Millers River Massachusetts
Copyright 2016 James Marsh
Fly Fishing Millers River Massachusetts
The Millers River is one of the best, least known streams
in the state of Massachusetts. Years ago, it was
considered the best trout stream in Massachusetts and
then Manufacturer's pollution took its toll. But, that was
years ago! The river is now back in good shape. There
are still a very few problems and in those areas the state
has established "catch and release, artificial lure and
flies only" areas. It has rainbow trout and some brown
trout with plenty of holdovers.
The Millers River is a tributary of the Connecticut River.
It flows from its beginning from lakes in the Ashburnham
Area for about 50 miles. There's over forty miles of
quality trout fishing. The river flows through several
towns but it also has some secluded sections.
The remote area has a catch and release section that
runs from a bridge at South Ralston downstream to the
Starret Factory Dam at the East end of the town of
Athol. This flows with fast water running through land
that is protected and hasn't been developed. There's a
dirt road that has been turned into a hiking trail that runs
the length of this area along the river. Fly fishing the
Millers River in this section requires some hiking but you
can fish anywhere you like in an undeveloped area
that's rare in Southern New England.
The other catch and release area runs from the
Wendell/Erving Road Bridge in the town of Orange
downstream to the dam in Erwin Center. There's a
Wildlife Management Area ROW along the river in the
form of a dirt road that accesses this section.
Another section of river is in the Birch Hill Wildlife
Management Area near Wenchdon. Remember, the two
sections mentioned above are just the two catch and
release sections of the river. There are many more
access points along the entire length of the river.
The Tully River is a main tributary of Millers River and is
within itself a good trout fishery. It's confluence is just
west of Athol Center. The Tully River's main stem is very
short and is formed from the confluence of its West and
East Branches. This stream has stocked brown and
rainbow trout with plenty of holdovers. There are native
brook trout in its headwaters. Both branches offer good
fishing opportunities and have plenty of easy access.
There are at least ten other small tributary streams that
are stocked by the state. Fly fishing the Millers River can
be a real adventure if you chose your spots carefully.
Fly Fishing Gear, Tackle and Trout Flies
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Photo Courtesy Steven Lamb
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Recommended Tackle & Gear
4, 5 or 6 weight
Dry fly: 9 ft., 5 or 6X Nymphing: 71/2 ft.,
3 or 4X, Streamers 0-2X
Dry fly: 5 or 6X, Nymphing: 3 or 4X,
Best Fly Rods:
Perfect Fly Supreme Four, Superb Five
or Ultimate Six
For 4/5/6 fly line
Fly Floatants and Misc Items:
Floatants, KISS Strike Indicators
Tools & Accessories:
Nippers, forceps, retractors, etc.