Carolina Beach – August 3, 2017
Kevin, of Island Tackle and Hardware, reports that inshore fishing has provided anglers with plenty of action. The flounder bite remains steady in the Cape Fear River and around docks in the waterway. Fishing a live mullet or pogey on a Carolina rig has been the best way to land limits of fish, and focusing in on deeper water pockets near structure has produced the best bites.
Redfish have also been feeding well along the docks. Mud minnows fished on the bottom around low tide have been the ticket.
Around the Snow’s Cut Bridge, those dropping live fiddler crabs to the bottom have been hooking up with sheepshead and black drum. Targeting these fish is best near slack tide. They’ve also been holding around area docks with deeper holes.
In the surf, lower and under-slot redfish have been landed while fishing fresh shrimp on the bottom. Whiting and croaker are also providing surf anglers with some action.
Just off the beach, spanish have been holding in the 1-5 mile range. Trolling Clarkspoons has been the best way to target the spanish, but when they are feeding on top, casting a Stingsilver works great.
In the 8-10 mile range, smaller kings and a few scattered mahi have been landed. Trolling smaller cigar minnows or slow trolling live menhaden has been the best bet.
Out to the 15+ mile range, larger kings (in the 20 lb. class) have been landed. A few gaffer mahi have been mixed in.
Christian, of Seahawk Inshore Fishing Charters, reports that anglers targeting redfish are finding a consistent bite in the shallow water creeks in the lower Cape Fear River. Some days have produced double digit numbers. Most fish are hitting a live finger mullet pinned to a Carolina rig near oyster structure. Z-Man and Gulp plastics are working well, too.
A few flounder and speckled trout have been mixed in with the reds. Most of the flounder have been keepers and are falling for live mullet on the bottom
Out in the river, schools of jack crevalle and ladyfish have been feeding on top. Throwing topwater plugs and soft plastics has been a great way to hook into some fast-paced action.
Greg, of TopWater Guide Co., reports that the speckled trout fishing has picked up in the Cape Fear River around docks and marsh islands. Rigging a live mud minnow on a Carolina rig has worked best, but fishing a Gulp shrimp off the bottom on a 1/4 oz. jig head has worked well, too. Anglers who get an early start can also find success tossing topwater lures (like the Zara Spook Jr.) around marsh islands and oyster beds.
The redfish bite has picked up a little. Most fish have been in the 18-23” range, with the occasional upper-slot fish. Live mud minnows or finger mullet pinned on a Carolina rig have worked best around deeper water structure (like docks). In the flats and creeks, topwater plugs and soft plastics have been the best way to create action.
Flounder have been holding around the docks near Carolina Beach, but most anglers are catching far more short fish than keepers. Covering lots of water and working live mullet and pogies near ledges and drops in 8-12′ of water has been the key to landing a few keepers.
Rod, of OnMyWay Charters, reports that anglers trolling along the beachfront with silver Clarkspoons on #1 planers have landed spanish well into the double digits. Using weights and a minimum 30′ of leader has been the key to boating fish in the 2-3 lb. class.
Offshore in the 12-25 mile range, kings have been feeding well. The size of fish has ranged from throwbacks to 30 lb. fish. A few mahi and barracudas have also been in the mix.
On the bottom in this range, gag grouper and black sea bass have been hitting live and cut baits.
The 35-45 mile range has been holding beeliners, scamp and red grouper, and black sea bass.
Out at the Gulf Stream, anglers are landing wahoo, mahi, and kings.
Jesse, of Ocean Stinger Fishing Charters, reports that out at the Gulf Stream, mahi and blackfin tuna are feeding well. Targeting clean blue water has been the key to locating good numbers of fish. The mahi have fallen for small trolled ballyhoo, and the blackfins have keyed in on small bait-less UV skirt rigs like Fathom Half Pints and Sea Vixen lures. The best colors have been black/purple, blue/white, and green/white.
Nearshore, trolling pink/silver and silver #00 Clarkspoons on #1 planers has produced solid spanish numbers. Most of the fish have been holding in the 1-5 mile range.
There has been a steady king bite in the 5-10 mile range. The majority of the kings have been undersized, but a few keeper fish have come off the rods set 100-150′ behind the boat.
Paul, of Kure Beach Pier, reports that fishing the bottom with fresh shrimp has produced good numbers of croaker and whiting. A few sheepshead have been landed around the pilings.
Those casting Gotcha plugs from the pier have connected with spanish in the early morning and late evening hours.
Bobby, of Carolina Beach Pier, reports that a few keeper speckled trout have been landed from the pier. Using live shrimp has been the best way to hook up with the specks.
Those fishing the bottom with fresh shrimp have connected with flounder and croaker.