canoe tip over

Friday Fishing Tips, 7-8-2022 – Jeff Gross

by Jeff Gross, contributing writer

Photo: Lynn University

It has been 8 years since there was a capsized canoe/rough water rescue on Salmon Lake in Belgrade Maine. Each year the USCG small boat “HIS IDEA” is deployed TAD (Temporary Additional Duty) to the Belgrade lakes region of Maine. The deployments are usually during the weeks of Memorial Day and the July 4th Holidays. HIS IDEA is assigned Fisheries Operations and Bikini patrols as well. 

July 6th the small boat was called upon to rescue a Maine family that were battling 2 foot white cap waves that were swamping their canoe. The canoe was observed about 100 yards offshore struggling against the conditions. When HIS IDEA arrived on scene the family tried to direct their canoe to a nearby dock when the canoe capsized. Fortunately, the family swam to the dock that was close and the canoe was bailed out and then towed half a mile to the families’ lake front camp. 

While there is a tinge of humor in this article, the situation was a serious one as the canoe occupants were not wearing their life jackets. If the canoe had capsized 100 yards offshore when they were first spotted, tragedy may have occurred. HIS IDEA had a trying time to navigate the rough waters while securing the canoe and its owners. The small boat took 3 quick waves over the transom and instantly had 4 inches of water on the floor. The point of this paragraph is anytime conditions get threatening put your personal flotation devices (PFD) on; if you are in the water, it is too late. Storms are increasingly becoming stronger as of late. All fishermen can attest that the winds have been horrible in 2022. Wear you PFDs and live to Boat, Canoe, Kayak, and Fish another day.

For those of you that fish alone like this writer, a neat little device that can be readily fabricated is a cell phone holder to take pictures of you and your fish. Metal Super Markets in Warwick, RI can cut a 9″x8″ x 0…25″ aluminum plate for $34.00, and it fits nicely on the bench seat or can fit well between your legs in a Kayak. For you ladies, you might want to have Metal Super Markets round the corners and edges as to not have sharp leg cutting edges. Iottie makes a decent cell phone holder. “One Touch 4” was the holder of choice. Target has them for $24.95.  Iottie was chosen as the adhesive base is extremely strong to the point that one needs a prying device to get it off a glass windshield. Also, the “One Touch 4” has multiple adjustments for vertical or horizontal pictures. The combination of the aluminum plate and Iottie makes a rugged little platform and was heavily tested this deployment and was found to be worth every penny.

See you next week.


Jeffrey “Jeff” Gross spent 21 years as an Analytical Chemist at the USCG R&D Center in Groton, Connecticut, Woods Hole Laboratories, and Helix Technologies. Changing careers is a “great learning experience for everyone”, Jeff says, and I’m an avid outdoorsman and conservationist, a student of the sciences, and the world. The US holds too many wonders not to take a chance and explore them”.

Jeff is the Model Train and Railroad entrepreneur. Proud Golden Retriever owner. Ultra strong Second Amendment Advocate and Constitutionalist. “Determined seeker of the truth”. 

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