Left at the crack of dawn in hopes of getting as much fishing in before a very high tide carried everyone into the grass. Mud minnows under corks proved to be the ticket and we caught many nice trout. We also caught some pinfish and bluefish which would be invaluable later. Once slack tide approached, we took advantage of the light winds and headed out to the inlet. No one carried about cracked blue crab but when we cut the heads off the pinfish the rods started snapping over. Caught bull redfish up to 40 inches and headed home happy!
Fall fishing is supposed to be great and so far this year has lived up to expectations! An abundance of bait has made for happy and hungry fish. The bite should keep getting better as cooler temperatures will remind the redfish and trout that they better eat now before all the shrimp and mullet disappear. Get out on the water and take advantage of this prime time!
Redfish will begin to school and form large groups of fish making sight fishing on the flats very exciting. Artificial lures that mimic the baitfish these reds are chasing become quite effective. Lures colored silver and blue work well. My favorite combination is a 4-5” jerk shad artificial lure rigged on a size #3/0 flutter hook. These hooks not only provide great action but also land quietly too.
Artificials can also be used with confidence for trout. Try paddle tail plastic lures paired with a 1/4oz. jighead. I attach the jighead with a loop knot to give the lure even more action. Again, we’ve been using artificials with colors that resemble the baitfish in the water. To make your lure even more attractive, try putting a piece of shrimp on the hook. You can use pieces of live or frozen shrimp and it will put a scent trail on your lure that is hard to resist.
Even with artificials becoming more effective, keep tossing those popping corks! Mud minnows, live shrimp and artificial shrimp have been working well when suspended about 18″-24″ below the cork. Redfish and trout alike will eat these baits as they pass by suspended in the water column. Corks have been working best fished along grassy banks at mid and high tide.
Fly fishermen eagerly await the phenomenon of schooling redfish. On clear days, you can see these fish swimming in circles with their golden backs flashing in the sun. Flies in shades of red and copper with a bit of flash are an easy selection. Take your time when approaching the schools and when you make your first shot make sure to cast to the edges so as not to spook them.
See you on the water!
Capt. Geoff Bennett operates Charleston Charter Fishing providing light tackle and fly fishing charters. Clients choose from a full menu of fly rods, artificial and live bait fishing options with charters tailored to their desires. USCG licensed and insured, Capt. Bennett is committed to providing a safe and enjoyable charter to anglers of all skill levels and ages. For more information, call Capt. Bennett at 843-324-3332, visit his website at www.charlestoncharterfishing.com or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.