It was a cool September and a cooler October so far, so we have the perfect conditions for a super rockfish season.
The stripers are in the Potomac and Patuxent in good numbers and size. Lure casters in kayaks and bigger boats are finding fish both blind casting around structure and chasing breaking fish.
Trollers are doing well with tandems and small umbrellas deep; and with single bucktails in the shallows. Number 17 and Number 18 Chrome Tony spoons trolled behind a 12 ounce in-line weight is ideal for these fish.
Point Lookout has rockfish on the rocks of the Causeway.
The consistent cool weather has cleared up the water and now the perch have fled the creeks and schooled up in the 30-to-40-foot edges. The perch are gathered around structure also, and excellent catches are being made by jiggers around the pilings of the Benedict bridge and the Solomons Bridge in the Patuxent.
Robert Wahrenbock with 9-pound rockfish from mouth of the Patuxent.
The rockfish are in the Potomac in big schools on the Maryland side in the mouth of the Wicomico from Cobb Island to St. Clements Island and at Ragged Point. They are always moving and will be on one side of the river or the other on any given day. A tried-and-true technique is to get out in the river and cruise around until flocks of gulls show the location of the fish. You can troll around the fish or cast to them using bucktails, jigs, and swimming plugs. These fish are 20" to 30" with the majority about 22" to 24". The Patuxent is the same with fish scattered from Benedict to Cedar Point.
Plenty of rock hitting cast lures in the shallows of Point Lookout.
A big advantage is the Potomac's allowance of two a day, minimum 20". Maryland waters limit is one per day at 19-inch minimum.
The fishing is really good now. Let's go get'em.
Gene Wright with rockfish from Point No Point lighthouse.