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Fishing report

THE BALTIMORE SUN

The locations

Piney Run: The park will be open for fishing until midnight, says Loren Lustig at the park office. Largemouth bass are holding on the deep and shallow edges of hydrilla beds and in open pockets where hydrilla growth is sparse. Best baits are 4- and 5-inch Yamamoto worms, Stick-O worms and spinnerbaits. Although the reservoir is down about 12 feet, launching is not a problem. Boating anglers are catching catfish in the 2-5 pound range and an occasional striped bass using chicken livers or cutbait.

Prettyboy Reservoir: The level is down 43 feet and only folks willing to walk the shore are fishing now. Stake out the points to catch bass on crayfish or shiners or white perch on bobbers.

Loch Raven Reservoir: Bass still hang on the edges of the grass beds; live minnows are best bait. Trolling nightcrawlers on a spinner hook will get you yellow and white perch. The reservoir is down 8.1 feet.

Liberty Reservoir: Anglers are catching crappies from the Nicodemus Bridge with mini-mites and small fathead minnows, says Doug Geis at Old Reisterstown Bait and Tackle. Hit the points for white perch and stripers running 6-11 pounds. The perch are taking chicken liver and nightcrawlers and the stripers are enticed by extra large shiners. The reservoir is down 28.5 feet.

Susquehanna River: In the Northeast River, anglers are catching smallies in the grass edges, at the VA hospital and in the coves on the west bank on spinnerbaits, says guide Dave Covell. The bridge foundations in the river main stem and rocky ledges are producing smallies approaching 4 pounds on tubes. Fishermen's Park below the Conowingo Dam remains closed because of the national security alert. Anglers have reported decent striper action at Port Deposit and from the Sassafras River to the Susquehanna Flats. Bass Assassins are best bait.

Gunpowder River: Water was muddy and the temperature during the last week shot up 4 degrees to 70 at Falls Road. Flow is strong, so a wading stick is recommended. Try hoppers, sizes 10 and 12, says Theaux LeGardeur at Backwater Angler in Monkton.

Middle River: The Maryland B.A.S.S. Federation held a tournament out of Dundee Creek last weekend. On Saturday, 90 anglers brought in 251 bass, with the largest 5 pounds, 14 ounces. The second day, 88 anglers weighed in 245 bass, with the biggest fish 4-4. Work the docks with topwaters in morning and evening and Yamamoto Senkos and 6-7-inch Berkeley worms, says Matt Garick at The Fishin' Shop on Pulaski Highway. Gunpowder River grass is producing lots of largemouths on the same patterns. Bush River anglers are catching monster cats on peelers and nightcrawlers.

Patapsco River: Target pools and feel with your feet for cool underwater springs to find where fish are hiding. Hank Holland at The Fisherman's Edge in Catonsville suggests poppers with a beadhead nymph on a dropper line under the popper for smallmouth bass and panfish. We're still hearing of small red drum being caught on cut bait and bloodworms in the tributaries.

Triadelphia and Rocky Gorge reservoirs: If you have a boat to launch, avoid Triadelphia and use the ramps at Rocky Gorge. Hector Padilla, the WSSC officer at Brighton Dam, reports an 11-pound, 30 1/4 -inch channel cat was caught at Triadelphia on a grub last Monday. Anglers have been catching plenty of largemouth and smallmouth bass and white perch this week.

Chesapeake Bay: The upper bay has the best striper action right now, with fish on the move everywhere. Look for breaking fish and working birds. Spot fishing was excellent on The Diamonds at the mouth of the Choptank, says Capt. Jim Brincefield. Standard bottom rigs with bloodworms, cut spot and razor clams did the trick. He also reports some rock and blues action at The Gooses fishing cut bunker, cut spot and razor clams. Love Point had plenty of sub-legal rockfish with some keepers and blues thrown in. Chumming for keeper striped bass has been best on the Western Shore lumps between Belvidere Shoal, Bodkin Point, and the mouth of the Magothy River in 13 to 14 feet of water. Live-lining spot has been the ticket at the Gas Docks. Trolling or jigging on breaking bluefish and striped bass has been productive in the afternoons from Cedar Point south to Point Lookout. Flounder action has been excellent this week for boaters at Point Lookout State Park.

Ocean City: Anglers are reporting some fine early fall action, says Sue Foster of Oyster Bay Tackle. There's been a good tautog bite from the U.S. 50 bridge, Oceanic Pier, the inlet, and from the bulkheads and the ends of Second through Sixth streets. Green crabs and sand crabs are best baits. The bridge also has been a good location for flounder and croaker. After eons of sluggish fishing, surf anglers finally ran into some good luck, especially at Assateague, where sand bar sharks and blues were biting. Try fresh finger mullet cut into chunks. Try trout fishing in the Ocean City Inlet, with bucktails, spec rigs and wild-eyed shads doing the most damage. John Slike of Towson caught a state-record Atlantic spadefish last Sunday aboard the headboat Judith M out of Bahia Marina. The fish weighed 7 pounds, 14 ounces and measured 21 inches with a girth of 20 inches. Slike's fish exceeded the old record set in 2000 by 1.2 ounces. Slike was fishing at the African Queen wreck using 30-pound test line with squid for bait.

Potomac River: Thick grass has made the upper river slow going, and runoff upstream has added to that. Fish the grass on the Virginia side just above White's Ferry with green pumpkin tubes for nice-sized bass, says guide Ken Penrod of Life Outdoors Unlimited. The tidal river is a tad churned up. Blue Plains is crowded but productive. Also, the main river grass bed between Blue Plains and the bridge is a good bass spot; fish 3/8 -ounce spinnerbaits.

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