South Carolina Saltwater Fishing Trends – 10/6/2008

No Gravatar

South Carolina Saltwater Fishing Trends - 10/6/2008Little RiverGrand StrandCharlestonHilton HeadTides – S.C. marine recreational fishing regulations (PDF file). Saltwater Fishing License site.

Fishing trends courtesy Check the site for recent updates and detailed reports.

Little River

  • Bluefish: Good to very good. The hottest action right now is for 12 to 18 inch bluefish, which are prolific around the jetties. These fish are concentrating on schools of mullet; dead finger mullet, cut bait, or shiny lures will all work.
  • Spanish mackerel: Good. Around the jetties good Spanish mackerel continue to be caught, although action has slowed down from earlier this summer. Throw Gotcha Plugs, Hopkins Spoons, or live mullet under a float to hook up.
  • Spottail bass: Fair. Fish live shrimp or minnows in the creeks beneath a popping cork. Red drum action is fair at the jetties for big fish – fish Clark Spoons or other heavy, fast dropping lures deep against the rocks.
  • Flounder: Slow. The water has gotten hot, and the flounder bite has really slowed down. Target the incoming tide around creek mouths, and look for areas that have lots of surface current movement which indicates highly oxygenated water. Use a standard Carolina rig with a live mullet and the lightest possible weight to hold the bottom. Look for fishing to improve in the next few weeks.
  • Cherry Grove Pier: Bluefish action has been very good for the last week and is keeping pier anglers happy; schools of mullet are in the water and fish are keying on these. A few king mackerel have been caught, for the first time in a few months, and a few black drum and flounder are still being picked up.

Grand Strand

  • Bluefish: Very good. Large schools of 12 to 18 inch bluefish are running in the surf, and can also be caught in good numbers around the jetties. Use dead finger mullet fished on the bottom.
  • Sheepshead: Good. Large numbers of sheepshead continue to be caught at the Murrells Inlet and Georgetown jetties. Fiddler crabs and live or cut shrimp on a Carolina rig fished vertically are producing.
  • Spottail Bass: Fair. Slot and on up sized drum are being caught at the jetties on most any live bait – mullet, mud minnows, or shrimp; fish the incoming tide right after the tide turns against the North Jetty walls. For largest fish use cut bait anchored on the bottom.
  • Flounder: Slow. Flounder fishing is still off because of the hot temperatures. Try Carolina rigged mullet or mud minnows in the Murrell’s Inlet area.
  • Trout: Few reports. There are isolated reports of trout caught in the Georgetown area but overall little news. Perry’s Bait and Tackle reports that four inch shrimp are prolific, which means a very good fall for trout is likely.
  • Surf report: Besides bluefish whiting are the most consistent surf bite, and some pompano are mixed in. Murky conditions in the surf have slowed the pompano bite, but if the water clears it may improve.
  • Springmaid Pier: Water temperatures are hot, around 87 degrees, and fishing is slow. A few bluefish, pompano, and whiting are being caught.
  • Second Avenue Pier: Fishing slowed down last week with the rain, but things should improve this week. A few puppy drum, flounder, sheepshead, and Spanish have been caught, as well as some whiting and pompano.
  • Myrtle Beach State Park Pier: Fishing has been very slow, but whiting, bluefish, Spanish mackerel, and very occasional pompano are being caught sporadically.
  • Apache Pier: A few very large Spanish have been caught in the last week, and mullet schools are running. Bluefish, spot, and whiting are all around, but no flounder have been caught recently.
  • Surfside Pier: Overall conditions have been slow, but a few Spanish mackerel and some bluefish are being caught. Occasional flounder are also being picked up.
  • Garden City Pier: Water temperatures are still warm at about 86 degrees, and fishing slowed with the storms last week. A few bluefish, whiting and pompano are being caught.


  • Trout: Good. Very early in the day topwater action is hot for spotted sea trout. Use topwater lures like Zara Spooks and “walk the dog” around oyster shells and feeder creeks on moving tides.
  • Sheepshead: Good. Most any structure, from nearshore wrecks to the jetties to inshore piers and bridges, is holding hungry sheepshead right now, although the biggest sheepshead do not seem to be around. Fish fiddler crabs, clam pieces, or cut shrimp.
  • Spottail Bass: Fair. Spottail bass continue to be in a summer pattern, scattered throughout the creeks and estuaries. Use live or cut bait and Gulp! shrimp or jerkshad around older docks with heavy barnacle growth on the pilings and especially those with deep holes underneath. The beginning of September will mean that big breeder drum are feeding heavily around the ends of the jetties and the grillage area. Use large circle hooks with cut mullet or live menhaden, and expect best action around low and high tides.
  • Folly Beach Pier: Fishing is slow off the pier as water temperatures remain in the mid 80s. In the tournament last Saturday a few trout, black drum, whiting, and pompano were all caught but everything was on the small side.

Hilton Head

  • Flounder: Good. Flounder fishing from dead low tide and through the incoming tide has been good. Fish mud minnows or finger mullet on a Carolina rig on the bottom.
  • Spottail Bass: Fair. Anglers are catching spottail in all of the area creeks and rivers using live mud minnows or finger mullet; incoming tide is best.
  • Surf Report: Whiting and sharks are both prolific in the surf. Fish cut shrimp on a 2 hook bottom rig for whiting.