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Chesapeake Bay, virginia


North America’s largest estuary hosts the continent’s greatest diversity of sportfish. From southern species like redfish and trout to northern favorites striped bass and flounder, nearly every species of East Coast sportfish calls Chesapeake Bay home. And paddle-fishing filmmaker "Kayak" Kevin Whit- ley (www.kayakkevin.com) chases all of them. In the spring you’ll find Whit- ley stalking the Eastern Shore islands sight-casting big swimbaits to bull reds and cow striper. During the summer, the Ocean Kayak pro focuses on sheepshead, spadefish and cobia hiding in the 5,000 pilings supporting the 17-mile-long Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel (CBBT). During fall, he stalks the backwaters of Hampton Roads, Lynnhaven River and Owl Creek for sea trout and redfish. Whitley stays busy during winter chasing tautog on the rocks and pilings of the CBBT. Each backwater spot has a public launch facility. To fish the CBBT, launch at the end of Lauderdale Avenue at the southern end of the bridge. Terminal tackle goes from bottom rigs for tog and sheepshead to jigs and plugs for reds and trout. Big reds look for a big swimbait and cobia want a big bucktail. All that action doesn’t leave Whitley much time for land-based activities. Anglers who are looking for other attrac- tions will find plenty to do surrounding Virginia Beach’s resort strip. Or hang out in Norfolk’s trendy Ghent neighborhood and catch an independent film at the Naro Expanded Cinema.


kings county, New Brunswick,Ca


Local: Joe Tilley www.nbkayakfishing.ca


Target: Sturgeon Season: Fall through ice-up


Launch: Darlings Island Covered Bridge Tactic: Soaking night crawlers


Tackle: Seven-foot, heavy- action baitcasting combo. A sinker on a slider, three feet of leader and three hooks.


Tips: Hold your rod to feel the sturgeon’s light bite.


Don’t miss: See the Reversing Falls created by the extreme tides in Bay of Fundy. Paddle if you dare.


Eat: The Barrels Head for micro brews and local lore. www.thebarrelshead.com.


Stay: Shadow Lawn Inn is a restored mansion close to the fishing. www.shadowlawn- inn.com.


Chesapeake Bay, Maryland


Some of the country’s best fishing is in the middle of its biggest cities. Chesapeake Bay runs past Baltimore and Washington D.C. where millions of people have easy access to striped bass, flounder and bluefish in the salt and bass, crappie and perch on the fresh side. Captain Chris Dollar (www. cdollaroutdoors.com) runs a kayak shop and offers guided trips a short drive from the metropolis. Queen Anne County, on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, is studded with great kayak launches. “Play the wind to choose where to launch,” Dollar recommends. Anglers can fish year-round, but fall is best for fast action on migrating striped bass. Dollar works marsh points at first light then moves to oyster humps as the sun comes up. He chooses lures and flies that imitate silversides or small menhaden. In between fishing sessions, be sure to check out old port towns St. Michaels and Annapolis. You’ll find homegrown seafood and a trendy vibe with a history lesson thrown in.


Susquehanna River, Pennsylvania


Lewes, Delaware


Located at the intersection of Delaware Bay and the Atlantic Ocean, Lewes has been a fishing town since the first settlers arrived. Joe Hosler, a member of Delaware Paddlesports Fishing Team (www.delawareyakfish.wordpress.com) fishes the fertile waters for striped bass, flounder and black drum. Big striped bass lurk off Augustine Beach. Ho- sler focuses his attention on soaking bunker chunks on the deep drop south of Reedy Island Jetty. For flounder, he drifts a high-low rig baited with scented soft-plastics through the shallows around Cape Henlo- pen State Park pier and the Lewes Canal. Fishing is best in the spring and late summer before the fish move to deeper water. Black drum offer a real challenge. These behemoths can grow to 80 pounds of muscle and fish slime. Hosler chunks sea clams in the deep sloughs and oyster bars off Broadkill and Slaughter Beach. For a real hoot, visit Lewes Harbor Bait and Tackle (www. lewesharbormarina.com) and listen to old fishermen tell lies.


Local: Juan Verunte www.kayakfishpa.com


Target: Smallmouth bass


Season: Year-round, but closed during the spawn (May through mid-June). www.fishandboat.com.


Launch: Middle Section of the Susquehanna River


Tactic: Fish around major ledge systems where bait tries to hide from bass.


Tackle: Medium-action spinning rod rated 1/8 to 1/4 ounce for jigs. Baitcasting combo to throw 1/4 to 1/2 ounce spinnerbaits.


Tip: Get up-to-minute reports on river conditions at Blue Mountain Outfitters in Marys- ville, PA. www.bluemountain- outfitters.net.


Don’t Miss: Fall colors on the river. Great time to catch big smallies, too.


Stay: Ferryboat Campground offers campsites and RV hook- ups right on the river. www. ferryboatcampsites.com.


Eat: The Marysville All Ameri- can Diner is an area favorite. The old-fashioned meatloaf and mashed potatoes hits the spot.


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PHOTO: JUAN VERUNTE


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