3 posts in this topic

The weather is still warm to hot and the fishing is the same, some days warm; some day we have hot fishing. The water temps in the area are getting to late July temps already in June; I believe this is going to give us a summer trend of fishing for most of the season. To the fishing report>>>.

We are still seeing so good numbers of Cobia around the area waters. The Cobia are around the inlets, shoals, and bars just off the beach. We are also still seeing them offshore a bit; around hard bottoms and reefs. Live bait has been the key to the bigger fish lately. Smaller Cobia have hit jigs around the inlets and ocean sand bars. Sight casting live bait to bigger Cobia just off the beach has produced some nice Cobia form Carolina Beach to Topsail. When we drift fish for Cobia, we are using carolina rigs with three to four once egg sinkers and 7/0 circle hooks with an eighty pound Berkley big game mono leader. The baits we are using are small Bluefish, Mullet, and Menhaden.

The Flounder fishing is really starting to pick up. We are seeing Flounder inshore as well as just off the beaches. The places we look for Flounder are in the ICW, Cape Fear River and Creeks off the ICW. Look for drop offs on the edge of the main channel with current or any where baitfish are passing by. Most of the Flounder are eating little menhaden and Mud minnows on light Carolina rigs. The Flounder are mixed in size to just under keeper size to a few over five pounds. We have caught some Flounder on Artificial baits as well. We have had the best luck with Berkley Gulp 3” pogy in pearl white and smelt colors. Rig the grubs on a red or black jig head for best results.

We have had some great Sharks fishing trips in the last two weeks; the bigger fish are just starting to show up. We are already even starting to see a few Hammerheads just off the beach. Shark fishing will be good until early October. Best baits for the near shore sharks are, fresh and live Menhaden. When we use bait to catch the sharks we use spinning reels, with 300+ yards of thirty and fifty pound Spider wire Ultracast braid. Rigging the baits; eight feet of 80 pound mono leader; some will wind on to the reel. Connected the 80 pound mono to a fifty pound swivel, then to Two to three foot of #9 SS wire and an 8/0 or 9/0 off set J hook. If you prefer Fly fishing, I like Striped bass flies in Menhaden patterns with 4/0 and 5/0 hook sizes. We use ten to twelve weight set ups; have lots of extra flies with you!

When Shark fishing gets good, it’s not long before we start to see some Tarpon in the area. We have seen some nice schools of Tarpon pushing up the beaches in the last two weeks. Tarpon fishing in North Carolina can be very fun but it can be a challenge to get one to bite! We fish for Tarpon on the bottom or free lining, using live and fresh dead baits like; spots, bluefish and Menhaden. We are rigging these baits on fish finder rigs, with three to five feet of 80 to 100 pound mono leaders. Circle hooks are the best bet for good hook ups and landings for Tarpon in hook sizes 7/0 to 9/0 depending what hook series you like. I have also had a fair share of Tarpon on my kite rig with live baits like greenies, bluefish and menhaden. Nothing like seeing a Tarpon hit kite baits!

Redfish are still biting well, but with all the hot weather its best to go early in the morning or later afternoons when the water is a bit cooler. Topwater lures and rattling corks in the shallow waters earlier mornings and afternoons will produce some Redfish. Working grubs like Berkley Gulp later in the day in deeper waters will also produce Reds for ya. Sometimes it can be just like colder mouths, slow down your presentation a little when the water gets hot. Give the Redfish a little more time to catch up with your bait.

A few other fish that are biting lately; Spanish mackerel bite has been hit or miss lately. The best catching have been earlier in the morning and casting jigs and spoons to jumping fish, has put most of the fish in the boat lately. The Sheephead bite has really picked up in the last few weeks, fishing around bridges, pilings and bulkheads will produce some nice Sheephead. Off the beach from five to fifth teen miles the King Mackerel and Mahi are showing some. Fast trolling Ballyhoo or slow trolling lives baits a working for the Mackerel and Mahi. There has also been a few Sailfish caught as well lately in the same areas.

Fishing Gear we use:

Reels Penn Conquer and Sargus spinning in sizes 2000 and 4000. Spiderwire Ultra-cast braid in 10 and 15#. Rods: Ugly stick lite 6’6” and 7’ Med & Med-Heavy and the All Star ASR spinning rod ASR844S and ASR845S.

Cobia, Shark and Tarpon: Spinning setup Penn Conquer 7000 with an Ugly Stick Tiger lite Jigging rod 6’ 6” and Penn 320LD Reel and a Tiger lite jigging rod. Line for Cobia, Shark and Tarpon: Berkley Big Game 30# mono and 50# Spiderwire Stealth High-Vis Yellow.

Thanks for reading this report, if you would like to go fishing drop me a line. Book now for this coming summer fishing season and don’t forget to take a kid fishing!

Good Luck,

Captain Jot Owens

Ranger Boats Pro Staff

PENN Reels Elite Staff

Wilmington North Carolina Guided Fishing Charters Wrightsville Beach <acronym title="North Carolina">NC</acronym> Inshore Fishing Boats

910-233-4139

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Wow, that Cobia is a beast! Great job!

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