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Lowell Holly, MA Fishing: A Cape Cod Bay Hidden Gem

Lowell Holly, MA Fishing: A Cape Cod Bay Hidden Gem
Published: Wednesday, January 5th, 2022
Updated on: Monday, January 10th, 2022

Found just a couple of hours south of Boston lies Lowell Holly and its surrounding region, packed with beautiful state parks and rural lodgings. The area is situated near Sandwich, Massachusetts, one of the oldest towns in the Cape Cod Bay area, first inhabited by Native Americans for thousands of years before the arrival of European immigrants, officially being colonized in 1637. In the decades since, Sandwich became known for its agricultural lands and fisheries, which then shifted during the industrial revolution, with glassware factories being commonplace in the area. Throughout the years, the community has kept many of its historical landmarks well-preserved, opening the way for the booming tourism industry. 

Lowell Holly got its name from the former president of Harvard University, Abott Lowell, who planted 250 American Holly trees. The area is considered a well-known hiking trail and is beautifully lined up with trees and patches of mountain laurel, rosebay, and catawba rhododendrons. Though often overshadowed by the more popular Cape Cod Bay,  Lowell Holly’s three nearby ponds, Mashpee, Wakeby, and Santuit ponds, are well-stocked and open for fishing and swimming. Lowell Holly, a tourist attraction today, has many places to go around for those looking to have a good time. Patrons of the arts will find the Cahoon Museum of American Art and the Cotuit Center for the Arts just a stone’s throw away from each other. Old Breweries like the Naukabout Brewery and Taproom are also open to the public. Finally, those looking to enjoy the scenic landscape of classic New England can enjoy while playing a few rounds of golf as The Ridge, Southport, and Willowbend Country Club golf courses are within an hour’s drive. 

Lowell Holly Fishing 

fishing rod on a boat at sunset

Settlers who first arrived in America were gifted with this beautiful agricultural site. More so than the great lands they now owned, the area was endowed with multiple ponds and lakes for consistent irrigation. Today, these bodies of water are used for recreational purposes, mainly fishing.  Lowell Holly is blessed with its three well-stocked ponds Mashpee, Wakeby, and Santuit. Wakeby to the north and Mashpee below it are two connected ponds covering around 737 acres. Both ponds also feed water in the nearby Mashpee River. Their depths can vary from 30 to 95 feet, with their bottom composition being made out of the gravel. Its surrounding areas are dotted with camping sites, townhouses, and beaches. There, anglers will be able to catch brook, brown, and rainbow trout, as well as populations of bass (largemouth and smallmouth), catfish (white catfish and brown bullhead), perch (yellow and white), and many more. Sea-dwelling herring also migrate to the ponds via the Mashpee River. 

Just across the Mashpee and Wakeby is Santuit Pond, a 176-acre great pond. Compared to the two ponds beside it, the Santuit Pond’s water is comparatively shallow, averaging only 6.5 feet and a maximum11 feet. The great pond is also predominantly composed of sand with irregular patches of rubble and muck found across it. The pond is also fed by River Herring and the Santuit River beyond that. There is much fish to catch in its wide 176-acre area, including largemouth bass, pumpkinseed, chain pickerel, golden shiner, brown bullhead, white and yellow perch, American eel, and whiter sucker. There’s also a chance for Santuit pond’s water to freeze in winter, making it an ideal spot for ice fishing.  Should the right conditions be met, perch, bass, and trout can be found during the holiday season. Anglers attempting fish during this time of the year should prepare the appropriate gear. Winter fishing is a unique yet potentially dangerous form of fishing.

Anglers looking for a more comprehensive selection of fish to catch should look into fishing in Cape Cod Bay.  There, anglers will be able to try different forms of fishing, including kayak fishing, shoreline fishing, and even bottom fishing in the deeper sections of the bay. With its 65-miles of seawater, stretching from Marshland to Provincetown, there are numerous flats, bays, and sounds for every angler wishing to show off their skills. Of course, Cape Cod wouldn’t be as popular with anglers without its diverse game fish selections. A North Atlantic favorite would have to be cod and haddock, while striped bass is just as popular. Bluefish, sharks, and bluefin tuna are also unique to the area. Anglers will get a chance at these fish via the many characters dotted along the coast of the bay area. 

Aside from the bay itself, Cape Cod Canal is also an excellent place to reel in fish. The artificial canal connects Cape Cod Bay with Buzzards Bay to its south. All-year long fishers line the side of the canal hoping to catch fish going to and from the two connected bodies of water. These fish include striped bass, black sea bass, and bluefish. Though prohibited from being caught, rare marine mammals like whales and dolphins use the canal at certain times, something many families enjoy. 


Top 10 Fish Species in Lowell Holly, MA

There is a variety of gamefish to be caught in Lowell Holly. In no particular order, here are ten of the most popular for anglers: Atlantic cod, haddock, largemouth bass, trout, perch, herring, golden shiner, bluefin tuna, black sea bass, and catfish.

Lowell Holly, MA Fishing: A Cape Cod Bay Hidden Gem Fish species
White Catfish
White Catfish fish

Habitat: Coastal River, Tidal Water

Weight: 6 - 9 Pounds

Length: 13" - 24"

Brown Bullhead 
Brown Bullhead  fish

Habitat: Lake, River, Backwater

Weight: 1 - 5 Pounds

Length: 8" - 22"

Chain Pickerel
Chain Pickerel fish

Habitat: Lake, River, Pond, Bogs, Swamps

Weight: 3 - 5 Pounds

Length: 14" - 39"

Pumpkinseed  fish

Habitat: Lake, River

Weight: 1 - 1 Pounds

Length: 4" - 16"

Smallmouth Bass 
Smallmouth Bass  fish

Habitat: Lake, River

Weight: 1 - 4 Pounds

Length: 12" - 27"

Largemouth Bass
Largemouth Bass fish

Habitat: Lake, Pond, Rivers

Weight: 2 - 22 Pounds

Length: 15" - 32"