Wrightsville Beach – October 12, 2017
Matt, of Tex’s Tackle, reports that red and black drum, sheepshead, bluefish, and flounder are all biting consistently in and around area creeks, marshes, and docks.
The speckled trout bite, while improving, has been hit or miss. Most of the keepers have been hitting topwater plugs in the morning and MirrOlures or soft plastics once the sun comes up.
Over-slot reds, cobia, and tarpon can be found around the Masonboro jetty and nearshore ARs.
Surf fishing has seen slot and over-slot reds, flounder, and bluefish up to 4 lbs. going for cut mullet. Nice-sized pompano, black drum, and sea mullet are falling for shrimp, sand fleas, and Fishbites. In addition, there’s been a strong (if inconsistent) spot bite. A few speckled trout have been caught in the suds on MirrOlures and grubs, and blues, spanish, and false albacore have been coming within casting range.
Great spanish and false albacore fishing has continued just off the beach. Sight casting with Epoxy jigs and Shore Lures or trolling Clarkspoons behind lead weights or planers will bring in the most fish.
Flounder, gray trout, and big reds are still biting around nearshore ARs. Use live bait on a Carolina rig or a Gulp-tipped bucktail.
Kings (anywhere from 20-40 lbs.) have been found close to the beach and out to 20 miles. The kings are mostly biting live menhaden or bluefish, but dead bait rigs, Drone spoons, and Yo-Zuri Deep Divers will also do the trick.
This is a great time of year for nearshore gags, with live pinfish, cigar minnows, and grunts all pulling in fish within the 25 mile range.
A strong wahoo bite interspersed with some blackfins and sailfish has been happening in the Gulf Stream. High speed trolling lures will get the ‘hoos, while small plugs or ballyhoo skirted with Sea Witches will catch the blackfin and sailfish.
Arlen, of Intracoastal Angler, reports that speckled trout fishing is really heating up. Fish up to 6 lbs. are being found in the creek mouths and deeper marsh banks behind Masonboro and Figure Eight, mostly on the falling tide. Yo-Zuri 3DR minnows, D.O.A. shrimp, and Z-Man Trout Tricks are pulling in the most trout, but topwater baits are also working during early morning and late evening hours.
The red drum bite remains strong, and flounder fishing has been picking up. For the reds, both slot and over-slot (up to 45”) fish are coming from the marshes, inlets, and nearshore structure south of Wrightsville. The slot fish have been hitting jerk shads and Skitterwalks, while the big reds are going for cut mullet or menhaden on heavier Carolina rigs.
As for the flounder, fish up to 10 lbs. have been caught in creeks and around docks using live mullet or Gulp soft plastics.
Spots, pompano, sea mullet, spanish, blues, and red and black drum are all being pulled in from the beach. The mornings have been great for the spanish and bluefish, where 1 oz. casting jigs will do the trick. Most of the other fish have been caught at night using shrimp and Fishbites. The reds (some slot-sized, some below) have primarily been biting cut mullet or spot heads.
Just off the beach, spanish fishing is still going strong, and plenty of false albacore are biting as well. Trolling Clarkspoons and Deep Divers should produce.
The kings are biting out to 10 miles, where live menhaden and bluefish continue to pull in the most fish.
In 80-90’, gag grouper are showing up in force, biting dead cigar minnows and sardines. You’ve got a good shot of pulling in a big sea bass as well. Vermillion snapper and triggerfish are biting in 120’ of water.
Wahoo, dolphin, a few sailfish, and some blackfins have been biting in the Stream. Wahoo are taking Ilander/ballyhoo combos around the Same Ole and Steeples, and the blackfins are mostly hitting cedar plugs or Sea Vixen lures.
Jamie, of Seagate Charters, reports that speckled trout, red drum, false albacore, flounder, spanish, and cobia are currently being found around the Wrightsville Beach area. The trout are mostly hitting Z-Man and Blue Water Candy soft plastics, but suspending jerk baits and topwater baits (like the Zara Spook) are also doing the trick.
The red drum, false albacore, and cobia are biting around area inlets. The flounder are mostly hitting live mullet, while the big spanish are falling for traditional spoon and planer outfits, as well as casting jigs.
Trevor, of ProFishNC Charters, reports that a strong northeast wind has been pushing in a lot of bait (including flying fish right along the beach), making big fish easy to find. Plenty of 5 lb. class speckled trout are being found in strong current areas throughout local marshes. They’re falling for Z-Man soft plastics.
The king mackerel bite has been decent in the 7-10 mile range, while grouper are hitting hard between 10-14 miles.
Rick, of Living Waters Guide Service, reports that inshore fishing has been successful thanks to scattered spanish, false albacore, and kings.
Outside, there are blackfins, wahoo, and sailfish biting well.
Bottom fishing in the 100-140’ range has produced a number of gags and scamps, in addition to various other bottomfish.
Donny, of Johnnie Mercers Pier, reports that while the bite has been a little slow, it’s also been quite varied. False albacore, bluefish, spanish, and flounder have all been pulled in over the past few weeks, in addition to a handful of barracuda. Anglers have been seeing the most success using cut bait.
A 42” red drum was landed.