Tuesday, September 27, 2016

1st Annual Legends of the Fly Invitational

Still time to sign up for this weekend's tournament!

The Legends of the Fly Invitational (Open to Everyone) is a celebration of the Coastal Virginia fishery and Virginia’s fly fishing culture. Additionally, we hope to draw attention to Lynnhaven River Now’s efforts to enhance fish habitat while also providing support for our veterans through Project Healing Waters. This unique fly fishing-only tournament will allow participants to utilize wading or any watercraft of their choosing to fish their favorite locations.

Angler’s Dinner 9/30
Shorebreak Pizza and Tap House
Location: 2941 Shore Drive, Virginia Beach 23451
Time: 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm

Awards Dinner 10/1
Chic’s Oyster Bar
Location: 2143 Vista Circle, Virginia Beach 23451
Time: 4:00 pm – 7:30 pm
(Buffet Dinner will be served thanks to Owners Cory Beisel and Mike Atkinson)

For additional information go to Legendsoftheflyvb.com


Maryland Weekly Fishing Report - September 27, 2016


By: Keith Lockwood

At the very top of the bay water temperatures near the Susquehanna Flats area are still around 79° this week. One of the contributing factors is that very little water is coming through the Conowingo Dam. Recent rain may change that and help water temperature fall to a more comfortable level for striped bass. There is a limited amount of topwater action early in the mornings but legal-sized striped bass are hard to come by. Lane Miller is very happy with this nice striped bass he caught on a topwater lure near Battery Island.

Photo courtesy of Shane Miller

Farther down the bay sub-legal striped bass can be found chasing bait and marked by diving gulls throughout the upper bay region with larger striped bass, small bluefish and the occasional Spanish mackerel being mixed in at times. Favorable water conditions in the middle and lower bay regions seem to be drawing striped bass in the over 20" size range farther south.

Fishing for white perch has been very good in most of the region's tidal rivers and hard-bottomed reef and shoal areas in the bay. In some of the shallower areas, spot are also being found. Live lining spot continues to be popular along the western edge of the shipping channel from Baltimore Light to the mouth of the Magothy River and near the deeper piers at the Bay Bridge.

The middle bay region has plenty of action this week as a mix of striped bass, bluefish and Spanish mackerel actively chase schools of bait throughout the region. Most of the striped bass are from 12" to 16" in length and tend to be the ones seen on the surface chasing schools of bay anchovies. The larger striped bass may be found underneath the surface action by jigging or by live lining spot along channel edges or trolling. The 30' channel edge from Dolly's Lump south to Thomas Point has been a popular place to live line as well as off of Poplar Island and the False Channel. Trolling a mix of small Drone spoons, bucktails and surge tube lures (hoses) behind planers and inline weights has been a good way to catch a mix of striped bass, bluefish and Spanish mackerel along channel edges and near breaking fish. Water temperatures in the middle bay region are holding around 77° this week and salinities are 17p.p.t. out in the main stem of the bay.

Cooler water temperatures in the tidal rivers will help revive the shallow water fishery for striped bass in the next week or so. Topwater lures are the favorite for this type of fishing along likely looking shoreline on a high falling tide in the mornings and evenings. White perch can also be found in these same areas and can be targeted with lighter tackle, spinners and small jigs. Bottom fishing for white perch has also been very good in the deeper waters of the lower tidal rivers over good oyster bottom. A mix of spot, croaker, northern puffers (also known as "blowfish") and the occasional, small red drum or sea trout may also round out the mix. Blowfish always get a chuckle out of everyone when they inflate while being unhooked. This is a defense mechanism when the fish is under duress. (Hint: rubbing the belly often triggers a response which causes the blowfish to inflate). Here is a blowfish in its non-inflated natural state, caught by Elvin Philip in the Choptank River. 

Photo Courtesy of Elvin Philip

Anglers in the lower bay region are enjoying a wide variety of fishing opportunities this week as larger numbers of striped bass move into the region from the north and bluefish and Spanish mackerel round out the mix. This trio of predatory fish are chasing schools of bait in the lower bay region and are often marked by diving sea gulls who are joining in when bait is driven to the surface. Most of the striped bass are small but there are fish over 20" in the mix and they can often be found deeper by jigging. Trolling a mix of small Drone spoons, surge tube lures and bucktails behind planers and inline weights has been a very effective way to get in on the action near channel edges and on the outside edges of breaking fish or when suspended fish can be marked. The action extends into the lower Potomac and Patuxent Rivers, east to Tangier Sound and north to the middle bay region. Speckled trout are being caught along the Eastern Shore tidal marshes, rivers and creeks by casting Gulp Mullet baits and similar soft plastics as well as by drifting pieces of soft crab baits.

Large red drum continue to provide exciting catch and release action in the vicinity of Buoy 72, the Target Ship and the HS Buoy. Most are being caught by trolling large spoons but jigging when schools can be located is also very effective and provides some intense rod bending action. There are still some cobia in the region and they are being caught by chumming near the Target Ship or farther south below Smith Point.

The bottom fishing for large spot has been one of the greatest opportunities in the lower bay region. The large spot are stacked in the lower Patuxent River and to a lesser degree in the Tangier Sound area. White perch are being caught in just about every creek and tidal river from the Eastern Shore to the Western Shore. The larger ones are being caught on bait in the deeper waters over good oyster bottom. Casting small lures along shoreline structure in the mornings and evenings is also effective and light tackle fun.

Recreational crabbing has been good to excellent in most regions of the bay this week. The upper bay tidal rivers are providing the best crabbing of the season and the middle and lower bay regions have been excellent. Larger male crabs are filling out and are a welcomed sight. Sooks and small crabs are a large part of what is being found on trotlines and collapsible crab traps this week. 

Cool nights are beginning to lower water temperatures in the freshwater reservoirs of the western and central regions and fish are starting to show signs of increased activity. Smallmouth and largemouth bass are becoming more active at Deep Creek Lake and fishermen are enjoying the decreased boat traffic. Floating docks and grass are good places to target with whacky rigged stick worms and small crankbaits. The federal boat ramp at Jennings Randolph Lake has been closed due to low water levels but the Maryland DNR ramp off of Mt. Zion Road is extended enough to be useable. 

The many small ponds and larger lakes that dot the Maryland landscape are providing plenty of good largemouth bass fishing. Extended daylight is becoming a bit sparse these days and making it easier to get out on the water at dawn to enjoy the early morning topwater action. Targeting shallow grass and structure with frogs and poppers provides exploding surface strikes that help define what largemouth bass fishing is all about. The evenings will also be a good time to give this tactic a try. Targeting thick grass and woody structure with whacky- rigged soft plastics during brighter daylight hours will tease shade seeking bass to strike. Jayden Venable got to spend some time at his favorite local pond and holds up a nice largemouth he caught.

Photo courtesy of David Jackson

The Ocean City area is seeing water temperatures dipping to the 72 degree mark this week and as September rolls along subtle changes are beginning to occur with the regions summer migrant species. A mix of kingfish, blowfish, croaker, small bluefish and flounder are being caught in the surf this week. At the inlet a few striped bass and sea trout are being caught in the evenings along with bluefish. Live lining spot has accounted for a good portion of the sea trout and striped bass being caught along with some large flounder. In the back bay areas the water clarity is improving and flounder fishing has been good. Large Gulp baits and live spot have been catching the larger flounder. 

Offshore some nice flounder are being caught on the nearshore shoal areas and the wreck and reef sites. At the canyons white marlin catches have been very good with multiple releases being common. A mix of medium-sized yellowfin tuna, dolphin, wahoo and blue marlin round things out.


Daily Reel...'Tenkara | Roots in Patagonia'


Thursday, September 22, 2016

TLTFF Does #RedTrout2016 and Kicks Off Collaboration with Why Knot Fishing...#StriperCivilWar

The TLTFF Crew is heading south! Mike Dunlap of Barefoot Adventures and I are going for the podium of the 4th Annual CCA Maryland RedTrout Tournament. To get our bearings straight in the Lower Chesapeake, were heading down two days early to pre-fish the tourney and enjoy our time away from work and on the water.

A little info about CCA Maryland's RedTrout Tournament via CCA MD:

RedTrout is a unique catch, photo, and release tournament held at the American Legion in Crisfield, Md. The idea of this tournament is to support the community by drawing tourism as the season begins to wind down. Crisfield is a very special place; not only for its great seafood, but also for its close proximity to our islands, expansive grass beds, and the never ending list of creeks, points, flats, and coves. RedTrout 2016 will give you the opportunity to put your lure, bait or fly in front of a long list of species including: Rockfish, Red Drum, Bluefish, Flounder and the ever elusive Speckled Trout! This tournament truly does present a wonderful opportunity for you to have a fun filled weekend with your friends or family. Enjoy the Tangier sound on your boat, or paddle away from it all and enjoy the solitude in your kayak. In addition to some of the best shallow water fishing around, we will have a live and silent auction, door prizes, Crawfish and Shrimp Boil, Pig Roast, cold drinks, good music and great friends!

Mike and I are stoked to get after some of our favorite species this week(end). One tournament we wanted to fish but unfortunately fell on the same weekend as RedTrout is Why Knot Fishing's 2nd Annual Fall Run Striper Classic. Our boys up north with be chasing the same species as one of our target species, Striped Bass, so we've put together a little competition with them. As the kickoff of our collaborative effort with Why Knot, we've decided to treat y'all with a little thing we're going to call #StriperCivilWar. North vs South, battle of the Team Why Knot and the TLTFF Crew. Follow along on social media, primarily both the Why Knot Fishing and TLTFF Instagram stories. Remember to give us both a follow to see the war go down!

Make sure you put the Why Knot Fishing's Annual Fall Run Striper Classic on your calendar for next year as a must do tournament as the TLTFF Crew intends on being there! A little info about their rad tournament on Boston's North Shore via WKF:

This is our second year hosting this Catch and Release Tournament for Striped Bass on Boston’s North Shore!
The tournament will be an overnight tournament that starts at 6:00pm on Friday Night, September 23 and runs until 6:00pm on Saturday, September 24.
Tournament participants choose to fish in one of four divisions (Fly – From Shore, Fly – By Boat, Spin – From Shore, and Spin – By Boat) and can fish from Boston Harbor to the Merrimack River.
Good luck to all those involved and fishing both tournaments and be sure to follow us on social media to see how Boston's North Shore matches up against the Lower Chesapeake Bay.

Follow along with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram or stick to this post by watching the live Instagram feed below!



E-Zine...SCALE #22


Daily Reel X Fly Product...Sage MOD

Learn more about the Sage MOD by rolling on over to the Sage site.