- The Washington Times - Friday, July 19, 2002

Our friend Ken Lamb, who runs the Tackle Box in Lexington Park (St. Mary's County), says it seems like the whole state of Maryland and much of Northern Virginia is going after fish. Small wonder. Large numbers of Norfolk spot have invaded the lower Patuxent and Potomac rivers, as well as Virginia's Rappahannock, not to mention the little bays and Chesapeake Bay dropoffs near shore where the tasty fish can be caught.
Now add striped bass by the numbers, from the Patuxent's Cedar Point up to the Gas Docks (during weekends it looks like a boater's version of rush hour on New York Avenue) and up the Bay toward the Route 50 bridges, as well as large schools of snapper bluefish that can appear anywhere, any time.
In the upper tidal waters of the Potomac, largemouth bass and occasional stripers head the list of available fish species. One of the full-time guides on the river says flipped or pitched Berkley Power Hawgs, as well as slowly retrieved spinnerbaits in the spatterdock fields of the feeder creeks, will draw strikes from bass.
A word of warning, though: Some people around the Route 301 Bridge in Charles County say the supply of croakers changes from day to day and there's a chance that newcomers might have a tough time locating willing fish. Several reports have reached us from upper Patuxent River bass fishermen who say they have hooked legal-size stripers while fishing for largemouths around the Jug Bay area. The rockfish presence might be explained by the fairly high salinity in the river water.
Along the Atlantic shore, flounder fishermen find action in the back bays from Ocean City, Md., to Oyster, Va., but most of them are throwbacks. Not many keepers are hooked. The blue-water boats that run for hours to reach the offshore canyons, or such areas east of Maryland as the Hot Dog, Lumpy Bottom and a place known as the Parking Lot, connect on bluefin and yellowfin tuna. Much the same catches are occurring in Virginia waters around the Fingers and the Cigar.
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