Copyright 2018 James Marsh
Fly Fishing The Kennebec River In
The Kennebec River flows through a series of dams for
over one-hundred and fifty miles. There are several
tailwaters. It starts as two outlets from Moosehead Lake
where it flows through two dams. Both are on the west
side of the lake. This forms the East and West
Branches of the Kennebec River.
Both the East and West Branches flow into Indian
Pond. From the Harris Station Dam at Indian Pond, the
Kennebec River flows to the Forks Township. The Dead
River joins it at that point. It widens and continues on to
Wyman Lake at Moscow. The area from Indian Pond to
the Forks is very remote. There are several more dams
located on the river as it flow through the Upper
Locals content that the river in the Upper Kennebec
Valley is one of the best wild trout fisheries in the
eastern United States. Trout are not stocked above
Salon. They are all native or wild. The cold tailwater
below Wyman Dam provides fishing during the hottest
parts of the summer.
The River contains a good population of landlocked
salmon, brook trout, brown trout and rainbow trout. The
rainbow trout probably average around twelve to fifteen
inches. Plenty of them exist up to and over twenty
The brown trout grow quite large. One wild 31 inch
rainbow was caught in this river. Fall provides the best
opportunity to catch the browns.
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Recommended Tackle & Gear
4, 5 or 6 weight for trout, 6 to 8 for
Dry fly: 9 &12 ft., 5 or 6X, Nymphing:
71/2 ft., 3 or 4X, Streamers 0-2X
Dry fly: 5 or 6X, Nymphing: 3 or 4X,
Streamer & Salmon 0-2X
Best Fly Rod:
Perfect Fly 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 weight rods
For 4 to 9 wt. fly line
Fly Floatants and Misc Items:
Loon Floatants, KISS Strike Indicators
Tools & Accessories:
Nippers, forceps, retractors, etc.
The season opens at different times
depending on the section of the river.
The Spring season of May and early June
are very good.
Kennebec River Fly Fishing Guide
All of the different areas or tailwaters of the
river fish differently depending the releases.
The East Branch of the Kennebec River runs
along Routes 6 and 15 from Moosehead
Lake between the towns of Greenville and
Rockwood Maine. From Moosehead Lake to
Indian Pond is just over three miles and
consist mostly of pocket water with lots of
riffles and runs. Both streams cross the river
near the dam. You can access the water at
the bridge and all around the dam. This is a
good stretch of water although it does get a
good bit of fishing pressure at times.
The area is generally easy to wade if the
water levels aren't too high. As with many
Maine steams, the best fishing usually takes
place in the pools. The Dam Pool is a
popular place to fish. It's very large. Just
below the Dam Pool is the Gage Pool. Just
below that is the Trestle Pool where the
railroad crosses the river. The Bridge Pool is
just upstream from the Highway 6 and 15
bridge. There are plenty of runs just below
the Bridge Pool that are also good places to
There's also access for about a half mile on
the north side of the East Branch of the
Kennebec River at this point. There are
plenty of parking places and trails that take
you down to the river. When the road access
ends, there's a trail that follows along the
The river can also be accessed by boat from
Indian Pond. There you will find the
It is normally about the middle of May before
the water clears enough for good fishing in
most sections of the river. The area has a
deep snow pack most years and it takes time
to melt and clear the water of its drainage.
Some areas such as the Forks, open in April.
The Forks is another very popular place to
fish the Kennebec River. The #201
highway follows the East side of the river
where it can be accessed at several
places. The flows can fluctuate here. It is
very remote in some sections of the river
in this stretch. Landlocked salmon and
brook trout are the two main species in
this section of the river but it also holds
some rainbows and brown trout. It can be
waded or fished from a drift boat. This is a
very good fall fishing section.
The Wyman Dam in Moscow is the next
downstream popular location to fish. It can
be accessed from ME #16. This is a
bottom release tailwater. It has brook trout,
rainbow and landlocked salmon. It's one of
the few wild rainbow waters in the state of
Maine. These are hard fighting rainbows
but they can get picky at times. The river
has some very good hatches for a
tailwater. The water consist of lots of riffles
and runs. There are also some braided
channels. This section flows through
farmland and hills.
One of the best areas to fish the
Kennebec River is below the Shawmut
Dam near Fairfield. It is three miles from
the dam to Fairfield. This section is fly
fishing only. There is easy access and
wading that can be done just below the
dam. This section can also be floated in a
drift boat. It is popular because of its large
brown trout. This section also has some
good smallmouth bass fishing.
Kennebec River Hatches and Trout
Our information on aquatic insects is based
on our stream samples of larvae and
nymphs, not guess work. We base fly
suggestions on imitating the most plentiful
and most available insects and other foods
at the particular time you are fishing. Unlike
the generic fly shop trout flies, we have
specific imitations of all the insects in the
Kennebec River and in all stages of life that
are applicable to fishing. If you want to fish
better, more realistic trout flies, have a much
higher degree of success, give us a call. We
not only will help you with selections, you will
learn why, after trying Perfect Flies, 92% of
the thousands of our customers will use
nothing else. 1-800-594-4726
This diverse river has a variety of aquatic
insects, crustaceans and baitfish. Little Black
Stoneflies are one of the first hatches to take
place but they are usually gone by the time
the season opens in most areas. They start
about the first of March and last through
April. Keep in mind this is a long river
including ponds and tailwaters and the hatch
times vary a lot.
Various species of Little Blue-winged Olives
hatch during the year. There's usually a
peak starting around the middle of May
through June and another from about the
middle of August through September. You
may find a few of one of the various species
just about any day of the season.
Quill Gordons normally start about the first of
May and last until the middle of June,
depending on the section of the river. Brook
trout eat them eagerly.
Hendrickson hatch about the same time or
from about the first of May through the first
week of June.
March Browns start about the first of June
and last through the month. Light Cahill
start about the first of June and last on
into the middle of July. They will be found
in the fast water along with the March
Browns but at different times.
Little Yellow Stoneflies hatch from about
the first of June into the first of July.
These are the most important stoneflies
on the river.
There are a few species of Spotted
Sedges. These caddisflies hatch from
about the first of April all the way through
August, depending on the species.
There are also lots of Green Sedges that
hatch during June and July. The green
rock worm, or larva stage of this caddisfly
is very effective in the Kennebec River.
Ants are probably the most important
terrestrial. There are plenty of
grasshoppers, especially in the lower
sections of the river. You will also find
You definitely need streamers to match
the smelt if you fish early in the season.
Also streamers that imitate sculpin work
great. Our Perfect Fly Yellow Marabou
Sculpin works great in the Kennebec
If you haven't tried our Perfect Flies yet,
be certain to do so. You will be glad you
did. We have specific imitations of all the
insects that hatch on this stream as well
as some very realistic imitations of the
baitfish and sculpin.
Summertime can slow down the fishing in
some areas of the river.
Fall maybe the best all around time for fly
fishing the Kennebec River.
Kennebec River Fishing Report
Updated February 21, 2019
(Bottom Of Page)
Kennebec River Fishing Report - 10/08/18
This will not be updated until the season starts.
Stream levels are still pulsing, or changing from high to low. This is normal at this time of
the season. There are lots of hatches taking place and trout are being caught.
Remember, catch and release only.
7 Day Weather Forecast: There is a chance of rain through tomorrow and again
Thursday, otherwise clear for the next four days. Highs will range from 55 to 72 and lows
from 33 to 54 degrees.
Recommended Trout Flies:
Midges: Blood (Red), sizes 20/22 larva, pupa and adults
Midges: Cream, size 20/22, larva, pupa and adults
Midges: Light Green, size 20/22, larva, pupa and adults
Blue-winged Olives: size 18, nymph, emergers, duns and spinners
Brown Sculpin/White Belly Sculpin, articulated streamers, size 6/4
Black Matuka and Olive Matuka Sculpin, size 4/6/8
Great Autumn Brown Sedge, size 10, pupa and adults
Green Sedge Caddis, size 16/14, larva, pupa and adults.
Slate Drakes, size 10/12, nymphs and spinners
Strategies, Techniques and Tips:
White Belly Sculpin, Brown Sculpin and our Articulated streamers will work well
year-round. The Black Matuka and olive Matuka Sculpin flies are great flies to use right
Hatches of various species of Blue-winged Olives are possible in the afternoons and
more likely and in greater quantities if the skies are cloudy or overcast.
Great Autumn Brown sedges are hatching.
Slate Drakes are hatching.
We recommend fishing a tandem Midge rig under a small strike indicator with the midge
lava as the bottom fly and the midge pupa as the top fly.
Fish the adult midge only when you observe trout feeding on the surface.
|Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us (firstname.lastname@example.org)
with the dates you will be fishing this
stream and we will send you a list of our
fly suggestions. Please allow up to 24
hours for a response.
2. Call us 800-594-4726 and we will help
you decide which flies you need.
3. Email us (email@example.com)
with a budget for flies and we will select
them to match the budget and get them to
you in time for your fly fishing trip.
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02/21/19 It isn't too early to start
planning that next trip. We can help
you do that as well as select your gear
and flies for the trip. Send us an email