Surf Fishing

Joined
Sep 17, 2012
Messages
3,758
Location
A Barrier Island
I like to surf fish. I spend a good chunk of the summer at my NC beach house. Salt air is good for your health/well-being. Despite trying numerous baits and spots all I consistantly catch are smallish sea mullets. I did get a nice permit once and a few pompano. Small rays are a nusiance. I don't like to fish off the municipal pier because it is mostly too crowded and the fishing is mostly for spots. They get king mackerel sometimes off the end in the deeper water.

Any surf fishermen? What do you use for bait and what do you catch?
 
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I still do some - not as much … figured my free passes from stingrays are running low … ⛑️
When I can - will fish slow sinker lures to avoid the hassle and junk fish from bait …
 
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I just got into saltwater fishing last year. Have a cabin in PA on a trout stocked stream that’s been my sanctuary for years. But I live 5 minutes from the bay/ocean so I’ve been outfitting myself over the last year for saltwater fishing. I meet a buddy and he has been helping me get the right gear and find the right locations. Biggest hurdle was getting the right rods and supplies. My buddy is a cast and wait type and when I’m with him it’s mackerel, shrimp and salted clams on a fish finding rig on the bottom with a sinker with bells on the rod tip as tells for a hit. We catch fluke and blackfish. My preference when alone is to keep moving and I’ve heard good thing about SP minnows so I bought a few and am going to give them a throw tomorrow afternoon, striped bass are supposedly beginning the spring run.

Best advice I got was to get some plastic boxes from HobbyLobby and a nice sized backpack to organize them and ditch the old school tackle box.
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I like surf fishing. I’m not very good at surf catching. The surf here in South Carolina is not that productive. The shelf is too far offshore so the waves are small and the trough is also a small. So mostly, I feed the crabs while I read a book. Still a good day though.

Mostly little whiting and small sharks. The occasional PIB sting ray. They say there are flounder out there but they don’t find my hook. Mostly a fish finder with shrimp or cut bait.
 
I tried surf fishing years ago. Never had any luck. Then on one of my getting my line wet trips, I thought to myself If I had a boat, I could go to other spots where the fish might be. So I got a boat, and my luck fishing got drastically better. And if where I was fishing on my boat and didn't catch anything, I could move to another potentially better spot. It greatly increased my catch numbers.,,
 
I just got into saltwater fishing last year. Have a cabin in PA on a trout stocked stream that’s been my sanctuary for years. But I live 5 minutes from the bay/ocean so I’ve been outfitting myself over the last year for saltwater fishing. I meet a buddy and he has been helping me get the right gear and find the right locations. Biggest hurdle was getting the right rods and supplies. My buddy is a cast and wait type and when I’m with him it’s mackerel, shrimp and salted clams on a fish finding rig on the bottom with a sinker with bells on the rod tip as tells for a hit. We catch fluke and blackfish. My preference when alone is to keep moving and I’ve heard good thing about SP minnows so I bought a few and am going to give them a throw tomorrow afternoon, striped bass are supposedly beginning the spring run.

Best advice I got was to get some plastic boxes from HobbyLobby and a nice sized backpack to organize them and ditch the old school tackle box. View attachment 209255
I used something like this bag: https://saltwateredge.com/collections/surf-bags/products/aquaskinz-medium-surf-bag

We would get a large plug case like ones you've shown, saw off one end and stuff it in a canvas bag from the local army/navy store. The more experienced you get at it, the lighter you can travel.

You do get skunked a lot surf-fishing but when you get into fish, it's very rewarding. It's been about 20 years since I've been surf fishing but Bomber plugs were one of the best. Still have quite a few of them.
 
I used to fish, mostly when I was a kid. Mostly perch, striper, and trout. Striopers put up a good fight and were pretty hard to land on the beach. For bait I used worms, sandcrabs, and sometimes lures. For small fish, shiny hooks were often attractive enough without bait.
 
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At night on Oak Island I will use ghost crabs as bait. Quite a few things will come up very shallow to catch them. My best catch, and I didn't know it at the time, was a Bonnethead shark that was about 40" in length. I thought it was a baby hammerhead.

Lots of small sand sharks on shrimp. Pack some shrimp in salt and they get tough, like rubber, and it is harder for stuff to worry it off of the hook.

Catch a few croakers that way too.
 
Go to a local tackle and bait store, tell them you will be going surf fishing and need some supplies along with some advice. 9 out of ten will help you as well as sell you the exact bait or tackle that will help.
 
Years ago I read a lot about surf fishing, looked through lots of forums. There seem to be some that are prolific at it - but they follow the tides, the moon, the natural bait. Maybe if I ever retire I can take it up more seriously. It seems a lot more pure than a boat and fish finder and all the modern technical marvels they have for other types of fishing.
 
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