Largemouth bass fishing on Lake Arrowhead, Limerick and Waterboro, Maine (July 3, 2017)

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Lake Arrowhead provides hundreds of acres of shallow coves and bays

Lake Arrowhead covers 779 acres and is located in Limerick and Waterboro, York County, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 2 A2). This lake has two trailerable boat launches. The first one is located off New Dam Road by the dam over which flows the Little Ossippee River. The second one is about two miles further south also off New Dam Road but closer to Chadburne Ridge Road which separates this lake from Little Ossippee Pond. I put my small aluminum craft in the water by the dam. The water is deep enough at this location to dispatch large boats. Plenty of parking is also available next to the launch. I arrive at the launch by 10 am and am greeted by a friendly and chatty boat inspector. The lake has been infested with Eurasian milfoil, an aggressive invasive plant species, for over 20 years. She checks every boat going in and coming out for fragments of this aquatic pest to ensure that the infestation does not spread to other water bodies.Surprisingly, considering it’s the long July 4th weekend, I only see three other cars with trailers parked by the launch.

 

 

There’s gotta be a bass hiding in there somewhere!

 

 

Lake Arrowhead was formed way back in the day by damming the Little Ossippee River which ultimately joins the Saco River in East Limington. The lake is a substantial man-made reservoir consisting of several major navigation “thoroughfares” off which split innumerable shallow coves, backwaters, and islands. Be aware that one can readily get lost in the warren of dead ends, marshy areas and floating islands! Some of these shallows were also logged before the reservoir was filled and now form large submerged stump fields which offer perfect holding structure for largemouth bass. The lake is not deep given its large size (the maximum depth is about 20 ft) and the numerous coves are uniformly shallow (< 4 ft) and filled with aquatic vegetation. A depth map is not available. The shoreline is well developed, particularly along the major navigation arteries. The lake is specifically managed to produce trophy largemouth bass. Hence, the rules are strict, as follows: general fishing laws apply, except that (a) all bass caught between April 1 and June 30 must be released alive at once, and (b) between July 1 and March 31, the daily bag limit on bass is one fish and all bass measuring between 16 and 20 inches must be released alive at once.

 

Icing on the cake!

I have less than two hours to check out Lake Arrowhead this morning, which is a ridiculously inadequate amount of time considering that one could easily spend the entire day just navigating along its periphery! The sun is also blazing high up in the sky, the air temperature is in the low 80s, and a stiff breeze blows in from the south west. It’s summer! I navigate northward for about 20 minutes, stopping here and there to inspect the local habitat and cast a lure. I end up in a large shallow weed-choked cove where I start to fan-cast a noisy buzzbait to probe for bass. The fishing is difficult because the aquatic vegetation constantly wraps itself around the lure and must be removed before making the next cast. I also can’t use the electric motor to control my position in the wind because plants immediately clog the propeller. This is becoming a problem. I suspect that this place would become unfishable in a couple of weeks when the milfoil reaches all the way to the surface. I see a narrow inlet to my left which is still in the shadows and out of the wind. I motor into this channel and cast my 5” soft stickbait in various recesses of plants and branches but don’t generate any hits. My goodness; it’s been over an hour now and I’m still skunked. I move out of the cove and into a deeper nearby bay and finally catch a largemouth bass on the buzzbait. It is clear that the bass are not in the shallows and are most likely hiding off-shore in slightly deeper water. Unfortunately, I have to leave and can’t prove this theory. Regardless, Lake Arrowhead is well worth the effort to figure out because it offers fantastic largemouth bass fishing for the angler who is willing to spend the time and effort unlocking its secrets.

 

The results: I landed one 16” largemouth bass in 1.5 hours of fishing.

 

Lake Arrowhead provides beautiful habitat for largemouth bass

 

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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