- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
By James DrakeThank goodness we finally escaped that foul furnace of fetid heat we all endured earlier this month.
Far more pleasant temperatures have been enjoyed this week. Surely, youíve got to know itís going to get hot again.
The spot fishing has improved and live-liners using those spot as bait for the far bigger rockfish are having some real good success.
White perch are everywhere and besides the perch and spot, croaker, channel bass, rockfish and blues are all possible now in our home waters.
Lots of the fish are little ones, but just think of that as money in the bank for happy fishing trips in years to come.
Mind those thunderstorms, but right now is a dandy time to be fishing.
Southern Maryland lakes and ponds Think topwaters and know that early morning hours and late in the day will be your best shot at success. This is a great time of year for a little after-dark fishing, too.
Itís a whole different experience seeing all the fireflies with a background symphony from the frogs and crickets, but I didnít say it was a bad one. Give it a try for you just might be very surprised at the results.
Mattawoman Creek Ken Penrod with the Life Outdoors Unlimited guides (301-937-0010) told me the far upcreek water is really thick now with algae and the spatterdock looks like some wildfire recently came through. Youíre better off targeting the wood cover with spinnerbaits or Case Magic Stiks.
The grass out from the state park to the main river is holding bass, but the numbers seem down quite a bit from just a few weeks ago.
Nearby, the Occoquan River is rated as worthy but know it is beat to death in some areas by those that came before you. The grass in the Chicamuxen Creek is holding lots of fish, but itís also getting heavy fishing pressure.
Upper Potomac River Generally, the river is quite low and very warm, but despite that, the fishing isnít too bad. At Edwards Ferry, fish the ledges below the launch and the Maryland side both above and below the power lines. At Lander, either direction from the ramp is good if you throw to the underwater canopy ledges.
Tidal Potomac River Andy Andrzejewski with the Reel Bass Adventures guides (301-932-1509) reported water temperatures around 88 degrees and the topwater bite pretty decent until about 8:30 every morning. You can extend those hours on cloudy days.
The most productive baits for the RBA pros have been a 1/4-ounce popper worked along the grass edges and a grass frog thrown over the grasses and into open pockets. Those grass frogs probably miss more than they hook, but every attack is still a pretty nice adrenaline rush.
Andrzejewski said chatterbaits and spinnerbaits are working best once the sun is up and if you find a concentration of bass, Berkley Power Hawgs and stick worms in dark colors should get attention from many of them. A jig worm worked along creek ledges continues to produce a quick limit.
The LOU guides have been working the Virginia side coves by the Woodrow Wilson Bridge with good success and said Gunston Cove, Pomonkey Creek and Hallowing Cove are reliable stops downriver.
Lower Potomac River Croaker have become thick in some areas and Ken Lamb from the Tackle Box in Lexington Park said some really big ones are taken around the mouth of the St. Maryís River. Lots of white perch are also now swimming throughout the lower river and flounder are always a possibility down in Cornfield Harbor.
Patuxent River Some days the spot seem absolutely everywhere around the mouth and they appear to be coming in all different sizes.
Lamb said fishermen can find them now at Sandy Point, Kingston Hollow and Hawkís Nest, plus you can expect the schools soon to be moving up to Helenís Bar and St. Leonard Creek. Right now, you can catch croaker and white perch all the way up to the Benedict bridge.
Deep Creek Lake Many anglers are saying the largemouth bass catches have not been up to par this whole fishing year. Marylandís Department of Natural Resources did confirm two years ago that some were infected with Largemouth Bass Virus, but this could just be a naturally down cycle, too. The smallmouths however are abundant and willing to hit topwaters early in the day.
After that, the recommendation from LOU guide Bret Winegardner (301-616-9889) is to skip plastics under boat docks or work grass edges back in the coves.
Lake Anna Stripers have been found schooling in the lower lake from The Splits down to the dam. Look for them at first light on top and then trollers and live bait fishermen start working the 25- to 40-foot depths.
Largemouths are in typical summer patterns. Early, try working primary points near deep water with Spooks, chuggars, prop baits, etc. After that, look deep over humps, brushpiles or start skipping under the docks. If you just have to have some crappie, you might try night fishing and key in on those docks with the overhead lights on.
Chesapeake Bay I havenít heard of any Spanish mackerel in our waters yet, but there are plenty of perch, croaker, rock, channel bass and some blues.
Fred Donovan from the Rod ĎNí Reel Dock in Chesapeake Beach told me live-liners are doing real well catching bait out at Old Rock, Holland Point and on the eastern side around Buoy 2. Then, with the spot now hooked as bait, they look for rockfish around False Channel.
The Gas Docks has been another hotspot to find rockfish using spot baits and Lamb reported the bottom fishing good almost everywhere.
Of course, croaker action is better at night, but trollers can be hooking stripers anytime. A rising tide usually makes them hungry around Buoy 77.
Both blues and stripers are being chummed in around the mouth of the Potomac and some speckled trout have been reported from the lower bay and Tangier Sound.
Atlantic Ocean Sue Foster at Oyster Bay Tackle in Ocean City said the flounder fishing has been excellent lately with lots of happy smiles for the pictures taken at weigh-ins. A few sea trout were caught, as well, in the back bays.
Ocean City surf fishermen are getting the usual catch of sharks and skates with a few kingfish, spot, sea trout and snapper blues occasionally seen.
The near offshore wrecks have plenty of sea bass around and some real nice flounder. Way offshore, the canyon runners are taking big eye and yellowfin tuna, plus some bluefin have been reported out at the Hot Dog.