- The Washington Times - Friday, August 2, 2002

Incredible catches of young bluefish are possible for private boaters and charter fishermen all over the Chesapeake Bay. For example, earlier this week three of us fished from Captain Eddie Davis' 48-foot Edith Rose (301/872-5871). We left the lower Potomac, came around Point Lookout and almost instantly ran into a school of surface-feeding rockfish, followed by acre upon acre of topwater eruptions by bluefish that busted bait as far as the eye could see. Small spoons, surface poppers, even bass-style propeller baits were struck immediately. We kept a couple rockfish and a goodly number of blues. Why? An egg-washed, flour-battered, fried fillet from a 2-pound bluefish tastes as good as any fish that comes from the salty waters of the Chesapeake. Honestly.
Elsewhere, bass fishermen in the tidal Potomac find action in main-stem grass beds, sunken barges and trees, as well as various underwater rock piles up and down the river from the Wilson Bridge to western Charles County. In the earliest minutes of daylight, some of the river points from below the Mattawoman Creek down to the Potomac Creek will have striped bass cruising the rocky waters, looking for a breakfast of white perch. A quickly retrieved Rat-L-Trap lure or loudly splashed surface popper might see plenty of action. If that doesn't work, switch to largemouth bass, with spinnerbaits, plastic worms, even surface baits recommended.
In the freshwater mountain rivers, recent rains have helped raise water levels, even if only by a little. The smallmouth bass, however, are feeling the difference and catches have been fairly good. This is especially true in Virginia's James and Shenandoah rivers. From the upper Potomac River, Maryland DNR biologist Angel Bolinger reports that it's the time of year for white miller insect hatches and sometimes frantic topwater bass catches.
In the distant Atlantic Ocean waters east of Ocean City, Md., tuna catches are good one day, poor the next, and white marlin numbers aren't spectacular despite what you might hear from people who promote the upcoming White Marlin Open fishing tournament that promises payouts in excess of $1million.

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