Articles by Tom Hennessey

Feathers ‘n Fins

Smallmouth only a part of a day on the river

By Tom Hennessey on Sept. 04, 2011, at 7:58 p.m.
The sky was layered with leaden clouds as Jim Martin and I slid the boat from the bed of his truck. The veteran outdoorsman designed and built the Fiberglas 16-footer whose wide beam and shallow draft made it a versatile river boat. Thus, it can be rowed, paddled, poled or …

Musings on modern-day gear

By Tom Hennessey on Aug. 05, 2011, at 4:28 p.m.
If you’re among the gray-haired guardians of Maine’s symbolic outdoor traditions it’s likely that you’ve spent some time musing about the changes you’ve seen in sporting equipment. For instance, did you ever imagine that the ribbed-and-planked, canvas-covered boats and canoes that contributed so memorably to your addiction to the outdoors …

Feathers ‘n Fins, July 2: Bassy

By Tom Hennessey on July 01, 2011, at 5:39 p.m.
No sooner had the late Carroll Soucie eased the boat into the foam line trailing from The Spindle, a Penobscot River navigational marker just below Bald Hill Cove in Winterport, than a striped bass swatted my trolled streamer. I don’t know how many stripers “Soose” and I caught on that long-ago …

Spring fishing as tradition

By Tom Hennessey on June 03, 2011, at 4:43 p.m.
Notice: My new email address is Trust me in saying the tradition of spring fishing is a tyrant at West Grand Lake. Testimony to that was the number of boats on the water when Steve Forrest and I recently set off in his glossy 20-foot Grand Laker. The head guide …
Feathers 'n Fins

Fly fishing used to mean trolling a streamer

By Tom Hennessey on May 06, 2011, at 11:23 p.m.
Chances are you can remember when the term “fly fishing” meant trolling streamers, particularly for landlocked salmon soon after ice-out. Mention fly fishing nowadays, though, and the erudite alumni of fly-fishing schools and clinics will assume you’re referring to fly casting. Considering the changing times that’s not surprising. However, I …
Ice out

Feathers ‘n Fins

By Tom Hennessey on April 02, 2011, at 2:05 p.m.
Except for brooks and streams broad-shouldered with runoff, there were few opportunities for anglers to wet a line yesterday, the start of Maine’s open-water fishing season. Nevertheless, anglers addicted to trolling are making ready for spring fishing on lakes and ponds by fussing with boats, motors, trailers and tackle. To …
Feathers 'n Fins

March trails lead to spring

By Tom Hennessey on March 04, 2011, at 2:31 p.m.
In spite of March’s volatile and very annoying mood swings, I welcome this month’s arrival for two special reasons. One being that March’s still-wintry trails lead to the first day of spring, the other being the long-awaited signs pointing in that direction. Assuming, then, that you’re tired of shoveling and …
Maine's Ice Age

Little remains from when ice was state’s largest cash crop

By Tom Hennessey on Feb. 14, 2011, at 6:16 p.m.
It’s no small wonder that the wild and woolly mid-to late 1800s era of logging that earned Bangor the title “Lumber Capital of the World” is well-chronicled in Maine’s colorful history. Yet, relatively scant mention is made of the late 1800s-early 1900s era that produced what was once the state’s …
Tom Hennessey for Jan 1, 2011

Feathers ‘n Fins

By Tom Hennessey on Dec. 31, 2010, at 7:15 p.m.
Suffice it to say, the current shortage of eider ducks along Maine’s coast was discussed at length during a recent meeting of the Gouldsboro Point Good Times Rod and Gun Club. Embellished with …

Feathers ‘n Fins

By Tom Hennessey on Dec. 03, 2010, at 10:10 p.m.
Tucked away in the private clutter of my pack basket is a pair of moth-eaten wool mittens covered with cracked leather shells. The mittens, knitted by my grandmother, and the shells — commonly …

Feathers ‘n Fins

By Tom Hennessey on Nov. 05, 2010, at 9:12 p.m.
Pour yourself a second cup of coffee and I’ll tell you about my recent brush with the law. Murphy’s Law, that is. It happened early in duck season, when my son, Jeff, and I were jump-shooting on …

Feathers ’n Fins

By Tom Hennessey on Oct. 08, 2010, at 6:38 p.m.
As can be imagined, discussions about the merits of side-by-side and over-under doubles are swayed by tradition and prejudice. Fanciers of the over-under, for instance, remind that their guns …
Tom Hennessey for outdoors page Oct. 2, 2010

Side-by-side or over-under? Bird hunters debate merits of double-barreled shotguns

By Tom Hennessey on Oct. 02, 2010, at 1:05 p.m.
Among hunters who follow dogs’ bells through thickets of briar and thorn apple, the consensus is that there is no better bird gun than a double barrel. Considering, however, that doubles are built in side-by-side and over-under models, it’s not surprising that opinions differ as to which is best for snapshooting at feathered missiles launched in thick covers.
Tom Hennessey for OUTDOORS

Bird hunters debate merits of guns

By Tom Hennessey on Oct. 01, 2010, at 6:53 p.m.
Among hunters who follow dogs’ bells through thickets of briar and thorn apple, the consensus is that there is no better bird gun than a double barrel. Considering, however, that doubles are built …
Tom Hennessey for OUTDOORS

Feathers ‘n Fins for Sept. 4-5

By Tom Hennessey on Sept. 03, 2010, at 7:06 p.m.
Excepting mothers whose kids are back to school, I don’t know of anyone more appreciative of September than hunters addicted to gun dogs. Allowing, then, that you have an English setter or a Labrador retriever, or both, tell me you’re not invigorated by the sight of sumacs and swamp maples …
Tom Hennessey column for August 7, 2010

Feathers ’n Fins for August 7-8

By Tom Hennessey on Aug. 06, 2010, at 7:35 p.m.
As a teenager addicted to hunting, fishing and everything in between, I sometimes got the feeling that the adage “Fools rush in where angels fear to tread” was aimed directly at me. With that in …

Feathers ’n Fins for July 3-4

By Tom Hennessey on July 02, 2010, at 8:11 p.m.
Like the Atlantic salmon returning to New Brunswick’s Kedgwick River, the nine anglers who arrived at the Kedgwick Salmon Club recently were disappointed, but not discouraged, to see that the river’s ribs were showing.

From the BDN Archive: Guide Bob Lawrence shares expertise on the eve of 13th annual season

By Tom Hennessey on June 16, 2010, at 1:44 p.m.
Where a wind-toppled spruce leaned on the shoulder of a shadow-paved woods road, Bob Lawrence of Rockwood slowed the pickup to a stop.

From the BDN Archive: Maine’s moose hunt attracts crowds of onlookers

By Tom Hennessey on June 16, 2010, at 1:40 p.m.
Monday’s gunmetal-gray sky and raw northwest wind failed to cool the interest of the crowd gathered at the Greenville tagging station on the opening day of Maine’s one-week moose hunt.

From the BDN Archive: Many older hunters appreciate Maine moose hunt

By Tom Hennessey on June 16, 2010, at 1:38 p.m.
In spite of the carpings of the few, the many hereabouts realize the multi-faceted benefits of Maine’s annual one-week moose hunt are as attractive as the fall foliage.
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