Located in the northeast corner of Central Park, Harlem Meer is probably the best of several places in the park where fishing is allowed. The Meer is stocked with a wide variety of fish, including golden shiner, largemouth bass, pumpkinseed sunfish, bluegill sunfish, carp, and chain pickerel. So grab your tackle, head on over and spend a couple hours along the shore practicing your angling skills and taking in the scenery. If you do not own fishing equipment, no worries as bamboo fishing poles are available free of charge (if you have a valid picture I.D.) from mid-April to mid-October at The Charles A. Dana Discovery Center, located on the north shore of the Harlem Meer at 110th Street between Lenox Avenue and Fifth Avenue. The poles are issued Tuesday through Sunday, from 11 a.m.to 3:00 p.m.and must be returned by 4:00 p.m. Bait (corn kernels) is free with the poles.
All fishing in Central Park is catch-and-release meaning every fish must be put back in the water immediately. Returning fish to their habitat is essential to maintaining the ecological balance of the lake.
Also, please abide by the following rules:
i) Use hooks without barbs as barbed hooks are difficult to remove from fish and can injure them.
ii) Lead weights are not permitted as lead is poisonous and can kill wildlife. Use stainless steel or other non-toxic materials.
iii) To prevent birds from getting tangled or hurt, take all fishing line fragements and hooks when you leave. Do not leave any tackle behind.
Cache is a decon container which can hold small items. Bring a pen/pencil just in case. Please secure lid properly so as to ensure a watertight seal.
Good luck fishing and caching!