The speckled trout have been hit and miss lately, some days we catch them good some days not as many. When we do get them; live shrimp has worked, as well as grubs have. Just lately I’ve had a few friends catch some bigger trout around the Masonboro jetties. When I’m looking for bigger trout, I turn too the live shrimp, not to say that big trout will not hit lures; they will! But for ease of fishing with charters; live shrimp do the trick time and time again!
When we are using grubs these are some of the patterns that are catching trout. Grub colors by Saltwater Assassin’s that have really done well are chicken on a chain and chart-diamond. Some other colors that are producing well are salt & pepper, space guppy and pearl. We rig the grubs on jig heads in colors black and red; in sizes 1/8 and ¼; with a twenty pound fluorocarbon leader. I don’t use a lot of floro, but I do for speckled trout fishing; trout have very good eye sight.
We are catching some small trout, Redfish and Striped bass in the Cape Fear River. These fish are hitting grubs, jerk shad and hard baits. The grubs and jerk shads that are working for us is. Saltwater Assassin and Berkley gulp in colors pearl, new penny and chartreuse. We use red and white jig heads in weights 1/4, 3/8 and ½ oz for the grubs. When we use jerk shads, we rig them Texas style with a 4/0 to 6/0 wide gap bass worm hook.
Redfish are schooling in the surf, we are always looking for a nice day to get out and chase them. They are pretty easy to catch; you just got to find them. That part can be a bit harder, trust me! A sunny, light wind day and good polarized sunglasses are the keys to catching these Reds. Grubs seem to be the easy go to bait for surf Reds. Saltwater Assassin “Blurps” in pearl and molting color work very well. We’ve also had good luck with Berkley gulp alive in jerk shad pattern; in colors new penny and pearl white. You need to use heavier jigs heads, ½ and 5/8 plus for casting. Color of the head is not a big deal Red, white and black all work just fine. Hold on tight, they fight great even in cold water!
There have still been good by-catches while we are trout fishing; these include some Tautogs, Sheephead, Flounder and Black & Red drum. These by-catches are hitting the grubs and live shrimp we are using for the trout. The great thing is they are all good eating! My favorites are the Tautogs and Sheephead. If your bait gets close to the bottom, you’ve got a good chance at picking up one of these guys.
Remember when the water gets cold, slow down your presentation. This will greatly help you catch more fish during the winter mouths!
Fishing Gear we use:Reels Penn Conquer and Sargus spinning in sizes 2000 and 4000. Fire line crystal braid in 10 and 20#. Rods: Ugly stick lites 6’6” and 7’ Med & Med-Heavy and the All Star ASR spinning rod ASR844S “Best Trout rod I ever have fished”
In Other Fishing News: Don’t forget starting in early January; there are some great boat and fishing expos coming to North Carolina. If you like fishing and boats you don’t want to miss these shows and fishing seminars! Here are the one’s that myself as well as other Ranger boats pro staff members will be at this winter.
January 8-10, 2010 - Raleigh Bass & Saltwater Fishing Expo NC State Fairgrounds - Raleigh, NC. http://www.ncboatshows.com/ This is a GREAT show, with over 160 booths offering everything from the latest lures, plastics, jigs, custom rods, apparel, knives, product sample booths, hard-tops, saltwater fishing guides, fresh water guides, cast nets, gaffs.....by far one of the best shows of its kind in the Carolina's and Virginia. I will be there along with other Ranger pro staff members who include; Capt. Jeff Cronk and Capt. Mike Taylor, as well as many others fresh and salt water pros! I will speak on Cobia and Tarpon fishing during Saturday’s seminars.
February 12-14, 2010 - Raleigh Convention Center Boat Show - Raleigh, NC. www.raleighconvention.com/boatshow/ This is a great show with lots of the “top of the line” boats form around the world. I’ll be there with other Ranger Pro’s to show you all the great benefits to the Ranger Saltwater line of boats.
Thanks for reading this report, if you would like to go fishing drop me a line. Don’t forget to take a kid fishing!
Captain Jot Owens