City of Salisbury
History - Very likely, Johnson's Pond was originally established as a mill pond in colonial times. As the utility of old mills gave way to modern technology, other uses were found for the impounded water. In fact, the dam that existed near Isabella street was constructed for the purpose of generating hydroelectric power. The hydroelectric dam washed out in 1933 and the present dam, slightly further upstream, was constructed shortly after 1936. The lake is used now exclusively for recreation, mainly fishing. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Fisheries Service, Freshwater Fisheries Division, manages the sportfish populations in the pond to provide a public angling resource. Fiscal resources for this work comes from fishing license sales and the Federal Aid and Restoration Fund (Dingell-Johnson Act).
Physical/ Habitat Description - At 104 acres in size, Johnson's Pond is the largest impoundment on the Eastern Shore. Maximum depth is 11 feet. Johnson's Pond is fed by multiple tributaries, however the two principle tributaries form the lake's north and east forks. These forks form a lower "main pool" which makes up the balance of the lake. The east fork is relatively shallow and featureless with the exception of rooted aquatic vegetation and a small amount of submerged timber. The north fork however, has better depth and more quality habitat including: trees, stumps, docks and rooted aquatic vegetation.
In the main pool area many Christmas tree fish "attractors" are located between the old swimming beach and the point north of it. The eastern shore of the main pool near the cemetery has steep banks with many trees in the water, however most of the habitat in the lower third of pond exists on the western shore. This habitat consists of trees, brush and limbs. There are numerous private docks located throughout the pond that provide excellent fish habitat.
Fish Species - Johnson's Pond is a Special Bass Management Area. Anglers can find information pertaining to this regulation in the Maryland Freshwater Sportsfishing Guide and also from signs posted at the launching ramp. The special regulations help maintain a well balanced bass/bluegill fishery. Excellent fishing for both these fish species exists within the pond. Anglers may also occasionally catch other species including: black crappie, pumpkinseed sunfish, yellow perch, white perch, chain pickerel, brown bullhead catfish and common carp. While not typically targeted by anglers, gizzard shad, golden shiners and chub suckers are also present in the pond and provide an important forage source for the predatory fishes.
Restrictions - There is no horsepower limitation for boats on the pond. Camping and swimming are prohibited.
From Annapolis - US Rt. 50 east towards Easton/Ocean City. Make left onto Isabella Street in Salisbury, then make a left onto Lake Street then right onto Rose Street. Gravel parking lot with paved boat ramp.
From Elkton- Take Rt. 213 south to Rt.313 in Galena. Take this to US Rt. 301 south. Take Rt.213 (Wye Mills) and take a left onto US Route 50 east towards Easton/Ocean City. Make left onto Isabella Street in Salisbury, then make a left onto Lake Street then right onto Rose Street. Gravel parking lot with paved boat ramp.
Contact Us - Any questions, comments or suggestions about the fisheries management activities on Johnson's Pond can be directed to:
Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Unicorn Lake Fish Hatchery
110 Fishing Lake Lane, Millington, MD. 21651
Phone 410-928-3643 or firstname.lastname@example.org
580 Taylor Ave, Annapolis MD 21401