Moose Pond - Bridgton, ME - May 30, 2011

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norm
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Moose Pond - Bridgton, ME - May 30, 2011

Postby norm » Thu Jun 02, 2011 7:37 pm

I had the opportunity to check out Moose Pond in Bridgton, Maine on Sunday and Monday of Memorial Day weekend. Some freinds of ours bought a house in nearby Sweden, Maine and invited us up for a visit. Nobody else wanted to paddle, so I was on my own. I got up fairly early Sunday and paddled for a little over an hour in a 9' recreational kayak...I had to be back early enough to help make Sunday morning breakfast. In my rush, I forgot to bring my camera and phone, so that helped me keep the trip short. The weather was a little overcast anyway, so pictures would not have been good. The air temp was comfortable in the 60s and the water was smooth as glass.

Monday morning I had no breakfast help responsibilities so I paddled around for about 3 hours and used my Easky 15 sea kayak.

Moose Pond is over 8 miles long running north-south but never more than a mile wide east-west. It is split by a causeway in the north and there is a bridge across a thin area in the south. I only checked out the top 1.5 miles above the causeway and a half mile below the causeway in the widest area of the pond. There is a nice picnic area half-way across the causeway that I chose as my spot to launch from. There is a boat ramp from the causeway but it has no parking lot, so with cartop boats, I figured the picnic area would be easier. There were about 8 picnic spots to choose from separated by woods, so I found one with a shallow drop drop-off into the water and a nice flat rock to use as a step.

Here is the picnic site I launched from with the causeway road visible in the background.

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To my left after launching was the bridge of the causeway that allowed access from the upper section of the pond to the lower. The local boaters know to use caution in this area as there are some serious size rocks near the island.

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On Monday, the weather was beautiful, no jacket needed (except the PFD of course). There was brilliant sunlight at 8:00am. I got in the boat and paddled under the bridge and got this nice view of the Shawnee Peak Ski Area.

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Of course, as soon as I came out of the shade, I realized I had forgotten to grab sunglasses, so back to the truck. After getting back into the boat, I decided to explore the top part of the pond as far as I could go north and then take a peak back out below the causeway if I still had energy and time later.

Heading north, here is a shot of the view. In the foreground is the Knights Hill Association, a community of about 200 homes with a nice little marina, beach and cove with racks for kayaks. The leftmost hill in the background is Black Mountain where my friends have bought their second home.

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Here is the cove of the Knights Hill Association

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Most of the homes on the water had their own docks. I like this one.

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As I went further up into the northwest corner, the water was very shallow but there were still homes with docks. This one looked like it had a lot of privacy, but not a lot of depth if they wanted to use a power boat.

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The north end of the pond was very peaceful and quiet compared to the constant road noise that is heard when near the causeway. For a while, the only sound I heard were two Canadian Geese arguing back and forth about 100 yards apart. They were pretty active so there was no getting close to them for a picture. I tried to shoot video to capture the sound, but it did not come out well.

There was one cooperative character that didn't mind having his picture taken. I don't recall seeing a turtle up on a steep rock like this before. I was careful not to spook him as it must have been quite a difficult climb to get up there.

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The northernmost reaches of the pond were marshy and looked like the perfect area to spot moose in the evening...if you could deal with the bugs. At dusk, the mosquitoes would eat you alive. During the day it was pretty nice if you stayed out of the shade and far enough away from shore to avoid the nasty little knats that would buzz around your head until a breeze came up to clear them away.

I turned back south and came across the smallest of islands. Just a bunch of rocks, but quite the contrast from the rest of the islands.

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Most of the islands were more like this - very wooded and bushy - stay clear or suffer the wrath of swarming knats.

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When I got back to my launch spot, I still had energy and thought I had time, so I poked out into the bigger part of the lake below the causeway for an hour or so.

I thought it would be nice to check out the boat ramp from the water side for my friends who might bring their motorboat up some time. The ramp was pretty basic and really only wide enough for one trailer, but it seemed sufficient for this area.

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There was a little more wind in this open part of the pond which I became thankful for after getting too close to shore and gathering a swarm of knats and flies around my head. I decided it was time to get some exercise and try a sprint across to the far side of the pond, into the wind to get clear of the annoying bugs. It took a while but eventually I got free of them.

Here is the picture that caused me to get too close to shore and pick up the swarm. This driftwood collection looked interesting.

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I was very happy that the bugs that plagued my paddling were not around at the picnic area I had launched from. I was able to take my time loading my boat back onto the truck.

Here is a topo map that shows the upper 2.5 miles of Moose pond and the track I paddled. The total distance covered on Monday was 7 miles.

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Norm

NorwayLady
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Re: Moose Pond - Bridgton, ME - May 30, 2011

Postby NorwayLady » Wed Jun 08, 2011 7:32 pm

Thanks for sharing, Norm. I always enjoy your trip reports and all the photos you post!

NorwayLady
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