Thursday, April 5, 2012

RVA Stripers

It definitely seems like all the local migrations are happening earlier this year. 
The warm water temps are expediting the process and I, like most fishermen, am not complaining.  The magic of this time of year is more than welcome as many of the popular sport fishing species enter our local waters and get our juices flowing.

Reports of bluefish, puppy drum, flounder, speckled trout, and stripers pepper the local forums.  Togs are also readily available, but remember the closed season starts on April 16th this year.  A few regulations have changed for some of the species, so check out this site if you're not up to date.

The local rivers are also experiencing peak spring populations of anadromous species.  Yesterday, I had the opportunity to paddle out on the James River after work.  Making my first paddle strokes a mere 5 minutes from home was also a warm welcome.  Richmond, VA (RVA) boasts a great venue to take in this special time of year.  Near the I-95 bridge, the hickory shad action was on fire from the first cast at 7pm until I decided to scoot down river around 7:45.  I was hooking up on almost every cast.  If I let my orange and green shad fly sink near the bottom, the white perch were all over it.  After keeping a couple of each for bait, I drifted down and set up two fish finder rigs just above a good size hole.  The little catfish up to 28"were incessant, but every once in a while, I'd hook up a 26"-28"striper.



I was hoping for either a big bertha kitty or a striper that was bigger than "schoolie" size.  It wasn't long and my wish was granted in the form a 38" clicker-squealing heifer.

Various striper lures should work well over the next couple of weeks, including topwater poppers near the fall line rocks. 

 If I don't find myself looking for other highly anticipated saltwater species, I'll be back on the river chasing RVA kitties n stripers.  Hope you get out to your favorite spring fishing destination soon.

14 comments:

  1. Nice Rob, Hopefully the toggy togs will cooperate this weekend I'll be at kipto with some Marylanders..

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  2. Well done sir - did you launch at Ancarrow's that late at night?

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  3. Thanks guys.

    I launched at 6:50pm from the 14th street kayak access point. There's lots of stairs there btw...

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  4. Awesome - give me a shout next time a little earlier in the day, and I'll make it happen. You'll just need to educate me on how to rig my rod for this. Not much of a cut bait angler yet......still learning. Would probably need to run to GTSG and get some lead.

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    1. I don't always know when I'm going (you know how I do). You'll get another invitation when your turn comes back up in rotation :)

      As far as rigs go, it's just a fishfinder rig with 8/0 circle and 2-3oz lead.

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  5. Great striper Rob! This wind has been killing my fishing lately, 20+ winds aren't much fun.

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    1. Yeah, Joe... the winds have definitely been uninviting lately. Spring tends to do that.

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  7. Rob, what wt fly rod do you wish with? I've got a 5 wt I like to catch small bass and bream on, but want to get something bigger for stripers and other large fish.

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    1. I use a 6wt for the shad and other smallish fish. 8wt for schoolie stripers.

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    2. Great. That is exactly the size I was looking to get. What brand do you recommend? The 5wt I have is a TFO which i really like.

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  8. All my fly rods are TFO. Love em.

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