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armesjr

Briery Creek and Sandy River Reservoir

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I am going to make a couple weekend trips to both Briery Creek and Sandy River Resevoir.  I was just looking to get some information on what people fish, has anyone fished there lately, and how they have done.  It would be a little over an hour drive for me, so when i go i was thinking about camping Saturday night so i could fish both Saturday and Sunday.  I was wondering if anyone knew of any campgrounds around that area.  Any info would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Jason

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I fish Briery more than any other place in Va. and it's 75 miles from my home. I have fished Sandy a lot also but the past couple of years I have concentrated on Briery the most. I've been fishing Briery since it opened in Jan 1989 and was at Sandy on opening day. For the most up-to-date info, and past information, check out-------

fishingva.com

I only post fishing reports on that site. I usually just make day trips to either.

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My wife, Dad and a few friends took me as a surprise birthday present last year. Woke me up told me to get me gear that we were headed to Mattawoman (an area I love to fish). Once we started goin' south I knew they had other plans and got real excited expecting either Briery (had been wanting to go all year), or SML. About a two and a half hour drive from our town here in Nova (Briery). Anyway, tough day fishing. Breezy, low water, sun dipping in and out all day. Muddy shorelines made it kinda hard for bank fishing in some areas between the pond by the gate and the end of the lake.

I threw mostly spinnerbaits, senkos, jigs and shallow cranks all day. For spinnerbaits I was casting to the shadier side of any trees in the water I could reach. Senkos I would toss around brush cover and laydown areas. Jigs I tossed to the trees and let fall down any branches/limbs I could get out to. The cranks I just used as a search bait.

I only caught one all day between a small grouping of trees by tossing a Mann's crankbait Minus One and burning it back (keep in mind this was early October and the water was fairly clear). Afterward I tried following up the area with a jig (after tossing the crankbait for a while unsuccesfully. Unfortunately I couldn't put together a pattern. Neither could anyone else. The day was mostly a bust, my wife managed the only other largemouth coming in a 1lb 15 oz on a live minnow. I was kinda mad cause she fell asleep on the dock, had her minnow out and her rod almost went into the water. I grabbed her, woke her up and she landed it. Lol.

So it was fun, but it was a tough day. Hopefully you will do better. It looks like prime jig fishing out there but the bite was tough when I was throwing em'. Be creative.

If you like using live bait, some of the best stuff to use here from what I hear is live minnows at the shop up the road from the lake. The bass suppossedly love em'. Good luck and let us know how you do. I may try it again later this year if I can get a canoe down there. Have a few buddies that own one. If not I may bank fish if I can get a few people to ride down with me. Long drive.

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JCrxy4Bass, the lake is full now. If you must fish from shore, the peninsula where the handicap fishing pier is near the dam is a good place to try, especially near the original gravel ramp and along that dam. With so much vegetation in the lake, shore fishing is really difficult. I only fished it twice in October and caught a total of 87 bass. The new lake near Fredericksburg had just opened at the end of Sept and I fished that 4 times in Oct.

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Thanks for the info Wayne.  We were gonna try there but it was our first time and we didn't know how other boaters would react to us fishing so much around the boat launch area there.  We may try next to the pier next time.  How far can you walk around the lake there?  If I remember right the banks seem higher and it seems as if there is a lot more brush there to manuever through.  Is the d**n any good as far as fishing?  Is there any decent access to it?

Like I said I'll be willing to try it agin this year but I'm gonna be watching the weather alot before I make the trip.

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You can fish at the main dam. There is a small parking area at the second turn after coming off of Rt. 15 . It is pretty rough and weedy though. The duck pond dam is a lot better place to shore fish-not as rough. I am not including the paved parking lot and ramp, just the gravel lot that is past the paved lot. If you go sometime around mid April, the water to the left side of the peninsula on out to the fishing pier is noted for double digit bass catches from shore. There are no limitations as to how far you can go around the lake to shore fish, the amount of clear shoreline area is your only problem, all around the lake is a wildlife management area.

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Hey Jason,

Maybe you can find a nice coed at Longwood and she'll put you up for the night! ;)

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That's Sam always thinkin' haha. Heya Jason, I dated a girl from Longwood once... kinda a prude... but I'm sure if your goin' for the weekend you could find some good ole' party down there. Population of females is pertttyyy good I hear lol. Just remember to wear all your patches and brag rag lol! ;)

Oh and don't forget the 6 pack of Miller Light!

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I am certainly going to defer to Wayne as far as current info goes...he certainly knows the lake better than I do.  But, I am getting ready to make my first run of the year down there too, so I was anxious to see all the responses to this post!  It's a little over 2 hours from my home (Roanoke), so I just make it a long day-trip too.

For what it's worth, at the new Sportsman's Warehouse here in  Roanoke, they have a "current conditions" board posted where they give info re: what's hitting well currently and how you can catch them.  I don't know exactly who is providing the 411, but it is saying most fish at Briery are still coming from deeper water, either on deep cranks or even drop-shotting.

I don't care what any of them say, I can't wait to launch my new Mattlures Ult. Bluegill and see what happens !  ;D

Good luck when you go, and make sure to send us a report!  Just make sure that you throw Momma Hawg back so the rest of us can rattle her lips too !

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I called and talked to the Prince Edward DGIF office a little while ago.  Got them to send me there contour maps for both Briery and Sandy River.  I dont know how detailed these will be.  If anyone has used them, let me know how they are.  Also if anyone knows of any better ones out there let me know.  I also asked them about current fishing, and he said that it was still pretty slow.   I am probably going to wait another week or two before i head out there.  i was trying to get a little info of where are some goods spots to start off

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I would like to know where the Sportsman's Warehouse gets their information too. I have been catching them close to the surface either over 17' depths or shallower. What I see is most are fishing within sight of the Rt. 701 ramp and are using live bait under floats with little or no success.

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Sent you a PM on map.

Give it a try and let us know.

Sam

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I checked the GMCO maps and they currently don't have one for Briery Creek.  I did however find a website bcfishingmaps.com, that does have them.  I have some coming from the DGIF, so i am gonna check those out and if they are bad, i will probably order one.  The ones from DGIF should be here by Thursday or Friday, so i will let everyone know how those are.  They were free so i am not expecting much.  

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Hey JCrzy4Bass,

You forgot about the 2.5lb LMB I caught at Briery.  I caught it in the pond in back.

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Yup... forgot you stuck that one.  I think someone probably released that in there from the main lake.  No one else got any bites in that water and a lot of it was REALLLLLLYY shallow.

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osbornj2, if you fish were the bass are, that swimbait will be just an anchor, LOL.

Wayne, hey, I'm not above using a lure retreiver!! I'm kinda geeky anyways! Heck, for a Mattlure, I might just go swimming for it ! 'Cause, you're right...I certainly don't need to spend $22 for another anchor !! :D

I don't mind breaking off a t-rig worm or even a jig now and then...but a LC or one of my new swimbaits..uhh uhh!

But, back on point...you mentioned catching them in shallower water. If you don't mind...what were you throwing? And, I could easily find this out, but I'm too lazy to go look ;), are you fishing near the dam, or up in the upper end by the other boat ramp. The "upper" ramp is where I always launch my boat, and I assume that it probably warms up a little quicker on that end as well.

Thanks for all of your advice... 8-)

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