Offshore Fishing


Springtime is upon us here in the Cape Fear area, and with that comes one of my favorite seasons to be offshore fishing! As we get more and more consistent warm weather, we see our springtime fishery begin to blossom. Water temperatures in the gulf stream right now are lingering in the low 70’s which makes for world class Wahoo, Tuna, and Sailfish fishing. The wahoo fishing has stayed consistent most of the winter and as we move into the spring you can still target them while catching several other species that make their annual migration past the Cape Fear coast. For our wahoo fishing we’re still using #9 AFW hard wire with either an 8/0 or 9/0 Mustad J hook. Our spreads for this time of year are beginning to go 50/50, what we mean by that is half of our spread will be wire targeting the wahoo specifically, while the other half will be fluorocarbon targeting the tunas or sailfish. With the water temperatures beginning to warm up we’re always keeping an eye out for the yellowfin tuna to make their showing here off our beaches. Yellowfins can be particularly wary of a wire leader; therefore, we’re fishing fluorocarbon on our longer baits where we think might have the best opportunity for a tuna bite. Generally, you can fish 80–90-pound fluorocarbon for the tunas and be just fine, we prefer Seaguar or Yo-Zuri Hybrid as our leaders and again an 8/0 or 9/0 hook. For bait we’re still fishing medium Baitmaster ballyhoo, they seem to do the trick year-round in the gulf stream for just about all species.

 If the trolling bite isn’t going your way on your next trip don’t overlook springtime bottom fishing on the break. African Pompanos are still hanging around on a lot of the ledges in the 140–160-foot depth range which is where you will find most of your wahoo and tuna action as well. Dropping for a pompano or grouper is a great idea in the spring when looking for a change of pace. You can target the pompanos on one of Bluewater Candy’s Roscoe jigs, not only are they a killer for African pompanos but other offshore bottom dwellers can’t stand them either. Lastly when looking for a fun fight and great table fare, don’t forget the triggerfish. They spend a lot of their time in the spring and summer still on those offshore ledges and are a great way to end the day on the way home. For the triggerfish we recommend using a 3 or 4 hook bottom rig with squid for bait. Triggerfish are inherently aggressive so if you get it down there amongst them, you’re almost always guaranteed a bite! With all these different options for offshore fishing in the spring it’s a great time to get out on the water and enjoy the fishery our beach has to offer this time of year. Don’t forget to stop by the shop and ask us for all the up-to-date fishing reports and how-to tips on what tackle to use. We stay fully stocked year-round on all offshore tackle and are glad to answer any questions you may have about when are where to use specific things.

With the warmer months to come Intracoastal Angler is fully stocked with all your springtime fishing apparel! Having the right gear to be out on the water all day is essential, especially this time of year where the mornings can be chilly but by noon it’s up to 80 degrees. We’ve just received all our springtime apparel from Free Fly, Sims, Pelagic, Aftco, and many others so be sure to stop by and check out our new lineup. We are also heavily stocked in Xtra-Tuff boots in all sizes and colors, just in case that springtime shower catches you out on the water. Whether your needs are tackle, apparel, or both Intracoastal Angler is sure to have you covered!

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