Best ice fishing ponds for catching large trout in Cumberland County, Maine (winter of 2017)

This blog highlights the ponds in Cumberland County which provide the best odds of catching larger stocked trout during the 2017 ice fishing season. About 15 ponds open to ice fishing in this county are stocked with trout each fall. Most of these fish are relatively small (7” to 12”), but plentiful, in order to provide fast action. The state also spiced up some of the ponds with larger trout, which are defined here as fish measuring 13” or more, and weighing at least 1 pound. 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 large trout in Aroostook County, Maine (winter of 2017)

This blog highlights the ponds in Aroostook County which provide the best odds of catching larger stocked trout during the 2017 ice fishing season. About 15 ponds open to ice fishing in this county are stocked with trout each fall. Most of these fish are relatively small (7” to 12”), but plentiful, in order to provide fast action. The state also spiced up some of the ponds with larger trout, which are defined here as fish measuring 13” or more, and weighing at least 1 pound. 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 large trout in Androscoggin County, Maine (winter of 2017)

This blog highlights the ponds in Androscoggin County which provide the best odds of catching larger stocked trout during the 2017 ice fishing season. About ten ponds open to ice fishing in this county are stocked with trout each fall. Most of these fish are relatively small (7” to 12”), but plentiful, in order to provide fast action. The state also spiced up some of the ponds with bigger trout, which are defined here as fish measuring 13” or more, and weighing at least 1 pound. 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 lunker trout in Maine during the winter of 2017

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 2016 that it would make sense to target them specifically.

For this blog, I define a “lunker trout” as measuring 18” or more. 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 0.4 fish per acre of pond. This value represents the average stocking density for landlocked salmon throughout Maine.

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Best ice fishing ponds for catching splake in Maine during the winter of 2017

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 2017. 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 below those ponds that were stocked in 2016 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 during the winter of 2017

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 2017. 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 2016 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 during the winter of 2017

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 2017. 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 2016 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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Ice fishing for brook trout on Otter Pond #4, Standish, Maine (December 18, 2016)

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We’re not the only ones interested in ice fishing the Otter Ponds this morning!!

Otter Pond #4 (a.k.a. Snake Pond) covers 6 acres and is located in Standish, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 5 D1). Click here for directions and here for a depth map. This blog identifies this small body of water as a top brook trout destination in Cumberland County for the 2017 ice fishing season. Both Otter Pond #4, and its larger sibling Otter Pond #2, are popular early ice fishing destinations in this part of southern Maine. The ponds reliably freeze over in December due to their small sizes and are also densely stocked with brook trout each fall. They represent the typical “put-and-take” winter trout fishery where the action is red-hot for the first three or four weeks of the hard-water season but then slows down considerably as more and more of the stocked brookies are harvested for the dinner table.

 

 

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TOP brook trout ponds for the 2017 ice fishing season in York County, Maine

The TOP brook trout ponds for the 2017 ice fishing season in York 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 2017 ice fishing season in Washington County, Maine

The TOP brook trout ponds for the 2017 ice fishing season in Washington 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 (with some 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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