POORSalt waterOCEANInshore...

**** EXCELLENT*** GOOD** FAIR*

July 26, 1991|By Peter Baker

**** EXCELLENT*** GOOD** FAIR* POOR

Salt water

OCEAN

Inshore **** Night fishing for speckled sea trout and sea trout has been pretty good, with cut spot taking sea trout along the south jetty at Ocean City and night fishing at the Ocean Pier turning up some specks. Surf fishermen at North Ocean City and Assateague have been taking large spot. Back-bay fishing remains good for flounder on drifted minnows, and spot are hitting there too. Best flounder fishing seems to be in the deeper holes.

Offshore **** -- From Delaware Lightship to the Third Lump, spanish and king mackerel as well as cobia are being taken. White marlin continue to hit at Washington Canyon, with bluefin tuna active at the Hot Dog. Headboats continue to hit on large black sea bass, flounder and sea trout.

CHESAPEAKE BAY

Lower bay **** -- Bluefish still are active in this area, but the most improved catch seems to be flounder in Tangier Sound, Hoopers Straits, the Middle Grounds and the mouth of the Potomac. Best baits are cut spot or peeler crabs fished on the bottom. Spanish mackerel have been mixing with 2- to 5-pound bluefish at the Middle Grounds, Kedges Straits, Target Ship, Cedar Point, Tangier Sound and the mouth of the Potomac. Sea trout have been hitting peeler crab on the bottom more frequently in Tangier Sound, Cornfield Harbor, Kedges Straits, Potomac River, the Middle Grounds, the Honga River, Mud Leads and Solomons. Large spot and small croaker have been taking bloodworms in Tangier Sound, Cornfield Harbor and virtually anywhere there is an oyster bottom.

Middle bay **** -- Scattered schools of bluefish in the 2- to 4-pound range -- with occasional catches of blues up to 15 pounds -- have been breaking on the surface and moving fast. Good locations for blues have been the Stone Rock, Mud Leads, Parkers Creek, the West River, the Gooses, Thomas Point and Hacketts Point. Jumbo spot and small croakers have been hitting bloodworms fished on the bottom in the mouth of the Choptank River, Drum Point, Holland Point, in Eastern Bay and at Thomas Point.

Upper bay **** -- Big white perch have been active at Hart-Miller Island, Craig Hill Light, 7-Foot Knoll, the Key Bridge, Belevedere Shoal, Fairlee Creek, Elk River and Chester River as well as the Corsica River. On the Susquehanna flats, and in the Gunpowder River, Dundee Creek and Saltpeter Creek, largemouth bass fishing has been improving, with the best bets artificial worms on bright days and spinnerbaits or buzz baits on cloudy days. Fish the edges of the grass beds.

POTOMAC RIVER

Washington and upper tidal *** -- Most of the good bass fishing here is in the grass beds at the mouths of creeks or on the flats with buzz baits or spinnerbaits early and late in the day.

APoint Lookout **** -- Sea trout, spot, smallish croaker, flounder and some blues are being taken from Cornfield Harbor around the point.

OTHER RIVERS

Patapsco River **** -- Bloodworms and grass shrimp will do very well on white perch over hard or oyster bottoms. Cut bait will turn up catfish.

Patuxent *** -- Sea trout catches have been good at night on peeler. Spot are in and off the river mouth, blues are a good possibility on trolled spoons and red hoses.

Magothy *** -- Spot can be caught at the river mouth over oyster or rocky bottoms on bloodworms. White perch are in deep holes and taking bloodworms or grass shrimp.

Susquehanna River *** -- In the lower river, bass have been taking minnows and topwater lures early and late in the day around islands, bridge pilings and piers. Catfish have become more active on clam snouts and chicken livers.

Choptank River *** -- White perch, catfish, spot and an occasional blue at the fishing pier in Cambridge.

Chester River *** -- The best fishing here still is for white perch with grass shrimp or bloodworms; catfish on cut bait. Spot are moving in off the river mouth.

Freshwater lakes and rivers

Deep Creek Lake *** -- Largemouth bass have been holding along the drop-offs and falling for crankbaits and shiners. Smallmouth bass fishing has been good on minnows and grubs fished in 12 to 18 feet of water late in the day. Night crawlers have been turning up good catches of yellow perch in 6 to 10 feet of water, and bluegills have been active on worms fished in

5 to 8 feet.

Upper Potomac River **** -- Despite high temperatures, fishing for smallmouths remains good. Early or late in the day is best, but switching to artificial worms or salted grubs will help midday fishing. Areas where there are drop-offs and quick current will be best. Large catfish have been holding in the deeper holes. Use cut bait or chicken livers.

RESERVOIRS

Conowingo *** -- The water level is low in the reservoir, but smallmouth bass are taking Sluggos, salty grubs. Buzz baits early in the day and late. Largemouth bass action at the mouth of Broad Creek and the humps of the old railroad bed.

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