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Fishing The Upper Bay: Conwingo Reservoir - By: Capt. Karl Bunch - Aug. 2004
On 'Fishing the Upper Bay with Karl Bunch', myself and my co-angler Craig Eddy are going to reveal to you where the local upper Bay fisherman can go to enjoy or sharpen their deep clear-water, non-tidal fishing skills.

Our destination is known as either Conowingo Lake or Conowingo Reservoir and for this article we will refer to it as Conowingo Lake.-The Lake is basically created by the Conowingo Dam on Route 1, which spans across the Susquehanna River, the area known as Conowingo Lake is North of the Dam.

Our day of fishing started at 5:00am out of Glen Cove Marina. Craig fired up the Johnson 225 hp on his Ranger 492 boat and we headed south towards the Dam for our first stop of the day on the Harford County side of the lake to fish a point just above the Dam known as Warning Sign-Point. This is appropriately named as this sign warns you of the Dam just below it. We then used the Garmin GPS map 168 sounder to position ourselves where we wanted to be on the point. Craig opted to fish the point with a small black & blue Bitsy Bug Jig which produced our one keeper 12",1/2-inch smallmouth fish off of the point. I fished the point with a Glamour Shad 1/4 ounce white & chartreuse painted blade spinnerbait with Carolina Lunker Sauce applied.

From the point we worked our way into a small cove off the point. Craig lost a nice size fish in the cove and we both caught several more bass under 12 inches. Once in the cove the sunfish were biting the spinnerbait very aggressively. Though not bass, they can be a lot of fun to catch and help to keep the trip fun if you are taking a kid fishing with you.

For our second stop of the day we headed across the lake to an area known as Funks Pond or Funks Run. You must navigate slowly with your trolling motor and stay low to pass under the railroad bridge to enter Funks Pond. Before passing under the railroad bridge we fished the area outside of the bridge on the main lake with jigs, crankbaits & spinnerbaits but we could not get a 12" keeper. Once again a lot of sunfish were caught on the spinnerbait. We then headed under the bridge into funks pond at 7:48am. To our amazement there were numerous laydowns across the small channel leading into Funks Pond but we finally maneuvered the Ranger thru and over them to get into the pond, but once again we could not catch a 12" keeper bass in this area.

Now at this point our bass fisherman pride was a little hurt but we headed out of the pond at 8:50am and fished the shore line north above Funks Pond. My co-host, Craig hooked a nice smallmouth and for a very few seconds we started to feel our fishermen's pride start to heal until the smallmouth broke off his jig and then we both felt like someone had just thrown salt on our wounded fishermen's pride. We quickly retied and continued up the shoreline. Then at 9:10am just what the captain ordered! I caught a nice 13" 1/2 inch largemouth on a 200 series Bandit Rootbeer/Chartreuse crankbait using 10 pound Platinum Green IZORLINE. Needless to say, this fish was coming in the boat. The fish was holding tight on some wood on the shore. Now we-felt like we were-King of the lake until 9:20am when Craig hooked another nice smallmouth on the jig but the smallmouth quickly showed us who was King of the lake when he got off and now Craig asks if he can use some of my Carolina Lunker Sauce.

We quickly fired up the Johnson outboard and decided to head the Ranger to the mouth of Broad Creek for our next stop. By now it was 11:12am and we were determined to put our third keeper in the livewell. Once again the sunfish kept me busy as they just could not resist the new Glamour Shad 1/4 ounce White/Chartreuse painted blade spinnerbait and I was fishing it on 12 pound Platinum Green IZORLINE. We headed towards the back of Broad Creek but about half way back into the creek it was very tough navigating thru the log jams so we turned around and then right in the bend of the creek was some rocks and wood laydowns on the shore and Craig hooked a nice largemouth on the jig and in the boat this one came.-We both decided to leave Broad Creek while we still had smiles on our faces.

We decided to head back south to our first stop at the Warning Sign Point where Craig was able to catch our fourth keeper of the day on the black & blue Bitsy Bug Jig. This is where we decided to end the day at 12:45pm in the afternoon with four fish for a total weight of 7.05 pounds of fish for the day. One thing to keep in mind is that water flow at the Dam can be critical to your success. I have a saying about Conowingo Lake -at the end of the day you will either leave with a smile on your face or tears in your eyes.

Conowingo lake is very rich in history. Many years ago, two miles upstream from the Conowingo Dam during the Civil War there was a long wooden covered bridge that provided an important link between Maryland and the states north. If you-look very closely you can see in the landscape the points where it was years ago. While we did not have time on this trip to fish this spot on the Maryland, Harford County side. if you use you your depth finder and look closely you can find some of the old bridge pilings leading out from the shore. I have fished this spot in the past and had very good success.

The launch site for this trip was Glen Cove Marina. They are located one mile off Route 1, in Darlington, MD. The phone number for the marina is (410) 836-3761. You can get a Maryland fishing license and information from Autumn Sky Outfitters, located at 3404 Conowingo Road, (Route 1) phone (410) 836-3660 ask for Gus or Tony. They will be glad to help you enjoy your trip to Conowingo Lake. For water flow information at the Dam you can call (410) 457-4076. There is a recorded message that gives you the projected water flow at the Dam.

I want to caution you especially after storms. The main lake can be very hazardous to run at fast speeds due to log jams and debris floating in the water, and the water can become very rough on windy days. During the summer weekends there can be a considerable amount of boat traffic. Please use courteous and safe-boater/seamanship skills on the water.


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