October Fishing Fun

After eight days of ugly weather: high winds, rain, overcast, and coastal flooding, we have a return of summer.

Our hot, salty water has been replaced by much cooler and fresher water. So what happened to the fish? For openers, the striped bass were energized. The cool, wet, wind is what they love. Lure casters in the mouth of the Patuxent found the rockfish boiling the water at Fishing Point, Hog Point, the rocks off the O' Club Golf Course, and Goose Creek in the mouth of the Patuxent.

Rockfish and Bluefish love this Stinger jig lure by Rich Jenkins, Coach Jigs. These photos are from last week above Cove Point.

Poppers were very effective as well as swimming plugs and paddle tail jigs. The upper Patuxent was very good too at the mouth of St. Leonard Creek, the rocks at Jefferson Patterson Park, and Myrtle Point. Trollers found rockfish too, but they had to work for them. Reports from the Potomac were glowing, with rockfish at Ragged Point and St. Clements.

This is the beginning of the fall run of domestic rockfish as they school up and begin fattening up for the winter. Breaking fish will be on the surface. There were a few birds in the Patuxent this week. A school of breaking stripers with a mass of gulls were observed at Piney Point near Steuart's Pier.

Capt. Bernie Shea (301-672-3282) is filling his fish box with rockfish for his customers out of Solomon's Island. This was Saturday's catch.

The slot reds (18 to 27 inches) are also energized and are mixed with the stripers and in small pods in both the Patuxent and Potomac. One angler was surprised by a 31 inch red drum when it hit his Ba-Donk-a-Donk surface lure in the midst of some 20 to 27 inch stripers near the entrance to Town Creek in the Patuxent.

Puppy drum and his big brother the slot redfish (18 inch to 27 inch; 25 inch for Potomac) are plentiful everyhere.

Puppy drum and white perch seemed to have fled the swollen creeks in the midst of the storm. When the sun returned Sunday, I managed to catch a handful where I was loading the boat only a few short days before. Hopefully, the perch will be back in the warmup and normal tides predicted this week. The perch didn't go far. They just schooled up in the rivers providing plenty of action for bottom fishermen in the 20-to-40-foot drop offs.

Bluefish on light tackle in Cornfield Harbor on Saturday.

The spot are still here and the Sunday fishermen found them in the mouth of the Patuxent near the mouth of Cuckold Creek (Hawk's Nest), and at the Three Legged. Bluefish are in the Bay from Cedar Point to Point No Point. Look for birds and breaking fish. The spanish mackerel have gone, seeking the hot, salty water they require.

A lot of little flounder like this one at Point Lookout are everywhere now. A good omen for the future.

Snakeheads and catfish are on the prowl in the Patuxent from the Benedict Bridge north. The Potomac has catfish from Cobb Island to the 301 bridge and beyond. They love fresh alewife and cut eel. Crabs were unfazed by the storm and will fill your crab pot if you bait it. Chicken neckers and hand trappers will load up too.

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