AUGUSTA, Maine — The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife opened two new boating access facilities recently, providing anglers and boaters with expanded recreational opportunities in northern and Down East parts of the state, according to a DIF&W press release.
“Access to the waters of this magnificent state is a priority for Governor [Paul] LePage and this department,” said Chandler E. Woodcock, commissioner of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. “Maine is blessed with thousands of waterways, yet access is limited on many of them. We are pleased to restore access Down East and provide another option for access along the 420-mile long St. John River.”
The two new locations include Bog Lake in Northfield (Washington County) and the St. John River in Grand Isle (Aroostook County).
Bog Lake provides a warm water fishery for bass, and until recently, also provided a very good cold water fishery for landlocked salmon and brown trout. Anglers used to access Bog Lake via a private gravel launch area, but when that property was sold, the new owners closed the launch in 2000. With no public access to Bog Lake, the salmon and brown trout stocking program was discontinued.
Due to the fishery’s potential and access inequities (lakeside camp owners had access through private launches on the lake), restoring access to Bog Lake became a priority for DIF&W regional staff Down East.
Crews broke ground this spring, and the launch opened on Sept. 26. The DIF&W stocked Bog Lake with landlocked salmon this spring.
“The town is very supportive, and is a welcome partner in this access project,” said Commissioner Woodcock.
Bog Lake is 826 acres in size, and has a maximum depth of 46 feet. The launch is located right off Route 192 just north of Frenning Point in Northfield.
Funds for the project came from the US Fish and Wildlife Service Sport Fish Restoration Act, as well as funds from the Maine Sportsman’s license plate and the state gasoline sales tax.