Friday, October 25, 2013

Pick'n Paper

Shane and I had really been itching to hit the water lately, but we've both been super busy with work and school, respectively. We decided on heading out for a local reconnaissance trip to Weems Creek to see if the Fall/Winter Pickerel bite has heated up with all this cold weather.

Neither of us were really sure what to expect as we haven't targeted pickerel this early in the fall. We hit the water at 1:30pm and fished the falling tide until about 4pm. We used live minnows on a 1/8 oz jig head and fished the ledges, fallen timber and docks.

It wasn't the hottest action, but we both were able to get a little pullage. And we both think that within the next few weeks the bite will really turn on.

Shane started the day off with a fish around 20" that flopped off the hook as he pulled it in the kayak. I followed suit a short while later with a 15.5" fish, that I hooked in about 5 feet of water.

Then.... I got the hit I had been waiting for ever since I caught my 1st pickerel 2 years ago in another Severn River tributary. This was a bite that was much more ferocious than the average 15"-19" that are caught regularly in our local waters. I fought it cautiously as I always fish for pickerel with my Overboard Rod 5' Ultra-lite, the extremely soft tip helps to prevent from setting the hook too hard and pulling it from the fish's mouth. 
As I fought the fish I yelled over to Shane letting him know a big one was hooked!! I saw it surface and knew it would come close to a trophy size fish, so it made me even more nervous getting it to the net. After some patience I netted the fish and brought it aboard. As usual the hook popped as soon as the fish was in the net.
Photo Credit: Shane Clift

24.25" Maryland "Paper" Pickerel!!!
Photo Credit: Shane Clift
I think she's smiling at me!
Got the measurements and took some photos then she was released to be caught again.
This was my highlight for the day, I had one more 16" pickerel at one last stop before I got back to the launch.
Shane ended  up with a few more fish.

Shane with a Weems Creek "Chain"

Smile for the camera.
Oddly there are still some jellyfish in the creek. I would have thought they would be long gone with the colder weather now. Also, there are still a good amount of minnow schools. Once the local minnows dissipate and go wherever they go in the fall and winter, then the pickerel will have less to feed on and we become extremely aggressive. If your looking for a fun type of fishing and a relatively safe trip with this colder weather, then you should plan a day on one of the Severn Tributaries. Weems Creek has its own launch at Tucker St Ramp or you can launch at Jonas Green Park which provides a relatively short paddle to a number of other creeks. I personally like live minnows, they are hard to beat, but pickerel can be caught on an assortment of small artificials (spoons, spinners, grubs, and flukes).

Go Get Em!!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Speckled Trout Two Ways

One of my favorite things about fishing is keeping a few fish for the table. Most of my fish go back to swim another day including my biggest Maryland Citation trout shown below at 26.5''; but there are days where I keep one or two and don't really fish to keep my limit.  Cooking my catch has become a great way for me to experience making new recipes and trying which ones work best with each species. Here are two ways I prepared the speck filets from the trip a few weeks ago. These were both made with Trout but can really be used to fry or bake any fish of your choice.

Fried Trout Tacos

- 2 Filets of a white flaky fish
- Frying Oil
- 1 Cup All Purpose Flour
- 1 1/2 Cups Beer
- 1 Egg Beaten
- 1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 Tablespoon J.O. Spice or Old Bay
- Flour Tortillas

- Lettuce or Shredded Cabbage
- Tomatoes
- Corn & Black Beans
- Shredded Cheese
- Salsa / Hot Sauce


Wash the filets thoroughly. Slice the filets into small bite sized pieces. To make the beer batter; whisk together the flour, beer, beaten egg, pepper, garlic powder, and Old Bay in a medium sized bowl.

Heat the Oil in either fryer or Pan. Dip the pieces into the batter and make sure they're thoroughly coated. Place battered pieces into the hot oil and cook until the are golden brown on all sides. Remove fish from the oil and place on a paper towel covered plate until all of the pieces have been fried.

Heat up the tortillas and prepare the toppings. Place fish in tortillas and top with lettuce, tomatoes, black beans, corn, and anything else you want to add. I usually go with Franks Red Hot sauce to spice it up a bit. 


Baked Trout

This one is super easy and really good with any white fish you have!

- 2 Speckled Trout Filets
- Gourmet Garden Parsley Blend
- Ground Black Pepper
- Butter
- Olive Oil
- Onions
- Asparagus
- White Rice


Preheat the oven to 350. Rinse Filets thoroughly. In a glass baking dish put some non stick spray or olive oil in the bottom and place in filets. Apply some ground black pepper and  the Gourmet Garden Parsley Blend Generously over the top of the filets and spread evenly. Use a few slices of butter and put it on the top of the Filets as well.  Chop the asparagus and onions.

Cook the rice in a separate pan if you want to pair it with the fish and Asparagus. Sauté the the onions and Asparagus about 10 minutes before the fish is going to be done. Bake the fish at 350 for 20 to 30 minutes depending on the thickness of the filets and it will flake with a fork when fully cooked. 

Pair with your favorite beer or wine and Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Fish 4 a Cure Tournament

Coming up the 1st weekend of November Team All Tackle will be taking part in Annual Fish 4 A Cure Tournament.

The proceeds from the 2013 tournament will go to support the Cancer Programs within the Geaton and JoAnn DeCesaris Cancer Institute at Anne Arundel Medical Center.

It just so happens that the Anne Arundel Medical Center is where I work as a Nursing Assistant while I'm in Nursing School. This a a great event that supports a lot of  families in our local area. Take a moment to look at www.fishforacure.orgAlso, please support Team All Tackle by making a donation to our boat. We hope to challenge for the fundraising champion as well as the fishing Champion. 

Donate HERE!!!