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Fishing

  • Fall fishing season is on cruise control—for now

    By Brant McMullan
    Fishing Columnist
    For the past several weeks we have been cruising through the fall fishing season without any hitches. Fishermen have been blessed weekend after weekend with beautiful conditions, which in turn has led to some of the best fall catches we have seen in several years.
    The beachfront is still lined with schools of menhaden, providing forage for Spanish mackerel, bluefish, king mackerel and other sport fish. The missing link has been the spots. Where are they?

  • A guide to baits for fall fishing

    Fall fishing continues to be strong almost everywhere. Large red drum continue to be landed in the surf and at the jetties while are plenty of flounder, including some big ones, hitting inshore.
    The ocean-side piers continue to be streaky, having not yet experienced the solid runs of spot seen to the north of Brunswick County. That action could still occur as the spot haven’t shown up in South Carolina in any numbers yet.

  • Magical October comes only once a year

    There is something special—better yet, magical—about the outdoors on the Carolina coast during the fall. Nature is alive more than ever as the sweltering heat from the long summer gives way to cool crisp mornings and northerly winds. With nature coming to life, the same energizing affect is mirrored into the sportsman who knows October is the month to be outside. I mean how could anyone ever get bored around here this time of year? For fishermen, it’s a no brainer. Inshore, nearshore, offshore, it’s all the same.

  • Fall fishing heats up as temperatures cool

    Fishing is really heating up with the coming of fall. Fish both big and small are on the move through Brunswick County waters, spawning and feeding, and anglers are catching them inshore and on the ocean side.
    The Little River jetties continue to produce solid numbers of big over-the-slot bull redfish. This bite should continue for another few weeks and then they will be gone. The best baits are sizable pogies or finger mullet on a fishfinder (Carolina) rig. The action occurs when the tide is moving.

  • Cool air equals hot fishing this week

    Fall has been threatening to make an appearance during the last several weeks here in Brunswick County. One week of nice comfortable temperatures would be followed by another week of near summertime mid-80 degree sweating weather.
    This past week was one of those warmer weeks and that was going to be my first excuse for why the fish didn’t bite. Here we are in the month for fishing off the Carolina coast and it’s 80-plus degrees and fish still think its summer.

  • McAttack crew wins $61,000

    SOUTHPORT—McAttack took home more than $61,180 for winning the 34th Annual U.S. Open King Mackerel Tournament in Southport during the weekend.
    Capt. William McCann and crew members William McCann Jr. and Whalon Huff, of Henderson, fished the tournament based in the Southport Marina.
    William McCann caught the 47.20-pound king mackerel on the second day of the two-day tournament just off the southern North Carolina coast.

  • Fishing briefs

    Bella Faircloth catches king mackerel
    Bella Faircloth, 3, caught her first king mackerel
    Sept. 30 while fishing Yaupon Reef with dad Capt. Cane Faircloth. Mom Brea Faircloth did the honors of gaffing the king, which hit a live pogy.

  • Conditions are good for fall fishing

    Fall is now upon us and the fish have begun stirring and moving around frantically, fueled by water temperature and hormones. The next three weeks may be the best time of the year to grab your rod and go fishing from surf, pier or boat.
    Fishing guides have their hands full of customers every day now. Capt. Patrick Kelly of Captain Smiley Fishing Charters says this is his most fruitful time of the year.

  • October a great month for anglers

    Fishing is always a matter of luck and timing, but early October really puts that in sharp focus. Folks are having fun and catching fish, but the bite can come and go quickly.
    On the piers, anglers are waiting on fish both big and small. Schools of spot and snapper bluefish, as well as mullet and pogies (menhaden), are running down the coast and into the inlets, rivers and cuts causing fish like big chopper blues, Spanish mackerel and king mackerel to come within striking distance.

  • New rules on fishing licenses

    Beginning Oct. 1, coastal recreational fishermen can lose their fishing licenses for violating fishing rules.
    Recreational fishermen will fall under the same license suspension, revocation and reissuance schedule as commercial fishermen, and that schedule will change Oct. 1, as well.
    “Fishermen will face longer license suspensions for most violations,” said Louis Daniel, director of the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries. “However, non-resource-related violations will no longer count against suspension or revocation of a license.”