Once again the flowers are blooming, the canoe is down by the pond, and the grill is wafting the delicious smell of BBQ. It’s summer time in Rangeley!
It has been a sweltering hot summer in Maine, but thankfully there has been a little respite from the heat in the shady woods of Rangeley. The loon pair on the pond had twins this summer and they have been serenading us since spring with their beautiful and haunting songs. We sit around the campfire at night and listen to them, gazing at the brilliantly clear sky full of stars. Curls of smoke and sparks lift from the fire and float into the night sky; the red sparks stand out against the black night and then fade into the white of the stars as they burn out. It’s quiet and peaceful in the Maine woods.
Jack With a Trout
We got up at dawn and made our way to the river. I ducked through the woods pushing the dewy branches aside, stepped into the river and tied on a nymph. I cast into the swift water and let it drift. A Golden-Eye duck flew up the river and past me. I cast again, and this time a trout bit my fly and pulled my line out. I netted it, delighted by the thrill of catching a fish, and admired its bright red sides. We caught fish after fish in the early morning, working our way down the river laughing at our luck.
Summer days move like a trout in the river, slowly with the current, and then with occasional bursts of energetic activity.
At dusk we sat around the campfire listening to the loons’ haunting calls from the pond. My toes dug into the grass in front of the flickering flames. The lid of the BBQ grill was open and the smell of dinner wafted toward me. Lightening bugs flickered in the bushes along the yard. The warm summer air settled heavily on my bare arms. I closed my eyes and soaked in the summer evening.
Moose Behind Camp
Turing onto Quimby Pond Road with the warm summer air coming through my open car window I can’t help but smile. Seeing the road sign makes me instantly feel like it is truly summer; I am almost at camp where campfires, berry picking, and summer relaxing resides. Soon I will sit on the porch and have a summer drink— there will be yard games and canoeing and fishing.
In the evening I slip away and sit on the front steps looking at the stars in the clear summer sky, the loons call on the water sending shivers down my arms…or maybe it’s the cooler air. It is mid-August, and the weather has turned cool at night, perfect for sleeping, but not too cold to close the windows and I keep listening to the loons as I curl up in bed.
On my morning walk to the pond the sun pierces the mist rising out of the trees and turns the pond pink as it chases the last of the mist off the water. Three mallard ducks swim in front of me on the shore and a belted kingfisher flies from the tree next to me. It swoops low to the water as it hunts and his blue wings flash in my direction. I pick raspberries as I walk back, ready for another day of summer at Red Quill.
Happy Summer Solstice! June brought the official start of summer and it was a great month for fishing and basking in the sun. It has been warm and sunny in Rangeley, with occasional rain to keep the water cool for the fish. It’s that time of year when the garden salads are plentiful, the days are sunny and warm and the fish are biting.
When the road-side fishing holes are full of fisherman and everyone is vying for the same fish, I reel in my line, pack a bag for the day and get on my bike to find the places that you can’t drive to. With my flyrod in one hand, handlebars in the other and the sun on my back, I take to the woods and follow the rivers along the old woods-roads for the day. Often, the best fishing holes are off the beaten path and take a little effort to get to, but they’re always worth it.
landing a big one!
Whether fishing the rivers, paddling around Quimby Pond, or lying in the hammock, now is the time to be in Rangeley!
early morning fishing