The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife regularly compiles a fishing report that provides insight into fishing conditions around the state. Here is the most recent report.
In the Down East area, now is a great time to fish for white perch.
“Right now the white perch are really schooling up and can be found in different pockets in your favorite lake. Try some live bait or jigs,” said DIF&W fisheries biologist Greg Burr.
Burr also noted that it is a good time of the year to target togue and salmon, as they are somewhat contained as well, right below the thermocline.
The barrier between cold water and warm water, known as the thermocline, can vary from lake to lake, but for the most part, it occurs somewhere between 25 and 30 feet in larger lakes, and sometimes it can be as deep as 35 feet.
Trout anglers are having success in smaller ponds fishing the thermocline there. In small ponds, the thermocline can be a little shallower, often between 10 and 17 feet.
“Fly casters are having success at Little Pond in Franklin, which is fly fishing only, and catch and release. It’s a neat little hike in. Anglers are letting their lines sink to below the thermocline and getting some nice trout,” said Burr.
Anglers are still catching bass, just a little deeper this time of year. Try near the edges of weedbeds where there are drop-offs, or wait until the evening and cast some surface lures into the same area.
(Submitted by biologist Tim Obrey)
As July winds down, the fishing gets a little tougher. Salmon and lake trout are heading to depths below the thermocline in our larger lakes. Brook trout will get picky as the water warms and the hatches taper off.
Trolling probably offers the best chance, especially in larger waters. We’ve had scattered reports from Moosehead Lake which indicate the fishing is hit or miss. Some anglers, particularly in the Rockwood area, are still able to find some cooperative fish down deep.
While the fishing is slowing down, our work hasn’t. This time of year we are very busy evaluating our lake trout waters. We’ve handled a number of nice fish in the Moosehead Lake region this summer.
We are also gearing up for the busy fall season and we plan to operate our fish weir on Wilson Stream, a tributary to Sebec Lake, this fall to evaluate the wild salmon population on one of Maine’s original salmon lakes. It will be a very interesting project, as we hope to further evaluate the conditions which provide the best chance for these fish to pass over several falls on their way to reach their spawning grounds.
Looking to catch some trout? You ought to take a visit to Baxter State Park. This summer, Region F crews have been in the park doing surveys of several ponds.
“We went into Basin Pond, which we hadn’t surveyed in a while. It still has a thriving population of brook trout. It’s a couple of miles in, and it doesn’t get much fishing pressure. The water is gin clear and you can see bottom down to 30 feet,” said Nels Kramer, DIF&W fisheries biologist.
Over on Daicey, the surveys showed a healthy brook trout population, with nice fish over 16 inches.
Lost Pond revealed similar results, with very fat trout up to sixteen inches. Kramer noted that there still were some hex hatches occurring on Lost Pond, but felt they might be over by now.
One of the appeals to fishing in the park is that some of the ponds have canoes that you can rent for a dollar an hour. Some ponds, like Daicey, have canoes on the rack that you can use. More remote ponds have canoes that are locked. Check with the ranger station for availability at the pond you would like to fish.
“It’s a tremendous resource all throughout the park. You can’t beat a dollar an hour to rent a canoe, plus you get gorgeous scenery and some great fishing,” said Kramer.
Up north, the water has heated up, but there are still trout to be caught.
“Trout ponds are still offering hot fishing during the evening hatches, as long as anglers can find the right fly to match the hatch,” said Jeremiah Wood, DIF&W fisheries biologist.
“Daytime fishing in these areas has been slow. In many of the ponds, trout are feeding on midge larvae and scuds near the bottom and they can be difficult to catch.”
If you are looking to fish the rivers and streams, look for places with cool tributaries or areas that are spring fed. Otherwise, the river fishing has slowed right down.
On the larger lakes and ponds in the Fish River chain of lakes, folks are having success trolling deep, but Wood says generally you need to be 30 to 50 feet down in the water column.
Of course, this time of year is prime time to fish smaller brooks and streams.
“Anglers would be well served to bring a pocket thermometer on their fishing trips. Any stream in the area that is below 70 degrees should produce trout,” said Wood.