Morning surface water temperatures are around 85 degrees around Little River and with a lot of rain clarity is down. Bait is still abundant.
Even though temperatures are still blazing hot, Captain Buddy Love with Captain Smiley Fishing Charters (843-361-7445) reports that there is a noticeable change with the fishing and fall patterns are starting to kick in. Fish are clearly starting to feed more, and in 90 minutes of fun-fishing yesterday they managed more than a dozen redfish, trout and black drum in short order. Everything came on live shrimp fished under a popping cork. On a charter they managed seven trout at one spot, and even though most of those were smaller if you hunt around there are some bigger trout starting to show up.
Overall the most productive areas to fish have been shallow creek mouths, particularly where there are some oyster bars. The last of the fall and beginning of the rise – for about two hours each side of low tide – has been the most productive time to fish.
While keeper flounder are still a little scarce, if you hunt around for them you can find some. But if you really want to catch (and release) the big girls you have to head over to North Carolina, where on one recent trip they caught four over 20 inches!
Nearshore conditions have been a little rough and the water has been dirty, but they have still managed a pretty good catch rate for Spanish mackerel when it was calm enough to get after them. When the water clears up Buddy suspects they will be killing them again.
Twenty-five feet of water is still the magic depth, and you can catch them trolling spoons on #1 or #2 planer boards. There are also still some times when you can cast at them.