St. Croix River
Eastern Maine’s St. Croix River comprises a portion of the International Border between Maine and New Brunswick, Canada. It originates in several large lakes, together known as the Chiputneticook Lakes, and flows more than 60 miles south and southeast to Calais and Passamaquoddy Bay. The St. Croix is especially noted for its smallmouth bass fishing.
The upper 33 miles of river, from Vanceboro to Kellyland, provide the opportunity for an excellent multi-day canoe trip through undeveloped forest land. Water stored in the Chiputneticook lakes and released through the dam at the outlet of Spednic Lake make this canoe trip possible from spring through the fall. This upper section is characterized by continuous riffles and rapids, with only a few stretches of smooth water. Road access is limited to only two locations along the way. A number of primitive campsites are strategically located throughout the section, making this an excellent backcountry experience often thought to be available only in Maine’s north woods. Smallmouth bass fishing is excellent throughout this section, and in the Grand Falls Flowage at its end.
In the 21 miles from Kellyland to Calais the lower St. Croix is much larger than it is upstream due to the inflow into Grand Falls Flowage from Big Lake, West Grand Lake, and the series of lakes upstream of West Grand. Releases through the storage dams upstream provide good, season-long flows to this section as well. The 6 miles below Kellyland begin with fast water flowing through undeveloped forest, followed by the flowage backed up by the dam in Woodland. Another stretch of fast water lies below the Woodland dam, followed by the flowage backed up by the Milltown dam.
The lower St. Croix also offers excellent fishing for smallmouth bass. Due to the size of the river it is best fished from a boat or canoe. For anglers not contemplating an extended trip down the lower St. Croix, there is boat access at Woodland Lake.