Mike Sweeney — More area jewels: the Chowan River

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The Chowan River is a jewel of a river because it offers some of the best summer and winter fishing.

In the summer time you can catch white perch, largemouth bass and catfish. In the winter it is the place to fish for stripers.

Summer offers a variety of opportunities to fish on the Chowan because it has both main river and creek channel fishing.

The creeks in town are full of largemouth and they love the frog bite in the morning. When the sun gets up its time to flip a jig or soft plastic like a bug bait or lizard and there is plenty of wood and pads to keep you occupied.

The main river wood will bring the occasional big bass bite but when you throw an Uncle Jessie or white Beetle Spin there are plenty of perch for the taking.

Make sure when you catch one perch to slow down and fish that area thoroughly because they love to school up big this time of year.

While your there on the main river bring your catfish rods because the big cats love to hang out on the power lines just east of town.

Start about four or five in and work your way towards the middle till you find the magic tower then anchor up and load the cooler.

In the winter it seems like everyone and there brother that likes to striper fish hit the sound bridge and trolls for them with stretch lures but there are plenty of times when you cant get a bite.

I have found that in order to increase my odds I look for a few key factors that will help get the bite in my favor.

First there has to be some kind of current meaning tide or wind.

If the water is moving then the fish will hold to the bridge and position themselves for a feed. Next you want to use different colors on different depths till you find the one they want that day.

Once you find it then look for a variation of that particular color and the last thing is when all else fails stop by the pilings and jig for them.

What’s biting, where...

The fishing report is looking pretty good offshore with plenty of meat fish hitting squid baits and naked ballyhoo.

Look for a grass line or any piece of debris and keep the baits near that for the bite.

We have a pretty steady run of bailer mahi with the occasional gaffer along with the white marlin bite it will keep you busy.

Local angler Todie Bunn from Elizabeth City took first time offshore angler Jonathan Perry out for his first marlin and he was not disappointed.

The fish jumped and splashed his way into his memory with a release he will never forget.

Keep up the good work, Todie, and keep those reports coming.

Inshore and near shore the piers and beach have been a little slow but some croaker and spot are showing up here and there along with some pompano. The boats are doing better with blues, mackerel and the odd cobia to fill out the day.

Locally we have had some good runs of red fish in the sound all year but if you are in the right place at the right time you can score big like Brenda Miller from Currituck did this past weekend.

She caught two reds with her biggest fish measuring 27 inches. Great work, Brenda, but you are a legend in the area when it comes to fishing and hunting, so it doesn’t surprise me one bit.

The fish was caught on bottom rigs with shrimp in the big narrows, and I know you and your husband, James, fish there a lot.

If anyone else has a report then send it to fishingwithmike921@yahoo.com or hit me up on Facebook at Fishing with Mike.