A N.C. Senate Subcommittee has approved a bill that would allow jetties to be constructed near inlets. For more, read this story in the Wilmington Star News.
- Capt. Rickey Beck
Address: 65 Causeway Drive, Ocean Isle Beach, NC
Page 255 of 425
It seems that I have picked the worst days to go scouting for places that are holding fish right now. The wind was blowing terribly hard today and seemed to be coming from two directions at the same time. I was trying to find every curve, corner, or tree line to block the wind. I found a few places out of the wind, but no fish to be found in these areas. The wind has silted the water up quite a bit and with last nights rain the rivers are dirty. I kept beating the banks with one of my favorite soft plastics. Finally, I stumbled on the first bite of the day. A quick little thump, hook set, head shake, and pulled the hook. Hmm? I was looking for redfish, but that felt like a trout. Next cast, another quick little thump, light sweep with the rod, head shake, and a little trout that has survived the winter came to the boat. I worked the area over pretty hard as the wind was having her way with me. I had a ton of little strikes, but as you can imagine the bite was hard to feel. They were being pretty aggressive though, as the water temperature had approached 60 degress in this area. I landed 10 of the little guys, before I decided to put that in my file and head on down the bank. I worked my way in and out of creeks, weaving through the oyster beds. I decided to change to another bait that has done me some good here later. I worked down a particular bank with the wind helping me along, making very long cast. As I approached the very back of this creek, SMACk! I mean this fish crushed it! I have gotten some aggressive strikes out of this bait lately. I have often talked about a very slow presentation, but I have sped things up just a bit. I took some folks out a few weeks back and watched one fellow catch most of the fish. I noticed he was keeping the bait moving, almost like slow rolling a spinnerbait. When he got a strike it was hard! I have started doing that and have experiecned some hard hitting strikes lately. Not a lot of bites, but some very exciting bites! I landed a barely legal size redfish just under 27" and put that in my file. I will be back out tomorrow. I hope the wind gives us a break and we can find some more fish. See ya on the water!
It was so foggy this morning I couldn't hardly see to drive across the OIB Bridge. But by the end of the day the boat ramp progress was plainly visible. I've attached some pictures so you can see for yourself.
++++Update...Captain Brant advised they hope to have the ramp open this weekend. We' update later in the week.
Wind blowing and rain approaching fast from the west! No worries, I am all for a challenge. I figure if you can catch them on a day like today, you can catch them anytime. I managed to squeeze out a few nice fish, with some little ones in the mix before the rain ran me off. I headed to the house for a snack and dry clothes. Turns out the rain passed quickly and the sun came out. The wind was the only challenge now and the fact a front just passed. Couldn't stand it...headed back and actually found a few more fish willing to bite. So get out this weekend and give it a try. Doesn't seem like the fish were brothered by the front moving through. See ya on the water!
I'm not too proud to admit that there's a whole heck of a lot I don't know about fishing. Kite fishing is one of those things! But I'm studying. For like me, YouTube is a good source. Here's a link you might find helpful. The kite fishing portion starts about 2 minutes in the video.
While I've got your attention...the OIFC sells all you need to get going on kite fishing! Also the countdown is on for the Rodeo!
The weather is here, wish you were beautiful! Somehow that didn't come out right. Anyway, you get the drift. Mother Nature is teasing us with with this spring like weather. But it is a good time to get out, check your boat and gear and be ready.
If you don't feel like that, drop by the OIFC and let Steele and Jacob make you jealous as they tell you about their trip to Hatteras with Brant and Barrett. I've been off (from work) most of the winter, so I helped hold down the fort while they took a much deserved break, and I helped cover while Anita and Amy put out new stock.
The store is a wreck, please overlook that and come see us. We can talk about what we intend to do this spring or complain about fish closures and negative effect of gill nets. Maybe even formulate a plan of action. Perhaps one of ya'll would like to take the lead?
Don't forget the spring kick off and the Year Around Fishing Rodeo. I think the trophies turned out great this year and the money wasn't bad either. Finally, a get well soon to Clay Morphis. Hurry up start fishing your new bay boat and take some more Rodeo Money!
My neighbor Tim Garret has been after me for a while to show him the ropes on the inshore grounds. It seems like I have always been too busy when he has been around. However, this time worked out, still lots to do...but sometimes things just have to wait when it comes to fishing. Fresh bottom paint and a boat full of gulp we headed for the fishing grounds. I was a bit reluctant with Tim sporting the hi-vis line on his outfits. No worries...as on the first few cast Tim was hooked up! The slight rise in water temperature has put a little step back in their fight. After a minute or two Tim landed his first redfish. A nice 25" redfish. A few cast later and he had another one. We managed to get one more small fish to the boat and had one other bite. We started fast and ended slowly, but enough to keep us coming back. See ya on the water!
Yes its true. Yesterday, Team OIFC headed out on the road on a recon mission to check on rumors of a hot Bluefin bite taking place offshore of Cape Hatteras. Capt. Brant, Capt. Barrett, Capt. Jacob and myself loaded up the Yellowfin at 3am and hit the road in search of what we have coined "The Unicorn". We arrived in Morehead City around 6am and were off on a quick 80 mile trip north to the waters off of Diamond Shoals. Along the way, we stopped at a wreck to pick up a little ammo which Brant said was going to be our "secret weapon". At that point, I should have realized that Brant and Barrett, being the infamous masters of live bait fishing were up to something. We made short work of filling the livewell with huge bluefish, and then we were off to find the fish. When we got close to our destination, the VHF was alive with the Hatteras fleet hooked up and following a huge mass of Tuna's. It took us a little while to get set up so we put a traditional spread of ballyhoo out while we got our bearings. The bite seemed to slow down as we really got going and we all had the "day late, dollar short" feeling. That was not to be the case, as it turned out, they were just having a morning siesta... Around noon, we started marking huge pods of fish and started seeing Tuna's busting on the surface, at times by the dozens. We quickly learned that all you had to do was ride till you saw them on top or marked them on the bottom sounder and pitch out live bait. While the Tuna's made quick work of the live bait, we were on the bow casting Poppers for some topwater action. Capt. Jacob was the first to draw blood with a very respectable 100+ lb fish, caught on live bait. The action continued at a fevered pitch with several fish swirling and biting at the poppers while Brant and Barrett continued hooking fish after fish on live Bluefish. Finally late in the day, we managed to hook up on topwater with an explosive strike and two other fish on live bait for a triple header to cap off what ended up being one of the most explosive, consistant Bluefin Tuna bites we have experienced in a very long time. We headed back to Morehead with "mission accomplished" stirring in all of our minds. We ended the day with 4 fish boated and another 10-12 hookups. After having a good night of rest to decompress, I have to say, the most exciting part of the day was watching two brothers, who have mastered the skill of live bait fishing for King Mackerel, adapt that same technique and apply it to tuna to turn what could have been an average day into one of the coolest fishing trips I have been on.
In response to a letter I sent the commission...I recieved a phone call from the head of law enforcement...Jim Kelly...he was responding to my comment about the usual answer we get when calling the hot line to report possible violations. "We don't have a boat in the water today". I have talked to several folks that have reported this and have given up on making that phone call. Well, Jim Kelly has given us new information to follow to get a better response. He asked me to share it with you. First, call the hot line at 1-800-682-2632, regardless the answer they give you, ask for an incident number, write this number down. If you feel that no response was made to your incident, call Jim Kelly directly at (910) 796-7220. You must have an incident number in order for Mr. Kelly to follow up. Good luck and keep your eye out for bad apples. Violations are what ruins it for both commercial and recreational guys.
The recreational speckled trout fishery has been closed until June 1st. I support the closure in hopes that this will insure a stronger fishery in the near future. I fear that all of our efforts are in vain. Commercial gill netters are still allowed to set nets and keep 10% of so called bycatch of speckled trout. I do not agree with this at all. Speckled trout are not to be targeted, but if for some reason a few get caught they can keep them anyway. Sounds like a recipe for disaster, just like the Striper fishing in Oregon Inlet. Now what are they targeting? Mullet or Redfish? Mullet are suppose to be the main target, but coming from someone on the water nearly everyday. The mullet in our water right now are small, 6 to 8 inches. Those can't be of much value even if you had a gill net that would catch them. So the best target are the redfish, but again these fish are supposely not to be targeted. However, just in case a few do find the net, commercial guys are allowed 10 fish per day. Really that is not to bad, right? However, the method in which these fish are caught often result in a high mortality rate. Gill nets catch fish by trapping them behind the gill plates, often tearing and ripping the gills. With that said I am going to share a sad story with you that happens many more times than we hear about.
Many of you have followed my fishing reports and know that a good redfish bite has been happening here in front of the OIFC. I have talked to several of you that have attempted fishing the canal and had limited success lately. I myself have had the same result. I just figured that maybe the redfish had just moved. Not the case. I was told by a good source that a gill net was set in the canal a few days ago and 200 redfish were netted. Now by law all but 10 fish must be released. However, most of these fish will probably die by the method in which they were caught. If this disgust you, then now is the time to voice your opinion. It is time to remove the gill nets from our backwaters. I have talked to many of you that express hatred toward gill nets, simply because of there destructive nature. I do sympathize with the commercial fisherman, but at what cost to our natural resources. Please express your views to the Executive Director of Marine Fisheries email@example.com,, Senate Bill.Rabon@ncleg.net, and the Governor's Office firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for your effort and support.
I sent out a mass email to all on our email list Monday morning. The update covered the Galapagos trip, job opportunities, upcoming events...... If you DID NOT get this email and you want to recieve future OIFC updates etc. via email, SUBSCRIBE TO THE OIFC EMAIL LIST BY CLICKING HERE.
Looking at upcoming fishing, may head up to Hatteras to get in on the Bluefin Tuna bite. This late Winter bite has been developing over the past few years and has become very popular with jiggers and poppers -- of course trolling yields bites as well. I'm going to assemble some OIFC staffers and maybe head that way soon. Stay tuned.
There is absolutely zero to report on the fishing front. But I do have my Sunday pictures of the progress (?) of the Ocean Isle Boat Ramp.
Also attached is a picture of the new kite fishing rod holder we now stock. Jeff and I ordered one and have stocked up on kite fishing tackle. When we were in Florida fishing the SKA Nationals we saw everyone was kite fishing, sometimes with multiple kites. I'm not proficient at it yet, but will be by fishing time. Capt. Brant and Capt. Steele are up to par on kite fishing, so you might want to check with them on tackle and tips.