Ice fishing for brook trout on Savade Pond, Windsor, Maine (January 2, 2017)

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The 10 am “shadow line” along the eastern shoreline of Savade Pond. Note the sharp contrast between the bright light and the dark shoreline.

Savade Pond covers 42 acres and is located off Greeley Road in Windsor, Kennebec County, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 13 C3). I get out of bed at 4:30 am in order to reach this pond by 6:45 am (sunrise this morning occurs at 7:15 am) with the goal to start fishing “at the crack ‘o dawn”! I identified this pond as a prime destination in Kennebec County for catching 1-lb brookies through the ice this winter. It is also one of a handful of elite ponds in Maine with a reasonable potential for catching an 18+” brood stock trout. That’s enough incentive for me to put in extra effort to arrive early! The pond is reached via a boat launch which is clearly marked on Greeley Road. The access road is gated but the gate is open when I arrive at 6:50 am. Ample parking is available by the pond. Note that I do not know if this access road and parking area are plowed after a snow storm. The distance between Greeley Road and the pond is less than 1000 ft and could therefore be easily walked, if needed. Click here for a depth map and more fisheries information.




Look at the huge mouth on this 15″ brookie!



I’m the first one on the ice when I arrive at Savade Pond. I pull my sled right across the hard water to the opposite (eastern) shoreline. The east side of a small trout pond is always the best shore to ice fish for brookies because it stays in the shadow far into the morning as the sun rises over the eastern horizon. Brookies under the ice avoid bright light. They are therefore more likely, everything else being equal, to remain active for longer along an east-facing shoreline when the forecast calls for bright sunshine, as is the case today. The downside is that this shoreline also remains colder in the morning due to the lack of sun… It’s 15°F when I arrive. The ice is a solid 10” and is covered by 6” of snow, the bottom 1” of which is wet and slushy. I start drilling my holes in what I expect to be 4 to 10 ft of water and notice that the depth increases much too quickly away from shore. Darn, I like it when the bottom gently slopes down because that provides more shallow feeding opportunities for trout. It actually takes me 45 minutes to set up my four traps because I have to drill many holes to find my target depth of 3-7 ft. Each trap is baited with a small 2” minnow placed half way down the water column.


The little jig that did!

No flags go up during this early-morning process, which is never a good sign when brook trout fishing over hard water. I also start jigging some of the extra holes I drilled but elicit no response. I do get my first flag at 8:15 am but that one yields a miniscule pickerel. Another flag goes up elsewhere 30 minutes later and results in a stolen bait fish. I immediately jig the hole and get a hit in less than two minutes. Someone is hungry down there! The fish snags the jig again 30 seconds later and I hook him! It’s a feisty 15” brookie with a huge, gaping mouth! I wish I could say that this is the start of something big, but no… I only get one more flag and no additional hits on the jig over the next 1.5 hours. Also, none of the bait fish are stolen or show signs of having been attacked. Clearly, the brookies just don’t want to play this morning. What a contrast to this experience and this experience earlier in the season! I make sure to chat with two large parties of anglers on the way back to my car. My two fish are actually holding up well against their fishing stories, which suggests that the conditions were just lousy everywhere this morning. I’m just glad to have caught one of the one-pound brookies that were stocked in Savade Pond this fall! The lunker trout will have to wait for some other time…


The results: I landed a single 15” brookie in 3.5 hours of hard fishing.


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2 thoughts on “Ice fishing for brook trout on Savade Pond, Windsor, Maine (January 2, 2017)

  1. Hi,
    I was on the pond this morning and saw you out there. I kept saying to myself, that’s gotta be the guy from the blog, he’s doing everything that the blog says to do! We laughed and thought it was funny, but it was you! Thanks for all the tips, I read them all and use them with success,

    • Hi Ryan, this is just too funny!! Things were slow on Savade Pond this morning, but I did catch that anticipated 1+ pound brook trout! It took a lot of effort, though. Nonetheless, it was a beautiful morning to be out on the ice. Best of luck. Stan

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