Last month I had discussed the bitterly cold winter we were having here in SC and my concern of the inshore fish stocks. I am happy to report our fishery is doing well. There were some stock loss but as I had estimated most of the losses were in isolated areas where fish did not have quick access to deep water to escape the cold temperatures. The cold did slow fishing considerably and mid January was a bit tough.
February however we have seen the return of SC normal weather temps with some days as warm as 70 degrees. Water temps are back up into the 50s and typical patterns for all species seem to be back in place and leveling out. Our last trip we managed a good catch of slot and upper slot redfish caught on both Eyestrikes fishings “Trouteye jig head” with the holographic eye baited with a 3” Berkeley gulp shrimp in the salt/pepper color and fresh frozen shrimp on a Carolina rig with a 10” leader, Owner #1 lightwire circle hook and a 1/4 oz slip sinker.
Stealth was the key to our success. Taking our time and fishing slow produced 10 or so fish out of 4/6 ft of water. These fish were staging on submerged oyster bars that formed points along or just past bends in the creeks. This is a good pattern to find when the bite is tough and fish on the flats seem to spooky or have lock jaw.
We did move to flats as the tide started to fall to see if we could get a bite on a bigger fish being forced out of the grass as the tide fell. It was slow but we managed one 25” fish at the end. We have made it through I think the worse part of winter and fishing will just get better as spring approaches. This Captain is looking forward to both spring turkey season and a great spring bite! Tight lines!