Brown trout fishing on Crystal Lake, Gray, Maine (May 30, 2015)

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General view of Crystal Lake

General view of Crystal Lake

Crystal Lake (a.k.a. Dry Pond) is a 189-acre body of water located in Gray, Cumberland County, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 5 B3). This relatively small lake is heavily developed, particularly along its western shoreline, but sustains a popular regional salmonid fishery consisting of rainbow trout, brown trout and brook trout. The state stocks the lake annually with these three species to sustain their populations. It is also the location for a popular annual ice fishing derby (click here for more details) attended by several thousand people each year. A hard-top boat ramp is located at the southern end of the lake off Mayberry Road. The town of Gray also maintains a public beach and swimming area right next to this ramp. Ample parking is available across from the launch. All in all, this lake is a busy spot but well worth a visit in the spring on account of its superb trout fishing. I’ll note here that, in the past, I have caught rainbow trout trolling on this water body well into July, which is evidence of the high quality of this fishery. Crystal Lake has a maximum and average depth of 59 ft and 25 ft, respectively. Click here for a depth map and more fisheries information.

 

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Best ice fishing ponds for catching brown trout in Maine (winter of 2015)

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 2015. 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 2014 with a minimum of 1 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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Trout fishing on the Kennebunk River in Kennebunk, Maine (May 10, 2014)

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The Kennebunk River upstream of the Route 1 bridge provides great trout habitat

The Kennebunk River upstream of the Route 1 bridge provides great trout habitat

The Kennebunk River has it source in the area of Waterboro, Maine. It flows in a generally southeasterly direction through Kennebunk before emptying out in the Atlantic Ocean in Kennebunkport. Every spring, the State stocks this river three or four times in April and May with (give or take) around 2,000 brook trout and brown trout measuring between 8” and 10”. General fishing rules apply on this body of water. Click here for more details on the regulations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Trout fishing on Willett Brook in Bridgeton, Maine (May 18, 2014)

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good stretch #6 (publish)This is a tale of two brooks…Willett Brook has its source in Denmark, ME. It flows north towards Bridgton and empties out into Long Lake. The State stocks this stream once each spring in late April-early May with around 400 brown trout measuring between 8” and 10”. General fishing rules apply. Click here for more details on the regulations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Trout fishing on the Merriland River, Wells, Maine (May 5, 2014)

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A lazy pool on the Merriland River above the Collins Road culvert

A lazy pool on the Merriland River above the Collins Road culvert

The Merriland River has its source in Sanford, ME. It flows through the towns of Wells and Kennebunk and into the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge before emptying out in the Atlantic Ocean. Every year, the State stocks this river two or three times in April and May with (give or take) around 2,000 brook trout and brown trout measuring about 10”.  Click here for the latest stocking data. I’m spending two hours this evening exploring that part of the Merriland River which flows for about 2 miles between Route 1 and Interstate 95 in Kennebunk. I drive up Coles Hill Road from Route 1 for exactly 1 mile and arrive at a large culvert through which flows the river. I’m not the only one here this evening: five other cars are parked along the shoulder. The weather is grey and overcast. The air temp is 56°F and the water comes in at 54°F. The water level also looks perfect. Note that this stretch is governed by special fishing rules, as follows: (a) the river is open to fishing between April 1 and October 31, (b) only artificial lures are allowed, and (c) the daily bag limit for trout is two fish. Click here for more details about the fishing rules. 

 

 

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Best ice fishing ponds for catching brown trout in Maine (winter of 2014)

Over 110 ponds throughout Maine are managed as brown trout fisheries. Many of these ponds are open to ice fishing and are stocked with brown trout in the spring or fall. This blog highlights the ponds (presented in alphabetical order) which provide the best odds of catching browns through the ice.

I only present ponds that were stocked in 2013 with a minimum of 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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Trout fishing on the Nezinscott River, Turner, Maine (October 26, 2013)


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View of the Nezinscott River

View of the Nezinscott River

The Nezinscott River has it sources in Woodstock (West Branch) and Sumner (East Branch). The two branches merge in Bucksfield, from where the river flows eastwards past Turner and Turner Center into the Androscoggin River. It has a total length of 25 to 30 miles (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 11).  The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife stocks the portion of the Nezinscott River in the Turner area between April and May with about 2,500-3,000 9”-10” trout (mostly brown trout) each spring, and then spices things up in October with another 200 or so larger brown trout (click here for more details).

 

 

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Trout fishing on the Pleasant River, Windham, Maine (May 23, 2013)


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General view of the Pleasant River

General view of the Pleasant River

The Pleasant River is a relatively short stream which originates in Gray and merges with the Presumpscot River near South Windham. The stretch I’m fishing today flows from upstream of Pope Road up to Route 302 (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 5 D2). The State stocks this river several times in the spring with a combined total of about 2,300 to 2,500 brown trout and brook trout. Most of the stocked fish typically measure about 10”. Click here for more details on the trout stocking program. Continue reading

Trout fishing on the Presumpscot River, Westbrook, Maine (May 18, 2013)

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View of the falls on the Presumpscot River from Bridge Street in downtown Westbrook

View of the falls on the Presumpscot River from Bridge Street in downtown Westbrook

The Presumpscot River is the outlet of Sebago Lake. It flows for about 25 winding miles through the towns of Standish, Windham, Gorham, Westbrook, Falmouth, and Portland before emptying out in Casco Bay. The river drops an impressive 270 feet between Sebago Lake and the ocean through a series of falls. Many of these falls lay submerged behind the dams that dot the river. However, one of those falls, located in Westbrook, is easily accessible and makes for a great fishing site. That’s where I’m heading this morning with my 10-year old nephew Christian, who has developed into an eager fisherman this year.  The Saccarappa Falls are located just upstream of Bridge Street, off Maine Street in downtown Westbrook. Ample parking is available across from a small municipal park. We walk towards the river, squeeze through a railing, and scamper down the rocks towards the water.

 

 

 

 

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Trout fishing on Little River in Gorham, Maine (May 11, 2013)


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View if the Little River looking upstream from underneath the Route 237 bridge

View of the Little River looking upstream from underneath the Route 237 bridge

The Little River has its sources in Standish and Buxton and merges with the Presumpscot River downstream from Route 237 at the Gorham/Windham town line (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 5 E2). Every year, the state stocks the main stem of this river several times between early April and mid May with a total of around 2,300 brown trout and brook trout measuring 9” to 10”. Click here for stocking details .

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