Hot summer weather has certainly settled in on the Maryland freshwater fishing scene affecting fish and fishermen alike. Water temperatures are up and fish activity is down. The best fishing opportunities tend to be in the early morning hours; often before the sun breaks the horizon. The low light and cooler conditions entice largemouth bass to prowl the shallows in search of food. Topwater lures such as buzzbaits, scum frogs and similar surface lures are a fun way to fish. Once the mid-morning heat and sun moves in bass can be found retreating to thick grass over deep water. Dropping jigs and soft plastics into this mess can be a real chore but necessary since that is where the bass are holding.
Cooler water can often be a key factor in locating largemouth bass this time of the year so be observant of inlets if fishing in a lake or reservoir; freshwater springs are another factor to look for. If you’re paddling around in a canoe or small aluminum boat bare feet on the floor of the boat can signal a change in water temperature when passing over the influence of a cool water spring. In tidal waters feeder creeks can bring in cooler water and even a flood tide can drop the water temperature enough to spur largemouth bass into increased activity. In the lower Susquehanna River; afternoon water releases for power generation at the Conowingo Dam spurs largemouth and smallmouth bass into activity and is a great time to fish. Dan Horgan holds up a nice smallmouth bass he caught and released while fishing with his dad in the lower Susquehanna after a water release.
Bottom fishing for channel catfish and carp is a good option for fishing this time of the year. Some cool riverside shade, a comfortable chair, cool drinks, a forked stick and a spinning outfit is all one needs to enjoy this simple kind of fishing.