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).
My friend John recently moved from the city to the country side where he bought a beautiful house in the woods. The previous owner dammed up a small spring-fed streamlet and dug a 12-ft deep hole to create a small pond in the backyard. He also stocked that pond with four dozen 8” rainbow trout and a handful of 5 lbs. spawners! John, who knows my passion for fishing, invites me over to try to catch one of those monsters. I readily accept after some light arm twisting : ) He does request that I make sure to remove the barbs from the hooks of my lures because he doesn’t want to injure the smaller rainbows in his pond.
I show up in his back yard at 8 am with my 10-year old nephew Christian, who is just as excited as I am about the possibility of catching the fish of a lifetime. I’ll fish with #2 Mepps spinners on an ultra-light rod with a reel containing 6-pound test line, a Woolly Bugger on a fly rod with sinking line, and a 4” plastic swim bait on a heavier rod and reel. Christian will fish with a bobber and live worms. We see surface activity as we quietly approach the pond upon arrival: the fish are picking at stuff in the water film, and one of them is huge!! I implore Christian to crouch down and to walk softly so as not to scare the fish. I start casting my Mepps but without generating any interest. Christian, on the other hand, gets several bites in the first 30 minutes but is either too distracted or not putting enough tension on the line to set the hook quickly enough.