Hit-or-Miss Fishing Season Continues

May 2, 2017 | The trophy rockfish season is plunking along for most trollers.


We had fish checked in all week, but there were plenty of stories of those who were unlucky. The best results seem to be from Little Cove Point to the Power Plant in the Bay on the eastern side of the ship's channel. We had fish from the Potomac and in the mid-Bay at 72A, but they seem scarcer. More experienced captains using planers and pulling as many as 40 lures at a time are getting their limits in the northern regions of our area.

It is time for the big push of rockfish we normally get the first week in May. There is a 48 to 72 hour period when all fish break loose and most any trolled lure will bring a strike. The fish all seem to sense the time to get out of the creeks and rivers and head for the ocean. If the winds are manageable and you are fortunate enough to be there when it happens, there will be terrific action.

Smaller rockfish in the shallows have been reported taking cast lures in the mouth of the Patuxent and in the Potomac from Cornfield Harbor to the St. Mary's River. These fish are under the trophy season limit but will be available when the limit drops to 20 inches on May 16th.

My prediction of bottom fish and white perch turning on this past weekend fell flat. We have not seen more croaker after the first ones were brought in on April 23rd. There was an unsubstantiated report of croaker caught off the Flight Test Pier in the mouth of the Patuxent on Sunday. An experienced perch fisherman tried his luck Saturday on a creek off the Patuxent, and found no strikes in all his favorite holes. Quade's Store in the Wicomico River off the Potomac still has seen no croaker, but the catfishing is excellent. Fishing will improve but my crystal ball is broken.

Pound netters found spot and blues in their nests this week in the lower Potomac. There is just a handful of these fish, but are the first of the hordes (we hope) to come.

Freshwater fishing in St. Mary's Lake is very good for bass, crappie, and bluegill. Live crickets will bring instant strikes by bluegill in the standing timber.

Bob Phillips and Scott Halo landed these two trophies near Taylors Island in the Bay.
Bob Striegel with his 40 inch, 25 pound striper from 72A that took a white parachute lure.
Dale Maxwell, Jr., landed this 38 pound, 48 inch rockfish off St. George Island in the Potomac on a chartruse Umbrella rig.
Steve Helmrich trolled outside the Gas Docks for this 42 inch, 30 pound striper.
Russell Schackelford got this 48 inch, 34 pounder from the Gas Docks.
Jim Batch. Jr., trolled of the Gas Docks in the Bay and brought home this 40 inch, 25 pound striper.