Weekly Fishing Report
Fishing Conditions & Updates for Maine, New Hampshire & Massachusetts
Week of October 9, 2019
This will be our final report of the year. We’d like to thank everyone who followed along this year. We hope these reports have helped plan adventures that resulted in memories made. As for the rest of the year, there is never a bad time to go fishing. Fall provides some unique opportunities that can only be had at this time of year. Whether it’s black crappie, salmon (where open), striped bass (while they’re still here), or trout (in local rivers and streams), there is no shortage of chances to get out and wet a line. Be cautious of regulations, as many change in the fall, and have fun. See you the first week of January!
Greg at Jordan’s Store in Sebago reported some very good catches of lake trout as of late. “A friend of mine went out yesterday, and he caught 28 lake trout,” he said. He says there is an abundance of bait in Sebago right now around the southern side of the river, off of the drop off. Greg wanted to remind anglers that salmon fishing is now catch and release only, but lake trout is open to taking all year. Greg says the salmon that are being caught are bigger than they were in the spring, so there is some growth happening.
Dave Garcia at Naples Bait and Tackle in Naples says he fished Thompson Lake recently and the smallmouth bass bite was strong. He says the fish were still in deeper (around 15-feet) water and were biting anything that looked like a crawfish. “The fish are definitely in feeding mode,” he said. He says Pleasant Pond in Litchfield has been producing strong numbers of crappies lately. He says a 2” soft plastic paddletail on a small jig head works well right now. Dave says the rivers are beginning to show a few salmon, but the water is still low. “Nature’s forcing the fish to move into their spawning areas, but we sure could use some rain to kick things into high gear,” he told us. He says small bead-head flies are working well.
Captain Tim Tower of the Bunny Clark furnished the following information from a recent trip on their website: “The fishing conditions were good to very good, the catching was good and landings were fair to good. Most legal fish landed were haddock, by far. The haddock cull was 50/50, legal to sub-legal fish. Legal landings also included twelve pollock, a whiting and five cusk. Released fish included one cod of five pounds or so, a few smaller cod, twenty-five dogfish and a bluefin tuna? They anchored and drift fished. All terminal gear worked about the same but bait was best for the haddock.”
“I didn't ask Ian as to whom was high hook with the most legal fish today. The day really centered around Duane King (MA) who fought, what I believe, was a bluefin tuna for forty-five minutes only to lose it to a break in the monofilament leader about three inches down from the uni-knot that held the leader to the Spectra main line. They never did see the fish but the way it fought led both Ian and I to believe it was a tuna. Duane fought it for most of the time but his son, Justin King (NH), did the rest. The fight lasted about forty-five minutes. Ian told me that both did a masterful job in the fight, albeit, to no avail. Duane King ended up winning the boat pool for the largest fish with an eight-pound pollock. The second largest fish was a seven-pound pollock caught by Jesse Getbehead (NY).”
Full-time New Hampshire fishing guide Tim of Tim Moore Outdoors says the crappie fishing just keeps getting better by the day. He says he is surprised by the lack of anglers who want to book trips for black crappie in the fall. “Fall crappie fishing is so fun. There are a ton of fish and they’re hungry. Some days we can catch them all day long, and some giants. They’re great for kids,” Tim said. He suspects competition for hunting season and the fact that many anglers have never eaten a fried crappie fillet are likely culprits. He says that anyone looking to try this amazing fall fishery should do so this month or next. The crappie have moved into basins around 30-feet deep (in his waters) and are feeding to prepare for the coming winter. “I continue to run private kayak trips, or trips in my boat, until the lake skims with ice. We catch a ton of fish and there are some occasional slabs over 16-inches,” he said. Tim closed by saying that anyone interested in getting out with their kids or their friends can visit his website at www.TimMooreOutdoors.com.
Scott at Suds N’ Soda Sports in Greenland says that the fishing has slowed down considerably, mostly due to hunting seasons. He did say that there has been an increasing number of anglers targeting trout again, and lots of customers gearing up for fall crappie and bass fishing. Scott says that while reports of stripers are scarce, the reports he is getting are that there are still a lot of fish around in the Piscataqua River and along the coast. He says that as waters cool those fish will soon migrate south
Chad at Dover Marine/Covered Bridge Sports told us that there is still a bunch of striped bass in the Piscataqua River. “We were heading out tuna fishing the other day and we marked a ton of stripers from Eliot all the way out to the mouth,” he said. He said he only saw a few boats targeting the stripers and says that anyone who wants a good crack at some good numbers should have very little competition for real estate. Chad also told us that the freshwater bass bite is very strong right now, but reports have slowed to a crawl due to hunting seasons.
Captain Phil Eastman at Eastman’s Docks in Seabrook posted this recent report on their website: “We’ve added the Lady Audrey Mae for the 14th marathon due to today’s cancelled Marathon! Saturday fishing was slow on anchor most of the day. As soon as the wind died down enough we could get the drift sock and had a decent last stop on the haddock! Sunday’s Marathon started out good on the drift with haddock and some pollock, a few slow stops on anchor then finished the day on some good big pollock fishing to make it a good day despite the rough weather. If your looking to get out this week, tomorrow (Tuesday) looks like the day to go, light west winds!!”
Martha at Surfland Bait and Tackle on Plum Island reported good fishing along the beaches has been good off the wildlife refuge. She also had a recent report of keeper-sized stripers caught at night using live eels. “Every day is different this time of year,” she said. With fish still hanging around north of Plum Island, she expects a good run of fish, as long as the storms don’t get too bad.
Pete Santini at Fishing Finatics in Everett told us that there is still a good bass bite happening, with lots of schoolies hanging around between the airport and Long Island. Rubber shads are working well. For bigger stripers, Pete suggests Revere, Winthrop, Nahant shorelines in 8 or 10-feet of water with black, orange, or red Santini Tubes tipped with sea worms, or live mackerel. “They’re getting some nice fish, up to 45-inches,” Pete said. Pete says there are a few flounder moving back into Swampscott and that clams and sea worms are working well. He also says the rainbow trout fishing is picking up in many of the local ponds. He says Horn, Walden, and White are ponds that have recently been stocked.
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