Maine’s hardwater season begins on many lakes and ponds upon the arrival of safe ice. The current trend in global temperatures indicates the ice on Maine’s waters is arriving later and departing earlier. In recent years, the beginning of January often marks the earliest many anglers develop enough confidence to venture out onto the ice. Though obvious care must be taken at all times of year, those critical times near the beginning and end of the ice fishing season mark times when the ice is notoriously unstable. Pond edging choked with cattails and marsh grass, tend to attract much more thermal radiation than clear ice, making crossing these areas dangerous, even after long spells of below freezing temperatures.
Maine boasts a vast number of lakes and ponds that beckon anglers to fish their waters. While I love catching big fish, there also exists a part of me that relishes exploring waters providing nonstop flag-popping action. These destinations offer tons of fun for anglers of all ages, and no better way exists to hook someone new or a child into fishing, as taking them to a spot where the fish are really biting.
Having a great day on the ice is about having fun, being safe and also being comfortable. The older I get, the harder is seems to maintain the same level of excitement and enthusiasm as I once did in my youth, at the prospects of waking before dawn, stumbling into the deep freeze and driving to my favorite ice fishing destination. To combat this problem and continue to enjoy one of my favorite pastimes, I have begun to become very efficient in my expenditure of energy when ice fishing. This includes bringing hot food and drink, a chair, portable ice shack, and on cold days even a heater. These key pieces of equipment ensure that even on the coldest and most brutal of days ice fishing, I can stay warm, dry and comfortable, conserving my mental and physical energy and increasing my enjoyment of the experience and the length of time I am able to stay on the ice. Having small children makes these pieces of equipment almost mandatory, as they provide kids with a sheltered spot to warm cold fingers and toes and drink their hot cocoa. As you head out to the ice this winter season, consider reviewing your ice fishing activities for efficiency, as it may mean you spend more time on the ice and catch more fish.
A reporter from TV station WCSH joined me on an early morning ice fishing excursion on Three Mile Pond in Vassalboro recently. Check out the videos here.
Hiking Lead Mountain, Exploring Beddington Lake and Camping at McClellan Park
Lead Mountain A few miles off Rt. 9, stands the relatively diminutive 1,479 ft. Lead Mountain...