All posts by John Holyoke

John Holyoke

About John Holyoke

John Holyoke has been enjoying himself in Maine's great outdoors since he was a kid. Today, he's the Outdoors editor for the BDN, a job that allows him to meet up with Maine outdoors enthusiasts in their natural habitat. The stories he gathers provide fodder for his columns, and this blog.

No-scare bear: Carmel homeowner videotapes feeder-raiding bruin

Bear at the feeder. (Jim Thorne photo)

Jim Thorne has lived in his Carmel home for 20 years, and has enjoyed life on the edge of the woods. For the past few years, he said he has noticed an interesting phenomenon. “In past years, the pole [for the bird feeder] has been bent over,” Thorne said. “I thought it was a fat […]

Got your turkey yet? Tell us about it!

As Maine’s wild turkey season reaches its halfway point in most Wildlife Management Districts, a couple of observations: My inbox has been devoid of those dreaded messages from the Maine Warden Service informing news media of hunting accidents. That’s a good thing. Here’s hoping hunters remain vigilant and safety-conscious, and that everyone’s trips afield remain […]

Allagash ‘expose’ gives poachers too much slack

Maine Game Wardens featured in the Animal Planet TV show "North Woods Law" pose for a photo in front of the Maine Warden Service mobile command vehicle on April 5, 2012. Pictured are Jonathan Parker (left), Kim Bates, Sgt. Tim Spahr, Kristopher MacCabe and Josh Bubier. (BDN Photo by John Holyoke)

On Sunday, the Maine Sunday Telegram published a long, seemingly in-depth series of stories that, according to the paper, documents a “controversial sting” operation that took the Maine Warden Service two years to complete, and which, writer Colin Woodard asserts, resulted in “surprisingly scant results.” The target of that sting was a group of Allagash […]

Patten 11-year-old celebrates hunting grand slam

Jeffery Martin, 11, of Patten, shows off the 165-pound black bear he shot last year while completing his "grand slam." Martin shot a wild turkey, a bear, a moose and a deer in the same hunting season. (Photo courtesy of Beth Martin)

After his son experienced a frustrating bear season in 2014, dad Scott Martin wondered if now-11-year-old Jeffery Martin would want to take part in the next year’s hunt. “The year he turned 10, he spent probably close to 25 hours in the bear stand with no luck,” the elder Patten man explained. “He put a […]

Orono program seeking paddlers to learn wildwater skills

Kellen Doyle of Orono participates during a sprint race at the 2015 U.S. National Wildwater Championships in North Carolina. Doyle made the U.S. Junior National team and is competing in the world championships. (Photo courtesy of Peggy McKee)

If you’ve got an adventurous son or daughter interested in learning new skills and competing in an exciting sport they may not have tried, the Maine Canoe and Kayak Racing Organization is looking for them. MaCKRO sponsors junior and under-23-year-old wildwater teams, and workouts have begun. According to the MaCKRO press release, “wildwater is the […]

Limited edition Allagash prints available

Mark McCollough's painting. 500 prints are available. (Image courtesy of the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry)

The Allagash Wilderness Waterway is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, and AWW superintendent Matthew LaRoche says those who appreciate the region have the opportunity to get their hands on a piece of art that’s part of that celebration. Just 500 prints of an Allagash painting by artist Mark McCollough are being sold; if you’re […]

Finicky fish, windy weather make for challenging vacation angling

BDN outdoor editor John Holyoke battles the waves while fly fishing in New Smyrna Beach, Fla., recently. Holyoke eventually traded the fly rod for a surf-casting rig and eventually caught a nice pompano. (Karen Holyoke photo)

When we headed to sunny Florida on vacation last week, I packed more ambitiously than I had on a similar trip the year before. Added to the flip-flops and T-shirts, I also toted a fly rod and some saltwater flies, and planned to put them to good use. The vacation rental was on the beach, […]

Sedgwick charter captain featured on Travel Channel TV show

Captain Pete Douvarjo of Eggemoggin Guide Service scans the horizon for sharks as a windjammer sails past near Mount Desert Rock on Tuesday, July 31, 2012. BDN photo by John Holyoke

Throughout the summer months, Captain Pete Douvarjo takes all kinds of clients out on his 21-foot Parker, named “Reel Life.” Sometimes he welcomes families aboard, and the registered Maine guide helps them learn to fish for pollack and mackerel. Other times, later in the season, he takes adventurous anglers farther from shore and targets sharks. […]