ProFishNC Charters Fishing Report for Topsail Beach, Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Beach & Wilmington, NC July 28th – August 17th
We are officially in the HEAT of the Summer and with that comes the necessary adjustment to fish the Summertime Patterns. There are LOTS of Fish around and many Fishing Charter Options to choose from!
With the water now HOT in the backwater reaching almost 90 at low tide some days you will need to find deepwater and nearshore structure to find the fish (unless you have a large amount of rain that both cools the surface waters and creates an upwelling offshore of cooler water that then pushes in the backwaters as we have experienced 3 times this year by my count. This upwelling occurs when the rainwater reached a tipping point where it sinks causing the cooler sub-surface water to rise to the top and push in the inshore waters as the tide flows. Ironically, as I write this report the backwater temps as of 12pm today was a “chilly” 74 degrees due to heavy rains and a nearshore cold water upwelling). Sure, you can catch Red Drum and Flounder in the Hot Water (and many days we catch a lot!); however, I do prefer to fish the deeper water of the inlets and offshore/ nearshore wrecks. There are A LOT of Inshore Gamefish holding in these areas currently and they are Feeding Heavy!
We have boated many larger “Over Slot” Red Drum this Summer along with Many Large Citation Sized Flounder including one Nice Trophy Aug 17th. The Larger Fish are taking the bigger live baits (I prefer using mullet or menhaden for the Larger Gamefish) around structure both inshore and nearshore.
Inshore Fishing (Backwaters, Inlets, Flats, Docks & Creeks):
Most days the Inshore fishing is good; however, when the HOT Water influences the backwaters, the fishing Inshore can slow some days (but don’t fret!!! When this happens Fish your favorite Deep Water Docks and the Mouths of the Inlets! There are LOTS of Fish to be caught inshore in the summer).
What’s Biting Right Now Inshore>>> Flounder, Drum, Speckled Trout (*yes, Specks are biting!), Black Drum, Sheepshead and of course… more Lizard Fish than you can stand! LOL
Inlet Fishing: I am drifting the inlets with live baits on Carolina Rigs (2ot Circle Hooks) and have been producing a lot of flounder right now. Most of the Red Drum I am catching are on the docks and flats in the backwaters. The Sheepshead are BIG right now and are being caught along the Docks in the Intracoastal Waterway and Bridges with lots of structure.
Backwater Fishing: Lets not forget the Artificial Baits! I am using a lot of artificial baits as well inshore in the creeks and backwaters (it is key to work a lot of water and you will catch the fish!). The past few weeks we have been producing large numbers of Flounder with GULP Shrimp (Glow Color) and pinning them to a ½ – ¾ oz. Blue Water Candy Jighead.
Nearshore Bottom Fishing (out to 5 miles in 40 – 65 ft. of water):
What’s Biting Right Now>>> Big Flounder, Black Seabass, Grey Trout, Big Lemon Sharks, Spanish Mackerel, King Mackerel, Cobia and many other “reef complex” species.
Summertime Nearshore Bottom Fishing:
I have two strategies for Bottom Fishing Nearshore:
The First: Carolina Rigs with 40 lb. Fluorocarbon and 6ot Circle Hooks using BIG live baits. Find your structure or bottom topography that you are fishing on your depth finder/ sounder, compensate for your wind and find your drift. Let the Fish do the rest!!
The Second: I use a 2-4 oz. Spro Jig (depending on the current) and pin a big live or dead mullet or piece of cut bait to it and bouncing it off of the bottom on wrecks, reefs and live bottom.
Surprisingly, the past few weeks we have boated A LOT of Octopus while Bottom Fishing using this method within the 5 mile range… Its a Kid Favorite (myself included) as they are very versatile and entertaining creatures. Most octopus when released in the boat will climb up your boat gunnel and find the water…every time (as this one did!).
Note: BOTH of these methods can be used while at anchor or drifting and produce A Lot of Fish.
We are Booking for the Fall and many dates are filling up quickly! Give us a call and Lets Go Fishin’!
Capt. Trevor Smith