For those of the frozen water fraternity there’s no better way to say Happy New Year than with a solid ice fishing report. And best of all with ice-making temperatures predicted for the foreseeable future options are only going to bet better.
New Hampshire Fishing Report
I was pleasantly surprised to hear Jim of AJs Bait in Meredith tell of ice fishing tales already on Lake Winnipesaukee. The Pier 19 section which stretches into the Moultonborough/Wolfeboro is already holding ice fishermen and there have even been reports of Bob Houses out on the ice. This is warm water species territory with the outside possibility of hooking the occasional lake trout. Smaller water has ice with the forecast-friendly prospects of more building. Jim alluded to Wicwas, Winona, Waukewan and Pemmigewassit as all good bets. For a host of salmonoid options its had to top smelt and the shop has them in stock. And with little if no snow impeding ingress/egress to these spots, the conditions are hard to top!
Joe from Granite State Rod and Reel Repair also commented on Winnipesaukee and observed Bob Houses on 19 Mile Bay. Closer to his Nashua New Hampshire shop there are plenty of options such as Mill Pond, Rocky Pond, Round Pond and Potanipo Pond for warm water species while Canobie, Cobbetts and Beaver are best for trout. There is also word of ice in the Connecticut Lakes Region.
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Southern Maine Fishing Report
Tracey’s report, from Dag’s Bait & Sportgoods in Auburn, sounded like a Southern Maine list of pond maps it was so expansive! Brook trout and brown trout were being targeted successfully from water bodies such as Worthley Pond, Tripp Pond, Braniard Pond, Basin Pond, Bartlett Pond and the Ranges! As usual, the Androscoggin River in the Turner stretch has been the top pick for pike as well as panfish. The Andro should have competition soon once Lake Sabattus catches. Regarding the smelt shacks of the estuaries in Maine, look for the Gardiner section camps to trot out their shacks soon.
Renee from Sebago Bait said hardly a day goes by when she’s not getting a call looking for a safe ice report on Sebago! While that ice fishing gem has a while to go before it catches, the supporting cast of smaller water bodies are keeping anglers preoccupied. Trout are the talk among anglers fishing the Otter Ponds and Pettengill Pond and with a favorable forecast at our doorstep look for that list to grow in lockstep with the ice. Look for Little Sebago to lock up soon!
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New Hampshire And Southern Maine Fishing Forecast
For those looking to add a dash of salt to their fishing, Eastman’s Deep Sea Fishing Fleet has been setting sail when weather permits and I’ve head that the haddock bite is hot. While more brine than full-on salt, plans are being hatched now among some of the smelt shacks in the Merrymeeting Bay/Kennebec River area. While a plethora of smaller ponds have ice, the wait is on for bigger lakes to lock up with the Moultonborough/Wolfeboro section of Winnipesaukee the exception. There you’ll find the rarest of conditions: recent ice and little snow!