Jamey's right on the money (again) about the herring. They should be staging in the inlets anytime now.... Sabaki(?)Sabuki(?) Sabiki(?) rigs will work great, I usually reserve the gold hooks for fish that are further inland. Once the fish are through the inlets, they tend to run up the rivers and tidal streams pretty fast. Most herring wll run only as far as the first obstruction (usually a dam), even if there's a fish ladder. They don't require clean river gravel to spawn (shad do... )
You also might want to check MD regulations about shad fishing if you'll be as far inland as The Narrows. I think there are special regulations regarding white shad, which some folk below the Mason-Dixon line tend to call "sea herring". The bigger American shad have special regs, too (or at least had them in the past.) I know that PA is trying hard to reestablish shad above the Conowingo.
Live herring is arguably the best bait for a Spring cow. Cut fresh herring is good, cut frozen herring a distant third. Fish the live herring on a float or "balloon" rig. Fish the cut herring on a fishfinder with as little weight as possible. Cut fresh herring might also land you some monster tidal catfish, depending on how far up the saltline you fish.
For fishermen with access to a private dock, they do sell "herring keepers" for storing a supply of live herring. Of course, if herring don't run past the dock, its tough transporting them from where you catch them. Herring are notoriously short-lived in a baitwell.
The best scenario is to find the herring at the spot you intend to fish, catch some using the gold hooks, throw them out on float/balloon rigs, then fish large surface plugs AWAY from the herring. If you get a swirl behind the plug, make the next cast closer to (but not on top of) the float rigs. The idea is to convince the stripers that there is food near the surface. If you see the foat acting funny, or if the herring breaks water, put the plug rod away and be ready....
Damn it, now I can't wait!!!