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Help me build my tackle box!

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I'm a Florida boy that will be in Savage MD for the next two weeks and if I dare brave the cold I'll probably hit the water a few times. I'll have the opportunity to fish what I believe to be the Little Patuxent, right by the house, as well as the DC area of the Potomac with the possibility of access to a skiff.

 

From a high hopes stand point I'd like to try for trout in the Patuxent, as well as LM's and schoolie stripers (never caught one) on the Potomac. So, with that in mind, any thoughts on what lures I should pick up from Bass Pro (or better yet a local shop) would be greatly appreciated. The friend I'll be fishing with on the Potomac mentioned that small crankbaits work well for schoolies. I'll be using appropriate spinning gear the entire time.

 

Also, I am confused on what license I'll need for the DC Potomac area, so any insight on that would be awesome as well.

 

Thanks in advance!

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Fly or spin?

 

Little Pax and Middle Pax had their fall stocking back in October, so there's plenty of trout. A few areas are strictly catch and return, so be careful where you are and the regs call for flies or single hook lures. Maryland freshwater license and trout stamp needed.

 

The Potomac is a little tough, we're in the winter pattern now. You still see a few bass boats out in the DC section, no idea what they're doing. Upriver, smallmouths are gonna be very tough. You might be able to target walleyes on jigs around the Cabin John Bridge area (that's a lot of water, so dig a bit and you may get some more specific info). DC license needed in the DC section, your Maryland license won't work there. The rest of the Potomac upriver and downriver is owned by Maryland, thus a Maryland license, but Little Falls is the tidal line for the Potomac so you need a saltwater license below that area if you're in Maryland.

 

For the Potomac, softbaits (grubs, tubes, etc) on jigheads. You're going to have to fish them slow, the water is in the mid to upper 40's already. For the PAX, single hook spinners (I like 1/24 oz rooster tails) or tiny spoons if you're spin fishing. Flies, can't go wrong with wooly buggers or bead head nymphs. The rain that just moved through here isn't going to be good for the rivers. The Potomac is way up and it will be ugly for a week or so. The Little Pax at Savage is already coming down, so give it a day or so and you should be ok. Check here for water levels: http://waterdata.usgs.gov/md/nwis/current/?type=flow&group_key=basin_cd

 

Good luck.

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Thanks so much! That's exactly the information I needed.

 

I will be using 4lb spinning on the PAX. I wish I had fly gear with me. I just got back from walking the banks and she is a bit dirty, but not the worst. One more question: Is it worth fan casting the wide, slow stretches on the PAX or should I stick to eddies and faster runs?

Bonefish, redfish and dolphin I can handle, but freshwater is still a foreign language to me.

 

I'll report back with any success stories.

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One more question: Is it worth fan casting the wide, slow stretches on the PAX or should I stick to eddies and faster runs?

The key in there is water depth and current. If there's a hatch going on the fish may be anywhere and everywhere. Otherwise they'll orient to undercut banks and the deeper stretches with current. You can pretty much ignore the slow shallow stretches right now.

 

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Potomac near DC this time of year I would have to say SLOW.....jigs and slow rolling spinnerbaits. Creeks meeting the river are always good as well. We usually launched at FT Smallwood for all of the tournaments on the MD side.


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