Weekly Fishing Report

Fishing Conditions & Updates for Maine, New Hampshire & Massachusetts

Week of January 13, 2020

We have ice! Mother Nature has been fickle so far, but the forecast looks good if you like to ice fish. Cold weather is coming. Reports are of favorable fishing and inconsistent ice, but it appears as though the bulk of mild weather is behind us. Smaller ponds and coves on larger waters are the safest bet for access to fishable ice. While you wait for better ice, don’t miss our first ice fishing seminar of the season this Saturday (1/18) at 7PM as professional fishing guide Tim Moore talks Lake Trout Ice Fishing. The seminar will be held in our Katahdin Seminar Room and is free to attend.


Greg at Jordan’s Store in Sebago reported some good salmon catches from Moose Pond. He says reports coming in from Tricky Pond have been on the slow side. “They’re catching some brook trout and splake, but I haven’t heard ay reports of anything big yet,” Greg said. He says that the lower bay on Sebago skimmed over again before the warm spell. He expects that this next batch of cold weather could very well lock the lower bay up for the season.

The folks at James Eddy Smelt Camps in Dresden say that they are up and running, despite the recent warm weather, and that almost everyone is catching their limit. They are only fishing the outgoing tide right now but hope this next cold snap will allow them to put camps up river for the incoming tides.


Fishing guide Tim Moore with a couple of big Winnipesaukee white perch from a recent outing.

Full-time New Hampshire fishing guide Tim from Tim Moore Outdoors reported some very productive ice fishing over the past week. “We have ice,” Tim said. He says ice conditions vary widely and urges anglers to use caution, but reported finding ice as thick as ten inches. He says the warm weather had little effect on the overall ice thickness, but advises anglers to use extreme caution around cracks, pressure ridges, and shoreline structure. That said, he says the fishing has been very good. “We’ve been finding good schools of big white perch, with lake trout mixed in,” he said. Tim says a 1/8-ounce white Blade Spoon or Pinhead Jigging Minnow from Clam Outdoors has been working very well for the white perch, and even catching some lakers. He’s finding most of his fish in around 30-feet of water. He told us that when targeting lake trout, he can’t beat a ¼-ounce purple and chartreuse glow Clam Outdoors Leech Flutter Spoon. Tim was busy getting ready for another group of trips and was excited to announce the addition of a second ice fishing guide, Lake Winnipesaukee veteran guide Shawn Marzerka. He was also looking forward to his upcoming seminar series, which kicks off with a seminar about Lake Trout Ice Fishing on January 18 at 7pm.

Jason at Suds N’ Soda Sports in Greenland told us that the weekend started off busy until the rains came. “Saturday was very busy with ice anglers, but Sunday people were leerier of the ice,” he said. He said the arc of the Lamprey River known as The Moat had five inches to seven inches of ice and was producing some good bass fishing, and the Bellamy Reservoir was fishing well for crappie. Jason also said that Pawtuckaway and Pleasant Lake had been producing fish where anglers could get on fishable ice.

Alan Nute at A.J.’s Bait and Tackle in Meredith reported a busy and productive weekend on Lake Winnipesaukee and the surrounding ponds. “People caught fish. The white perch fishing has been good. I even heard reports of a few limits caught,” Alan said. He says the warm weather melted down the snow, making it easier for anglers on foot to get around. He says the next mass of cold air moving in should really help add some ice and add access to more areas. Alan says weekend hot spots include Cummings Cove, Blacky’s Cover, and Suissevale. He says most of the reports he’s been getting are coming by way of live smelt, but one of his customers reported catching a 10-pound lake trout in Lake Sunapee on one of his bucktail jigs. “The big thing is that we have ice. Folks who live south of us see open water and think there is no ice, but we have it,” he told us.

George Taylor at Taylor’s Trading Post in Madbury says that it was a busy weekend in his area of the state. “I heard reports of people fishing Bellamy, Swains, Baxter, Willand in Dover, just about everywhere in the area”. He says he is hearing reports of ice thicknesses anywhere from five inches to seven inches, depending on where they went.

Because of inherent time restrictions of gathering fresh, up-to-date information, editing & producing this report in a timely manner, occasional errors or marginal information may slip by us. We try our hardest to provide accurate information. We urge readers to use this report as a tool to increase their fishing pleasure and not to rely on as their sole resource. First or second hand information is offered by fishing guides, commercial fishing charters or party boats, bait & tackle dealers, well-known successful anglers and state & federal fisheries and natural resources enforcement officials. We also welcome and use reports forwarded to us by fishermen that use this report. - Kittery Trading Post Fishing Report Editor