Fishing Report – July 23

It’s been a while since my last report and, frankly, we haven’t missed much.  It’s been a weird surf season for sure, starting off great in March and April, slowing down in May and slowing to a crawl in June and July.

Ironically, the culprits are probably both hot (south of Oregon Inlet) and cold (north of Oregon Inlet) water. Water temperatures north of Oregon Inlet have been in the high 50s-mid 60s for most of the summer, due to persistent SW winds that are hot, but also cause ocean upwelling that cools off the surf zone. Accordingly, there have been few of the prized summer quarry of Spanish and king mackerel, bluefish, pompano and the like. Rather, its been mostly scattered small bottom fish. There have been pretty good flounder in the surf, mostly taken on Gulp! baits.

Things haven’t been much better on Hatteras Island or further south either, with most of the action consisting of sharks around the Point, and more scattered bottom fish along all the beaches. There have been some Spanish and blues, but widely scattered from day to day. Black drum and puppy drum have been caught up and down the beach but not consistently.

The real bright spot of the summer has been the sound fishing for both puppy drum and speckled trout, with strong action particularly for trout, and some very nice sized fish including an 8.5 pounder from an inshore charter out of Hatteras this weekend. Trout fishing has been excellent all along the coast, with both strong numbers and nice sizes. Although typically considered a Brunswick County summer pier fishing phenomenon, pier fishing for trout has been good as far north as the Topsail Island piers. Again, good sizes.

Ironically (or not), the fishing to our north (as in New Jersey) had a similar pattern, with tons of bluefish early in the season, but a weak spring striper run. They’ve had good flounder fishing this summer as well.

The prognosis moving forward in the summer would have to be more of the same, unless the pattern of persistent SW winds change to onshore bringing better water and more predatory fish.


~ by surffisher on July 23, 2017.

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