Deep Creek is know for it's great fishing! The creek is stocked year round with the most common fish species including smallmouth and largemouth bass, walleye, crappie and chain pickerel. Other species in the lake include trout, bluegill, rock bass, northern pike, bullhead catfish, yellow perch and pumpkinseed sunfish. Fishing licenses can be purchased at several locations around the lake or you can also purchase online at https://compass.dnr.maryland.gov/ Fly Fishing- The Deep Creek area also has rivers and streams perfect for the fly fisherman. Check out Savage River Angler to book a fly-fishing trip!
Boating on Deep Creek Lake
An individual may not have or use on the waters of the lake a vessel 26 feet or more in length overall, except for a:
Pontoon boat, which may not exceed 30 feet in length overall;
Vessel operating under a valid nonconforming use permit; or
Boat with a molded platform, which may not exceed 27 feet in length.
An individual may not operate a vessel with an engine or engines:
Exceeding the manufacturer’s recommended maximum horsepower capacity; or
With a total displacement of greater than 550 cubic inches.
Except for an authorized patrol vessel, an individual may not use a siren on a vessel. An individual may not have or use a houseboat on the waters of the lake. An individual may not deposit or cause to be deposited garbage, sewage, waste of any kind, food stuff, paper, or other litter in the waters of Deep Creek Lake. An individual may not operate a vessel with an installed marine sanitation device capable of discharging treated or untreated sewage into the waters of the lake. The Department shall position buoys on the lake to mark hazards and public swimming areas. An individual may not operate a vessel inshore from a buoy which designates a public swimming area. Only Penelec may position buoys associated with the operation of the dam, intake, and spillway. An individual may not:
Operate on the lake a vessel which is towing another individual who is attached to a parachute or other device which causes that individual to become airborne;
Be towed by a vessel while attached to a parachute or other device which causes that individual to become airborne.
Personal Watercraft and Air-Cushioned Vessels. Except for vessels owned and operated by the State or local government, an individual may not operate a personal watercraft or air-cushioned vessel on the lake from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on:
The Saturday, Sunday, and holiday of Memorial Day weekend; and
The Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays from July 1 through Labor Day.
Maryland Boating Education Law Anyone operating a motorized vessel in the state of Maryland born on or after July 1, 1972, must possess a NASBLA approved certificate of boating safety education. To find a boating course in your area, call 410-643-8502 or check online at dnr.maryland.gov/boating.
Water Skiing on Deep Creek Lake Maryland waters offer wonderful opportunities for recreational boaters. With the ever-increasing number of boaters, it is everyone’s responsibility to work together to ensure that our waters are safe and clean. Water-skiing, along with being towed on a tube, kneeboard, or any other device, is very popular with Maryland boaters. These activities are both fun and challenging; however, towing people on skis or any other device requires additional knowledge and skills. Please invest the time to educate yourself in the practices necessary to be safe and responsible by reviewing the following laws and safety tips. They contain everything you’ll need to know when water-skiing in Maryland and will also help to make your boating experience a memorable one. Safe and fun skiing requires a driver and skier to make good judgments. The effects of sun, wind, waves, and vibration can impair judgment. Don’t stay on the water too long. Drinking alcoholic beverages, taking prescription drugs and over-the-counter medications, or using illegal drugs can also contribute to impaired judgment. Never operate a vessel or ski when your judgment is impaired, and remember, operating a boat while intoxicated is illegal and dangerous. The vessel operator is responsible for keeping the skier away from dangerous areas, as well as giving him or her an enjoyable ride. Keep the boat a safe distance from the shore, docks, and other objects in the water. Be on the lookout for other boats about to enter the ski area. If this happens, shut down the boat and wait for the area to clear. The driver must be alert for skiers in the water or stopped boats in his or her path. Before turning the boat, look to each side and behind to make sure there are no overtaking boats and that the turn will not endanger the skier. Remember, the person at the end of the towrope is an extension of the boat, and the operator must continually be aware of their presence and safety. Speed Limits In an area that is too populated with boats and/or persons to allow unlimited skiing, speed limits of 6 knots are in effect and skiing is not allowed. These areas are posted with white signs or buoys with the restrictions stated within an orange circle. These signs and buoys conform to the nationwide system of state markers, and special time restrictions are as posted. It is the operator’s responsibility to avoid these areas while water skiing or towing a similar device. Owners of shoreline property cite that the increase of large powerboats and speed/ski boat traffic traveling at high rates of speed, creates damaging wakes. Increased boat traffic leads to erosion, damage to docked boats, and damage to property. WATER SKIING IS SAFEST WHEN SKIERS AND BOAT OPERATORS KNOW AND USE COMMON-SENSE RULES. BEFORE TOWING A SKIER, THE OPERATOR SHOULD:
Review hand signals with the skier to ensure proper communications.
Make sure the skier is wearing a USCG approved life jacket.
Make sure the tow lines are of the same length if towing multiple skiers.
Be familiar with the area and aware of any hazards such as shallow water, rocks, or bridge pilings in the water.
Choose a safe location and know that water-skiing should never be attempted in swimming areas, low-speed mooring lanes, or marina channels.
Operate in an area at least 200 feet wide, giving a safety area of 100 feet on either side of the boat. A corridor length of 2,000 to 3,000 feet is desirable.
Remember to keep the boat a safe distance from the shore, docks and other objects in the water. You are responsible for your wake!
Never ski at night! It is both hazardous and illegal.
Hand Signals for Skiers Knowing proper hand signals will help the skier(s) communicate with their boat operator and/or observer.
Speed up the boat: Thumb up.
Slow down the boat: Thumb down.
Cut Motor/Stop: Slashing motion over neck. (Also used by driver or observer)
Turn the boat: Circle motion with arms over head then point in desired direction. (Also used by driver)
Return to dock: Pat on head
Speed and boat path OK or signals understood: OK signal with hand.
Skier OK after falling: Hands clasped over head.
All information provided by Maryland DNR Natural Resources Police | Safety Education Section | 305 Marine Academy Drive, Suite 1 | Stevensville, MD 21666 410-643-8502 | Toll Free 877-620-8367 | DNR.MARYLAND.GOV Deep Creek Lake State Park - Boat Ramp
The boat launch facility is open most of the year except when winter weather or ice conditions prohibit access. Fishing is generally good on the lake with stocked trout, walleye, bass, and yellow perch being the most abundant. A service charge for use of the ramp applies to all making use of the facility. A Maryland State Park passport (annual pass to all Maryland State Parks) is recommended. Purchase a State Park Passport here.
Maryland Hunting Licenses, Stamps and PermitsHow to Apply for a LicenseTermHunting licenses are valid from issuance to July 31 2020, except the Nonresident 3-Day Waterfowl and Small Game License. Full Season Hunting LicenseAllows you to hunt all legal game birds and mammals in season without the need for additional stamps, except: (1) deer during Archery Season; (2) deer during Muzzleloader Season; (3) migratory game birds; (4) furbearers, and (5) black bears. A Bonus Antlered Deer Stamp may also be used with these licenses. An Apprentice Hunting License is now available for first time hunters. The Apprentice Hunting License is a one-time license available to both residents and nonresidents who have never hunted before. Satisfactory completion of a short, online hunter safety course is required prior to purchasing the license and the apprentice hunter is required to hunt with a resident at least 18 years old who possesses a valid Maryland non-apprentice hunting license. The Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP), Safety Education Section provides Hunter Education Courses. Resident Apprentice Hunting License .................................................................. $10.00 For first-time Maryland resident hunters of any age who never held a Maryland hunting license. Nonresident Apprentice Hunting License ............................................................. $20.00 For first-time non-resident hunters of any age who never held a Maryland hunting license. A person may not purchase an Apprentice Hunting License if they have previously obtained any hunting license in Maryland. Use of an Apprentice Hunting License requires the following:
Successful completion of a short, online hunter safety course is required prior to purchasing this license.
Appropriate stamps are needed to hunt migratory birds and deer (an Archery Stamp, a Muzzleloader Stamp, and a bonus antlered deer stamp).
The apprentice hunter must be accompanied and directly supervised by a Maryland resident at least 18 years old who possesses a valid Maryland non-apprentice hunting license.
The apprentice and mentor hunter must hunt in close proximity so that the mentor can take immediate control of the archery device or firearm.
The apprentice hunter can hunt unaccompanied if the full hunter safety course was taken and a Certificate of Competency in Firearms and Hunting Safety was acquired.
ResidentResident Regular Hunting License $24.50 (Age 16 to 64) Resident Junior Hunting License $10.50 (Under 16 years of age, written permission of parent or guardian required) Resident Senior Hunting License $5.00 (Age 65 and above, may be purchased in the calendar year in which a resident attains the age of 65.) Holders of Senior Lifetime Consolidated LicensesThis license has been eliminated, but persons who already hold this license are “grandfathered” and do not need to purchase the Senior Hunting License, Archery, or Muzzleloader Stamps. However, they must buy a Bonus Antlered Deer Stamp (to hunt a bonus antlered deer), a Maryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp (to hunt migratory game birds), a Department of Natural Resources Managed Hunt Permit (where required), and a Furbearer Permit (to hunt or chase furbearers). A Big Game Harvest Record may be obtained at no charge from any Department of Natural Resources Sport License Agent location, in person or by mail from any Department of Natural Resources Service Center, or you can print your own. Nonresident Nonresident Hunting License $130.00 (Age 16 to 64) Nonresident Senior Hunting License $65.00 (Age 65 and above, may be purchased in the calendar year in which a nonresident attains the age of 65) Nonresident Junior Hunting License $32.50 (Under 16 years of age, written permission of parent or guardian required) Short Term License Nonresident 3-Day Waterfowl and Small Game License $45.00 Allows nonresidents of Maryland to hunt all legal game except deer, bear, and turkey for 3 consecutive legal hunting days. A Maryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp is required to hunt migratory game birds and a Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp is required to hunt waterfowl and coots. A Furbearer Permit is required to hunt, chase, or trap furbearers. The Hunter Education and Safety Requirement does not apply to hunting only waterfowl with this license. Stamps Needed to Hunt in MarylandMaryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp $9.00This stamp is required for all persons who hunt migratory game birds (coots, doves, rails, snipe, waterfowl, and woodcock), including persons not required to have a hunting license and holders of senior hunting licenses. Hunters must possess the printed receipt showing proof of purchase of the Maryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp while hunting migratory game birds. Hunters are not required to sign and attach the Maryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp to their license. The Harvest Information Program (HIP) permit (see Migratory Game Birds) is issued in conjunction with the Maryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp. Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp
From department sport license agents, Department of Natural Resources online licensing, by phone (1-855-855-3906), and Department of Natural Resources Licensing and Registration Service Centers $27.00
This stamp (the federal duck stamp) is required for all waterfowl hunters, including those who are not required to purchase a hunting license. Hunters under the age of 16 are exempt. The federal duck stamp must be signed in ink to be valid. If you order your stamp online, http://duckstamp.com, you will receive a purchase code. If you purchase your stamp from a sport license agent, Department of Natural Resources online licensing, or a Department of Natural Resources Licensing and Registration Center, you will receive a printed receipt. Both the purchase code and the printed receipt will be accepted as evidence of the purchase for 45 days and must be possessed while hunting waterfowl and coots. The paper stamp will be mailed to the purchaser. The proof of purchase will expire after 45 days after which purchaser must then possess the stamp, signed in ink, while hunting waterfowl and coots. The federal duck stamp does not have to be attached to the hunting license. Missing Federal Duck Stamp: If you do not receive your federal duck stamp within 2-3 weeks after purchase via Department of Natural Resources online or by phone, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-800-852-4897.
Archery Stamp*Required to hunt deer during Archery Season with valid hunting license. This includes crossbows.
Resident Archery Stamp $6.00
Nonresident Archery Stamp $25.00
Muzzleloader Stamp*Required to hunt deer during Muzzleloader Season with valid hunting license. This includes archery hunters that hunt with vertical bows and crossbows during the Muzzleloader Season.
Resident Muzzleloader Stamp $6.00
Nonresident Muzzleloader Stamp $25.00
Bonus Antlered Deer Stamp*One bonus antlered white-tailed deer may be taken during one weapon season in REGION B ONLY. The Bonus Antlered Deer Stamp must be purchased prior to pursuing a bonus antlered deer. Bonus Antlered Deer Stamps may not be used to take sika deer.
Resident Bonus Antlered Deer Stamp $10.00
Nonresident Bonus Antlered Deer Stamp $25.00
*Hunters entitled to hunt without a license do not need to purchase Archery, Muzzleloader, or Bonus Antlered Deer Stamps. Hunters with a Senior Lifetime Consolidated License do not need to purchase Archery or Muzzleloader Stamps but must purchase Bonus Antlered Deer Stamps to take bonus antlered deer. Education RequirementsHunter Education And Safety RequirementTo hunt or purchase a hunting license in Maryland, State law requires:
Presentation of a Certificate of Competency in Firearms and Hunting Safety (required of all first time hunters), or
Certification that you held a hunting license issued prior to July 1, 1977, or
Certification that you hunted on private property prior to July 1, 1977, and were legally exempt from purchasing a hunting license, or
Certification that you are purchasing a nonresident license and will only hunt waterfowl.
Exception: Compliance with the Hunter Education and Safety Requirement does not apply to those who are hunting only waterfowl with a Nonresident 3-day Waterfowl and Small Game License (see below) and those shooting under a Regulated Shooting Area Hunting License who are not hunting wild or free flying captive-raised mallards. See below (Regulated Shooting Area Hunting License) and Migratory Game Birds (Regulated Shooting Area Requirements).
Note: RESIDENT Junior Hunters (under 16 years of age) are entitled to a one-time FREE annual hunting license, Archery Stamp, and Muzzleloader Stamp upon successful completion of a Hunter Education Course and submission of the appropriate application to any Department of Natural Resources Licensing and Registration Service Center. Trapper Education RequirementAny person who is trapping or attempting to trap furbearers (beaver, coyote, fisher, gray fox, long-tailed weasel, mink, muskrat, opossum, raccoon, red fox, river otter, and skunk), under the authority of a Furbearer Permit must first obtain a certificate of trapper education from the Department (or a designee of the Department), except that the certificate is not required if the person held a Furbearer Permit during the 2006-07 trapping season (prior to August 1, 2007). Trapper education courses are held statewide. Any similar certificate issued by another state is acceptable as complying with the educational requirements if the privileges are reciprocal for Maryland residents. See Trapper Education Requirement.
Special Permits for Hunters With DisabilitiesUniversal Disability Pass (formerly known as Hunt From a Vehicle Permit)Hunters with mobility impairments may obtain a special permit so they may hunt from a vehicle. Applications are available from Department of Natural Resources Regional Wildlife & Heritage Service Offices. A physician must certify your permit application. See the Public Hunting Landsor visit the department's Access for All website for public hunting areas that can assist hunters with mobility impairments. Click here for information about how to apply for the Universal Disability Pass, which has replaced the Hunt from Vehicle Permit. Crossbow Permits are no longer required in MarylandComplimentary POW-DAV Hunting LicensesA complimentary lifetime hunting license is available to Maryland residents certified as a former prisoner of war or a 100% service connected disabled American veteran (Veterans Administration documentation required). The lifetime license is available only at Department of Natural Resources Licensing and Registration Service Centers and includes the bow stamp, muzzleloader stamp, and furbearer permit. The Maryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp is not part of the Complimentary License. The Migratory Game Bird Stamp, Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp, and the Big Game Harvest Record are required for each year and can be obtained from a Department of Natural Resources Licensing and Registration Service Center a sport license agent, or online at: https://compass.dnr.maryland.gov/dnrcompassportal Hunters in the Armed ForcesMaryland residents serving in the United States Armed Forces and stationed in Maryland must purchase a Resident Hunting License before hunting, unless they are on official leave and possess a copy of their official leave orders. Maryland residents serving in the United States Armed Forces, while hunting during official leave in Maryland, do not need to purchase a hunting license, deer stamps, or Department of Natural Resources Managed Hunt Permit; however, they must purchase a Maryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp, a federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp, and a Furbearer Permit. You must possess a copy of your official leave orders while hunting and comply with the Hunter Education and Safety Requirement. Any nonresident serving in the United States Armed Forces whose duty station is in Maryland must purchase a Resident Hunting License before hunting. Any nonresident serving in the United States Armed Forces who is on leave in Maryland, but not stationed in Maryland, must purchase a Nonresident Hunting License before hunting. Who May Hunt Without a LicenseIt is unlawful to hunt without a valid hunting license in your possession unless you are exempt from this requirement as described in this section. You are not required to possess a hunting license or stamps (except the Maryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp, the Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp, and a Furbearer Permit) if you are:
A resident of Maryland (and their spouse) who owns property and who hunts only on that property. This also applies to: (1) the landowner’s children and grandchildren if they are under the age of 16; and (2) the landowner’s children and grandchildren, and the spouse of the children or grandchildren, regardless of age, if the child, grandchild, or their spouse, lives on the property, has worked on the property for at least 30 days during the preceding 12 months, or manages the property. Each person must individually qualify under these criteria. To qualify for this exemption, a landowner does not need to live on the property but must be able to prove ownership.
A person (and spouse) who: (1) holds land under lease for agricultural purposes (or a sharecropper); and (2) lives on this farmland; and (3) hunts only on this farmland. This also applies to: (1) the lessee’s children and grandchildren if they are under the age of 16; and (2) the lessee’s children and grandchildren, and their spouses, if the child, grandchild, or spouse of the child or grandchild, lives on the property, has worked on the property for at least 30 days during the preceding 12 months, or manages the property.
A nonresident (and spouse) who owns a contiguous piece of farmland that is in both Virginia and Maryland may hunt on the Maryland portion of the property without a Maryland hunting license, if the person’s primary residence is on the Virginia portion of the property. This also applies to the owner’s children and grandchildren if they are under the age of 16.
A Maryland resident serving in the United States Armed Forces while on official leave in Maryland (whether stationed in Maryland or outside Maryland). You must possess a copy of official leave orders while hunting. See Hunters in the Armed Forces in the following text.
A person serving in the United States Armed Forces who has a service–connected disability and possesses a valid military identification while hunting.
A person who is a retired former member of the United States Armed Services and hunting on farmland that is in active farming status and owned by the person or the person’s spouse, child, child’s spouse, parent, grandparent, sibling, niece or nephew. A retired former member who hunts on farmland without a hunting license must possess the retired military identification card and written permission from the owner of the farm property specifying the relationship of the person to the owner of the property.