Key Species: mackerel, striped bass, bluefish Best Way to Fish: pier Best Time to Fish: June through September MAG: 15, A-2
Description: Fort Point State Park is located on a peninsula at the head of Penobscot Bay and the mouth of the Penobscot River. This beautiful little park is off the beaten path, and the 200-foot fishing pier is never crowded. Floats alongside the pier can accommodate visitors who arrive by boat. There is a boat landing on the east side of Cape Jellison, off the West Cape Road. At the park, you can see the remains of historic Fort Pownall; an entrance fee is charged during the summer months. Camping is available off U.S. Route 1 in Searsport and on Verona Island, 3.5 miles upriver from Fort Point.
Fishing index: In summer, schools of mackerel swim near the fishing pier. Most anglers fish for mackerel with Swedish Pimple jigs or Diamond Jigs. Cast the jig as far as you can, allow it to sink a bit, and reel in quickly, jerking the rod as you reel to impart action to the jig. It is almost impossible to reel too fast to catch mackerel. Striped bass and sometimes bluefish offer opportunities for bigger game.
The best way to take stripers or bluefish here is to catch a mackerel and use it for bait. Hook the mackerel through the back, being careful not to touch the spine, and let it swim freely. When a striper or bluefish hits, strike as hard as you can in order to set the hook properly. If the mackerel is too close to the surface, you may need to add some weight to keep it down. Dead mackerel work nearly as well and do not need to be weighted. Once you have caught your mackerel, you can cook it at one of the park’s seaside cooking sites.
This bluefish put up a terrific fight on a fly rod.
Note the small spoon still hooked to its jaw.
Sometimes schools of hungry bluefish invade Upper Penobscot Bay, providing fast-paced action.
Directions: From Searsport, head north on U.S. Route 1 to Stockton Springs. In Stockton, turn right off U.S. Route 1 just after the sign for Stockton Springs. In town, look for the Cape Road to the right, just past the post office, and a sign directing you to Fort Point State Park.
For more information: Call the Maine Department of Conservation Central Region Office. 33