Just one more fish!

More often than not, my fishing trip  – or in this case, season – ends by making just one more cast into a cold, lifeless ocean, in desperate hopes of enticing a stray fish to hit my lure.  Not this time! The last two weeks – which incidentally are likely the last two weeks of my fishing season till spring – have been sensational.  I wrapped up last night, with a solid hit from yet another upper slot puppy drum, one of well over a hundred I’ve caught in the past couple weeks.  Yesterday was reportedly a “slow” day, but I had little trouble finding and landing over a dozen fish – and pulling off at least double that – all but one, after dark.  But last night was actually pretty pedestrian by the standards set over the past two weeks, so let’s take it from that epic bite (see the last post below) from last Thursday…

On the heels of Thursday’s fabulous all-day puppy drum bite, Friday’s fish were more scattered, but still a blast.  After a solid morning bite near the pier, the name of the game was sight-casting to smaller schools of pups (maybe 10-40 fish per school) cruising the surf zone from Frisco to Hatteras Inlet.  The fish were easily visible in the waves as the tide fell and it was a pretty easy drive along the beach to scan the shore break and find your own pod of fish to work.  Very short but precise casts were the ticket to entice hits out of these fast moving schools.  After dark I waded into the calm surf with my headlamp illuminating the water and was enraptured by the schools of fish I saw – lots of pups, but also a speck, a black drum, a cob mullet and some scattered baitfish.  So cool to see what they do up close and personal.

Frisco Pier at sunset

Saturday started very slow but as the morning progressed, a growing weekend crowd started following a huge school of pups on the prowl in the surf zone.  The fish apparently started at the Pier and finally stopped about a mile south of Cape Point, almost 5 miles later!  (I think the school found some bait as the air started smelling very fishy once they stopped)  I joined the fun near Ramp 49.  Yes, it was combat fishing, but it was a blast.  Dark outlines of fish swimming along the shoreline like a 100 yard long school of finger mullet added to the excitement and the scene was much like an old fashioned bluefish blitz with everyone and their grandmother getting a piece of the action.  I still don’t understand how people can wade in 49 degree water in a pair of jeans and a sweatshirt!  After the fish finally stopped moving, part of the school stuck around one of the holes, creating some nice afternoon action for the handful of us who stopped chasing.

Weekend crowds, but lots of fish

Everyone gets in on the action!

My Avon rental has come to an end after nearly two months and I couldn’t have dreamed of more exciting conclusion, especially after such a miserable December.  Last week, in particular, was one of the finest stretches of Outer Banks weather and surf conditions I can remember, and likely the best sustained fishing I’ve experienced in over 15 years of fishing there.  So often, the season peters out, leaving me wanting more; this year, I can say I’m totally satiated going into our brief Carolina off-season.

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~ by surffisher on January 22, 2010.

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