It was a successful day of early-season ice fishing on Swan Lake Sunday, Jan. 6 for Waldo County couples Karen and Sam Mehorter of Belfast and Kimberly and Mark Hansen of Northport.

The couples caught several fish, including a 23-inch lake trout and 13-inch brook trout, on the ice near the Mehorters' camp on the lake, a spot located just outside Belfast.

The group fished most of the day, using eight tip-ups, in beautiful weather, which included a few morning snow flurries. They started fishing about 7:30 a.m., although Sam would have liked to have been on the ice at 5 a.m., Karen said, and finished about 3 p.m.

Kimberly caught the largest fish of the day.

The group had several other bites and a few close calls, but all the other fish got away, with some even adding insult to injury by stealing the bait.

It was the first time fishing for the foursome this season. The group fished through six to seven inches of ice in the cove, with the furthest trap located about 150 yards from the shore.

The Mehorters said the area near their camp is known for good fishing, with Sam once taking a 27-inch lake trout and others catching larger fish, including salmon, at the spot.

Karen said she has finally decided to join her husband for the fishing fun.

Sam has held a New Year's Day fishing gathering for years. In fact, about four years ago, the Bangor Daily News wrote an article on the gathering, which includes watching the tip-ups and cooking moose, elk and deer meat during the day.

Sounds like a typical Maine outdoor adventure.

Courier Publications sports staff can be reached by phone at 207-594-4401 or by email at