From its origin at Moosehead Lake for more than 100 miles downstream to the head of tide in Augusta the Kennebec River flows through the heart of Maine. It supports a variety of game fish species, and diverse opportunities to fish for and catch them.
The Upper Kennebec: Moosehead Lake to Solon
The pools and runs in the 3 miles of the East Outlet from Moosehead Lake to Indian Pond are well known by fly fishermen for season-long fisheries for both stocked and wild landlocked salmon and brook trout. Wading is the most popular method in the East Outlet, though fishing from drift boats is increasing in popularity. At high flows a drift boat can provide access to water not reachable by wading in this 200 foot wide river.
Moosehead Lake’s West Outlet is smaller with much less flow than in the East Outlet. Here is a chance for an easy 7-mile canoe trip through undeveloped forest land down to Indian Pond, and a great way to spend a day fishing for stocked brook trout or resident smallmouth bass.
Below Indian Pond, the Kennebec flows for 19 miles to Wyman Lake. This entire section supports wild populations of landlocked salmon and brook trout. Flows vary with releases from Harris Dam at the Outlet of Indian Pond, so anglers should pay close attention to what the river is doing and be prepared to react accordingly. The uppermost reaches flow through a deep gorge noted more for its whitewater rafting than for its fishing. Access into the gorge is limited. Below the gorge the gradient moderates, and although access to the river is still limited, there is more opportunity to fish this forested, undeveloped stretch. Route 201 follows closely the lower 9 miles, from The Forks where the Dead River enters the Kennebec, down to Wyman Lake. This section is easily accessible for wading anglers, and may be fished by floating in a canoe.
The Kennebec below Wyman Dam in Bingham is also known for wild salmonids: landlocked salmon, brook trout, and rainbow trout. Wading and casting from shore are possible in the 3-mile section immediately below Wyman Dam. A boat or canoe is required to effectively fish the flowage area comprising the remaining 5 miles above the Solon Dam.
The Lower Kennebec: Solon to Augusta
From Solon to Waterville the Kennebec River alternates between short stretches of fast water immediately below each of the five dams on this 47-mile section, to longer stretches of flowage above the next dam immediately downstream. In the upper 14 miles from Solon toMadison fishing is for both wild and stocked landlocked salmon, brook trout, and brown trout. Below Madison anglers will find populations of brook trout, landlocked salmon, and brown trout supported by annual stocking. Resident populations of smallmouth bass are also found throughout the river below Madison. They provide excellent action all season long, especially in each of the flowage areas.
The Kennebec River now flows unobstructed for 17 miles from the lower dam in Waterville to tidewater. Between Waterville and Augusta the river lies in a deep valley that is forested along both sides, and undeveloped on its slopes down to the water. Access for launching and taking out watercraft to travel this section is limited to three locations — in Waterville, Sidney, and Augusta. Although boaters travel through a very populated area of Maine, while on the river they are isolated from the human activity on the farms, the roads, and in the developments found above this valley. In addition to landlocked salmon and brown trout stocked in this section, and the resident population of smallmouth bass, anadromous shad and striped bass now swim all the way upstream to Waterville from the sea, providing new and exciting angling opportunities. This is an extraordinary natural resource, located only minutes from the State’s Capitol.