Chesapeake Bay Fishing Report

Well opening week has come and gone leaving many asking, “Where are all the Trophies?” They were here in numbers the couple weeks leading into the season and we believe it has everything to do with water temps. With main bay temps hovering in the mid 50º range, this weekend is looking prime! We’ve had reports of visible spawning happening in some of the area’s tidal rivers so these are all good signs that it will be picking up!

Rockfish Report


In the upper/mid bay region anglers trolling may have a bad taste in your mouth from last week. Don’t let it get you down! Be patient and focus on what we know to be successful trends. The mouths of the rivers are hot spots as these are perfect intersecting points from where they’re spawning to where they’re headed and vice versa.

Vary your depths. Have half of your spread in the upper half of the water column and the other half in the lower part of the water column. Run Chartreuse and White until you find a pattern. Look for untouched water. These fish don’t like engine noise so try to get in spots where there isn’t so much traffic. Utilize planer boards and long lines to get your spreads away from your boat.

With water temps rising and warmer temps in the forecast, start to focus on shallower water (30′ or less) especially around the mouths of the rivers.

Some of the better areas we’ve heard over the last week have been between Chesapeake Beach and the mouth of the Patuxent River. We are anticipating this to shift north with warmer water temps in the next week.

Curt Hayman landed a nice 41″ trolling just outside of Taylors Island on the Eastern Shore side. This big girl was tricked with a 10oz. White Tandem in 25′ of water.


Chumming is going to be one of the more effective/efficient ways to target these big fish right now. They’re looking for a big delicious snack as they’re headed into the tidal rivers to do their business. We’re recommending using either big chunks of FRESH LY, or whole Bloodworms fished on the bottom in 27′-35′ of water. Utilize 1 or 2 chum buckets on the bottom. Look for areas with this water depth and muddy bottom.

Focus on the mouths of the tidal rivers around the mid bay area. Especially early in the am or just after sunset.


Anglers jigging for these dinosaurs have had a SLOW first week. Keep the faith! Warmer water temps are signifying 1) more fish moving up the bay to spawn and 2) more aggressive/hungry fish looking for 10″ BOSS BKDs to swallow. People jigging the bay bridge pilings have had success catching throwback fish (18″-25″) which are tons of fun but that isn’t filling the fridge!

Look to focus on transition points near mouths of rivers and the deep drops off the shipping channels in the main bay.

White Perch Report

The end of the White Perch spawn is here and we’re seeing less and less of these fish in spawning grounds. We’re catching them in deeper holes on the bottom, especially with Razor clams rigged on top & bottom rigs with enough weight to get to bottom. Another good bait to try are pieces of Bloodworms.

Shad/Herring Report

They’re officially running right now! Water temps are perfect for their spawn run and they’ve been caught all over the place this past week. Areas like the Susquehanna River (Deer Creek), Tuckahoe Creek and the Northern Potomac (near Fletchers Boathouse) have all been hot!

Tandem Shad Dart rigs jigged off the bottom will work well, spinner baits and even smaller Storm paddle tails retrieved slow near the bottom will catch you a few!

American Shad caught in Tuckahoe Creek this past week. Photo by Andrew Myer.

Freshwater/Largemouth Bass

In many of the areas freshwater bodies of water, we’re seeing lots of action! Pre-spawn and even some post-spawn Bass are being caught in Eastern Shore lakes and ponds. In smaller, warmer water bodies of water some topwater action has been working of late. Dropshot and Chatterbaits have also been working well.

Liberty and Loch Raven have been producing nice big fish on Jerkbaits and jigs worked slow near deep structure. Some pickerel have been caught here as well with smaller swimbaits in shallower water.

The northern Potomac area has been heating up as well. Anglers have had success with some crankbaits worked in 5′-10′ over grass beds.

The Snakehead bite is in full swing. Some of these toothy snakes are spawning or sitting on beds and could prove to be a bit picky but persistence pays dividends for sure! Look for shallow water areas with thick vegetation. Big bull minnows work well and while you’re waiting for the big one to bite, throw a chatterbait or a swimbait around the area and try your luck that way!

Andrew Myer landed this nice little bass off the bank in Tuckahoe Lake. Look for this action to heat up in the coming week!

Show us what you caught!

We’d love to see your catch! Send your photos with some simple info (your name, location, bait/technique) and any other info you’d like to share to By sending your images you are giving us permission to use them online.

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