Outdoors in Maine

  • Salmon recovery: Is it worth it?

    Nothing gets an angler’s heart pumping faster than the sight of an airborne Atlantic salmon dancing atop the water on a flyline. As a slack-jawed kid, I watched these goings-on at the legendary Bangor Salmon Pool. Later, as an adult, the late Tom Hennessey helped me land my first silver warrior at the Pipeline Pool

  • The fishers debate

    The fishers debate

    A fisherman I have always been; and a fisherman I will always be, until I join my late fishing friend Wiggie Robinson, who no doubt is up there paddling the Silver Canoe. What about you? If you have been known to wet a line, what do you call yourself, a fisherman or a fisher? A

  • Grand Lake Stream hatchery repaired

    If you are a fly fisherman whose passion is casting a line over landlocked salmon across moving water, Grand Lake Stream (GLS) is the next thing to paradise. And, since 1875, the state fish hatchery on the stream has been part of the GLS scene, and the source of salmon that populate the stream and

  • Electric snow machines

    Electric snow machines

    Let’s face it, snowsledding through the Maine wilderness is not everyone’s cup of tea. The machines are noisy. And, according to snowmobile writer Rod Fraser, “a two-stroke driven snowmobile emits more pollution than a car.” Technologically, though, modern gas-powered snow machines have a come a long way since my first SkiDoo, a smoke-puffing, rattling 12-horsepower

  • The Belchertown Jagermeister

    Historically, hunting has always had its ceremonial aspects. The deer hunting club that I have enjoyed for almost 50 years has its unique rituals, mostly all-in-good-fun practices that, we like to think, set us apart from other deer camps from the mountains of Oregon and the Dismal Swamp of Virginia to the fir thickets of

  • The best venison recipes

    When the winter winds come blowing in and temperatures hover in the single digits, cooking and consuming great food warms the tummy and the soul. These venison recipes are sure to please.   Seboeis Stew   This recipe has been a time-tested favorite at a Maine North Woods deer camp frequented by a group of

  • Ice shack snapshots

    Here in the sun-drenched Florida Keys, the nearest thing to an ice shack is a small shed near the marina that holds two big chest freezers where boaters get their 10-pound bags of ice cubes every couple of days. As February approaches, for some inexplicable reason, I get thinking about ice shacks and the good

  • The Camuso appointment

    Maine’s first female governor, Janet Mills, picked Judy Camuso to replace Chandler Woodcock as our new commissioner of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. If confirmed by the state Legislature, Camuso will be IF&W’s first female commissioner. Before her gubernatorial appointment, the 48-year old Camuso served as IF&W’s director of wildlife. By background,

  • What’s next?

    Having once been dubbed “an odd duck” in a loving way by the wife of one of my closest friends, I shouldn’t wonder that, for some perverse reason, it tickles me when my writing lights the fires of provocation — the hotter the better! A recent column I wrote about the increasing interest in the

  • Looking back on 2018

    The new year is almost always a welcome event, even if we are all a year older. The slate is clean. As we look ahead it’s a lot like a field of virgin snow. As we move on, the tracks we leave will take us to unseen ground. This is especially sweet for outdoor people

  • The Hennessey years

    The Hennessey years

    Tom Hennessey — gifted sporting artist, meticulous writer and friend to sportsmen — epitomized the self-made man. Always an avid outdoorsman with a creative bent, who lived to fish and hunt, the Brewer native parlayed his artistic passion and skill into a successful career as a nationally known sporting artist and author. He taught himself

  • Ice: Is it safe?

    Each year about this time, the Maine Warden Service urges us to use extreme caution before venturing out onto any ice that may be covering Maine’s waterways. This is timely advice. Two winters ago, three nighttime snowsledders all perished in one night on Rangeley Lake when they and their machines broke through thin ice. Many