TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Kennebec County, Maine

The TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Kennebec County are highlighted below (in alphabetical order).  A pond is considered “top” based on its stocking density. Simply put, the more trout are packed per acre, the higher the chances of catching them through the ice! Note that only a handful of ponds are listed below because most of the stocked water bodies in Kennebec County are quite large, resulting in low trout densities.

 

For the purpose of this blog, I’ll define a brook trout pond as a body of water with a surface area of less than about 100 acres which is stocked in the fall with hatchery-reared brook trout to support ice fishing.  These ponds tend to freeze over early in the season and are typically safe to fish well before the bigger lakes become accessible. This provides early-action opportunities for those of us (myself included!) who just can’t wait to get the hard-water fishing season going. Click here for tips to increase your chances of catching more brookies through the ice.

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TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Hancock County, Maine

The TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Hancock County are highlighted below (in alphabetical order).  A pond is considered “top” based on its stocking density. Simply put, the more trout are packed per acre, the higher the chances of catching them through the ice!

 

For the purpose of this blog, I’ll define a brook trout pond as a body of water with a surface area of less than about 100 acres which is stocked in the fall with hatchery-reared brook trout to support ice fishing.  These ponds tend to freeze over early in the season and are typically safe to fish well before the bigger lakes become accessible. This provides early-action opportunities for those of us (myself included!) who just can’t wait to get the hard-water fishing season going. Click here for tips to increase your chances of catching more brookies through the ice.

 

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TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Franklin County, Maine

The TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Franklin County are highlighted below (in alphabetical order).  Only a few ponds are listed because most of the smaller water bodies are closed to ice fishing.  A pond is considered “top” based on its stocking density. Simply put, the more trout are packed per acre, the higher the chances of catching them through the ice!

 

For the purpose of this blog, I’ll define a brook trout pond as a body of water with a surface area of less than about 100 acres (with some notable exceptions…) which is stocked in the fall with hatchery-reared brook trout to support ice fishing.  These ponds tend to freeze over early in the season and are typically safe to fish well before the bigger lakes become accessible. This provides early-action opportunities for those of us (myself included!) who just can’t wait to get the hard-water fishing season going. Click here for tips to increase your chances of catching more brookies through the ice.

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TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Cumberland County, Maine

The TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Cumberland County are highlighted below (in alphabetical order).  A pond is considered “top” based on its stocking density. Simply put, the more trout are packed per acre, the higher the chances of catching them through the ice!

 

For the purpose of this blog, I’ll define a brook trout pond as a body of water with a surface area of less than 100 acres which is stocked in the fall with hatchery-reared brook trout to support ice fishing.  These ponds tend to freeze over early in the season and are typically safe to fish well before the bigger lakes become accessible. This provides early-action opportunities for those of us (myself included!) who just can’t wait to get the hard-water fishing season going. Click here for tips to increase your chances of catching more brookies through the ice.

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TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Aroostook County, Maine

The TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Aroostook County are highlighted below (in alphabetical order).  A pond is considered “top” based on its stocking density. Simply put, the more trout are packed per acre, the higher the chances of catching them through the ice!

 

For the purpose of this blog, I’ll define a brook trout pond as a body of water with a surface area of less than 100 acres (with some notable exceptions…) which is stocked in the fall with hatchery-reared brook trout to support ice fishing.  These ponds tend to freeze over early in the season and are typically safe to fish well before the bigger lakes become accessible. This provides early-action opportunities for those of us (myself included!) who just can’t wait to get the hard-water fishing season going. Click here for tips to increase your chances of catching more brookies through the ice.

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TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Androscoggin County, Maine

The TOP brook trout ponds for the 2016 ice fishing season in Androscoggin County are highlighted below (in alphabetical order).  A pond is considered “top” based on its stocking density. Simply put, the more trout are packed per acre, the higher the chances of catching them through the ice!

 

For the purpose of this blog, I’ll define a brook trout pond as a body of water with a surface area of less than 100 acres which is stocked in the fall with hatchery-reared brook trout to support ice fishing.  These ponds tend to freeze over early in the season and are typically safe to fish well before the bigger lakes become accessible.  This provides early-action opportunities for those of us (myself included!) who just can’t wait to get the hard-water fishing season going. Click here for tips to increase your chances of catching more brookies through the ice.

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Best ice fishing ponds for catching splake in Maine (winter of 2016)

This blog describes a select group of ponds in Maine that provide the best potential for catching splake through the ice during the winter of 2016. A splake is a “hybrid” fish created by crossing a lake trout with a brook trout. It has the advantage of being sterile, growing fast, and feeding on forage fish shunned by brook trout. Splake are also easier to catch through the ice than rainbow or brown trout. Around 55 ponds in Maine are managed as splake fisheries. Many of these ponds are open to ice fishing and are stocked with this species each spring and/or fall.

 

I only present ponds that were stocked in 2015 with a minimum of 2 splake per acre. As a rough yardstick, the average stocking density for landlocked salmon in Maine ponds and lakes is about 0.3 to 0.5 salmon per acre, which equals 1 salmon every two to three acres.

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Best ice fishing ponds for catching rainbow trout in Maine (winter of 2016)

This blog describes a select group of ponds in Maine that provide the best potential for catching rainbow trout through the ice during the winter of 2016. Around 20 ponds, most of them located in southern Maine counties, are managed as rainbow trout fisheries. Many of these ponds are open to ice fishing and are stocked with bows each spring and/or fall.

 

I only present ponds that were stocked in 2015 with a minimum of 1 rainbow trout per acre. As a rough yardstick, the average stocking density for landlocked salmon in Maine ponds and lakes is about 0.3 to 0.5 salmon per acre, which equals 1 salmon every two to three acres.

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Best ice fishing ponds for catching brown trout in Maine (winter of 2016)

This blog describes a select group of ponds in Maine that provide the best potential for catching brown trout through the ice during the winter of 2016. Around 110 ponds throughout the state are managed as brown trout fisheries. Most of these ponds are open to ice fishing and are stocked with brown trout each spring and/or fall. I only present ponds that were stocked in 2015 with a minimum of about 2 brown trout per acre. As a rough yardstick, the average stocking density for landlocked salmon in Maine ponds and lakes is about 0.3 to 0.5 salmon per acre, which equals 1 salmon every two to three acres.
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Best ice fishing ponds for catching lunker trout in Maine (winter of 2016)

The state releases part of its trout brood stock every fall to create some real and unexpected excitement on the ice. In most cases, though, too few of these huge fish are present such that catching one of them falls into the category of plain-old luck. In a few select ponds, however, enough of these fish were released in the fall of 2015 that it would make sense to target them specifically. For this blog, I define a “lunker trout” as measuring between 18” and 21”. Such a fish would weigh between 3.0 and 5.0 lbs depending on its size, which would make anyone’s ice fishing day! I also defined the minimum stocking density where it becomes worthwhile to target these hogs as around 0.3 fish per acre of pond. This value represents the average stocking density for landlocked salmon throughout Maine.

The following ponds (presented in alphabetical order) met the two criteria outlined above (i.e., fish size range and minimum stocking density).

No other ponds in the State of Maine offer better odds of catching the fish of a lifetime during the 2016 ice fishing season than those listed below. It is recommended to consult the latest law book (click here for details) about special ice fishing rules that may apply on these ponds.

I did my utmost best to verify that a particular pond is indeed open for ice fishing, but I make no guarantees whatsoever that my interpretation of the convoluted Maine fishing rules is accurate or correct. It is up to each reader of this blog to ensure that a pond listed below can be fished through the ice by checking the latest regulations.

Note also that the list below excludes “kids only” ponds which have their own stocking regime and special fishing rules.

 

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