I hope this helps. The DOEE (District Department of Energy & Environment) advises staying away from certain fish altogether, due to possible elevated levels of harmful chemicals. That’s a great spot for Shad, however, the best runs are between March and May. Therefore, I decided to swing by the North Fork in the vicinity of Cabins to see what the water looked like. You should check out as many of these as possible: 1. We also offer floating adventures. This is also a great place to go hiking, check out the waterfalls, and experience some of the Potomac’s amazing wildlife. Any suggestions? What are some of your favorite places on the Upper Potomac? Ka-ching! 3. Fishing on the Potomac River serves as a rite of passage for many local DC, Maryland, and Virginia anglers. The Potomac River is one of the largest rivers on the East Coast of the United States—it has dozens of tributaries and occupies a drainage area of nearly 15,000 square miles. With its convenient position on the river, the campground creates a recreation hub for hunting, fishing, tubing, kayaking, and swimming. Thanks for sharing all the information. Blue Catfish, the largest of the three, typically average between 20–40 pounds, with some monsters even weighing in at 50 pounds! This stream has some excellent wading water but it can also be fished from a small boat or canoe. Share on facebook. Hi Santiago, thanks for reading! Late summer on the North Branch of the Potomac river in the upper catch and release area of Barnum. I fly fish here frequently for trout. Have you checked out Fletchers Cove yet? More reason to target Carp then, I guess! If you have a boat (or rent one when fletchers is open for business) I have had days where I caught dozens of bass going up and down the river. The Tidal Basin is a great spot to experience some good urban bank fishing. Folks who prefer spinning reels can have some fun too, since you can find numerous other fish, including smallmouth bass, in these waters. Our river is full of smallmouth bass, channel catfish, and others. Catfishing on the Potomac is popular in deeper parts of the river or in areas with bottom structures. You’ll come across honey holes, channels, creeks, and bridge pilings scattered along the entire river – from the Upper Potomac all the way down to the Chesapeake Bay. Great read! The North Fork South Branch Potomac River offers great fishing opportunities. Am curious if you know some good quiet places for fly fishing on the Potomac in NoVa or DC?? Kayak fishing on the Potomac has gained lots of traction over recent years. Appreciate any assistance you could offer, Al. Another angler we saw reported equally dismal results. Wade in the shallows, cast from the banks, or fish from a canoe. 3. Summers are infamous for being hot and muggy while winters can get quite cold. They keep that place stocked because of tournaments. Let me know if this link helps, if not, I can send some more info your way. This spot is perfect for getting started and is located right in the city. Fletchers Cove Boathouse and Key Bridge Boathouse have several options available, including kayaks. Your safest bet would be Blue Catfish, Sunfish, White Perch, and Snakehead. Thanks for the article! This section of the Potomac River is pretty quiet. Thanks for reading, glad you found it useful! You’re welcome! This portion of the river holds a huge variety of fish. Have you ever been fishing on the Potomac River? I live in Cumberland and float the Potomac many times throughout the summer. South Branch, North Fork. 2. Congrats on the new boat, that’s exciting! Here, you can also catch Bass and Catfish, as well as Perch, Crappie, and more. WHEN: Saturday, June 30th, 2018. Pohick and Mattawoman are a little further down the road, but not too far. Thanks for reading and for the update! Fountain Head Regional Park: Located about 23 miles south of Alexandria. Leave a comment and let our readers know if you have any advice or special tips before heading out! Here is a list of licensing agents: License Agents. licensing, days to avoid, etc.? Hey Al, that’s awesome, I’m glad to he enjoyed himself! You will most enjoy fishing in the North Fork of the South Branch Potomac River with a pair of waders and a fly rod. Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Fishing and Boating Services initiated a trout stocking program in two different management zones totaling 21 miles upstream of Jennings Randolph Lake. West Virgina fishing license is required. Thank you. by Chad Shmukler - Monday, May 21st, 2012. Fall is also a good time to target Striped Bass, especially in the Lower Potomac region. There are tons of great spots right in the middle of Alexandria, as well as just outside of town. Mattawoman is in Charles county. The river is also one of the most popular Bass fishing tournament destinations in the US. Fishing Access on South Branch Potomac River in Hampshire Co, WV Indian Rocks Fishing Access is a fishing access on South Branch Potomac River in West Virginia. They’re a favorite due to their strength, versatility, and last but not least, their delicious taste! Each tournament has an entrance fee and you can register online on each of the organization’s websites or by visiting Maryland Department of Natural Resources. The Potomac River has long been a vital part of the DMV area’s economy, recreation, and way of life. They’re located in Fort Washington, MD, just south of the bridge. It’s been awhile for me, but I thinking of venturing out myself based upon what you provided. In terms of equipment, you’ll want to use regular spinning or baitcasting gear. Also, remember to check the local regulations before your trip as some species are subject to seasonality. DC offers some of the best urban fishing in the country and it’s definitely worth checking out! I’m glad you enjoyed the article. I live in Dover de. Hi Ed, glad you liked it and thanks for your comment! Let me know if this helps! The North Fork of the South Branch Potomac River has some of the best trout fishing in the area. That’s the beauty of fishing such a vast river with loads of access points on both sides. You can launch from Great Falls or Algonkian Park. It really just depends on which one you’re closest to. Honestly, any of the creeks around that area are pretty productive from my experience. But if you're more into canoeing and spin reels, the river is suited for that too. SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. — If you want to catch a trophy channel cat you have to toss your bait where its mouth is at. My top choice is the Strike King 8XD. general info | campground map | picture gallery | video tour | upcoming events | contact us | campground map | picture gallery | video tour | upcoming events | … VA, MD, and Potomac licenses are valid in portions of the river where the two states share their border. No matter which part of the Potomac you plan on visiting, you’ll find plenty of spots where you can post up and enjoy a productive day of fishing. Aug 27, 2020. The canoeing sections of the South Branch that run from Petersburg to the Potomac River total 75 miles. Potomac River Fishing: The Complete Guide, Sacramento Fishing: Everything You Need to Know. They inhabit vast portions of the river and have thrived here for over a century. So no matter which section of the 43.6-mile river you plan to fish, you're pretty much guaranteed to find a parking spot, and an easy way to get into the water. Good luck out there! Welcome to WV Fishbusters.com We offer professional guided fishing trips on the South Branch of the Potomac River in Hampshire County, WV. Good luck! Let me know if you need any other tips and drop us a comment to let our readers know what you caught. My friend appreciates the info and has helped him in planning his outing. Just under the bridge, you can find some good spots around Middletown. I would also recommend fletchers cove and the area of the Potomac just below the chain bridge for trophy size striper and walleye. Smallwood State Park is a great launching area and the traffic isn’t too bad. Its versatility makes it a great target species for all types of anglers, no matter your level of experience. Hey Erik, thanks for reading! Various techniques are used to catch Striper. Just keep in mind, there’s probably a small fee. Let me know if you need any more info! Rainbow trout. Bass Fishing West Virginia: South Branch, Potomac River Another spot that holds a special place in my heart is the South Branch of the Potomac River near Romney, WV. 4. There were at least 12 trophy channel catfish in the South Branch of the Potomac River during 2014 because anglers caught and registered them in the trophy fish program conducted by the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. Seasoned anglers will usually use light tackle, however, don’t be ashamed if you have to switch to slightly heavier equipment. For canoe rental, current fishing conditions and guided trips on the South Branch of the Potomac, contact Eagles Nest Outfitters at (304) 257-2393 or (800) CALL-WVA. Key Bridge Boathouse, In terms of fishing licenses, since you’ll be fishing above the 301 bridge, you’ll need one of the following: 3 Star Fatty Day! Primarily bass unless you head inland towards the Shenandoah? Any specific launches with potentially less busy than typical launching traffic (still a beginner)? If you’re not sure, you can always check with a licensing agent or a fishing guide before heading out. Any specific boat launches? It too is heavily stocked with trout and provides excellent bass fishing as … Live like a West Virginia local whenever, wherever, Outdoor destinations + local stories & exclusive outdoor events. Have you checked out any parts of the Lower Potomac yet? The stream is located in Hampshire County in West Virginia's Eastern Panhandle.Mill Creek flows into the South Branch west of Romney Bridge near Vanderlip along the Northwestern Turnpike (U.S. Route 50 Fall is also a good time to target Striped Bass, especially in the Lower Potomac region. How is the fly fishing there in the region (NOVA)? You’ll want to use live bait, such as herring or mullet, when going after this beast. Would that still apply to fish being caught on the southern end of the Potomac River area of fort Washington – Fort Hunt VA area. Maryland Bay (Tidal) Sport Fishing License Thanks. Any small baitfish should work. Areas such as Goose Creek in Leesburg and Sugarland Run in Sterling are prime locations for wading and fishing from the banks. 2. South Branch, North Fork. With over a hundred creeks stemming from the river, you’ll be able to find a nice quiet spot and enjoy a relaxing day on your own. The source of the North Branch is at the Fairfax Stone located at the junction of Grant, Tucker, and Preston counties in West Virginia.The source of the South Branch is located near Hightown in northern Highland County, Virginia.The river's two branches converge just east of Green Spring in Hampshire County, West Virginia, to form the Potomac. The South Branch of the Potomac River offers some of the finest smallmouth bass fishing in our state. This is a place that has been a part of me since before I could walk. Fishing in San Antonio – Your Complete Guide. Look for areas with bridge pilings, boulders, and underwater trees that break up the current. Bring lots of flies and some extra line, though, because overhanging branches along the shore tend to catch wayward casts and gobble them up. Title: The Trough River: South Branch Potomac (Near Romney, WV) Trip Description: Join your Upper Potomac Riverkeeper for this one-of-a-kind beautiful and scenic river section of the South Branch Potomac, the Trough! No matter which option you choose, at the end of the day, you’ll experience one of the most diverse and unique rivers on the East Coast. Areas such as Fletcher’s Cove, Rock Creek, and Anacostia Park are excellent for day trips, especially if you’re looking for a good spot to take your kids. Places like Riverbend Park in Great Falls are great for children and beginners looking to pick up on some of the basics. Blue, Channel, and Flathead Catfish can be caught throughout the entire river, but the largest ones are found from DC down to Indian Head. I took a turn south on Smoke Hole Road, rolled across the bridge and pulled into the turnout on the left. If boat fishing on the Potomac further south, what weight line do you suggest in general? I hope things turn around and you start catchin’ some monsters soon. Aside from a place to launch your boat or fish with waders, there's also a cool history museum worth exploring. Fishing on Santee Cooper: What You Need to Know. Where on the Potomac might you recommend I try on my first trip? Surface lures work very well in shallower waters for targeting Smallmouth. Thanks for this helpful introduction to fishing the Potomac. Thanks for the helpful information. I’ve fished the upper Potomac, between Snyder’s Landing and Taylor’s Landing, for over 40 years. Bassmaster and FLW hold their annual tournaments near Smallwood State Park in Charles County, MD. Take a look at this link for more information: https://doee.dc.gov/service/fishdc. Summer is a great time to go fishing because of the wide variety of species you can target. The North Fork of the South Branch Potomac River measures 43.6 miles, and flows through West Virginia before hooking up with the South Branch of the Potomac in Cabins, WV. Potomac River Fisheries Sport Fishing License If you do end up keeping one, the DOEE recommends eating smaller fish and limiting the amount to 3–4 meals a month. Fall is known for its great Rainbow Trout and Steelhead runs, especially in the Upper Potomac, near the North Branch and South Branch Rivers. What did you catch? my favorite parts of the upper potomac are great falls, harpersferry to sharpsburg, and dam 5 clear spring but harpersferry area has to be the best part of the upper potomac with a huge smallmouth bass fishery, walleyes and channel cats. Hi John, thanks for the comment and glad you liked it! Thanks for any feedback. Hope this helps and good luck out there! Trout fishing here is some of the best in the state. Maryland and Virginia have ramped up efforts to combat overfishing and help restore this historic fishery. What are some of your go-to spots? If so, we’d like to hear about your experiences. I hope this is helpful and let me know if you have any follow up questions. Overall, a positive attitude, patience, and extra elbow grease are key for a successful battle against this river monster! Thanks for reading! I’m interested in the area just downstream from the 301 Bridge. Both Maryland and Virginia provide guided services for all skill levels and types of anglers. Loved the article. In other words, this isn’t an easy fish to take on. Hi Marco, Catfishing is best in the winter. Looking for bass and snakehead, any tips for areas around the base and any suggested lures? Thanks for the good work! Check out Algonkian Regional Park or Beaverdam Creek for starters. Since you’ll probably be targeting lots of Smallmouth, you’ll want to have lures handy, such as jigs. Loudon County has some great spots for beginners, especially for kids. I hope this helps. I’ve read that any fish caught closer to DC is consider hazardous. Bass fishing on the Potomac River is deeply rooted in the region’s sportfishing history. Whether you’re looking to go fly fishing, bow hunting, or spend several relaxing hours on the water, you’ll be able to find the guide that’s right for you. If you need any other tips or pointers just holler! Where should I start? Let me know how it goes and if you need any more info! Spring is excellent for fishing on the Potomac River because the weather is just right. Crankbaits and spinners are also effective, as well as surface lures for shallower waters. North Fork South Branch Potomac River is a stream located just 3.8 miles from Petersburg, in Grant County, in the state of West Virginia, United States, near Cabins, WV. They migrate upstream to spawn in fresher waters and tend to wander even further up the river during summer. When you're heading to a river you've never fished or so much as seen before, the looming prospect of several inches of rain isn't a welcome one. Most fishing guides are located in the Lower Potomac, in places such as Fort Washington, MD and Alexandria, VA. SOUTH BRANCH Smoke Hole section, and Franklin Section and Blackwater . There’s a lot more to the nation’s Capital than just bureaucracy and politics. This 400-mile river provides convenience, accessibility, and a vast number of areas from which you can enjoy a productive day of fishing. Nice overview w/o too much detail. Snakehead is an excellent game fish, known for their elusiveness and aggressive striking power. This is also a great recreational area with lots of opportunities to catch a range of fish. And if you prefer to fish from a boat instead of off the shore or a few feet out in waders, you can do that here, too. Fort Washington is also a great place to fish with a kayak or paddle boat which are usually available for rent during the springtime. But, if you want a really good starting point, check out the Seneca Rocks Discovery Center in Seneca Rocks. The river has two sources. Lower portions of the river, you’ll primarily be targeting Largemouth, while the Upper Potomac you’ll target Smallmouth. You’ll start to encounter Trout in the upper reaches of the river, particularly the North Branch and the South Branch, up towards West Virginia. I live in Alexandria, but I’m willing to travel. This of course is considering the species of fish. Just a short boat ride away, you can also hit the Occoquan Bay – a National Wildlife Refuge located at the intersection of the Potomac and Occoquan River. In terms of tackle and bait, it really depends on what you’re targeting. The MLK, FDR, and TJ memorials make a great background shot for Instagram as you reel in a prize-winning fish! Largemouth and Smallmouth occupy different areas of the river – DC serving as the boundary that separates the two regions. This tributary is known for its excellent Perch, Bass, and Snakehead fishing. All anglers over the age of 16 must purchase either a valid MD, VA, DC, or Potomac River Sport Fishing License. Kayaks are especially advantageous for fishing in shallow waters. Thanks for the information, I am a beginner and have been researching our area (Loudoun) to take my kids. The fishing in this quiet stream is excellent, so anglers will enjoy casting their lines here. You may choose to go fishing with some of DC’s famous monuments as your backdrop or head into the wilderness for a more tranquil fishing experience. Let me know if this helps and if you have any other questions. Awesome and informative information! Just make sure you stay up to date as rules and regulations can change each year. Your best bet is to go in with waders, because there are some sharp rocks just under the surface that could cut into a canoe. To find South Fork South Branch Potomac River enter the 39.067608 latitude, and -78.973083 longitude coordinates into your GPS device or smart phone. I am moving out to Springfield, VA this month coming from Colorado. Talk about stealth! You can purchase them online or at any certified retailer like a tackle shop or a sporting goods store. You can fish the Potomac year-round, however, some months are better than others when targeting specific types of species. The South Branch of the Potomac River is heaven for West Virginia trout anglers and those from Virginia and Maryland. Lots of quiet, secluded, and relaxing places to cast from. With new businesses popping up in the city and suburbs, you can pick a rental close to you and plan a weekend adventure with you and your fishing buddies. For one, its biodiversity. About 14 miles are stocked for harvest under put and take regulations while about 7 miles within the Potomac State Forest are managed under delayed harvest regulations. Less than 20 miles south of the Capital, you’ll find amazing fishing opportunities near the towns of Fort Washington and Indian Head. Also referred to as the “Nation’s River,” this tributary represents the cultural and historical seam of the nation’s capital. Let me know if you have any questions or if you need any other recommendations. Thanks for reading, I’m glad you found the article useful. If you need fishing tackle, or are looking for a fishing guide or fishing charter please visit Tackle, Guides, Charters I have caught over 75 fish on a float ( many small fish) but fun none the less. Some sections offer some good pocket water. Downstream in the South Branch, an angler caught the state record smallmouth in 1971, which weighed in at a whopping 9.75 pounds! Hi Liam, thanks for reading! There are plenty of boat ramps along the banks of Ft. Washington, Indian Head, and Mattawoman. Each year towards the end of summer and beginning of fall, several organizations host tournaments with the chance of having your name placed among the greats. south branch potomac river access. When that rain actually materializes, drenching the watershed with steady rain for over 24 hours prior to your arrival, … Upstream is Seneca Rocks, West Virginia's rock-climbing capital… A friend is planning a fishing trip to the Metro D.C. area. The remaining sections are listed in the Canoeing category in this guide. Spin, drift, fly fish – it all works. Mill Creek is a 14.0-mile-long (22.5 km) tributary stream of the South Branch Potomac River, belonging to the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay watersheds. You can also click here for more information. Personally, Broad Creek and Swan Creek are my favorites. There are two fishing piers from which you can target Catfish, Bass, and lots more. Someone should write a book about the Potomac and even then it’s hard to imagine they could cover everything. There are several places to park your car and launch a boat. Lots of helpful info. Fletcher’s Cove is one of my favorite spots as well. Largemouth is less choosy and will also go after small live baits, such as minnows, night crawlers, and crawfish. That’s unfortunate but a very good point. However, it’s recommended to still use precautions. Many towns in Loudoun County, VA provide excellent spots for on-foot fishing. Here, you can expect to reel in lots of Largemouth Bass, Bluegill, Catfish, Northern Pike, and White Perch. Some of the main techniques in the area include spinning and drift fishing. Since planning a trip can seem a bit overwhelming, joining a local guide is probably your best option. Regulations and property ownership may have changed since publication. One of the nicest things about the South Branch is the numerous public access points along the river. Jones Point Park: Just north of the Woodrow Wilson Bridge and south of Old Town. The S. Branch has a well developed set of river access points, 17 in all from Petersburg to the confluence with the N. Branch at Green Spring, WV, 73.5 miles downstream. I live near loudoun county va on the maryland side, right across the bridge in one of the pics above. Other towns in Fairfax County where you can fish the Potomac include Mount Vernon, Fort Hunt, and Pohick. This river is so good that it is not uncommon for anglers to catch up to 100 smallmouths during a full day of fishing. This segment of the river is filled with tons of bottom feeders. Visitors from all over the East Coast also travel to the Potomac in order to check out one of the most underrated fisheries in the US. 4. You’ve probably noticed more and more ‘yakkers’ on the river during the spring and summer. Which invasive species are we talking about? Burke Lake Park: Burke is located about 23 miles southwest. Since then, their population has multiplied and they’ve expanded their territory throughout the entire Potomac and its surrounding tributaries. You make a good point, the Upper Potomac has tons of great spots. For information on planning a trip to the Potomac or Shenandoah, contact the Jefferson County Convention & Visitors Bureau at (800) 848-TOUR. Such an amazing fishery. Good luck. Articles on this site are out of date since some go back to 2006. Access is plentiful along highway #28/55. Indeed, Harper’s Ferry is fantastic. Best trout streams Cranberry, Williams, South Branch of the Potomac near Franklin, North Fork of the South Branch, Shavers Fork of Cheat, and Elk River above Webster Springs. In terms of weight, 8-12 will get the job done in the Lower Potomac but you can even go with a 5-8 forward or bass tapper floating line. This windy, narrow portion of the river provides one of the most beautiful landscapes of the region, making you forget you’re only miles away from the city! 1. Good luck out there! New to the area, been fishing out of Fort Foote park lately. The first two sections are considered whitewater and are listed below. © 2020 RootsRated, Inc. All rights reserved. Below the dam, the tailwaters are a popular trout fishing river as well. Hi Lance, The North Fork of the South Branch is an easy river to fish since Rt 28/55 runs along its length for miles. I feel like it requires a completely separate blog post. I’m glad you found this article helpful. I agree, it’s hard to cover every detail in a blog article. Yes, you are correct, Mattawoman flows through both Charles and Prince George’s Counties. Snakehead is an invasive species that was originally introduced to the region in the early 2000s. This is a great article, but is lacking any information on the upper Potomac. Hey Al, thanks for reading! Any resource material would be helpful as well. The North Fork of the South Branch Potomac River measures 43.6 miles, and flows through West Virginia before hooking up with the South Branch of the Potomac in Cabins, WV. In recent years, anglers on the Potomac have recorded catches in the 30–40 lb range, despite facing dwindling populations. Virginia Statewide Freshwater Fishing License. Do you ever fish Mattawoman? Thanks for the article! Where is your favorite spot to go fishing? You can find plenty of guides that will take you here or you can fish from the banks on your own. Here are the links to their websites: Fletchers Cove Boathouse I think this is a solid list to get you started. You’re in luck, there are lots of great spots for shore fishing around the WW Bridge. trout in the waters of the North Fork of the South Branch of the Potomac River. It is located in the Eastern Panhandle of WV and I highly recommend fishing it when they stock trout. The river sections of the South Branch that run from Petersburg to the Potomac River total 75 miles. Let me know if this helps! With no traffic, you can get there in less than 30 minutes. You can also get some great “on-foot action” smack dab in the middle of the city. Replied on August 27, 2020 There are so many good segments of the North Fork of the South Branch Potomac River, you really can’t go wrong. Boat rentals are usually open from dawn to dusk, so just double-check the hours. The Trough is a canyon on a remote section of the South Branch of the Potomac River in Hardy County and Hampshire County in eastern West Virginia.Its steep, heavily forested walls and rocky outcrops limit access to visitors on foot or to those willing to paddle the river. Alternate names for this stream include North Fork River, North Fork of South Branch of Potomac River and North Fork Potomac River. Also, for Largemouth, stick to the lower regions of the Potomac. Potomac River. Good luck! South Branch Potomac River is a river in Moorefield, VA in Monongahela National Forest, Spruce Knob-Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area, Appalachian Mountains, South Branch Wildlife Management Area. You can purchase it below: https://www.wvhunt.com I’m a beginner looking for shore fishing sites near the WW bridge and advice on gear/tackle to be successful. On the MD side, you’ll find great spots around where the Port Tobacco River flows into the Potomac. I fish the tidal basin spring summer and fall and it’s a great opportunity to catch multiple species – gar, bass, striper, crappie, perch, snakehead, etc. Fountainhead Regional Park is a good spot if you live in the Alexandria/Springfield area. I need to be as close as possible my kayak weighs 110 lbs. From here, you’ll be able to target lots of the same species as on the Maryland side. Can one tell me where would be a good area to launch my kayak for fishing.