Thursday, November 13, 2008

Virginia loses a great outdoorsman and friend. God Bless you Stuart and happy hunting and fishing in Paradise

Stuart Warren Wood

WOOD, Stuart Warren, 59, of Richmond, died Tuesday, November 11, 2008. He was preceded in death by his parents, Harold and Barbara Wood of Mechanicsville; son, Hilton Wood of Richmond; and sister, Patsy Kiiffner of Chesterfield. He is survived by his wife of 28 years, Bonnie E. Wood; son, Alex Wood Hansen (Renee); sister, Joan Bennett (Ronnie); two grandchildren, Summer and Austin. He is also survived by many other family members and friends. Stuart was the owner and CEO of Lake-N-Woods Taxidermy. He was an avid fisherman and hunter and a longtime member of Bump-A-Stump Bass Club. He served as Region 3 Director of Virginia Bass Federation, Treasurer of Virginia Sportsman Reward Fund and President of Concerned Bass Anglers of Virginia (CBAV). The family will receive friends 4 to 8 p.m. Friday at Bliley's - Central Chapel, 3801 Augusta Ave., and where a memorial service will be held 2 p.m. Saturday. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to the American Heart Association or to a charity of your choice.

Friday, October 10, 2008

No-Net-Loss: Ensuring Future Generations A Place To Hunt

No-Net-Loss: Ensuring Future Generations A Place To Hunt

If there is one thing that threatens the future of hunting more than any other, it is the challenge of finding a place to hunt. More and more hunting land is being lost, either through development or because of restrictive regulations that preclude its use. Concerned hunters working together with NRA-ILA have found a solution: protect our public hunting lands with No-Net-Loss laws.

Simply put, No-Net-Loss requires that states maintain at least the level of available public hunting land that currently exists. It requires that additional lands be opened to hunting if land that is currently open to hunting is closed. The end result is to assure hunters that the opportunities they now have will not diminish.

No-Net-Loss laws have been enacted in Illinois, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, West Virginia and Georgia, and NRA-ILA is actively pursuing similar legislation in Kansas.

But states are only part of the problem, and offer only part of the solution. The federal government administers millions of acres of public land. Much of this land has traditionally been open to hunting. In order to keep those lands open to sportsmen, Senators Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Ted Stevens (R-AK), Richard Burr (R-NC), James Inhofe (R-OK), John Sunnunu (R-NH) and Jim Bunning R-KY) have introduced the Hunting Heritage Protection Act (S. 408) to apply the No-Net-Loss policy to all federally administered land. Passage of S. 408 would mean that the amount of BLM, Forest Service, Wildlife Refuge and National Parks land that is now available for hunters will not diminish. NRA-ILA is pursuing similar legislation in the House of Representatives.

Important Points About No-Net-Loss

  • The goal of No-Net-Loss is to create a base line number of public hunting acres that are always open to hunting, guaranteeing that future generations have the same hunting opportunities that we enjoy today. By preserving America's public hunting lands, we will allow people to continue to enjoy our sporting heritage.
  • The legislation in no way infringes on private property rights, or on the ability of local governments to manage their own lands. It applies only to publicly owned lands.
  • Hunters are the foremost conservationists in America. By preserving hunting we are ensuring that hunters will continue to protect wildlife and the environment. Through license fees, hunters pay for 75% of the budget of state wildlife agencies. Without hunters there would be no agencies, and without the agencies wildlife would be unprotected.
  • Taxes collected from hunters provide half a billion dollars annually to the preservation and expansion of wildlife habitat. In the last 67 years, hunters have contributed $9.5 billion to wildlife conservation. Without these funds America's wildlife could not survive.
  • Hunters contribute $67 billion to the economy each year. Without that money, many rural economies would wither and die. Expenditures by hunters support 575,000 jobs around the country. The federal income tax generated by hunting related activities could pay the salary of 100,000 members of the U.S. armed forces. Protecting public hunting land protects this important part of our economy.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

From Tommy S. at Nelson County Life, thanks Tommy!

Also had a question Monday sent in by NCL web reader Nancy Maxson about the Perseid meteor showers:

“Hi Tommy!
Say, when’s the best time to view the coming Perseid shower this year?
I’ve heard anywhere from 9 pm to not before 3 am.
And what’s the weather forecast for viewing, cloudy or worth the trip up to
the parkway? Thanks and enjoy!

Stefan Seip took this picture over Riedseltz, France. The image shows the Milky Way in the Cepheus and Summer Triangle region. It shows also 6 Perseids and one Non-Perseid meteor. August 12/13, 2005 22:32 - 1:28 UT. Camera: Canon EOS 20Da, tracking the stars. Lens: Canon EF-S 10-22mm @ 11mm f/4 ISO 1600. Exposure time for the background: 10x 2 minutes. Credit: Stefan Seip. Courtesy

Well, Nancy with a little research here’s what I have found out from an article on last night:

“The best time to watch, regardless of your location, is from 2 a.m. to dawn local time, but the best seats will be in the western half of North America where dark skies coincide with the peak activity.

The Perseids get their name from the constellation Perseus, from which they tend to emanate like spokes from the hub of a wheel. The meteors can make their appearance anywhere in the sky, however.”

The absolute peak was this morning on the 12th, but don’t let that disappoint you, there’s still some mornings left to view the showers that will continue over the next several early mornings.

The BRP is a great location to view from because you get away from any light noise, but if you have a rural location away from lights here in the valley, you should still be in great shape! The weather for the next couple of nights should be very good for viewing!

Good luck Nancy, and thanks for the question!

97 lb rattlesnake?

This snake was recently found at the old
Wendover Military Base in Wendover Utah Tooele County.

A reminder that these creatures are actually out there and no matter
what you believe, sometimes they should get not only prescriptive
rights to be there but the full right of way!

9 feet, 1 inch - 97 lbs.

No matter what anybody else tells you, kill the snake before you try to do anything else to it!
It's the safest way for you and the snake doesn't care anymore.


1 medium-sized rattlesnake (3-4 lbs.), cut into steaks
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup cracker crumbs
1/2 cup milk
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder (not garlic salt)
1 teaspoon salt
dash pepper

Mix dry ingredients. Whisk milk into beaten egg and use to dip snake steaks.
Then coat them with dry ingredients. Fry, uncovered, in 400 degree oil until brown.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Tear Drop camper trailers

With the price of fuel so high, it's a little pricey to go off for the weekend in the 4x4 and big truck camper.

So maybe with a little sweat and blood I can build a portable sleeper that I can pull behind the TDI VW. Save fuel and still have a great weekend in the boonies.

Here are some great websites on the topic if your interested.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Send in your documents and photos


Do you have an old photo, document etc. that pertains to the history of either the VPSA or the Virginia Big Game Contest that you would like to share with viewer of this web site? If so, email them to the webmaster and we will place them here on our next update. All material on this page are copyrighted and require written permission from VPSA to copy or duplicate.

2 more great articles from Bill Cochran

Apprentice License

Health and Status of Sport Fishing


>>Lack of rain has prompted officials of the Appalachian Power Co. to decrease downstream releases from Smith Mountain and Leesville lakes in an effort to raise the declining water level in Smith Mountain Lake. The decreased releases don’t always sit well with downstream interests, who say they also need water. This will be the subject of a public hearing tonight, 6 p.m. at Gretna High School.

>>State fish officials say all those dire predictions about the damage the snakehead fish would do may have been overstated. The fish is an Asian import found in the Potomac River. A Virginian-Pilot article quotes a biologist who says the fish appears to have found its own niche and is not harming bass and other native species. Reports that the snakehead could “walk” on land were false. Even so, fishermen are instructed to kill the snakeheads they catch.

>>Capt. Ferrell McLain, a Chesapeake Bay charter boat operator, said the Bay is enjoying the best run of Spanish mackerel in years. However, few people are renting charters to go after them. “Spanish mackerel to 24 inches have been caught around the Northern Neck Reef and Buoy 62 area,” McLain said. The preferred method is to troll for them with small spoons. Bluefish in the 3-5 pound ranges also are being caught. The area west of Tangier Island a good place to try for blues.

>>Angler Dr. Julie Ball of Virginia Beach used a fly rod to catch four spadefish she believes would qualify for world record status. She is a representative of the International Game Fish Association, the keeper of records. Ball was using flies tied for spadefish by Crab Creek Outfitters. I’m “not sure what they are supposed to look like, but the spades were very interested,” she said. She kept her two largest fish for certification purposes.

>>More than 271,000 pines are scheduled to be planted by the National Wild Turkey Federation on 678 acres surrounding Fort Stewart, Ga., part of a longleaf pine restoration program

>>State fish officials have been investigating a die-off of gizzard shad in South Fork Rivanna Reservoir near Charlottesville. The fish were found around the bottom of the dam and their death was blamed on hot weather and low water conditions that decreased oxygen in the impoundment.



There are new leaders in the king mackerel and sheepshead categories of the Virginia Saltwater Fishing Tournament. Here are the standings:

BLACK DRUM: 87 pounds, 3 ounces, Paul Elliott, Surry, Latimer Shoals (C-2 Buoy).

BLUEFISH: 19 pounds, 4 ounces, Richard Brown, Richmond, off Virginia Beach.

BLUEFIN TILEFISH: 18 pounds, 14 ounces, Chris Boyce, Hampton, Norfolk Canyon.

COBIA: 90 pounds, 10 ounces, Charles Thain, Birdsnest, Inner Middle Ground, C-13.

CROAKER: 4 pounds, Glen Ford, Newport News, James River.

DOLPHIN: 58 pounds, 6 ounces, Burt Whitt, Norfolk, Cigar.

FLOUNDER: 11 pounds, Rudolph Levasseur, Chesapeake, Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel.

GRAY TRIGERFISH: 4 pounds, 2 ounces, Adam Lyons, Chesapeake, Seagull Pier on Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel.

GRAY TROUT: 9 pounds, 8 ounces, Joseph Hudgins, Jr., Chesapeake, Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel (4th island).

KING MACKEREL, 62 pounds, 3 ounces, James McDonald, Virginia Beach, Sandbridge Pier.

KINGFISH: 2 pounds, 3 ounces, Bill Pope, Norfolk, Sandbridge surf.

SEA BASS: 7 pounds, 8 ounces, Reggie Myrick, Portsmouth, wreck off Virginia Beach.

SHEEPSHEAD: 14 pounds, 5 ounces, Kay Alley, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel. .

SPADEFISH: 13 pounds, 15 ounces, Donald Knight, Chesterfield, Wolf Trap Light.

SPANISH MACKEREL: 6 pounds, Alfred Simpson, Virginia Beach, Sandbridge pier.

SPECKLED TROUT: 9 pounds, 15 ounces, David Hester, Chesapeake, Elizabeth River.

STRIPED BASS: 73 pounds, state record, Frederick Barnes, Chesapeake, off Virginia Beach.

TAUTOG: 20 pounds, 6 ounces, Michael Shreve, Glen Burnie, Md., Monroe Wreck.

TUNA, BLUEFIN: 226 pounds, Kim Schwallenberg, Edgewater, Md., off Wachapreague.

TUNA: 89 pounds, Troy Holtry, Newburg, Pa., 20 Fathom Finger.

WAHOO: 68 pounds, Ron Fair, Cheriton, off Wachapreague.


Virginia Outdoor Sportsman Show, Aug. 8-10, ShowPlace, 3000 Mechanicsville Turnpike, Richmond, features Larry Weishuhn, the NRA trophy deer display and nearly 300 exhibitors. Adult tickets $10 per day or $15 for the weekend, kids under 15 can enter free with a paying adult. Information from

Triangle Archer’s 3D tournament, Aug. 17, Blacksburg, fee $12 or $25 per family, information from Triangle Archers 3D tournament, June 22, Blacksburg, fee $12 or $25 per family, information from James Overfelt.

Outdoor Sportsmen’s Classic, Aug. 22-23, Salem Civic Center.

Smith Mountain Lake Striper Club Fishermen’s Flea Market/Swap Shop, Sept. 5, 7 p.m., Moneta Community Center.

Eastern Regional Big Game Championship, Sept. 13 and 14, Southampton County Fairgrounds, Franklin, sponsored by the Virginia Peninsula Sportsmen’s Association, more information from Kenneth Pickin, P.O. Box 1860, Williamsburg, Va. 23187-1860; 757-229-0490. This is the contest for deer, bear and turkey killed east of the Blue Ridge. Additional information from

Triangle Archer’s 3D tournament, Sept 14, Blacksburg, fee $12 or $25 per family, information from James Overfelt.

Third annual WSLS 10 Hunters for the Hungry banquet, 6 p.m. Sept. 27, Dave Sarmadi Mitsubishi, Salem, tickets $20 singles; $35 couples, kids 12 and under free, to benefit the organization’s feed-the-needy program, tickets from Jeff Fletcher, 540-985-6523 or Fred and Phyllis Wells, 540-992-3874 or may be purchased at Dave Sarmadi Mitsubishi, additional information from

Western Regional and State Big Game Championship, for deer, bear and turkey killed west of the Blue Ridge or advanced from the Eastern Championship, Sept. 27 & 28, Rockingham County Fairgrounds, Harrisonburg, more information from Jon Ritenour, 2041 Spaders Church Road, Harrisonburg, Va. 22801, 540-434-8028. Additional information from

Fall Optimist Club of Cave Springs Fishing Tournament, Oct. 3-5, Smith Mountain Lake.

Saltwater striped bass tournament opens Oct. 4.

Roanoke Valley Friends of NRA banquet, Oct. 18.

Got an event? Let us know:

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

They're here

Fire ants invade Va. public parks

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) -- Fire ants have invaded at least eight public parks in the South Hampton Roads area.

State officials say the ants are being transported from southern states in uninspected and untreated shipments of plants, soil and mulch, either illegally or unintentionally.

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services says most of the affected parks are in Virginia Beach.

Greenbrier Sports Park in Chesapeake, and Buckner Farms, City View, Hillcrest Farms, Mount Trashmore, Newlight, Pine Ridge and Rosemont Forest parks in Virginia Beach have been treated with insecticide in an attempt to eliminate the pests.

Fire ants are aggressive, swarming insects known for their venomous attacks on animals and humans.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Virginia Outdoor Sportsman Show

Larry Weishuhn
Friday 7pm, Saturday 2pm and Sunday 1pm

What a gorgeous day in Shenandoah Nat'l Park!

Temp in the low 60's at 9 am high around 74 for the day. Clear sunny skies and an abundance of wildlife to view along with a few nice people, but not too many. Not bad for August!

A great day to be alive!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Tarpon on the seaside of Virginias Eastern Shore

One of this week's biggest developments was the catching and releasing of two tarpon on the same boat with charter skipper Capt. W.T Nottingham of Picketts Harbor Charters (757-3312-4552).

The leaping, silvery fish of Florida fame were pulled from Seaside back-country waters by Curt Caplinger of Mechanicsville, VA, and Edward Brown Jr. of Aydlett, VA.

From hutch's fishing report

Friday, July 18, 2008

Mountain Lions

Could the DGIF or U.S. Forest Service have brought them in?

I often wonder: if there are mountain lions in Craig County,and other Virginia counties, why haven’t bear hunters treed them? Craig has truckloads of bear hounds and bear hunters.

“Bear hunters have told me that they tree them and they worry that their hunting will be messed with if they report what it is,” said Horn. So they keep quiet when it comes to dealing with this protected animal.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Best Crabs in VA

Crab Shack

5098 Richmond Tappahannock Hwy
Aylett, VA 23009 Map (7.64 miles)

  • (804) 769-3315

Friday, July 11, 2008

Cherrystone Family Camping Resort


Cherrystone Family Camping Resort will update this fishing report weekly through mid-October, later if conditions warrant. It is compiled by Bob Hutchinson, seasonal camper site #143. Hutch is the retired outdoors editor for hunting and fishing for The (Norfolk) Virginian-Pilot. Find out the latest on fishing at Cherrystone.


Diversity remains the operable word for anglers fishing out of Cherrystone Family Camping Resort. This week's catches in waters of the lower Chesapeake Bay have included gray trout (weakfish), flounder (fluke), cobia, bluefish, sheepshead, spot, croaker and kingfish.

In fact, young Justin Baranek of Hampton, NJ, earned a citation award from the free Virginia Saltwater Fishing Tournament when he caught and released a 13.75-inch kingfish from the head boat Miss Jennifer.

The kingfish is a creature of many names. It is also known as sea mullet, sand mullet, roundhead and whiting. And it makes excellent table fare, the meat white, flaky and succulent.

As usual, croaker make up the biggest catch for anglers sailing from the camping resort, according to Capt. Ray Cardone, skipper of the Miss Jennifer. "But we're also getting a few keeper trout and flounder," he said.

The hottest Chesapeake Bay croaker action remains north of Cherrystone. The good thing about that is the fish should soon be migrating south into this area, especially if history holds.

Croaker also are being taken in good numbers out of the Seaside (oceanside) village of Oyster, 4.5 miles east of Cherrystone Family Camping Resort. There the better hauls are being made on falling tides.

Flounder are available along both sides (Bayside and Seaside) of the lower Eastern Shore. But anglers are finding it tough to fill the state's new limits of five fish measuring at least 19 inches.

And remember, the Virginia season will be completely closed July 23-28.

Anyway, Bayside waters have produced some bragging-size flatfish in the past few days. Randy Diamond of nearby Machipongo, VA, earned a citation award with a 7-pound, 7-ounce catch, while Howard Garringer of Easton, PA, scored at 7-3. Both fish were registered at Chris Bait & Tackle.

While cobia have been scarce, Robert Fortner of King George, VA, decked a citation-winning 68-pounder. And waters of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel producted an award-winning 12-1 sheepshead for Mike Ragland of Quinton, VA.

While a few tarpon (yep, those of Florida fame) have been spotted in the Seaside back country, no reports yet of landings or even hook-ups. This fishery peaks during the hottest days of July and August.

Finally, although blue crabs are not as abundant as one might like in the shallow waters around Cherrystone Family Camping Resort, most experienced crabbers are getting enough for occasional crab feasts.

And the good news in this area is that the crabs are big and full of the indescribably sweet meat.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

VMRC fishing report

The Fishing Reports

Chincoteague -

Donna at Captain Bobs reports fishing has been great for the past few days. The weather has been just about perfect with minimal winds, low temperatures, and the tides falling at the right time of day. While the throwback ratio is rising, keeper flounder are still being landed by boaters in front in Tom’s Cove, and off of the piers. Queen’s Sound and Cockle Creek have also been productive, with anglers catching there limits of keepers in relatively short time spans. Kingfish are keeping anglers busy at Markers 15 and 16, with croaker mixed in. Staff is still waiting for the big numbers of croaker to arrive. Small weakfish are arriving, and small spot have been caught. Shark and skate are also providing action for anglers in the area. Offshore fishing is hot! The 20-Fathom line (around the Lumpy Bottom and the Parking Lot) is producing bluefin tuna, and trolling has been best method to bring them up. Other offshore catches include mahi-mahi, cobia, king mackerel, spadefish, sheepshead and tautog at the wrecks.

Wachapreague -

At Captain Zed’s, the MARLIN MAGIC came in with a 102-pound bluefin tuna and two small dolphin on the 28th. Anglers have been catching kingfish, grey trout, and a keeper flounder (the throwback ratio is 30- 40 undersized flounder to one keeper). Staff reports the price of gasoline is keeping many anglers home.

Onancock -

In Onancock, medium and large croaker are being hooked at the mouth of the Pocomoke Sound, and few flounder are still being hooked. Anglers can catch spot with bloodworms, and nice sea mullet have been found in the area. Sharks are beginning to show, and Captain Wil expects more to show up by the middle of July. During hot times of day, anglers should fish in deeper waters, and during evenings, in the shallows. Nice fishing and good weather should make a great holiday weekend.

Cape Charles -

Chris at Chris’ Bait and Tackle reports a drop in citations this week. Flounder are still being reported from the Cell area, and spadefish have been brought in from the same area and the 3rd and 4th islands of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. Croaker have arrived at Oyster, and anglers are coming home with full coolers. There is a mixed bag of bottom fish available off of the Kiptopeke Pier including croaker, spot, and a few small grey trout.

Flounder have been caught near Cherrystone Bait and Tackle. Anglers have found success fishing at low tide around Kings Creek. Croaker, grey trout, and white perch have also been hooked in the area.

Lower Bay/Bridge Tunnel

No citations were reported from Cobb’s Marina this week. Anglers have been catching flounder at the ODU wreck, between the 2nd and 3rd islands of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. Spadefish have been landed sporadically in the same area. While none have been brought in, staff has heard reports of cobia sightings along the bridge as well. Croaker are keeping anglers occupied throughout the area.

At the Sunset Boating Center, anglers have reported numerous small croaker in the area. Spanish mackerel and flounder have been hooked near Cape Henry.

Massive cobia, flounder, and numerous citations were reported from Salt Pond’s Marina this week. A 78- pound, 6-ounce cobia was landed from the MISS SUSIE at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel on the 25th, following a 57-pound, 60-inch cobia landed from the same area on the 24th. Two flounder citations came in from the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel on the 26th, (8 pounds, 29 inches and 7 pounds, 4 ounces, 27 inches), and on the 27th , two red drum release citations, both 47 inches, were brought in from the same area. Staff at York River Fishing Center reports that flounder has really picked up in the area. Many are able to find their limits of keepers. Anglers are also catching some cobia in the area. Spot and Croaker can be found in the river and off of Gloucester Point Pier where the occasional flounder is hooked as well. Spanish mackerel are biting at the mouth of the York River.

Ken Neill, reporting secretary for the Peninsula Anglers Club, contributed the following:

The long Independence Day weekend arrives with numerous species to target. Bluefin tuna are being caught on the inshore lumps like the Hot Dog and 26-Mile Hill. They are also being caught on the Fingers along with dolphin, king mackerel and some yellowfin tuna. Dolphin and marlin are available in the area southeast of the Cigar. Tilefish and grouper are being caught by bottom bouncers in the area of the Norfolk Canyon. Black sea bass, some tautog, and triggerfish are biting on the inshore wrecks. Some of these same wrecks like the Gulf Hustler, Ricks, and Hanks, are good locations to encounter some big amberjack. The Chesapeake Light Tower is another amberjack spot but for a sure bet, make the long run down to the South Towers. Spadefish can be caught on these and other wrecks, at the Tower Reef, the Chesapeake Light Tower, the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, and at the Cell. Black drum are a possibility around the islands of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, especially at the 2nd and 3rd islands. Large red drum are still being caught by anglers fishing the Inner Middle Ground area at night. Sheepshead are on the pilings of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel with fiddler crabs being a preferred bait. Spanish mackerel are being caught along the oceanfront and in the lower bay up to Windmill Point. Numerous small bluefish are mixed in with the Spanish. Cobia anglers are catching fish while sitting on chum slicks at York Spit, Bluefish Rock, and the Inner Middle Grounds. Some large flounder are at the Cell/Buoy 42 areas but most of the larger fish are being caught at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel and at Back River Reef by anglers fishing with live spot. A few speckled trout are being caught in the rivers of the Mobjack Bay and in the bayside creeks of the Eastern Shore. Croaker are biting everywhere.

Dr. Julie Ball, IGFA International Representative for Virginia Beach, contributed the following:

The Independence Day weekend is not the only event causing fireworks. The saltwater action along the Mid Atlantic coast is also going off. The flounder action is explosive this week, with heavy flounder tipping the scales daily at local tackle shops. Anglers are pounding the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel and other lower bay structures, mostly with live bait and jigs. Live spot is working well near structure, while 2-ounce jig heads adorned with shad-style plastics are a good choice for jigging around the piling bases. Strip baits are also producing some decent fish. Gerald George of Suffolk scored with a 7-pound, 1-ounce doormat near the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel on bluefish strips.

The Spanish mackerel scene is another hot topic. Folks trolling the lower Bay, the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, and the ocean shorelines are finding limits of Spanish mackerel and a smattering of Taylor bluefish. Small silver and gold spoons weighted with in-line sinkers will do the trick in anywhere from 18 to 30 feet of water. King mackerel are next. Anglers continue to report sightings of kings skying and crashing on bait inshore, while small kings are biting trolled baits on the inshore lumps.

Tautog are also back in the picture, with anglers beginning to show some interest. Rob Collins of Norfolk was rewarded for his togging efforts with a nice 11-pound, 4-ounce fish he hooked on a lower bay structure using fiddler crabs. Sheepshead are still not on fire, but more frequent catches along the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel are beginning to show promise. A good showing of triggers in the same area are also keeping things interesting.

Spadefish action is still sketchy most everywhere, with small to medium-sized fish the norm right now. Some bigger spades are lurking around the High Rise span and the 4th island of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, if you can slow them down. This season’s trophy spade catches are behind last year’s entries, with no signs of catching up.

Although red drum are becoming more elusive, a few big reds are still taking baits intended for cobia. Black drum continue to bite around the artificial islands of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, where anglers are hooking an occasional fish while casting grubs and shads. Cobia seem to be taking a break right now, with catches slowing even more this week. Frustrated anglers are reporting fish free swimming on the surface, but refusing any offerings. Chummers are also reporting slow action this week.

Puppy drum are active lately, with the best reports coming from the lower bay inlets and the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel. The Virginia Beach Fishing Center reports that spot showed up within Rudee Inlet, with the average size around ¾ of a pound. Croaker are most everywhere right now, with some fish pushing 1.5 pounds near the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel and the Cell. The flurry of anglers rushing into Oyster is an indication that the hardheads (croaker) made their debut in their back waters, where tarpon sightings should also come soon.

Amberjack are a good bet at the Southern Towers and some offshore wrecks such as the Triangles, and the Ricks and Hanks wrecks. Live bait is working well, while jigs are also a good alternative bait. Deep droppers are finding plenty of nice tilefish, wreckfish, and blackbelly rosefish, which can offer a break during a slow offshore trolling day.

The offshore season is offering some good options. Billfish are making a good showing near the Triple 0’s and the Cigar, where a few sailfish releases and grand slams made for a great week. Although yellowfin tuna are scarce, bluefin tuna ranging from 50 to over 100 pounds are biting on the inshore lumps, with the Hot Dog and 26-Mile Hill providing the best action. Some big gaffer dolphin over 50 pounds are also available. The new state leading mahi was landed this week by Burt Whitt of Norfolk while fishing on the NORFOLK BLUE in 100 fathoms and has a story with a twist. The fish slipped into the water while at the dock, until retrieved by a helpful diver to then land safely on the scales. The final weight of the fish was 58 pounds, 6 ounces.

Virginia Middle Bay -

Smith Point Marina has seen some good action with bluefish lately. Trolling and chumming has produced good numbers. Striped bass are still being caught (although you now have to throw them back in Virginia waters) as well as keeper flounder, croaker and spot.

Locklies Marina has seen good numbers of pan-sized spot. Some keeper flounder, nice-sized croaker, and bluefish around the bridges are being caught as well. Garrett’s Marina reports that croaker and catfish are coming through their area.

Capt. Jim Thompson reports croaker have dropped off to almost a trickle in the middle bay and on the Eastern Shore. It was a very short season for the big croaker this year. Some small croaker remain in hot spots. Cobia were taken at the Range light on the Eastern Shore as well a Red drum. In the Rappahannock, spot are in full swing but are small. The fishing spots include the Spike and in Butlers Hole, where sea mullet and trout could be found. In the Piankatank River, small spot were the main catch. Off of Gwynn’s Island, small to medium-sized croaker could be had, as well as dog shark.

Jerry Thrash, of Queen’s Creek Outfitters, contributed the following:

Medium Spot have started biting at the Spike and at Butlers Hole with small to medium croaker mixed in. Bluefish and Spanish mackerel are available along Windmill Bar. Although there were two citations caught near Buoy 42 this week, flounder fishing at Buoy 42 and in the Cell area has been slow with few keepers. Two other flounder citations came from Cape Charles—a single lucky angler caught both. Spadefish are available at the Cell and at Wolftrap Light. The small fish have shown up a bit early so large fish are harder to catch with all the bait steelers mixed in. We weighed in one citation from the Cell through Sunday. Speckled Trout fishing has slowed.

Virginia Beach -

Staff at the Virginia Beach Fishing Center reports great fishing for the week. The offshore boats are doing great with dolphin, king mackerel, and bluefin tuna ranging from 80 to 100 pounds. The inshore boats are also seeing great catches of spadefish, Spanish mackerel, and bluefish. Head boats are out for black sea bass and croaker. In the inlet, spot are still popular, as is flounder, though there is only a 10 % keeper rate.

Paula at Fisherman's Wharf Marina has seen some good catches of bluefin tuna and king mackerel coming in from 26-Mile Hill. A few gaffer dolphin have been caught in the Norfolk Canyon and in the Cigar area. Inshore, tautog and sheepshead are being hooked at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. Bluefish and Spanish mackerel are also providing good catches. Cobia have been found around the Sandbridge area.

Virginia Piers -

Staff at the Ocean View Pier reports nice fishing during the day, and even better after night fall. Catches include croaker, flounder, Spanish mackerel and bluefish.

Staff at the Lynnhaven Pier has seen nice spot, roundhead, croaker, and flounder. Night anglers are seeing a little bit better fishing than those fishing during the day. Several decent catches have come in over the week.

The Virginia Beach Pier reports catches of striped bass and juvenile red drum, with a few keeper-sized flounder thrown in. Spanish mackerel, roundheads and bluefish continue their presence in the area.

Outer Banks, NC -

Offshore fishing in the Nags Head region has only included a few dolphin, yellowfin tuna and wahoo. The bright side has been the consistency of the billfish bite, which has been moderate to good, and includes blue marlin, white marlin and sailfish. At least one grand slam (catching a blue marlin, white marlin and a sailfish in one trip) was reported out of Pirates Cove Marina. People fishing the mid-range artificial reefs had luck with triggerfish, black sea bass, amberjack and striped bass. Inshore action has also slowed down, and the best production is coming in the early morning hours for speckled trout and red drum. These species are found in their normal summertime haunts, the flats around marsh islands and in the surf. The pier action has been almost exclusively bluefish. Blitzes were likely to come at any moment of the day with Gotcha plugs being the preferred bait. The die-hard bottom fishermen could find a few spot or sea mullet when the wind dirtied up the water.

Offshore fishing out of Oregon Inlet slowed down with the wind from storms and cold fronts keeping a lot of anglers in port. On Saturday, when the weather was better, a good number of sailfish were reported, with a few blue marlin mixed in. A good number of dolphin were found by at least one boat. People trolling the inshore areas were able to catch bluefish and Spanish mackerel.

The surf fishing South of Oregon Inlet has been very slow due to the strong south west winds. Only a few reports came in of sea mullet at ramp 43, black drum at the jetties, and bluefish hitting spoons. Sound side fishing had flounder and bluefish on the menu. Offshore fishing out of Hatteras Inlet was blown out for the weekend.

If you have additional information or would like further details contact Joe Grist at (757) 247-2237.

Please credit the Virginia Marine Resources Commission's THE SALTWATER REVIEW as the source of the fishing information.

Project is funded by NOAA and VMRC.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Hutchs fishing report


Cherrystone Family Camping Resort will update this fishing report weekly through mid-October, later if conditions warrant. It is compiled by Bob Hutchinson, seasonal camper site #143. Hutch is the retired outdoors editor for hunting and fishing for The (Norfolk) Virginian-Pilot. Find out the latest on fishing at Cherrystone.


This week's big news is that croaker have invaded waters of the Chesapeake Bay off Cherrystone Family Camping Resort as well as Seaside (oceanside) waters out of the village of Oyster, VA, 4.5 miles east of Cherrystone.

In fact, catches out of Oyster have been fantastic, with some glutonous anglers hauling their catches away by the coolers-full. Take what you can use but don't waste a valuable resource. You may want to go again.

Croaker fishing is relatively simple. All you need is a two-hook, high-low Chesapeake Bay bottom rig. Use 1/0 long-shank hooks since they are usually easy to remove. Bait the hooks with 1/2-inch by 2-inch strips of good squid.

Either light (10-12-pound-test) spinning on baitcasting outfits will suffice and usejust enough sinker to keep the rig on the bottom. The same rig will also work on gray trout, spot, kingfish, small bluefish and other bottom-feeders.

Croaker will hit a variety of baits, including shrimp, peeler crab, bloodworms and manufactured "Fish Bites," available at Cherrystone Bait and Tackle. I've even caught them steadily on small flies tied with small feathers and bucktail.

Capt. Ray Cardone, who skippers the head boat Miss Jennifer from the docks behind Cherrystone Aqua Farms, reports a mixed bag that includes small gray trout, small bluefish, kingfish and even some flounder.

Of late, the hottest flounder action has been in Seaside waters out of Oyster, more specificly inand around Shop Shoal Inlet, The best Bayside hauls are being made in deep (40-80) feet of water around structure, including wrecks.



Thursday, June 19, 2008

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Support this venture

The Boyscout camp at Bayport Virginia aka Jamaica VA.

I spent most of my childhood in this area and there could not have been a better use found for this property.

Truly a tour of Bayport, this program gives your Scouts a chance to sample the different programs that are offered at our High Adventure Base. The following days/activities are part of the Bayport SamplerProgram:

  1. Waterman Program (Fishing)
  2. Cope & Climbing
  3. Canoeing or Rafting
  4. Equestrian
  5. Small group sailing with a recreational focus

Friday, June 13, 2008

Sabiki rigs and Crappie

Tried a Sabiki rig today for bait fish in a pond and found out they make a super Crappie jig.

I just lightly bounced it up and down near structure holding a big school of Slabs and kept pulling them in. My partner kept asking if I had another rig with me, unfortunately I did not, but will try different sizes and combos in the future.

Go have some fun with a kid and a Sabiki!


Monday, June 9, 2008

Hunting, fishing, and the outdoors are good for kids, who knew?

Ivy League endorses hunting:

Show researchers a young hunter, and they'll show you a future environmentalist. The Cornell study found that children who hunt, fish or play in the wild before age 11 are more likely to grow up with deeper understanding and respect for nature.

Domestic outdoor activities like gardening also positively influence adult environmental attitudes and behaviors, but their effects aren't as strong.

When kids become truly engaged with the natural world at a young age, the experience is likely to stay with them in a powerful way, shaping their environmental path, Cornell researchers say. Interestingly, participating in scouting and other formalized outdoor education programs has no effect on adult attitudes toward the environment.

From the Great Falls Tribune

Great Falls, Montana Sept 06

Monday, June 2, 2008

Virginia's Record fish

Any ideas on molding and casting insects

Update 06-04-08:

We're making progress:

Thanks to Chris Dunnavant at DGIF:

Personal Message (Online)
« Reply #6 on: June 18, 2008, 05:37:48 PM »
Reply with quote Modify message Remove message

I found this but am unsure on how to get it out of the mold.

I could make a mother and then recast with this method I guess. What material should I cast the mother with, metal?

Any thoughts?


This section is from the "Henley's Twentieth Century Formulas Recipes Processes" encyclopedia, by Norman W. Henley and others.
How to Make Castings of Insects

The object—a dead beetle, for example —is first arranged in a natural position, and the feet are connected with an oval rim of wax. It is then fixed in the center of a paper or wooden box by means of pieces of fine wire, so that it is perfectly free, and thicker wires are run from the sides of the box to the object, which subsequently serve to form air channels in the mold by their removal. A wooden stick, tapering toward the bottom, is placed upon the back of the insect to produce a runner for casting. The box is then filled up with a paste with 3 parts of plaster of Paris and 1 of brick dust, made up with a solution of alum and sal ammoniac. It is also well first to brush the object with this paste to prevent the formation of air bubbles. After the mold thus formed has set, the object is removed from the interior by first reducing it to ashes. It is, therefore, allowed to dry, very slowly at first, by leaving in the shade at a normal temperature (as in India this is much higher than in our zone, it will be necessary to place the mold in a moderately warm place), and afterwards heating gradually to a red heat. This incinerates the object, and melts the waxen base upon. which it is placed. The latter escapes, and is burned as it does so, and the object, reduced to fine ashes, is removed through the wire holes as suggested above. The casting is then made in the ordinary manner.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Bermuda Fishing

If you are planning a trip to Bermuda and want to experience some the best offshore fishing in the world contact:

Gringo Charters
Just one hour away from the fishing grounds, this 31-foot custom JC is fully equipped for offshore fishing. Chum for yellowfin and blackfin tuna, or troll for wahoo, dolphin and blue marlin - whatever baits your hook. Our season runs from April through November with the marlin bite peaking in June, July and August. Contact Capt. Joey Dawson at 441-295-3500, 441-504-3474 (boat) or 441-295-8053 (fax).

Capt Dawson is down to earth, honest, and a direct descendant of the original inhabitants of Bermuda.

You will have the time of your life and return for more!

He also plays lead guitar in a local band that is available for gigs.

Ahhh the good life!

My #1 Boy!

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Put the fun back in the outdoors

Don't miss this!

Fishing for college Money

1st annual Chesterfield Fire Fighters Rockfish Tournament

Dec. 4, and 5 at Norview Marina, Deltaville, VA. Rockfish Tournament

Capt. Joe Newsom died at age 48 of a heart attack.

He is survived by his wife and two teenage children

The tournament is being held to provide college tuition money for his children.

the fee is $60 dollars.

Charters available at an extra fee.

Contact Lt. Mike Martell at 804-363- 3007

0r email at

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Sunday, April 27, 2008

For my Daughter

Smallmouth mount I am working on for my daughter

Friday, April 11, 2008

Cabelas, Hamburg PA

Directions to Hamburg, PA Retail Store
100 Cabela Drive
Hamburg, PA 19526

Telephone: 610-929-7000

GPS Coordinates:
N 40° 33.46" W 76° 00.19'

I-78 (From the East)
  1. Merge onto PA-61 N via Exit #29B.
  2. Travel approximately 1/2 mile and turn left onto Cabela drive
I-78 (From the West)
  1. Merge onto PA-61 N via Exit #29.
  2. Travel approximately 1/2 mile and turn left onto Cabela drive
PA-61 (From the South)
  1. Traveling north on PA-61, turn left onto Cabela Drive
PA-61 (From the North)
  1. Traveling south on PA-61, turn right onto Cabela Drive

Peacock Locator call

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

What a Great Place to teach our youth about the Treasure we have called The Bay.

This is very close to where I spent my youth. I am glad to see it being shared with so many young people!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Outdoor ministry

Check out this site:

Outdoor Ministry Network

OMN Blog

Fredericksburg Fly Fishing Show

The Fredericksburg Fly Fishing Show was a winner as always. Unfortunately Lefty Kreh injured his knee and had to cancel. However others filled in nicely.

There was a Film festival that was absolutely awesome and well worth the 5 dollar admission fee alone.

Nice job guys, see you next year!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Track Virginia outdoor Legislation

2008 Virginia General Assembly Legislation

Through this summary, VDGIF will provide information on bills related to the Department's mission that may be of interest to you.

Click on the bill number to go directly to the state's Legislative Information System (LIS) to view the most current version of the full text of the legislation, summary information, and current status. Please note that the "status" information will be updated on the LIS only when there has been action on the specific piece of legislation; not all bills will be acted on in the same timeframes.
Bill Title Status
HB114 Trap identification; permits hunters to attach an identification number to traps.
HB115 Submerged traps; licensed trappers allowed to visit every 72 hours.
HB319 Fishing permit, special; issued to patients from veterans or military hospitals.
HB872 Wearing blaze orange while hunting. No longer moving forward
HB886 Bear hound training season.
HB1016 Killing of deer over bait; local authority.
HB1088 Department of Game and Inland Fisheries; disclosure of official records; exceptions. No longer moving forward
HB1175 Apprentice hunting license.
HB1250 Personal flotation devices required for children; civil penalty. No longer moving forward
HB1352 Board of Game and Inland Fisheries. No longer moving forward
HB1361 Duties of Director of Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. No longer moving forward
HB1456 Hunting with bow and arrow or crossbow. No longer moving forward
HB1482 Bears; non-lethal control measures.
HJ114 Public's right to float, fish, and navigate waters of State; joint subcommittee to study. No longer moving forward
HJ231 Game and Inland Fisheries, Board of; Board & Department to provide for citizen input in regulations.
SB263 Retrieving hunting dogs. No longer moving forward
SB365 Hunting turkeys. No longer moving forward
SB524 Hunting on Sunday. No longer moving forward
SB552 Fishing license; exemptions for persons assisting disabled persons.
SB617 Apprentice hunting license.
SB708 Urban archery season; incorporate regulations consistent with daily hunting provisions. No longer moving forward
SB765 Water safety enforcement.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Lefty Kreh to be at Fredericksburg Fly Fishing Show!!!

5th Annual Fredericksburg Fly Fishing Show

March 22nd, 2008 at the National Guard Armory in Fredericksburg, VA

Monday, February 4, 2008

Another Great Eastern Sports Show #53

It was a great weekend at the annual Harrisburg Show. Nearly an entire day talking to outfitters from around the world. What a wealth of hunting knowledge in one place.

Chuck Adams was terrific as usual albeit a slight incident in the seminar. The poor girl who won a free clinic with Chuck used the wrong pin on her first shot at the target, and the arrow ricocheted off the backstop, through the window glass, and out into the parking lot. Fortunately for everyone no one was injured. It was quite a moment of shock and silence for all when that happened!

Dan Thompson

and his wife were a wealth of knowledge of predator calling. Great folks with a great product!!

Chef Wutsch and Deer and Wild Game Butchering
Chef Wutsch's professional career has spanned over 30 years of culinary experience. He has received numerous culinary teaching awards, has been featured in many newspaper and magazine articles. An avid hunter and outdoorsman, Chef Wutsch has cooked for professional outfitters in Montana's Bob Marshall, Scapegoat and Spotted Bear Wilderness, the largest untamed areas in America. He has cooked in many hunting camps throughout the country and has taught courses on game cookery across the nation. He has been a featured guest speaker for many sports shows and national conventions such as the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, National Wild Turkey Federation, and the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show, the largest outdoor show in North America. View daily sessions.

The show is well worth the time and money a must for every outdoorsman!!!

link here

What's Going On This Week At The

Thank you for purchasing tickets to the 2008 Eastern Sports & Outdoor Show. We all look forward to seeing you and thought it would be helpful to share some of the great events and information happening at this years show. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at Thanks!

Your e-Ticket gets you in fast. Be Sure To Visit
You have access to our special "get in fast" entrance featuring our famous red carpeted, fast track in to the Show. Use the Cameron St. entrance and look for the red carpet.
• A hall filled with all types of calls.
• All types of outdoor and indoor apparel
• The Powersports Hall - filled with ATV's, Trucks, 4-Wheelers and Motorcycles

Show Hours - Check out Super Tuesday Hours! The Show Closes at 9 p.m.! Have Your Deer Antlers Scored

Tuesday, Feb 5th
10am - 9pm
Wednesday, Feb 6th
10am - 8pm
Thursday, Feb 7th
10am - 8pm
Friday, Feb 8th
10am - 8pm

Saturday, Feb 9th
9am - 7pm
Sunday, Feb 10th
10am - 5pm
Co-sponsored by the PA Deer Association-PA State Chapter, Quality Deer Management Association, and Trupes Quality Hunting and Wildlife Management. Any legally obtained Whitetail Deer Mounted Head of Antlers with the skull plate intact may be submitted for scoring. An entry fee/donation of $15 for an official score and $10 for non-official score will be charged. Cash prizes of $100, $75, and $50 will be awarded along with merchandise prizes.

It's Easy To Bring Your Deer Antlers In:
1. You may drop off a companion (each person requires a ticket for entry) at the Cameron Street Circle Entrance to carry in your deer antlers.
2. Ask for a deer antler pass from anyone in an orange vest.
3. Visit Booth # 949 in the Northwest Hall.

For further information contact: Steve Trupe, event coordinator at
(877) 806-6993 or email him at
New Color Coded Map - makes it easier than ever to get around! Do not miss out on any of the Special Events!
Get around fast with our new color coded map - each hall color matches the map. Print yours out today! click here to access. • Taste of the Great Outdoors - Tonight - Tuesday, February 5th
• Daily deer butchering seminars
• Free concert by Roses Wild - Tonight - Tuesday, February 5th and Friday, February 8th at 6 p.m.
See the entire event schedule here.
Event Hot Spots Special Events Personalities
• Bass Pro Shops Hawg Tank - New Product Demonstrations
• US Smokeless Tobacco Western Legends Tour
(Must be 18 yrs. old to enter)
• Trout Pond - Fish while at the show!
• See an Orange County Army Chopper at the U.S. Army -
Booth # 426 & 427
• Great deals and specials through out the show
Chuck Adams Bow Hunting Clinic
Bob Foulkrod
Known as America's most respected bow hunting authority, will be on the Bass Pro Shops stage - Feb 8th and 9th
Randy Oitker
Precision Archery Shooting Demonstrations, amazing trick shots and entertainment
Chef Wutsch Deer and Wild Game Butchering
Discover ways to process and prepare your wild game
Plan Your Dream Adventure
• Over 500 Outfitters and Guides
• Fishing Charters featuring some of the best captains in the business
• Plan a great safari - even plan a photo safari

Visit these great exhibitors:

The Sportsman's Shop

2008 Hunters will be eligible for four wheeler giveaway at the end of bow season.

Xtreme Outdoorsman Challenge. Hunt 4 species in 2 days.$100,000 in cash and prizes. Sign up at booth #3801. $1000.00 per team. See website for details

Lekota Safari's is a family run business located in the famous Limpopo Province in northern South Africa. Our goal is to offer you the best quality so that you can enjoy the experience of a lifetime! Booth 905

Happy Jalapeno Company - Booth #153 Zook Structures- Booth #999
High Lonesome Outfitters - Booth #3712 Western Maine Outfitters - Booth #1102
Call of the Wild Outfitters -
Booth # 1078
Advanced Solar Industries - Booth # 964

Happy Landing Lodge/Camp Manitou - Booth #1136

Outdoor Hands, LLC - Booth # 328
Double J Outfitters -
Booth #2417
ECT, Inc. Taxidermy and Tannery - Booth #1533
Hot Trails Inc - Booth #275 JD's Hunting Lodge Manitoba - Booth #1159
Kootenai Log Homes- Booth #359 Big Ben Moose Hunting - Booth # 2422

Monday, January 28, 2008

Pending State Record Striper!

Here's the picture of what will probably be Virginia's state record saltwater striped bass. The particulars are:

Date: Jan. 23, 2008
Angler: Fred Barnes, Chesapeake
Fish weight: 73 pounds
Length: 52 inches
Girth: 31.5 inches
Lure: Mann's Stretch 30
Reel: Penn 30 level-wind spooled with 50-pound-test line
Boat: Country Girl
Captain: Pat Foster

Even though this fish is barely 5 pounds shy of the world record, I wouldn't be a bit surprised if this record falls again soon. It sounds like there are just loads of stripers off Virginia Beach right now and you know there have got to be some bigger ones in there.

hat tip Mark @