Cold Water Fishing.....Icy ramps in the morning and evening make launching dangerous. Also bunks will freeze after launch; soak them in the water before driving boat on.
Water is around 40 degrees. All techniques work better with lighter line. Use combinations of 10-15 pound Gamma Torque braid with 6-pound Edge fluorocarbon leader. A dry week, but cold with highs only in the low 40s. Overnight lows in the upper 20s. Warming into the 50s into the weekend with highs of 50 with showers.
Target areas with steep drops. Spoils Cove and Smoot Bay are protected bays with deep water and are out of the current. There are other deep spots in various creeks. Warm water discharges, Possum Point, Blue Plains and Four Mile Run are hot spots, literally. Often 10 degrees or more warmer. This allows for more aggressive presentations.
While Silver Buddy blade baits, ½ ounce silver and gold, are the best to catch and find fish, curl tailed 4-inch grubs have always worked on the Potomac. The tails create a lot of vibration with very little movement. A cold water tip is to thread them with tails up to allow them to move more when being dragged on the bottom.
A ¼ ounce head allows contact with the bait and to move them very slowly. Several colors work well. Under cloudy skies or in stained water: green pumpkin with black flake and pumpkin seed with black flake. In clear water or with sunny skies: watermelon/red flake, chartreuse/black flake, and smoke/black flake.
Old school standby Mann’s 3 inch avocado Stingray grub works very well moved slowly with pauses, down drops. Rig on ¼ ounce ball head jigs with the tail straight and flat. Keep hooks sharp as cold water bass have very tough mouths.