Fishing Report Overview Maryland Dept of Natural Resources
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Latest Update: December 16, 2009

Next Update: 2010!  Happy Holidays!!

Freshwater Fishing Reports

Western Region:

Deep Creek fishermen are anxiously waiting for ice to form thick enough so they can begin their much beloved ice fishing season. Once the ice is thick enough fishermen will be out in force with their tip ups or sitting on a bucket jigging away.

Trout fishermen can still enjoy some wonderful fishing in the regions streams and rivers this winter. Fly fishing with various nymph type flies is the most common way to fish successfully. If fishermen pick their days and watch river flow conditions there is still good fishing for walleyes and smallmouth bass to be had on the upper Potomac. Pickups will be very subtle and lures need to be right on the bottom.

Western region fishermen enjoyed a good season of trout fishing in the regionís streams and rivers due to in a large part to the generous stockings of trout from the stateís hatcheries and the Freshwater Institutes donations of large rainbow trout.

Central/Southern Region:

Largemouth bass fishermen will still be out on the regions impoundments and tidal waters this winter as long as they are ice free. It is no secret to any angler that the bass are holding deep along steep edges and structure such as sunken wood and rocks. The extremely cold waters have the fish in a very slow state of affairs and it will take some doing to get them to pick up a bait.

Fishermen will be switching to light lines generally in the 6lb test range and fishing right on the bottom very slowly. Hair jigs, soft plastics, spinnerbaits and Silver Buddies will often be the baits of choice and fished on the bottom. Pickups will be more of a subtle stop in the line; something like a little twitch rather than a strike. It takes a lot of coaxing to get largemouth bass to show any interest in a bait this time of the year so small, slow and deep is the general equation to success.

Chain pickerel seem to love cold water and they are providing a lot of action for fishermen looking for some pull. Most all of the tidal rivers and creeks within the two regions have populations of chain pickerel and they are common in most impoundments as well. Spoons, spinners and minnows are good choices of baits to use.

Trout fishermen can still enjoy good trout fishing in some of the trout management waters such as the Gunpowder. Fishing nymphs with a fly rod is the most productive method for winter fishing and can be a very satisfying way to fish.

Looking back at the 2009 fishing season, most fishermen would tend to agree that it was a good one. The annual run of hickory shad at Deer Creek provided a lot of catch and release fun. The yellow perch and white perch runs offered some fun fishing and tasty meals. Trout waters received generous stockings of large trout and anglers enjoyed good fishing during the spring and fall months.

Eastern Region:

Fishing for chain pickerel is probably the best show in town right now for fishermen looking for some action on a nice sunny day at their favorite local water. Spoons, spinners, crankbaits and good old minnows are all good baits to use. Largemouth bass fishermen can look for bass holding deep along any kind of structure they can find down there. Steep channel edges, deep sunken wood such as logs or cypress knees or old bridge piers are all good places to fish. Small, slow and right on the bottom will be the ticket to find bass willing to think about picking up an easy meal. The bass are not in much of a feeding mood so one needs to just about put it right in front of their face. Soft plastics, jigs and lures such as Silver Buddies need to be worked slow right on the bottom. Many fishermen switch to light lines this time of the year since the fish are so finicky. Chris Sperlein holds up a nice largemouth bass he caught and released recently from a small pond in the eastern region.

Please check out the following link to a page of some of the young happy faces that came to the fishing reports this past year. May they warm your heart during this chilly season.

Click here to view recent bay satellite images at

Reservoir Bathymetry information:
The Maryland Geological Survey has bathymetry maps on their website:

Links to freshwater flows:

The Fisheries Service is pleased to have you visit. We want to make this site as user friendly as possible, if you have any suggestions, please mail them to Paul Genovese.

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