Fish­ing is good

Maryland Independent - - Sports - Jamie Drake

The fish­ing is good all over South­ern Mary­land. If you can put down your smart­phone for a few min­utes to take a break from play­ing Pokemon Go, you’ll find that there’s some­thing for ev­ery kind of an­gler. Whether you like fly fish­ing, a worm and bob­ber, or a bot­tom rig is the set-up of your choice, you’re go­ing to catch some fine fish this time of year. South­ern Mary­land lakes and ponds — An­thony Han­cock, as­sis­tant man­ager of Gil­bert Run Park in Dentsville, said a lot of bass are be­ing caught through­out the day. Some an­glers are catch­ing more than 20 bass in one out­ing with a few nice 3- to 5-pounders mixed in here and there.

The bass are bit­ing well early and late in the day on top­wa­ters, small crankbaits, fi­nesse worms and jig and craw com­bos. Bass are hold­ing around wood cover along the bank as well as in off­shore drop-offs. Some nice re­dears are be­ing caught in 10 to 15 feet of wa­ter. And the bluegill are oblig­ing the bob­ber and worm folks along the shore­line. It’s a great time to take a kid fish­ing for these feisty sun­fish.

Ken Lamb of the Tackle Box in Lex­ing­ton Park (301-8638151) said St. Mary’s Lake has bass, bluegill and pick­erel in good num­bers. Fly fish­er­men us­ing pop­ping bugs find the bluegill ea­ger to hit early in the morn­ing.

Patux­ent River — Bot­tom fish­ing has been rea­son­ably good lately and you can ex­pect a trio of croaker, white perch and spot. There have been some dol­phins sighted in the river search­ing out a quick meal of these fish.

Lamb re­ports croaker in the river from Point Pa­tience to Bene­dict. The key to croaker fish­ing is time of day — the fish bite at dusk and all night long. Day­time in the sum­mer heat just isn’t go­ing to work for croaker, but the perch will bite all day pro­vid­ing the tide is mov­ing.

My kids have been spend­ing the week at Bunky’s Kids Fish­ing Camp on Solomons Is­land and have had a real blast do­ing some bot­tom fish­ing from their char­ter boats and even from kayaks. The spot have been keep­ing them busy, but these spir­ited fish are too small to be din­ner. They make great bait live-lin­ing for rock­fish though.

Po­tomac River — Reel Bass Ad­ven­tures guide Capt. Andy An­drze­jew­ski (301-932-1509) ad­vises an­glers to get on the wa­ter early or late in this sum­mer heat and take ad­van­tage of the good top­wa­ter ac­tion that lasts un­til the sun is di­rectly on the wa­ter. Pop­pers and grass frogs should catch good qual­ity bass in main river and creek grass beds.

After the sun is up, switch to large plas­tic worms or craw­fish im­i­ta­tors fished in grasses or along de­fined edges. Hard­cover, fished with fi­nesse worms and spin­baits, will pro­duce bass. Marsh runoffs with dropoffs in front are good places to fish plas­tics and shaky heads

dur­ing the out­go­ing tide. An oc­ca­sional cat­fish will take plas­tic worms. Ju­ni­ata and Susque­hanna

rivers (Pa.) — The guides from Life Outdoors Un­lim­ited re­port the wa­ter lev­els are low so an­glers should be ex­tra cau­tious. LOU guide Ja­son Shay (717-507-4377) said the fish­ing has been good and the best fish have been caught in the early morn­ing be­fore the wa­ter warms.

Shay has been do­ing well on sil­ver-bladed spin­ner­baits with blue or pur­ple skirts and an as­sort­ment of top­wa­ter lures. The wa­ter tem­per­a­ture is re­ally heat­ing up and he re­minds an­glers to re­turn fish to wa­ter as quickly as pos­si­ble.

Deep Creek Lake — An early top­wa­ter bite for small­mouths is the re­port. Ryan Roszell at Bill’s Out­door Cen­ter in Oak­land (301-387-3474) re­ports buzzbaits and pop­pers are catch­ing small­mouth bass but the large­mouth ac­tion has been slow. Top­wa­ter lures like buzzbaits and pop­pers are at­tract­ing strikes this week. Min­nows and nightcrawlers are on the menu for perch and pike. First and last light are the best times to wet your line un­less you like get­ting both sun­burned and skunked.

Lake Anna (Va.) — The folks at High Point Ma­rina (540-895-5249) re­port most of the bass have moved into deeper wa­ter, main lake points, ledges and deeper struc­ture. There are still some strag­glers in the shal­lows, but the qual­ity fish are deep. The up­per end of the lake is the most pro­duc­tive and fish are on al­most ev­ery point that has some type of cover on it. Deep-div­ing crankbaits that run 14 to 18 feet and NABZ 5” Wacky Worms are get­ting a lot of bites.

Stripers are school­ing in the main lake from the splits down to the power plant at 25 to 35 feet. Trolling is a pop­u­lar way to catch them and lime green um­brella rigs, pearl or pearl bue sassy shads and tooth-ache

spoons are suc­cess­ful as well as live bait.

Ch­e­sa­peake Bay — Get out the steel lead­ers be­cause the blue­fish have def­i­nitely ar­rived. Lamb re­ports chum­ming works and the blue­fish have been in the 1 to 3-pound range. Co­bia are in the lower bay and have been caught chum­ming, chunk­ing and trolling.

Mike Hen­der­son of Buzz’s Ma­rina (301-8725887) re­ports the boats leav­ing his launch­ing ramp are suc­cess­ful in a ra­tion of four out of 10. Croaker are bit­ing at sun­set. They are mostly in the 10- to 12-inch range and will take squid, blood­worms and shrimp ea­gerly. At­lantic Ocean — Bob Fos­ter of Oys­ter Bay Tackle in Ocean City (410-524-3433) re­ports the back bays are loaded with small floun­der. A few keeper floun­der have been caught be­tween the U.S. Route 50 Bridge and Martha’s Land­ing. Gulp! swim­ming mul­let con­tin­ues to be the hot bait. An­glers cast­ing Gotcha plugs, buck­tails and spoons from the U.S. Route 50 Bridge had sev­eral nights of blitz­ing blue­fish ac­tion.

Tip of the week

Co­bia can be part of the catch when you’re out in the bay. Chum­ming is the best way to at­tract these mas­sive fish that can top out around 50 pounds. Ef­fec­tive baits in­clude fresh men­haden, crabs and — the most pop­u­lar co­bia en­ticer around here — live eels.

Mary­land doesn’t have any size or pos­ses­sion limit for these brown beasts, but once you en­ter Vir­ginia waters the min­i­mum size is 40 inches and an­glers can pos­sess only one with a max­i­mum of two co­bia per boat.

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