Trophy Rockfish Season is Nearly Here!

Howdy folks! This week we’ll cover the upcoming trophy rockfish season starting next Saturday, April 15th. We’ll also cover the remaining White Perch run as well as the Shad run going on in the area. We’ve had quite a few warm days over the last few weeks, which is quite nice. That has water temps creeping into the mid to upper 50s and has the fish in active feeding moods. With decent weather predicted over the next week or so, we expect the fishing to only get better once the wind dies down.

Trolling for Trophy Rockfish

Trophy season starts Saturday, April 15th this year and many people are gearing up for it. We’ve got all the gear you need from Planer Boards to Rod Combos to Rigs. Many of you that attended our Trolling Seminar have a jump on the other guys out there but if you’re looking to gear up for it, we are here to help! Trolling so far in the early season has been pretty productive in the deeper channels down south as well as channel ledges as far north as┬áBaltimore Light.

Trolling for trophy rockfish in the Chesapeake Bay.

Great tandem rig for trolling for trophy rockfish in the Chesapeake Bay.

The trick with this method is to spread it out first and then narrow down to what’s hitting. We’ve had good reports on white tandem rigs as well as mylar parachute rigs. Bigger fish are being located near the bottom of the water column but with an early start and warmer water temps, you’ll start to find them in the middle to the top of the water column.

Jigging for Trophy Rockfish

The best place to start targeting trophy Rockfish when jigging is near/around deeper structure and transition points near deeper water. Channel ledges down south are popular migration channels for big stripers as they move up the bay looking for that spawning ground. The Bay Bridge will hold fish all year round and can produce 20-30 fish per hour on a good tide. The big sizes will be mixed in with the 20-35″ fish that love to hang out by the rock piles. Look to use 1/2oz. to 2oz. jig heads with 6-10″ BKDs.

The Remaining White Perch Run

The White Perch run is still in full swing, much like the past couple weeks. Productive spots have been places like Tuckahoe Creek, Greensboro and the upper Chester River. Look to use the Panfish Assassins on a jig head or a shad dart. Small spoons tipped with either Blood Worms, Grass Shrimp or Minnows will also do the trick.

Hickory/American Shad Run

This is the time of year where you’ll find Hickory Shad running in the area especially in the creeks/rivers.

Chesapeake Bay Fishing Report April 7th, 2017

Smalls spoons like these are great for catching Shad.

Best bets for catching them is using either small spoons running them tandem or singularly. Spinner baits and Rooster tails will also catch quite a few Shad. Watch the water temps and once they rise a bit more, you’ll start to see more numbers biting.