Wanda and Pete's Letterboxes - Gone Fishing
BEFORE YOU SET OUT, PLEASE READ THE
WAIVER OF RESPONSIBILITY AND DISCLAIMER..
|244-250. SOMETHING FISHY GOING ON IN SOUTHERN RI||A scenic driving tour through the western part of South County with appropriate stops for some fresh water and salt water fish|
Recently, while stopping to hike at Trustom Pond, we picked up a brochure/map of fishing areas in Rhode Island with nice pictures of the fish that inspired this series. The brochure also said that no fishing license was required to fish in Rhode Island the first weekend in June, so we thought we'd share that information just in case anyone wanted to come over for "free fishing " along with these little "minnows in microboxes"!
You definitely need to bring your colored Marvy markers for this series, preferably a combination of black, blue, gray, green, yellow, brown, and red for full fishy shadings!
PART A: FRESH WATER LOOP:
Starting from exit 2 of I-95, head south on Woodville-Alton Road to find the parking lot for Black Farm Fish and Wildlife Management Area a mile or so down on the left side of the road. Take the trail heading out from the southeast corner of the lot and follow the piney path, bearing left at the first fork, crossing a couple of bridges, and then bearing right, until you reach the "T" junction with pond view before you. Straight ahead just a few feet away between a white pine and a small rock, find the "Black Crappie of Black Farm" hiding under a little stone.
Head back north to exit 2, cross over I-95, and turn left onto route 3 south. Take your first right onto Canochet Road, and continue on it past Asheville Pond on the left to the small parking lot for Blue Pond on the right. Walk along the flat, laurel-lined path for maybe half a mile till you reach an old foundation on the left with the pond straight ahead. Just before three shallow cement steps leading down towards the water, sit on the lower of two small boulders on the right and look directly across the trail. At the base of a laurel bush is a low foot-long rock with the "Bluegill of Blue Pond" tucked under a small stone on its right side.
Continue north on Canochet Road to Rockville, turn right on route 138 east, then left on Dye Hill Road, and left again on Woody Hill Road. When you reach route 165, continue straight across on Escoheag Road for just under a mile. Then turn right onto a gravel road staying left at the fork past the red cabin and continuing to the parking area at Fall River bridge where you will often see a fisherman or two. From there, take the yellow blazed Breakheart Trail on the south side of the road or continue driving along the road about half a mile to the yellow trail's next road crossing. Here the yellow trail continues north about a quarter mile to a yellow perch on the south side of Penny Hill. Sitting on the 2-seater rock overlooking the ledge with a 20 foot drop-off, glance left to a pitch pine with a long curved root extending towards the stone seat. There under the mid point of the root was where the original "Yellow Perch" had its precarious and short-lived perch. If anyone finds that first perch microbox, please replace it in that same location, carefully tucked into the pine needles behind a small stone. Meanwhile, however, we have planted a second perch just a bit further down the trail. From the stone seat, continue easterly on the yellow trail about 70 steps to a pitch pine on the right with a yellow blaze on either trailside. Six steps southwest under the southwest ledge of a flat rock behind two small stones and a piece of gray bark rests the new "Yellow Perch".
Next, continue driving east on the gravel road past Camp E-Huntee, and then turn south on gravel Frosty Hollow Road to reach little Frosty Hollow Pond, where only children age 14 or under are permitted to fish. (We figured this was a good one for "small fry" - or for anyone wanting to tell "fish stories" or be a "big fish in a small pond"!:-) Standing on the square cement block behind the fishing line recycling box, sight about 115 degrees to a 2 trunk pine, and go look under the needles tucked against a hole in its northern side for the "Large Mouth Bass".
Keep heading south on Frosty Hollow Road to get to route 165, then turn left and follow 165 east to a right turn onto Arcadia Road. Go south a couple of miles to the big parking lot on the right just past Browning Mill Pond. From the western side of the lot, pick up the yellow trail and follow it to the western side of the pond. After the first spillway and split rail fence on the left, you will start to see the old fish hatchery on the left. Turn left with the yellow trail, then left again to keep the pond's outlet stream on your right. Twenty steps past a greenish geodetic survey marker on the right side of the trail, stop and look left to a small tree next to the first rock before the fish hatchery view reopens. Nestled in between tree and rock, find the "Brown Bullhead of Browning Mill Pond".
Swing south several more miles on Arcadia Road to where it blends into route 3, heading south on it about another half mile to the blinking light in Hope Valley (junction with 138 west). Turn left onto Mechanic St, pass under I-95, and continue about another mile to the big brown Carolina Trout Pond sign on your left. Turn left onto the gravel road there and follow it to a large parking area beside the pond. From the memorial for Samuel Stillman Cudworth, walk around the pond, passing over the dam, until you are on the west side of the pond approximately opposite the sandy "beach" near where you parked. The monument will be across the water at about 140 degrees. Head west away from the pond about 40 steps towards a large ledge, with a tree fronted by a two-foot high flat-faced rock before it. Between that tree and the flat-faced rock, in a small crack covered by a bit of debris, you will find your "Trout", which can be either "Rainbow" or "Brook", depending on how you color it!
Leaving Carolina Management Area, turning left down Switch Road, right on Woodville Road, and then right again on Woodville-Alton Road will get you back to exit 2 of I-95. Hope you enjoyed the freshwater fishing tour!
PART B: SALT WATER TOUR:
For the salt water fishing trip, we decided to send people fishing just along a short stretch of RI shoreline between our hometowns of Charlestown and Westerly. Starting near the western end of Charlestown along route 1 near the historic Wilcox Tavern (still open for business), turn south on West Beach Road, and follow it as it curves into Quonochontaug. As soon as you see the large brown fishing area sign on your left, park in the lot. From the sign look southeast circa 150 degrees to a row of rocks along the edge of the lot. The third rock in from the water, just left of a bush, houses a small dark stone on its right side. Under that stone and a bit of salt marsh hay find the " Quonochontaug Tautog ".
CHECKED - OK 29 March 2011
Heading back east from West Beach Road (rather than going all the way up to route 1 and then down East Beach Road), just cut across right on Seabreeze and then right on East Beach Road to reach the end of pavement near Blue Shutters Beach. This is the little local beach for residents of Charlestown, as well as the southern terminus of RI's 70+ mile blue-blazed "North-South Trail". We suggest parking in the beach lot after 5PM during the summer to avoid the beach fees and pervasive No Parking signs. After parking, walk north past the blue shuttered namesake building, until you reach a well top to the west of the road adjacent to the end of pavement. Stand on the east side of the well top facing the road, "act naturally" and casually look under the small rock at the base of the small prickly cedar tree for the "Blue Shutters Bluefish ".
We planned to plant the next two micoboxes at the Charlestown Breachway, but found the area to be so inhospitable for hiding small boxes that we chose to leave them at the Weekapaug Breachway over the border in Westerly instead. To reach this spot, drive back west along route 1 until you see a left hand turn marked route 1A, Misquamicut/Watch Hill. Follow this road to Langworthy Corners, and turn left on Weekapaug Road. Drive south until you reach the brown fishing area sign on the right. Park in the dirt lot and walk south along the tops of the big rocks adjacent to the water. After you reach the first concrete stairway down to the water, walk over 22 more big rocks to 2 rock blocks before the blue graffiti. Stop and look left down to a chiseled cube in a large crevice between the big rocks. While "floundering around" a bit here, just scoot down to the left and reach under 3 small flat stones to the left of a salmon-colored stone for the "Weekapaug Flounder".
Now, turn your back on that flounder (after putting it back very carefully, of course!), and look across the water for a small cedar tree on the opposite bank. Your goal is to find two tiny stones on the south side of the crack between the two rocks south of that tree. (No other stones need be moved in order to find the microbox, and it is imperative to leave this area looking natural.) So, cross the highway bridge and follow the sandy path south to almost directly across from the blue graffiti and look under those two tiny flat stones. Hopefully, there you will find the "Weekapaug Cod"!
Hope you enjoyed the fishing!
BEFORE YOU SET OUT, PLEASE READ THE
WAIVER OF RESPONSIBILITY AND DISCLAIMER..
You can find information about this hobby at Letterboxing North America (LbNA)
News concerning this hobby is posted at LbNA Talk List