...

Snakehead Fishing – Chopawamsic Bay (VA)

Despite knowing the snakeheads would not come back into the shallow water this early, it was too nice a day to resist dumping the canoe into the water. The Basswife was getting antsy about going fishing and was as dedicated to the idea of catching a snakehead (she doesn’t know what they look like yet) as I was. Therefore, a recon of Chopawamsic Creek where it joins the Potomac was in order. I knew the shoreline would be unproductive based on my earlier attempt but was optimistic the canoe would be the silver bullet.

This early in the year, the thick cover of lily pads had not become oppressive. They had not started growing. This provided us a good view across the surrounding water and allowed us to narrow the aperture of our search. As a result of a conversation with a few guys on the bank who told optimistic stories of massive snakehead catches, we decided to motor up to the creek’s headwaters. This turned out to be a bad idea. Although the water was shallow and muddy the farther upstream, we went, it did not make for good fishing. In effect, the only one who could cast was the person in the front of the canoe. Since that was the Basswife, that was fine with me as I wanted to put her onto some good fish. But, as the water became shallower, the whole idea of moving any farther inland looked worse and worse. Finally, I turned the canoe around and decided to head into the broader portion of the bay.

As you can see from the map, we moved to the south and it immediately presented better structure. I saw some surface action, but we were not able to produce any hookups. The water looks like ideal snakehead habitat – shallow and muddy with plenty of emerging cover as the lilies sat just below the surface, waiting to grow with abandon. We threw buzzbaits, chatterbaits as well as some jerkbaits and even a few grubs on a two hook Alabama rig with no results.

Based on reports I have seen from other folks on YouTube and elsewhere on the Internet, I know this has to be productive for snakeheads. I’ll have to return here once the water warms up a bit and there is a better guarantee that the snakeheads have moved into their pre-spawn habitat.

Google Local Coordinates: 38.514707,-77.334744

Getting There: From I95, take exit 148 towards Quantico. Turn east at the end of the exit and follow Russell Road onto the Quantico MC. If you do not have a military ID, you will have to show a government-issued ID. About 2 miles from I95, you will see a small sign for a “wildlife viewing area” on your right. Turn onto the dirt road for the viewing area and it will lead to a small parking area where there is an unimproved launch. It might be sporty to get a trailer in here – I believe it is just for kayaks and canoes.

Secrets Revealed? Snakeheads… who cares?

Tell a friend about this article by clicking on this link

Date Fished: 4/4/2012

Unless stated otherwise, this article was authored by Steve Moore

Articles on this site are out of date since some go back to 2006. Regulations and property ownership may have changed since publication. It is your responsibility to know and obey all regulations and not trespass on private property.

Disclaimer and Warning:  The contents of this site reflect the opinion of the author and you, the reader, must exercise care in the use and interpretation of this information.  Fishing is a dangerous sport.  You can slip and fall on rocks and sustain severe injury.  You can drown.  You can get hooks caught in your skin, face, eyes or other sensitive places.  All sorts of bad things can happen to you when to go into the woods to visit the places documented here.  Forests, streams and lakes are wild areas and any number of bad things can happen.  You must make your own judgment in terms of acceptable behavior and risk and not rely on anything posted here.  I disclaim all liability and responsibility for any actions you take as a result of reading the articles on this site.  If you do not agree with this, you should not read anything posted on this site.

Disclaimer and Warning:  The contents of this site reflect the opinion of the author and you, the reader, must exercise care in the use and interpretation of this information.  Fishing is a dangerous sport.  You can slip and fall on rocks and sustain severe injury.  You can drown.  You can get hooks caught in your skin, face, eyes or other sensitive places.  All sorts of bad things can happen to you when to go into the woods to visit the places documented here.  Forests, streams and lakes are wild areas and any number of bad things can happen.  You must make your own judgment in terms of acceptable behavior and risk and not rely on anything posted here.  I disclaim all liability and responsibility for any actions you take as a result of reading the articles on this site.  If you do not agree with this, you should not read anything posted on this site.

Scroll to Top