Ken Penrod's Mid-Atlantic Fishing Report

Week Ending October 3, 2021


Last report for 2021

Keep monitoring our website for “HOT-SPOT REPORTS” the next few months as we will post when things are really good.

Im in Facebook Jail, again, and I’m so sick of their liberal editing and Constitutional over-rulings.

Mailing Address: 4708 Sellman Road, Beltsville, MD 20705

Cell @ 240-447-2206 (Best Way).

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First-Hand Reporting Since 1982—NOT part-time guess work.
Professional Guides Since 1982
Ken Wrote “The Books” on Regional Fishing.
Licensed, Drug Tested, Commercially Insured, Time Tested.

Expert Fishing Instructors for:
Tidal Potomac River <> Upper Potomac River <> Susquehanna River
Juniata River <> Upper Bay <> Eastern Shore Tidal Rivers
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REMEMBER—We have eliminated our land-line phone so contact should be at 240-447-2206 or &
You can’t name a person or organization that has worked-and accomplished more for fish and water conservation in Maryland the past 40 years. Go ahead. I’ll wait.
That being said, I don’t hesitate an iota in calling out the Maryland Department of Natural Resources for, in my opinion, negligence, incompetence, horrible management, political manipulation and utter failure. My target does not include our Natural Resource Police, field employees or licensing staff. I’m taking dead aim at FISHERIES. Follow my reasoning’s;
TIDAL POTOMAC RIVER & upper Bay: The largemouth bass population in two of the most popular (nationally) destinations (Upper Chesapeake Bay and Potomac River) are but a shadow of their hey-days, YET, they condone and encourage mass tournaments during our spawning season and during hot-water months. States all around us have bass seasons. MD doesn’t. MD DNR allows commercial fishermen to haul-sein our spawning-grounds grass beds. MD’s top Two destinations have the “cheapest” fishing license in the country—because both destinations are considered Chesapeake Bay, thus the only license necessary is the “Chesapeake Bay Sportfishing License. (Resident at $15 and nonresident at $22.50.)
Consider that 90% of bass anglers are of the catch and release morality, unlike the Bay and Trout guys, and tell me WHY or what-else is collapsing our tidal largemouth bass populations?
UPPER POTOMAC RIVER, 240 miles of pristine, free flowing water and the smallmouth bass population is at an all-time low. Don’t tell me about those meager stocking attempts. It’s neglect, no-budget, step child neglect.
ROCKFISH of the Bay; what a joke. Once again the fishery has collapsed. WHY? Come-on Man. Overfished and commercially exploited and their food chain is being turned into dog food or fertilizer by a foreign company no less. Did you know that the Governor’s sdvisory committee, you know, the lobby that “advises” the Governor, has a convicted Resource felon as it’s chief spokesman? He was part and party to the 80,000 pound Potomac River largemouth bass bust for illegal catch & sell. Enjoy that ONE fish you may keep. REMEMBER the 80’s when a “moratorium” was invoked. Those that neglect history are bound to repeat it.
Chesapeake Bay Blue Crabs. What crabs? AGAIN, the most famous species of the Bay is scarce and extremely expensive. Wonder Why? Come-on man. Many restaurants have taken crap off of their menu.
CANADA GEESE—did you know that Maryland kills 60% of the Atlantic fly-way geese? Hey—that’s DNR too. Enjoy the shorter season and the one goose you can kill after taking a day off of work, driving many miles and paying about $200 a gun to sit in a blind for an hour or so.
Maryland Oysters: what oysters?
Quick summary: The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is embarrassing.
TIDAL POTOMAC RIVER: *1/2; tidal clear; mid-70s; great tide week
Bass tournaments could be a great source of information/data to MD DNR but they are too busy pleasing the Governor with tax revenue to the detriment of bass productivity. If you have noticed: way too many tournaments during spawn and hot months and yet virtually no DNR presence, no info gathering, no monitoring of released or DOA. IT’s MONEY for Hogan and FDNR.
Its only takes about 10 pounds a day to get a check in pretty big event these days—and that’s what I’m trying to tell you. Today I had a seasoned tournament angler tell me that “I can’t remember when this river fished so poorly.” HELL, I know that. I have the same confessions by many others but in their own circles, it’s always “Ken hates us.” That’s so much petty bullshit. Us vs them is a sorry theme. Unfortunately the “US” in this is usually ME when the boys huddle.”
I fished the upper tidal area, Belle Have to DC and I found it “tough.” We had a four-pound bass today and another Monday but even the small bass are scarce. Small rockfish are eating Case Magic Swims and Big Mouth spinnerbaits—and catfish think they are bass because we catch them on everything.

UPPER POTOMAC RIVER: *; low 70s, clearing; 2.2 at Point of Rocks and steady.
One of the good things about a declining fishery is that fewer people are doing it. I remember periods like the present, usually a result of flooding that scours the bottom and destroys young and food sources-hut there are tough bass in this river and you just have to fish smarter. Not so important to be on the water at dawn-other than traffic considerations. This is spinning-gear territory and I highly recommend the Ardent products spooled with Bass Pro Shops Excel monofilament-6 or 8 pound test-green.
Topwater lures such as the Whopper Plopper or Big Mouth buzzbaits is worth a try. Campground tubes in Penrod Purple, KP Candy or KP Rose on 1/8th ounce RAB jig heads are my favorite—because they work.
The Piedmont launch sites have enough water to run around a bit—but be smart.

SUSQUEHANNA & JUNIATA RIVERS, PA: **; 70s; clear; 4.8 at Harrisburg and 4.7 at Newpoprt.
Good water levels and dropping water temps have surged the success rates but results have been better in mid-to upper Juniata. Still lots of time for topwater lures but Big Mouth spinnerbaits and vibrating jigs are very productive-all day.
CHESAPEAKE BAY (Point Lookout to Tangier); **1/2; 72; tidal clear
We “owned” Point Lookout Friday aside from the two other boats that launched including one that said our 18-foot Parker was too small to be safe.
We have been on a strong bluefish bite near Tangier and that’s where we fished. Along the way, near Smith Point lighthouse, we saw an upside-down boat that will be a hazard to navigation.
I’ve learned a whole new respect for bluefish. They fight as hard and frantic as a smallmouth bass and they never give up. We use Ardent spinning tackle with 12 pound test Bass Pro Excel mono. Those Case Magic Swims work extremely well but bluefish chop them up easily. The Z-Man products are tougher for this job. We also owned the fish cleaning station there and on the way home—we owned the Pax Pub & Gril.
l. LOU Guides for 2021
Captain Ken Penrod: (National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame) Cell: 240-447-2206;; Facebook; LinkedIn; Instagram, Twitter @ken_penrod.
Tidal Potomac; Upper Potomac; Susquehanna River; Juniata River; Maryland Eastern Shore Tidal Rivers; George Stevenson Reservoir and trout streams in Cameron County, PA-near Sinnamahoning..
Captain Dave Kerrigan, VP of Smallmouth Operations @ 301-252-5322;

Captain Brian Barnes @ 302-745-4668,

Meet My/Our Partners.
The following are our sponsors and partners. Some are all encompassing within my group—and some are personal to the guide. All are valued.
RiverPro; Mercury; Lowrance Electronics; Ardent Outdoors; Big Mouth Lure Company; Yeti; Patagonia; Case Plastics; Kuiu; Simms Fishing; Costa; Power Pole; NRA; Zipper Worms; RAB Jig Heads; Campground Tubes; Riverfront Campground; AlumaRyder; (Dave Kerrigan); Guidefitters; NRA; Drake Waterfowl, Fishing Division; Maggie Penrod.