Salmon Lake, Maine: Finding Fish

dock at Salmon Lake, Maine, with chair and American flag
A quiet dock on Salmon Lake, near Belgrade, Maine, is the perfect place to relax and casually cast a line. Ironically, there are no salmon, but don’t be surprised if a large bass tugs you awake. Photo by Lisa Ballard

Testing the waters of a time-honored tradition in interior Maine

In 1897, Cornelia “Fly Rod” Crosby became the first-ever registered Maine fishing guide. She also wrote a fishing column in which she called Maine “the nation’s playground.” Anglers have traveled to Maine ever since to cast in the state’s thousands of freshwater lakes and ponds.

Last summer en route to the coast, I stopped at Whisperwood, a fishing camp on Salmon Lake that dates back to the 1920s, where I picked up a fishing license and put in a boat. While salmon no longer fin in their namesake lake, the bass were bountiful. The lake also holds brown trout, perch and pickerel, typical of the many lakes in this area.

After fishing for several hours, I spent a pleasant afternoon napping in the sun. I’m not sure if that’s considered a tradition in Maine, too, but I’m planning to make it one. There’s nothing more relaxing than catching a few bass and then taking a snooze on a summer afternoon in central Maine!

 If You Go

Two Good Sam Parks are within a half hour’s drive of Whisperwood, Augusta West Kampground in Winthrop and Two Rivers Campground in Skowhegan.


Authors Lisa and Jack Ballard in a kayakTrailer Life columnist Lisa Ballard (with her husband, Jack) explores the outdoors and camps throughout North America while on assignment and for fun. A freelance writer and photographer since 1991, Lisa’s work has appeared in hundreds of magazines, websites, calendars, billboards and on vehicles…anywhere words or images appear. She has written 11 books, including six guidebooks, and recently her first children’s book, Gasparilla, A Pirate’s Tale. Ride along with her at www.lisaballardoutdoors.com.

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