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FISHING REPORT By Charlie Taylor
POTOMAC RIVER TIDES TWILIGHT
DAY DATE HIGH LOW HIGH LOW A.M. P.M.
Wednesday 11/18 0736 1351 1939 0213 0626 1722
Thursday 11/19 0820 1429 2019 0254 0627 1722
Friday 11/20 0905 1508 2101 0332 0628 1721
Saturday 11/21 0952 1550 2145 0409 0629 1721
Sunday 11/22 1040 1635 2233 0445 0630 1720
Monday 11/23 1131 1724 2329 0523 0631 1720
Tuesday 11/24 1222 1817 - - - 0603 0632 1719
Wednesday 11/25 1313 1913 0030 0647 0633 1719
Thursday 11/26 1400 2013 0131 0733 0634 1719
Friday 11/27 1444 2115 0227 0820 0635 1718
Saturday 11/28 1525 2215 0318 0910 0636 1718
Sunday 11/29 1606 2311 0405 1000 0637 1718
POTOMAC RIVER - D.C. - Bass are located in deeper water adjacent to structure.
Dropoffs are the better choices, particularly when submerged wood cover
exists. Small plastic grubs, jig 'n pig and small crankbaits are the better
choices for lures. Live bait is working well for those who are using it.
Choose a bank that drops into 10-20 feet of water and fish the baits down the
drop for best results. When using live bait, put one bait up on the shallow
portion of the bank while fishing the deeper water with a second bait. This
will enable you to catch the fish that come up into the shallows to feed.
Crappie are schooled and biting well on live minnows in Washington Channel,
around the boat docks and submerged pilings. The Spoils, Fletchers Cove and
Belle Haven Cove are other good locations for crappie. Catfish are available
on cut and live bait throughout the river channel and at the outflow from the
Alexandria Power Plant. Yellow perch are active around Roosevelt Island,
taking small minnows, plastic grubs and horsehead jigs. At least one angler is
catching keeper sized walleye above Fletcher's Boathouse. Walleye are normally
on the point at East Potomac Park this time of year.
POTOMAC RIVER - BELOW WOODROW WILSON BRIDGE - Bass are holding in deeper water
throughout the river. Main river and creek channel dropoffs with cover
adjacent are the better choices. Jig 'n pig, plastic grubs, Shakey Heads and
spinnerbaits tipped with pork frog, work best in the deeper water, while small
crankbaits, retrieved very slowly, will take the fish in the shallows. Live
bait is working better than artificials throughout the river system. Crappie
are biting well in some of the creeks, notably Aquia and Mattawoman. Small
minnows are the ticket. Stripers are biting around the channel markers in the
river, from Potomac Creek to Colonial Beach. The most successful baits are
Sassy Shads, bucktails, 3/4 oz. Rat-L-Traps, trolled Manns 30+ lures and
OCCOQUAN RIVER - Crankbaits, worked along the rock wall, are taking a few bass
in this river. Most of the bass, however, are being caught in deeper water, on
dropoffs. Better baits include live minnows, plastic worms and grubs, Shakey
Heads, jig 'n pig and Silver Buddies. Crankbaits that root the bottom in 15
feet or more of water will occasionally turn a good fish or two. The rock wall
along the North shore, rocky points and submerged pilings are some of the
better areas to fish. Crappie and bluegill are taking small minnows around the
boat docks, where the occasional good bass will also hit. Catfish are being
caught by crappie fishermen on minnows, but there are few anglers fishing for
them. Stripers showed up in the back end of the river on Sunday. Sassy Shads,
Rat-L-Traps and minnow shaped lures are taking the fish.
OCCOQUAN RESERVOIR - Most anglers are doing quite well on this lake, as they
fish large spinnerbaits, jig 'n pig and live bait around the blowdowns on
steeply dropping banks. Main lake points and rock walls are also giving up
some good bass.
BURKE LAKE - Action is slow, but skilled anglers are taking a few bass and
lots of panfish. Nightcrawlers and minnows are taking the panfish, while bass
anglers are using live bait, plastic worms and grubs, and jig 'n pig baits.
POTOMAC RIVER - GREAT FALLS - The normal influx of walleye are here. Lots of
walleye are being caught by bank fishing regulars. Sizes range up to 6+
pounds. Better baits include twister tail grubs, redside minnows and small
spinners and crankbaits.
POTOMAC RIVER - UPPER - Smallmouth action is slow and primarily limited to the
deeper holes in the river. Fish jumbo minnows in the holes for the larger
fish. Hair jigs with pork frogs attached will also tempt the fish, if they are
fished very slowly in the deeper water. Crappie are being taken at the mouth
of Goose Creek and Broad Run. The mouth of the Dickerson Power Plant discharge
canal is producing some smallmouth bass and channel catfish on live minnows
and plastic grubs. Occasional tiger muskies are mixed in the catches. Don't
neglect topwater poppers. They will occasionally outfish any other bait.
RAPPAHANNOCK RIVER - Live minnows are taking good numbers of smallmouth bass
above the city. Tidal stretches are producing crappie action around downed
brush. Live minnows and tiny jigs are the key. Bass action is slow, but some
fish are being taken from the shoreline structure, particularly where the
channel hugs the bank. Jig 'n pig, plastic grubs and shad imitating crankbaits
are the better choice of baits. Catfish, many of them large, are still taking
strips of cut shad or herring, fished on the bottom, in outside bends of the
main river channel.
MATTAPONI/PAMUNKEY RIVERS - Few anglers were out, but those who did fish are
reporting yellow perch, crappie, a few pickerel and some catfish. Small
stripers are also available on main river points, where the tide is running
strong. Bucktails, Sassy Shads and large Rat-L-Traps are the most productive
SHENANDOAH RIVER - Most anglers are hunting and no reports are available.
LAKE ANNA - Striper fishing is good at this time. The stripers are working the
shad schools on top in the early morning and late evening, and marauding the
schools in the depths during the day. Topwater plugs are taking good numbers
of 8-10 pounders off the rocks at Dike #3 at daybreak. The roaming schools are
also present from Stubbs Bridge to Terry's Run. After the fish quit working
the surface, Cordell Redfins and Sassy Shads are the better baits. Largemouth
bass are being found at all depths and the better baits are jig 'n pig,
Hopkins Spoons and live minnows. Crappie fishing is good under the bridges,
around brushpiles, under boat docks and suspended over creek channels. Tiny
Hopkins spoons, tiny jigs and live minnows are the choice for baits.
BACK BAY - Good fishing for white perch, small bass and a few catfish in the
creeks. Minnows and red wigglers have been the more successful baits. Striper
fishing has been good on the seaside, along with some large bluefish.
SUFFOLK LAKES - Crappie, yellow perch and stripers, 7-10 pounds, are the fare
at Western Branch. Lake Prince is reporting stripers and some citation yellow
perch, along with a few crappie, pickerel and bass. Whitehurst and Smith are
reporting small white perch, small bass, small catfish and a few walleye.
JAMES RIVER - Smallmouth bass are the talk on this body of water. Lots of big
smallmouth are being taken in the city of Richmond. Mad toms, live minnows and
crayfish are taking the fish. Below the city, lots of smallmouth, largemouth
and crappie are being caught on minnows, fished along the dropoffs and
brushpiles throughout the river. Catfishing is good to excellent, with the
better action being on cut bait in the outside bends of the tidal river,
particularly in the warm water around Dutch Gap Power Plant.
LAKE CHESDIN - Crappie fishing is excellent, with lots of good fish available.
Bass fishing is running hot and cold. Best results are coming from small
crankbaits, jig 'n pig, live minnows and plastic grubs. Good numbers of
stripers, to 14 pounds are also being caught.
CHICKAHOMINY RIVER - Lots of anglers fishing the river are taking striped
bass, catfish and crappie. Most of the bass are being caught on live minnows,
but some bass are being caught on small crankbaits in shallow water. Best luck
seems to be at the mouths of the feeder creeks on the outgoing tides. Bottom
fishing jumbo minnows in the main river channel is also producing good sized
channel and blue catfish. Yellow perch are feeding heavily, with some citation
perch being taken. Anglers fishing around the dam are taking nice coolers of
crappie to 1 1/2 pounds and scattered catches of striped bass.
CHICKAHOMINY LAKE - Chain pickerel are very active and taking jumbo minnows.
Crappie are schooled up tight and may be caught on small minnows, while
largemouth bass fishing is slow.
LITTLE CREEK RESERVOIR - The water level has come up 8 inches this past week
and the marina has started Winter Hours: Weekends Only, 7 a.m.-5 p.m. Pickerel
and bass are the prime catch here, with pickerel topping the list. Lots of
pickerel are taking white spinnerbaits and live minnows, fished in the lily
pad edges. A few large bass are also taken.
LAKE GASTON - Crappie are stacked around the boat docks and submerged
brushpiles in 14-16 feet of water. Largemouth bass are hitting jig 'n pig
baits and slow-rolled spinnerbaits. Stripers are holding around the bridges,
with the better action in Pea Hill Creek and at the mouth of Songbird and
Lizard Creeks. Trolled Redfins and Rebels are taking the fish. Stripers are
also being caught below the dam.
BUGGS ISLAND LAKE - Bass fishing is good throughout the lake, with the bass
holding in pockets and coves, and bluff banks. Rat-L-Traps, ripped through the
pockets and coves, are producing 2-5 pound largemouths. Stripers are being
caught while trolling with bucktails and live shad around the Clarksville
BRIERY CREEK AND SANDY RIVER RESERVOIRS - Crappie and pickerel are the fare at
Briery Creek, while anglers at Sandy River are finding bream, crappie,
pickerel and catfish. Bass action is slow at both lakes.
SMITH MOUNTAIN LAKE - Lots of topwater action available as stripers and bass
are busting schools of shad on top. The activity begins before daylight and
continues at intervals throughout the day, with dawn and dusk being the more
dependable times. Most of the stripers are in the 10-12 pound range, with bass
to over five pounds also being caught. Stripers are also taking live shad,
trolled slowly behind boats. A few large fish, up to 20 pounds, are also being
caught but these are being caught by the locals who are fishing almost non-
stop this time of year. Walleye and largemouth bass are taking live shad,
fished on the bottom along the main lake points.
LEESVILLE RESERVOIR - No report available this week.
PHILPOTT LAKE - Lots of bass, to six pounds, are being caught on live
crayfish and live minnows. Crappie fishing is fair to excellent at Union
Bridge and Twin Ridges. Trout fishing is good when the water flow through the
generators is stopped. Anglers fishing the Smith River are reporting good
catches of nice sized trout.
CLAYTOR LAKE - Anglers are catching some smallmouth bass. Largemouth bass, to
six pounds, are also showing in the creels. Stripers are running to 20 pounds.
Live bait is the most successful bait.
SOUTH HOLSTON RESERVOIR - Very little action, with only a few crappie and
smallmouth being caught.
LAKE MOOMAW - The reports show that a few trout, crappie, yellow perch and
bass being caught. Few anglers are out, as most have opted for hunting.
TROUT STREAMS - Good catches of trout for anglers using nymphs, streamers, and
small spinners in the Tye River. The South Fork of the Holston River in Smyth
County is also providing anglers with nice catches. Rainbow trout are hitting
nymphs fished just under the surface at Silver Lake in Rockingham County.
Another good spot for trout fishermen is the Tomahawk Pond in Shenandoah
SALTWATER - The ocean run stripers have arrived in the Bay. There are
currently large schools feeding around Windmill Point at the mouth of the
Rappahannock, around buoy 59A. Trolling is the proper method and the fish are
running 20-40+ pounds. Other typical late fall spots are producing fish in the
5-9 lb. class when the ebb tide is running hard.