Crystal Coast Fishing Report

Cobia-Spanish Mackerel-Bluefish-Grey & Speckled Trout-Wahoo-Dolphin!

The cobia have arrived along the shores of the Crystal Coast! Every mid-May that hard fighting, great tasting fish called cobia make their grand appearance along the beaches and in the inlets and sounds of Carteret County. Cobia in the 50-pound range have already been caught. Sight casting around inlet sea buoys and bottom fishing in 20 plus feet of water in Beaufort and Barden’s Inlet are traditional hot spots for cobia.

Another traditional fishery for the Crystal Coast is fishing the inshore artificial reefs for grey trout, and what we’re hearing, the grey trout bite is on. A popular reef to fish is AR-315 which is a couple of miles straight out from Atlantic Beach, NC. We’re hearing about grey trout in the 3, 4 and even 5-pound range.

I’ll let you in on a little secret. The inshore wrecks and reefs hold big flounder, but for some reason no one really fishes for them. Folks out of the Cape Fear region fish inshore wrecks regularly. But for some reason the crowd out of the Crystal Coast don’t. They primarily drift Beaufort Inlet.

Taylor blues are thick in the surf and piers. Their bigger brother the Hatteras Blues have been found around Bogue Inlet and all the way east to Cape Lookout.

Listen to this amazing Spanish mackerel report from Chasin’ Tail Outdoors in Atlantic Beach. “Spanish made their showing this week, first of the week we were catching a few but today we saw all you wanted. Schools were busting bait balls all over the place, along with seeing some fish up to 3lbs today. The water’s been crystal clear and you can actually see the schools of fish swimming through the bait; it’s been pretty crazy the last two days on the Mackerel.”

The offshore bite is on and has been great all winter. Captain Joe Shute from Cape lookout Fly Shop reports, “Offshore the wahoo bite is till as good as it gets, with boats coming back with up to 16 wahoo a day from 20 to 80 lbs. There was even one wahoo caught this week that weighed 108 lbs.”

Captain Thomas Wood from the charter Boat Dancin’ Outlaw on the Morehead City waterfront has been in the wahoo thick. But now the dolphin (mahi-mahi, dorado) bite has really turned on for him too. (See picture). Call Captain Wood at (252) 241-8346.

Speckled trout fishing has been productive in the marshes and creeks. Reports from the fishermen say that “Shut Mouth” creek is the spot (if you know what we mean). One thing for certain, the catch of specks this spring has been very good, due in part to the relatively mild winter we had with no hard freezes.

Really the only thing that should start to wane as we move towards the middle of May will be the sea mullet and trout bite. Everything else will continue to improve!

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