Sarah Gagliardo

North Myrtle – Winter 2016 – 2017

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Patrick, of Captain Smiley Fishing Charters, reports that with water in the mid-50s, the speckled trout bite is great and should continue until at least January. MirrOlures and curly tail grubs on 1/4 oz. jig heads work great on the trout, and they seem to also favor artificial shrimp baits, like DOA and Vudu. Those who enjoy fly fishing should get out with their rod and throw clouser minnows when you can find the fish. Since most baits are small in the water right now, anglers have a great chance of hooking winter trout on the fly.

As the temperatures continue to drop, redfish will move back into skinny water where it’s warmer. Look for schooling redfish around docks and oyster beds. Throwing a 1/4 oz. jig head with scented bait, such as Gulp, should connect you with the fish, although cut mullet and shrimp will work, too.

Drew Gantt, Capt. Nick Palombi, and Paul Pancake, of Myrtle Beach, with a wahoo they caught fishing out of North Myrtle Beach with Low Country Fishing Charters.

Drew Gantt, Capt. Nick Palombi, and Paul Pancake, of Myrtle Beach, with a wahoo they caught fishing out of North Myrtle Beach with Low Country Fishing Charters.

Mark, of Shallow Minded Guide Fishing, reports that the speckled trout bite is hot in the North Myrtle Beach area. Anglers wishing to connect should throw Trout Tricks and Vudu shrimp.

Redfish are in the same areas and may be hooked when targeting the trout.

Those fishing inshore with cut bait should hook black drum, especially on shrimp, and don’t be surprised to also snag a rat red or two in the same areas as the black drum.

Tyler Shytle (age 12), of Winston-Salem, with a redfish caught in Little River. The fish fell for a 3” Gulp shrimp under a popping cork.

Tyler Shytle (age 12), of Winston-Salem, with a redfish caught in Little River. The fish fell for a 3” Gulp shrimp under a popping cork.

David, of Low Country Fishing Charters, reports that the speckled trout fishing is still great in the backwaters. Live shrimp are gone from the area, but artificials will catch them. Throw Z-Man paddletails, Trout Tricks, or Swimming Trout Tricks on a 1/4 oz. jig head to connect with the trout.

The offshore wahoo bite is hot right now in the Stream, and they are biting on skirted ballyhoo and Ilanders in purple/black, red/black, and blue/white. Use planers or 2-3 oz. trolling weights to get the bait down for a better bite. Finding the temperature breaks where there are color changes is the key to finding the fish.

Bottom fishing is great in 65-80’ of water, with grouper and vermillion reported. Keeper black sea bass are in the 15-20 mile range, and anglers have landed fish between 17-19”.

The inshore bite in the winter should be mostly trout, as well as red and black drum. Once the water gets really cold, the trout should taper off and thin out. The redfish will resume their winter patterns, though, and tuck up in creeks, sometimes in water as shallow as a foot or two. The black drum will be found in deeper holes.

nmb-sipe-trout

Larry, of Voyager Fishing Charters, reports that the nearshore fishing has been wonderful, with the party boats returning from half-day trips with black sea bass, porgies, and small bluefish.

The boats that headed to the Gulf Stream bottom fishing have connected with big vermilion, grunts, triggerfish, amberjacks, and grouper.

Those trolling offshore with Drone spoons have connected with falsies and king mackerel.

The boats will be running through the winter, trolling for wahoo in the colder months, and dropping down a line to bottom fish for black sea bass, vermilion, and triggerfish.

 

Matt, of Cherry Grove Pier, reports that with the cold water, most anglers are catching panfish like whiting, croaker, and perch, although the occasional small black drum has been hooked. Pufferfish have started to appear, and most of the fish are being caught on Carolina rigs baited with shrimp and cut mullet.

The pier will stay open through the winter months, and anglers can expect the pufferfish bite to increase, along with sharks (such as dogfish, bonnet heads, and small sandbar sharks) to be caught through the colder months.