Fishermen at Deep Creek Lake are seeing water temperatures begin to dip below 50-degrees this week and largemouth and smallmouth bass are beginning to hold to deeper structure such as grass beds and rocky points. Crawfish are “what’s for dinner” so soft plastics and jig imitations are a good choice as well as crankbaits. Yellow perch and walleye are moving freely through the shallows looking to fatten up on small baitfish for the winter.
Trout fishermen are still reaping the rewards of a generous fall stock stocking program in many of the regions stocked waters this week and excellent fishing opportunities in many of the restricted take areas. Ryan Strickler was fishing with his brother in the North Branch when he caught and released this nice 23” brown trout.
Smallmouth bass and walleye are entertaining fishermen this week on the upper Potomac as flows on the river remain rather constant and clear. Tubes and soft plastic jigs are good choices for fishing this time of the year.
Water temperatures have really taken a nose dive in the last two weeks within the two regions lakes, reservoirs and tidal waters. Largemouth bass are beginning to hold to deep hard structure such as sunken wood and rocks and channel edges. There are still crawfish trying to retreat from the shallower areas and the loss of cover there to deeper waters across open bottom; so any kind of lure that resembles a crawfish and is retrieved slowly along the bottom is a good choice.
Fishermen looking for a little bit different kind of action have been enjoying the bounty of the generous fall trout stocking program in selected ponds and lakes. Steve Fulks sent in this picture of a limit of rainbow trout that he caught using Powerbait in Hutchin’s Pond in Calvert County recently.
The tidal rivers within the regions such as the Potomac are seeing grass rapidly disappear as water temperatures drop. Largemouth bass are holding to isolated clumps wherever they can find them but are also moving to channel edges, deeper sunken wood, bridge piers and rocks. Tubes and slow rolling spinnerbaits that are slowly retrieved near cover are good methods to employ at this time. Fishermen who love their blue catfish in the tidal Potomac are experiencing good fishing this week and many are getting out as much as possible before the fishing slows down with colder weather and icy waters.
As water temperatures drop in the many lakes and ponds within the eastern region fishermen will find shrinking grass beds and emergent vegetation wilting and dying back from heavy frosts more of a factor in fishing for largemouth bass and chain pickerel. The largemouth bass will be seeking deeper cover such as tree logs and stumps. Slowly retrieving deep diving crankbaits or slow rolling spinnerbaits and working soft plastics close to the bottom near cover can often entice a strike from largemouth bass holding there. Chain pickerel love colder water and now that many thick grass beds have retreated due to cold water die back they will be roaming more open waters and will strike a variety of lures including spinners and spoons.
Largemouth bass in the tidal rivers will start to hold near creek ledges and channel drop-offs in the rivers as well as deep sunken wood or other deep structure. Deep diving crankbaits, grubs and other soft plastics are all good choices to slowly work deep cover.
Fishing for channel catfish in many of the tidal rivers is very good this week as cooler water temperatures have the catfish on the move and feeding. The Elk, Chester, Choptank and Nanticoke Rivers are all good places to fish for channel catfish this week.
Click here to view recent bay satellite images at mddnr.chesapeakebay.net/NASAimagery/EyesInTheSky.cfm
Reservoir Bathymetry information:
The Maryland Geological
Survey has bathymetry maps on their website:
Links to freshwater flows:
Latest real time stream flow for
Gunpowder Falls near Parkton.
Latest real time stream flow for
Gunpowder Falls At Glencoe.