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BURKE LAKE: 29 miles (★★) — (Ox Road, Route 123, Fairfax County) The heat has taken its toll, but if the weather forecasters are correct, the weekend might be a little cooler and the bass and sunfish at least will show up on lures and baits.


UPPER POTOMAC RIVER: 35-100 miles (★★★) — A lot depends on very strong thundershowers. If it rains hard and long, it’ll mess up water color and flow. Until then, however, go wade the shallows and cast grubs, jigs, short worms or spinners and crankbaits into deep rock-sheltered pockets.

DEEP CREEK LAKE: 179 miles (★★★) — Lake guide Brent Nelson (240/460-8839) catches bass by skipping tubes under floating boat docks almost anywhere on the lake. The worm-and-bobber bluegill fishing is especially good for vacationing children. Nighttimers catch a few walleyes on drifted shiners or nightcrawlers.

SUSQUEHANNA RIVER: 65-100 miles (★★) — Warm water and traditional shallow, sandy shores outside Havre de Grace have made bass fishing very tough.


MARYLAND: 45-75 miles (★★★) — Christy Henderson of Buzz’s Marina ( on St. Jerome’s Creek in St. Mary’s County, says, “There have been breaking rockfish outside Point Lookout — nice schools of them [and] 16-inch keeper flounder have reappeared in the same area. The Mud Leads are fantastic with jumbo croaker at night. They measure 16 inches and up. We’ve also had reports catches of red drum. The bluefish are everywhere and we get reports of trout, as well.” Ken Lamb of the Tackle Box in Lexington Park echoes Henderson’s report and adds, “Both speckled and gray seatrout have been responding to trolled bucktails this week.”

Speckled trout have been mixed in with rockfish from the Point No Point Light to the Targets on the 40 foot ledge of the western shore. “The trout are 18 to 27 inches and the rockfish are up to 32 inches. Small bucktails trolled slowly right on the bottom is the key,” said Lamb, who added that the stripers are plentiful at the Gas Docks. Anglers are getting their limits every day. Elsewhere in the Bay, rockfish and blues are hooked by trollers, chummers ad live-liners from above the Gas Docks across the Bay to Boody Point and above the Bay Bridges to Love Point, but the fishing is not as good as it has been in the lower Maryland parts of the Bay. Incidentally, white perch and some croakers have been caught off the rock jetty at Sandy Point and by boaters around the various bridge abutments.

VIRGINIA: 75-150 miles (★★★) — Charter fishing captain Billy Pipkin ( said the croaker fishing has been picking up steam especially along the main shipping channel east of the Northern Neck land. Pipkin says the best hauls have come from 45 to 50 feet of water. Locations holding grasses have yielded greater catches in both size and number. “Trolling action is going well along the western shoreline. From the Piankatank River up to Windmill Point, there have been schools of mixed blues and Spanish mackerel. The fish are relatively small with some larger specimens hitting the rails at the mouth of the Potomac river from Smith Point up to Point Lookout,” Pipkin said. As far as sea trout are concerned, the mouth of the Rappahannock River has been a little more consistent this week for the weakfish, but many of the trout are undersized. Speckled trout are active in the Mobjack Bay area and there has been increased trout activity between Indian Creek and the Great Wicomico river. Meanwhile, from the lowest parts of the Chesapeake Bay Julie Ball ( said that red drum continue to provide good topwater action as they school around lower bay shoals and structure. “Ben Shepherd and Rudy Levasseur, both of Chesapeake, had a good day when they released six bull reds hooked from a school they spotted while flounder fishing this week,” she said. Black drum are available around the third and fourth islands of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. Spadefish are schooled around the buoys and bridge-tunnel where trigger fish and sheepshead also are possible.


CHOPTANK RIVER:120 miles (★★★) — (Route 50 east to Cambridge) A few bassboaters score up around Denton and general area, but most river boaters prefer the saltier water from Cambridge down to the mouth. Croakers, spot and white perch are pretty much a sure thing, with rockfish and blues also showing up now and then.

POCOMOKE RIVER: 140-170 miles (★★) — (From Snow Hill down to Shad Landing) No improvement in the bass numbers. It simply has been too hot, and the river is known for its lower-than-normal oxygen levels in summer.

NANTICOKE RIVER: 120 miles (★★) — (Sharptown ramp off Route 313, or use the Marshyhope Creek ramp outside Federalsburg) Slow going for bass in all sectors.


LAKE ANNA: 82 miles (★★★) — (Route 208, Spotsylvania County) If you arrive before sunup to launch your boat at Anna Point or Sturgeon Creek, to name two popular areas, there’s a fair chance you’ll run into a school of feeding stripers. Have a hard jerkbait tied to a good casting outfit. As the day begins, throw topwater lures around any obstacle, anywhere, and see if a bass won’t rise to the surface lure. After strong sun hits the water, switch to soft plastics.

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