I’m spending the weekend with my family at Sebago Lake State Park, which is located at the northern end of Sebago Lake in Naples. I love camping at this location in early June because we have the camp ground (almost…) to ourselves, yet the weather is warm enough to make an overnight stay a pleasure. It is only later on in the summer that the park becomes crowded and noisy on weekends. My son Joel and I decide to get up at 6 am on Sunday morning to spend two hours fishing for smallmouth bass in and around the Dingley Islands before the rest of the family gets up. The Dingley islands consist of two dozen or so small to large islands located in the northwestern corner of Sebago Lake, near South Casco (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 5 C1).
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I’m spending the weekend with my family at Sebago Lake State Park, which is located at the northern end of Sebago Lake in Naples. I love camping at this location in early June because we have the camp ground (almost…) to ourselves, yet the weather is warm enough to make an overnight stay a pleasure. It is only later on in the summer that the park will become crowded and noisy on weekends. Christian, my ten-year old nephew and my latest project for turning another family member into an ardent fisherman, asks me if we can go fishing…
I decide to give Sebago Cove a try. I don’t want to drive up to the cove from the state park with my boat because we only have 2 hours to fish. Instead, we leave the state park by car at 5 pm and quickly arrive at the Route 114 bridge over the short thoroughfare which connects Sebago Lake to Sebago Cove in South Naples. We park the car on the “Sebago Lake” side of the road and walk diagonally across the narrow bridge and over the railing to fish the cove by the thoroughfare. Note that this spot is not really “kid friendly” due to its location next to a busy road and the fact that the bridge lacks shoulders to safely walk on. An alternative option is to fish the Sebago Lake side of the thoroughfare.
The Pleasant River is a relatively short stream which originates in Gray and merges with the Presumpscot River near South Windham. The stretch I’m fishing today flows from upstream of Pope Road up to Route 302 (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 5 D2). The State stocks this river several times in the spring with a combined total of about 2,300 to 2,500 brown trout and brook trout. Most of the stocked fish typically measure about 10”. Click here for more details on the trout stocking program. Continue reading
Ell Pond (a.k.a. Little Pond) covers 32 acres and is located on the townline between Wells and Sanford (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 2 D4). Drive on Horace Mill Road and turn off on Ell Pond Road. Hang a right and the unimproved boat launch will appear at the end of the road. This small water body is surprisingly deep (maximum depth of 51 ft) and crystal clear. The substrate consists of rough sand, gravel, and cobble. Click here for a depth map and more fisheries information
Alden’s Pond is a 1-acre, kids-only fishing pond located behind the Gorham campus of the University of Southern Maine (USM) (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 5 E2). To reach the pond, look for the USM police department office on Husky Drive (across from the John Mitchell Center), walk behind the office and down the steep dirt path, and pass the small retaining pond across from the soccer field. Your target will be visible on the left through the trees. The pond is fishable under Special Regulation Code S-9, i.e., open to fishing only to kids under 16-years old, restricted to two lines per person, and a daily bag limit of two trout. Click here and here for more details on the fishing regulations pertaining to this pond. Click here for a depth map and more fisheries information.
The Presumpscot River is the outlet of Sebago Lake. It flows for about 25 winding miles through the towns of Standish, Windham, Gorham, Westbrook, Falmouth, and Portland before emptying out in Casco Bay. The river drops an impressive 270 feet between Sebago Lake and the ocean through a series of falls. Many of these falls lay submerged behind the dams that dot the river. However, one of those falls, located in Westbrook, is easily accessible and makes for a great fishing site. That’s where I’m heading this morning with my 10-year old nephew Christian, who has developed into an eager fisherman this year. The Saccarappa Falls are located just upstream of Bridge Street, off Maine Street in downtown Westbrook. Ample parking is available across from a small municipal park. We walk towards the river, squeeze through a railing, and scamper down the rocks towards the water.
Wilcox Pond is a 3-acre pond located next to Saint Joseph’s Cemetery on West Street in Biddeford, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 3 C2). This body of water is set aside as a “kids only” fishing pond. It is fishable under Special Regulation Code S-9, i.e., open to fishing only to kids under the age of 16, restricted to two lines per person, and a daily bag limit of two trout. Click here and here for more details on this topic. Every year, the state stocks it two or three times between early April and mid May with a total of between 300 and 400 10” brook trout. Do the math: this small body of water is loaded with brookies, which makes for an exciting fishing spot for young budding anglers! There is also the potential for catching larger hold-over trout because even though the pond is shallow (maximum depth = 6 ft), the bottom remains cool throughout the summer due to input from two cold-water inlets. Click here for a depth map and more fisheries information.
The Little River has its sources in Standish and Buxton and merges with the Presumpscot River downstream from Route 237 at the Gorham/Windham town line (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 5 E2). Every year, the state stocks the main stem of this river several times between early April and mid May with a total of around 2,300 brown trout and brook trout measuring 9” to 10”. Click here for stocking details .
Colleyer Brook runs roughly between North Gray and its confluence with the Royal River in East Gray (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 5 C4). Every year, the state stocks this stream several times between early April and early May with a total of about 2,000 brown trout and brook trout measuring around 10”. Click here for stocking details are available at . I’m spending a couple of hours this afternoon exploring that part of Collyer Brook which flows upstream from Merrill Road (off Mayall Road) in Gray. I arrive at the bridge at around 2:30 pm and park on the sandy shoulder. There’s enough space to park a half-dozen cars. I talk to two guys who are getting out of their waders. They tell me that they fished the stretch upstream of the bridge and that they caught one 14” brown trout in 3 hours.