The boat launch for our trip is located in the shadow of the historic “Two-Penny Foot Bridge” at the Head of Falls municipal park in Waterville. The dam is about 0.5 mile upstream to the left.
For today’s expedition, Giovanni and I are fishing for smallmouth bass on the Kennebec River at the dam located upstream of the Ticonic Falls dam in Waterville, Kennebec County, Maine (see the Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 76 [Waterville/Winslow] B2). This spot can only be accessed by putting in a canoe or kayak at the foot of the historic “Two-Cent Footbridge” (also known as the Ticonic Footbridge) located at the Head of Falls municipal park off Front Street in downtown Waterville Keep in mind that this launch is not accessible to trailered boats. The dam is about half a mile further upstream. I fished this spot last year and enjoyed the action and the setting. I hope to repeat that earlier experience today with my grandson.
Silver Lake (a.k.a. Figure Eight Pond) is a 29-acre two-lobed body of water located in Sidney and Manchester, Kennebec County, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 12 B5). Click here for directions on how to reach this location. I note for the record that both Baxter Drive and Community Drive have a panel nailed to a tree along the side of the road stating “dead end”. Just ignore those signs and keep on going until you reach the pond.
View of the rough boat launch with the southern lobe in the background
The boat launch is unimproved, steep, and gravelly…
Silver Lake (a.k.a. Figure Eight Pond) is a 29-acre body of water located in Sidney and Manchester, Kennebec County, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 12 B5). To reach this location, drive on Route 27 north (towards Belgrade), turn left on Summerhaven Road, go for about 0.6 miles before turning left on Baxter Drive, drive for about 0.2 miles and turn right on Community Drive. The southern lobe of the pond will soon appear on your right. The public boat launch consists of loose gravel and is otherwise unimproved, but can accommodate small trailered boats. However, keep in mind that the launch is fairly steep; I had to use four-wheel drive to pull my boat up the wet and gravelly incline on my way out. In addition, the water by the launch is rather shallow, which requires backing into the lake a fair bit before the boat will float off. I also had to put on my hip boots to manually guide my boat back on the trailer on account of the shallow depth by the launch. Parking space is limited on Community Drive and occurs along the side of the road next to the launch.
View of the boat launch on the Kennebec River in downtown Waterville with the Lockwood Dam turbine house in the background.
My goal this morning is to catch smallmouth bass on the Kennebec River in the shadow of Lockwood Dam in downtown Waterville, Kennebec County, Maine (see the Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 76 C2). This long but low dam is located about 0.5 miles above the confluence with the Sebasticook River and is the most downstream hydroelectric structure on the Kennebec River. It is also an area I tried, but failed, to reach with my motor boat earlier this summer. To access this spot, drive to 10 Water Street in Waterville (look for the white “Hathaway Creative Center” sign). Turn into the large paved parking lot, drive all the way to the back, and look for the boat launch sign on the right. Beware that only canoes and kayaks can be launched from this location because the access point is blocked by large boulders.
View of the edge of the mowed field with the Sebasticook River flowing below in the background.
As I continue searching for spots to catch river smallmouth bass this summer, I identify a promising target just below the Benton Falls hydroelectric dam on the Sebasticook River next to Route 100A (Clinton Avenue) in Benton, located about five miles upstream of the Waterville/Winslow metro area (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 21 E3). The dam, which is visible from Route 100A, is located about 1,000 ft downstream of the Sebasticook Bridge Road (Route 139) which crosses the river at that point. My target location for this morning cannot be accessed from the dam itself because that whole area is fenced and posted as “Private Property” and “No Trespassing”.
The entrance to the municipal park on Front Street is clearly marked.
My goal today is to check out the smallmouth bass fishing on the Kennebec River at the dam located upstream of the Ticonic Falls Dam in Waterville, Kennebec County, Maine (see the Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 76 [Waterville/Winslow] B2). This spot can only be accessed by putting in a hand-carried craft at the foot of the “Two-Cent Footbridge” (also known as the Ticonic Footbridge) located at the Head of Falls municipal park on Front Street in downtown Waterville. The dam I want to check out is about three quarters of a mile further upstream.
View of the Route 137 bridge over the Kennebec River from the “little gold mine”…
For today’s smallmouth bass fishing trip, I target the most downstream of the many hydropower dams on the Kennebec River based on the pattern I developed in previous years on the Androscoggin River (click here, here, and here for examples). This dam is located at the Ticonic Falls in downtown Waterville, just upstream of the confluence with the Sebasticook River (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 76 [Waterville/Winslow] C2). As an important aside, I use two independent sources to pinpoint these types of fishing spots: (a) the Maine Atlas and Gazetteer which shows, among a multitude of different kinds of information, the location of all the public boat launches in the state and (b) Google Maps which allows me to “fly” over the landscape and identify dams or other interesting features well before I set foot on my boat.
The boat launch on Woodbury Pond is spacious and can accommodate big boats.
Sand Pond covers 177 acres and is located in Litchfield, Kennebec County, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 12 D3). This pond does not have its own hard-top public boat launch. The closest one is located at the northern end of Woodbury Pond, which is connected to Sand Pond via a wide underpass over which runs Routes 9 and 126. That public access point can be reached as follows: while driving north on Hallowell Road, turn left on Hardscrabble Road and make an immediate left on Whippoorwill Road. Drive 0.3 miles on this road until you see the blue public access sign to your left. The boat launch is clean, spacious and well-maintained. It provides plenty of parking and also access to a convenient porta potty. Continue reading →
My focus this afternoon are the dozen or so small log-driving islands located in the Kennebec River just upstream of Sevenmile island. The latter is shown in the background to the left.
This blog describes how my son and I enjoyed catching smallmouth bass in the stretch of the Kennebec River flowing for about two mile downstream of the boat launch in Sidney, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 13 A1). However, during that past fishing trip, we got completely distracted fishing along the way and never reached our intended destination, i.e., Sevenmile Island and its collection of small log-driving islands. I can spare 1.5 hours this evening to complete my original mission. So, I flee the office early to investigate this spot which has been calling me. I arrive at the Sidney boat launch at 5:15 pm and buzz off at 5:30 pm. I have to use all my will power NOT to stop again along the way like we did last time, but instead to keep motoring forward for about 15 minutes until I reach my final destination three miles downstream from the launch.
In this blog, I describe how I really enjoyed chasing smallmouth bass in the stretch of the Kennebec River flowing for about 1 mile upstream of the boat launch in Sidney, Maine (see The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer map 13 A1). So, I decided to get some more of that action by further exploring the river that flows downstream from the launch. In preparation for this trip, and because the river is an unknown to me, I go on Google Maps the evening before and “fly” over my future fishing grounds looking for potential target areas. And I’m not disappointed! Two sets of structures immediately stand out. The first one are about two dozen small log-driving islands located around one mile downstream of the public access point along the left shoreline of the river. Each island measures about 10 ft by 10 ft and consists of a wooden cribwork filled with large boulders. They were built in the olden days when the Kennebec River was used for driving logs down to the sawmills during the spring snowmelt. Nowadays, they serve as smallmouth bass magnets! The second structure consists of “Seven-Mile Island” located further downstream of the log-driving islands. Both are the focus of our attention this morning.