Baltimore

36 Fishing Charters

Baltimore Fishing Charters

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Top Fishing Charters in Baltimore


Nestled around the mouth of the Patapsco River, over 150 miles into the Chesapeake Bay, Baltimore was built on its incredible fishing and its strategic port location. Baltimore fishing charters can get you on a staggering mix of species depending on which way you head from the harbor. The river holds both saltwater and freshwater fish, depending how far upriver you go, and the open waters of the Chesapeake Bay are famous for their productive shoals and awesome backwaters. 
 
And Baltimore has a lot more to offer than fish! If you only know the city from shows like “The Wire”, you may be surprised to find a beautiful historic center, full of quaint 18th-century buildings and monuments to the area’s past. In fact, a third of all buildings in town are on the national historic register. Baltimore has definitely earned the nickname “Charm City”.

Baltimore Fishing Spots

With a half-dozen different rivers and the whole of the Chesapeake Bay on your doorstep, you won’t have to travel far to find good fishing. There are some spots that local anglers can’t get enough of and here are a few you’ll probably hit on your trip.
 

Baltimore Harbor

When we said “right on your doorstep” we weren’t kidding. Baltimore Harbor fishing can get you on some incredible catches without ever leaving the city. Striped Bass top the bill here, but you can catch anything from Flounder to Catfish in these murky waters.
 

Patapsco River

You could spend a week fishing your way up the river and catch different species every day. The mouth is home to Seatrout, Flounder, Croakers, and more, feeding in the sediment-rich waters. The briny waters hold big Striped Bass, and freshwater spots upriver are home to Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass, Carp, Perch, and much more.
 

Chesapeake Bay Bridge

If it’s trophy Stripers you’re after, you can’t miss fishing around Chesapeake Bay Bridge. The choppy waters around the piles are the perfect feeding ground for huge Rockfish (as they’re known locally). You can also find Bluefish here, and the deeper rocky bottom is a great place to find Black Seabass, Tautog, Flounder, and more.
 

Tea Kettle Shoals

The Chesapeake Bay has dozens of natural and artificial reefs, made up of oyster bars, sunken sailing ships, and shoals. The Tea Kettle Shoals are one of the largest, holding Stripers, Blues, Bass, Flounder, Tautog, Crab, and more. This is some of the best food fishing in the bay.
 

Canton Waterfront Park

After great shore fishing but don’t want to leave town? Fishing from the park can bag you a variety of inshore species. The best thing about fishing here is that you don’t even need a license to do so!

Fishing Techniques

People have been fishing out of Baltimore for centuries, and they’ve developed some tried and true ways to bring in big fish. Striped Bass are often caught by live lining, but if that sounds boring to you, you can try throwing topwater plugs or poppers. In fact, a variety of lures work wonders for these greedy feeders, and they’re all great fun on spinning gear.
 
If you’re fishing upriver, you can enjoy a great day’s fly fishing for Perch, Shad, Carp, and Stripers. You’ll need anything from a 5-weight to a 9-weight, depending on which fish you’re after. Top tip for Carp fishing - try baiting your hook with a few pieces of sweet corn if they keep ignoring your flies.
 
Out at the shoals, you can catch a huge range of species on live bait. Tautog, Flounder, Black Seabass, and much more will gobble up baits of Bunk, Spot, and Crab. Speaking of Crab, Blue Crab are one of the area’s favorite foods, and you can’t visit Maryland without trying them. Catch these tasty little guys in cages, or try trotlining from a charter boat to bring in a huge haul!

Need to Know

Fishing licenses are included on most Baltimore fishing charters. If you’re heading out on your own, fish from a license-free spot like Canton Park or pick up a license from the DNR’s website. The fishing seasons change regularly in the Chesapeake Bay, and the authorities may announce an early closure or a shortened season for many important species. It’s best to fish with a guide in order to stay within the rules, as different bodies of water have special seasons and limits. In particular, the catch limits on the Patapsco River vary depending on where you’re fishing.
 
Baltimore
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January

The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade celebrates one of the country’s most influential civil rights campaigners in January. If you laugh in the face of winter, you can also enjoy the Polar Bear Plunge this time of year.

February

If you missed the Polar Bear Plunge but still want to get cold for a good cause, join Cupid’s Undie Run! This charity event sees runners sprint through town in nothing but their underwear.

March

Black Seabass are open for harvest in March and anglers take to the water in droves to catch this delicious fish. Tautog are also biting hard this time of year, making for some great food fishing.

April

Blue Crab and Striped Bass open for harvest in April, making it one of the most productive times to fish the Chesapeake Bay. Don’t be a fool, get out there and bag yourself some tasty fish!

May

The list of delicious fish just keeps getting bigger as the weather warms up. Speckled Trout, Flounder, Tautog, Black Seabass, Crab, Stripers, Sheepshead, and Croakers are all in season!

June

River anglers have been enjoying catch and release fishing for Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass all spring, but from June on you can finally keep this freshwater delicacy.

July

Baltimore Artscape has been going since the 80’s, bringing Baltimore’s arts into full view with performances, exhibits, demonstrations, and more. This is a chance to really get to know the city.

August

The heat of summer just makes the fish bite harder here in the Chesapeake Bay. Bag yourself some tasty Flounder and Crab, or battle monster Striped Bass for the perfect trophy or a great meal.

September

People say you shouldn’t eat Crab after summer. Don’t listen to them - crabbing is great in September! Pull in some tasty Rockfish before running your trotline and heading home with a real feast.

October

Baltimore Free Fall welcomes you to enjoy over 300 arts and cultural events for free. The festival spans most of the month, and there’s always something great to check out.

November

Charm City Fringe Festival gives you yet another chance to enjoy Baltimore’s great artistic and cultural scene. See rising stars in independent theater events, or check out some great live stand-up.

December

Celebrate the music of the King himself in The Night of 100 Elvises. This is exactly what it sounds like, with live performance of Elvis’ greatest hits. Not a fan? Escape the music and bag some Stripers instead!

Baltimore Fishing Calendar

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4-hour evening trip with Captain Jake
Bryan W. fished with Rockin N Rowan on August 12, 2019
Make sure you have a back-up fishing plan in case the Bay is unable to navigate.
Whole day with captain Mike.
Stanley H. fished with Legal Hooker Charter Fishing on June 28, 2019
Take snacks, lots of beverages, only 1 large cooler to take the fish home with you after they are filet.
Half Day on Lilly B
Randy K. fished with Lilly B Fishing Charters on May 26, 2019
For us getting to Essex was easy and the marina was well laid out with plenty of parking. It has great access to the bay and all the places you want to fish.
Full day
David G. fished with Legal Hooker Charter Fishing on September 8, 2018
Bring rain gear and be ready for anything
Excellent fishing Adventure with Captain Chuck
Leslie Q. fished with Chills Light Tackle Guide Service on August 18, 2018
Yes I would... great area, and friendly community..
Full day with Capt. Jacob. Fully experienced, professional and easily conversent.
William E. fished with Rockin N Rowan on July 11, 2018
Let the guide / captain do his job. He knows where the fish are.
JACOB WAS AMAZING!
Nicole B. fished with Rockin N Rowan on July 1, 2017
Please SEEK Jacob he will make you first experience AMAZING!

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