Fishing The Potomac: The Cooler The Better

Fishing The Potomac: The Cooler The Better
August 23, 2010, 6:42 pm
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Monday, August 23, 2010 2:38 p.m.
By Captain Steve Chaconas
CSNwashington.com Contributor

Water temps are dropping ever so slightlythis week the early morning temp was around 80, climbing up to around 85 on the sunny days, but staying in the lower 80's under cloudy skies. The cooler the better. First thing, topwaters work but it is predicated on the tide, the lower the better, clarity of the water, clear is best and less sunlight. If it's cloudy, you can fish anywhere you can find these conditionsotherwise, find an east bank where the low sunrise will give you a bit more diminished early light. I like the Lucky Craft G-Splash, moving to the bigger G-Splash 80 if there's a bit of chop or the water is a bit stained.

Be quick to abandon this pattern if the sun is up, or the tide is very highthen you can go to moving lures that go a bit deeperjust a foot or so makes a big difference. Otherwise, the optimum time for topwaters is a lower tide, clear water and low lightit might be worth the wait to have these line up!

After that, moving lures like the Mann's Baby 1-Minus work very well! If it's sunny, you'll have to fish water that is a bit stained. Move around grass beds to find clear water, and then move into the stained water, casting back to the cleared water through the stained water. It's best to find an edge of grass at the lower tides! Otherwise, under cloudy skies, go to clear water!

Another lure that works under clouds and a bit of chop on the water at higher tides is a spinnerbait. I clearer water, try double willow nickel blades with colorful skirtschartreuse or firetiger. Craw patterns in chatterbaits work too! Try a faster retrieve first, and then slow down.

Soft plastics work well under sunny skiesouter edge at falling tides, move in at higher tideslooking for mats to use heavy weights to punch through.