Nearshore Fishing


Summertime fishing is here! The temperature on the beach is on the rise and in the 80’s currently. Beaches can be crowded this time of year but that doesn’t mean that the fishing just outside the breakers isn’t still good! We’re seeing great catches of pompano, flounder, and sea mullet from the beach as of lately. For the pompano and sea mullet we’re noticing the most consistent action using a traditional Hi-Lo rig with either fresh shrimp or Sand fleas. The sand fleas have that tough outer shell that allow them to ward of some of the smaller fish that you don’t want to catch but are no match when a pompano or sea mullet comes along. Both surf species are fun to catch and even better table fare. As we move off the beach a mile or so we still find that the Spanish mackerel and bluefish are biting great. Consistent catches of Spanish mackerel are being reported all along the coast between Carolina Beach and Wrightsville beach. As always you can’t go wrong with the tried and true 00 Clarkspoon in silver. Paired with a #1 Old Salty planer you’re well on your way to a great catch of Spanish mackerel! Be sure to come by the shop and we can get you fully rigged up with all the stuff you need to have a great time catching these toothy nearshore fish.

Pushing on off the beach into the 5–15-mile range you’re sure to see some King Mackerels and perhaps some Mahi-Mahi. The warmer water temperatures draw the Mahi inshore this time of year and reports are coming in of a few being caught within 15 miles of the beach. For the Mahi-Mahi we like to use one of Bluewater Candy’s Ballyhoo rigs, it comes ready to go with leader, hook, and skirt all in one. Grab a pack of Ballyhoo on the way out the door and you’ll be ready to go chase those inshore Mahi-Mahi. As for the King Mackerels we are using a couple different methods to target them. One being a live bait rig by Bluewater Candy, this allows you to fish a live menhaden or bluefish behind the boat on a wire leader preventing the king mackerel from biting you off. Secondly, we’ll use a Bluewater Candy dead bait rig, this is great for covering ground at a faster speed and you don’t have to catch the live bait. By rigging a cigar minnow on the weighted head of the rig you can effectively troll at 5-7 MPH and catch king mackerels, barracudas, and other toothy species. The nearshore bottom fishing this time of year can also provide a fun change in pace to trolling. Within the 15–20-mile range you can still catch groupers, black sea bass, and American red snapper this time of year, all of which make for a great fight and even better eating! For the bottom critters this time of year we have been fishing a Bluewater candy bottom rig. They make a handful of different ones depending on what you’re targeting, we prefer the grouper rig for groupers and snappers and then going to the black sea bass rig for just about all other bottom dwellers. With all these options for summertime nearshore fishing don’t forget to swing by the shop before getting on the water, we’ll be sure to fill you in on all the up-to-date tactics and reports to get you headed in the right direction with the right tackle!

 With the summer heat being as brutal as it can be don’t forget to swing by the shop and check out all our summertime apparel brands. We’ve got new arrivals from Free Fly, Simms, Anetik and many others! All these brands make top of the line sun protection clothing including sun shirts and pants. Like one of our customers always said, “These shirts will keep you warm when you’re cold and cool when you’re hot!” Truer words have never been spoken, so next time you’re sunburnt after a long day on the water swing by and check out some of our sun protection apparel for next time. Lastly, we’ve got new arrivals from Smith Optics and Bajio Sunglasses, not to mention our extensive selection of Costa Del Mar we’ve got you covered when it comes to eye protection on the water!


Tight lines and we’ll see you on the water!