Now that the water temperature has dipped below 80F, it’s nice to finally have a good artificial bait bite back, and it’s only getting better. Our observation is that water temps in the 70’s seem to be the optimum temperature range for redfish. They seem to have lots of stamina and a smaller fish will seem like a bigger fish as a result – they pull like a freight train for several runs. It’s really fun to catch reds in this water temperature window in the Fall and Spring.
Trout have begun to feed well and catches of double-digit numbers of schooly trout will be the norm. You won’t often catch a lot of big girls but the small males will be abundant. That being said, we should have an exceptional bite of big fish this Fall given a couple fairly mild winters we have had. Can’t wait!
Flounder make a move out of the creeks to the ocean around mid-October, and building up to that time the numbers of catches should steadily improve. We have been catching a few each trip with sizes mixed.
One of my personal favorite things to target in the Fall is the Margarita Slam (redfish, trout, flounder, striper, largemouth). We call it this because it’s a brackish water slam and is both salty and sweet water. This slam can be achieved in any of our rivers that is fed by fresh water. Maybe the most difficult would be to catch a largemouth in the Wando as it is the most salty. But there are abundant stocked striper in the upper Wando above Paradise landing.
I was lucky to get my first Margarita Slam of the season last week, and while the average size of the fish taken was on the smallish side, it was remarkable in that 4 of the 5 fish were caught on a single rig: A gold TroutEye jig with a Z-Man PaddlerZ in Bad Shad color. This is leaving out the other 4 redfish and 2 striper caught on it. Only a Z-Man can stand up to that abuse. My one remaining fish was a trout, which is the easiest fish to catch in the slam. I was determined to complete the slam on the one rig but unfortunately broke the rig off on a submerged tree. I did not have any more PaddlerZ left so I had to count on an earlier topwater trout catch to complete the slam . I don’t think there is a better testimony to the effectiveness of a rig than that… 4 (fresh and saltwater) species – that’s a combo that works.
Get off the couch and go fishing – it’s the best time of year!
As usual, if you catch a fish on one of our jigs, tag it on social media with #TroutEye and we will repost it. See you on the water.
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