Do you love big bluegill?
I'll admit, I'm lazy. Why expend a lot of effort and gas trying to find ponds, when all you have to do is open up Google Earth, zoom in on your area, and start looking?
I know that I've found a LOT of ponds in my area that I never even knew were there. Some are actually small lakes. Most of them are named "OKNoNameResevoirXXXXXXX", replace the X's with a serial number. These are all flood-control dams.
Most of the creeks in my part of the state are low-gradient streams. They've carved a deep ravine in the alluvial soil deposits, making for a steep bank leading from the flood plain down to the bank. Many times, the level of the water is 20 feet lower than the surrounding floodplain. When we get a good hard rain event, many of these streams will rise 20' or more. Trust me, I've seen it! Thus, the reason for all the flood-control dams and small lakes.
One thing to remember, is that unless a pond you find is located in a park or wildlife management area of some kind, then that pond is private. You'll have to get permission from the land-owner to access and fish the pond.
Finding a pond easy. But, once you really learn how to interpret ariel/satellite images, you can spot a lot of things. My home lakes was made on a local creek. You hardly ever see "current" in this creek, as there is a low-head dam a couple miles downstream of the lake's big dam. Basically, it's a river-run impoundment, a long, narrow lake that never gets out of the banks of the original creek. It does get kind of deep, though. Down by the low-head dam, it gets close to 20' deep. I was looking at this creek on Google Earth several years ago. Once I zoomed in, I realized this little creek does get some pressure, as I spotted a canoe, a kayak, and I think, a 2-man bass boat. There's no "launch ramp", but there is a spot with a dirt "slide" where a small boat can be launched. Something told me to start looking at a side creek that dumps into this one, and wouldn't you know it, but I found another low-head dam! I've tried to get to this second dam, but that little creek narrows down A LOT, and the last time I got close, there was a massive log-jam the completely blocked upstream passage.
I do the same thing - zoom in as close as I can to see what might be there.
I have found a TON of small ponds within a few miles of my house, and Ive started cataloging them. Now, finding the owners is the next step.
David...that google thing is a great aid, as Allen pointed out. That is how I find a fair number of small park, municipal and public venues with good fishing.
Don't overlook spillways below millponds either...these are great fishing hole in the spring when fish are moving up stream to spawn and feed.
yep,i nave found ponds that i have walked past for years.love google earth.can actually see weedbeds on some views
One other little tip I forgot to mention:
If you do recon on foot or by car, especially in the woods, do so in the Winter, when all the leaves are down. This makes it easier to see into the woods.
Love this tip, Allen. I downloaded Google Earth and have started mapping out target ponds and lakes for the Spring season. Thanks for sharing.