of one he caught there on March 19 to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources’ angler’s log.
Potomac River — Ken Penrod, with the Life Outdoors Unlimited guides (301937-0100) reports that the tidal Potomac was red hot last week for largemouth bass fishing. Rising water temperatures, increased sunlight and a full moon had big females inside feeder creeks preparing to spawn. He found success pitching to fallen trees with a jig/ river bug combination. A square bill crankbait caught smaller fish but the big bass liked a jig. The next full moon later this April will result in a major spawn.
Capt. Dale Coon from Fishamajig Guide Service (240-538-1260) has been fishing for jumbo crappies in the Potomac River tributaries with good success, catching some true slabs on jigs tipped with bull minnows. Anglers fishing the Maryland or Virginia tributaries should note that the creel limit for crappies in the Potomac River main stem is 10 per person. Blue catfish are active in the river as well, with fresh gizzard shad a must for catching the big ones.
Chesapeake Bay — Although spring trophy rockfish
season doesn’t begin until April 16, catch-and-release fishing for striped bass is allowed in the main stem of the Chesapeake Bay. A few fishermen have been light tackle jigging in the warm water discharge at the Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant recently.
Capt. Dennis Fleming from Fishamajig Guide Service has been fishing for rockfish there and has reported the bite to have fallen off significantly. He believes the fish have all moved into the rivers to stage for the pending spawn.
Deep Creek Lake — Keith Lockwood said the ice is now entirely gone and the open water is inviting small boat fishing for a wide variety of fish.
Northern pike are perhaps one of the more exciting trophy fish to catch and this time of the year is one of the most productive times to fish for them. They are often found shallow this time of the year at the mouths of coves and along shorelines. They are a great fish to catch and release and some of them exceed 40 inches in length now within the lake.
Yellow perch are another favorite target and can be caught with minnows under a slip bobber. Smallmouth bass can be found on some of the rocky points.
Lake Anna — The bass action has been a little slow,
according to Carlos at High Point Marina. The upper and lower ends of the lake are producing the most fish this early in spring. Spinnerbaits, jigs, and deep suspending jerkbaits are the best choices for right now.
Some fish are moving up to the warm surface waters and feeding on bait in the afternoons, but many fish are still staying deep. Try to fish points, flats, and drop-off 6 to 12 feet deep. Schools of stripers are all over the lake, but just like the bass the best areas are the upper and lower ends.
You’ll need some patience and the energy to move around a bit as the schools are small and constantly moving. Fish are at all depths, but the best ones are hitting around eight feet. Sassy shads, Sea shads, Tooth Ache spoons and live bait all are producing fish. Lake Anna Striper Guide Service reports that a 22-plus-pound striper was caught on Easter Sunday.
Now is the time to catch the big crappie up to two pounds. They’ve fed and grown all winter and are gorging baits, preparing for the spawn. Schools are moving into shallower waters as the weather warms. Two-pound grubs, small and medium minnows, and 1/8- or 1/4-ounce spoons are best bets.