Saltwater Fishing Trends
Get specific tide information for various SC stations from NOAA
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North Grand Strand
Inshore: Captain Patrick "Smiley" Kelly (843-361-7445) reports that fishing was above average most of the summer, but there is every reason to expect it will only get better as we approach the annual fall feed. Trout, redfish and flounder will continue to gorge on mullet and shrimp on the IntraCoastal Waterway as well as out at the jetties, and as long as you are fishing in areas where bait is abundant you should find action. Black drum should also be catchable on shrimp inshore around structure, and bull red drum should move closer to shore where they can be caught off the beaches.
Cherry Grove Pier (843-249-1625) reports that typically in September the fishing heats up along the pier, with the annual mullet run usually turning on species like drum and bluefish. About halfway through the month catches of whiting, croaker and other species usually get good, and depending on water conditions it can be an excellent month for king mackerel.
South Grand Strand
Inshore: Captain J. Baisch of Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) reports that once water temperatures cool a few more degrees in September all the fish should turn on. Flounder action should pick up on mullet or mud minnows, as migratory trout arrive they should feed well on shrimp, and more slot-sized redfish should show up in the creeks. Black drum fishing should also get better in areas with current using shrimp.
Surf and pier: Captain J reports that the mullet run will be on this month, which means that a variety of species including drum, bluefish, sharks and more will be gorging in the surf. Whiting, croaker and pompano will continue to be caught, and it is often a good month for king mackerel off the piers. The Spanish mackerel fishing should stay hot and the bull drum should also start to show up.
Inshore: Captain Rob Bennett (843-367-3777) and Redfin Charters (843-277-5255) report that September should be an excellent month for inshore fishing, and with bait shrimp and finger mullet abundant pretty much everything should continue to feed. It was an excellent late August and fishing will only get better this fall. Redfish will get even more aggressive this month and more and more fish will get above 15 inches, and trout fishing will get better as the water cools. Both species will be caught in areas where there is water flowing over oyster shells on live shrimp and live finger mullet. Tarpon should still be around the beaches and sandbars through September, and if you want the most predictable action for big fish target blacktip sharks.
Inshore: Captain Ron Davis Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that the beginning of September will look a lot like August, but when temperatures drop 3-5 degrees typically the bite will turn on and everything will really start to feed up. The mullet run helps this process along. The trout bite will continue to be strong around points on live shrimp, but in September some bigger migratory fish should come through. There should be tons of small redfish caught on the flats and in the creeks, and as the month progresses they will approach or reach slot-sized. Bull reds will also arrive off the beaches. Flounder fishing should get better and better on live finger mullet, and this month will be the peak of tarpon season in the inlets with menhaden or mullet. The better sheepshead should also start to bite more around heavy structure.
Surf: Whiting, croaker and bluefish should all be feeding in the surf.
Nearshore/offshore: Bull red drum should be found in about 15-22 feet of water, and summer trout will be wide open at the mouths of inlets and the nearshore reefs and rocks once water temperatures drop into the low 70s. Spanish mackerel will continue to bust on the surface until water temperatures fall into the mid-60s. The best bottom fishing will be in 70-90 feet of water, and offshore wahoo, tuna and dolphin will all start to feed up when water temperatures hit around 75 degrees.
Inshore: Captain Tuck Scott with Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) reports that in September the tailing pattern for redfish should continue to be strong, but as the reds’ metabolism speeds up the low tide bite should also get better. Mud minnows, finger mullet, cut mullet and shrimp are all good bait choices. Trout fishing should also improve in September in moving water, and shrimp under a popping cork should be hard to beat. Flounder fishing should be decent around structure, even though big fish are pretty rare, and there should also continue to be some tripletail visible if you keep your eyes open. Through this month migratory species like tarpon will still be in the rivers where they can be caught on mullet or menhaden.
Inshore: Captain Kai Williams (843-816-7475) report that in September redfish should get easier to catch in the creeks, and when the mullet run starts later this month bull reds should get closer in and move up the rivers. They arrived early in August but then got hard to find. Trout will bite better and be larger later in the month when it starts to get cooler, with shrimp still the bait of choice. It has already been a good summer for tarpon in the rivers and off the beaches and the action should stay excellent on menhaden and mullet all month.