North Myrtle Beach/Little River – September 26, 2019
Patrick, of Captain Smiley Fishing Charters, reports that water temperatures are around 83 degrees and there are massive schools of finger mullet in the ICW and its tributaries, but it has been hard to find any shrimp.
The flounder fishery is closed to harvest in NC, but on both sides of the border there is still excellent flounder action. There have been flatfish ranging from 3-6 lbs. The key to catching flounder is still fishing in places where there is an abundance of mullet and current, like around flats and grass. Tide does not appear to make a huge difference, as long as mullet and current are present. Both finger mullet and Gulps will produce.
The redfish population seems to be in excellent shape, with good numbers of fish and a broad range of sizes being caught. Inside the creeks you can find groups of redfish that run from under 15” up to about 28”, and these fish are plentiful. Live mullet fished on a 1/4 oz. jig head will produce the most bites, and the redfish are around grass and oyster beds on the outgoing tides.
There is another school of red drum hanging around the jetties, with these fish running 25-35”. Cut or live bait dropped down on a Carolina rig on the outgoing tide is the best option at the jetties.
Black drum fishing has been good at the Tillman docks, especially while using Carolina-rigged fresh cut shrimp on the bottom in 15-20’ of water on moving tides. There have also been good catches in Bonaparte Creek in 5-10’ of water.
Larry, of Voyager Fishing Charters, reports that fishing at the Gulf Stream has been productive. Those dropping to the bottom have landed grouper, beeliners, African pompano, grunts, porgies, triggerfish, and amberjacks. A mix of fresh cut minnows and squid have worked best.
Nearshore, the king bite has heated up, with more quality fish being landed. Trolling Drone spoons and slow trolling live baits has produced fish in the 25+ lb. range. A few false albacore have also been in the mix.
Just off the beach, the spanish bite has remained steady. Trolling Clarkspoons has been the main way to land high numbers of fish. Sharks are also feeding well around nearshore structure, as anglers using large cut and chunk baits have hooked into plenty of action.
Cameron, of Little River Fishing Fleet, reports that the fall king bite has started to move in close to the beach. Slow trolling menhaden has produced fish in the 25+ lb. range.
False albacore and spanish have been schooled up just off the beach. Casting jigs and small Gotcha plugs have been the best way to get in on the action.
The bull red drum have started to make their way into the area. Many anglers have had success fishing both large cut and live baits on the bottom around nearshore structure.
Kyle, of Speckulator Inshore Fishing Charters, reports that red and black drum have been mixed together in the creeks. Fresh shrimp and finger mullet pinned to a Carolina rig have worked the best for both.
Those searching for flounder have picked up a few fish around Tubbs Inlet and in the waterway. Fishing with live mullet on a Carolina rig around docks and marsh banks has been the ticket to hooking the flatfish.
A good push of bull red drum have made their way to the Little River jetties. Drifting with cut and live baits has done the job when looking for these trophy fish.
Michael, of Cherry Grove Pier, reports that pier anglers have had good catches of whiting, pompano, and black drum. Those fishing the bottom are also hooking some smaller red drum, with slot fish mixed in here and there.
Gotcha plugs and metal casting jigs are pulling in some spanish and small bluefish.