Chesapeake Bay Fishing Report
Fishing has been as hot as the weather lately! Anglers are quickly catching their limits of Rockfish in the Mid-Bay area whether they are Jigging or Chumming/Chunking. Now that schools are out and Summer is officially here, what better thing to do than to get the entire family enjoying some lines in the water?! If you’re headed out on the water or headed to the beach, make sure you stop by and grab everything you need to make your trip successful AND fun!
Jigging the Mid-Bay region has been great recently. The Bay Bridge pilings have been especially good these last few weeks with anglers catching their limit in no time. The Eastern side of the bridge has been better, but nearly every piling is holding some fish. Using a 1/2oz-3/4oz G-Eye jig paired with a BKD in Limetruese or “Go-to” has been hot. Some other spots that have been hot lately have been Swan Point, the Key Bridge and the mouth of the Magothy River.
The Chumming/Chunking bite continues to stay hot as it has been over the past couple weeks. We want to make sure everyone is aware at this point…you MUST be using in-line (non-offset) circle hooks if you are Chumming/Chunking. We’ve been using 6/0-8/0 hooks with a 24″-36″ leader and 2oz of weight in 20′-35′ of water. Best baits to use are FRESH Bunker (LY), Soft Crab or Bloodworms. If you’re using Bunker, make sure the hooked baits are FRESH. There is a huge difference between Fresh and Frozen. The Frozen Bunker works well for the cut chunks as attractant.
Some of the better areas this week were just north of the Triple Buoys around Swan Point, Podickory Point and Hackets was pretty productive. Make sure you’re fishing during a transitioning tide. This is will be the most productive time to fish as bait and Rockfish are moving around and most active during this time. If you’re out there during a slack tide, make sure you have snacks/beers and enjoy the scenery!
Trolling has been decent this past week. Some of the hotter baits to pull around have been drone spoons and hoses. Look to focus on the shipping channel ledges between Poplar Island and Swan Point. That is a large area to cover but fish are all over the place right now. Target different parts of the water column by trolling some spreads deep, and some spreads shallower. Fish are being caught in 20′-40′ of water and some of the hotter colors have been Red and Blue. The key here is patience, finding clean quiet water and of course a transitioning tide.
The Summer Perch bite continues to stay hot. Whether your beating the banks targeting shallow fish or out on the boat vertical jigging deep hard bottom, you have a great opportunity to catch some nice Perch. In shallow water you’ll want to target docks, rip-rap, submerged structure and grass lines. Fish a spinnerbait slow and steady near the bottom and you’ll hook up with one eventually! If you’re in deeper water, you can jig or bottom fish for them. Using smaller spoons or jigs tipped with bloodworm, razor clam or soft crab you can vertical jig the Bay Bridge pilings for nice White Perch. If you find hard bottom in deeper water, look to use these same baits on a top & bottom rig and wait for the double hook-up!
Headed to the beach? Make sure you stop by on your way there! Grab some bait, sunscreen, sand spikes and some Crazy K’s Shark rigs. Anglers fishing from the shore in Assateague are landing Sandbar & Sandtiger Shark while fishing Tuna Head. Surf casting fresh Bunker has also been productive.
Fishing the inlet has been decent in the evening. Some Blues and smaller Rockfish have been caught there recently. Some keeper Flounders have been caught there recently as well. Look to target them with White Gulp Mullet on a jig worked near the bottom.
Crabbing has been slow. There have been a few good days here and there but in general, it is much slower than in years past. Main thing you want to focus on is a transitioning tide in 15′ of water or less. Drop a trap loaded with either Razor Clams, frozen Bunker or Chicken Necks and let it sit for a little. Trotlining has been the most successful method but even then it’s taking a while to catch a few dozen at most. Look to do this in 8′ of water or less. Make sure the depth of the entire trotline is consistent. You don’t really want your line rolling over humps and pockets. Try to keep the entire 600′-1200′ in a consistent depth.
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