Dur­ing the week is fa­vor­able to catch­ing fish

Maryland Independent - - Sports - South­ern Mary­land lakes and ponds — Patux­ent River — Po­tomac River —

Dur­ing the week is fa­vor­able to catch­ing fish

Last week­end, I took my kids fishing at St. Mary’s Lake for some mother-daugh­ter fun. By fun I mean none of the kids hooked an­other’s eye, and they all were breath­ing when we packed up to go home.

Plenty of fam­i­lies were out­side en­joy­ing our South­ern Mary­land wa­ters dur­ing the Me­mo­rial Day week­end, de­spite the mostly cloudy con­di­tions and oc­ca­sional rain.

At St. Mary’s River State Park, the park­ing lot was

REEL RE­PORT

packed and the boat ramp was busy all morn­ing and af­ter­noon, ac­cord­ing to one park po­lice of­fi­cer I chat­ted with as she was check­ing wind­shields to en­sure every­one paid the en­try fee. The shore­line was crowded with an­glers of all ages, dog own­ers tak­ing their

pooches for a swim and kayak­ers pad­dling by.

It can be hard to catch fish un­der those con­di­tions. When the shore­line is so crowded, you’re rub­bing el­bows with the per­son next to you. If you can find some time to visit your fa­vorite fishing spot dur­ing the week, you will find the con­di­tions much more fa­vor­able for catch­ing fish than the week­ends from now through La­bor Day.

An­thony Han­cock, as­sis­tant man­ager at Gil­bert Run Park in Dentsville, said the fishing con­di­tions haven’t changed much over the past week with the up and down tem­per­a­tures and off and on rain keep­ing the fish in a state

of limbo.

The bass bite has been con­sis­tent, al­though most are on the small side. Han­cock said top­wa­ter lures are a pro­duc­tive way to tar­get bass on an over­cast day. On sunny days, he rec­om­mends fo­cus­ing on slower-mov­ing pre­sen­ta­tions to tempt the bass.

The bluegill in Wheat­ley Lake still have not started to spawn in any great num­bers. Most of the big ones are hold­ing in 5 to 8 feet of wa­ter near ad­ja­cent spawn­ing ar­eas. A small piece of nightcrawler un­der a bob­ber is the ticket to catch­ing them. Han­cock sug­gests adding a split shot or two to get the bait a lit­tle deeper where pre-spawn bluegill are hold­ing.

Ken Lamb of the Tackle Box in Lex­ing­ton Park (301-863-8151) re­ports the Town Creek Pier is open on the week­ends and fishing there has been very good at twi­light and into the night. About one in five rock­fish have been keep­ers and spot, croaker and perch are plen­ti­ful there, too. The Patux­ent opened com­pletely for rock­fish yes­ter­day.

Life Out­doors Un­lim­ited guide Ken Pen­rod (240-447-2206) saod the up­per Po­tomac has been the “per­fect river” and the “best it’s been in years” when wa­ter lev­els are safe.

The “ledge pat­tern” has

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