Central Virginia

by Chris McCotter

   Brian “Razor” Bodine of Razorback Guide service says fish early, fish late, fish up, fish down – but just get out there and fish! The Upper James provides some of the best smallmouth bass fishing in the east and maybe… the country.  Bodine, has been fishing the James for the last 30+ years so he’s one to know!  

  Fishing between the Rockfish and Hardware River tributaries, this stretch produces citation smallmouth (5 lbs. or 20 inches) year ‘round. When the bite is on, 50 to 100 fish days are not unheard of.  

  Razor can be found fishing this stretch of the James throughout the year and can provide you with the local knowledge to get you on the fish and increase your chances of landing your own trophy smallmouth. Soft plastic jerkbaits and tubes are the lures of choice.  When the sun dips in the sky your angling adventures are far from over.  Fish with both live and cut bait, focusing on the flats near mouths of creeks and you should hook up with some nice keeper-sized cats.

   Razor has a pretty neat offering called the Businessman’s Special.  The days are longer so you can work a full day (or close to it), and head on out and fish with your guide until dark.  You’ll be out in the cool of the day, you won’t get burned to a crisp and you’ll be on the water for that awesome evening bite.  Call today to get your day reserved then phone a friend to enjoy the experience with you.

   Are you heading to a reservoir to escape summer crowds? There are serveral around Charlottesville and Culpeper. Topwater offerings will now draw strikes – especially in the early hours and around sunset. As the water warms you will find them in the brushpiles where they bite Carolina and Texas rigged worms.  Drop shotting is effective this time of year, too.  

   Pan fishing is a favorite past time in our region and also allows for some fun fish frys!  If you have friends or neighbors with private ponds then now is a good time to bring them some cookies, a homemade pie or a bottle of their favorite libation. It’s prime time for fly fishing bream beds. 

  We love to cut them up into bite-sized pieces and deep fry them in peanut oil.  Serve with slaw, corn bread and some good old fashioned sweet tea for a southern style meal. 

  If rainy days are quashing your fishing plans it’s not a bad idea to use that time to go through all of your hunting gear because, after all, the season is right around the corner!  Inspect your clothing to see if any repairs should be made or if it’s time to toss and start thinking about replacement.  If you’ll need ammo or your bow or gun could use some love then beat the rush and get your weapons into a smith soon.  When opening day rolls around you’ll be ahead of the game and ready to hit the woods.

  Jim Starkey, owner of James River Jets has been busy customizing boats for his customers.  There is no craft better suited for the mighty James than a Rhino boat.  They are super tough and the sky is the limit when it comes to customizing it to your exact liking.  Call James River Jets today and you’ll see just how versatile and durable these rigs are.

  June is also the month to get out in a kayak and experience rivers and lakes like you never have before. Lake Anna Outfitters, located at High Point Marina, sells Feel Free kayaks that are rigged for fishing and ready to drop in the water.  There are paddle and pedal drives. The Moken 10 V2 PDL boat is a great value at under $1,500.  They make excellent Father’s Day gifts! 

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