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With the extended season the long lasting warm weather and the ability to fish just about every day has paid off with numerous memorable trips. I was able to get friends and family on either their first fish or their largest. This was probably my best season yet!

I remember the first time i tried to catch rock fish in the bay. I grew up in Rhode Island so it was a different technique to catch stripers (thats what we call em in New England). I rented a boat from the base (14' aluminum vee hull with a 15hp tiller) bought a lb of squid and rigged some bottom rigs. And all I caught was a sun burn. Thankfully a boat next to us was reeling in their lines and caught an extra fish and gave it to us.

Fast forward 6 years to the present and now I have my own boat and plenty of trolling gear. With the years of knowledge on boards like these and the help of fellow anglers I have jumped the learning curve and can put fish on the boat most of the time. I really want to thank everyone who has helped me through the years!

Today was like no other, the weather man called for a small craft advisory in the evening so I got out as early as I could. I had to wait for the incoming tide before I could leave (very shallow creek in our neighborhood). I ride out to about 30' of water and meet up with a nice center console called Zoo Monkey. We both marked fish and saw plenty of diving birds but the fish wouldnt bite. So he headed south and I went north east. I ended up getting some intel that the fish were biting deep from a guy south of the radar towers(Thanks). So I pulled in 2 rods and put 20oz on one and 32oz on another. Both were tandem 6" shads one white the the other was chartreuse. I set them back out and motored towards 84a. I circled back west and as soon as i crossed from 80' into the 70's I hooked up on a deep umbrella with 12oz 140' back. The rod was pumping hard and peeling drag so I knew it was a good fish. I made sure no boats were around and that I was clear of the ship comming up the bay. So I quickly unhooked the rod from the safety clip and the fight was on. I was hoping for bubba but sadly it was not. As I get him boat side my 20oz tandem starts screaming so I quickly lip it and boat it. My rod was on the deck and a fat 28 flopping around as I grab the tandem. I tightened the drag a little bit and fought a beautiful 26 to the boat. And as soon as he is boat side my 32oz tandem starts clicking. I reel it in and was a skinny 18 that went back into the drink. I quickly measured the fish and iced them. I called out on 68 to share what was working in hopes that other anglers could close out the season in a similar fashion.

I hope everyone had a great day on the water it was beautiful when I was out. What a great way to close out the season. Its not about the fish we catch but the memories that are made on the Chesapeake Bay. I will be back at it in late March to get ready for the season opener.

Mike (Carmita's Dream)
 

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Nice report Mike! Glad that you found 'em!
 

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Mike, I was the CC "Zoo Monkey". I was headed south after grabbing a snack when I heard the guy about the fish near the radar towers. My thoughts were maybe the fish are starting to bite so I actually headed back to where I had talked with you on the radio since that area had so much life in it. As I was getting closer I saw a bunch of birds sitting just off the channel and thought I would check it on the meter, there were fish there but nothing spectacular. I then here from a guy by 84a and since I was closer to there than the radar towers I figured I would drop in the lines and motor over. I began to see lots of bait but still not nothing big. Most of the bait was sitting on the ledges in about 60 to 45 feet of water. I ran those edges hoping to find some feeding fish as I hadn't put any additional weight in my bag to get the lures down. I did swap out my tandems for some stretch 25s. I was getting ready to hang it up for the day despite the awesome weather as I needed to get home and bam one of the 25s gets hit. A nice fat 28 goes in the box. I reset and trolled that section again with no hits and headed for the barn. Glad you got lucky, sounds like we both made good moves.
 

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Great Report.

Zoo, I heard you say you got that 28" er on the stretch 25 down deep. I asked if anyone was catching.

I had a great hit off my board 8/4 white tandem out 100 didn't stay tight, then my WWB 300' spoon 5oz tandem got crushed, felt like a nice fish but came undone after 45 seconds.

Losing hope, we worked over to the deepest hole by BP and the wwb got hit, 28" er. The downrigger tsunami umbrella down 40' got hit at the same time 22" er. Then another 8/4 white tandem 110' off the board popped with a 24" er.

Had two more pop clips 6/9 white tandem out 90' on the board and 6/3 chart tandem 120' on the board.

Seemed like it really turned on around 3:15 yesterday. Great end to the season.
 

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Great Report.

Zoo, I heard you say you got that 28" er on the stretch 25 down deep. I asked if anyone was catching.

I had a great hit off my board 8/4 white tandem out 100 didn't stay tight, then my WWB 300' spoon 5oz tandem got crushed, felt like a nice fish but came undone after 45 seconds.

Losing hope, we worked over to the deepest hole by BP and the wwb got hit, 28" er. The downrigger tsunami umbrella down 40' got hit at the same time 22" er. Then another 8/4 white tandem 110' off the board popped with a 24" er.

Had two more pop clips 6/9 white tandem out 90' on the board and 6/3 chart tandem 120' on the board.

Seemed like it really turned on around 3:15 yesterday. Great end to the season.
Yes, that was me. I was near that hole area. I guess I should have stuck around a little while longer but I was on a schedule. There was a ton of bait along that ledge.
 
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