I mentioned in a previous post how March is my least favorite month to fish, and this March lived up to that. I’m glad it’s over. I had a few poor trips with just 1 or a few fish to show. Reports from some friends were similar; one or two fish at a spot, hard to pattern, etc. That being said, a few nice trout were caught, if you could find them. In fact, I had one day where I found a school of trout and it was just like a fall bite, with one fish after another, all of good size. The topwater bite is beginning to heat up and will only get better as the bait fish fill in.
Anyway, it’s April now, and that means trout are getting ready for the first spawn of the year and will be feeding consistently. We should see reports of some of the biggest trout of the year caught in April through June.
I fished yesterday afternoon and found the trout feeding well beginning at the first drop. Many were small males but a couple bigger females were hanging around different parts of the structure. Pretty much everywhere I stopped I caught a few trout. They were very aggressive and if you missed a bite they would come back a second or third time. I eventually found a school of very nice trout, 16-18″ that were stacked up. They were hitting suspending lures and bucktails well, but the hot bait of the day was a Z-Man Trout Trick on a gold TroutEye jighead. This combo caught them almost every cast. It’s fun to get in to a school of feeding trout, because you can experiment with different lures to see what works the best. In fact, this is exactly how Bob Sanders discovered the Trout Trick in the first place. It was easily the best lure yesterday.
I also ended up with my first bluefish of the year (meh) and a nice flatty at 16″.
A nice afternoon trip for sure!
In the month of April, any purchase of $50 or more on our online store will be entered into a drawing for a fishing trip with Ralph and Dave. We will make the drawing at the end of April and will post the winner’s name on our media. The trip must be claimed within 1 year. If you are out of town, you must arrange to be in Charleston on the agreed upon date to claim the trip. It is sure to be a fun and entertaining day!
Our resident Bucktail tier, Rex, posted this nice red he caught on a TroutEye Bucktail
We recently delivered a rod to a new customer and they requested Clemson trim to their specifications. Here are a few pics of the finished product. With our customization options, you can contact Les and have the colors and trim done in your own way. For example, another Clemson fan’s rod might look completely different! This one turned our really cool, I think. We will have pics of a great Georgia Bulldog rod soon. Still waiting on our first Gamecock rod order….
For those of you who have had issues with our online store in the past, we apologize. Our store did not reflect our product quality and we sure don’t want you worrying about whether or not your order went through. As a result, we have replaced our online store with a new and improved one. We hope that this restores your confidence in our store and we thank you for your support as we grow and strive to improve.
American Shad fishing in the Tailrace Canal below the Lake Moultrie dam is something that we look forward to every year. It’s a different kind of fishing. Usually when inshore fishing we aim to pattern and find the fish – but in the case of Shad fishing we already know where they are, and it’s just plain fun to catch them. On it’s worst day you may catch a skunk or one or two for several hours of effort. On it’s best day you can catch one almost every cast. Many folks, especially the old timers, keep the females for shad roe. Others keep them for cut bait. They are an oily fish and not often eaten. We simply catch and release all of them.
Yesterday, Ralph and I made our yearly pilgrimage along with Gregg, one of Ralph’s business vendors (and friend).
Fishing for them is not rocket-science. Use any artificial lure as long as it’s 1.5 inches long and chartreuse and has an auger tail! Surely other lures will work, but why mess with success?
When the run is on, you will not be alone. Weekends will have 70-80 boats in a small area, and this can make for entertainment value that is worth the price of admission, so long as you are not caught up in the drama.
A shad’s bite is very subtle and if you have a good feel (and proper equipment) you will out-fish your friends. It’s actually very good practice for speckled trout fishing. Shad also have a paper thin mouth and you will lose them if you pull too hard – another parallel to trout fishing.
Pound for pound they are a very strong fish and will often pull drag and even jump like their namesake “Tailrace Tarpon”.
For equipment, use the lightest gear you own to increase the fun and challenge. We often use crappie rods that will literally bend 180 degrees, paired with size 1000 reels and 6 to 8 lb fluoro or mono line. This makes the fight very fun!
It’s not too late to go enjoy the run before it ends for another year. Give it a try, its a lot of fun.
We are now stocking Trout Eye jig heads to Ocean’s East Bait and Tackle in Virginia Beach, VA!
Oceans East is not your average big box store. Our staff have passion and experience. Oceans East is a Hampton Roads landmark, located off of Northbound Route 13 (Northampton Blvd) in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Oceans East started as a small tackle shop no bigger than a 2 car garage in 1982. Since then it has grown to become a popular destination for fisherman, hunters and sportsman. Oceans East has over 10,000 sqft of inshore and offshore, freshwater and saltwater fishing merchandise and apparel as well as a knowledgeable staff of experts.