Saturday, April 19, 2014

Accessible Fishing in Massachusetts

Spring is here and the fish are biting! For those who seek to relax with a line in the water, there are   many accessible locations for fishing as well as a fantastic year round array of fishing programs in Massachusetts.

In DCR's state parks, wheelchair accessible fishing docks can be found at a variety of locations including Carson Beach and Castle Island (Boston), the Cape Cod Canal (Sandwich), Mt. Tom State Reservation (Holyoke), DAR State Forest (Goshen),  and Dunn State Park (Gardner). Other locations with level ground or good beach access are Houghton's Pond (Milton), Hampton Ponds (Westfield), Farnum's Crossing (Cheshire) and Berry Pond (Pittsfield).

Massachusetts Division of Fish and Wildlife's Angler Education Program offers introductory clinics, fishing derbies and festivals, fly tying courses and more throughout the state. May and June are the peak season, although events are offered year round. While many programs are family oriented, coming up on May 17 in Marlboro is a Learn-to-Fish event for disabled veterans only. Click here for their calendar! In addition to traditional fishing equipment, the Angler Education Program has adaptive fishing gear for those with disabilities.

There are adaptive fishing products available for those who have limited or no grip, one arm only,  and difficulty casting, as well as fishing rod holders that fit on wheelchairs or attach to the body. You can find them all at Access to Recreation or Adaptive Outdoorsman.

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