Deep sea fishing, sometimes referred to as charter fishing, is one of the most exhilarating angling experiences available.
The thrill of landing a cod, haddock or even a shark and then hauling it in is second to none, and will have you coming back time and time again.
Deep sea fishing has become hugely popular up and down the coast of Maine, with chartered trips running throughout the summer taking everyone from beginners to seasoned professionals for a taste of the action.
What is Deep Sea Fishing?
As the name suggests, deep sea fishing takes place several miles off coast where the waters are much colder and deeper.
Chartered trips can go anywhere from a few miles to seventy miles off coast depending on what species they are targeting and the time of year.
Particularly good spots for deep sea fishing include ledges and other obstructions on the seabed which are used as current breakers.
There are several methods employed by deep sea fisherman.
Commercially and occasionally on chartered trips, nets are used which allow for large hauls of fish to be caught by trawling over large areas.
However, most pleasure trips stick to using heavy duty rods and equipment which allows anglers to target particular species and enjoy the thrill of the fight.
Few sights are as breathtaking as a strong, beautiful fish leaping from the water in a bid to break free.
What Fish are on Offer?
There are many species of fish on offer to deep sea anglers, with the majority of chartered trips offering the usual cod, haddock, red hake and red fish.
Other popular species on offer include pollock, flounder and red fish, and others may be available depending on where you are fishing and the bait and technique used.
You are allowed to keep the fish that you catch as long as they are within state guidelines, and many Guides will only be more than happy to fillet your catches for you if you are on a chartered trip.
Shark fishing is also often associated with deep sea fishing and is often combined during chartered trips.
Sharks such as the blue are reasonably abundant off the coast of Maine and can be readily caught using the appropriate techniques, with larger sharks such as porbeagles or makos also found occasionally.
These are much larger though, and will require specialist equipment to land successfully.
How Can I Get Started?
If you are lucky enough to own your own boat, then the appropriate licenses and equipment will allow you to head out to sea as and when you wish.
However, the majority of deep sea fishing takes place in groups aboard chartered trips led by Captains and Registered Maine Guides.
The major advantage of these group trips is that all equipment and necessary licenses are provided for you on the day.
Additionally, the cost of these trips is very reasonable, particularly if you go as part of a larger group.
No previous fishing experience is required as the Guides will be more than happy to show you the ropes and get you on your way to catching your first big fish.