A 45-minute drive from Baltimore takes you to Maryland's Gunpowder River, a certified blue-ribbon waterway that runs from Pretty Boy Reservoir near Manchester all the way to Chesapeake Bay. The key trouting section is the first 11 miles, from the reservoir through Gunpowder Falls State Park. This section is a catch-and-release, artificials-only area but produces sizable holdover browns and rainbows. The upper reaches of the river are stocked in March, and the season is open then. Dry-fly anglers do well with size 14 and 16 Black Stoneflies. Good nymph patterns are size 14 and 16 Gold-Ribbed Hare's Ears, Prince Nymphs and Redbutts, and dropper rigs can be very effective. Spin-fishermen should try Mepps spinners, small Rapalas and silver spoons. Contact: Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Service (Tawes Building B-2, Taylor Avenue, Annapolis, MD 21401; 410-260-8281).