by Chris McCotter

  Ed Allen’s Boats & Baits on Chickahominy Lake reported that the lake level was down slightly, clear and in the lower 70’s at the Woods & Waters deadline – just about right for this time of year. Largemouth bass were spawning, crappie had spawned and sunfish were getting ready to spawn. Here’s what you can expect for a May visit.

   Most of the lake’s bass will be post-spawn but you might come upon some still bedding on the May 5 full moon. 

  Keep in mind this is a tannin-stained lake so it’s difficult to see beds. You’ll need to look for the light-colored sandy spots. Pitching Texas-rigged four-inch lizards or 1/8-ounce jigs is good if you can sight fish. Otherwise you’ll need to fish wacky-rigged Senkos or Neko rigs in spawning shallows. 

   Post spawn fish guarding fry are suseptible to wacky-rigged worms and soft plastic jerkbiats. Some topwater action might be had on buzzbaits and poppers in the mornings.

  By the end of the month, the topwater bite will really get going as spawning river herring will often enter the lake and the bass are ready to gorge on them. You’ll want to fish Johnson and Lacy Creeks as well as the coves and small creeks within a mile or so of the dam.

  Bluegill and shellcracker will be spawning heavily on the new and full moon this month. Crickets and fly rod poppers are great fun.

        Ed Allen’s has  200’ long fishing pier, a fleet of jon boats and motors to rent, three rental pontoons and a great tackle shop. They are also a Tohatsu outboard dealer.

   Up at Eagles Landing on the upper end of the lake Jill O’Brien-Jones invites you to visit her this season. The upper end of the lake features plenty of cypress knees and weedy shallows for you to explore this spring in your own boat or one of their rentals. The tackle selection is huge here including Senkos and plenty of topwater frogs.

  Walker’s Dam separates the lake from Chickahominy River. There is a lock but it’s not operable and it’s just easier to launch at a river ramp like the newly refurbished one at Rockahock Campground. Anglers and their families can rent Rockahock’s cabins, villas or yurts and be on the water at first light and enjoying Williamsburg attractions within a 15-minute drive. 

  The Bruce family invites you to visit Riverside Camp & Marina, a few miles below Walker’s Dam. Here you’ll find a quiet riverside campground with cabins and cottages for rent (one waterfront cottage with two bedrooms, kitchen and bath), RV spots, rental jon boats and rental pontoon boats, a tackle shop and great access to the upper Chickahominy River. 

   May is when the bass often spawn on the river. Lily pads and cypress trees in the upper end of the river draw bedding bass. You’ll want to target river bass around the pads and cypress knees using a Senko or creature bait.

  The lower end of the river offers plenty of larger creeks like Diascund, Yarmouth and Gordon’s with their own healthy bass populations. By the end of the month, you’ll want to be throwing a topwater frog and a Chatterbait.

  Adam’s Sports Mart in nearby Providence Forge is what many folks come to first when they exit Interstate 64 on the way to fisheries in the region. This shop welcomes anglers with food, drinks, live bait and newly renovated tackleshop in the back room.

    Fishing Pro Tech in nearby Toano attracts anglers from all over the region due to the diverse selection of bass tackle they carry. Fishing Pro Tech is the state headquarters for big glide and swimbaits and other hot tackle including the new Megabass Sleeper Craw AND the new Yamamoto Yamatanuki. 

    Neraby Toano General Gun Store busy, sells and trades new and used firearms and offers full gunsmithing services in the shop provided by Sodan Armament. The have been doing very well with all their personal protection handguns. 

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