Mohawk River Fishing

Mohawk River offers anglers some amazing sport fishing for bass, perch, walleye, crappie, muskellunge, pike and trout. The best fishing is in the river’s 9.5-mile stretch between Crescent Dam and Lock 7 where angler can catch monster-size Northern pike. The average pike along this stretch of the Mohawk ranges from 25 to 35 inches, but they can grow to more than 40 inches.

mohawk river ny in the autumn

Mohawk River near Oneida New York during Autumn

The most abundant fish species in Mohawk River are bass, freshwater drum and northern pike, but you’ll find a good number of smallmouth bass and walleye throughout the river system. The upper reaches of the Mohawk north of Oneida offer between Delta Dam and Barge Canal provide opportunity to catch trophy trout Brown trout with an occasional Brook, Rainbow or Tiger trout.

Best Spots to fish the Mohawk River

Generally, fishing is most productive east of Schenectady downstream to the Hundson. The water along this stretch of the Mohawk River is deeper and fish life is more abundant. You’ll begin to find both largemouth bass and pike east of Schenectady.

Mohawk River NY fishing map

driving directions

The following are the top fishing spots along the Mohawk river from the Delta Dam in the West east to the Hudson River.

  • Upstream from St Johnsville near Barge Canals provides good fishing for smallmouth bass. Largemouths are less prevelant here.
  • From St Johnsville south to Schenectady expect to catch smallmouth bass, walleye and a few northern pike. As you get closer to Schenectady largemouth bass become more prevelant. Around Schenectady, fish the creek mouths to catch smallmouth bass.
  • For smallmouths, fish the sections between Locks 8 and 11. You’ll typically find good smallmouth fishing around the islands (Swart Island especially channel side) and around buoy marker R194.
  • East and west of Rexfordge Bridge you’ll find descent fishing for smallmouth bass. You can cross the bridge to fish both sides of the river from shore.
  • For giant northern pike and tiger muskellunge fish the 9.5 miles between Crescent Dam and Lock 7 (Cresent Pool). This section of the river also has abundant populations of largemouth bass, crappies and bluegills.
  • Below Crescent dam, smallmouth bass tend to be the most abundant game fish in the Mohawk river, along with carp and a few other species.
  • Mohawk River from St Johnsville to Canajoharie provides excellent bass fishing. Fish around creek mouths and island points.
  • For kayak or canoe fishing, I recommend Mohawk Landing Nature Preserve. It offers great fishing for bass, walleye, and panfish, and several convenient launch points.
  • For anglers without a boat, there is plenty of shore fishing. The Barge Canal locks along the Mohawk provide good access for shore fishing. Crescent Park and Vischer Ferry Lock 7 provide easy access for shore fishing.
  • From Delta Dam south to the Barge Canal provides fishing for abundant and nice size Brown trout. Brown trout are stocked by the Rome Fish Hatchery. You’ll also find a few Brook, Rainbow and Tiger trout along this section.Fly hatches consist primarily of caddis and mayflies—although mayflies are not abundant. During spring there are also hatches of Hendricksons and Sulphers, as well as Isonychias and Ephrons during late summmer and early fall.

    This section of the Mohawk River runs nearly parallel along the eastern side of the city of Rome, New York until it meet the Barge Canal making it very accessible for a day of fishing.

    While this section of the Mohawk is primarily a trout fishery, anglers will find occasional schools of migrating Walleye and a Northern Pike here and there. This species are more abundant down stream.

Anglers who fish from shore should be careful when entering the river. There are hidden currents around many of the locks. When fishing the Mohawk by boat obey all signs and remain in the marked channel. Once out of the channel the water can get shallow quickly.

Boaters must pay a toll to pass through the locks, but the fee isn’t much. If you plan going through any locks, you’ll need to call ahead to make sure there is an attendant on hand to let you back through on your return trip. Make sure to plan ahead.

When to fish the Mohawk

The Mohawk offers both warm and cold water fisheries depending on the time of the year. From the bottom of Delta Dam to the Barge Canal is primarily a cold water fishery that offers descent trout fishing spring through summer. During the late summer as temperatures rise, trout move to the bottom of the water column and fishing dies a down a little.

Downstream from the city of Rome where the Mohawk meets the Barge Canal, water temperatures get a bit warmer and bass replace trout. The best months to fish the Mohawk River are April, May, June, and September with the best fishing occuring during early spring and fall.

Best Baits

If you come here to fish for the bass or walleye, try jigging with 1/8 to 1/2 oz jigs along with imitation crayfish or plastic swimbaits. You can also try casting into a deep hole and retrieving your bait against the current as it touches the bottom now and then.

Jigs, swimbaits, jerkbaits, buzzbaits and plugs will work for catching Pike.

Mohawk River Fish Species

Mohawk River boat ramps:

The following boat ramps provide access to Mohawk River.

Van Schaick Island Marina Boat Ramp
2 South Delaware Avenue Cohoes, NY 5182372681

Capital District Marina Boat Ramp
17 Jackson Avenue Cohoes, NY 518-237-3442

Van Schaick Island Marina Boat Ramp
398 Railroad Dr Cohoes, NY

Lock 7 Boat Launch
One Niskayuna Circle, Niskayuna, NY 12309
(518) 386-4504

Freemans Bridge Boat Launch
Schenectady, NY 12302

Mohawk River Canoe/Kayak Access
219 Towpath Rd, Clifton Park, NY 12065

Clamsteam Road Boat Launch
Clifton Park, NY 12065

Town of Colonie Park Boat Launch
22 N Schermerhorn Rd, Cohoes, NY 12047

Flightlock Rd Boat Launch
Flightlock Rd, Waterford, NY 12188
(302) 747-0403

Waterford Boat Launch
Front & First St, Waterford NY 12188
(518) 209-1063