The large ocean rockfish visiting the Chesapeake Bay to fatten up for winter aren’t showing any signs of leaving. Greg Buckner, the same charter fishing captain who was featured in The Washington Times on Nov. 9, along with a photo of a 55-1/4-pound striper held by angler David Whitt, has done it again.
This time, Buckner, aboard his Miss Susie charter vessel, was trolling a white umbrella rig below the “HI” buoy not far from the Patuxent River mouth when a 57-pound rockfish slammed into the lure. Edward Reinhardt Jr. of Catonsville, Md., reeled in the fantastic striper.
The big fish hit the lure only 85 feet from the boat.
“The strike was unbelievable,” Buckner recalled. “When it struck, it bent the rod [clear down] to the water. I will never forget the sound of the reel drag going off, just screaming.”
More information and photos can be seen at www.misssusiecharters.com. The Maryland rockfish-keeping season closes Dec. 15, while Virginia’s ends Dec. 31.
From Ken Lamb’s Tackle Box store in Lexington Park comes word that deeper holes inside the Patuxent River are loaded with white perch. “They’re in water as deep as 60 feet,” Lamb said. “Bloodworms will get them.” Lamb also mentioned that large rockfish are traveling up the Potomac now as far up as St. George’s Island and Stewart’s Pier, where Brian McHugh landed several over the weekend, including a 42-incher.
Trophy-sized stripers also have snatched up trolled lures at the Cove Point Gas Docks, Hooper’s Island Light, plus buoys 70, 72 and 72A.
From Buzz’s Marina in St. Jerome’s Creek, Christy Henderson (www.buzzsmarina.com) said, “The fishing for the big stripers has picked up this past week. Twice as many in the 30- to 40-inch range came in this weekend as the weekend before. The boats are trolling from Buoy 72 on the channel edge toward the Target Ship and also around Smith Point to the mouth of the Potomac. Breaking fish are still everywhere with some keepers mixed in at the Middle Grounds.”
Tidal river action good — The Potomac River, especially in the Wilson Bridge area, was good to us Tuesday. Sting Ray grubs and medium depth crankbaits fished close to the rocks between the bridge and the Spoils Cove delivered largemouth bass and channel catfish. Smaller chartreuse, curly tail grubs on 1/8-ounce jig hooks brought us some heavy crappies inside and outside Spoils Cove.
Rockfish, some of them keepers, have been “eating” Sassy Shad lures around the mouth of Port Tobacco River, as well as buoys 5 and 8.
Virginia needs help from hunters — The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries wants continued assistance from deer hunters during its chronic wasting disease surveillance efforts. State biologists want 550 deer heads for CWD testing from a 1,190 square-mile area, and more samples are needed. Staff will be collecting deer heads from hunter-killed deer for CWD testing at select check stations Saturday beginning at 9 a.m.
In Frederick County, samples are needed from west of Interstate 81 and north of Highway 50. The participating game check stations are Cather’s Market, 2765 Northwestern Pike; and Crossroads Grocery, 119 Cedar Grove Road. Both are in the Winchester area. In Shenandoah County, samples are requested from west of Interstate 81 and north of Highway 263. The participating check stations are Larkin’s Grocery, 19004 Senedo Road, near Edinburg; Graden’s Supermarket, 6836 John Marshall Highway, in Lebanon Church, and Walker’s Cash Store, 3321 Back Road, Woodstock.
Hunter participation during CWD surveillance efforts is critical. By submitting deer heads for testing, hunters will enable the state to monitor an area for the presence of CWD more effectively.
The deadly disease was recently reported in a deer in Hampshire County, W. Va., 10 miles from the border with Virginia’s Frederick County. In subsequent testing of approximately 190 deer by West Virginia, an additional three CWD-positive deer were found within two miles of the original discovery. Persons who have questions about CWD can visit www.dgif.virginia.gov/cwd.
Chincoteague Waterfowl Show/Auction — Nov. 25-26, at the Chincoteague Island Community Center on Deep Hole Road. Decoy and wildfowl carvers display their wares for competition and sale. See also antique decoys and painting demonstrations. Information: 757/336-3478.
Trout Unlimited chapter meets — Dec.1, 7:30 p.m., at the McLean VFW Post 8241, 1051 Spring Hill Road, McLean. The public is invited to this meeting of the Northern Virginia Chapter of Trout Unlimited as guide and fly tyer Eric Stroup presents a program on fishing Spruce Creek and the Little Juniata River near State College, Pa. The program will be preceded by a fly tying session at 6:45 p.m. Information: www.nvatu.org.
Look for Gene Mueller’s Outdoors column Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday, only in The Washington Times. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org