Thursday, October 21, 2021

Fishing Report

The later part of this week will resemble summer just as we approached some nighttime temps in the 40's. So, the fish may act like it's the Fourth of July one day and like it's Thanksgiving the next.

Night fishermen at the head of Helen's creek off the Patuxent caught a couple dozen big spot, plenty of perch, and some keeper rockfish on bloodworms last Friday.

Spanish mackerel and bull redfish were caught near buoy 72A on Saturday in the afternoon when the gale winds subsided.

Slot redfish were consistent all week in the Potomac's Cornfield Harbor for lure casters from Harry James Creek to the tip of Point Lookout. Plenty of undersized puppy drum are there too.

Speckled trout were caught by savvy fishermen trolling bucktail tandems in the Patuxent from Sheridan Point to Half Pone Point. That stretch of water is about 12 miles long and I have heard tales of catches all week of rock and trout mixed throughout that area.

Hefty rockfish were reported caught at Benedict both north and south of the bridge and under the bridge by trollers bouncing bucktails on the bottom.

Crappie fishermen using jigs and swimming lures caught as many as twenty good-sized fish at St. Mary's Lake. The bass and pickerel fishing there is excellent, too. Shore fishermen using live minnows fished under a bobber can get a good mess for dinner.

Rockfish on the points and creek mouths are playing hide and seek for lure casters. One day they are plentiful, and the next they are few and far between. The very high tides followed by very low tides have both fish and fishermen confused.

The trollers using tandems and small umbrella rigs of bucktails and small surgical eels are doing very well in both the Patuxent and Potomac. The fish are all over, from 15 feet to the very depths of the channel in 50 feet or more. Bigger fish seem to be deeper.

Shoreline fishermen casting swimming plugs, bucktails, and spoons are still doing well at dusk and dawn. Light trollers using bucktails in shallow water are scoring. This fishing will dwindle as the water cools and clears. Old school thinking is that shallow water fishing is done by Halloween, and the deep trollers take over with good catches.

Bottom fishermen in the Patuxent at Hawk's Nest and in front of the Navy Pier report spot, perch, and hardhead. But, it is very inconsistent.

Trollers in the Potomac are doing very well catching stripers in the deeper water. There are big catfish taking those lures too. The aggressive catfish are mostly active from St. George Island and north. The farther up the river, the more catfish.

The fishing is really excellent now and we have great weather in the forecast. Old man winter is coming; now is the time to go fishing.

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Fishing Report

Bluefish and striped bass are at the top of the list for anglers in the lower bay region this week. Bluefish ranging from ¾-pound to about 3 pounds are being found chasing baitfish throughout the lower Bay, at times accompanied by striped bass. The striped bass have more of a presence in the lower Potomac and Patuxent rivers. The steep channel edge from St. Georges Island to Piney Point has been holding good numbers of striped bass and bluefish.

Keeping vigilant for breaking fish that are often marked by diving seagulls can pay huge dividends for those who enjoy casting with light tackle to breaking fish. Casting metal lures and jigs tends to be popular when toothy critters are involved; soft plastics often take a beating when bluefish are involved. 

Trolling is another option, and pulling umbrella rigs with a small spoon or bucktail for a trailer is perhaps the most popular way to troll for a fall mix of bluefish and striped bass. Trolling single spoons behind inline weights is also an effective offering when trolling. 

Shorebound anglers are enjoying good action with bluefish at the Point Lookout fishing pier and the causeway just north of the pier. The small pier under the Route 4 Bridge on the Patuxent River is another good place to fish from shore. Most are casting cut baits of menhaden or spot on a simple one-hook bottom rig with a floater cork to keep the bait off the bottom. 

White perch are steadily moving into the deeper sections at the lower ends of the Lower Bay’s tidal rivers. Fishing with bottom rigs baited with pieces of bloodworm or dropper rigs with small soft plastic dropper flies will work well. There are still some spot around, but they are quickly disappearing in the region’s tidal rivers. A few large speckled sea trout are being caught on the eastern side of the bay.

Recreational crabbing continues to be a bright spot for those hoping for a fall crab feast or to pick crab meat for the winter months. The size of the crabs being caught is something to marvel at, with some weighing as much as a pound each. They are heavy and laden with meat so do not put all of that crabbing gear away just yet. The best catches are being found in 10 feet to 15 feet of water. Recreational crabbers report that chicken necks seem to be just as good as razor clams for bait.

Fishing Report

The later part of this week will resemble summer just as we approached some nighttime temps in the 40's. So, the fish may act like it...