Fishing for largemouth bass near floating dock and moored pontoon boats has been very good lately at Deep Creek Lake. Casting a variety of spinnerbaits, soft plastics and crankbaits is the ticket to enjoying this excellent fishing opportunity.
Fisheries biologist Alan Klotz sent in this report from the western region.
With the generous amount of rainfall and relatively cool weather – trout fishing in Garrett County is still pretty good for early summer. I have been seeing good hatches of lime sallies and sulfurs on area trout streams. Mr. Bob Mundell sent in this picture of a gorgeous 27 inch brown trout he recently caught in the Casselman River and writes – “I just am thankful that I was fortunate enough to catch and release such a dandy brown.......KUDOS to the MD DNR Fisheries Service and TUs involvement in Maryland’s trout streams.”
The Freshwater Institute made another generous donation to the State with 280 trophy-sized rainbow trout (2 – 4 lbs each!) that were stocked at several locations in the Youghiogheny River last week. The Put and Take Area in Friendsville, the Delayed Harvest Area downstream of Friendsville, and the Catch and Release Area all received some of these football sized trout. Pictured is Kyle with one of these big trout caught and released using a white Rooster-tail.
The MD DNR Fisheries Service recently completed a comprehensive fish population survey of the Savage River Reservoir. We documented sixteen fish species including largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, walleye (a 33.5 inch, 13.3 lbs specimen!), bluegills, black crappies, pumpkinseeds, yellow perch, and rainbow trout. The reservoir will be drained this fall to make necessary gate replacements in the dam. Plans are being made to restore the important gamefish and panfish species once the repairs are completed and the reservoir is refilled in the spring of 2010. There are a lot of legal size largemouth bass (season opened on June 16) in the 12 – 16 inch size class, as well as nice sized bluegills and black crappies and anglers are encourage to harvest these fish prior to the drawdown this fall. However, please be advised that there is a fish consumption advisory due to methyl-mercury risks – please go to the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) web site to decide how many meals of fish per year one should consume.
Fisheries biologist John Mullican also sent us some good news for fishermen wanting to fish the upper Potomac this weekend. The upper Potomac River has finally returned to normal flows with water temperatures running in the mid-70s. A moderate phytoplankton bloom has given the water some color and fishing has been pretty good for all species. Smallmouth bass have been taking a variety of lures and you can probably catch a few on just about anything right now. I have had particular success using small, deep-diving crankbaits that dig the bottom and bounce off the rocks in 3 to 5 feet of water near current. Crankbaits are also one of the best options for taking one of the Potomac’s large walleye as well. Fisheries Technician Josh Henesy holds up a couple of large walleye collected during a recent electro-fishing survey before releasing them. Although the Washington County portion of the river is best known for walleye, anglers shouldn’t overlook the Harpers Ferry to Point of Rocks stretch. When the action slows down, try bouncing tubes or 4” worms on the bottom in pockets on the edge of swifter current. Current breaks near the water willow grass beds are particularly productive.
Fishermen in these two regions who love their largemouth bass are beginning to see the fish fall into a summer pattern of behavior. Water temperatures are warming up and the largemouth bass are spending more time loafing in the cool shade of old docks, brush or under thick mats of grass during the day. During this time period casting small plastic craws or stick baits into the grass and letting them fall through are producing some very large bass. Craws, jigs and spinnerbaits worked around deep sunken wood is another good strategy for lazy day time bass whether they are in the regions numerous lakes and reservoirs or tidal rivers and creeks. This happy angler caught and released her personal best at Prettyboy Reservoir.
In the early morning and late evening hour’s shallow water fishing with surface lures such as frogs, buzzbaits and poppers can offer some very exciting fishing. Fishermen know largemouth bass are known for their explosive surface strikes but it never fails to thrill even the most seasoned angler. Fishing these lures over or near thick grass will often get the same results later on in the mornings or earlier evening hours.
Fishing for bluegills is about at its summer zenith with bluegills hitting small rubber legged poppers or a simple worm under a bobber. Fishing for channel catfish and carp can also offer good fishing for bank fishermen in many of the two regions lakes and tidal rivers.
Most of the regions tidal rivers have calmed down in regard to flows and water clarity and fishing has been good for largemouth bass in the upper reaches of many of the rivers. The largemouth bass are looking for cool shade now that the weather is getting hot and warming up water temperatures. Casting soft plastics, spinnerbaits and crankbaits near or under old docks, fallen tree tops and anything that offers shade is a good strategy this time of the year. The thick grass is also a good place to look for lounging bass and dropping weedless soft plastics through the grass or retrieving buzzbaits and frogs over grass are good tactics for bass lying under the grass. Fishing a falling tide in rivers such as the upper Pocomoke usually offers the best fishing on the outside edges of spatterdock fields and grass.
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Reservoir Bathymetry information:
The Maryland Geological
Survey has bathymetry maps on their website:
Links to freshwater flows:
Latest real time stream flow for
Gunpowder Falls near Parkton.
Latest real time stream flow for
Gunpowder Falls At Glencoe.