Best Striped Bass Fishing in New York

Striped bass chasing baitfish in the waters off New York
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New York offers some of the finest striped bass fishing in the Northeast, particularly known for its robust fishery that attracts anglers from across the country. Your quest for the best striped bass fishing experience can be thoroughly rewarding as you tap into the extensive migration routes of these sought-after fish. The waters off New York are bustling with striped bass activity, especially during peak seasons when they move in large numbers Hotspots like Jamaica Bay offer a prime fishing spot with an abundance of bait and diverse structure that striped bass favor. Shore-based and boat fishing opportunities abound, taking your striped bass fishing adventure through New York’s dynamic marine habitats. Whether you prefer surfcasting or heading out on a guided charter, you’ll discover that the Empire State’s waters are ripe for the pursuit of this iconic game fish.

Montauk Point

Montauk Point, located at the eastern tip of Long Island, is renowned for being a premier destination for striped bass fishing. Considered by many anglers as one of the top locations in the nation, Montauk offers a robust fishing experience with an abundance of striped bass, especially during the spring and fall migrations.

Notable Fishing Methods:

  • Shore Fishing: Utilize surfcasting techniques from the beaches or rocks available around Montauk Point.
  • Charter Fishing: Experienced captains can guide you to the best offshore spots.

Target Species:

  • Striped Bass: Montauk’s most sought-after catch.
  • Other Fish: Bluefish, sharks, tuna, sea bass, cod, and haddock.

When planning your fishing trip, it’s essential to consider the state regulations and seasons to ensure a responsible and successful outing.

Essential Gear:

  • Rod and Reel: A sturdy surfcasting rod and a reel capable of handling large fish
  • Line: Braided line for better casting and strength
  • Lures: Various lures including plugs, spoons, and soft plastics mimic the baitfish in the area
  • Bait: Live or fresh bait such as eels or bunker

Remember to check with local bait and tackle shops for the most current information on bait selection and fishing hotspots. Fishing in Montauk Point is not just about the catch, it’s about embracing the rich fishing tradition of the area.

The Hudson River

When you’re targeting striped bass in New York, the Hudson River offers a premier fishing experience. This estuarial habitat runs through the state, receiving stripers as they migrate north from the Atlantic Ocean each spring.


  • Opens: April 1
  • Closes: November 30

Slot Limits (north of the George Washington Bridge):

  • Minimum: 18 inches
  • Maximum: 28 inches

Keep up-to-date with any slot limit changes that might occur, as regulations can change to ensure sustainable fishing practices.

Fishing Locations:

  • Bob Shepard Highland Landing Park (Highland, NY):
    • Notable for waterfront access
    • Suitable for shore fishing
  • Esopus Flats to Malden area:
    • Known for productive hot spots
    • Accessed via local charters for an optimized experience

Be prepared for the possibility of encountering stripers weighing upwards of 50 pounds during the peak season in spring. The areas around Newburgh and Catskill are particularly noteworthy for their striper populations and the quality of the fish that can be found.


  • A sturdy rod and reel
  • Heavy test line recommended
  • Variety of lures and live bait to adapt to changing conditions

Shinnecock Inlet

Shinnecock Inlet offers a prime location for striped bass fishing in New York, with its connection between Shinnecock Bay and the ocean. The inlet boasts an entrance channel that is approximately 10 feet deep and 200 feet wide, ensuring accessibility for a variety of fishing vessels.

Key Details of the Inlet:

  • Length: Roughly 0.7 miles
  • Width: About 300 yards
  • Average Depth: Ranges from 20 to 40 feet to the bottom

The area is well-known for its productive fishing conditions, especially during the striped bass migration periods in the spring and fall. As you fish along Shinnecock Inlet, you’ll observe large flat boulders that line both the east and west sides. These boulders not only help prevent erosion but also provide an ideal habitat for the baitfish that striped bass prey on.

Tips for Successful Striped Bass Fishing:

  • Look for structures and variations in the bottom topography where bass may congregate.
  • Consider the tidal movements, as incoming or outgoing tides can influence bass activity.
  • Live bait such as eels can be particularly effective in this environment.

Seasonal Movements: During the migratory seasons of April, May, and then again in the fall, you can particularly capitalize on the influx of striped bass. Pay attention to local fishing reports to determine the best times to visit the inlet for a successful fishing experience.

Jones Beach State Park

When you’re targeting striped bass in New York, Jones Beach State Park offers a prime location. Situated on Western Long Island, it provides accessible surfcasting opportunities without the need to travel far.

You’ll find multiple “Fields” at Jones Beach, each with its own parking area. This allows you to choose a spot that suits your fishing preferences.

Fishing Regulations
Ensure you’re aware of the area-specific rules before casting your line. Regulations can change, so it’s essential to check for the most current information to remain in compliance.

Species Availability
While stripers are a sought-after catch here, the park’s waters are also home to flounder, fluke, and bluefish. The prime time for striped bass action typically begins in May.

  • Night/Sportfishing Permit: With a State Park Night/Sportfishing Permit, night tides fishing becomes an option for you. This annual permit costs around $25 and expands your fishing time into the night hours, sometimes offering encounters with other species, such as weakfish.

Tackle Shops
In the vicinity, tackle shops cater to your needs with a wide range of striper plugs and lures. Having the right gear is crucial, and local shops are equipped to provide you with the latest and most effective tackle.

Here’s a quick reference:

Parking AreasMultiple “Fields”
Regulations CheckRequired Before Fishing
Permit AvailabilityState Park Night/Sportfishing
Species PresentStripers, Flounder, Fluke, Blues

Arrive prepared, respect the park’s guidelines, and enjoy the rewarding experience of striper fishing at Jones Beach State Park.

East River

The East River in New York City is a prime location for striped bass fishing, especially noteworthy for nighttime anglers. The waters here offer a unique urban fishing experience, with the backdrop of the city skyline.

Fishing Spots: Your best bet for catching stripers in the East River is likely in the areas with plenty of natural structure and water movement such as near bridge pilings, eddies, and piers. Fish tend to flock to areas where bait is plentiful, so keep an eye out for diving birds and surface water activity that may indicate the presence of baitfish.

Best Times: The striped bass migration typically brings these fish into New York waters in significant numbers. Your chances are higher during the spring and fall migrations. Striped bass are known to be particularly active during the changing tides; therefore, planning your fishing trip around high or low tide can improve your success rate.

Regulations: Be aware of the state regulations on size and bag limits to ensure that you are fishing responsibly. Moreover, strict advisories are in place when it comes to consumption due to contaminants present in the waters – catch and release is generally practiced for striped bass in the East River.

Essential Gear:

  • Rod and Reel: A medium-heavy rod with a strong reel is suitable.
  • Lures: Surface poppers, swimming plugs, and soft plastics are effective.
  • Bait: Live eels or bunker can be used to entice stripers.

Remember, safety first: The East River can have strong currents and boat traffic; always take the necessary precautions when fishing in these urban waters.

South Shore Beaches

New York’s South Shore is a prime destination for striped bass fishing. You have a variety of beaches to choose from, each with its own unique advantages for shore angling.

  • Jones Beach State Park: With its easy access and ample facilities, you’re likely to have a successful outing here. The fishing station on the park makes bait and tackle easily available.
  • Fire Island: It offers a long barrier island environment, perfect for surf fishing. Look for spots where baitfish are abundant, as stripers frequently hunt in these areas.
  • Robert Moses State Park: This park provides both surf fishing opportunities and a more serene environment. The less crowded beaches can be an advantage when casting for striped bass.

When preparing for your fishing adventure on the South Shore, consider these tips:

  • Early morning or late evening tend to be the most productive times for striped bass fishing.
  • Pay attention to tide cycles and baitfish movements, since striped bass often follow these patterns.

Jamaica Bay

Jamaica Bay, located in Queens, New York, is renowned for its striped bass fishing. As you plan your fishing trips, consider that this bay is not just a prime destination, but a unique ecosystem merging urban and natural environments.

Season: During April and May, the bay truly comes alive. This period is peak season for striped bass, and you will find the waters bustling with anglers seeking the thrill of reeling in a big one.

Access: Public access is readily available for you, with Jamaica Bay offering excellent spots for both shore and kayak fishing. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Shore Fishing: Available along the numerous piers and banks.
  • Kayak Fishing: A favored mode to navigate and fish the diverse structure and flats.

Fish Diversity: While striped bass hold the spotlight, you can also encounter other species like bluefish, weakfish, and fluke. It’s common to find trophy-sized fish among these varieties, adding to the challenge and excitement.

Events: For kayaking enthusiasts, the bay hosts the Jamaica Bay Kayak Fishing Classic, an event not to be missed.

Great South Bay

The Great South Bay offers a prime location for striped bass fishing in New York. As a seasoned or novice angler, you’ll find that this vast estuary, located between Long Island and Fire Island, provides a diverse habitat favored by striped bass.

Seasonal Movement:

  • Spring: The bass migration kicks off, bringing in hungry fish.
  • Summer: Resident bass provide steady action.
  • Fall: Known for the fall run, as bass chase baitfish.

Techniques and Tackle:

  • Surfcasting: Popular from the beaches of Fire Island Inlet.
  • Boat Fishing: Offers access to deeper waters and structure where bass congregate.

Key Areas:

  • Fire Island Inlet: Strategic spot for the beginning or end of your fishing trip.
  • Nearby Structures: Such as docks, bridges, and drop-offs, are hotspots for striped bass.

Be mindful of the tides, as they heavily influence striped bass behavior. Your best chances are often on incoming or outgoing tides when bass actively feed.

Local Regulations:

  • Always check current size and bag limits.
  • A fishing permit is required for saltwater fishing in New York.

The Great South Bay’s proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and its variety of fishing environments make it a notable striped bass fishing destination. Preparation and patience will be your allies here, enhancing your chances for a successful and enjoyable experience.

Coney Island

Coney Island, a bustling New York beachfront known for its amusement parks, is also a revered spot for striped bass fishing. Your experience can be enriched with the knowledge of where and how to fish in these waters.

Where to Fish:

  • Brighton Beach Pier: Stretching over 1,000 feet, this pier is a magnet for striped bass, especially during the spring run. It offers you an accessible fishing location with the possibility of catching a variety of saltwater species.
  • Rockaway Inlet: Situated where the Atlantic Ocean meets Jamaica Bay, the Rockaway Inlet provides an excellent chance for you to target striped bass, where they commonly feed and migrate.

Tips for Success:

  • Time Your Fishing: Striped bass are more active during dawn and dusk. Planning your fishing trips during these times increases your chances of a catch.
  • Gear Up Appropriately: Utilize a sturdy rod, with a preference for heavier lines to handle the potential size of stripers in these waters.

Regulations to Keep in Mind:
New York enforces specific regulations to protect striped bass populations.

  • Catch Limits: Heed the daily limits for the number of fish you can keep.
  • Seasonal Restrictions: Be aware of state water boundaries and seasonal timings to fish responsibly.

By respecting these guidelines and leveraging the diverse fishing spots of Coney Island, you stand a great chance of a rewarding striped bass fishing experience.

Raritan Bay

Raritan Bay is a notable fishing hotspot for striped bass, especially during the peak seasons. Situated between New York and New Jersey, this area offers fertile fishing grounds that attract anglers from all around.

Best Time to Fish:

  • Spring: The spring run typically brings in large numbers of striped bass migrating through the bay.
  • Fall: Considered one of the best times, with frequent reports of successful outings.

Charter Options:

  • A variety of charters operate in the area, offering specialized trips targeting striped bass.
  • Vessels range from smaller boats perfect for close-knit groups to larger ones that can accommodate more anglers.

Fishing Techniques:

  • Trolling: Effective for covering a lot of water.
  • Live-lining Bait: Popular for attracting larger stripers.
  • Jigging: Provides an enjoyable, hands-on experience.

Local Insight:

  • Anglers often mention the prime locations along the bay where striped bass are abundant.
  • Using a fish finder and VHF radio technology is common to ensure effective and safe fishing trips.

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