Largemouth bass fishing on Otter Pond, Bridgton, Maine (June 14, 2014)

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General view of Otter Pond from the launch area

General view of Otter Pond from the launch area

Otter Pond is a 90-acre body of water located in Bridgton, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 4 A4). To access the pond, turn right on Otter Pond Road after driving about 4 miles north on Route 302 from Naples. The pond will appear on your left after about 0.2 miles. Note that this “road” is quite rough and eroded, with rocks and small boulders sticking out left and right. I’m able to get through with my front-wheel drive car, but only slowly and very carefully… This pond provides a real sense of isolation and remoteness, which is remarkable considering that it is located but a few of miles outside of both Naples and Bridgton. Only two or three houses are visible from the water. The surrounding landscape is completely forested, with Mount Henry keeping watch in the background.

 

 

 

 

 

The launch area is very rough. Notice the two boulders.

The launch area is very rough. Notice the two boulders.

 

 

The water in Otter Pond is darkly stained. The substrate consists mostly of sand and gravel but is covered with a layer of organic muck. The lily pads grow luxuriously, particularly along the western (shallower) shoreline, and at the northern end of the pond which abuts a huge bog. The fishing rules on this pond fall under the General Law provisions. Click here for more details. The pond has a maximum depth of 20 ft and an average depth of 10 ft, making it relatively shallow. Click here for a depth map and more fisheries information.

 

Christian is focused on his fishing!

Christian is focused on his fishing!

I arrive at the launch area on Otter Pond with my 11 year-old nephew Christian around 3 pm. Note that the word “launch” must be taken with a large grain of salt. The problem is the presence of two large boulders which only allow small, trailered boats to squeeze through (which I’ve done it successfully in the past with a 12-ft aluminum boat). The launch is also shallow and unimproved, which can cause problems to float a boat if the lake level is low. That’s not a problem for us today because we’re fishing from my canoe. The sky is grey and overcast but the breeze is light and fresh. We waste no time paddling to the northern end of the pond in order to allow the wind to gently push us back along the entire western shoreline. I’ve fished this pond several times in the past and have found the largemouth bass to be plentiful but rather stunted. The largest bass I’ve caught in here measured about 16”. On an entirely different note, Otter Pond is fun to ice fish early in the winter because it freezes over quickly. However, beware that parts of Otter Pond Road between Route 302 and the pond have a nasty habit of turning into a treacherous ice sheet on account of small springs that feed water onto the freezing road.

 

 

OK, I admit... This is no fish to write home about...

OK, I admit… This is no fish to write home about…

We start fishing the western shoreline and notice multiple abandoned bass nests scattered about in less than 5 ft of water. The nests are clearly visible because the bright, cleaned-out substrate contrasts sharply against the surrounding dark bottom material. I fish with a dark “in- your-face/dare-to-eat-me” buzzbait, while Christian uses a trusted soft stick bait. We spend about 2 hours pounding the area as the breeze pushes us towards the launch area. Our efforts result in three smallish largemouth bass for me and none for Christian. The fish were finicky this afternoon, presumably because the spawn is over and they have scattered all around the pond. The activity should pick up again in a few short weeks :- )

 

 

 

 

 

The results: I caught three largemouth bass (largest = 14”) in two hours, but Christian got skunked.

 

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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