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Made it out to Slavins at 7AM, right at sunrise. Beautiful morning with air temps right around 70 and some humidity.
High tide was 8:45AM so the plan was to fish the pads. As we made it to the first pad field on the right, the water wasn't as high as I expected, and the hydrilla mats were still everywhere and choked around the pads. I didn't feel like poling into the pads that early so quick change of plans and headed up the creek next to the beach. I was throwing a horny toad and my friend was throwing a frog deep into the grass. First cast I get a follow but no commit. A little farther down, I'm looking at how far out the hydrilla wall was coming and as I'm reeling up the toad, I get whacked about 5 feet from the boat. I wasn't ready at all for that and set the hook too late and it was gone, definitely a decent LMB. No more action in that creek.
Next we headed past the wall and I was hoping there'd be good water in the ponds pad field. When we got there it looked better and had enough water in some sections to troll in. We had about 8 blow ups, but nothing stayed on or were total misses. I noticed that most of our hits were in open water areas where there were deep holes in the hydrilla. Then we go back into the channel and tried to cover more water by throwing the toad and frog from the channel into the pads. No more bites as it was full sun at this point and wind had picked up to about 12 mph. But we did see some big 5lb+ LMB cruising along the channel, so I tie on a chatterbait and throw in front of the boat. I managed to get one fish in the boat and it was this greedy little guy.
Not sure what the pattern is now if I go back out, but I think with water temps in the low 70's, more LMB are cruising around now looking for a meal, rather than holding to cover and waiting for that bite.
I might try and make it out one more time at low tide to see if I can get a popper bite going.
Nice report. Sounds like the Potomac has been really tough this year. I only went out once back in the Spring and just caught a few dinks.
Bummer to see you did not do better. Hopefully, soon...