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You can net the Helgies in fast water below the dam.
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I use a piece of window screen about 24" x 24". Find some fast moving water in a very rocky area. Wedge the screen between two rocks about 12" apart and raise the back. Go about 10' upstream of the screen and start turning over rocks using your hands and feet. Keep an open eye for hellgramites on the bottom of the rocks. The current will wash everything through the screen leaving 'mites, nympts, crawfish, and minnows. The big 'mites with the red head are killer.
 

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I use a piece of window screen about 24" x 24". Find some fast moving water in a very rocky area. Wedge the screen between two rocks about 12" apart and raise the back. Go about 10' upstream of the screen and start turning over rocks using your hands and feet. Keep an open eye for hellgramites on the bottom of the rocks. The current will wash everything through the screen leaving 'mites, nympts, crawfish, and minnows. The big 'mites with the red head are killer.

That's the trick.
You might find some crawfish in the net too, as a bonus.
Watch for Copperheads below the dam. They love to sun themselves on the rocks beside the river.
 

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That's the trick.
You might find some crawfish in the net too, as a bonus.
Watch for Copperheads below the dam. They love to sun themselves on the rocks beside the river.
Yep lots of copperheads. I see them in the summer when I'm bass fishing there. That's one reason why I wade the river and not walk the banks. I've seen as many as 6 in one day. Just be carefull and alert on the rocks and you'll be OK.
 

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i went fishing for trout yesterday, i caught nothing but both above and below the dam looked like good spots for catfish during the summer, anyone catch any cats there
 

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Yep lots of copperheads. I see them in the summer when I'm bass fishing there. That's one reason why I wade the river and not walk the banks. I've seen as many as 6 in one day. Just be carefull and alert on the rocks and you'll be OK.
When I was a much younger man, I took a young lady down there to show her 'my' spot.
After seeing two snakes slither away on our approach, she wasn't so fond of the place.

Another time, I was unloading my canoe in the first parking lot, and a nice gentleman asked if he could assist me. I said sure.
While we were lifting the boat off the roof of the SUV, a ranger approached. My friend slipped away.
The ranger asked where my friend went, and I told him I had just met him a minute ago when he asked if he could help me get the boat down.
The ranger chuckled when he told me that the guy was probably going to hit on me, and the cave up the hill is a favorite meeting spot.
I thanked the ranger for scaring the guy away, and me not having to break the guy's heart when I turned him down
 

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Im interested in any advice on tactics for fishing the patapsco for smallies. I have been to the daniels area quite a few times. only ever got into some trout. I have walked the RR tracks well beyond the 70 bridge and found some real good looking spots but sadly no fish to tell of. I have tried fishing above the dam for carp as well with no luck.
 

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Crayfish, or Helgies. Net them in the river and float them down on just a hook, or small split shot. The fish aren't too big, but they are scrappy.

Fast moving water, or find a hole or undercut banks on the outside turns all have worked for me.

Inline spinner baits have caught me LMBs to 3 or 4 pounds above the dam where the creek comes on the other side of the river, and under the RR bridge.
 

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The very best bait for SM bass is the ugly hellgramite. Check my earlier post on this thread about catching them. That's what I've been using for over 55 yrs. I've fished every pocket of the Patapsco from Ellicott City to Daniels and have caught and released smallies up to 5 lbs. Maybe we can get together sometime.

 

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Yup, that's him.
They are tough, will last a fish or two. Hook em just once through the second joint, right behind the head.

I carry a 6 foot net with metal pipes on each end, and a small, sturdy 3 tined rake. Spread the net and jam the pipes into the river bottom below some fast water, the faster, the better. Start turning rocks over with the rake above the net. Helgies and cray fish will wash into the net. If you are in the right spot, you'll have enough in short order.
Sometimes, if you don't have a net, just turning over big rocks can yield a critter or two, but a net is much easier. My kids liked catching bait better than fish when they were young.
A good friend of mine and I will park at JohnnyCake rd, drive to Daniels and fish the river from Daniels to there. It is a good afternoons wading, and most times won't see another soul once we leave Daniels
I have floated/drug from Old Court to Daniels, and found most of that too shallow to float unless the river is up. There are some good, productive holes up that a way though.

And, yes there are some big fish in the area, but you have to wade through lots of small ones to find them.
 

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Dena I just run the hook under the collar just behind their head. You're right, many times you can catch 2 or 3 bass on one mite.
Heck ya, I remember catching around 10 bass on one monster 'mite back when I was a kid fishing in WV. They are a crazy tough critter, and don't take them likely, they can rip some skin off the fingers if you aggravate 'em. ;)
 

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fished daniels the other day around the bend. Caught nothing and had no bites. Could see some kinda fish with my polarized glasses that my friend couldn't see. Wouldn't touch anything. Threw joes flies power bait and lures. Nada. I heard daniels was only stocked below the dam but i dont know for sure. Those mystery fish i was seeing could have been small mouth.
 

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fished daniels the other day around the bend. Caught nothing and had no bites. Could see some kinda fish with my polarized glasses that my friend couldn't see. Wouldn't touch anything. Threw joes flies power bait and lures. Nada. I heard daniels was only stocked below the dam but i dont know for sure. Those mystery fish i was seeing could have been small mouth.
Yes they stock above the dam. Those mystery fish were probable white suckers. Use worms, perferably red wigglers (compost worms) and you should catch them. I used to fish for them in the early spring and caught many around 16". Here's what they look like.

 

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While on the topic of Daniels, how would the kayak fishing be above the dam ? I did some searches for posts about that but wasn't coming up w/ too much. From what I could tell, it seems as if there's some sort of launch area right above the dam and that's the south side of about 2 miles of flat water. Was wondering what kinds of fish I might get into. Was hoping for trout, smallies, suckers or carp. All C/R. Anyone got any scoop ?
 

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Back in the day I used to put in a 12' alum car topper above the dam and fish the banks for smallies. My God that was 50 yrs ago. My guess is that you can easily yak above the dam.
 

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Thanks for responding catman. I was curious about the post you made about hellgramites earlier. Obviously, they seem to work like bass candy. Have you ever tried fishing w/ any hellgramite lures / artificials. Any you can recommend ?
 

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While we are on the topic of the patpsco river and it's areas surrounding dams. Has anyone ever fished above the dam in the upper avalon section? I always check it out when I am there and it looks good but have never caught anything nor seen anything. It seems very shallow in the middle with deeper water near the bank on the left side. The left side being the side the parking lot is on in the avalon area.
 

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Hey catman thanks for the input but they didn't resemble that.. looked more like a trout or smallmouth with lock jaw lol. No chases short strikes nothing. Speaking of smallmouth I went there before winter and saw some good 2 lbers we were catchin bluegills on small jigs and bobbers tipped w wax worm and noticed these smallies chasin the gills. So change of game plan we started livelinin and hooked up at least 5 times. Fought em for a min or 2 and everytime they managed to spit the fish and hook before makin it to the bank. Mayb the fish was too big idk. I've caught a really small smallmouth (4 to 6 in prob) on wax worm and trout magnet 1 day. Also caught my biggest rainbow at 13.5 inches at daniels on a joes fly w split shot above. Cast out reel in. I've yet to catch a trout out of daniels this year. I've only caught em at centennial this year and it was only 2 or 3. Thinkin ill prob get em this spring we shall see. Also can't wait for the c&r susky shad fishin. Finally got my best friend to say hell give it a shot w me. Took 2 years to get him into fishin now he's down to go anytime he's free. :) we've been catchin little fish recently
 

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I have a piece of crap phone and the cursors goin nuts so I couldmt finish the post. We have no boat and can't really find a good spot as of recent. Mite hit beachwood nex week possibly and the fishin flea market. Last beachwood trip resulted in losin a pickeral (bit the line) on 1 of my hand tied chartruse and white jig w flash. That was it for 4 hrs. My buddy had no bites at all.
 
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