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Capt Brady

Fishing Report 11/8/11 out of Buzz's Marina, Ridge MD (near Pt Lookout)

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Departed at the crack of 0730 to a Bay flat calm, which stayed flat with winds less than 5kts all day. Very unusual weather for this time of the year !


Straight magnetic east out of St Jerome's Creek to Buoy 72, about six nm.. The initial plan was to locate breakers with gannets . When we got over there, that wasn't happening so we proceeded south along the eastern edge of the ships channel and eventually started encountering pods of breaking stripers with a disproportionate number of small gulls. Because it was so flat,with the tide coming in, we were able to fly fish and release dozens of rockfish in the 17"-19" range. Occasionally about once in every twenty casts or so, a larger striper came out from under the breakers. Basically what we were seeing was predation on bay anchovies scattered about the surface and smaller flies were very effective, even over the spinning rod. So we used an integrated head line, a 350gr depth charge line on a 9wt with about six feet of straight 20#fluorocarbon tippet. We could have used an intermediate line or a floating, but my client preferred the sinker and that way he could choose to go deep or shallow, as we were using a fast paced stripping technique designed to mimic the darting flight of panicky minnows. We also used a popper on a floating eight weight and a deeper 450gr line for larger flies deeper. I put my sport on pod after pod of casting opportunities for hours chasing birds until we were about seven miles south of the target ship , in forty feet of water. then we came back north northeast, into the Mud Leads and serviced the scattered pods there, through a tide change, until the Navy ran us and other boats out of the area because there was a helicopter scheduled to rapid cannon fire the target. We diverted to the east out of the safety zone and proceeded into Holland Straits where no fish were located, then westward through one of the cuts through Holland Island going towards Buoy 72. To our port we could watch the helicopter fire on the target ship : let me tell ya it ain't no joke. Between Holland and 72 more pods of smallish fish but willing to eat flies. Arrived back at 72 around 1430hrs to a strong outgoing tide. There we changed tactics and started throwing bigger half &half flies , trying to work a deep to shallow erratic flight technique which would appeal to larger fish. At this point I broke out the spinning rod and threw a diving crankbait, minnow type and used a rapid and erratic retrieve which produced several follows of larger fish in the 24-28" range by my guess. This told me two things that I had suspected; the bigger fish wanted bigger baits, more speed and erratic. Frankly, a fly line is not the proper tool in that situation. Did not encounter either huge sea-run rockfish, or gannets, or schools of menhaden. However did "paint" menhaden in ships channel deep around forty-fifty feet deep on return trip to Buzz's Marina.


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