Fishing action across the Carolinas during the past few days has mirrored the weather, meaning it has been unseasonably good.
From the Great Smokies to offshore of the S.C. Grand Strand and at many locations in between anglers have scored fine catches.
Best reports this week come from Lake Norman, the Morehead City area, offshore of Ocean Isle and offshore of Georgetown, S.C. and the backwaters near Charleston.
Lake Norman: Very good for hybrids uplake above the Highway 150 Bridge on trolled Alabama rigs. Good around the bridge, especially at night, for crappie on minnows fished 20 feet deep. Good for largemouth and spotted bass on crankbaits and jigs cast to docks with brush underneath and to rip-rap and rocky points. Some bass are being caught while schooling on the surface, a feeding activity that should increase as the weather cools.
Lake Wylie: Good to very good for crappie on minnows fished around brushy cover 20 feet deep. Good for channel catfish 15-22 feet down in the creeks on cut gizzard shad.
Mountain Island Lake: Continuing fair to good for crappie on minnows around brush 20-25 feet down. Continuing to improve for blue catfish on cut baits.
Cane Creek Park: Generally slow.
Yadkin/Pee Dee River Lakes: Very good for crappie and white perch at Badin and Tillery. Fair at the others – High Rock, Tuckertown and Blewett Falls.
Lakes James, Rhodhiss, Hickory, Lookout: Continuing good for smallmouth bass at James, mainly on shiners. Fair for crappie at Rhodhiss and Hickory. Good for striped bass, including some in the 10-pound range, at Lake Lookout on shiners.
Fontana Lake: Continuing good for largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass on shiners and soft plastic lures cast to points.
Lake Wateree: Good for catfish in the stretch between Taylor Creek and Beaverdam Creek on cut gizzard shad and white perch while drift-fishing. Fair for crappie on minnows around brush 15-25 feet deep.
Lake Murray: Very good for white perch, generally being found in schools 20-30 feet deep and being taken on jigging spoons. Fair to good for channel catfish around humps and off points on cut herring and shrimp.
Lake Thurmond: Fair to good for crappie in the creek arms on minnows. The fish mostly are suspended 15 feet deep over brush that’s 25 feet down.
Santee Cooper Lakes: Fair to good for catfish on cut baits drift-fished over 20-30 feet of water.
Lake Keowee: Good to very good for largemouth and spotted bass around structure 20-65 feet deep on drop-shot rigs.
Lake Jocassee: Improving for trout 30-60 feet deep in the main river channels on spoons, Spotted bass are being caught near the dam.
Lake Hartwell: Good and improving for blue catfish in the creeks with heavy inflow. They are taking cut gizzard shad, herring and white perch.
Outer Banks: Nags Head area: Whiting at Jeannette’s Pier. Oregon Inlet area: Good offshore for blackfin and yellowfin tuna, dolphin and wahoo. Hatteras Island: Very good offshore for blackfin tuna, king mackerel and wahoo. Good in Pamlico Sound for puppy drum and speckled trout with limit catches reported. Puppy drum and trout in the surf at Avon. Blues, scattered keeper flounder, puppy drum, a few big red drum and whiting in the surf at Buxton. Ocracoke Island: No report. Morehead City area: Bluefin tuna measuring up to 105 inches boated just offshore. Very good for false albacore in big schools along the beaches while feeding on pods of bay anchovies. Gray trout along the beach, at the Cape Lookout jetty and in Beaufort Inlet. Whiting in the 1 1/2-pound class at the Dead Tree Hole. Reds and speckled trout in the backwaters.
Southeastern N.C. Coast: Excellent offshore for wahoo up to 70 pounds with the best catches reported from the Black Jack Hole. Dolphin and king mackerel also are being boated, along with a few sailfish and even white marlin. Black and red drum, blues, puffers and whiting in the surf. Striped bass in the Cape Fear River at Wilmington on soft plastic lures cast to docks and creek mouths and on plugs trolled just off the shoreline.
S.C. Coast: Little River area: No report. Grand Strand area: Fair for red drum at the Murrells Inlet jetties. Good to excellent offshore of Georgetown for blackfin tuna, king mackerel and wahoo. Excellent bottom fishing offshore for black seabass, B-liners, grouper and triggerfish. Reds and trout in the backwaters at Winyah Bay. Charleston area: Excellent for speckled trout on soft plastic lures worked 4-8 feet deep around shell rakes and at the mouths of creeks. Excellent for sheepshead around bridge pilings and jetties on fiddler crabs and live shrimp. Good to excellent high-speed trolling offshore for wahoo. Beaufort area: Reds in the backwaters on a variety of lures, with soft plastics working a bit the best.