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A wee Maine fishing trip


ol'crickety

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Okay, so I loaded the canoe one more time because I couldn't stand wasting a warm day. Driving to the pond is one of the best parts of the day, for there's so much SUGAH!* I passed three general stores that look and operate as if it were 1922 instead of 2022. Then I saw the cows** used to make Maine's Whoopie Pies***, as well as Oreo cookies. Finally, the pond. It is right off the highway. You launch from a cobbled dam and worm your way through weeds to the pond. I paddled up one side of the pond and caught 33 fish. 

 

"This is going to be a great day!" I thought.

 

Then I paddled down the other side of the pond and caught three fish.

 

"This is a great day!" I thought.

 

I caught one smallmouth, two pickerels, and 32 largemouth. None were big, but I will fish this pond again. It only has two homes on it, which is how I like 'em.

 

The last fish is crazy skinny, huh? I caught most of the fish on a chrome Whopper Plopper. I caught one on a Mepps size 4, two on a Wake Bait, one of a bluegill-colored crankbait, two on a shad-colored crankbait, and the rest on the Whopper Plopper. That's what they wanted, even though I kept trying other lures.

 

*sugar maples

 

**They're actually Scottish Belted Galloways, which are pretty common in Maine.

 

***Whoopie Pies look like giant Oreo cookies.

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Awesome job Katie loved reading your report!

 

That's exactly what a guy from Alabama imagines Maine looking like.   

 

35 Bass is a ton of fish, that's like a week worth of fishing for me.   

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Those pics without the fish are beautiful enough to do up a report ?. It’s days like that, that make we want to call in sick more often this time of year ( did I mention I’m self employed) ?

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Alex, the photos I took have Maine looking a lot like Vermont, but Maine is mostly trees. We have more trees than any other state. We also have more coastline than California with all our indentations. So, we're trees and waves crashing into cliffs. 

 

AND BASS!

 

Thanks, Mr. Bass and Mr. 5/0. 

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3 hours ago, AlabamaSpothunter said:

Awesome job Katie loved reading your report!

 

That's exactly what a guy from Alabama imagines Maine looking like.   

 

35 Bass is a ton of fish, that's like a week worth of fishing for me.   

Insert Illinois where it reads Alabama and I couldn’t have said it any better than this?

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What a great day! The description of your drive reminded me of our trip out there 7-8 years ago. Beautiful part of the country and all those bass and isolated ponds make it that much better.

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Norcal, the thing I loved about yesterday's pond was the vast flats of lily pads. It's too late for froggin', but the thoughts of fishing those pads next year already has me whining like a puppy for her favorite toy. I didn't catch any big fish yesterday, but that's been my story all fall, so I'm thinking there might be bigger fish there. We'll see!

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18 hours ago, ol'crickety said:

Okay, so I loaded the canoe one more time because I couldn't stand wasting a warm day. Driving to the pond is one of the best parts of the day, for there's so much SUGAH!* I passed three general stores that look and operate as if it were 1922 instead of 2022. Then I saw the cows** used to make Maine's Whoopie Pies***, as well as Oreo cookies. Finally, the pond. It is right off the highway. You launch from a cobbled dam and worm your way through weeds to the pond. I paddled up one side of the pond and caught 33 fish. 

 

"This is going to be a great day!" I thought.

 

Then I paddled down the other side of the pond and caught three fish.

 

"This is a great day!" I thought.

 

I caught one smallmouth, two pickerels, and 32 largemouth. None were big, but I will fish this pond again. It only has two homes on it, which is how I like 'em.

 

The last fish is crazy skinny, huh? I caught most of the fish on a chrome Whopper Plopper. I caught one on a Mepps size 4, two on a Wake Bait, one of a bluegill-colored crankbait, two on a shad-colored crankbait, and the rest on the Whopper Plopper. That's what they wanted, even though I kept trying other lures.

 

*sugar maples

 

**They're actually Scottish Belted Galloways, which are pretty common in Maine.

 

***Whoopie Pies look like giant Oreo cookies.

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Cows!.jpg

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That water looks crystal clear. Is it, or just my perception? Thanks for the post. Now I'm daydreaming about Maine ponds while I avoid working! What part of Maine? I have never been there.

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18 minutes ago, Blue Raider Bob said:

That water looks crystal clear. Is it, or just my perception? Thanks for the post. Now I'm daydreaming about Maine ponds while I avoid working! What part of Maine? I have never been there.

It's gin clear, so clear that I look over the side of my canoe and it looks a foot deep. I'm always testing depth with my paddle.*

 

I was fishing close to Camden yesterday, which is called mid-coast. Camden is where Peyton Place was filmed because it's considered the quintessential New England town. Google Camden. It's ridiculously pretty. Its harbor is filled with 1800s sailing ships and it has twin waterfalls tumbling into that harbor, with a mountain as a backdrop. 

 

*Testing depth with a paddle is high tech in Maine. We're behind the times and we like it that way!

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Good grief! There are ponds all over the place. One is even called FISH pond! Now I'm really ruint (as we say down here). And all the boats in the Harbor at Camden. Boy I sure would like to make it that way someday but it is a long drive from Tennessee. Our fishing opportunities are much more limited. It's all rock and Western Cedar trees. Anyplace that has dirt is growing crops or grazing cattle.

My paddle used to be my depth finder in the swamps back home. Anything over paddle depth was "Deep water"!  And we sure couldn't see the bottom. Nowadays I depend on my livescope. Can't fish without it. What is your favorite pond? I would like to spy on it with Google Earth!

Just now, Blue Raider Bob said:

Good grief! There are ponds all over the place. One is even called FISH pond! Now I'm really ruint (as we say down here). And all the boats in the Harbor at Camden. Boy I sure would like to make it that way someday but it is a long drive from Tennessee. Our fishing opportunities are much more limited. It's all rock and Western Cedar trees. Anyplace that has dirt is growing crops or grazing cattle.

My paddle used to be my depth finder in the swamps back home. Anything over paddle depth was "Deep water"!  And we sure couldn't see the bottom. Nowadays I depend on my livescope. Can't fish without it. What is your favorite pond? I would like to spy on it with Google Earth!

meant Eastern Cedar but I'm so tore up over Maine that I can't speak!

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Yeah, Bob, we're freckled with water. I actually fished Fish Pond yesterday. That was my first visit. According to Maine Fish and Wildlife, Fish Pond has a boat ramp maintained by the local Fish and Game Club. However, that info about the boat ramp is 21 years old and I'm guessing the codgers who maintained that boat ramp are dead or watching "The Price is Right" in a nursing home nowadays, because what I saw yesterday morning is too shallow, weed-choked, and muddy to launch any boat bigger than a canoe. And thank goodness for that, for limited access means more strike-happy bass.

 

Grassy Pond is nearby. That too looks promising. I've added it to my list of water to fish next year. 

 

Google Upper Mason Pond.That's real close to my home. It's so weed-choked that I can only use surface lures,* but it's good for 35 or so bass every morning or evening with the chance of a 19-inch plus bass. Like Fish Pond, it has a parking lot, but it's only canoe-launchable, which really limits interest in a pond because canoeing is work. What most people don't realize is that canoeing is also play. They are nifty, nimble boats, perfect for slipping through reeds in search of enough of an opening to cast. 

 

Lower Mason also holds hogs, as well as jumbo perch. I've never seen anyone else fishing them. They're just three of the dozen ponds I fished this year. I plan to fish another dozen next year.

 

I'm super excited to fish Carlton Bog next spring. It's only spring-fishable with the snow melt, but it's huge and weedy. I scouted it and it looks wonderful. 

 

*Even stretches of what appears to be open water have weeds right below the surface. 

 

P.S. - I didn't even know what LiveScope was until I googled it a few days ago. Again, paddle sonar is high tech up here. 

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3 hours ago, ol'crickety said:

Yeah, Bob, we're freckled with water. I actually fished Fish Pond yesterday. That was my first visit. According to Maine Fish and Wildlife, Fish Pond has a boat ramp maintained by the local Fish and Game Club. However, that info about the boat ramp is 21 years old and I'm guessing the codgers who maintained that boat ramp are dead or watching "The Price is Right" in a nursing home nowadays, because what I saw yesterday morning is too shallow, weed-choked, and muddy to launch any boat bigger than a canoe. And thank goodness for that, for limited access means more strike-happy bass.

 

Grassy Pond is nearby. That too looks promising. I've added it to my list of water to fish next year. 

 

Google Upper Mason Pond.That's real close to my home. It's so weed-choked that I can only use surface lures,* but it's good for 35 or so bass every morning or evening with the chance of a 19-inch plus bass. Like Fish Pond, it has a parking lot, but it's only canoe-launchable, which really limits interest in a pond because canoeing is work. What most people don't realize is that canoeing is also play. They are nifty, nimble boats, perfect for slipping through reeds in search of enough of an opening to cast. 

 

Lower Mason also holds hogs, as well as jumbo perch. I've never seen anyone else fishing them. They're just three of the dozen ponds I fished this year. I plan to fish another dozen next year.

 

I'm super excited to fish Carlton Bog next spring. It's only spring-fishable with the snow melt, but it's huge and weedy. I scouted it and it looks wonderful. 

 

*Even stretches of what appears to be open water have weeds right below the surface. 

 

P.S. - I didn't even know what LiveScope was until I googled it a few days ago. Again, paddle sonar is high tech up here. 

What a fisherperson's paradise! Thanks for the info! I've spent the last thirty minutes cruising along the ponds between Belfast and Camden. Amazing number of ponds to fish and the ocean nearbye. I'm very envious! Might have to play hookey tomorrow and head for the river.....sounds like a plan!

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What's cool, Bob, is that the rivers are filling with striped bass too, coming up to our warmer and warmer Gulf of Mexico. We even had a great white shark death a summer back.

 

If you get a chance, cruise the ponds and lakes of Aroostook County, which Mainers call "the county." It's the top third of Maine and it is loaded with water holding smallmouth, brook trout, and landlocked salmon. I'm sure many of its smaller bodies of water never see a fisher all summer. The ponds of "the county" would make the water I fish look as busy as 5th Ave. at rush hour. I'm going to mosey up there soon and cast to those utterly wild fish.

 

Do play hooky! 

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On 10/13/2022 at 7:53 AM, ol'crickety said:

Norcal, the thing I loved about yesterday's pond was the vast flats of lily pads. It's too late for froggin', but the thoughts of fishing those pads next year already has me whining like a puppy for her favorite toy. I didn't catch any big fish yesterday, but that's been my story all fall, so I'm thinking there might be bigger fish there. We'll see!

Why is it to late for froggin'?

The bass don't know the frogs hibernate? Have you tried and just not gotten strikes?

Just wondering........can't get enough of Google Earth and the many ponds and lakes of Maine! Went to Zillow and wow those properties are expensive. Half a mill for a lake lot at Rangley.

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Bob, I was steadily froggin' and getting hits on just about every other cast (I didn't catch most of those bass.). Then, one day, nada. I tried a couple more times and still zip. So, I quit.

 

Yeah, we have a wealth of water and bass aren't even the top prize here. Brookies and landlocked Atlantic salmon are. 

 

And, yes, it can be pricey. That's because rich New Yorkers and Bostonians buy their summer homes here. However,  there are affordable properties too. I bought my five wooded acres with a 2,000 square foot house for $243,000 just 1.5 years ago and I'm close enough to the ocean to smell it and feel it. 

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Heck, yeah! I do too. I caught 41 this morning, just three miles from my house. So. Much. Fun!

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On 10/14/2022 at 10:31 AM, ol'crickety said:

Bob, I was steadily froggin' and getting hits on just about every other cast (I didn't catch most of those bass.). Then, one day, nada. I tried a couple more times and still zip. So, I quit.

 

Yeah, we have a wealth of water and bass aren't even the top prize here. Brookies and landlocked Atlantic salmon are. 

 

And, yes, it can be pricey. That's because rich New Yorkers and Bostonians buy their summer homes here. However,  there are affordable properties too. I bought my five wooded acres with a 2,000 square foot house for $243,000 just 1.5 years ago and I'm close enough to the ocean to smell it and feel it. 

That is an awesome purchase! Five acres and a good size house for that price is a steal! Way to go! Five acres is big enough to put in your own pond like I did! My pond is 2/3 acre with a floating dock. Look closely and you will see an otter using my dock to sun himself and digest my fish!

Our temps are a bit higher hear and I have a 1 acre farm pond that I can drive a tractor to that is about a mile away. I caught four LM Sunday PM on the Zman ToadZ and lost twice that many as I temporarily escaped farm work!

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I love, love, LOVE your floating dock. I also love that the otter loves it too. 

 

Maine isn't all beautiful bogs and ponds. I scouted a smallmouth pond this morning and the road to it bristled with junk cars, abandoned trailers, and signs threatening death and mutilation by guns and dogs. It's the sort of road that inspired Mainer Steven King. Think about your beautiful pond. Now think about the exact opposite of that and that's what I saw. It's a pond I'll never fish. 

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37 minutes ago, ol'crickety said:

I love, love, LOVE your floating dock. I also love that the otter loves it too. 

 

Maine isn't all beautiful bogs and ponds. I scouted a smallmouth pond this morning and the road to it bristled with junk cars, abandoned trailers, and signs threatening death and mutilation by guns and dogs. It's the sort of road that inspired Mainer Steven King. Think about your beautiful pond. Now think about the exact opposite of that and that's what I saw. It's a pond I'll never fish. 

We have those as well! Don't have a picture but down the road from us is a driveway sign that reads...(Tresspassers will be shot! Survivors will be shot AGAIN!) I don't go down that drive!

 

The otters were an exciting novelty at first..........until my dog started bringing me bass skulls....ouch! They were living under my dock where they could get between the floor joists. How can they catch these fish???? We all know how fast a bass is. I watch them explode after bluegill when I throw in fish food. They go from zero to GONE!!! In an instant, and it seems to me the bluegill are even faster! How do the otters catch them?

Anyway I pulled up my deck boards and found piles of scales and skulls, so I framed in all the joist openings to discourage the otters. It worked and now they drop by occasionally but do not stay. Got tired of sweeping piles of fish scales and ...you know what... off my dock. Had a couple of beavers stop by for a day but my pond didn't fill their needs.

 

Couple more dock pictures. You guys know lots about the white stuff but we rarely get a snowfall. The other is the ceiling of my floating dock, I know it's over the top but I like to build stuff. Finally is my observation hole. One day I was kicked back relaxing and an otter came flying up through this hole onto the deck. We both jumped out of our skins! He scared the....out of me and I did the same to him. He did a 180 and was back in the pond before I could grab a camera. I drop fish pellets in the hole and get good views of my scaly friends!

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1 hour ago, Blue Raider Bob said:

We have those as well! Don't have a picture but down the road from us is a driveway sign that reads...(Tresspassers will be shot! Survivors will be shot AGAIN!) I don't go down that drive!

 

The otters were an exciting novelty at first..........until my dog started bringing me bass skulls....ouch! They were living under my dock where they could get between the floor joists. How can they catch these fish???? We all know how fast a bass is. I watch them explode after bluegill when I throw in fish food. They go from zero to GONE!!! In an instant, and it seems to me the bluegill are even faster! How do the otters catch them?

Anyway I pulled up my deck boards and found piles of scales and skulls, so I framed in all the joist openings to discourage the otters. It worked and now they drop by occasionally but do not stay. Got tired of sweeping piles of fish scales and ...you know what... off my dock. Had a couple of beavers stop by for a day but my pond didn't fill their needs.

 

Couple more dock pictures. You guys know lots about the white stuff but we rarely get a snowfall. The other is the ceiling of my floating dock, I know it's over the top but I like to build stuff. Finally is my observation hole. One day I was kicked back relaxing and an otter came flying up through this hole onto the deck. We both jumped out of our skins! He scared the....out of me and I did the same to him. He did a 180 and was back in the pond before I could grab a camera. I drop fish pellets in the hole and get good views of my scaly friends!

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I could write a novel on how awesome your dock is but all I’m going to say is, That is freaking awesome!!!!! As a former framing carpenter I really appreciate your time and eye for detail ?? As far as your otter story I’m glad I wasn’t drinking anything when I read that as my phone would be covered?

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I have been taking trips to maine since 2019, the open water fishing is very abundant, but ice fishing is cold and bleak. I know guys do it and have success, but it is not easy. The local knowledge probably goes further in ice fishing. Some bass, some cold skunks to. I have seen some real misery out there. Anyways my point is if you live in Maine year round, maybe take up skiing.

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Bob, you don't just live in Heaven; YOU BUILT HEAVEN!

 

It's so cool to see the depth of fellow fishers. I'm a hard worker too and they say that game knows game in sports, well, hard work knows hard work. You're creative too. I love your fish viewing hole and I love your otter stories. I also love that you feed your fish. 

 

Since you shared a winter shot, I'll share one of one of my winter gardens. The raised beds are limestone. The pathways are rose quartz. It has a secret garden in one corner and a tea garden in another, which you can't see. I used architectural elements from Victorian houses, and I laid three patios and two paver sidewalks. My current garden under construction is much bigger and the garden between the one in the photo and the current one was featured in Maine Woman magazine. I do 99% of the work myself. The only work I can't do are the big boulders and I have to hire a man and a machine to lift those. I just built five raised beds from Hemlock for my current garden and like the garden in the photo, it also a secret section, which is a Japanese garden. 

 

Jeremy, I've designed my Maine garden to ease me through the winter. I built two mounded beds in front of my house. One is planted with red twig dogwoods, with branches that grow redder the colder it grows. The other is planted with yellow twig dogwoods, which turn gold in the cold. My driveway is lined with Paperbark maples, which at their most beautiful in the winter with their cinnamon and salmon-colored exfoliating bark and I've also planted over a hundred evergreens. 

 

Eric, I like what you wrote!

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P.S. - Included a summer shot of the same garden too! I think it's funny how men and women react differently to my gardens.

 

Women say, "It's so beautiful!"

 

Men are quiet at first as they scan the garden and then they say, "This. was. a. lot. of. work." 

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