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Located just east of Route 130 in the town of Sandwich, Massachusetts, Peters Pond is arguable one of the most productive year-round trout ponds on Cape Cod.
By John D. Silva

This 127-acre natural kettle pond has an average depth of 25 feet and a maximum depth of 54 feet. Nine species of fish can be found living in Peters Pond. Sporting species primarily include largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, brown trout and rainbow trout. Peters is heavily stocked twice a year with browns and rainbows (and occasionally tiger trout). And although the exciting Atlantic brood-stock salmon-stocking program has now ceased, there’s still plenty of trout, bass, and panfish action to be enjoyed by anglers of all skill levels.

The water in Peters is clear and cold. The habitat supports a quality holdover trout population that provides action all year long. Catching a 3- or 4-pound trout is a reasonable goal for anglers that put their time in here. Some wily veteran hold-over fish sometimes approach trophy sizes. Largemouth and smallmouth bass populations serve as an alternative warm-water target for sport fishermen. Among the panfish species available, the yellow perch fishing can range from good to outstanding, especially during winter when fishing through the ice (tip: look for deep-water holes). There’s nothing quite as enjoyable during a cold midwinter day than a searing hot frying pan full of perch fillets sizzling on a camp stove on top of a frozen expanse of water.

Although trout can be caught year-round, the best all-around trout fishing occurs during the spring and fall when the pond receives its biannual stocking of trout. When winter arrives, anxious cold-weather ice anglers keep an expectant eye on the sheltered cove adjacent to the east-end boat launch, which usually freezes up first and remains safe longer than the rest of the pond. Cape Cod winters are fickle, so safe ice is not always achieved each winter. Yet, anglers who count Peters Pond among their favorites will bundle up and wade or shore fish the open water all winter long (as long as the skim ice holds off).

About three quarters of Peters Pond is developed. There is also a summer camp and a gravel pit located on the northwest end. Public access to Peters is provided by a paved boat ramp on the east side of the pond. To get there take route 6 to exit 2, then head south on route 130. Take a left onto Sandwich/Cotuit Road and follow about 2 miles. Then take a right onto John Ewer Road and look for the paved parking area on the right. There is also a town-owned access area (formerly owned by Hewlett-Packard) with a well maintained boat launch on the north end of the pond off of Quaker Meeting House Road. For fish stocking schedules, licensing information, pond maps and more, go online to the Mass DFW website: www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/dfg/dfw/hunting-fishing-wildlife-watching/fishing.

Whether fishing from shore, by boat, or standing on top of a frozen sheet of ice, more often than not Peters delivers. When ice fishing, drill a pattern of holes along the near-shore drop-offs (DFW pond maps online will help you identify these areas.) and set tip-ups with bait about a foot off the bottom. Be sure to leave a few holes open for jigging for trout and perch. Use light jigging rods with 4-pound test line and small spoons, jigs, and Curley Tail soft plastics, 1/8 to 1/4 ounce, tipped with a meal worm or a small fluttering strip of cut bait. When fishing in open water cast small spinners, Rapalas, and spoons; a very effective way to catch fish while remaining active and engaged. Fly fishing using dry flies, streamers and nymphs is similarly effective. The surest way to catch fish in Peters is by using bait: worms, shiners, grass shrimp, and Powerbait. When fishing by boat you can work the shorelines and actively cast spoons, spinners and tiny crank baits. One of the best ways to cover more water and improve your chances of hooking up – especially on unseasonably cold or hot days – is by trolling; using down riggers or lead core line with Rapala minnow baits 1 to 4 inches in length. Alternate your trolling depths until you find the sweet spot (often dictated by a sudden change in temperature within the water column). Anchoring or dead-drifting live bait along the bottom is also an effective option for both trout and bass alike. But if you are limited to shore access only, anglers can wade and fish just about the entire length of shoreline.

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