Author Archives: Theaux Le Gardeur

Backwater Angler Reopens May 22, 2020

Based on the County Executive’s order, Backwater Angler will our reopen our doors for retail business tomorrow, May 22 at 10AM.

Big Changes you need to be aware of for our reopening:
Mask requirements are in effect-if you’re not wearing a mask we won’t welcome you in. Period.
We will limit the total # customers to Three(3) in the door at a time.
Our restroom will remain closed to the public.
If you’re sick, stay at home. We can always “talk fishing” remotely.

Extended Hours on the Weekends:
Because we’ve missed a good part of our busy season and because we want to follow social distancing guidelines and allow time for cleaning following CDC guidelines we will begin earlier on the weekends and will now be opening at 8AM on Saturdays and Sundays through May and June.

Contactless Curbside Continues: For those in a hurry or not yet comfortable with the easing of restrictions and ask that you preorder online our secure website. Please note approximately what time and what vehicle you will be in so we can place the items in your trunk upon arrival. If you’d rather us put the items in thermal we’re still offering free shipping on all orders placed online.

Guide Services resume:
Our guiding and instruction related activities will resume June 1. We have quite a backlog of schools and guide trips since mid-March so if you have a future date in mind don’t delay in calling us to set up a date and time so we can get you on the calendar.

Other services resume:
We can know spool up reels.

We greatly appreciate all of the support our online and curbside customers have given us during the closure and as always wish that you and your families stay well.

Spring Fish Stocking Report from MDDNR

We wanted to share this great news with you from the State. To date, the department has stocked 211,450 brown, golden, and rainbow trout across the state, at the locations listed below. Annual production at our hatcheries is about 300,000 trout. This completes trout stocking for the spring. Please obtain your fishing license here.

Maryland Department of Natural Resources conducted limited trout stocking throughout Maryland this spring in an effort to alleviate overcrowding at state fish hatcheries, and also provide opportunity for recreational anglers.

Following Gov. Larry Hogan’s executive orders to limit spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, state employees suspended all field activities, including regularly scheduled trout stocking.

Without the scheduled stocking, state hatcheries lacked room needed to continue production for future seasons, and as trout in these facilities continued to grow, they were at risk of higher mortality. Removing fish and stocking them into public waters became an urgent matter.

The department encourages anglers to take advantage of the incredible fishing opportunities Maryland has to offer, provided all practice social distancing, avoid crowded areas, and minimize social interaction.

Allegany County:
Battie Mixon: 1,500
Cotton Cove Pond: 600
Evitts Creek: 6,000
Fifteen Mile Creek: 3,700
Flintstone Creek: 1,000
Georges Creek: 500
Jennings Run: 4,500
N.B.P.R. Zero Creel: 1,900
North Jennings Run Watershed: 1,000
Rocky Gap: 4,400
Wills Creek: 5,500

Baltimore County:
Gunpowder Falls, Lower: 7,000
Gunpowder Falls, Upper: 3,000
Little Gunpowder Falls: 3,500
Patapsco River, Daniels: 2,000

Carroll County:
Farm Museum Pond: 1,200
South Branch Patapsco River: 1,400
South Branch Patapsco River. (Mariottsville Road): 2,500
South Branch Patapsco River (River Roa): 1,250
Taneytown Pond: 1,100

Cecil County:
Big Elk: 2,500
Howards Pond: 1,750
Rising Sun Pond: 1,100

Charles County:
Hughesville Pond: 300
Myrtle Grove: 2,000
Wheatley Lake: 2,500

Frederick County:
Brunswick Pond: 1,000
Carroll Creek: 1,000
Catoctin Creek Park: 500
Cunningham Falls Lake: 4,000
Fishing Creek: 1,000
Frank Bentz Pond: 1,000
Friends Creek: 2,500
Hamburg Pond: 500
Middle Creek: 4,700
Owens Creek: 3,000
Rainbow Lake: 2,500
Whiskey Springs Pond: 500

Garrett County:
Accident Pond: 1,500
Bear Creek: 9,000
Broadford Lake: 3,000
Casselman River:4,000
Deep Creek Lake: 7,400
Glades Park Pond: 1,000
Herrington Lake: 3,500
Jennings Randolph Lake: 6,000
Little Youghiogheny River: 2,000
Mill Run: 1,000
Muddy Creek: 1,800
North Branch Potomac River, Gorman: 600
North Branch Potomac River: Kitzmiller: 4,500
North Branch Potomac River:.Westernport: 5,000
Parkview Pond: 500
Piney Reservoir: 1,000
Savage Reservoir: 2,300
Savage River: 6,000
Snowy Creek: 1,000
Youghiogheny River: 2,100
Youghiogheny River, Friendsville: 2,000
Youghiogheny River, Oakland: 6,000

Harford County:
Deer Creek: 6,500
Forest Hill Pond: 500

Montgomery County:
Great Seneca Creek: 3,500
Izaak Walton Pond: 500
Lake Needwood: 1,500
Martin Luther King Jr. Pond: 1,400
Northwest Branch: 4,500
Patuxent River, Laurel: 1,000
Prince George’s County
Cosca Lake: 2,000
Lake Artemesia: 3,000
Laurel Lake: 600
Melwood Pond: 250
Queen Anne’s County
Unicorn Branch: 500

Washington County:
Antietam Creek: 2,000
Beaver Creek: 6,500
Blairs Valley: 6,500
Greenbrier Lake: 4,000
Indian Springs Pond: 500
Israel Creek: 2,500
Licking Creek: 3,000
Little Antietam Creek: 1,500
Little Tonoloway Creek: 300
Little Tonoloway Creek, Upper: 300
Sharpsburg Pond: 500
Sideling Hill Creek : 1,000

Catch and Release Fishing and Boating Closed Statewide in Maryland

Here is the latest Covid-19 update from DNR from Wednesday April 8, 2020. Governor Larry Hogan has issued an executive order on March 30, 2020, which institutes a Stay at Home directive and says that no Maryland resident should be leaving their home unless it is for an essential job or reason, such as obtaining food or medicine, seeking urgent medical attention, or for other necessary purposes.

While the order does allow for outdoor exercise recreation, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is reaffirming the need for members of the public who engage in outdoor recreation to follow all rules and guidelines in place to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Governor Hogan has stressed that safely practiced outdoor recreation time is essential to health and well-being. Most Maryland state parks and other public lands remain open, and residents may engage in safe, isolated activities.

Under the executive order, no Marylander should leave their home except for an essential reason. Therefore, recreational boating is not allowed. Subsistence hunting and fishing — limited hunting and limited recreational fishing and crabbing for sustenance — can continue, however social distancing must be adhered to strictly. No permits for fishing tournaments, including virtual tournaments, will be issued by the department until further notice. Commercial fishing is deemed essential and may continue since it is part of the food supply chain.

Maryland Fly Fishing Gear Curbside Pickup Halted

OK folks, as they say, we’re all in this together. Stay well. Thank you for your patronage. The shop would not exist as a small retail specialty shop without your loyalty, kindness and friendship. We wish nothing more but for you and your families to stay healthy and happy.

While we greatly appreciate that many of our loyal and quite a few new customers were able to get out on the Gunpowder River during opening day weekend and take part in our curbside pickup offerings, today’s order COVID19-07 from the Governor’s office halts our curbside pickup. The silver lining being that people will be safer at home. We can still sell products on a delivery basis and for that reason have waived all priority mail shipping costs from orders placed during this time. If you can’t find what you need in the catalog please call us at 410-357-9557 and please let us know what you need.

We have instead instituted website https://www.backwaterangler.com/shop/ and phone ordering 410-357-9557 during regular business hours.

We will not be updating stream reports at this time-however please view the archives in the sidebar to get a sense of how the river has historically fished during the 19 years we’ve freely shared our knowledge of the River by visiting and scrolling down the sidebar of the Backwater Angler website. Need a break? One suggestions would be to use the search by typing in Hendricksons or March Browns to get a glimpse of what we’ve been reporting on…

We do not have flies on the website for sale individually and so have grouped fly selections based on river location and category. i.e. Dries, Nymphs, and Streamers Euro Nymphs.

We suggest that you call the shop at 410-357-9557 to place fly orders. We will ship any order free freight USPS priority mail during this time. Please email the shop or check the stream report if you need additional guidance.

For online orders over $25, customers can choose between a pack of Patagonia Provisions Mellow Curry Savory Seeds or Classic Barbecue Savory Seeds
a Patagonia Provisions Inca Berry and Almond Bar, Mango and Almond Bar or an Apricot and Almond Bar.

R.L. Winston Fly Rods for Curbside Pickup


It’s clear that fishing is on your mind-why else would you be reading this? For your consideration and approval are two distinct series of rods from R.L. Winston. I’ve owned my TMF for 19 years -it will be with me for as long as I fly fish for native and wild trout.

Winston – Tom Morgan Favorite

A rod from the “other” series is one Gene has been fishing with great success and enjoyment whilst euro-nymphing and fishing a jumble of streamers and dries.

Winston Boron IIIX Super 10

Ultimately there is no one fly rod that will be well-suited to every situation but you won’t find finer examples of rods that are smooth, light, versatile and purpose built for fly fishing a wide variety of flies than these two. While Winston is not shipping at present, we currently have these in stock ready for purchase online or via phone and available for curbside pickup or shipped USPS to your home shelter. Stay well.

Opening Day of Trout Season in Maryland Beckons

It wouldn’t be opening day, tomorrow, March 28th in the 5-fish-a-day section of the Gunpowder River without rain in the forecast. This time of year we receive quite a few calls from anglers seeking clarification on what sections of the Upper Gunpowder Falls River are catch and release and what sections are stocked. So we’ve provided the following. In short, the stocked section is referred to in the regulations book and the stocking schedule as Upper Gunpowder which means above Loch Raven, not above Falls Rd. So if one wants to take up to 5 fish a day, one may do so from one mile below the Phoenix RD access upstream through Sparks RD, Lower and Upper Glencoe and one and a halfmiies upstream to the Colonial Oil pipeline crossing (white tubes with red caps). The above photo was a Gunpowder RIVERKEEPER sponsored Eagle Scout project by Jacob Danko of troop 380, Hampstead that was completed in 2017-18. These color coded signs are posted at every access point and denote the catch and release, artificials-only section in red, the wild trout two fish a day section and the stocked trout 5 fish a day are prominently displayed at all of the access points of the River to provide outreach on regulations, invasive species and drinking water supply. If you are interested in supporting this work please consider a charitable contribution to Gunpowder RIVERKEEPER.

Fly Fishing Gear in Maryland Curbside and Online


Great news for our customers who by now likely need some social distancing time afield-especially if you need the right gear including leader, tippet and flies-although we won’t talk you out of a new fly rod and reel, waders or boots to help you trick native, wild and stocked trout in the Gunpowder River.

While we are still considered a non-essential business and closed to walk-in traffic. Our doors and bathroom are not open to the public so please plan accordingly. Based on the Governor’s order Number COVID19-06 issued March 24, 2020 we will continue to sell products on a delivery or “curbside” pick-up basis only. For the above reasons we have taken the following precautions to protect our staff and our customers:

We are not selling fishing licenses at present.
We have instead been directed people to use the compass portal.

We are not taking manual payments via cash or credit card at curbside.
We have instead instituted website https://www.backwaterangler.com/shop/ and phone ordering 410-357-9557 during regular business hours.

We do not have flies on the website for sale individually and so have grouped fly selections based on river location and category. i.e. Dries, Nymphs, and Streamers Euro Nymphs.

We suggest that you call the shop at 410-357-9557 to place orders. We will ship any order free freight USPS priority mail during this time. Please email the shop or check the stream report if you need additional guidance.

As an incentive, we will be waiving regular shipping costs for all online orders.
For curbside orders over $25, customers can choose between a pack of Patagonia Provisions Mellow Curry Savory Seeds or Classic Barbecue Savory Seeds
a Patagonia Provisions Inca Berry and Almond Bar, Mango and Almond Bar or an Apricot and Almond Bar.

Patagonia Provisions in Maryland

We are very proud to represent Patagonia Provisions in Maryland and are offering free USPS priority mail shipping on orders over $49.Please give these Patagonia nutritious, shelf stable foodstuff catalog offerings a look. In keeping with Patagonia’s philosophy all are responsibly sourced. Backwater Angler currently offers Patagonia Provisions Organic savory seeds for snacking, sustainable wild pink and sockeye salmon, Buffalo jerky, organic chilis and responsibly sourced smoked mussels and mackerel as well as the veritable almond and energy bars. Please call us at 410-357-9557 or drop us a line at info@backwaterangler.com to inquire about bulk orders.On a laptop or desktop and don’t want to scroll? See an abbreviated listing of all in Patagonia Provisions in the food category. On a tablet or phone? See listings as links below:

Patagonia Provisions Spicy Buffalo Jerky

Patagonia Provisions Original Buffalo Jerky

Patagonia Provisions Black Pepper Wild Pink Salmon

Patagonia Provisions Lemon Pepper Wild Sockeye Salmon

Patagonia Provisions Original Wild Sockeye Salmon

Patagonia Provisions Smoked Mussels

Patagonia Provisions Lemon Caper Mackerel

Patagonia Provisions Organic Spicy Red Bean Chili

Patagonia Provisions Original Red Bean Chili

Patagonia Provisions Organic Black Bean Soup

Patagonia Provisions Organic Mango & Almond Bar

Patagonia Provisions Organic Apricot & Almond Energy Bar

Patagonia Provisions Organic Inca Berry & Almond Bar

Patagonia Provisions Classic BBQ Organic Savory Seeds

Patagonia Provisions Mellow Curry Organic Savory Seeds

Coronavirus 2019 (Covid-19) Update

Backwater Angler is very concerned about the impact of Covid-19 on our employees and customers. For updates on cases specific to Maryland and to find supporting documentation on prevention please visit the Maryland Department of Health. At this time we will plan to maintain usual operating hours. We are requiring any employees exhibiting symptoms to seek medical care and stay at home for a period of two weeks while providing them with sick pay to get them through this challenging time. We are following federal, state and local guidelines on small business operations. We are regularly cleaning and disinfecting touch-points and surfaces store-wide. We are also limiting the number of people in the store to six at any time and have currently closed our bathroom to the public.

Rather than renewing your fishing license in-store, please consider renewing your fishing license on-line here: https://compass.dnr.maryland.gov

Please note: In order to protect public health and safety and to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus, Governor Hogan has issued an executive order related to licenses, permits, registrations, and other authorizations that may be expiring or up for renewal during the state of emergency. The executive order immediately grants a grace period of 30 days after the date of termination of the state of emergency.

At present the Hereford Area of Gunpowder State Park remains open, however:

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources and Maryland State Parks are enacting enhanced measures to mitigate the risk of contact with the COVID-19 virus. This includes enhanced cleaning protocols at our state park public facilities, restrooms, ranger stations, nature centers, and other public buildings. Additionally, in accordance with the Governor’s Executive Order, all events and gatherings of groups larger than 50 people and restricting access by the public to certain State Parks buildings and facilities are cancelled. Stay updated on closures here: https://dnr.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/parkmap.aspx

Following Governor Larry Hogan’s emergency actions to protect public health during the COVID-19 pandemic, Fishing and Boating Services is temporarily stopping spring trout stocking effective immediately until further notice. More information here: https://dnr.maryland.gov/fisheries/Pages/trout/stocking.aspx

Please visit our website and stream report for current conditions on the Gunpowder River. We also encourage you to reach out over telephone or email if you would prefer not to travel up to the shop to “talk fishing”.

If you should need any gear and would prefer that we mail it to you please consider shopping online with us at https://www.backwaterangler.com/shop/ or if you can’t find what you need there please give us a call at 410-357-9557. –Especially if you need tippet, leader and flies ect…

Stay well. Thank you for your patronage. The shop would not exist as a small retail specialty shop without your loyalty, kindness and friendship. We wish nothing more but for you and your families to stay healthy and happy.

Used Fly Fishing Gear in Maryland

We have a new selection of used fly fishing gear in Maryland. Don’t postpone joy! Stop in over the weekend to see them for yourself. They won’t be here long! Here is a quick listing of rods from T&T, Scott, G. Loomis, Echo and reels from Ari T Hart, Ross, Bauer, Islander and Orvis.

Fly rods:
G. Loomis Whisper Creek GLX 8ft 8 inch 3wt 4pc $300
T&T Vector 9ft 4wt 3pc $400
T&T Vector 9ft 5wt 3pc $400
Scott G series 9ft 4wt 4pc $600
G. Loomis NRX 9ft 4wt 4 pc $350
Sage Z Axis 11ft 7wt 4pc $450
Scott STS 9ft 8weight 3 pc $375
Sage XP 9ft 8weight 4 pc $395
Echo E3 7ft 3wt 4pc $150

Fly Reels:
Ross G1 $175
Ross G2 $175
Ari T Hart F2 with extra spool $595
Orvis Battenkill III with two spools $350
Bauer MXP 1 $375
Islander 4.0 LX $450