Saturday, June 13, 2015
Body of Water: Upper Pleasant Pond, Richmond, Maine [Maine Gazetteer Map 12, E4]
Directions: From Portland, Maine, drive north on 295 towards Augusta. Take the Richmond/Litchfield Exit (#43) and turn left onto Rt. 197 for just over a mile, then turn right onto Rt. 138 for a very quick transition to Rt. 201. Turn Right onto Rt. 201 for about 2 miles. There will be a street sign on the right which indicates Thorofare Road will be on the left. Turn Left onto Thorofare Road. You will quickly come to Pleasant Pond (on the right) and Upper Pleasant Pond (on the left.)
Boat Launch: Cement, grooved. (There are two boat launches on this road, one leads to Pleasant Pond, the other to Upper Pleasant Pond.) I used the launch on Upper Pleasant Pond.
Parking: Roadside, plenty of spaces to park, it was busy today and we had plenty of space to park and unload along the road. Make sure to respect the distance between vehicles and boat trailers. Remember that vehicles pulling trailers need more room to maneuver out of spots than trailer free vehicles.
Bathroom:Nope... I stopped in Topsham on my way up, smart move! (I would suggest stopping in Topsham to use the facilities, if you do this place justice you will be on the water for a long time!)
Wildlife: The wildlife was less plentiful that I would have anticipated, but we did see a couple of turtles, an eagle, some fish, a pair of nesting loons, and many songbirds. We thought we heard a deer in the woods, but did not see it. I suspect early morning or evening paddles would have some deer or even moose sightings.
Notes: I am so excited about this spot!!! I met up with a friend to do some paddling on Upper Pleasant Pond. It was AMAZING! We spent a good chunk of time on the water, close to 5 hours, and paddled about 10 miles. This is creeping to the top of my favorite places to paddle because it is a pretty typical pond in its main parts, but there are two incredible streams to paddle that made me feel like I was exploring places nobody else had been. It was beautiful. Upper Pleasant pond connects to Pleasant Pond via a passage under a bridge. (My paddling partner today had done Pleasant Pond the day before and said Upper was much more protected and had many more areas to explore.)Because of its location there was some traffic noise at times, but it did not take away from the peace and tranquility this pond offers. There were a few homes on the pond but most of the shoreline was undeveloped. I loved the variety that this spot offers. I would not recommend this spot for people looking to add swimming to their day. The lake is filled with weeds and unfortunately I think I saw some milfoil. (Of course I am a bit squeamish when it comes to swimming... I like sandy, weed free areas!) The boat traffic on Upper Pleasant seems to be from day users, people who bring their kayaks, canoes, and fishing boats to use for the day.
The main part of the pond feels like many other ponds, but having two streams to explore was so much fun. In looking at Google Maps, it seems the stream at the far end of the pond is Cobbosseeconte Stream and the stream that stems off the pond close to the boat launch is also Cobbosseeconte Stream that seems to turn nto Potters Brook. I am not convinced that the streams are Cobbosseeconte, would need to confirm with some locals, but if you are googling this destination, that's what you will see. I plan on returning here again soon!!
This was my view when I first put in from the boat ramp. So much beauty!!
We stayed to the left hand shore to keep track of where we were... and came upon this guy... one of ONLY two turtles we spotted today. (Despite there being MANY great places for them to be!)
This camp has a story!! I am not sure what it is, but just look at it! I could picture a family here, sleeping on the porch on the warmest summer nights...
And could picture an old man sitting in this chair watching the water and telling some great stories...
There are a lot of irises on this pond and in the streams.
So wide open in some areas...
Check out these horses! They are lucky to live lakeside!
There was a lot of grass in the lake, and I think we did see some milfoil.. a good reminder to clean off your boat between paddles! (Not my kind of swimming spots, but definitely my kind of paddling destination!)
My paddling partner for the day, Sandra! So nice to catch up and do so enjoying something we both love!
After we paddled the entire length of the pond we veered to the right and found this channel/stream and it was so fun to explore!(If we had veered left we would have headed for a couple of small culverts along Rt. 197, where some people had parked to launch their canoe. This could be another spot to put in. I cannot speak to the conditions of launching there as we didn't go down to explore.)
I love these kinds of areas!
Such beauty... and if you look closely you can see some orange speckled wings of a butterfly... I didn't notice until I was looking at the picture! (It is a butterfly... I am sure of it... because I am afraid of moths!)
Leaving the stream and heading back to the pond...
An eagle was enjoying the wind, which was strong at times!
Our second and final turtle of the day...
The eagle did fly across in front of us and disappeared into the trees!
Mother nature making good use of a dead stump...
A nesting loon... They look so strange when on their nest... this is only the third time I have seen a loon on its nest. I was surprised at the open area this pair had chosen... we passed by them at a safe distance as we went to explore another stream... please ALWAYS give wildlife their space!
The other stream...
A bird... yet to be identified... regally watching over his mate...
As she sits on the nest...
She is so well camoflaged, can you see her in this picture?
I was not this close, I was zoomed in as far as my little camera could go!
ooooh! Double culverts!!! Right or left? Which one to go through??
Root systems fascinate me...
Does it get any more peaceful than this?
At times I felt like we were in the bayou!
Back by the loons...
After taking out of the pond... I was walking back to my truck and looked to see if I could see the nest and saw this! A BABY loon!!! So precious!
Baby with both parents... must be very young... newly hatched...
I HIGHLY recommend this spot for paddlers. You could do a quick trip down the stream after putting in (bear right when your back is to the launch) or you can spend the day on the water like we did... I would recommend exploring it all!!!