P9220001A wise fisherman once said, “If you don’t like the weather, stick around, it’ll change.”   Unfortunately, it also changes even when you LIKE it.  Gone are those dreary, rainy, unsettled afternoons that brought us such good fishing last week. Temperatures have climbed back into the 80s and prevailing winds have shifted back around from the south.  That’s more like the typical summer pattern in the Chesapeake.  As a result, the bigger fish have gone back to their usual hazy lazy dog-day ways.   I fished two days this week.  Monday evening looked like the best choice, but I had a commitment to speak at the Broadneck-Magothy MSSA meeting at the American Legion Hall in Arnold.  Since it’s deer season and nice weather, I didn’t expect too many people to show up, but I was surprised with a packed house.  Thanks to everyone who turned out.  I gave a “chalk-talk” about what a typical fishing trip to the Bay Bridge might be like.  Most of my speech was about jigging the pilings, but I finished by advising a shot at top-water fishing in low-light situations.  That’s what it took to get the fish this week.

I fished Tuesday evening with Rich.  The south wind with the evening incoming current made it very hard  to get a jig down to the bottom, even in the shallow water where I’ve been finding the better fish.   We managed several keepers off the pilings, but nothing over 20 inches or so.   We decided to leave the bridge and try something else.  We tied on surface lures and I set Crockett’s Reel on a drift over some underwater rocks.  Although there were no breaking fish or working birds to be seen, a few territorial rockfish decided they didn’t like our annoying spooks invading their turf so they started knocking them around.  We landed several respectable fish with Rich topping things off with a 27 incher on a red-headed Heddon Super-Spook.

I was back at them after work Wednesday evening.  Although I caught two fish in the 18 inch range at the first place I stopped, the big fish were still hiding out.  Since topwater fishing is so much fun, I didn’t wait so long before switching over to Plan B.P9160009 It was a little windier at the topwater spot and the incoming current was stronger than the night before.  There were still a few fish around.  One striper hit my Top Dog spook six times before finally coming tight.  I’ve come to like that plug a lot.  I use the full size one, not the more popular Top Dog Jr.  I especially like the consistent popping noise it makes. That stubborn rockfish stayed after my lure even after it got right up to the boat.  I had to duck down so he wouldn’t see my shadow in the water.  I had another blow-up by an even bigger fish, but he missed the hooks.

Although I expect plenty of little fish in blitzes at various parts of the Upper Bay, it’s going to be tough to catch good fish for a little while now.   Hopefully this weather pattern will change soon and we’ll get some storms blowing through again to stir things up.  Until then, I’ll keep throwing surface lures.  There are worse ways to spend a late September evening!

Posted Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009 at 9:20 pm
Filed Under Category: Fishing Reports
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Responses to “Plan B to the Rescue”

  1. James says:

    Great report! Always nice to have a “plan B”. I begged a fishing bud of mine that lives up that way to go to the “chalk-talk” and take notes… he was not able. I would have driven the 3+ hours, but had to work that night. I’m sure we would have cut the piling jigging learning curve way down. Maybe next time! James

  2. Bob Garvey says:

    Just a short note to thank you for the great presentation at the Magothy MSSA meeting last week.

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