Fishin' with Rick
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Rick, Jr.

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Rick (Rich), Sr.

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Rick (Ricky), III

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In the good 'ol days it was just dad and me. We have the same name but everyone called dad 'Rich' and they called me Ricky. That worked well although I preferred Rick to Ricky. Dad seemed to be Rich all along and that was ok with him. Now things got a little complicated about 12 years ago when another Rick came along. My son is 'Rick' also although we tried calling him 'Ricky' but he didn't like that any more than I do. So the point of all this is that Rick could be just about anyone, but when it comes to fishin' Rick means me and the other two Ricks. Confused?

Rick is a genuine fish'n nut. One of the many benefits of being part of a Ricksom is that our collection of Fishing in Maryland Awards are all in the name -- Richard Holt. "Hmm! I wonder which Rick caught that 5 lb. 2 oz pickerel?"  My dad and I actually have a few of those award citations for which we haven't a clue who actually caught the fish! Must have been me. 8-) My son, Rick, started his collection of Award Citations this summer with a big White Perch he caught. Had it made out to Rick Holt III, sneaky little guy!

Fishin' Log

Most Recent entries are on top:
(go to the bottom for ancient history)

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Date: 12/04/00
Time: 11 am - 4 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Chilly and calm early then chillier and just a little breeze from NE. 
Water Temp/Conditions: Water temp 40 degrees F. Tide level was fairly low and we didn't notice any significant tide movement.
Fish Caught: 8 yellow perch (8 1/4"-10 3/8"), 6 white perch(largest 11 1/4")
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Virgil called this morning and we quickly agreed on a trip on the Magothy up in his neck of the woods. Our plan was to tag a mess of pickerel and maybe visit some new waters in the process. Since we were both just about out of tags our plan involved a clandestine meeting with none other than tag moggel Martin Gary of DNR on a roadside in Pasadena. I met Marty about 10 AM and quietly slipped away in the direction of Virgil's place in Arnold with a nice supply of pickerel tags. It was a beautiful morning.

When we launched at Mill Creek we found the creek completely iced over except for a small section near the mouth of the creek. We motored out through the ice and slipped into Dividing Creek to work some piers. Where's the fish? We got one yellow perch and that was about it. Nothing biting there. Decision time.

We headed up the river, slipped up in Cattail Creek to it's headwaters and worked our way back out. The only action came from some perch about half way out the creek. One of the white perch was a hefty 11 incher. Nice, but where's the pike today?

Maybe a tidal pond would be the ticket. We headed across the river and slipped in a little cove that was protected from the light wind that was beginning to pick up. We were starting to feel the cold. We found a few more perch but not even a hit from a pike.

The sun was getting low and it was really getting chilly as we headed back toward the marina. We slipped back into Dividing Creek on the way in and worked some piers. We found the mother-lode of perch off the end of one pier, but it was late and we were cold. We left with the fish still biting.

That was it for today. If you found the right pier and fished just off the end of it slow and on the bottom you could have a little action from the perch. Nothing else worked for us today. We fished some waters we don't usually fish and beat the skunk, but we still have 150 pickerel tags looking for a home. Next time for sure.

Date: 11/29/00
Time: 9:30 am - 4 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: AM was beautiful, tolerable temps, sunny, and almost calm, late morning the wind picked up and blew steady, clouds stacked up and eventually it was downright blustery.
Water Temp/Conditions: Water temp 44-45 degrees F. Tide levels extremely low. Fished the outgoing tide to start and by the low at 2:30 it was about as low as I've seen it in a while.
Fish Caught: 7 chain pickerel (13 3/8"- 21 3/4"), 6 yellow perch, 5 white perch.

Fished alone today. It was just too nice a morning to pass up and the forecasts don't look good for the next few days. I headed across the river to Forked Creek. I haven't caught a decent fish in there yet this year. Today was no exception. With the low water level the prime cover was all high and dry. I got one perch on the first bar coming in and that was it. The water was a little funky there. Though clear it was a little brownish in color.

One of these days I'll catch something there. Two years ago it was an absolute honey hole. Fished Spriggs Pond next. I concentrated on the deep water piers and managed only one pike and some perch. I gave it an honest effort, but things never broke loose and a lot of prime area was high and dry with the low, low water. I was fishing an outgoing tide.

Not sitting still today, I headed back across the river. The breeze had picked up steady from the S and E. I headed straight across the river to Blackhole. The first pier rounding the island granted me a pike. Encouraged by that fish I worked all the deep water piers with nothing more to show for it but one shredded minnow. Close but not quite.

To escape the wind I went further back in the creek. It was very shallow back there, but the shoreline on the right still had about 3 ft. of water. I pulled a pike and some perch from there, had a quick lunch and bundled up for the motor back to home territory. The wind had really picked up. There were whitecaps on the river. One final glance back at the creek and I saw a mature bald eagle soar across the creek. Now that's cool!

It was a slow, cold, bumpy ride back down river into the teeth of the wind. It took about a half hour to get there. I was glad to make the turn into Sillery Bay. I debated whether to call it a day at this point. It was about 2:30 pm, the tide was dead low and water levels were super low. But being back in home territory I just had to give it a shot.

James Pond seemed like the best prospect. Bad call really. The wind was blowing steady right through the cut. It was super shallow and there was too much wind for a good drift so I opted to anchor. Casting in the shallows dredged up globs of that green algae stuff that signals prime pike/perch waters but what fish will hit a minnow draped in globs of green stuff.

I went to plan B and rigged a couple of lines with bobbers about 27-32" above the jig. I cast upwind and let the bobber drift. In the next hour I pulled 4 pike and several perch from the shallows there using that technique. A little voice in my head said, "Don't forget you have to cook dinner tonight." Oops! Better go. Another fine day on the river.

(Caught one tagged pike today in James Pond. It had been tagged (#0091) back on 11/7/00 and had grown an 1/8 of an inch in that time.)

Date: 11/26/00
Time: 10 am - 4 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: AM was foggy with drizzle and strong S breeze, just before noon the fog cleared and the breezes came from the W.
Water Temp/Conditions: Water temp 41-44 degrees F. Tide levels extremely high. Low was about 12:30 pm but we never noticed the water levels change.
Fish Caught: 7 chain pickerel (18 1/4"- 21 7/8"), 8 yellow perch, one white perch.
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Father and son headed out into a dense fog this morning and set course for Redhouse Cove. We fished the area behind the piers and picked up a couple of perch and one pike which had a tag in it. That fish had been tagged in the same location on 11/4/00 (3 weeks ago.) From there we worked a couple of other areas in the cove and found the fish scattered and few and far between. Water levels were very high.

Once the fog cleared and the sun popped out occasionally it took the chill out of our bones and we decided it was time for a boat ride. We headed back out the creek and slipped into James Pond. Had some nice action in there with pike. We tagged 3 pike and even caught one of them twice! Guess he was real hungry.

We tried working the piers in Cornfield Creek, but only managed a perch or two. With our day almost gone we took a slow troll along the E side of Holland Point with nary a hit. We were both ready to call it a day, but on the way back out along the point we couldn't pass up one particularly fishy looking shoreline and pulled in for a few casts. On the first cast Ricky had a pike follow to the boat. He worked the area over and soon was hooked up with a feisty 20 inch pike.

We ended the day on that positive note and when we rounded Long Point we were hit with the stiff breeze that we'd manage to hide from all day. It was definitely time to head for the dock. Great day on the river.

Ricky, Bryan and I took a drive to the shore and fished for a couple of hours at Wye Mills Community Pond and the spillway. We had a few hits and lost a few minnows in the spillway, but never landed anything. From there we took a drive down to Wye Landing and looked around then on the way back West we stopped at Kent Narrows and roamed around there for a while. Didn't see anyone catching anywhere we went.

Date: 11/18/00
Time: 11 am - 4 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Partly cloudy, 40 degrees, Light W breeze picked up and swung around more to the SW as the day wained.
Water Temp/Conditions: Water temp 49 degrees F. Tide levels extremely low. High about Noon was more 
like a low, low.
Fish Caught: 4 chain pickerel (largest 23 3/8"), two stripers (largest 19"), 10 yellow perch (largest 12 7/8"), a couple white perch.
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Click the pic for some more details on the day.

Date: 11/13/00
Time: Noon - 4:30 pm
Location: Chesapeake Bay out of Breezy Point
Weather: Partly cloudy, very windy out of the S. 
Water Temp/Conditions: Incoming tide and very high water.
Fish Caught: One 16" seatrout

Fished with Virgil Poe this afternoon aboard Lick-ad-Split. We got a late start and once on the water discovered that the wind forecast for the day was WAY off. No sooner had we cleared the inlet than the wind picked up and steadily blew hard all afternoon. We started south into the wind and began setting up a trolling spread. With no rigs already prepared this was a slow process and the wind made boat control a real pain. With only 4 lines out we proceeded for a while, but only long enough to talk ourselves out of trolling for the day and into chasing birds and looking for trout.

Trout fishing wasn't much easier. The wind and tide were working together and we kept adding weight to try to get down to the fish. There were little groups of birds hopping around as small schools of fish came to the surface, but they never stayed up for long. We competed with a half dozen other boats for a shot at the trout under those breaking fish. We were not marking any big concentrations of trout and the wind made it difficult even getting a shot at them before they disappeared. Virgil hooked up with one trout and that was the only fish I saw caught all afternoon.

When we got back in the high tide was up over the docks.

Date: 11/7/00
Time: 10:30 am - 5 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Partly cloudy, 60 degrees. Light breezes. 
Water Temp/Conditions: Water temp 55 degrees F. Tides about a foot above normal. High was 3:30 pm Majority of the action was on the first part of the outgoing tide.
Fish Caught: 11 chain pickerel(13 3/4 - 23"), 9 yellow perch, 10 white perch and one rockfish (19")
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See the image above for a description of the days action or check out Virgil's report below. He was out there the same day.

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Date: 11/4/00
Time: 9 am - 4:30 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Partly cloudy, 65 degrees. Light breezes from the NW gradually built as the day progressed. By afternoon it was blowing pretty good.
Water Temp/Conditions: Water temp 58 degrees F. Tides about a foot above normal. High was 12:30 pm. So we fished the morning on the incoming and the afternoon on the outgoing tide.
Fish Caught: 7 chain pickerel(13 5/8 to 22 1/2"), 26 yellow perch, a mess of white perch and one rockfish (17 15/16")
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Father and son fished the river today hoping to get in a little time before the wind blew us off the river. We started up in Cornfield Creek working piers and shoreline. Caught two pike from the same spot which again confirms our suspicion that right now the pike are grouped. Caught a couple of big (12") yellow perch very near that same spot. Must remember that spot!

When we hit the green marker we set a couple of lines and trolled to the back of the creek on the big motor (saving the electric to fight the wind later.) All the way in the back of the creek we picked up a nice striper on the edge of the last bar in about 6 ft. The wind was beginning to pick up at this point and blow the boat all over so we tucked in near some shoreline and slowly fished the edges while the electric roared to keep us from flying along. Caught another pike, the biggest of the day,  and a few more perch back in there.

The wind was getting to be a bother so we used that as an excuse to take a lunch break. We were back on the water again about 2 pm to fish the outgoing tide. The wind was hard to hide from at this point. We went up in James Pond and picked up a nice pike and some more perch. Spent about an hour in there. From there we tried Holland Point, but found the wind too much of a bother.

Looking for refuge from the wind we found ourselves up in Redhouse Cove hiding on the back side of the piers just S of the ramp. There is a nice flat in there about the size of a football field. We worked it over good and picked up a couple more pike and lots of yellows. We made our last stand over near the golf course where we caught the smallest pike of the day just before heading in. Another fine day on the river.

Date: 11/3/00
Time: 8 am - 4:30 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Beautiful. Cool start but warmed up to almost 70. Very little breeze till the afternoon.
Water Temp/Conditions: Fairly high water levels all day. High was about 11:15 am. Best fishing was on the outgoing tide in the afternoon. Water temp 54-56 deg. F.
Fish Caught: 1 chain pickerel (21 1/2", tagged with tag#0079), 8 yellow perch, 10 white perch.
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I fished alone today. Started the day by fishing some new waters. I made a pass along the W shore of a Y-shaped cove on the S shore of the river just W of Deep Creek. This little creek doesn't have a name as far as I know and I had never been in there before. Worked the shoreline and piers from the river on back to the limit of travel with only a couple of taps and one white perch to show for it. The creek is definitely worth another look, but today's visit was a bust.

Feeling a distinct lack of action I headed back to some familiar territory to see if I could scare up any fish there. I worked my way along the Gibson Island shoreline to the 'perch hole' near Magothy Narrows. This is usually a sure thing if the fish are in the mood. I only managed two nice yellow perch and lost a few minnows there. At this point I'm thinking maybe take a lunch break and let the tide start moving out. The last couple of trips the outgoing tide has had the best bite.

Zipped back to the pier, scooted home, fried up a juicy can of spam, took a nap then headed back to the river for the afternoon. I was back on the river by about 1:30 pm. Headed up into James Pond. This little cove has provided very little action for me this season. I worked the boathouse pier and picked up a couple of real nice yellow perch right away. That was encouraging. Moved across the creek and worked the only other pier in the cove and picked up several white perch. I'm feeling better now.

I worked the undeveloped shorelines of the cove and had sporadic action with perch. There real excitement came by accident. I was getting ready to move a little down the shoreline and was retrieving fast. My lure came to the surface about 25 ft. from the boat and at the same instant a pike smashed it with a boil and a slap of his tail. Had him on for a brief instant but he won that battle. Quickly I made a cast back to the same spot and wham, he hit it again. This time he took the lure with him when he left. Guess I should have checked my line for damage before that second try.

This flurry of activity encouraged me to continue fishing in the cove. I pretty much fished everything there is to fish in there. A few more perch made it to the boat and one nice chain pickerel was tagged and released. As the sun got lower in the sky the breeze picked up a bit and the temps started to drop. I left James Pond and fished the E side of Holland Point. Picked up a couple of perch. Then went back to Magothy Narrows and caught a few more perch before heading in.

Not a banner day, but that outgoing tide saved the day. All fish caught today casting jig/minnow.


I fished briefly this morning before the wind came back up. Water levels were pretty high. Only managed to connect with one white perch working the piers from home out to the mouth of the creek.

Date: 10/26/00
Time: 10 am - 6 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Foggy damp start. Calm most of the day. The fog cleared in early afternoon and temps warmed to the upper sixties.
Water Temp/Conditions: Medium water levels.  Started on the first part of the outgoing tide. Low was at about 12:45 pm. Water temp 63 degrees.
Fish Caught: 18 chain pickerel (20 1/8"-15 3/4"), 42 Yellow perch (largest 11 7/8"), 20 White perch (largest 12"), 1 pansize sunfish.
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I fished with Virgil Poe today on the river. We launched mid-morning out of Mill Creek in Virgil's jonboat. Under the cloak of a dense fog we slipped secretively into a Magothy tributary and fished piers and bulkheads casting dart/minnow. Action was fast and furious for several hours. Measuring, tagging, recording, re-baiting, retying lures. You gotta love it!

The data gathering kind of slowed us down, but it also produced some interesting stuff. At one location without moving the boat we boated, measure, tagged and released 10 pickerel. Since we were tagging them we know we weren't catching the same fish over and over. We had one fish with a tag to boatside but he threw the hook before we could get a look at the tag to determine if he was one we tagged today. And this doesn't account for the several of these battling  seawolfs we lost. This was some real action!

Yellow perch were everywhere today. We measured and released all of those we caught. (Just a reminder to anyone new to the Magothy that the yellow perch fishery is closed on this river. All yellow perch caught on the Magothy must be released.) White perch were scattered and not quite as numerous the the yellows. But I did catch one whopper 12" white perch. Those babies can really battle too on the ultra-light tackle.

We could have probably added rockfish to the list of species caught today, but opted to call it a day. There was a school of breaking fish off the mouth of Mill Creek with birds diving on them. But these tired young anglers had enough for one day. I believe Virgil may be back out on the river again tomorrow. Wish I could join him, but duty calls. See you next time Virgil and thanks for sharing a truly spectacular day.

Date: 10/20/00
Time: 8 am - 1 pm, 2:30 pm - 4:30 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Light Breezes, variable in am and picked up a bit for the afternoon fishing., 65 degrees.
Water Temp/Conditions: Medium water levels.  Incoming for the AM fishing, Outgoing for the PM fishing. Water temp 64 degrees.
Fish Caught: 3 Chain Pickerel (21 3/4, 20 3/4, 21 3/4 tagged and released), 3 stripers, biggest 17"(released), 2 seatrout, biggest 17", 17 yellow perch, measured and released, 10 white perch for dinner.
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Father and son with nephew Bryan had a grand morning on the Magothy. We started off in the 'perch hole' near Magothy Narrows and steady caught yellow and white perch. Then we had a flurry of pickerel action. Ricky landed a nice one and while I was measuring/tagging that one he fished with my rod and landed a second pike almost identical to the first. I topped off the action on the next cast with a third pike of about the same size. The way we've had our pike action lately I'm inclined to think the pike patrol in little packs because if you catch one it's not unusual to catch another from the same area at the same time. Perch action slowed when the pike moved in so we pulled out and headed up in Cornfield Creek.

We worked some piers and got nothing. Not even a hit. So from the green can up the headwaters we trolled 3 lines with jig/minnow along the 7-8 ft. contour and had flurries of action all the way to the shallow end of the creek. I was really surprised to catch seatrout up in the creek, but we landed two of them. We turned  around and trolled back out and picked up one more striper on the way back out. By this time we were thinking of lunch so we headed back to the dock.

After a leisurely lunch we returned to fish for a couple more hours. We thrashed the waters of Grays Creek, trolled some edges in Sillery Bay, trolled and drifted the east side of Holland Point all without catching a fish. Time was getting short and we needed to kick the afternoon skunk out of the boat so we headed back up Cornfield Creek to our super secret spot and fished the edge of the weedbed. Got a couple of taps, but nothing to the boat. Ricky changed tactics and added a bobber above his jig. That finally put a couple of perch in the boat. Guess they wanted a slow presentation this afternoon. Feeling better about kicking the ol' skunk out of the boat we headed for the dock...another fine day on the river.

Date: 10/14/00
Time: 8 am - 6 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Light breezes, variable. High near 80.
Water Temp/Conditions: Medium water levels.  High about 7:45 am. Low about 2 pm.
Fish Caught: 43 yellow perch, about 25 white perch, 3 pike (17 3/4", 20 3/4", 21"), one sunfish. All fished released today.
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Father and son headed out this morning on a high tide. We made a beeline for the upper reaches of Cornfield Creek intent on prospecting the shoreline for pike while we had a little water in the river. We never did connect with a pike there, but on our way back out we trolled the center of the creek and got slammed by something big a couple of times. We failed to hook up so we turned and ran back thru the spot. Ricky connected on this round and battled a nice striper to boatside. It was fat and easily 18".  With a shake of the head the striper escaped with his life at the very last instant. We made a couple more passes, got a couple good hits but failed to hook up anymore.

We made our way back out the creek working piers and trolling occasionally till we got out to the Longpoint community ramp. From there we moved across the creek to the N shore and fished the undeveloped shoreline. We hit a bonanza of yellow perch along the edge of a weedbed there. We pulled in 35 yellow perch in about 30 minutes. Each was measured (as part of the pickerel survey) and released. See the photo for a hint on this super secret spot.

We needed a change of scenery and had lunch on our minds by this time so we headed across the creek to work a few piers and make our way back to the dock for lunch. Over on the N shore of Longpoint we met up with another WWA angler, Joe G. He and his partner said they had connected with some yellow perch along the piers there. We told them about the super secret hotspot and made our way home.

After a lunch break we returned to the boat and hooked up with my nephew Bryan. Bryan never misses a chance to go fishing and he agreed to join us for the rest of the day. Our plan was to run up to Blackhole Creek and give it a good working over. It is a pretty good boatride to the creek, but it was a gorgeous day and a rather relaxing. Once in the creek we began working piers on the E shoreline and connecting with hefty white perch and an occasional yellow perch. Ever on the lookout for the elusive pike.

This deep water shoreline wasn't producing anything but perch so we moved further up the creek and fished some of the shallow undeveloped shoreline with a little wood cover. Here we had a flurry of activity included a couple of breakoffs from pike. We knew we were in the right neighborhood now. After all was said and done we landed 3 nice pike, tagged them and released them. Mission accomplished we headed back toward Gibson Island.

We spent the last hour up in Gibson Island harbor and Redhouse Cove. We continued to connect with white and yellow perch, but our supply of minnows had dwindled to just a few teenytiny ones and the air was getting chill in it. Satisfied with an incredible day of action we motored home into the setting sun. Wew, what a day! If you like perch jerkin', now is the time!

Date: 10/12/00
Time: 8:30 am - 6:30 pm
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Sunny, 70 degrees, light winds (NW)
Water Temp/Conditions: Just a little cloudy, visibility maybe 2 ft., water level extremely low at start and was outgoing till about 1 pm. Low, low water conditions all day.
Fish Caught: 25 white perch, 12 yellow perch, 1 small pike (Tagged # 0057), two small striped bass.

I fished alone this morning since this was a school day for my fishing partner Ricky. Trolled around the mouth of Cornfield Creek while I had my morning coffee and bagel. Picked up white perch on both sides of Long Point. From there I ran south across the river and gave Forked Creek a going over. Most of the shoreline cover was high and dry. Trolled the edges and only picked one small striper. Most of the prime territory is still crowded with boats tied up to mooring bouys and there was a pile driver working on one shore.

Shot out of there and visited Blackhole. Great day to map shoreline cover. It was all high and dry. Trolled in and got nothing. Worked the east shoreline back out and steady caught perch and another small striper. Most of the decent white perch went in the cooler. By this time it was maybe 1:30 so I headed back in to get a bite to eat and pick up my fishing partner who was coming home from school at about 3 pm. 

We were back in the water by 4 pm and went up in Cornfield Creek working piers on the N side of Long Point. Had steady action on perch. Lots of yellow perch mixed in on this shoreline. We also got our only  pike of the day, a dink of 12 1/8".  We slipped in James Pond for a little while, but couldn't scare up anything.

We spent the sunset hour up in Redhouse cove mostly on the golfcourse shoreline. Picked up some more perch there and had one pike breakoff.  We both had several breakoff today. Seem like the pike were taking the jig/minnow deep since breakoffs were almost instant. Should probably have added a heavier leader, but you know how that goes. Shouldacouldawoulda.

We were going to hit the perch hole near Magothy Narrows, but got waved off by some camo'd hunter hiding in the bushes. Imagine that, hunting in my fishing hole. Hmmph!

Date: 10/7/00
Time: Noon - 3 pm
Location: Redhouse Cove on the Magothy.
Weather: Strong West wind
Water Temp/Conditions: Water levels were low, low. High tide at 3 pm was more like a low.
Fish Caught: 10 nice white perch, 2 yellow perch
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Father and son fished the river on this very windy day. The wind affected the water level dramatically. Looked like someone pulled the plug on the river. We attempted a run across the river to the south shore but we were getting too wet from spray to make it worth the effort. Headed up into Redhouse Cove looking for some relief from the wind. Too windy to troll effectively. Boat control was a pain. We ended up going upwind. Dropping the anchor. Fishing. Pulling the anchor to drift a little further along. Dropping the anchor. Fishing. We hit some perch here and there, but that was it. Not much to report, but I did take the camera along!

Date: 10/5/00
Time: 6pm -7pm
Location: Pier on Sillery Bay
Weather: Nice
Water Temp/Conditions: Decent water level
Fish Caught: 10 white perch from 5" - 10", 2 sunnies

Ricky, Bryan and I fished the pier this evening. We trapped some minnow earlier at the park but got mostly grass shrimp. Grass shrimp worked just fine.

Date: 9/30/00
Time: Noon - 4 PM
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Light  breeze variable directions, sunny
Water Temp/Conditions: Cloudy water, maybe 1 ft visibility, outgoing tide to slack
Fish Caught: Dozen nice white perch, half dozen pretty yellow perch, one chain pickerel (20+")

I trapped some minnows yesterday in anticipation of a little time on the river today. Glad I did. Ricky and I bailed out the 14' aluminum "Musky" and loaded her up for some shallow water fishing 'up the creek.' We visited the perch hole near Magothy Narrows and only manage a small white perch. From there to James Pond with about the same results. We were casting jig/minnow. 

Next we 'trolled' a little with the jig/minnow on the inside of Holland Point. Picked up one nice yellow perch, and that was the only action. Ricky suggested we hit the 'perch hole' one more time since the tide had moved a bit. We headed back in there, scraping bottom on the way. First cast, wham. Nice, real nice white perch. Then a yellow perch. And so it went. Caught a nice mess of perch.

We had some fun till the tide finally bottomed out. One of the last fish was a pike Ricky battled to boatside. It was too big to lift, too green to grab and we didn't bring the net. He left with the little green horsehead jig in his lips. All fish released today. Most of them on purpose....

Darn if I didn't forget the camera AGAIN. 

Date: 9/27/00
Time: 5 pm - 7 pm
Location: Love Point
Weather: Light  breeze, gorgeous evening, blinding sunset
Water Temp/Conditions:Visibility was 3 ft. plus,  last of the Incoming tide
Fish Caught: Snapper blues

Father and son with nephew Bryan zipped east from the Magothy this evening to the Kent Island shoreline looking for breaking fish. We encountered a few areas of activity south of Love Point, but found lots of activity in the 'red sector' of the love point light in the area of the southermost range light. I've never fished up in there before and we didn't have a functioning depthfinder, so we pretty much just followed the birds and hoped the bottom didn't come up too quick. There was actually more bird activity than fish breaking. The fish were only on the surface in little pods and they didn't stay up long. Motored home into a blazing sunset. 

Date: 9/14/00
Time: 4 pm - 7 pm
Location: North from the Magothy to 7 ft. Knoll
Weather: Light S breeze to start, but it picked up a bit as the sun set.
Water Temp/Conditions: Incoming tide
Fish Caught: Snapper blues, one short striper and some white perch

Father and son headed N from the Magothy this evening searching for breaking fish. We fed a few plastic tails to some bluefish off Downs Park at the range marker then headed N.  At 7 ft. Knoll we found some breaking fish and followed them around for an hour or more (along with a half dozen other boats.) This was actually the first time we've ever fished breaking schools of fish from our own boat and it was a fun time. Most of the fish were caught on the surface w/ poppers.

We also drifted some peeler around on some of the hard bottom up that way and picked up a few perch, but they were all small. Dark clouds began building over Baltimore and the breeze freshened a bit, so we called it a good day and ran home to the Magothy.

Date: 9/10/00
Time: 8:30 am - Noon
Location: Off the end of Snake Reef, 19 ft. water
Weather: Almost no breeze, muggy, hot
Water Temp/Conditions: Outgoing tide ripping, by about 10 am we were rockin' and rollin' from boat wakes.
Fish Caught: One Bluefish, one seatrout, 2 white perch
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First stop was Fishbone's Bait and Tackle. Word from the staff there was give G11 a shot. We grabbed some chum and headed out. Yesterday there were some limits there. There were 4 or 5 boats out by the can and we like to avoid the crowds so we motored inshore a bit till the finder started beeping regular and set up in about 19' on a mud bottom. The tide was ripping fast.

What little action we(father and son) had came in spurts. The little bluefish found us pretty quickly so we were never lacking in bites, but they were cleaning us out of bait. I put a small tony out in the slick with a bit of alewife for flavor and picked up one trout. Just call me "One Fish Rick."

We quickly tired of being harrased by speeding boats. Called it quits about Noon which is about an hour longer than someone with good sense would have stuck it out. I've gotta start getting an earlier start...the days belong to the boaters.

Date: 9/8/00
Time: 8 am - 11 am
Location: Bay Bridge to LP bouy, then W to Balto. Light.
Weather: Southerly breeze, clear, pleasant temps
Water Temp/Conditions: Outgoing tide
Fish Caught: One Bluefish
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Fished alone today aboard HATLESS. Motored down to the Bay Bridges intent on looking for breaking fish. Never found any. I decided that since I was motoring around I might as well drag some lures so I put out a couple of line and trolled around looking for signs of fish. I zigged E/W up thru the dumping grounds working back and forth from 30 ft. to 50 ft. or so.

Got to thinking I might as well put out a couple more rods and increase my odds of hooking up so I put down the outriggers and set two more lines continuing N. I also dug out my never used (by me) downrigger and set it up with a red surgical hose with the ball at about 30 ft. I found myself up at the LP bouy with nothing to show for it, but a couple of short strikes on that hose.

It was getting about time to head in and go to work (bummer) so I set my course W towards Baltimore Light and raised the downrigger up to 25 ft. I got a couple more hits but didn't hook up. I think my problem is that I need a fixed downrigger clip. I was using the one on the ball which allows the line to move through it and I couldn't 'load' the rod to take the slack out between the ball and the rod tip.

With time running out I began to pull in my spread leaving the downrigger for last. When I snapped the line from the downrigger ball I felt a little wiggle on the line and realized I wasn't skunked after all. Seems a bluefish had finally managed to hook himself on that red hose. I set the timer on the camera for a self portrait with my catch of the day and headed for the dock.

Date: 9/4/00
Time: 9 am - Noon
Location: Lump near G11
Weather: Light NW breeze
Water Temp/Conditions: Weak incoming tide. Calm except for the boat wakes, so it really wasn't calm at all.
Fish Caught: One 21" striper, 6 small bluefish, a couple of white perch and 4 toadfish.
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Father and son got a late start this morning. We stopped at Fishbone's Bait and Tackle for some bait and supplies and were on the water by about 8:30 am or so. Our depth finder was on the blink so we mounted our portable 'Fishing Buddy II" on the transom. Looked a little silly, but it worked as long as we were going slow.

We anchored up near G11 on a lump we affectionately call "Toadfish Knoll."   Started slinging chum and drifting alewife. The slight breeze was opposite the incoming tide so we ended up fishing right under the boat. I can't complain though, since very quickly a striper grabbed my bait and kicked the skunk right out of the boat.

Before long though, the bluefish moved in and devoured every bait we dropped overboard before anything else could get to it. We caught a few of the little buggers, but they were so small they were just plain annoying. Ricky bottom fished some and got 4 toadfish before he caught his first perch. "Toadfish Knoll' was true to it's name.

This being a holiday weekend we didn't expect to stay too late. By about 11 am it got downright goofy. After one cruiser came so close across our bow I thought sure he'd catch our anchor line, and a pair of cruisers sandwiched us with their boat wakes and sent three breakers over the transom we bailed the boat out and got the heck out of there.


Ricky and I went out briefly this evening. Trolled North to G11 and then bottom fished drifting Snake Reef. As I recall we had one small one on when we crossed Toadfish Knoll, but that was it for trolling. Bottom fishing produced a few nice white perch and a jumbo spot.

Date: 8/20/00
Time: 9 am - 2:30 pm on the fishing grounds
Location: Offshore of O.C. at Poormans Canyon
Weather: Comfortable temps, mostly sunny, Northerly breezes picked up as the day went on.
Water Temp/Conditions: Early in the day the chop was light, but by noon or so we were dealing with a stiff breeze and quite a chop.
Fish Caught: 5 longfin albacore tuna, 1 skippy.
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Father and son joined Virgil Poe for a day aboard Lick a-d Split offshore. A co-worker of Virgil's and that co-workers step-dad filled out the crew for the day. We met at the ramp at O.C. at 5 am and were underway pretty quickly. It was still pre-dawn and the running lights failed to come on when we flipped the switch. The anchor light came on overhead so that would have to serve as our nav lights till the sun came up. This was the first of several glitches that would haunt Virgil on this trip.

As we head out the inlet an alarm sounded on one of the engines. The gauge says it's running a little warm. Virgil says it has always shown a higher temp that the other engine and we shrug it off. When he bumps the trottle up a bit the alarm quites and we never heard it again all day. Glitch #2, no big deal.

Virgil wanted to try Poormans. Sounds good to us, we said. So we set a course for Poormans Canyon. There were some heathly rollers, but the chop was light and we cruised out just south of the rising sun. The magical sunrise over the ocean with no land in sight is my favorite part of this offshore fishing.

We got to the fishing grounds before most of the OC fleet and set up a 7 line spread, all plastic. Virgil was showing me a feature of the Raytheon unit where he can see a graph of the temps the boat has passed through. You could literally 'see' the temperature break. Pretty cool. I want one. On second thought maybe I don't want one. It was about that time that the screen went blank and left us in the dark. No temps, no depth, no paddlewheel speedometer, no GPS... nothing.

Fortunately Virgil has a second GPS unit that was working just fine. But we were in the dark for the rest of the day about what was going on under the boat. Every once in a while we'd get a fix and check a chart, but mostly we watched the rest of the fleet to keep our bearings. So we overcame glitch #3.

We had several short pulls on the same rod, a flatline in close off the stern. Something wanted tha lure bad. I'll leave the reporting on what lure caught what fish to Virgil. He knows all those lures like they were his kids. They all look the same to me. :)

The action was spread thoughout the day. Final tally was 5 longfin albacore. Three of them weighed in about 30 lbs. The other two were 25 lbs. Ricky and I had never caught this particular species of tuna so we were thrilled to add this trip to our list of offshore memories.

Twice we had two fish on at once. It was happy pandemonium. Both times we landed both fish. This was a credit to this amatuer crew and Virgil's experience. Ricky (age 12) even worked the gaff on two of the fish. I was actually a little surprised (and proud at the same time) when Virgil told Ricky to get the gaff and talked him through the landing of the fish. That's my  boy!

We got that second double hook-up wrapped up a little after 2 pm and decided to call it a day--right after we get the line untangled from the motors. In the excitement of the battle we had lost track of the long roof rod and the stiff breeze had taken the boat over it and that was all she wrote. Lost the bird and lure and a big chunk of line too. Bummer. I got a shot of Virgil working his magic on the tangle perched percariously on the lower units. With every roller that went under the boat Virgil got dipped in the ocean. I'm surprised he could hang on. Guess that would be glitch # 4 for the day.

Time to head for the barn. The wind had picked up considerably from earlier in the day. Our course home was just off the wind and promised to be a wet one so Ricky and I donned our full raingear and settled down for the ride. Virgil and the rest of the crew stood at the console, got pounded to a pulp and took some occasional spray. Ricky and I sat near the transom and found the ride much easier to take, but a whole lot wetter.

About half way back I noticed a small screw and washer on the deck in front of me, but didn't think much of it. A few minutes later Virgil brings the boat to a stop and goes to work on glitch #5. It seems the electronics box on the T-top had worked loose and was holding by only one screw. Virgil's buddy must have been a boy scout or something because in a flash he had the box secured back in place with a piece of dock line and we were on our way. We stopped once or twice more when it worked loose again, but made it in with no permanent damage to the box.

Back at O.C. I stayed at the fish cleaning station conversing with 'Santa Claus' while he cleaned our fish. The rest of the crew pulled the boat and perpared for the drive home. After saying our good-byes Virgil pulled out ahead of me and he and his truck disappeared around the corner. When I rounded the corner there was Virgil's rig sitting in the middle of the road. His truck had died and wouldn't re-start. Glitch # 6.

As with all the other glitches today this one was just another bump in the road. Virgil jiggled some wires under the dash and he was on his way. Every trip with Virgil is an adventure! :)

Date: 8/17/00
Time: Evening
Location: Trolling Mouth of Magothy to G11, bottom fishing on Snake Reef
Weather: Beautiful evening, fairly calm, light wind from N
Water Temp/Conditions: Strong incoming tide
Fish Caught: One bluefish boated trolling, lots of nice white perch bottom fishing for the last hour, one jumbo spot

Father and son and nephew Bryan fished this evening aboard HATLESS. It was a very peaceful evening on the water. We trolled north with 4 lines. Missed a few hits, but only boated one small bluefish up near Snake Reef. About 7 pm we pulled the trolling lines and tried anchoring near G11. The wind was against the tide and made for an awkward anchor position so we gave up anchoring for drifting. These same conditions made for a nice slow drift on Snake Reef. We ended our day catching some nice perch on bloodworms and softcrab.

Date: 8/15/00
Time: Evening
Location: Trolling Mouth of Magothy to Bay Bridge
Weather: Beautiful evening, fairly calm
Water Temp/Conditions: I forget the tide movement, some floating green algae stuff everywhere
Fish Caught: A couple of blues boated, lost several tails from missed blues

Father and son fished this evening. We trolled till dark. The only action we had or saw was from a few bluefish that hit our bottom bouncing lines. Both fish were caught on a small silver crippled alewife.

Date: 8/12/00
Time: 6 am - Noon
Location: Trolling Baltimore Light north to G13, Bottom Fishing near G11
Weather: Clear and windy morning, Winds out of the N had huge rollers w/ white caps rolling down the bay.
Water Temp/Conditions: Outgoing tide, very rough seas all morning
Fish Caught: One 22" striper, one short striper, 10 real nice white perch, 2 spot and a couple of toads.
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Father and son braved the rough seas this morning and trolled north from Baltimore Light to G13. Picked up one short striper near G11 on a small spoon and that was it for the trolling adventures. It was a rough ride. Circled the small fleet anchored near G13 and trolled back south to G11 with the wind on our tail. No takers.

We anchored up near G11 and bottom fished with soft crab and bloodies. Ricky got one keeper rock on softcrab. We had a little action from perch, spot and toadfish, but it was so rough we were almost glad when we ran out of bait. By noon the boat traffic was getting to us. We called it a day.

Hey, I took the camera today. I don't know how I got the horizon straight on this pic. It was all I could do to stand up to take it. Lucky shot I guess.

Date: 8/10/00
Time:5 pm - dark
Location: Near Green "11" on Craighill Entrance Channel
Weather: Hazy, hot, humid, rained steady for about an hour
Water Temp/Conditions: Outgoing tide.
Fish Caught: Mess of bluefish mostly small but a couple to about 16", 1 undersize striper , several toadfish, half dozen real nice black backed white perch, one 14" croaker, one spot.

Father and son finally got away for an evening fishing. We headed out of the Magothy. The fish finder was acting up so we decided to head up to our old stomping grounds where we knew the bottom. We anchored on the lump near Green "11" and chummed with frozen chum scum. Yucky stuff but ya' do what ya' gotta do. :)

The tide was almost slack when we started but action kicked off pretty quick when Ricky brought a small striper to the boat. We could see it was short so we used our handy dandy dehooker thingy to flip it off at boatside. That was the only striper to the boat for the evening. The bluefish moved in and kept us busy baiting hooks and landing fish. Had loads of fun. Got pretty good and flipping them off at boatside with the dehooker thingy.

We also bottom fished a little and picked up a nice grade of white perch on bloodworms. The perch went in the box for dinner. About 7 pm or so a light shower went through and we debated whether to put up the bimini. Then it started pouring and there was no more debating. We popped the top and sat through the rain playing with the bluefish. Called it quits just as darkness closed in and the skies started to clear a little.

With the wind against the tide this evening it was awkward floating lines. Half the time we were fishing under the boat. The striper hit on alewife, the blues were tearing up the alewife as quick as we could put it out so we switched to cut spot and that held up to the marauding blues a little better.

There were some boats down off Podickory and another fleet of 10 or so boats up at G "13".  Most of the boats disappeared when it started raining hard. Forgot the camera today, but the memories will still linger. Till next time...

7/23/00 Crabbing on the Magothy

Went trot-lining this morning with Gary and Steven in the tin boat. Weather was pleasant and breezes were light. We worked the line hard from 5:30 am - Noon and managed to get 45 keepers. They were big white belly males in the 6-7" range and heavy. Had about 4 doublers, but most of the females were tiny and fell right through the net. We were in about 7 ft. of water just around the corner from the narrows on the South side of the island. We felt we worked hard for what we got, but they were some real nice crabs.

We set up the line near what appeared to be an anchored cuddy cabin with it's anchor light on. As the morning progressed we realized that the boat wasn't anchored, but was drifting. We circled the boat once and yelled but no-one appeared. After a while it became obvious that the boat was going to drift into the nearby rock bulkhead so we went up to the boat and pounded on the swim platform. Up popped a couple of startled heads. We informed them of their dilemma, apologized for the rude awakening and went back to catching our crabs.

Date: 7/20/00
Time: 6 pm - 8:30 pm
Location: Podickory Pt./Snake Reef
Weather: Clear, beautiful pleasant temp
Water Temp/Conditions: First part of the incoming tide
Fish Caught: 10 nice croaker to 15 ", a few white perch and 1 spot, one undersize rock, one undersize seatrout..
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Father and son and nephew Bryan slipped out for a little bottom fishing this evening. We drifted using soft crab for bait. Our first drift was near the fleet of boats anchored off Podickory Point. I guess most were chumming. We never got close enough to notice any action on board those boats. We made one slow drift and had a couple good hits and run offs and landed a couple of real nice croaker. We felt the action was slow and justified going elsewhere.

So we headed up to Snake Reef to finish out the evening. Had a lot more action there. White perch were pesky so we went through soft crab pretty quick, but did land a small striper and a small seat trout along with some more nice size croaker. As the sun began to set we moved out to the lump near G11. Made a couple of false drifts that missed the lump, but when we would hit the lump we got slammed by nice size croaker. Also caught a jumbo spot.

This wasn't intended to be a night fishing adventure so we headed in as the light began to fade and hit the pier just at dark. On the last stretch in Ricky opened her up and my WWA hat flew off to the briny deep. We had been debating her name, but now there is no doubt. The new boat name is HATLESS.

Date: 7/16/00
Time: 7 AM - Noon
Location: Belvedere Shoal
Weather: clouds and sun, threatening rain by noon
Water Temp/Conditions: Tide high slack to start, started out shortly after we set up.
Fish Caught: 15 nice croaker to 16 ", a few white perch and spot.
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Father and son with nephew Bryan set out this morning on a flat calm bay at high slack tide. We saw the fleets of chummers at Love Point and another fleet near G13 on the western shore. We cruised Belvedere Shoal in between the two fleets till we marked some fish and we could also see some bait on the surface then set anchor and commenced the chumming ritual ourselves.

Just as the tide started out and the boat swung around with the tide Ricky got a hit that tore line off the reel and created some real excitement. He battle the fish for over five minutes and we were sure it must be a ray. Boy were we surprised when we got him to the boat and it was a huge rockfish. It was an easy 36" and just as I turned for the net he spit the hook, splashed his tail and swam away.

Most of our action came from croaker today. Ricky was bottom fishing with bloodies from the front of the boat and he caught most of the fish that went in the box today. The kid has the touch, that's all I can say. Every once in a while I got up and grab his ultralight and fished for a while right where he was catching fish. I never caught a fish.

We had one rockfish in the boat today that evened the score for all his rockfish buddies. It was a small fish of maybe 14" and I was going to flip him off the hook and set him free when he managed to free himself and fall right into the chum bucket. Of course, he didn't sit still in there. He commenced to thrash about and make a royal mess.

We pulled anchor about noon and headed in under threatening skies with thunder rolling in the distance.

Date: 7/8/00
Time: Noon - 10:30 pm
Location: Love Point first then Snake Reef
Weather: Breezy and rockin' and rollin' from boat wakes
Water Temp/Conditions:
Started on the very last of the incoming tide and fished though most of the outgoing tide at Love Pt.
Fish Caught: 2 rock at love point(19&21"), Half dozen keeper croaker and a zillion small perch with a few nice size spot.

We went out in the new old boat. Boy, the bay shrunk by about a factor of ten in that bigger boat. Or maybe it was the clear skies. Anyway we just had to try someplace different so we went over to love pt. We got a late start and got to the chumming fleet a little before noon as the tide was slowing down. We set up on the S end of the fleet so when the tide changed we were first in line on the outgoing tide. I never saw another boat near us get a fish, so if they were getting them it wasn't hot and heavy. We got keepers 19&21 and not another bite.

When we ran out of chum we headed back over to Snake Reef. There is no 'reef' as far as I know. The long bar that comes out from the island gets wider the closer you get to shore. The bar is all hard bottom and usually shows 9-12 ft. with deeper water around. The N edge is mostly a more gradual drop. The S edge has some good quick drop to as much as 19-20 ft out near the end. Off the end of the bar if you head toward G11 the bottom comes back up again on another long bar that runs N-S and has a 14-15 ft hard bottom with 17-20 foot around it.

We drifted over the main bar and steady caught perch/big spot/and an occasional croaker on bloodworms. We stayed till dark and decided to anchor. We anchored off the S tip of that second bar. We had run out of bloodies so we used squid and cut spot. We got a couple real nice croaker and a better grade of perch there, but then the tide slacked and eventually changed and started coming in which put on on the point of the bar facing the tide. We stuck in out anyway, but the bites just stopped. Headed in about 10:30. 

FYI, Ricky nailed some of our biggest perch and a couple of real nice croaker on a squid/spot sandwich. A tough bait that the little perch pecked away at and the bigger fish had time to get at I guess.

7/3/00 - The Holt boys got a new boat. The skunk still rides on this boat since we haven't had our maiden voyage yet. Hope to report a skunk free boat soon! newboat1.jpg (32039 bytes)newboat2.jpg (31078 bytes)newboat3.jpg (21986 bytes)

Date: 6/30/00
Time: 6 pm - 10:30 pm
Location: Snake Reef
Weather: Sunny, pleasant, very light breeze
Water Temp/Conditions: water was a little off color, started on the last part of the incoming tide, but most of the fish were caught after the tide change.
Fish Caught: 13 nice croaker to 16 1/2", a few white perch and spot.
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Father and son and nephew Bryan left the pier for some evening fishing and headed out of the Magothy with the setting sun over our shoulder and the last feeble pulse of the incoming tide sliding by. We headed north and explored the lumps and cuts up near green '13'.  We found nothing to get excited about and gradually worked our way south and found ourselves back near Snake Reef. There were a couple of boats anchored out near the channel so we headed inshore a bit. There was still nothing but the occassional mark so we split the difference and picked a spot to try our luck.

We anchored outside the second bar and slipped a chum bag over the side. The tide was really languishing so we mostly put our efforts into getting the lines rigged and bottom fishing with some bloodies. We picked up a few small perch, a croaker or two and some spot.  When the tide stopped we moved inshore just a bit further and set up again in 20 ft. of water just off the end of the main reef for the outgoing tide. Mucky bottom.

It took a while for the tide to get moving again and it was close to dark before we had some action. Or should I say Ricky had some action. While the cut bait sat there being ignored Ricky starting pulling in some nice croaker on his ultra-light with bloodies. He had a little spinner hook with chartreuse beads that he tipped with bloodworm. Every once in a while I'd hear the drag sing and this little giggle and he'd be saying "where's the flashlight I got another big one."

Just before leaving I had good pulls on three successive baits and missed all three. I was using a 4/0 octopus circle hook with a chunk of alewife and followed the standard drill of not setting the hook and just reeling him in. All three times the fish ran with drag singing and then the hook pulled. Ugh! Guess a little bigger hook is in order.

At about that time Ricky was pulling in some big croaker so they might have even been croaker runoffs. When the last of the chum was gone and the last of the bloodies caught Ricky and then Bryan one more croaker we headed on in. With the radio tuned to 'country heartlines' this evening we had us a grand time 'singing along' and joking about the folks that call in on that show. Never caught so many nice croaker at Snake Reef before.

Date: 6/24 & 25/00
Time: All day Saturday and afternoon on Sunday
Location: Offshore of Ocean City
Weather: Sunny and warm
Water Temp/Conditions: 71 degrees + or -, Flat calm on Saturday, a good chop on Sunday from a strong SW breeze
Fish Caught: 3 yellowfin tuna (39,49, and 52 pounds)
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Father and son joined Virgil Poe and a friend, Tom Cherry, for a weekend adventure offshore of O.C. We stayed with some friends of Virgil's near Rehobeth. These folks opened their home to us, even fed us at day's end and have to be the most generous folks I have ever met. From there we trailered to OC early Saturday morning and headed out the inlet to some lumps just N of Washington Canyon.

Virgil ran a spread of 7 lines. He was pulling all plastic on this trip. One of the key ingredients for this trip was a spreader bar with green teasers that Virgil said his buddy Mitch had suggested. Our first fish came on that lure. Ricky got the first turn on deck and battled that fish. It was the battle of a lifetime and he confessed afterwards that he thought the fish might pull the rod from his hands or pull him overboard. He was exhausted at battle's end but the fish (a 52 pounder) was in the boat.

We hooked up with one more fish, a mahi mahi that did a surface dance and threw the hook. Then the action stopped. Most of the boats vacated the area and we discussed our strategy. Or should I say we listened to what Virgil wanted to do next. His idea was to head to the 100 fathom line and work our way north. And that we did!

It was a long troll to the next fish, but Tom had fun landing that 39 pounder. Another couple hours passed and we put the third fish in the boat just before heading in. It was a gorgeous day on the ocean. One of the highlights was when we spotted a pod of dolphins (the mammal) and headed over for a closer look. There must have been a hundred of them and they danced around our boat in an awe inspiring display of natural beauty.

We were back at our home away from home near Rehobeth by about 10 pm with just enough energy left to eat a little dinner and hit the sack. Morning came much too soon and it took us a while to get ourselves going for the next days trip. The wind had picked up overnight and we discussed perhaps staying close to shore out of Indian River. But all those shark we had spotted on Saturday prompted us to stick with our original plan for shark fishing.

So off to OC we went. We hit the ramp about noon and headed for the Jackspot. There was a pretty good chop. so 15-20 mph was about the best we could do on the trip out. We set up our chum line and began a drift. We set four lines with cut bait and sat back hoping for a toothy visitor. Early on we had two pulls that stripped the bait, but failed to hook up.

After a couple of hours, several peanut butter sandwiches, a few cokes and the exchange of lots of theories and strategies we got a wake-up from Ricky who spotted a shark in the slick. The shark visited 4 or 5 times, but nothing we did seem to interest him. We came home sharkless, but wiser about the fine art of sharking. We'll get one next time!

Date: 6/18/00
Time: Early afternoon
Location: Sillery Bay on the Magothy
Weather: Summer heat
Water Temp/Conditions: ?
Fish Caught: A few white perch and a spot

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Father and son and nephew Bryan spent a little time within sight of the pier. We started our adventure in the 'perch hole' near Magothy Narrows where we caught some small perch and a bluegill casting jig/shrimp. From there we fished the N edge of sunken island on the drift with bottom rigs and pulled a few perch and a spot from there. Then the sun came out and boat traffic got crazy so we called it a day.

Date: 6/9/00
Time: 6 PM - 11 PM
Location: Summer Gooses out of Breezy Point Marina
Weather: 70 degrees, Sunny(till the sun went down), light southerly breeze
Water Temp/Conditions: Incoming tide got cranking just after dark
Fish Caught: Dozens of huge croaker, about a half dozen nice sea trout, several short rock.

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Father and son joined Capt. Skip Slomski and WWA member Dave May for an evening of bottom fishing aboard the Jenny Beck. We loaded up on croaker, got a few trout and even brought a couple of rock to the boat. We were fishing in 31' of water on a hard bottom and anchored up in the same location the entire time. We fished standard bottom rigs with squid, squid/soft crab, and squid minnow. We had spurts of hot action with an occasional lull. There were quite a few citation size croaker and Ricky checked in a 'patch' fish of 17" the following day at Fishbones Bait and Tackle.

Date: 6/8/00
Time: 11 AM - 6 PM
Location: Mouth of the Patuxent.
Weather: 70 degrees, Sunny, steady SW breeze
Water Temp/Conditions: Outgoing at the start, not sure exactly when the tide changed but it was late in the afternoon
Fish Caught: A dozen croaker to 14 1/2", one short flounder
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I joined Virgil Poe today for a trip to Solomons in search of croaker. We were on the water by about 11 AM and headed out the river south towards the HI buoy and the two markers south of there. Armed with some inside info, some squid and a few minnows we darted among the many charters down that way and scoped what we were sure were croaker on the Raytheon. We found the drifting awkward in Virgil's Pro-line and eventually anchored in a few spots.

We couldn't buy a fish. Eventually we gave it up and decided to head back to another possible croaker haven back at the mouth of the Patuxent. We set up for drifting in 20-30 ft. of water off the 'Officers Club' and managed to get some fish on each drift. We hit on the idea of dragging a 20 gal. tub as a drift anchor and that helped to slow the drift. It wasn't hot and heavy but we managed about a dozen croaker for the cooler with a few undersized fish released.

So Virgil has added bottom fishing to his repertoire and I got to fish an area I'd never fished before. We both learned a little, had some fun, enjoyed a pleasant day on the bay and thumbed are nose again at that smelly old skunk.

Date: 6/4/00
Time: 7 AM - 1 PM
Location: Off the end of Snake Reef in 22 ft. water.
Weather: 70 degrees, Sunny, light SE breeze
Water Temp/Conditions: Started on a fast incoming tide fished thru slack and into the first part of the outgoing tide.
Fish Caught: 2 stripers (28" & 19"), a few white perch
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Father and son with nephew Bryan chummed this morning off the end of Snake Reef. Action was slim. Fortunately we managed to hook and land the only two stripers that came to visit. The kids picked up a few white perch on bloodies while we waited. Interestly enough the striper pictured had a small white perch in his stomach when we cleaned him. Everything hit on alewife today. The peeler went untouched.

Date: 6/3/00
Time: 7 PM - 8 PM
Location: Shoreline of Downs Park on Chesapeake Bay
Weather: 65 degrees, Sunny
Water Temp/Conditions: Fast rising tide near high
Fish Caught: Nothing!

Use some old raunchy bloodworms and bottom fished for an hour near the ramp. Had one series of bites which cleaned my hook and that was it.

Date: 6/1/00
Time: 9 AM - 4 PM
Location: Chesapeake Bay at Podickory Pt., Snake Reef. Magothy River at Mt. Pt. Bar, Dobbins Island and Magothy Narrows.
Weather: 80 degrees, Sunny
Water Temp/Conditions: Fished an outgoing tide till about Noon in the bay. Then fished the incoming tide in the river for the afternoon
Fish Caught: Lots of white perch and a couple of spot.

I fished alone today. Went bottom fishing during the morning and had plenty of action on perch on the hard bottoms, but they were all small. Picked up a couple of spot at Snake Reef. Went exploring in the river for the afternoon. I think I located 'the boilers' off the high banks of Gibson Island.

Fished the 'perch hole' at the end of the trip. The perch were hitting the minnow/bobber rig and nothing else. Used up all my minnows with a fish/or lost bait on every cast.

Date: 6/1/00
Time: 5 PM - 5:45 PM
Location: Locust Cove of Bodkin Creek
Weather: 80 degrees, Sunny
Water Temp/Conditions: Water level high, tide incoming
Fish Caught: Two carp about 10 lbs.
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Ricky went carping again this evening before dinner and got two nice size carp. Heck of a fight. Got them on canned yellow corn on a fishfinder rig in 18" of water.

Date: 5/31/00
Time: 7 PM - 8 PM
Location: Locust Cove of Bodkin Creek
Weather: 65 degrees, Sunny
Water Temp/Conditions: Water level high, tide incoming
Fish Caught: One carp about 10 lbs.

I joined my 12 year old son this evening on his quest to catch a carp. The carp have been spawning in the upper reaches of the creek for the last month or so. When he has had the chance Ricky has gone there determined to catch one of those big ones he can easily see as they come and go with the tide. The last couple of evenings he 'seeded' an area with corn and this evening returned there with his bag of corn and dad in tow.

I tossed a minnow trap and sat back to watch the grass grow and swat the bugs. Ricky dissapeared in the brush. About a half hour later I hear this spashing. Ignore it for a moment, then thinking I heard his voice decided to investigate. I was half afraid he had fallen in. I took a wrong turn in the bushes, but did get close enough to talk to him and hear in an excited tone, "I got one!"

Now I was excited! With his direction, "Go up the trail and follow the drainage ditch down to the creek," I managed to find him. He was mud from ankles to elbows and one happy kid. Got a shot with the instamatic today, so we'll have to wait for film developing to post  the picture of his first carp. He says he has them figured out now and he'll be going back there again tomorrow.

Date: 5/21/00
Time: Noon - 4 PM
Location: Bottom Fishing, Podickory Pt. and Snake Reef
Weather: 65 degrees, damp, cloudy
Water Temp/Conditions: Fast outgoing tide. Water a little cloudy, some brown water areas (algae bloom)
Fish Caught: Well over 100 white perch, 2 nice croaker, some fingerling stripers.
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Father and son and nephew Bryan fished the bay this afternoon after waiting out the morning rains. We started the trip with a couple of drifts off Podickory Point near the 'no shellfishing' markers jsut outside the crab pots and managed a bunch of perch and one nice croaker. The tide was roaring down the bay and we drug a bucket behind the boat to slow us down a bit.

From there we headed up to the Snake Reef area and fished our usual haunts. Perch were everywhere and we even connected with a croaker up there. In the few hours we fished we went through a dozen bloodworms, two boxes of grass shrimp and a 1/4 lb. of table shrimp. Steady action, but the perch were small on average. The croaker brought some smiles from the boys.

Date: 5/20/00
Time: Evening
Location: Pier on Sillery Bay, Magothy River
Weather: Damp, 65 degrees,
Water Temp/Conditions: Good tide
Fish Caught: About a dozen White perch

Ricky, Bryan and I fished the pier for a while before after dinner and found some perch in the shallows right up next to the bulkhead. Most were small. Ricky got a couple nice ones from the pilings at the end of the pier. We fished grass shrimp on the bottom and on jigs.

Date: 5/16-19/00
Time: Evenings
Location: Locust Cove of Bodkin Creek
Water Temp/Conditions: .
Fish Caught: Nothing, but a couple of almosts

Ricky by himself and once or twice with Bryan tried carp fishing in the cove. They still haven't managed to land one although when they resorted to snagging they managed a couple of brief fights.

Date: 5/13/00
Time: 6 AM - Noon
Location: Trolling  Baltimore Light to Green 9, Bottom Fishing Snake Reef
Weather: 90 degrees, sunny, light winds
Water Temp/Conditions: Didn't check the water temp today, Water was clean and green..
Fish Caught: Nothing trolling, steady action on white perch when bottom fishing. 26 white perch for the cooler and probably 3 times that in smaller ones released. A few fingerling stripers mixed with the perch. One toadfish.
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Father and son started the morning trolling the channel edge north of Baltimore Light. After several hours of dodging other boats, ships and tugs we hung up the trolling rods and pulled out the ultra-lights. We drifted Snake Reef and had steady action with white perch on bloodworms. Most of them didn't qualify for the cooler, but there was never a dull moment. While we still had a moving tide we decided to move out to deeper water and see what the bottom held there. We anchored over a lump near Green 11 and had steady action on a better grade of perch till the tide stopped moving. The sun and the rocking and rolling from passing boat traffic finally did us in and we headed for the dock.

Date: 5/9/00
Time: 6 PM - 7:30 PM
Location: Locust Cove off Bodkin Creek (Downs Park)
Weather: 85 degrees, sunny
Water Temp/Conditions: Low water level, incoming tide
Fish Caught: None!
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Ricky and I went over to Locust Cove to try our hand at carp fishing. The carp have been up in the cove the last several days spawning and raising a ruckus. We talked with a fellow who was in a small paddle boat. He said he had gotten one yesterday. It was hard to find a way to the water. We tried briefly at the head of the cove, but then decided to move further out the creek. We found a way to the water thru the poison ivy and tick infested brush only to find the the tide so low that you had to walk thru the black muck to get to the water.

I wasn't about to wade in, but Ricky just took off his shoes and went for a walk. There were carp flashing and rolling all over the place. Ricky fished a doughball made from a potato roll and some sliced cheese on a small treble. He lost a couple of baits but failed to hook up.

Date: 5/8/00
Time: 8 AM - 11 AM
Location: Magothy River, near Cornfield Creek
Weather: 90 degrees, hazy sunshine. calm
Water Temp/Conditions: water wasn't clean but there was 18-24" visibility of my small white jig.
Fish Caught: Dozen small white perch, 1 yellow perch, 1 sunfish, lost a pike at the boat.
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I had to work a late shift today, so I took the opportunity to fish the river this morning. It was slick calm most of the morning. I moved around a lot casting mostly jig/shrimp (see the pic). Quite a few bait stealing small perch were evident this morning. Had my best luck in the 'perch hole' (super secret spot near Magothy Narrows) but also had some action in James Pond and on the back side of Holland Point. When no-one was looking I pulled out the fly rod and cast a crystal shrimp. I've still never caught a fish on the flyrod, but one of these days...

Date: 5/6/00
Time: 8 AM - 4 PM
Location: Chesapeake Bay off Breezy Point
Weather: 90 degrees, hazy sunshine. Southerly breeze occasionally
Water Temp/Conditions: Water was fairly clean except close in shore near Breezy Point Marina(there was a funky red tide there), water temp varied from about 61 F early in the day to 66 F by days end.
Fish Caught: 5 huge stripers. (36 1/2, 37 1/2, 40,40, and 42 inches). The big hummer weighed in at 30 lbs.
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Capt. Skip Slomski of Jenny Beck Charters invited WWA members Frank T. Lee and the Holt boys for a play day on the bay. Capt. Skip was moving  his charter boat "Jenny Beck" from Stoney Creek to her early season berth at Breezy Point Marina. That meant a beautiful 1 hour cruise to the fishing grounds and plenty of time to get aquainted. Even though he was 'off the clock' Capt Skip accepted the challenge when Ricky said he sure would like to beat his personnal best. That meant he needed a striper of better thean 35" to really 'make his day.'

It was all in fun but darned if the first fish in the boat for Ricky wasn't a 37 1'2" incher! Way to go Capt. Skip!! And that was one of the small ones today! Four more huge stripers made it to the boat today and even Capt. Skip and 'mate in training' Chris got their moment in the hot seat.

Chris, who will be a fine mate for Jenny Beck, had a grueling 1/2 hour fight with the biggest fish of the day. The reel (a Penn 330?) failed near the end of the battle and the fish came to the boat hand-over-hand and bent the net with it's thirty fiesty pounds.

All fish today with the exception of one caught on a large gold spoon were caught on chartreuse/green. I believe the hot depth was in the 50-60 ft range.

Thanks, Capt. Skip, for an incredible day. It was great sharing the day with fellow WWA member Frank Lee. And we all had fun razing 'mate' Chris on his inaugural cruise. What a fun day!

Date: 5/4/00
Time: Evening
Location: Pier on Long Point, Sillery Bay, Magothy River
Weather: Pleasant, sunny, strong onshore breeze
Water Temp/Conditions: Water was a little cloudy due to the onshore breeze. Water temp unknown.
Fish Caught: 5 small white perch

Father and son fished the pier this evening for about a half hour. Bottom fished with bloodworms. Ricky caught them all with his finesse rig (light basscasting sinker and single hook). I got some bites but didn't get but a few nibbles on my standard bottom rig.

Date: 4/28/00
Time: 1 PM - 8 PM
Location: Chesapeake Bay out of Sandy Point from the bridges south to almost Bloody Point
Weather: Mostly cloudy, 50's, Started with a westerly breeze and it swung around to the East by late evening
Tide: Outgoing tide
Water Temp/Conditions: 54.6-54.8 degrees. Brown water. Quite a bit of floating debri.
Fish Caught: One 31" striper.
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I joined Virgil Poe this day for an afternoon adventure on the muddy Chesapeake. Virgil was out earlier today and met me at the dock at Sandy Point about 1 PM. He had been experimenting with an extra two rods in his spread and he managed to learn how NOT to do it on that morning expedition. I took the helm and Virgil untangled the mess on the way back out to the channel edge south of the bridges.

Virgil was confident he had the spread figured out. We worked E/W and gradually worked our way south running a very busy setup of 9 rods and two dummies. We had umbrellas, parachutes, spoons and Stretch 30's in the top 30 foot or so of the water column. Lots of chartreuse, but plenty of other colors for a regular smorgasbord of baits. We couldn't buy a fish for hours.

Had a short pull on a Grey ghost colored stretch 30 that shook his head a few times and was gone. We were marking a fair number of fish in scattered locations, but gradually worked our way south looking for some action. Before we knew it (several hours later) we were south of the ship anchorage and could see Thomas Point Light. We were working in close to a couple of other boats when a fish grabbed the roof rod (white umbrella). With close to 300 ft. of line out that 31" made me work for it.

That same Stretch 30 that had a short pull earlier went off again while I was fighting that fish. But again a couple of shakes of the head and no more fish on the stretch. We were shaking our heads about that stretch not holding fish today. When we pulled that line at the end of the day there were a couple of large fish scales on one of the trebles.

It got pretty chilly as the day drew to a close. We hung in there and trolled our way back north. One fish in the box today and that was it. Virgil was pleased that he had worked out the kinks with running the extra lines. I was pleased with my first 'keeper' of the season. And we were both pleased that we beat the skunk. It was a close call.

4/24/00 Ricky fished with Virgil today and they had a great day of catch and release below the bridges. Here's Virgils report.

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Date: 4/20/00
Time: 1 PM - 6 PM
Location: Chesapeake Bay out of Sandy Point in the area of the bay bridges.
Weather: Partly Cloudy, brisk wind from the S, air temp felt like about 50, it was definitely jacket weather.
Tide: Outgoing tide
Water Temp/Conditions: About 56 degrees at the start just S. of the Bridges. Just before we quit up near Sandy Point light it was 53.8 degrees. Water was cloudy with visibility of not much more than a foot or so. A fair amount of floating debri in the water.
Fish Caught: One 32 1/2" striper. Released.
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Father and son joined Virgil Poe aboard his boat, Lick-AD-Split, to test the waters south of the Bay Bridges. We met Virgil at about 1PM at Sandy Point. He had been out for a brief time solo, but said he hadn't had any action nor enough time to set up his full spread. With crew on board he headed back out to the area just S. of the bridges and on the eastern edge of the channel. Not marking very many fish.

At one point we noticed a peculiar smell and realized we were trolling thru the middle of a big oil slick. Yuck! Virgil hailed the Coast Guard and they sent a crew out in a nifty little inflatable zodiac to check it out. We pointed them in the right direction and told them to follow there nose. We worked our way closer to the bridges and they headed on ther mission.

The wind gradually picked up and it got downright sloppy. At some point one of the back rods went off and young Rick got the first turn on deck. He battle a fiesty 32 1/2" striper to the boat and proudly posed for a pre-release photo. It was his  biggest fish ever. That rod had a chartruese umbrella with tandem bucktails trailing. The fish hit on a bright orange painted bucktail with a 9" chartruese shad.

We hung in there riding the waves and had one more short pull on an outrigger line. Finally in an attempt to outsmart the wind we moved N. of the bridges and worked the western edge of the channel near Sandy Point light. It was a futile effort. Tired from being battered by the wind and waves with a bit of a chill in our bones as the skies clouded over we headed for home.

Date: 3/30/00
Time: 4 PM - 6:30 PM
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Sunny, 55 degrees, lite breezes from the N and W.
Tide: High at Mt. Pt. Bar was about 3:12 PM
Water Temp/Conditions: Estimate 52 degrees, 18" visibility, a little stained from the recent rains.
Fish Caught: One Chain Pickerel (22 1/8") tagged(tag#0055) and released.
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Father and son made a mad dash for the river this evening after work/school. We were on the river by 4 PM heading up into Gibson Island Harbor. Trolled into Redhouse Cove with a couple of hits that were probably perch. Never did connect with one. We drifted the golf course shoreline casting to downed trees, but nothing doing. It was a gorgeous evening with the setting sun so bright you couldn't even see anything to the west for all the glare. We each grabbed a softdrink and a bag of chips for a make-believe dinner, clipped a bobber above our jigs and tossed them out for a peaceful conclusion to our day.

Ricky saw some action in his bobber and grabbed the rod just in time to see the bobber disapear and head toward a submerged tree trunk. He had one heck of a battle with the fiesty pike. We quickly tagged, photographed and released him, our only fish of the evening.

Date: 3/24/00
Time: 9 AM - 6 PM
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Mostly sunny, High close to 70, but it felt more like the low 60's with the lite N breeze.
Tide: High at Mt. Pt. Bar was about 9:30 AM
Water Temp/Conditions: 52 degrees, 18" visibility, a little cloudy from the recent rains. Still some debri floating..
Fish Caught: one hefty white perch and one chain pickerel (21 3/4" tagged with tag#0054)
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I fished alone this morning enjoying a high tide and had the river to myself as far as I could see. First cast in James Pond on the back shore produced a whopper of a white perch for the cooler. I thought that was a sign of the day shaping up to be a winner. But many hours later that was still the only fish to reach the boat. Had quite a few follows and missed some white perch, but I was using some larger minnows and the perch couldn't seem to get a handle on them.

Don't tell anyone, but I cast with a fly rod for about a half hour. It was quite humorous and I'm glad Virgil wasn't there with his video camera to capture it for posterity. I have to admit it was fun. And I think I maybe might have possibly had a tap on the yellow/white deep minnow I was casting. I was having enough trouble with boat control, since I hadn't charged the battery for the electric, that the little bit of breeze that was blowing convinced me to try the fly rod thingy another day.

Ran across the river to Forked Creek. Trolled in on the electric till the battery finally died for good. Fished a few piers and some flooded wood without a hit. Trolled out on the big motor, but I don't have much confidence trolling with that noise-maker in the shallow creeks. With nothing to show for my visit to that creek I ran across to Blackhole Creek. The mooring bouys have been set in the cove there so I worked the perimeter casting the shoreline and drifting. Encountered a few perch toward the back of the creek but couldn't seem to keep one on long enough to reach the boat.

Left the river about 2 PM and I picked up my son from school. Together we returned to the river for the evening. We stayed close to home fishing the fast falling water. Many of our favorite haunts were near high and dry.

I chatted on the VHF with Virgil who was coming out in his boat for an afternoon foray up-river in his neck of the woods. Last I heard he had caught a couple of perch and tagged a couple of pike. Lost touch with him when I went up into Redhouse Cove for the evening. We caught, tagged and released a nice pike up near the golf course and quit in time for dinner. There was a beautiful sunset on the river.

Date: 3/4/00
Time: 10 AM - 6 PM
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Some sun, some clouds, 50 degrees, a bit of a nip in the air when the westerly breezes occasionally picked up.
Tide: Low at Mt. Pt. Bar was 11:29 AM, fished thru the low slack and ended the day on a high tide.
Water Temp/Conditions: 48 degrees.
Fish Caught: one hefty white perch
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Father and son fished the Magothy today. We started the day in Cornfield Creek. The brisk westerly breeze was a bit too much to manage with the electric motor so we gave up trolling for drifting and casting the shoreline. Not even a tap. Talked with Virgil briefly on the VHF. He was having trouble finding a launching ramp since the ramp on Mill Creek was temporarily closed.

We decided to head up river to perhaps find some sheltered water. First stop was Blackhole Creek. The breeze wasn't a problem there. We trolled jig/minnow and worked it over good without even a tap. About the time we were deciding what to do next Virgil hollered on the radio that he found a way on the water on Dividing Creek.

So we headed further up river to say howdy. Virgil worked the upper reaches of Dividing Creek and Ricky and I worked to the back of Mill Creek. We had on pike on briefly that shredded my minnow, a huge lull in the action, then a white perch near the limits of travel in the creek and that was it. We talked with a fellow on shore who said he had gone out early in the day and picked up one pike flycasting from his kayak.

We headed back out and hooked up with Virgil at the mouth of Dividing Creek for a chat. He had done about the same as us, a perch and one missed pike. But he had talked with some anglers in Dividing Creek who had caught a couple of pike one of which was a pike Virgil had tagged and released on a previous trip. That is our first 'return tag' since we started the pickerel tagging program. That's cool!  I'm looking forward to hearing the details on that fish when Virgil checks his records.

We parted company and Ricky and I headed back toward home. We fished James Pond and the perch hole near Magothy Narrows for an hour or so with bobber/minnow and didn't even get a tap. As the sun set and the air chilled we called it a day. A lot of fishing, but not much catching today.

Date: 2/23/00
Time: 9 AM - 5 PM
Location: Magothy River
Weather: Mostly cloudy, 50 degrees, a bit of a nip in the air, but almost calm
Tide: High at Mt. Pt. Bar was 9:20 AM, but water levels were low all day.
Water Temp/Conditions: About 40 degrees, the thermometer was having a bad day.
Fish Caught: 1 chain pickerel ( 19"), 10 Striped Bass(16 3/4",21 1/2", 21 1/2", 22", 26", 21", 19",  22 1/2", 18 5/8", 26"), one yellow perch (9 3/4"), one white perch., All fish released.
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Virgil Poe and I fished the Magothy today and enjoyed some great action. Water levels were low at the start in spite of the predicted high tide. We launched at the mouth of Mill Creek and trolled two rods with jig/minnow. As we swung around into the mouth of Dividing Creek we stopped and fished between the piers. I had a solid hook-up with a heavy fish that fought just long enough to show a bright flash then was gone. Virgil got his adrenalin going with another hook-up that parted his line in a flash. Probably a pike. He added a heavier leader to his 6 lb. P-line.

The water was a bit murky and there was lots of floating debri so we convinced ourselves it was worth the trip to head down river and fish Forked Creek. We motored down and trolled into the creek. Some of the creek had floating ice, but we were able to get back to the head of the creek beyond where Virgil had fished a couple of days ago. Other than a 19" pike which we connected with (tagged and released, tag#0053) in the far reaches of the creek we had no other action. The water was a little cleaner here, but not much.

In search of cleaner water we headed out the creek and across the river to the north shore. We slipped up into one of the larger coves (Blackhole) and trolled a thorough pattern in search of anything that would bite. The water was much cleaner and very little floating debri. A small yellow perch obliged us pretty quickly. The low water levels made some areas we would normally fish a bit too shallow and we found ourselves cleaning baits which had dragged bottom. Virgil finally hit on the idea of running the stern electric motor in addition to the bow for just a little more speed to keep the baits up. That turned out to be just the ticket.

About 2 PM with water levels dropping even lower Virgil worked a point and channel edge in some deeper water. Wham! Drag singing. I had one. Vigil grapped the video camera and we filmed the catch and release of that first striper. We swung back around and trolled the edge again. Wham! I had another one on. This one a little bigger, 21 1/2". Virgil was in his element here. He had a pattern to work. We worked that edge for over an hour following the fish as they seemed to move up the creek a bit. This was all by 'feel', no fish showing on the ancient flasher unit. We had a ball catching 10 stripers, missing a few, filming, posing and trying to figure out where they would go next. The two biggest fish were each 26". Beautiful fish.

The action stopped about the time the tide bottomed out. We managed one white perch to round out the day and motored back across the river in the chilly evening air. Great day!

Date: 2/8/00
Time: 11 AM - 5 PM
Location: Leonard Lake
Weather: Sunny, 32 degrees, just a light breeze occasionally
Tide: N/A, fresh water pond
Water Temp/Conditions: Very cold!, 6-7" ice on most of the pond,.
Fish Caught: 4 chain pickerel ( 18", 20", 21 1/2", 23")
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I joined Virgil Poe today for a trip to one of his favorite lakes down near Salisbury. Early morning temps were a bit nippy, but it was a crisp beautiful morning on the pond. We stopped at Angler's on Rt. 50 for some minnows and to pick up an ice auger which Charlie E. the proprietor had so graciously offered  to loan us for the day.   I ignored the sly humor that I had been invited along just to drill the holes. That's fine, just so I get to go fishing! This was to be my first fishing trip of the new year.

With the recent weather we weren't real sure what the conditions would be or even if there would be enough ice for safe fishing. Things weren't looking real good along the way. Lots of open water on other ponds. Surprisingly Leonards looked pretty solid. With a rope around his waist and the other end of the rope tethered to my 250 pounds Virgil ventured out on the ice to drill a test hole. "Looks good," he said, "6-7 inches at least." So I tentatively eased my mass out onto the ice and tried to forget how cold that water must be under the ice. We started drilling hole and setting rods. We used various buckets and cans to prop the rods.

Before we even had 3 rods set I hear Virgil holler, "Rick quick grab that rod and I'll get the camera!"  Heck, sure Virgil no problem. I landed a nice 18" pike which after the photo op was gently released. With our 'spread' of 6 rods set we settled down to ice trolling ie. watching the rods and moving around just enough to keep warm. Another rod pops off it's prop and bends toward the hole not soon after, but it was a false alarm. Missed that one.

Virgil landed the next fish, a beauty of a 21 1/2 inch chain pickerel. Virgil noticed something unusual about that fish(seems this fish had been caught before by another WWA angler and I'll let him tell that story. There was a lull in the action for a while. Quite a while. I mean a REALLY LONG while. Not even a tap, nibble, lost bait or anything for hours.

We moved our spread down the pond a short way as the the afternoon progressed, but couldn't find any action. Surprisingly not even a bluegill. Most of our rods had jig/minnow, but we fished at least two rods with jig/mealworm. Never had a tap all day on those mealworms.

As the sun slipped lower we began to wonder if this was going to be a two fish day. But another rod started dancing and a 20" pike slipped onto the ice. We set our deadline for 5 PM and it looked like that was going to be it for the day. Then BUBBA came to call. I was closest and grabbed the rod. It's tricky battling a big toothy fish through a 9" hole with a 6 ft. rod! But I won the battle and a beauty of a fat 23" pike came up for a kiss and a good-bye. Nice way to end the trip. We packed it up and headed for home.

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