The entire beach (2 miles) is not open to night fishing during the off-season (October–May).

  • Fish to be caught: Tautog, winter flounder, bluefish, summer flounder, scup, weakfish, striped bass, blue crab, striped sea robin and black sea bass.
  • Directions: I-95, Exit 62. Telephone: 203-245-2785.
  • Parking Fees*
    • Weekdays: resident—$9.00, non-resident—$15.00
    • Weekend/Holiday: resident—$13.00, non-resident—$22.00

Harkness Memorial State Park, Waterford

Fishing is allowed along the beach. No swimming allowed.

  • Fish to be caught: Tautog, bluefish, striped bass and scup (porgy) can be caught off the rocky point, blue crab, striped sea robin and summer flounder off the beach.
  • Directions: I-95, Exit 75. Take Route 1 North to Avery Lane on right. Follow Avery Lane to Route 213. Follow Route 213 to the park. Telephone: 860-443-5725.
  • Parking Fees*
    • Weekdays: resident—$6.00, non-resident—$10.00
    • Weekend/Holiday: resident—$9.00, non-resident—$15.00
    • After 4pm any day: resident—$6.00, non-resident— $7.00

Rocky Neck State Park, Niantic

Fishing is allowed on the jetty year round. The entire beach and jetty is open to fishing during the off-season. Jetty located on right side of beach. Please note: When no night rangers are on staff and on major holiday weekends, no vehicles are permitted in park for night fishing.

  • Fish to be caught: Tautog, winter flounder, bluefish, striped bass, scup (porgy), blue crab, striped sea robin and black sea bass can be caught off the jetty. Crabbing is allowed at designated areas.
  • Directions: I-95, Exit 72 to Route 156. Telephone: 860-739-5471.
  • Parking Fees*
    • Weekdays: resident—$9.00, non-resident—$15.00
    • Weekend/Holiday: resident—$13.00, non-resident—$22.00

Sherwood Island State Park, Westport

Fishing is allowed at Sherwood Point, East and West Jetty during the open season (April 15–Sept. 30). The entire beach is open to fishing during the off-season from 8 a.m. to sunset only.

  • Fish to be caught: Tautog, bluefish, scup, summer flounder, winter flounder, blue crab, striped sea robin and striped bass can be caught off Sherwood Point.
  • Directions: I-95, Exit 18. Telephone: 203-226-6983.
  • Parking Fees*
    • Weekdays: resident—$9.00, non-resident—$15.00
    • Weekend/Holiday: resident—$13.00, non-resident—$22.00

Silver Sands State Park
After Hours Fishing Parking/Charles Island, Milford

Fishing is open throughout the area including the sand spit which extends about a mile from the mainland to Charles Island. Caution is advised when fishing or walking the Tombolo (sand bar). Swift tidal currents during a flood tide can make passage dangerous and persons unfamiliar with the area may be stranded on Charles Island until low tide.

  • Fish to be caught: Bluefish, striped bass, summer flounder, hickory shad, blue crab, striped sea robin and weakfish.
  • Directions: I-95, Exit 35. Follow Schoolhouse Road south to Route 1 (Bridgeport Avenue). Turn left onto Route 1 then right at first light (Silver Sands Park Way). Follow Park Way and turn left at next light (Meadowside Road). Follow Meadowside 0.7 mile and turn right at Robert Treat Parkway which then becomes Surf Avenue. Follow Surf Avenue to end at East Broadway and turn right. The After Hours Fishing Parking Lot is at the end of East Broadway.
  • Hiking the Tombola (Sand Bar) while it is covered in water is prohibited.
  • Parking Fees: None.

Shoreline Fishing
& Property Rights

CT Coastal Management Program

Connecticut’s intertidal shore belongs to the people. Under the common law public trust doctrine, the public may freely use land and waters waterward of the mean high water line to fish. The public trust area includes beaches, rocky shores and open waters along tidal and navigable waters. Fishing in the public trust area is not trespassing; the DEEP encourages anglers to enjoy their rights to use the public trust lands for fishing. However, anglers should also respect the rights of adjacent landowners by not crossing private property without permission and by leaving the shoreline clean and litter free.