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BURKE LAKE: 29 miles (***) — (Ox Road, Route 123, Fairfax County) Early and latest hours possible are good for bass that like topwater lures and soft plastics. Sunfish continue to delight flyrod users. A small number of crappies has been noted by minnow dunkers.

AREA 2: CENTRAL, WESTERN MARYLAND

UPPER POTOMAC RIVER: 35-100 miles (***) — Terrific smallmouth bass catches are possible even if you cast only loud, whirring topwater lures that sport a small propeller. Crankbaits, tubes, jigs and grubs also work. Be sure to make extra long casts because the water has been so clear the bass can see you. The Knoxville to Lander area has been wonderful, but Montgomery County anglers aren’t complaining.

DEEP CREEK LAKE: 179 miles (***) — Lake guide Brent Nelson (240/460-8839) says that the smallmouth bass and largemouth bass fishing is really going great guns now. Practice skipping tube baits into the narrow openings under floating docks. The bluegills are turning on and these sunfish can be whoppers.

SUSQUEHANNA RIVER: 65-100 miles (***) — Keith Lockwood says the fishing in the lower river and the Susquehanna Flats has entered the warm-water summer pattern now. Not that many stripers are still available, but the darker hours of the day can produce a few. Largemouth and smallmouth bass are hooked occasionally around the Port Deposit rocks.

AREA 3: CHESAPEAKE BAY

MARYLAND: 45-75 miles (***) — Water temperatures are rising in the upper Bay and dissolved oxygen levels are dropping, which is not good for fishing. All the same, chummers are out giving it a shot and they’re connecting on some bluefish and stripers. Not all upper Bay fishermen are in favor of chumming, believing it to remove even more oxygen. Scattered white perch, croakers and rockfish have made for interesting fishing between the Sandy Point rock jetty and the Bay Bridge itself, as well as the not-too-distant Thomas Point lighthouse. In the middle parts of the Maryland portions of the Bay the croakers have moved into the Eastern Bay, Sharps Island Light and general mouth of the Choptank River. Sight-casting topwater lures or rattle baits to surface eruptions of rockfish and bluefish continues to be great sport. As we head south into Southern Maryland waters, Lexington Park’s Ken Lamb says that chummers caught some stripers and bluefish in the Bay earlier this week, but it was slow going. “However, flounder are now on all the edges and dropoffs in the bay and rivers,” he said. Croakers are possible in the evenings from the Middle Grounds up to the Hooper’s Island area.

VIRGINIA: 75-150 miles (***) — Some good topwater rockfish and bluefish action is noted by sportfishing boaters around the Smith Point area and south of there toward the Rappahannock River. Carry a rod with a popping lure wherever you go. Croakers, spot and even odd young redfish bite now and then along the Northumberland County shore. Down the Bay, Ken Neill, of the Pensinsula Saltwater Sport Fisherman’s Association says the flounder bite has turned on at the Cell (Buoy 42) area, the structure of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, and the Back River Reef. “Croakers are everywhere,” he added, “but the Cell/buoy 42 area would be a good place to visit. Spadefish are biting at the Cell and the Bridge-Tunnel.” Neill added. Cobias are chummed uip at Bluefish Rock. Virginia Beach’s Julie Ball (www.drjball.com) reported, “Black drum hook-ups are coming from the four artificial islands of the Bay Bridge-Tunnel, where casters are picking at fish on bucktails and Storm Lures.” Ball added that a 13 1/4-pound spadefish was landed at the Monitor-Merrimac Bridge Tunnel. The fish underwent processing at Long Bay Pointe Bait and Tackle by Ball, who is an International Game Fish Association representative, for consideration as a line class world record.

AREA 4: EASTERN SHORE/MARYLAND

CHOPTANK RIVER: 120 miles (***) — (Route 50 east to Cambridge) Croakers, perch and spot are all over the wide mouth area of the river. If you use bloodworms you’ll catch all three species. The Cambridge fishing bridge (adjacent to Route 50) is good for spot and perch. Bass catches are meager up around Denton.

POCOMOKE RIVER: 140-170 miles (***) — (From Snow Hill down to Shad Landing) This river probably is the best of the bass rivers on the Eastern Shore. Good action now on short, soft worms, also on shallow-running crankbaits.

NANTICOKE RIVER: 120 miles (**) — (Sharptown ramp off Route 313, or use the Marshyhope Creek ramp outside Federalsburg) From Marshyhope Creek on out into the main stem, there’s a good chance of hooking bass if you can parlay an early morning with an outgoing tide that can activate the feeding urges of bass. Look for early hour striper hits along marsh bank points in the Vienna area.

AREA 5: CENTRAL VIRGINIA

LAKE ANNA: 82 miles (***) — (Route 208, Spotsylvania County) Early and late hours are fine for bass when plastics and topwaters are used around points and brush piles. If you get there before the rooster crows you might hook a couple of feeding stripers above the Splits.

RAPPAHANNOCK RIVER: 47-100 miles (***) — The upper river has been fine for waders looking for a hit from a smallmouth bass. The Fredericksburg sector delivers catfish and little else, but downstream the bass chances improve as 4-inch plastic worms or Baby 1-Minus lures cast around blowdowns and creek mouths turn the trick.

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