Holt Pond is located in the town of Bridgton (see the Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 4 B4). From Route 302 in Naples, turn left on Perley Road and drive for about 1.4 miles until the intersection with Chaplin Mills Road. Drive straight on Grist Mill Road (a gravel road) and turn left after about 0.2 miles. Continue until you reach a small parking area. Holt Pond can be reached via its outlet, called the Muddy River (although calling it a “river” is a misnomer since it has little or no current), by walking down the left trail that start at the parking area. It takes about three minutes to reach the outlet. Only small craft can be launched from the Muddy River because of the carry-in. It takes another 10 minutes of paddling on the Muddy River to reach the pond itself.
The energy needed to reach this pond is effort well spent. Holt Pond is a true gem which sits at the center of a 400-acre nature preserve, no more than a 10-minute drive from Naples (click here for more details). The water body is completely isolated. No houses, docks, roads, or motor boats spoil the silence and natural beauty. The pond covers 25 acres and has a maximum depth of 10 ft. The northern and western shores are fringed by a large bog, whereas the southern and eastern shores abut woodlands. The entire shoreline is quite shallow and is surrounded by a broad expanse of lily pads and other aquatic vegetation. The surface water is darkly stained and the bottom consists of organic muck. Click here for a depth map and more fisheries information.
I reach Holt Pond at 3:30 pm and start fishing the edges of the lilypads with a large buzzbait. It’s a great “search bait” which allows one to cover a lot of water in little time. I need it because the stiff breeze is blowing my canoe right along. I catch my first largemouth bass (14”) on my fourth cast! That’s encouraging. As the wind moves me along, I’m hearing bass feeding activity in the extensive shallows to my left. I paddle into that area and skip a 5” soft stickbait on the water surface over and through the dense vegetation. I have no takers. I return to the buzzbait which I cast into pockets of open water among the aquatic vegetation. This effort yields two more (small) largemouth bass. On my way back to the access point, I cast my buzzbait and 5” soft stickbait along the weedy shoreline of the Muddy River, but generate no interest. It’s time to move on to my next destination, but I’m glad to have visited this little beauty.
The result: I caught three largemouth bass (largest = 14”) in 1 hour and 15 minutes of fishing.
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