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FISHING REPORT By Charlie Taylor
Potomac River Tide Information Twilight
High Point, Occoquan River Hours
Day Date High Low High Low A.M. P.M.
Wednesday 9/02 0612 1252 1841 0000 0612 2004
Thursday 9/03 0653 1329 1918 0049 0613 2003
Friday 9/04 0730 1403 1949 0135 0614 2001
Saturday 9/05 0803 1435 2015 0217 0615 2000
Sunday 9/06 0833 1506 2040 0258 0616 1958
Monday 9/07 0903 1538 2109 0337 0617 1957
Tuesday 9/08 0937 1613 2146 0417 0618 1955
Wednesday 9/09 1017 1651 2228 0500 0619 1953
Thursday 9/10 1103 1736 2318 0547 0619 1942
Friday 9/11 1158 1828 - - - 0643 0620 1940
Saturday 9/12 1305 1930 0015 0749 0621 1948
Sunday 9/13 1424 2044 0123 0900 0622 1947
POTOMAC RIVER - D.C. - Crappie are beginning to school around the Fletcher's
Cove area with some catches made on small minnows. Catfish are still biting
well on nightcrawlers and clam snouts. Smallmouth bass are taking small
crankbaits, live crayfish and spinnerbaits along the banks, above Fletcher's.
The Virginia shoreline is holding good largemouth bass all the way to National
Airport. Rattling crankbaits are the preferred baits. Main river bridge
pilings are giving up some good fish to patient anglers fishing soft plastic
baits and deep diving crankbaits. Washington Channel sea wall is holding
crappie schools and some bass. Plastic baits, fished slow, are taking the
bass. The cover around Blue Plains and the Woodrow Wilson Bridge are also
producing good bass on topwater baits and plastic worms.
POTOMAC RIVER - BELOW WOODROW WILSON BRIDGE - Bass are holding in the main
river grass beds below Piscataway Creek. Better choice of baits are buzzbaits,
frogs, soft jerk baits, spinnerbaits, plastic worms and jig 'n pig. In the
backs of the creeks, crankbaits and plastic worms are producing well around
submerged wood. Plastic worms, tossed into spatterdock fields, are taking lots
of largemouth bass in the creeks. Zoom Horny Toads are taking fish from thick
matted grass beds. Spinnerbaits and Storm Chug Bugs are taking fish from the
marsh grass banks. Crappie are schooling up tight and biting well on small,
live minnows. Catfish are taking cut bait, live minnows, clam snouts and
OCCOQUAN RIVER - Bass have turned on with the coming of the cooler nights.
Lots of bass are being taken on crankbaits around submerged cover. Crappie are
schooling and taking small minnows. Catfish continue to bite well on clam
snouts, nightcrawlers and cut bait. Some stripers are available in the back of
the river on Sassy Shads, bucktails and large minnow imitating lures.
OCCOQUAN RESERVOIR - Bass are hitting crankbaits, plastic worms and jig 'n pig
baits, fished on main lake points and creek channels. Some fish are also being
taken from the rock walls on the lower end of the lake. Catfish are biting
well on clam snouts, while crappie are schooled and taking live minnows and
tiny jigs, around submerged cover.
BURKE LAKE - Bass beginning to feed actively. Some big fish taking small
crankbaits and plastic worms. Crappie are schooled up and taking live minnows
and tiny jigs.
POTOMAC RIVER - UPPER - Smallmouth action is fair to good, with a few decent
sized fish. Most of the fish are being caught on plastic worms or grubs and
small spinnerbaits. Good action on topwater baits, around and over the flooded
shoreline grassbeds. Catfish are still taking cut bait, nightcrawlers and live
minnows. Crappie beginning to school up around the creek mouths.
RAPPAHANNOCK RIVER - Smallmouth action is good above the city on minnows,
crayfish and Baby Chug Bugs. In the tidal sections, largemouth bass are
available above the Route 301 Bridge, taking small crankbaits and plastic
worms around the wood cover in the main river. Some bass are also available at
the tide line around the city. Large catfish, to 30 pounds, are still taking
cut baits in the main channel bends below the city.
SHENANDOAH RIVER - This river is in excellent shape for smallmouth anglers.
Most fish are taken on live minnows, madtoms and crayfish, but nice fish are
also being taken on plastic worms, grubs, spinnerbaits, Tiny Torpedos and
small crankbaits. Sunfish and catfish are biting well.
MATTAPONI/PAMUNKEY RIVERS - Catfish action is excellent. Minnows and
nightcrawlers are producing bream, bass, bowfin, crappie, walleye, pickerel
and stripers in the upper ends of both rivers. Croaker are being taken from
mid river to the mouth.
LAKE ANNA - Bass action is slow to fair. The bass are on the move with the
cooler temperatures. Best action from dawn to about 10 a.m. is near shallow
flats. Topwater lures are the best choice, with crankbaits and plastic worms
also producing. Rocky points are also producing bass on plastic worms and jig
'n pig. Crappie are schooled up around the bridge pilings, where live minnows
and tiny jigs are taking good stringers. Stripers are active around Dike
Three, the Splits, Jetts Island, Rose Valley and Stubbs Bridge. Some topwater
action for stripers is available in the mouths of Sturgeon and Contrary
Creeks, early and late in the day.
JAMES RIVER - Bass are tough to find in the tidal creeks. Best action is on
plastic worms, small crankbaits and spinnerbaits in the back ends of creeks
and the headwaters of the river. The gravel pits are also producing good
numbers of bass and crappie. Above the city, smallmouth bass action is good.
Best lure choices are plastic grubs, small crankbaits and small topwater
lures. Catfish to 55 pounds are biting well throughout the tidal sections.
LAKE CHESDIN - Crappie are biting well, along with bass in the 3-4 pound
class. Spinnerbaits are the better bait for bass, while crappie are taking
small minnows. Catfish action is excellent, with a number of large fish being
CHICKAHOMINY RIVER - Fair fishing for bass, with crankbaits, minnows, plastic
worms and buzzbaits taking most of the fish. Better action is to be had by
fishing back ends of creeks and lily pad fields in the upper reaches of the
river. Most of the fish are small, but some good fish are being caught. Bream
are also being taken in large numbers. Catfish action is excellent on turtle
livers and peeler crab. Lots of crappie are starting to show on submerged
brush. Big blue catfish are available on cut eel baits.
CHICKAHOMINY LAKE - Bass catches are good, with fish to six pounds being
caught. Catfish, bream, pickerel and grindle are also showing in the catches.
Catfish are taking shrimp, peeler crab and clam snouts. Pickerel and bass are
taking jumbo minnows, plastic worms, spinnerbaits and crankbaits, while bream
anglers are taking most of the fish on red wigglers and flyrod poppers.
LITTLE CREEK RESERVOIR - Some good sized bass and pickerel are mixed in the
creels, along with smaller bass and bream. Topwater and plastic lures are the
best baits for bass, while bream are taking red wigglers, crickets and flyrod
poppers. Stripers are being caught on live herring.
BACK BAY - Small bass, nice bluegill, small crappie and large catfish are
being caught in the upper ends of Hellespoint and West Neck Creeks. The
Sandbridge area is producing catfish to nine pounds, flounder and a few perch.
Crappie and white perch are being caught on small minnows throughout the bay.
SUFFOLK LAKES - Fishing is fair in all the lakes. Shellcrackers are taking red
wigglers and crickets in 9-10 feet of water. Bass are taking spinnerbaits,
plastic worms and crankbaits. Striper action is good on jumbo minnows in
Western Branch and Prince. Bream and gar are biting well in Lake Prince, while
crappie are biting well on live minnows. Lake Whitehurst reports excellent
action for catfish, bream and white perch. A few walleye are being landed on
LAKE GASTON - Largemouth bass are hitting red plastic worms and clear
crankbaits, around boat docks. Topwater baits are accounting from lots of bass
from the uplake grassbeds. Zoom Horny Toads are the better choice for matted
grass, while Baby Chug Bugs and Pop Rs take lots of fish in the milfoil beds.
Crappie are taking live minnows and red and white jigs. Night fishing for
catfish is excellent with almost any kind of bait. Trolling white bucktails
and Cordell Redfins, is the preferred method for catching striped bass. White
perch are taking crappie jigs dropped from Pop R's, on points.
BUGGS ISLAND LAKE - Bass are schooled up on structure and can be consistently
caught on old road beds and points in 4-10 feet of water. Fish are
aggressively hitting lures bumped on structure. Best lures are plastic worms
and grubs in light colors, fished on Carolina rigs. Striped bass are being
caught by trolling with bucktails, Cordell Red Fins and live shad from buoy 5
through buoy 8. Crappie fishing is good all over the lake, around brushpiles
and bridge pilings. The fish are located at the 10 foot level. The mouths of
Grassy and Eastland Creeks are showing good catches of white bass. The fish
are being caught, jigging Little Georges just off the bottom, in 20 feet of
BRIERY CREEK & SANDY RIVER RESERVOIRS - Fishing is reported as slow, with
small bass, bluegills, crappie and a few catfish being caught.
SMITH MOUNTAIN LAKE - Bass action is picking up, with most of the fish being
caught in 5-8 feet of water, on crankbaits and topwater lures. Some bass are
being caught around boat docks in the Craddock Creek section. Main lake points
in the Roanoke arm are also producing some bass on plastic worms and jig 'n
pig baits. Striper action is excellent in the lower end of the lake on trolled
Red Eye Spoons and live shad. The fish are running 8-11 pounds.
LEESVILLE RESERVOIR - Live minnows and crankbaits are the better choices for
baits to catch largemouth and white bass. Most of the fish are schooled and
are actively feeding. Crappie are taking medium minnows. Stripers, 7-12
pounds, are being taken trolling bucktails and Cordell Redfins.
LAKE MOOMAW - Trout fishing is at a standstill, with only a few 2-3 pound fish
being caught. Most of the action on the lake centers on bass, yellow perch and
PHILPOTT LAKE - Bass and crappie fishing is fair, with live minnows being the
bait of choice. Trout fishing has just about stopped, while catfishing is
good. Trout fishing in the Smith River is good for small fish.
NEW RIVER - Lots of smallmouth bass are being caught early and late in the
day, in the deeper holes. Best lures are live bait and soft plastic lures in
brown and chartreuse colors. Catfishing is fair.
SOUTH HOLSTON RESERVOIR - Smallmouth bass are biting well on jig 'n pig,
Silver Buddies, crankbaits and live minnows, fished off points in 10-12 feet
of water. Catfish are taking nightcrawlers. Crappie are schooling and taking
CLAYTOR LAKE - White bass are starting to appear in Peak Creek and some
crappie are being caught. Channel catfish are biting well, and stripers are
starting to bust the surface, early and late in the day. Some small bass are
TROUT STREAMS - Fair action should be anticipated with the advent of the brook
and brown trout spawn. Casters should have good success on small spinners and
spoons, while flyrodders should make good catches on streamers and nymphs in
sizes 8-10 on larger streams and rivers.
S A L T W A T E R
CHINCOTEAGUE - Large flounder are moving from the inside creeks down to the
mouth of the inlet, in the vicinity of Buoy 20. Catches in this area also
include good numbers of spot, blowfish and sea bass. Some croaker and small
sharks are being caught in the vicinity of the 2TL Buoy. Grey trout, to seven
pounds, are being taken inside the inlet and off Fishing Point. Taylor blues,
spot and a few sea mullet are being caught in the surf. Offshore catches
consist mainly of yellowfin tuna, false albacore and dolphin, along with a few
WACHAPREAGUE - Yellowfin tuna and dolphin are being caught at the 20 Fathom
Finger, while billfish are being caught in Norfolk Canyon. Inside the inlet,
flounder to five pounds are taken from the mouth of the inlet and the deep
channel in front of the Old Coast Guard Station. Bottom fishermen are also
finding a mix of sea mullet, croaker, spot, pigfish and blowfish.
ONANCOCK - Excellent bottom fishing for spot. Sea mullet, pigfish, blowfish,
porgy and sea bass are mixed in with the spot. Croaker action has tailed off,
but those caught are larger fish. Trout are showing in the Beach Rock area.
Flounder are being taken by drifting the channel edges with fresh cut spot for
bait. Several red drum have been caught around the islands outside Onancock.
Peeler crab baits are responsible for some speckled trout.
QUINBY - Good catches of 1-3 pound trout on squid strips. Best action has been
at the Gap, Rebel Island and Eggen Marsh. Bottom anglers are catching sea
mullet, sea bass and spot. Flounder fishing has improved, with many limits
being reported. Offshore trollers report yellowfin tuna, dolphin and false
CAPE CHARLES - Good red drum action is reported along the channel edge from
the old C-10 buoy to Pungoteague Creek. Best catches are coming from late
afternoon to just after dark on fresh cut mullet and bunker. Flounder action
remains excellent, with good catches made from the old C-10 Buoy to the Cement
Ships. Large flounder are also taken between the High Rise and the Fourth
Island of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. Bottom fishermen are finding a
mixture of spot, croaker, blowfish, sea mullet, taylor blues, trout and
pigfish. Speckled trout action remains iffy in the bayside creeks.
LOWER CHESAPEAKE BAY AREA - Flounder, croaker and spot are hitting at the
Small Boat Channel, located just south of the First Island of the Chesapeake
Bay Bridge Tunnel. Spot catches are excellent along Chicks Beach. Taylor blues
to three pounds are available around the Fourth Island. Lots of cobia are
still on the CBBT and nearby ocean buoys. Tautog activity is improving daily.
Spanish mackerel are plentiful along the tunnel crossing. King mackerel, 8-15
pounds, are being taken by trollers from the CB Buoy line out to the Tower
Reef. Cobia are taking white bucktails trimmed with pork rind on the CB Buoys.
The Fingers are loaded with chicken dolphin and occasional white marlin. Good
catches of croaker, along with some flounder, are coming from the Back River
Reef. Serious flounder fishermen are running across the Bay to the Cell.
Excellent bottom fishing for "yellow-bellied" spot is available at Twin
Stakes, along with a few decent croaker. Drifted cut bait is responsible for
fair numbers of flounder just outside Egg Island Bar. Large sea mullet and
cow-nosed rays are available at the south end of Smith Island. Spot are
schooling with the cooler weather, but croaker catches are dwindling. Large
spot and croaker are hitting off Cheatham Annex at the "Lumps" and at the
mouth of Sarah's Creek. Speckled trout activity continues to improve inside
Mobjack Bay, near the mouth of the North and Ware Rivers.
MIDDLE CHESAPEAKE BAY AREA - Excellent numbers of large spot are available at
Blackberry Hang and at the mouth of Dividing and Indian Creeks. Sea mullet and
trout are found behind Tangier Island. Spanish mackerel are still available
along the eastern side of the Shipping Channel from buoy 62 south. Bluefish,
2-4 pounds, are mixed with the mackerel. The Lumps, located east of Smith
Point Light, in 30 feet of water, and Blackberry Hang are top locations for
excellent bottom fishing. Catches include spot, croaker, sea mullet, sea bass
and flounder. Bluefish are becoming more active in the Point Lookout area and
on the Southwest Middle Grounds. For every bluefish caught, however, two or
more striped bass jump on the baits. Lots of schooling blues and rockfish are
available for light tackle casting. Excellent bottom fishing is also available
around Gwynn Island, Windmill Point, Cornhouse Bar, Cherry Point and Hole-in-
the-Wall. Plenty of 1 1/2 pound croaker and large spot are being caught at
Bowlers Rock and Morattico.
UPPER CHESAPEAKE BAY AREA - Bluefish, 1-3 pounds, and rockfish, 1-5 pounds,
are the primary fish being caught from the Bay Bridges South to the Gooses and
Parker's Creek. Trolling small spoons and surgical eels appears to be the best
method for taking these fish. Jumbo spot are being taken in large numbers at
the mouth of the Choptank River on bloodworms and peeler crab. White perch
appear to have moved in larger numbers into the river systems of both shores.
Perch may still be found on the lumps and oyster bars in the main stem of the
bay, but the mouths of the various rivers in the upper bay appear to be more
productive. Bloodworms or grass shrimp are the best bait.
OCEAN CITY - Flounder are taking minnows, frozen shiners and squid in the back
bays. Surf anglers are taking bluefish to three pounds and kingfish on cut
bait. Bottom anglers are catching croaker, spike trout and sea bass, drifting
squid over Fenwick Shoals. Offshore, dolphin and yellowfin tuna can still be
taken at the Canyons and the Hot Dog Lump. Sea bass and tautog are being
caught from the offshore wrecks.
VIRGINIA BEACH - Offshore catches this past week consisted of white and blue
marlin, dolphin, yellowfin tuna, cobia and amberjack. Inshore boats are
finding Spanish mackerel, amberjack, false albacore and some bluefish at the
Tower Reef. Large numbers of porpoises and pilot whales were moving through
the offshore grounds, possibly indicating an abundance of bait. Headboats are
returning with good catches of sea bass. Inside the inlet, a few speckled
trout and flounder are being caught. Surf anglers are taking spot on
LYNNHAVEN - Good runs of spot and croaker, along with a few flounder and sea
VIRGINIA BEACH - Excellent fishing for 1-2 pound croaker and big spot.
SANDBRIDGE - Lots of big spot, with a few Spanish mackerel for casters in the
OUTER BANKS, N.C. - Schools of spot are available all along the beach, with
some croaker, puppy drum and taylor blues mixed in. Some Spanish mackerel and
speckled trout are also caught form the piers. Grey trout are being caught
along the both sides of the Oregon Inlet Bridge and several red drum have been
caught by surf anglers at the Inlet. Good numbers of flounder are caught along
Davis Channel. Inshore anglers are finding plenty of Spanish mackerel and
bluefish, while offshore, some of the best billfish action of the season is
available. Dolphin are also plentiful. Best action is 37 miles due east of the
inlet. Yellowfin and bigeye tuna have also returned to the offshore grounds.