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Ben Coleman | 01.16.2018

Over the summer of 2017, I determined to figure out how to catch the elusive Northern Snakehead on the Potomac River. Although kayak bass fishing is my passion, I decided to take a break from it by stepping outside of my comfort zone to target this species because of their growing numbers and rising popularity. I quickly discovered that kayak anglers have a much needed advantage in Snakehead fishing - the stealth factor. These fish are usually located deep in the lily pads and hydrilla mats of shallow water and they can be spooked easily. So, being in a kayak allows for a more stealthy approach when paddling through the vegetation. 

Spotting these fish is not impossible, but getting them to bite is a different story. Snakehead are known to hit top water, so when I first started I decided to use one of my favorite hollow body frogs. This turned out to be a big mistake; my first bite on the frog was quickly shredded and unusable. After this experience, I learned if I wanted to use a frog, the best way (and cheaper way) is with a 12 pack of soft plastic frogs with a size 5 hook. Another successful way I learned to catch these fish is by using a chatter bait or spinner bait. It can be difficult in thick vegetation, but burning the baits overtop of a hydrilla mat can generate a big bite in certain spots. When targeting a new species of fish, it can be easy to get discouraged if your first ideas don’t work, but taking the time to figure the fish out is one of the best parts of the sport. Targeting the Northern Snakehead was a challenging and extremely rewarding experience.

Watch the Video!:  

Follow Haleigh on Instagram: @hbk_fishing 


where is best spot for northern-snakehead-potomac-river?
Great write up and video! I have become incredibly interested in snakehead since my friend showed me pictures of the ones he caught last year. Yesterday was the first time I actually went out to target them from the bank. I was looking for them to come up to breathe air and when I saw one, I threw my lipless crankbait past it and worked it back as if it were a dead shad. And the snakehead took! It was an awesome feeling being able to go out with a specific goal and accomplishing it.

This is a video of it:
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