Chesapeake Bay Fishing Report August 21, 2015
Midsummer schoolies are here folks! From Swan Point outside of Rock Hall, down to Poplar Island, anglers are having fun chasing around schools of Stripers and Blues. Sting Silvers and P-line jigs from 1-2.5 oz have been killing it in gold and pink/white with the recent rainfall and flood tides.
Key things to look for are hard ledges that change depth quickly up to 10 feet of depth change or more. That plus the right weather will necessitate breaking fish. The jig bite is still good on the Bay Bridge. However, most of the fish on the Eastern Side of the Bridge have either moved north to the Pipeline or south to Brickhouse Bar down to Gum Thickets. These guys can be caught on 3/8-3/4 Mission Fishin jig heads in black/gold or chartreuse. The trolling bite is still hot as blues and rumors of Spanish mackerel have been appearing down south from 83A to Brickhouse Bar.
‘Tis the season for drone spoons and planers. Small silver drones on number 2 planers in 18 to 35 ft of water have been the most productive enticing keeper Stripers. We are at the time of the year reporting solid topwater success, primarily off of Gibson Island, Hackett’s Point, and bridge pilings early in the morning or late in the evening. Try using White and Black Smackit-Jrs.
Switching things up, the bite on bait has remained constant as Stripers are starting to dissipate from Love Point and moving to Podickory, Hackett’s, Tolly’s, and Thomas Point.
Chumming and chunking has still remained effective and the most reliable as smaller spot are still hard to come by. Look for mud bottom in 25 to 35 ft of water. Drop fish finder rigs with 1.5oz of weight and 1 in steaks of alewive on the back, and free floating alewive on large bobbers with a 10 ft leader.
As far as live lining is concerned, fishing has been great! The only problem? Finding spot small enough to live line. Podickory and Sandy Point, as well as the bridge pilings, have been phenomenal the past few days, barring you can find the school and anchor up on them.
Bluefish are here full swing, and the influx of freshwater into the Bay this year is keeping them south for the most part. Anglers are finding breakers on the eastern edge of the main channel from the Bridge down to Poplar Island in 10-30’ of water chasing alewive and small bay anchovies and silversides. Though they are an aggressive fish from the get-go and have been known to bite a bare hook, there is a method to catching them. Trolling being the main method. Think small and fast: little Drone Spoons, Clark Spoons, Tony Acettas, and even Kastmasters, in silver or gold, tipped with bright pork rinds. These are effective for going through schools, all behind number 2 Sea Striker Planers, from a casting standpoint. Instead of throwing trolling spoons, try throwing smaller Kastmasters and Hopkins spoons up to 1 oz with 40lb mono leader. This swill help to avoid line chafe, and also in case stripers, or Spanish mackerel are in the area. For general baiting work your key ledges around Hackett’s, Tolly’s, and Thomas Point. Stay in 25 ft of water and chum alewive on bobber rigs as well as suspending a few with egg sinkers around ¼ oz, to get chunks down in the water column a bit.
We are starting to hear some rumors around the mid-bay. But we have yet to confirm any with picture evidence. The talk is of a few being caught down south, mainly around Eastern Bay and Poplar Island, trolling drone spoons and being mixed in with breaking stripers/blues. Not much more to speak of just yet, hopefully, they will make their way up to the Annapolis area in the weeks to follow!
The Mid-bay has had a growing population of Red Drum over the past 25 years. However, amidst the puppy drum we commonly catch in the shallows, they are now being caught in common places we would also catch stripers. Reports of folks snagging large Red Drum upwards of 50 pounders or more, especially down the mid-bay from Poplar to Chesapeake Beach. You can’t go wrong with a peeler crab or a soft crab bait down around Stone Rock and the Gooses in 20 to 25 ft of water, however that is only a portion of their diet. Several boats down south have been catching them on small Drones and Clark Spoons, trolling intermingled with Bluefish, Rockfish, and Spanish mackerel. They have been seen breaking numbers in various locations around Tilghman Island up to Poplar Island. If you are holding your mouth right with a jig (BKD’s, Bass Assassins, Z-Mans), primarily darker copper colors, it can be the ultimate test to a light tackle angler.
Luckily we are starting to pick up some smaller spot. However, the problem is, not enough. Dolly’s Lump, Thomas Point, and Tolly Point have been prime locations for Spot on oyster reefs in 15 to 20 ft of water on bloodworms and razor clams, as well as soft crab.
Tolly’s has been hot folks! Though it took them forever, they are finally here in 18 to 23 ft of water. Numerous reports of plus sized croakers up to 17 in have been made off Tolly Point. Primary baits have been bloodworms and soft crabs, although small tandem rigs commonly used for flounder, with Berkley Gulp in Pink and Chartreuse 3 and 4” swimming mullet have been a hot as well.
Nothing new here! Grab your ultralight and some Bert’s Spinners, Rooster Tails, Shad darts, small jigs and small Tony Acettas and have a ball in all the major creeks and rivers. Anywhere with structure, primarily rock jetties and old docks, wrecks, and so forth, have and are still producing big black backs up to 14”. Primary colors have been orange and black along with hot pink.
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