First Connecticut Lake, the largest of the four numbered Connecticut Lakes, is one of Pittsburg’s special places. It’s a scenic wonder with a full array of recreational facilities. And it’s right across Route 3 from the Lopstick office. If you drive south a half mile, you will find First Lake’s family beach and one of its three boat ramps.
In summer, children frolic in a safe, shallow beach area and stronger swimmers head out to the nearby island. Families grill burgers and picnic at a variety of spots along the shore and dogs happily wag their tails as they chase balls and paddle around with family. Picnic in sun or shade. Canoe, kayak or water ski. Check with Lopstick staff for a variety of boat rentals. Bathrooms are handy and well maintained. You’ll find parking, a boat ramp, and dramatic views. Only 15 percent of the shoreline is developed.
First Lake is glacial, 163 feet at its deepest point and just seven scenic miles north of the village of Pittsburg. In winter, anglers fish for lake trout and perch from January 1 through March 31. Ice-in and ice-out dates vary but usually fall between late December and mid-April.
Dams are adjusted in the normal course of water level management practices, causing occasional rapid changes in water levels.
Surface Elevation 1.638 feet
Area 4.8 square miles
Lenght 5.3 miles
Width 2.7 miles
Inflow Connecticut River
Outflow First Lake Dam/Connecticut River
Location Seven miles north of Pittsburg Village on Route 3
GPS 45°5′37″N 71°14′52″W
Average Depth 56 feet
Maximum Depth 163 feet
Anglers come to the area to fish the deep waters for lake trout and salmon in warmer months and to fish for cusk and lake trout in winter. First Lake is best fished by boat.
Fish for lake trout from January 1 until September 30. The daily limit is two fish, minimum length 18 inches.
The daily limit for landlocked salmon from April 1 until September 30 is two fish, with a minimum length 15 inches.
The overall limit for lake trout and salmon is 2 fish (2 lake trout or 2 salmon, or 1 of each).
Ice fishing is permitted on First Lake from January 1 through March 31. Only two trap lines are permitted per angler.
Daily bag limit for lake trout is 2 fish and the minimum length is 18 inches. There is no length minimum or daily limit for cusk.
First Lake has a developed launch near the dam on US Route 3. You’ll find ample parking for vehicles and trailers, as well as a beach, restrooms, picnic tables.
Just north of the dam there is also a small, gravel launch near Stewart Young Road. Launch smaller boats and water crafts such as kayaks and canoes here. Parking is limited.
At the end of Camp Otter Road you’ll find a gravel launch. Parking is limited.