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Maine Fishing Season has officially begun

Here is a little edit I put together from Maine River Guides 2011 Fishing Season…
Let the fun begin!


Maine Fly Fishing : Half Time Report

Native Maine Brook Trout

Here we are again mid season, and fast approaching the dog days of summer. Fortunately water temps are holding in the sixties and I feel we will be set up for some great Late July/August fishing. Caddis are still coming off strong and I find smaller has been better lately with size 18’s and 20’s in dark colors working well. The big summer Stonefly hatches have been keeping fish looking up to take Stimulators, Sofa Pillows, Foam Stones, Bugmeisters and and other large buggy varieties. I generally like fishing these big bugs with a small caddis nymph or emerger in tow. For you stillwater native brook trout fishermen the ponds are still pumping out some strong hexagenia limbata hatches but fish are getting fussier by the day depending on where you fish. When the spinner falls out number hatching duns the end is near.

From now through the end of August I will be fishing the West Branch of the Penobscot, and the Bingham section of the Kennebec, with an occassional jaunt over to the East Outlet of the Kennebec. If you are looking for a new challenge in dryfly fishing, the Wild Rainbow Trout in Bingham will keep you on your toes. Make sure to check your backing knot before you go, as fish over 18 inches will run long and hard… Looking ahead into August many of my trout trips will be split days early morning launches, midday swims followed by siestas and back out for the evening risers. This approach is better for the fish, and the anglers all around.

If you are hesitant to drive north in pursuit of trout there are some stellar opportunities for Smallmouth Bass and Largemouth Bass within an hours drive of the Greater Portland area. Email or give a call and we can get you in touch with some WBD’s… guide’s I’d call “Weapons of Bass Destruction”.

We are at the halfway point in our season, and Fall will be here before you know it. If you haven’t fished in September and October in Maine crowds thin out, biting bugs are gone, and the fishing is refreshed by cooling water temps. Give a call and we will get you on it! 207-749-1593

Here is some eye candy from June and July 2011:

June Caddis

Sniffin out some fish

Blake gets one done

Hexagenia Limbata

Adelle enjoys the evening rise

The wait...

Kevin's Levitating Brook Trout

Hexagenia on Simms Bag

Andrew's West Branch Salmon

Solitude at Big Eddy Pool

Andy with a nice WB Salmon

Jim with a Chunk of a Brook trout

Gridlock-Big Eddy Penobscot River

Captain Kev hooked up.

Craig with a hefty fish

Fresh Salmon from the Kennebec

Bob with one of many salmon from the East Outlet



Prime Time has arrived : Fly Fishing Maine


May into June has been one hell of a Roller Coaster ride this season with river flows up and down, with many Plan B’s C’s and D’s thrown in the mix, trips canceled and rescheduled. The good news is fishing-friendly flows have finally arrived on the West Branch of the Penobscot, and the fishing has been solid. I have fished the river from 7300cfs on down to 2400cfs with good results all the way through. All tactics have produced in the last few weeks, smelt-style streamers up top and on bottom, Nymphs under and indie or naked, and of course dry flies. Over the last week and a half the dryfly fishing has come on hard, from Henrickson’s to rusty spinners, and as of Saturday night Big Caddis hatches. Prime time is here and once the current damp weather passes the caddis will really take the spotlight.

Speaking of spotlights…
Lefty Krey likes the new ride!

Lefty Krey

Fly Casting with Lefty Krey

The new Pro Guide Driftboat from Boulder Boatworks is turning some heads. Even Lefty Kreh was impressed with it. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get Lefty out in it and on the water for the day due to Severe Thunderstorms right at the put-in! But we made the best of the day sharing stories and even got some private casting lessons and discussion and lunch with a true legend of the fly fishing world. I hope to be half the caster Lefty Kreh is when I reach his age, he is truly incredible! We will make it happen next year Lefty!

Chris with a nice salmon

Ripogenus Dam at 9500 cfs

The next month is the time to get out and experience some of the finest dryfly fishing in Maine. From Blizzard caddis and mayflies, to the Big Bugs of summer (Hexes) on a Northwoods pond. If you don’t have plans to get out soon you should…

Want to float a Maine River in style, give us a call or email. Some June/July dates are available.
Cell 207-749-1593

Big Eddy Mist

Riverside Lunch

Big Brookie

All Smiles

First Salmon

Big Eddy Salmon

Until next time…

I hear Banjo music...


Building a better Driftboat: time well spent

Back in early April I trailered home a new Pro Guide Driftboat kit by Boulder Boatworks.
Bare Polymer Hull
Finished Boat

While I’ve always wanted to build a wooden driftboat… and someday I will when it better suits my fishing needs. Years before I ever bought my NRS raft I began searching for a boat that was durable, quiet, and still retained the elegance of a driftboat’s lines… as a full time fly fishing guide I needed something durable and low maintenance above all else. Many guides here in Maine have been using fiberglass driftboats for years, and I explored those possibilities but never got on board. Then I ran across a picture of a beautiful drift boat built by a small company out of Boulder Colorado four years ago. There boats featured a light, durable, and quiet polymer hull, finished with ash ribs gunnels and trim. I began calling the guys out at Boulder and asking tons of questions about this new driftboat material. I called guides who have been using their boats for a few seasons and hearing very positive feedback. While talking the the guys at Boulder Boat works one day they mentioned a build it at home kit option they were going to begin to sell… I was sold. It wasn’t until late last winter I finally pulled the trigger sent them some cash and put my order in.

So early this May I began gluing wood,
Glued Gunnels
sanding ribs, epoxying wood, varnishing wood,
more sanding, more varnishing.
After the gunnel scarf joints were glued and all four gunnels were sanded smooth,
Traveling Gunnels
I dropped them off to the guys at New England Off Road in Westbrook, Maine to have the gunnels coated with Line-X. The guys at New England Off Road did an awesome job on the gunnels, and I’m very glad I choose this option and feel for long term durability it is the way to go, especially if you have a dog.
Gunnel rider
It took over a week and a half to get the finish to where I wanted it. Then began the fun part… building the Boat! The build up process took about another week and a half to juggle between days on the water, and rescheduling lost days on the water due to high water.

Mounting Exterior gunnel.
Install outer port gunnel
Clamping starboard exterior gunnel.
Starboard gunnel clamp into place
Setting the Rib ins:
Making the interior gunnel cuts was the most intense part…a short cut would be bad, very bad…
Bare Bow:
Finished Bow Dashboard, and fly deck:
Finished Bow
Guide tested, dog approved:
Hood Ornament
Of course there were fish to be caught during the build:

Brook Trout
Chris Loves Brook Trout
Brook Trout

Chris Loves Brookies
Got Lips?
Maine Smallmouth Bass
Spring Landlocked Salmon
Spring Salmon

Watching that bare hull slowly take the shape of a boat day by day was extremely rewardlng. I can honestly say my blood, sweat, and tears beers went into the building of this Pro Guide driftboat. I had some great help along the way, from my neighbors, my wife, my buddy Josh. The Biggest Thanks! goes to my friend Andrew, who put in a ton of time sanding, clamping gunnels, unclamping gunnels, theorizing, scratching heads, and getting it done. Check him out at Themadtrouter! I also owe a big thanks to the whole crew at Boulder Boatworks who were extremely helpful and supportive from delivering all the way through the build. Thanks Andy, Steve, and Chris for always taking the time to answer my questions no matter how busy you are. You guys Rock!

It was three weeks well spent, and now the real fun begins…

Who wants to Float a Beautiful Maine River?
Grab a seat before the dog beats you to it!

Andrew Looses his seat


April Fishing in Maine: Go get some

We are off to a slow start to the 2011 fishing season here in Maine. After a long snowy winter rivers across the state are running cold, high, and off color. Despite the less than ideal conditions, each visit to moving water this season has produced a good variety of fish species. Prime Time is on the way…slowy.

Check out this fish tale from an recent outing with my friend Jeremy over at


Dogs like Salmon

Mug Shot

Baby Pike gets the snif test.

Maine Mutt


Coming to a River in Maine: Boulder Boat Works

By late April I will be guiding many of my 2011 trips from my brand new Pro Guide drift boat, from the good folks out at Boulder Boat Works. I have been talking to the guys at Boulder Boats for at least three years now about their unique and modern take on driftboat materials and design. The guys at Boulder are working on the hull as I type, and should be complete by mid-late April. To say I am eagerly awaiting the arrival of the new drift boat would be a huge understatement!
….As for my raft? I have no plans to sell “Big Blue” my 14 foot NRS raft, it is, and still will be the right tool for many sections of Maine’s Rivers.

The new Boulder Boat Works Pro Guide will simply offer my anglers a higher level of comfort in a cleaner fishing platform. The new rig will also easily accommodate a small outboard for motoring out (instead of rowing out) on The East Outlet and Bingham sections of the Kennebec River.

For anyone in the Northeast who has wanted to take one of these for a spin, you have likely had no success tracking one down, until now… If you’d like to get out on the water and see what Boulder Boat Works Drift Boats are all about, give me a call to line up some time in the new rig! Cell: 207-749-1593

Spring wont be long now…
Finished Boat


The Fly Fish Journal: Maine River Guides

Tired of the same regurgitated content that has been circulating in flyfishing magazines for decades? There is good news! There are some great new options in print and online with amazing imagery and fresh new stories from emerging writers.

If you are looking for more refreshing content in print form pick up a copy of The Fly Fish Journal. Think…The Drake meets Gray’s Sporting Journal… Quality photography and content, and I’m not just saying that because of the sweet picture of my boat on the West Branch in Issue 2.3 by Matt Boutet. The article “Worst Guide in the World” by Dylan Tomine had me laughing so hard one morning, I almost snorted orange juice all over my magazine! For more of Matt’s Maine Woods & Waters focused photography check out Matt Boutet Photography.


Little Eddy Maine

Evening Calm Penobscot

Had to get out of the house last week to stay sane…here is what followed:


Happy New Year!

Another year has come and gone too fast.

I feel fortunate to have spent the last day of the 2010 fishing season reflecting on another amazing year with good friends, family, and spirits…I hope you all did the same.

Happy New Year! Wishing all the best for you, your friends and family in 2011.
Hope to see you on the water in Maine this year!

Maine Brown Trout on Ice

Last Years Water
Maine River Ice

Maine Brown Trout
Winter Brown Trout


Merry Christmas!

“Santa Clouser”
Santa Clouser Fly

Thanks to all the good folks I have spent time on the water with! I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Greg B

Looking forward to Spring!
Spring at the Cribworks


Strip Cedar Canoe: A Winter Project

I have always enjoyed the classic beauty and feel of wooden boats on the water. The looks are elegant, the feel of riding in one is as wonderful an experience one can have on the water. Unfortunately the practicality of guiding out of a wooden boat where I frequent just doesn’t make a lot of sense for me. I have had the pleasure of rowing two beautiful wooden boats built by a friend and summer resident at the Big Eddy Campground Pete Boucher. I must say, I have enjoyed every second of those experiences.

Pete at the oars in his Rapid Robert

Recently while enjoying a beer at a friends house he showed me a 19 foot strip cedar canoe he had hoped to restore, but can’t find time for amidst other projects. I asked if he wanted to part with it and within an hour I had it loaded on the truck heading for home. I am pleased to add a wooden boat to the collection and I have dubbed it “The Beast” for obvious reasons.

The new ride at home

This will be an ongoing restoration project I hope to complete by Spring Fishing Season 2011, and I will be posting updates as I make progress. If anyone has any advice or experience in strip cedar canoe restoration I am all ears.

Some photos of the canoe:

dirty boat

busted gunnels and decks

damaged fiberglass

the beast

Since these photos were taken the entire canoe has been scrubbed down good and is airing out in the garage…