If you like to fish like I like to fish, NOW is the time. Every kind of fish you can think of realizes that winter is coming and they better get fattened up for the cold weather approaching or they know it is time to make like the countless snow birds who cross the drawbridge this time of year and make a latitude adjustment.
The piers are seeing good catches of sea mullet with some large citation fish coming off of shrimp and sand fleas. There are lots of pompano of pan size and a few bruisers around on the surf and the sound. The speckled trout are starting to show up in the surf in good numbers. MR17 Mirroulures in various colors are a great way to get after them, as well as the New VuDu shrimp under a popping cork.
The soundside is like Dr. Frankenstein said, “It’s alive!”
The specks and reds are feeding heavy getting ready for the winter. The New VuDu shrimp as well as Gulp baits and gold spoons are getting the job done. Flounder fishing has been pretty stellar too. There are some large 5-8 lb flounder to be caught on the soundside right now, but they need a big bait. I suggest an eatin’ size spot or a 6-8-inch mullet on a Carolina rig. Remember, “The bigger the bait, the longer the wait” as them big boys need time to get the bait down their gullets.
The king mackerel bite is on fire right now. You can catch some single large fish close to the beach with good live bait like a bluefish or large menhaden. The school kings are as thick as they can be from 7 to 15 miles. I suggest fishing for these guys with Frozen Cigar Minnows and Blue Water Candy dead bait rigs. You will cover more ground and catch more of the school fish this way. Big ole smokers are not usually fooled with dead bait but the smaller fish usually are.
The stream is thick with wahoo and there are still a few mahi around. Most of the guys who have been killing the wahoo have been doing so with planer set ups and high speed trolling. You haven’t heard a drag smoke off a reel until you have been high speed wahoo fishing. They for sure let you know they are there. This type of fishing needs some special type of rigging and if you haven’t done it before it can be a little confusing. Feel free to drop by the shop for a tutorial.
Make sure to follow me on Twitter (@eastcoastsports) and Facebook (East Coast Sports) for up-to-date fishing information and my weekly video fishing reports. Feel free to send me pictures and questions at email@example.com. Thanks for reading and come on down to Topsail Island for some great fall fishing!
Tight lines and fair winds.
Capt. Chris Medlin is a third-generation tackle shop owner and charter captain. He makes his home on Topsail but loves fishing all over. Most of the time you can find him at East Coast Sports in Surf City or just contact him through his website at Eastcoastsports.com.