By Seth Fera-Schanes
The sun slips over the westside horizon and thousands of glowing lights begin to illuminate the Manhattan skyline.
Something of a spring and summer ritual has evolved over the past 5 years. I find myself in Central Park as evening sets in, about to start fishing in the middle of one of the world’s largest cities.
This is an activity I know very well having grown up fishing (but not necessarily catching) in Southern California. I hadn’t expected to move to New York City and right in the middle of Central Park have the opportunity to revisit one of my favorite pastimes.
Fishing in Central Park is allowed by the parks department. Anyone over the age of 15 must have a NY fishing license and for residents the annual fee of $25 is well worth the investment.
One of the more productive bodies of water in the city is The Lake, located around 77th street in Central Park. This is also the setting of the iconic row boats and Bethesda Fountain. It will hard to find a more idyllic place for a city dweller who also loves a bit of the outdoors.
For those interested in trying fishing, I have a couple insider tips for The Lake. Carp, bass, bluegill and crappie are all species you will find with some really sizable fish swimming around. On the westside of the lake is Ladies Pavilion. Using that as a starting point, work your way north and east and start fishing in some of the secluded coves. A simple crappie jig and a slow retrieve is all you need to produce a nice amount of crappie.
I have recently started a fishing group in the park so if you would like to meetup with some likeminded individuals, or just learn a little more about fishing in the city’s parks definitely feel free to join.