Facing the prospect of not being able to wade in moving water for nearly three months a look at things to come might be in order. Back in Maryland (and a long, LONG way from Minneapolis) I fish the upper reaches of the Chesapeake bay for pre-spawn stripers. These fish stage and feed along an area called the Susquehanna flats, gorging themselves on herring they push against the shorelines and points, feeding so aggressively you can hear them above the water.

At 2:30 am, sometime in the middle of
April, it will all come together. I fish before the sun comes up, and sometimes after the sun goes down, but when it comes together, the result is often a striper on the end of your line as big as a 4 year old. She will be fat and full of eggs, a perfect picture fish. Given that this is Maryland's catch and release season, I'll take a few pictures of her and send her back to do her duty.

We throw very large plugs and fish with heavy line. This is not finesse fishing, instead, it's tug-of-war combat on a grand scale. When the school moves in you might pull on 15 fish in a morning. Your hands will be chewed up from
lipping them, and if you aren't careful you might wind up in the emergency room with a Bomber 17j in your hand. (I've seen this first hand, but luckily have not suffered it myself).We wade out of the flats at that time of the morning when you switch from a headlamp to sunglasses. Spring peepers can be heard in the woods, and the dogwoods will be blooming soon. If I'm caffineated enough I'll drive the 15 minutes over to the Susquehanna river and fish for hickory shad. But usually, if the fishing is good, it's a McDonald's breakfast, and then back to bed.

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