Fishing Isle Of Palms

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Left early in the morning to get out on the flats as the tide fell. Found lots of bait with plenty of redfish sloshing among it. Posted up and put out chunks of cut mullet and watched them get picked up twice, only to be dropped. Watched a rod snap over and the third fish stayed buttoned. A few minutes later, Charles brought a nice nine pound redfish alongside the boat. The biggest fish he had ever caught! As the water rose, we switched over to popping corks and mud minnows and had a blast messing with bluefish and small trout.

Charleston Fishing Report – May 2014

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Charleston Fishing Report - April 2014

“Wind again?” was a familiar refrain over the past few weeks. Even blustery weather couldn’t hold back warmer water temperatures and the arrival of bait. Seasonal species like spanish mackerel, shark and bluefish were right behind. In spite of the breezy days, anglers have a lot to look forward to over the coming months.

As water clarity slowly improves, redfish are eating artificial plastic lures, especially those that mimic the glass minnows so abundant in our waters. Zman’s 3 ¾” streakz in smokey shad is an excellent choice. I pair this lure with a 1/8oz. jighead. When possible I try to bump this lure along the bottom then pick it up sharply once or twice with a flick of my wrist. Often, the fish will crush it as it pops up.

It’s that time of year for topwater trout action at first light. Heddon’s Super Spook Jr. in their silver mullet color works great but my favorite is the chartreuse and black. Vary retrieve speeds as you work these lures back to the boat. Here’s a lure that you should reel tight to the fish before raising your rod tip. Good luck with that as a violent boil erupts around your lure!

Spanish mackerel and bluefish are beginning to show up especially in the harbor. If you find schools of fish slashing across the surface, throw reflective casting jigs and reel them quickly through the school. Alternatively, if you know fish are present but not up top, try trolling Clark Spoons at different depths and different speeds. Remember to check your leader often as it only takes catching a few of these teethy fish to cut through it.

With the warmer water temperatures, sharks have returned to our waters. You’ll start to see the fins of bonnethead sharks slicing through the water as they seek out prey. Chunks of blue crab or live shrimp both work well on these predators. Fishing for sharks can be a great way to get younger anglers involved as sharks are usually hungry and put up great fights.

See you on the water!

 

Capt. Geoff Bennett operates Charleston Charter Fishing providing fly fishing and light tackle 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 captain@charlestoncharterfishing.com.

 

Windy, Windy Day Fishing

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Charleston Fishing Charters

Yes, we actually fished today. In the face of 20+ winds out of the NorthEast, Bob and Rob decided that we would give it our best shot. The only option was a system of creeks that would provide us with some protection. Turns out they made the right call! Found a healthy bite for most of the charter with redfish up to eight pounds. Only mud minnows on jigheads bumped along the bottom produced fish. The redfish turned their noses at mud minnows under corks and cut mullet. A really pleasant surprise in a week of tough weather.

Seabrook Island Fishing

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Seabrook Island Fishing

Finally, a wonderfully sunny day with moderate wind! The Negrete family sure brought the good weather with them. Started at high tide and found no takers on mud minnows under corks. Once the water came out of the grass at mid-tide, the redfish would smoke the cut mullet in front of their path. Bella’s 26″ redfish was the highlight of a happy family trip.

Charleston Fishing Report – April 2014

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Charleston Fishing Report - April 2014

Lots of cold days and nights during March kept thoughts of traditional Spring fishing on the back burner. With highs in the 70s forecast over the next ten days, let’s hope we have turned the corner. Warmer water temperatures should bring out the trout bite while anglers can still target redfish in big schools.

Unlike most years, redfish remain in their wintertime schools that can number as many as a hundred fish. They are still spooky but becoming more aggressive as the arrival of bait turns them into predators again. The easiest way to target these reds is using cut bait or better yet freshly cracked blue crab fished on the bottom. Be patient and let the schools come to you. If they think eating is their idea, they’ll most likely take the bait.

As trout become more active, popping corks cast along grass banks and over oyster beds will be a good bet paired with mud minnows and live shrimp. I usually use a 18”-24” leader and a size 1 circle hook. When working the popping cork, always try to keep slack out of your line and when that cork drops just reel tight to set the hook. You’ll find that the circle hook will do most of the work for you.

For both redfish and trout, mud minnows paired with a jighead have been working well especially around docks and structure. I’ll use a 1/8-1/4oz. jighead and hook the mud minnow under the bottom lip and out through the top lip. Work these baits slowly and try to bump them along the bottom where oftentimes you’ll get hit as you lift the rod tip.

Redfish remaining in big schools has been a boon to flyfishermen eager to stalk these fish on the flats. To avoid spooking them, we’ve sometimes been casting well in front of a moving school and only begin moving the fly with quick small strips once the school is almost on top of it. On recent charters, black wiggler flies have been the most productive.

See you on the water!

Capt. Geoff Bennett operates Charleston Charter Fishing providing fly fishing and light tackle 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 captain@charlestoncharterfishing.com.

Fishing Folly Beach

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Fishing Folly Beach

We left out of Folly Beach this morning hoping to find some shelter from forecasted strong NE winds. Tucked away in a corner with the wind and current together, we found a great bite while pitching bait around structure. The return of cracked blue crab proved to be popular with the redfish and drew the most hits. Once the tide turned and the wind went against the current, the whole place shut down. However, not before Mike landed a nice ten pound redfish, his biggest ever!

Isle Of Palms Fishing Charters

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Isle Of Palms Fishing Charters

Fishing a fast falling tide, we started out with docks but the water was rushing out too quickly. Once the water slowed down, we moved out onto the flats and set out cut mullet and mud minnows on the bottom. As a school of reds moved over the baits, the mullet rod twinged and then the mud minnow rod snapped over! After a long fight on a light rod, Miller brought the redfish alongside the boat. It weighed in at a healthy ten pounds and swam away healthy.

Charleston Fishing

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Charleston Fishing

We started the charter with one big redfish, a 9lb. beauty, and the trip just picked up from there. Our next stop produced several reds and a weakfish from under a dock. Moved to another dock and caught at least a dozen more reds with multiple double hookups. Everything caught on mud minnows either on the bottom or on jig heads. As we headed for home, we left them biting!

Spooky Redfish

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Charleston Redfish

Gary, a regular client, loves to be casting as much as possible during his charters. After throwing artificials at hundreds of redfish only to see them sprint away, we agreed that putting out cut bait and waiting might be the best option. Boy, did it ever pay off! Our first fish was a huge 31″ redfish and was Gary’s biggest redfish ever. With this beauty in the bag, we switched back over to casting around docks with mud minnows on jigheads and caught smaller redfish for the rest of the charter.

Charleston Fishing Report – March 2014

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Charleston Fishing Report - March 2014

It has been a long cold Winter but warmer times have started to come around. During many charters, it never got much out of the 30s and those were hard earned fish. After a run of days with highs in the 70s, it’s easy to get excited about fishing again! Rising water temperatures and the return of bait should provide plenty of action.

Redfish remain in massive schools numbering in the hundreds as they try to avoid dolphins and stay warm. You’ll find these schools on mud flats as well as shallow banks that provide cover. On sunny days, redfish are especially drawn to the flats as the mud retains an extra few degrees of warmth. You’ll find the best fishing tends to be around low tide when these reds are balled up tight together.

During this time of year, these big schools of redfish can be wary and spook when a lure hits the water. When this happens, it’s best to soak some cut bait. I’ll put chunks of frozen mullet on size 3/0 circle hooks and just let it sit on the bottom until the redfish swim over it. Put your rod in the rod holder and resist the urge (if at all possible!) to set the hook when you see a fish begin to eat. The circle hook will do all the work for you and when your reel starts to sing you are in business.

It will be interesting to see if the trout bite starts in March based on how cold the past two months have been. Working artificial lures slowly across the bottom will be your best bet. Plastic lures that are 3″-4″ long and imitate small minnows are a good choice. For color, stick with grey and silver hues that most resemble bait. Paired with a 1/4oz. jighead, the combination should be very effective when the trout return.

This a great time of year for fly fishing as a softly presented fly won’t send a school of redfish fleeing for cover. Sight fishing abounds and stalking a school of a hundred plus redfish is so exciting you almost fall off the bow with anticipation. Smaller flies in lighter colors are working best and a clouser minnow is a fine example. Remember when the fish hits, resist the temptation to lift your rod tip and strip strike instead.

See you on the water!

 

Capt. Geoff Bennett operates Charleston Charter Fishing providing fly fishing and light tackle 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 captain@charlestoncharterfishing.com.