Saturday, June 21, 2008

Fishing Loch Raven Reservoir

Note: for detailed tips on how to fish Loch Raven Reservoir, click here (how to access LRR) and here (what types of fish and habitat to target at LRR)
Not a bad view for a saturday morning

I decided to get up early and get a few hours of fishing in. The weather was beautiful and I had pretty high hopes. I planned to fish Loch Raven Reservoir because it's the closest "real fishery" to where we live, only about 15 minutes away. LRR receives a lot of fishing pressure, in addition to a lot of passive use like mountain biking and kayaking. However, for whatever reason, the place still produces trophy bass on a regular basis.

Access to the shoreline is not an issue, but the City and County are very restrictive about what boats go on the reservoir, due to the threat from zebra mussels and other critters. As a pretty fair exchange, they do offer jon boat and canoe and kayak rentals, which I'd like to take advantage of sometime this summer.

The reservoir is an impoundment of the Gunpowder River, and the shoreline used to be the site of numerous mills and factories in the area now called Dulaney Valley. In the 1800s, it went by the whimsical name of "The Valley of Jehosophat."

"Old Timber Cove" has tons of structure, and the bottom is very shallow sand that transitions to a steep sandstone dropoff. The 3lb+ bass were about 5' deep right down the face of the dropoff. The 1-2lb bass were at the surface.

Anyway, the hike was easy and the mosquitos weren't out - always a good thing. Fish of all species and sizes were feeding on the surface, which is convenient if you can throw something at them that floats, and looks like a critter.   For once, I actually caught more bass than panfish. I think that was because my topwater tackle, all between the size of 1/4" and 1", was much bigger than what the panfish were eating - basically, tiny beetles falling in the water. Here's one of the few nice panfish I caught - a bluegill. He looks pretty upset but he was barely hooked on this wooly inline spinner, and I released him 5 seconds later.

If the bass are at the surface at 9am on a warm June day...they are hungry for something!

As I mentioned, I stuck with really small tackle and the UL rod, but a fly setup would have really nailed them today. I'll work on that and get back to you!


tugboatdude said...

Damn dude looks like a better way to spend a day than sitting on a tug bored out of your mind.Hopefully we can get a day or 2 in when I come up in July

Tom Sorenson said...

Nice - what a perfect way to spend the day. Time to get out and do some fishing over here...I keep making too many excuses about gas prices and stuff...time to just get out and do it.

Kirk Mantay said...

Exactly Tom. Because of gas prices, I haven't done much "quality fishing" (1.5 to 4 hours from home) this year, but if you can convince yourself to go out at the less exciting spots close to home, you can still have a great time.

MDFisherman said...

It's nice to see some more great photos of Loch Raven. My buddies and I go there frequently visit this site for some structure maps and photos for the reservoir. There is a lot of info to help you catch crappie, bass, and pickerel. Either off the banks or on a boat.

Anonymous said...

where is "old timber cove? Im from louisiana and having to fish from the bank due to no boat so im trying to find some great spots. thanks for your time and i love the blog.

Anonymous said...

Nice where is this cove?

Kirk Mantay said...

There are several coves like this (some of them much better) within hiking range of the Dulaney Rd Bridge and the Warren Rd bridge. Parking is available near both bridges.

Jehosaphat's Mom said...

Nice pics! Looks like a great fishin' hole to me. I'm curious though....why is "The Valley of Jehosaphat" whimsical? It's an old and historic ( and Biblical)name. :)

let us know how you do with the fly!

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