Catch a slam out on the wa­ter

Maryland Independent - - SPORTS - Jamie Drake jamiedrake­out­doors @out­ Patux­ent River —

You’ve prob­a­bly heard the word slam in a lot of dif­fer­ent set­tings.

Denny’s has a grand slam on the break­fast menu, for ex­am­ple. In one of my fa­vorite card games, pitch, play­ers bid on how many tricks they can take in a round. I used to play it all the time as a kid. When a bid­der took all the cards in a round, we’d call that a grand slam. Both baseball and ten­nis have their own ver­sions. Even turkey hunt­ing has one.

You can get a slam dunk in bas­ket­ball. I’ve never been to a poetry slam, but some peo­ple en­joy that kind of en­ter­tain­ment. And just a few days ago, our area got slammed by a 1 1/2 inches of rain when thun­der­storms passed through.

So it should come as no sur­prise that you could catch a slam, as well.

Life Out­doors Un­lim­ited guide ser­vice con­sid­ers it a grand slam when a client catches a small­mouth, large­mouth, rock­fish, cat­fish and wall­eye in one out­ing on the Po­tomac River.

The 2017 Ch­e­sa­peake Sum­mer Slam tour­na­ment tar­gets striped bass, blue­fish, mack­erel, red­fish, speck­led trout and takes the best three out of the five species for to­tal com­bined length. And bass an­glers can com­pete in the Susque­hanna Fish­ing Tackle Sum­mer Slam this Sun­day launch­ing out of the North East River An­chor Ma­rina on the Up­per Ch­e­sa­peake Bay in Mary­land.

No mat­ter what kind of fish­ing you pre­fer, don’t slam the door on any op­por­tu­nity to get

out on the wa­ter this sum­mer. South­ern Mary­land lakes and

ponds — An­thony Han­cock, as­sis­tant man­ager at Gil­bert Run Park in Dentsville, said there’s a con­sis­tent bass and bluegill bite early and late in the day in shal­low wa­ter. Dur­ing the heat of the day, fish re­treat into deeper, cooler wa­ters.

With the wa­ter cur­rently stained from al­gal blooms, Han­cock rec­om­mends us­ing bass lures with char­treuse color and tar­get­ing grass and wood cover, es­pe­cially near deeper wa­ter. Live bait is work­ing best for bluegill and re­dear sun­fish right now. Small pieces of nightcrawler or gar­den worms fished un­der a bob­ber should put a bend in the rod.

Ken Lamb of the Tackle Box in Lex­ing­ton Park (301-863-8151) re­ports rock­fish are ev­ery­where on struc­ture in the shal­lows. Jig­gers on the stone piles, wrecks and Gov. Thomas Johnson Bridge pil­ings are find­ing good ac­tion on tide changes and at dusk and dawn. Most fish are un­der­sized, but a lit­tle pa­tience can pay off with an out-sized fish close to 40 inches.

Trollers are catch­ing rock­fish on the oys­ter bars and at Sheri­dan Point. The Solomons Char­ter Cap­tain’s As­so­ci­a­tion fleet (­ re­ports white perch an­glers are get­ting good catches on just about every oys­ter bar

within the river.

Reel Bass Adventures guide Andy An­drze­jew­ski (301-932-1509) said that warm wa­ter tem­per­a­tures in the mid 80s have brought on a good early morn­ing top­wa­ter bite along grasses and spat­ter­dock fields. Buzz baits, pop­pers, and grass frogs are catch­ing fish.

As the sun gets high on the wa­ter, An­drze­jew­ski rec­om­mends switch­ing to a wacky-rigged, weight­less stick worm to work the same ar­eas. Thick grasses hold bass that will re­spond to crea­ture baits or jig and craw com­bos. Bluegill and small bass will co­op­er­ate with fly rod­ders on creek flats near sandy banks.

LOU Guide Kenny Pen­rod (240478-9055) rec­om­mends hit­ting the wa­ter dur­ing lower mov­ing tides that co­in­cide with low light hours for your best chances of suc­cess.

Lamb re­ports an­glers are catch­ing good-sized rock­fish in the mouth of No­mini Bay and near Ragged Point. Mid-river around the Gov. Harry W. Nice Memo­rial Bridge, jig­gers and trollers are do­ing well, along with trollers in the mouth be­tween Buoys 5 and 7. The rock­fish are evenly mixed with cat­fish near Morgantown for

McCot­ter’s Lake Anna Guide Ser­vice (540-894-9144) rec­om­mends tar­get­ing schooled bass from the Route 208 re­gion down to the power plant with soft plas­tic jerk­baits and top­wa­ter plugs. An­glers in the mid- and up-lake re­gions can find bass with crankbaits and worms on off-shore struc­ture like rocks and brush.

The best crap­pie ac­tion is on bridge pil­ings, deep brush, chan­nel edges and cool trib­u­taries. Get a cou­ple dozen small min­nows and

From LOU guide Keith Barker (301-509-2102): Barker fished the Mat­ta­woman Creek last week­end and ad­vises bass an­glers to stock up on Whop­per Plop­pers in ei­ther the 90 or 130 sizes. The top­wa­ter bite is “slam­ming,” es­pe­cially at high tide over flooded veg­e­ta­tion. If there is cloud cover, the top­wa­ter ap­proach will work through­out the day.

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