Largemouth bass fishing on Brainard Pond, Readfield, Maine (September 26, 2015)

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The access point to Brainard Pond. The fog on the water is so thick that the pond, located right behind Christian, is invisible!

The access point to Brainard Pond. The fog on the water is so thick that the pond, located right behind Christian, is invisible!

Brainard Pond is a 20-acre body of water located in the town of Readfield (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 12 B4). I found one access point as follows: turn on Plains Road from Route 17, drive north on Plains Road for just under 0.5 mile and look for an unnamed gravel road on the left. You’ve gone too far on Plains Road if you pass Brainard Road.  Turn left on the gravel road and go straight unto a forest path when the gravel road veers to the left after about 0.1 mile. The pond is located 0.3 miles further down this path. It looks rough and overgrown but my small front-wheel-drive car made it in and out fine. I did walk first all the way to the pond and back just to make sure that I wouldn’t get stuck! I’m assuming for the purpose of this blog that this access is legitimate because it was not posted anywhere along the way. You can leave your car in the woods about 200 ft from the pond. Only small hand-carried craft can be launched from this point.

 

 

 

 

 

The western shoreline of Brainard Pond after the fog has lifted. Notice the lack of aquatic vegetation even though the water is no more than a few feet deep in this area.

The western shoreline of Brainard Pond after the fog has lifted. Notice the lack of aquatic vegetation even though the water is no more than a few feet deep in this area.

 

 

It was well worth the effort of figuring out a way into Brainard Pond. This pond is small, pretty, and isolated. Its challenging access also essentially guarantees that you’ll have the place all to yourself. It is completely surrounded by woods and only has a single structure and a small dock along its entire shoreline. The surface water is slightly stained and has a cloudy look to it. The substrate is soft and muddy. The pond has a maximum and mean depth of 13 ft and 9 ft, respectively. The amount of aquatic vegetation is surprisingly sparse given the soft bottom and the relatively shallow depth. Other holding structure (e.g., submerged wood) is also scant. Click here for a depth map and more fisheries information. The bass fishing rules fall under the general fishing regulations (click here for more details). I was hoping to paddle down the outlet of Brainard Pond to gain access to Mill Pond which is located a small distance further downstream. I was unsuccessful because the outlet was obstructed and too shallow. I also could not find an alternative way into Mill pond and therefore removed it from my fishing list.

 

Life is good!!

Life is good!!

My 12-year old nephew Christian and I arrive at the access point of Brainard Pond at 7:15 am. We left home early this morning because I have several ponds I’d like to check out today. There’s a definite nip in the air, with the temperature in the mid 40’s. Actually, it is so fresh that the pond is completely engulfed in a thick coat of fog. We load up the canoe with our gear and start fishing along the eastern shoreline which stays in the shadow as the sun ascents behind the tree line. The rising sun quickly warms up the surrounding air and slowly boils off the morning fog, revealing the whole pond.  A slight breeze helps the process along. We catch a total of eight largemouth bass in about one hour using mostly our buzzbaits. All the fish are relatively uniform and smallish in size (13” to 15”), which suggests that the bass in this pond are abundant but don’t grow to a large size. The pond is small enough that we fish its entire periphery. Not surprisingly, six of those eight bass (plus a pickerel) are caught along the “shadow” (i.e., eastern) shoreline, whereas only two come from the “sunny (i.e., western) shoreline. This lob-sided pattern really goes to show that it pays to focus on shadowy habitat when fishing for largemouth bass in small ponds.

 

 

 

 

A glorious view of Brainard Pond from the access point after the fog has lifted.

A glorious view of Brainard Pond from the access point after the fog has lifted.

The results: I caught five largemouth bass (largest = 14”), whereas Christian caught three largemouth bass (largest = 15”) in one hour of fishing.

 

Was the information in this blog useful? I invite you to share your thoughts and opinions. Also, feel free to discuss your fishing experiences at this location.

 

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