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MARYLAND: 45-75 miles () — From St. Jerome’s Creek in St. Mary’s County, Christy Henderson ( reports, “This week it’s a tie between Spanish mackerel and flounder. Cornfield Harbor in the lower Potomac was really hot over the weekend for the flounder. We only had two people actually catch the mackerel, but many have seen them jumping. We’re also seeing breaking rockfish and blues. The bluefish are of good size, better than last year. [Local angler] Joe Heber was fishing in the Potomac around Buoy 7 and he got into bluefish for hours. He caught about 50. Live-lining spot at the Point No Point lighthouse can be good for stripers.” From the Tackle Box in Lexington Park, Ken Lamb says action for rockfish and blues is good throughout Southern Maryland waters, with bonuses provided by Spanish mackerel. The best way to hook the “Spanish,” as they’re called by locals, is to troll a long line behind the boat, perhaps with little more than a 3-ounce inline sinker some 20 feet or so ahead of a bright silver 3- or 4-inch-long spoon. Think small. Spanish mackerel don’t like big lures. The middle and upper Chesapeake delivers barely legal rockfish and 2- to 5-pound bluefish for trollers and chummers from near the Bay Bridges down to Sharps Island Light and across to the Radar Towers area.

VIRGINIA: 75-150 miles () — From the Northern Neck, charter fishing captain Billy Pipkin ( finds a fine mixture of bluefish, Spanish mackerel and rockfish from the state line into practically all Northern Neck area waters that are more than 25 feet deep. Croakers are taken with squid or shrimp baits on bottom rigs, fished in dropoffs and holes from Smith Point down to the Rappahannock River. Some cobias, flounder and spadefish are available in the lower Chesapeake around the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel and general vicinity.


CHOPTANK RIVER: 120 miles () — (Route 50 east to Cambridge) Expect a mix of croakers, spot, perch, rockfish and snapper blues at the mouth. The Cambridge fishing bridge shows scattered white perch, spot and croakers. Crabbing has been below average.

POCOMOKE RIVER: 140-170 miles (..) — (From Snow Hill down to Shad Landing) This sounds like a broken record, but it’s true that the heat hasn’t helped the bass fishing here. Some are caught in waterlogged tree roots and pad fields early in the day.

NANTICOKE RIVER: 120 miles (..) — (Sharptown ramp off Route 313, or use the Marshyhope Creek ramp outside of Federalsburg) Upper river bass fishing along spatterdock edges has been fair, with soft plastics the best bet.


LAKE ANNA: 82 miles () — (Route 208, Spotsylvania County) Four-inch-long finesse worms fished around rip-rap and rock piles adjacent to lake and creek points will bring bass strikes. The early morning hours might coincide with a school of feeding rockfish. Have a rod ready that holds a Rat-l-Trap or some kind of jerkbait.

RAPPAHANNOCK RIVER: 47-100 miles () Sunken shoreline wood produces bass especially above Port Royal. Plastic worms and crankbaits do the job. Upper river smallmouth bass like tube jigs or spinners in mid-river rock-surrounded holes.

LAKE BRITTLE: 59 miles (..) — (Route 793, off Route 29) Bass can be caught, but you need to be fishing before the sun bakes the water. Soft plastics are the best “baits.” Crappies are sluggish, but the sunfish and catfish bite can be good.

LAKE ORANGE: 75 miles (..) — (Concessionaire: 540/672-3997; look for left turn sign on Route 20 before entering town of Orange) Bass, sunnies and catfish are willing early and late in the day.

LAKE GASTON: 179 miles () — (Route 46, Gasburg) Marty Magone reports, “Grass and docks fished with plastics will produce bass down-lake. Early risers can run up-lake for a variety of species. The cooler water above [Interstate] 85 bridge will produce bass, stripers and nice catfish without [bothersome] jet-ski traffic. Topwater lures, spinnerbaits and jigs will do just fine. The Route 1 bridge has a decent ramp for fishermen trying to cut back on the fuel costs of running up the lake.”

KERR RESERVOIR: 185 miles () — (Route 58, Clarksville) Land-locked rockfish, bass, crappies and catfish are available in waters that have run as high as 82 degrees this week.

JAMES RIVER: 115 miles (..) — (Tidal Richmond area and downstream) It’s mostly catfish right now, but even they’re not always cooperating. In fact the big blue “cats” of this river bite best when the weather is cool.

CHICKAHOMINY RIVER: 135 miles () — (Williamsburg area) Good chances for 1- to 2-pound bass up and down the river. Other species bite, too, such as catfish and perch.

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