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CRYSTAL COAST/MOREHEAD EDITION

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Fishing Reports Catch Photos News & Events

VOLUME 22 • ISSUE 263

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SUMMER MIGHT BE WINDING DOWN, BUT THE SUZUKI SAVINGS SEASON IS JUST HEATING UP

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In addition, Suzuki is offering cash rebates of up to $800 on select models. Your dealer has the models and amounts or you can visit our website for more information.

The Suzuki Savings Season 2016 ends soon so see your participating Suzuki Marine dealer today – or visit suzukimarine.com – for details on these special offers.

Gimme Six Extended Protection promo is applicable to new Suzuki outboard motors from 25 to 300 HP in inventory which are sold and delivered to buyer between 10/01/16 and 12/31/16 in accordance with the promotion by a Participating Authorized Suzuki Marine dealer in the continental US and Alaska to a purchasing customer who resides in the continental US or Alaska. Customer should expect to receive an acknowledgement letter and full copy of contract including terms, conditions and wallet card from Suzuki Extended Protection within 90 days of purchase. If an acknowledgement letter is not received in time period stated, contact Suzuki Motor of America, Inc. – Marine Marketing via email: marinepromo@suz.com. The Gimme Six Promotion is available for pleasure use only, and is not redeemable for cash. Cash Rebates apply to qualifying purchases of select Suzuki outboards made between 10/01/16 and 12/31/16. For list of designated models, see participating Dealer or visit www.suzukimarine.com. Customer and participating Dealer must fill out the appropriate rebate form at time of sale. Customer will have the choice to either apply the cash rebate against the original dealer invoice (Suzuki will credit Dealer parts account) or have a check sent directly to the customer. There are no model substitutions, benefit substitutions, rain checks, or extensions. Suzuki reserves the right to change or cancel these promotions at any time without notice or obligation. * Financing offers available through Synchrony Retail Finance. As low as 5.99% APR financing for 60 months on new and unregistered Suzuki marine engines. Subject to credit approval. Not all buyers will qualify. Approval, and any rates and terms provided, are based on credit worthiness. $19.99/month per $1,000 financed for 60 months is based on 5.99% APR. Hypothetical figures used in calculation; your actual monthly payment may differ based on financing terms, credit tier qualification, accessories or other factors such as down payment and fees. Offer effective on new, unregistered Suzuki marine engines purchased from a participating authorized Suzuki dealer between 10/01/16 and 12/31/16.“Gimme Six”, the Suzuki “S” and model names are Suzuki trademarks or ®. Don’t drink and drive. Always wear a USCG-approved life jacket and read your owner’s manual. © 2016 Suzuki Motor of America, Inc.

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More Of A World Traveler’s Top Fishing Destinations By Patrick Sebile

L

ast month in these pages, I laid out what in my opinion are the top-5 fishing destinations in the world. It was a list of the most impressive fisheries I have experienced in a career spent traveling to fish the most renowned waters on this planet. From southern Africa’s Atlantic coast to Scandanavia, Panama, Australia and Venice, Louisiana, those five destinations topped the list among the 64 countries where I have fished. But there are other destinations well worth mention as some of the top fisheries in the world. With this article I will touch on five more destinations I believe to be some of the best on the planet. • Florida, U.S.A: Choosing a whole state and calling it a destination might be a stretch. However, the variety of great fisheries offered by this peninsula is what makes it one of the best places in the world for anglers. With fantastic inshore and offshore fishing, seasonal highlights like the east coast mullet run and some of the best bass fishing anywhere, Florida’s patchwork of options make it a great place for fishing. • South Island, New Zealand: This place is as wild as wilderness can get. Fishing for trout in New Zealand streams with the backdrop that was the set from the “Lord of the Rings” movies has to be one of the most incredible experiences of my life. Also, the north island offers great saltwater fishing for humphead snapper and yellowtail amberjack, which is one of the meanest and most powerful fish that lives in the world’s oceans. • Lake Biwa, Japan: This 259-square-mile lake is surrounded with history as one of the oldest lakes in the world. It is filled with millions of ayu—a small trout-related fish—that turned out to be the major food for a population of largemouth bass. There are consistently more

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Photo Courtesy of Al Stewart Photography

big bass in Lake Biwa than anywhere else I know of. It is where the longtime IGFA All Tackle world record was tied just a few years ago with a bass that weighed 22-pounds, 5-ounces. • Ivory Coast, Africa: Years ago, I ran a lodge on the Ivory Coast, not far from the city of San Pedro, where Stuart Campbell used to come targeting record blue marlin. He succeeded a number of times. From April to June, my average day consisted of three to five fish in the 300- to 600-pound range. • Massachusetts, U.S.A.: I’m a striped bass addict, and fishing the shores of Massachusetts is a pilgrimage I must make on an annual basis, period! There’s nothing like fishing for striped bass when they’re blitzing bait on the shorelines of the northeastern states. Patrick Sebile is the owner and lure designer of Sebile Innovative Fishing (www.sebile.com).

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM


It’s the Honda of Outboards. Literally.

Quality, reliability, technology and fuel-efficiency have made Honda an automotive legend. You’ll find those same strengths in every Honda Marine outboard. Honda outboards deliver best-of-class features in models ranging from 2.3 to 250 hp. Many even share engine technology and components used in Honda vehicles like the Accord, Odyssey, Fit and Pilot — vehicles that have proven themselves over millions of miles. No wonder all Honda outboards are backed by the only 5-year manufacturer’s warranty in the industry. Power your boat with the brand that offers millions of miles of proven performance — Honda Marine.

Take Advantage Of 2.49% APR Financing On All New Honda Outboards Or 4.49% APR Financing On All New Honda Outboard Engines Or Boat/Motor Packages — Going On Now! To Find Your Nearest Authorized Honda Marine Dealer, Visit Our Website Now From Your QR-Enabled Phone, Or Go To ca.hondamarine.com *APR financing available on all new Honda outboard engines through American Honda Finance Corporation upon approved credit. 2.49% APR financing for 24 – 48 months, available to customers who qualify for the AHFC super preferred credit tier. Example for new Honda outboard engines: 2.49% APR for 36 months financing at $28.86 a month for every $1,000 financed. 3.49% APR for 60 months financing at $18.19 a month for every $1,000 financed. 3.49% APR for 84 months financing at $13.44 a month for every $1,000 financed. Offer good on any new and unregistered Honda outboard engine, with a minimum amount financed of $1,000 and a minimum monthly payment of $100. Check with participating dealers for complete details. Dealers set actual sales prices. For well-qualified buyers, not all buyers may qualify. Higher rates apply for different terms and/or buyers with lower credit rating. Lower rates may also be available. Offer valid through 01/03/17, on new and unregistered Honda outboard engines (2hp – 250hp) and only on approved credit by Honda Financial Services through participating dealers. Honda Financial Services’ standard credit criteria apply. **APR financing available on all new Honda outboard engines or packages (boat, motor and trailer, where Honda outboard engine is the main source of power) through American Honda Finance Corporation upon approved credit. 4.49% APR financing for 12 – 180 months (term and rate based on amount financed) available to customers who qualify for the AHFC Super Preferred credit tier. Example for new Honda outboard engines or packages: 4.49% APR for 84 months financing at $13.90 a month for every $1,000 financed. 4.49% APR for 144 months financing at $9.00 a month for every $1,000 financed. 4.49% APR for 180 months financing at $7.64 a month for every $1,000 financed. Offer good on any new and unregistered Honda outboard engine or package, with a minimum amount financed of $1,000 and a minimum monthly payment of $100. Check with participating dealers for complete details. Dealers set actual sales prices. For well-qualified buyers, not all buyers may qualify. Higher rates apply for different terms and/or buyers with lower credit rating. APR may be subject to dealer mark-up. Offer valid through 01/03/17, on new and unregistered Honda outboard engines or packages and only on approved credit by Honda Financial Services through participating dealers. Honda Financial Services’ standard credit criteria apply. ©2016 American Honda Motor Co., Inc. Always wear a personal flotation device while boating and read your owner’s manual. All Honda outboards meet EPA and CARB emission levels. COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM DECEMBER 2016 NATIONAL 7


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ATLANTA/SW GEORGIA : Bob & Brenda Rice • (706) 614-8231 • bobr@theanglermagazine.com CHARLESTON/COLUMBIA : Eddie Hardgrove • (910) 264-5487 • eddie@coastalanglermagazine.com MOREHEAD : Eddie Hardgrove • (910) 264-5487 • eddie@coastalanglermagazine.com Brian Slesinski • (910) 797-6093 • brians@coastalanglermagazine.com MYRTLE BEACH : Kenneth & Ana Moore • (843) 446-5777 • kenmoore@coastalanglermagazine.com OUTER BANKS/VIRGINA BEACH : John Tiger • (757) 707-9654 • john.tiger@coastalanglermagazine.com Laura Seitz • (757) 707-9655 • laura@coastalanglermagazine.com SE & COASTAL GEORGIA : Tony Martin • (912) 269-9679 • tony@coastalanglermagazine.com Travis Harper • (912) 266-1430• travis@coastalanglermagazine.com WILMINGTON : Brian Slesinski • (910) 797-6093 • brians@coastalanglermagazine.com Eddie Hardgrove • (910) 264-5487 • eddie@coastalanglermagazine.com WESTERN NC : Debra & Joe Woody • (828) 775-9663 • woody@theanglermagazine.com

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WEST MICHIGAN : Phil Belsito • (616) 957-1714 • phil@theanglermagazine.com UPSTATE NEW YORK : Frank Geremski • (518) 898-6484 • frankie@theanglermagazine.com

INTERNATIONAL BAHAMAS : Misti & Gary Guertin • (772) 285-6850 • treasurecoast@coastalanglermagazine.com flahama@coastalanglermagazine.com COSTA RICA : Thomas Hauer, Jr. • (321) 445-1557 • thomash@coastalanglermagazine.com Thomas Hauer • tomh@coastalanglermagazine.com PUERTO RICO/VIRGIN ISLANDS : Ace Bassue • (407) 285-9453 • ace@coastalanglermagazine.com © 2016. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. Disclaimer: Coastal Angler Magazine / The Angler Magazine will not be held liable for injuries incurred while partaking in activities described herein, or for claims made against products or services provided by advertisers.

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM


Editor’s Note: Each month, Coastal Angler Magazine and The Angler Magazine staff search our vast coverage area for photos that will grace our covers. With well over a million readers in diverse coastal and inland markets, our magazines strive for broad national appeal as well as local-level intelligence to put anglers on fish. The cover is different depending on which edition you, the reader, are holding. The following is a little information about this month’s covers.

COASTAL ANGLER MAGAZINE Eleuthera, Bahamas

FREE

This year’s December holiday editions of Coastal Angler Magazine feature an image Holiday of Gene Dyer and a 30-pound mahi caught GIFT while fishing aboard Uncle Tom Dyer’s GUIDE 55-foot Hatteras off Eleuthera, Bahamas. Dyer is Coastal Angler’s newest franchisee, having recently taken over the Fort Local Lauderdale franchise location. Gene comes to Coastal Angler as a former advertising sales executive for Florida Sport Fishing. Eleuthera is one of the long skinny Out Islands that make up the eastern edge of the Bahamian archipelago. It is a spectacular vacation destination with miles of pink sand beaches, and for anglers it is a renowned bonefish destination, noted for expansive and easily accessible flats. As evidenced by Dyer’s Mahi, Eleuthera is also a fantastic jumpingoff place for the reef, spearfishing and sport fishing the Bahamas are famous for. Excellent reefs such as Devil’s Backbone are teeming with snappers, groupers and amberjack. And with depths of thousands of feet a few miles offshore, anglers can take a quick boat ride and tangle with tuna, marlin, snapper, mahi-mahi, sailfish and some huge wahoo. Fishing Reports Catch Photos News & Events

VOLUME 22 • ISSUE 263

COASTALA NGLERMA G.COM

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THE ANGLER MAGAZINE Southeastern Mountain Trout

WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA EDITION

FREE

There is no better gift for a trout angler than the opportunity to cast to gorgeous fish in the streams of southern Appalachia. The cover image for our holiday editions of The Angler Holiday Magazine comes from the north Georgia GIFT GUIDE mountains, where Tommy Nicodemus caught this big rainbow trout from Noontootla Creek Local while fishing with guide Chuck Head of Unicoi Outfitters. Noontootla Creek is one of the best small trout streams in Georgia, and it feeds the larger Toccoa River, which boasts one the Southeast’s premier tailwater trout fisheries. Noontootla itself flows from high-headwaters through public land on Blue Ridge Wildlife Management Area, where it is a small stream offering wild brown and rainbow trout. For decades it has been managed under special regulations, which have produced a great, if sometimes challenging, fishery. Our cover fish was caught from an extensively managed private trophy stretch of Noontootla Creek called Noontootla Creek Farms. The image was captured by Jason Weldon. PHOTO COURTESY OF JASON WELDON

VOLUME 22 • ISSUE 263

F R A N C H I S E

Fishing Reports Catch Photos News & Events

FISHING WITH UNICOI OUTFITTERS

THEANGLE RMAG.COM O P P O R T U N I T I E S

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inter means giant redfish on the fly. From Florida to Texas and up the east coast of the United States, giant redfish are a prime target species for many saltwater fly anglers. In my opinion, there is no finer wintertime saltwater species to sight fish a fly too. The fishing opportunities are endless, and the chance to hook a true giant heavier than 30 pounds is very likely. However, for the fly angler to be successful he/she must be able to make the cast. First Things First The first thing I suggest to anglers before they jump into saltwater fly fishing is to really learn how to cast a fly line to 40 feet quickly and accurately. We are often led to believe that if the angler can cast a long distance then he or she will be a successful fly angler. There is nothing further from the truth. I’ve seen wonderful fly casters become frustrated when sight casting to redfish. They are so focused on making a long cast that they miss the f ish-catching opportunities within 40 feet of their rod tip. Casting to redfish is more about accuracy and quickness than is distance. Learn The Double Haul Developing a solid double-haul is the foundation of a quick and accurate cast. Not only does the double-haul help with distance, if executed correctly, it reduces the number of backcasts the angler must make. It is well to remember that the more time the fly line is in the air, the less time the fly is on the water. The best way to learn the double haul is to find a grassy area like a park. Next, strip out 40 feet of fly line and make a forward cast, allowing the fly line to lie on the grass in front of you. Next, lower your rod tip to where it is touching the ground in front of you. Then, pick up the fly line and make a back cast, laying the line out behind you. This is the single haul. Next, pull the fly line off the grass behind you with your line hand while the fly rod is moving forward, and with the rod moving forward, pull the line down towards your belt line. As you feel the fly rod load while it bends on the forward cast, release the line from your line hand, allowing the fly line to shoot forward through the guides. This is the second haul of the double haul, an effective cast when long- distance casts are required, but also important for the short, quick accurate cast needed when fishing red fish. The Back Cast Is Important Much of your success in fly casting is dependent upon the development of a smooth back cast, that is the ability to cast 20 to 30 feet of line behind you whenever demanded. Remember the fly fisherman’s adage that “your forward cast is only as good as your back cast,” and a good cast is the “rule-of thumb” when casting flies to redfish. If a redfish appears behind you, simply make a forward cast. With your fly line on the water, simply pick up the line, and shoot it behind you. Retain eye contact with the redfish’s position. In next month’s column, Casting to Redfish Part Two, I will write about the importance of the repositioning cast and quick cast.

FLY FISHING

ON THE COVER

CASTING FOR THE REDFISH GAME: PART ONE

Follow Conway Bowman at www.conwybowman.com, on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

For More Fly Fishing with Bowman, go to

CAMFLYFISHING.COM

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

DECEMBER 2016

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Gift Ideas FOR ANGLERS

C

heck out these great gift ideas for the outdoor enthusiast on your holiday gift list. These local merchants are available to ensure your holiday gift giving satisfaction. We always try to encourage our readers to shop locally. It’s our community and we all benefit from supporting our local businesses. They’re here for us all year long and our personal convenience depends on their sustainability. Tell them Coastal Angler/The Angler Magazine sent you. By the way, if you see something here that you wish could be under the tree with your name on it, just take out a marker and circle it. Then leave this page open for your friends and family to see. Yes, crude but effective.

Happy Holidays from all of us at Coastal Angler/The Angler Magazine.

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Morehead city edition

Welcome to the

Photo Page!

Please submit your fishing photos to brians@coastalanglermagazine.com. Each month a winner will be selected from those submitted. The winner will receive a Fish Wide Open! t-shirt. If you have "liked" the facebook page for Fish Wide Open! and Coastal Angler Magazine of NC, you will recieve a Fish Wide Open! ball cap.

above: David Hayes from Clayton with a nice spec caught while fishing with Capt. Richard Andrews of Tar-Pam Guide Service. above: This beauty was caught by Stephen and Jimmy Fulp from Kernersville while fishing with a live mullet at the Ocean Isle Beach bridge. It weighed in at six pounds and was 24.5 inches long.

above: Garrett Cawman, 14, of Beaufort with his first speckled trout, caught while fishing with Capt. Noah Lynk. He is also a food critic for Beaufort by the Sea magazine. See how this tastes!

above: Jacob Quales of Fairmont was all smiles when he landed this sharp-nosed shark while fishing aboard the Yeah Right II with Capt. Butch Foster.

above: Nolan and Griffin Clark, with a nice catch of speckled trout caught on live bait while fishing with their dad, Damon. COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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above: An early winter slam of trout, flounder and drum, caught while fishing with Capt. Luke Tippett. decemBER 2016

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Atlantic Beach - Inshore & Nearshore Hard to believe we’re getting ready for Christmas holidays and the New Year...seems like just yesterday we were getting ready for the spring cobia run. But the fishing overall this past fall has been pretty epic, for sure one of the best we’ve seen in a few years! As we get into December, fishing really depends on the weather. We are hoping for another mild winter like last year and, weather permitting, the fishing should remain good this month. The speckled trout fishing has been just about as good as it gets since early October; I really feel like last year’s warm winter really played a role into all the quality fish we’ve been seeing. We weighed quite a few fish in over the fivepound mark and seen tons of limits of fish in the 16-20 inch range. With seeing zero speckled trout kill off in 2015, it sure has been showing a great result this fall. We’ve been seeing fish in the Haystacks, Radio Island, Shackleford Banks, Middle Marsh, Core Creek, Bogue Sound, surf zone and the Cape Lookout Jetty. In the marsh areas, anglers are finding fish in the deeper holes and banks along the above: Jeremy White, with a speckled grass edges. Also, don’t trout that weighed in at 6.82 pounds, overlook oyster bars on points caught while fishing in Bogue Sound on live bait. where creeks or ditches cut through the marsh, because speckled trout love to hang and feed in places like that. As for the jetties, most of the fish will be around the rocks. We’re all very curious if the Cape Lookout Jetty will become a hot spot again this year. In years past, the Cape Lookout Jetty has been known for one of the best spots on the East Coast. Over the last few years that’s not been the case, but we haven’t seen a trout season like this in a long time. So, I have a feeling the rocks at the Cape will be a good place to be fishing this month. Tons of different lures have been working this year, it’s been crazy...one customer will be looking for one color, the next customer another and both having good success. Z-Man Plastics, Got-Cha Grubs, DOA, Trout Tricks, Halo Shrimp, Strom Shrimp, Vudu Shrimp and MirrOlures all have been producing fish. I’ve been telling people this season to throw what has worked for them in the past and you should catch fish, because there’s not been one secret lure or bait this season. The fishing has been that above: Michael Willis, with a speckled trout that weighed good! in at 7.79 pounds, caught on a 27MR MirrOlure in the As we get marsh area around Morehead City. 2 Morehead city/crystal coast

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into this time of the year most of the live shrimp have left the backwaters, so the trout will start to feed more on live mud minnows, especaily around the rock jetties. Live mud minnows under a slip float rig at the Cape Lookout Jetty on some days can mean the difference in filling the cooler or coming home empty handed. We will keep live mud minnows in our tanks at the shop through the winter just for the speckled trout fishing. You’ll not only find specks to catch...there have also been plenty of gray trout in the area, but they will hold in different spots. The Turning Basin, Coast Guard Station, the inlet, AR315, the bridges and the end of the Cape Lookout Rock Jetty are all good places to find fish now. Jigging Stingsilvers off the bottom and Sam Gitter’s Spec Rigs tipped with bait shrimp and Fishbites will find you some action. Also, albacore fishing has provided some of the best action we’ve seen over the last few years. Most anglers have been finding the best action fishing behind the shrimp boats but most of them have now stopped shrimping for the season. Now you just need to look for the birds working the water...if you see them, that’s usually a sign of feeding fish somewhere in the area. This time of the year most of the fish will be around the Cape Lookout area but, again, if you see birds working the water that’s a sign of fish. Small epoxy jigs, Jig Fish Lures, Stingsilvers, Glass Minnow Jigs and Z-Man Jerkshads all have been working well to get bites. Sea mullet fishing has been good. December can be a great month for these tasty fish. Where these fish will be all depends on the water temperature. Anglers have been finding action inside the Turning Basin near the Coast Guard Station. As its gets colder, the fish will move into the deeper water in the Beaufort Inlet area, and also out along the beach at the Dead Tree Hole. Sam Gitter’s Spec Rigs and Bett’s Spec Rigs will be the choice of lures tipped with bait shrimp and Fishbites. Also, bottom fishing this time of the year you’ll find pufferfish; most of the puffers will be out along the beaches. Bottom rigs tipped with bait shrimp will be all you need to find some action. Black drum, red drum and sheepshead have been hanging around the Cape Lookout Rock Jetty, this time of the year it’s a pretty good place to catch a few of these fish. Fishing live mud minnows and bait shrimp along the rocks should produce some action from these fish. Also, if you catch the weather right it’s not a bad idea to check out the Shark Island area for red drum; it’s time of the year when the fish will school up in very large numbers making them pretty easy to catch. You must need a light wind day with plenty of sun to see them up around the island and shoals. If you run across a school of reds, then Berkley Gulp will get the job done...sometimes you can find schools of reds down the East Beach and Shackleford Banks. So fishing is far from over for 2016, still fish around to catch. For weekly fishing reports you can check us out at www.chasintailsoutdoors. com and find us on Facebook. Feel free to stop by the shop and we can point you in the right direction to put you on some fish. I hope everyone has a blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year, take care and stay safe. FORECAST BY: Capt. Matt Lamb Chasin’ Tails Bait & Tackle Chasin’ Tails Charters Atlantic Beach, N.C. 252-240-FISH www.chasintailsoutdoors.com

Capt. Matt Lamb

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rents, would be to use a 1/16-ounce in less than five feet of water, an 1/8-ounce in 5 to 10ft of water and 3/16-ounce or more in depths over ten feet deep. Areas of strong current will call for slightly heavier jigheads. It’s important to work your baits slowly with slight twitches and long two or three second pauses to get that hang time which drive trout crazy. Well, December is bringing to a close another great fishing sea- Mild weather days with light winds will offer up the chance to sight son along the Crystal Coast. Fortunately, for those of us who are true cast to redfish in both the shallow mud flats of the backwaters and the fishing addicts, there are several species that winter over in our area sand flats and shoals around the inlets. When attempting to locate and can be pursued with success if fishermen take the time and effort these fish in the backwaters there are a few tips to remember. First, needed to both locate and entice them to bite. With a little luck, an- dark, muddy bottoms absorb the sun’s radiation much faster than sanglers heading out to fish this December along the coast can expect a dy or light colored bottoms. This type of bottom can usually be found chance to hook-up with both speckled trout and redfish. Other spe- up creeks and farther up rivers. There’s also a better chance of fish cies that can be targetin one of these ared near shore include; eas if deeper water bluefish, albacore, sea is nearby. This probass, grey trout, and vides a place for the even a few flounder. fish to retreat to in Aboard Fish’n4life extreme cold weathwe’ll be targeting er. Another factor is speckled trout and protection from the redfish along the surf, cold winds. You will around inlets and inlet often find redfish utistructure, and up local lizing bays and creeks rivers and creeks. The that are blocked from tributaries off the Newnortherly winds. port River, White Oak A cold wind can River, and New River quickly bring down will hold fish. These fish the water temperawill be willing to bite ture in the shallows the right baits during which can shock or the right weather. It’s kill the fish. Finally, important for anglers the presence of bait to concentrate their is always important. efforts on mild weathIf you can locate an er days. Small scentarea that is holding ed baits, like Berkley’s above: Lee Roberts from Raleigh caught this eight-pound redfish near Bogue Inlet while mullet, shad, or mud three- to four-inch as- fishing with Capt. Jeff Cronk this November, while Abby Roberts shows off a 2.5-pound minnows during the sortment of Gulp baits speckled trout she caught on a Gulp Shrimp. winter months, there will no doubt be some will almost always be of the best baits onboard during the winter months. The incredible predators present. These are the types of backwater places fishermen scent absorbed into their biodegradable bodies is released over 400 should concentrate their fishing efforts during mild weather. times faster than scents in plastic baits. Another excellent soft bait is Bett’s Perfect Sinker Shrimp. Working these baits slowly through FORECAST BY: Capt. Jeff Cronk Fish’n4life Charters your favorite fishing holes creates a scent trail that quickly turns these www.nccharterfishing.com Ranger/Yamaha/PENN/Berkley Pro-Staff cold, lethargic fish on to feed. While scaling down your bait it’s also Cell 336-558-5697 • Home 910-325-8194 • jcronk@ec.rr.com important use a lighter jighead. A good rule to follow, in slow cur-

Swansboro/ emerald Isle

New NC Records Set for Snapper, Runner The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries has certified a new state record cubera snapper and the first state record rainbow runner. Randal Harmon of Morehead City caught the cubera snapper on September 28 while fishing off Atlantic Beach on the Capt. Stacy headboat. The fish weighed 58 pounds, topping the previous state record by 11 pounds, 8 ounces. The previous state record was caught in the Atlantic Ocean in 1993. The world record cubera snapper weighed 124 pounds, 12 ounces and was caught off Louisiana in 2007. The fish measured 39 inches total length (tip of the nose to the tip of the tail) and had a 34-inch girth. Harmon caught it using cut mackerel on 80-pound test line with a Seastriker 50-pound class rod and Penn 6/0 reel. Bruce Vosburgh of Kennett Square, Pennsylvania caught the rainbow runner on Sept. 12 while fishing at the Manuela wreck on the 4 Morehead city/crystal coast

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fishing charter Drumstick out of Ocracoke. This fish weighed 23 pounds, 13 ounces, and was deemed large enough to establish the first state record rainbow runner. To establish a state record fish, the angler must submit an application that is then reviewed by N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries staff and a N.C. Saltwater Fishing Tournament Advisory Board. The fish must be exceptionally large for North Carolina waters and within a reasonable range of the world record. The world record rainbow runner weighed 37 pounds, 9 ounces, and was caught off of the west coast of Mexico in 1991. The new record fish measured 46 inches fork length (tip of the nose to the fork in the tail) and had a 20.5-inch girth. Vosburgh caught the fish using a Williamson Benthos 7-ounce single hook butterfly jig on 80-pound braided test line with a Seastriker Billfisher spin rod and a Penn Spinfisher V 7500 reel.

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SWANSBORO / EMERALD ISLE COMMUNITY PAGE

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www.dudleysmarinanc.com DMF to Remove All Buoys Heading in because of a From Ocean Artificial Reefs QuickBooks problem In the coming months, the state marine fisheries agency will remove all remaining buoys from the state’s artificial reefs in the Atlanat the office? tic Ocean. The buoys, which are used to identify the location of an artificial reef, are not required for safe navigation in the ocean. They are being removed because the state no longer has equipment capable of servicing them, and contracting for this service would be cost prohibitive. The Division of Marine Fisheries began this effort in late 2014 when it removed 11 buoys from artificial reefs. An additional 25 buoys were slated for removal once GPS coordinates were verified for navigational charts. These verifications have been made, and state and federal permitting agencies have given authorization to proceed. Since 2014, some of the 25 buoys that initially remained came loose during storms and were subsequently removed. The division will begin removing the remaining 18 buoys at the end of November. The division will continue to maintain all 42 ocean artificial reefs, periodically adding material and monitoring the status. GPS coordinates, site maps and other information about the artificial reefs can be found on the Artificial Reef Program’s website<http:// portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/artificial-reefs-program> or in the recently published paper-bound Artificial Reef Guide. For more information, contact Jason Peters with the division’s Artificial Reef Program at 252-808-8063 or Jason.Peters@ncdenr.gov<mailto:Jason.Peters@ncdenr.gov>.

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connect via the internet, diagnose and help solve your problem lEasy connection setup, even for a novice lYour office participates in our remote session and you get more time on the water knowing your problem is being taken care of. lAvoid travel expenses and wasted time lAvoid lost office productivity No additional fees for the remote connection, just pay our normal, affordable support rates

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11/16/16 6:30 PM


Wrightsville Beach Really? Thanksgiving is over; here comes Christmas? Yes, it’s De-

cember and December can be a good fishing month. Pick your days and the fish will bite! I look for warmer days, sunny days and less windy days during December, if possible, for better bite rates around Wrightsville Beach. In December I catch some of the biggest speckled trout all year, but you need to know which lures work better for bigger trout. Hard baits like MirrOlures have put some big trout in the boat for me and for many other anglers over the years. MirrOlure’s 52M, 52MR and TT series are great big trout baits. Try them in these colors: 11 (redhead), 11FGO (fluorescent orangehead), 21 (blackback), 26 (redback), 51 (white/white), 704 (pink/yellow), 808 (black/ go l d / or ange ) , CFPR (chart/ pearl), HP (hotpink), the Capt. Jot custom color only available at Tex’s tackle and for great night fishing: PD (purple demon). Good looking scented lures that have been working very well for me are Berkley Gulp’s three-inch shrimp and there newer four-inch Ripple Mullet. All the colors have worked well for me, but here are a few that I like for trout (shrimp pattern): watermelon red glitter, rootbeer/gold, pearl white and new penny. For the Ripple Mullet, I like glow/chartreuse, pearl, rootbeer gold/chart, pink and goby magic/chart...are all good trout baits. All of these baits have Gulps great scent, great action and come in some great colors too! Don’t forget the good ‘ole five-inch pearl white jerkshad as well. The soft plastic grub has been around forever in the fishing world! These days they come in so many different colors; here are few that work well for me when trout fishing. Saltwater Assassin makes a load of different grubs...I prefer the Sea Shad four-inch pattern in chicken on a chain, rainbow trout, copperhead, green moon, sweet pea, pink diamond and silver phantom/chart colors. I rig all these grubs with 1/4-ounce, 1/8-ounce or 3/8-ounce jig heads in gray, red and brown colors. Don’t forget that I rig all of my speckled trout lures with fluorocarbon leaders; trout have very good eyesight and later in the season like December the water can get very clear! Get yourself a good fluorocarbon like Berkley Pro Spec or Berkley Vanish; both of these work great in 20-pound test. In December another fish I really like to hunt for on sunny, warmer and light wind days are schooling redfish. I find these schools on oyster rocks/flats, sand bars in the surf and shallow flats on the ICW. In December the reds are not hard to catch when you find them, but some times finding them can be a challenge. My go-to bait for the winter redfish are scented grubs like the Berkley Gulp Ripple Mullet or Firetail Shrimp; redfish love these things. Rig grubs with 30-pound or 40-pound mono or fluorocarbon and darker-colored jig heads like red or brown...this should get the redfish to bite for you. Not too far from Wrightsville Beach in historic downtown Wilmington runs the Cape Fear River and in the Cape Fear there are some cold weather biting striped bass. These fish are not the easiest to catch, but they fight very well, even in cold water. Working drop offs and grass lines on the edge of the river is where you can find the stripers, using swimbait lures and Berkley Power Bait, Berkley Havoc Grass Pig lures and Berkley Gulp Jerkshad should put a few 6 Morehead city/crystal coast

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Cape Fear stripers on your line. Rig these lures on swimbait hooks for weedless fishing, as there are lots of hangs in the river. Don’t forget that the Cape Fear River striped bass fishery is closed; catch and release only! Tackle run down: PENN Battle II & Clash Spinning reels in sizes 2000, 2500 and 3000 for the redfish, speckled trout and striped bass; PENN Battalion 6’6” & 7’ med/light and medium action rods; line is Spiderwire Ultra-cast in 8-, 10- and 15-pound for reds and stripers, or in 8-, 10- and 12-pound test for speckled trout fishing. Thanks for reading. Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and good winter fishing to you! Forecast by: Capt. Jot Owens Penn Tackle Elite Staff •Ranger Boats Pro Staff www.captainjot.com • 910-233-4139

lower Neuse river With the cold fronts pushing down and water temperature dropping, we will see the trout pushing into the inland creeks for their winter patterns. They will hang in the deep pockets mainly moving up onto muddy flats as the sun warms that skinny water during the day. This is when you can get some great topwater trout action going on. Throw a Rapala Skitter V or Storm Arashi Top Walker across the flats and hang on. During colder days when fish are in the deeper pockets and sloughs I prefer to use DOA CAL baits twitched of the bottom. The DOA curly tails are great this time of year. You can get a limit of fish fast as they are schooled up, so please release others with care. As water cools also slow your baits down - If you think you are working it slow, slow it down more! And the bite can be really subtle, so a good action rod and braid is key. The rock should also be on fire. Look along structure shoreline, docks and areas with a lot of bird activity throwing your favorite topwater lures. Action should be good early mornings and late in the day before dark. Always keep one ready during the day as you may see them push bait to the surface and give you great opportunity. above: Wesley Sheldon Dale of Goldsboro with a During the day I nice Neuse River striper caught on Storm Arashi Top Walker while fishing with Capt. Dave Stewarts. like to jig around bridges and reefs watching my depth machine for activity on bottom. My best choices for topwater are Rapala Skitter V and Storm Arashi Top Walker. For jigging I like DOA CALs on the lightest jig head fish-able paired with their Jerk Shad or Ah Swimbait. There will still be drum and flounder possibilities fishing the same baits and tactics as with rock and trout. Gotta be the best time of year!

Forecast by: Capt. Dave Stewart KneeDeep Custom Charters • Minnesott Beach Bait & Tackle 36 Country Club Drive, Minnesott Beach, NC 28510 252-249-1786 • specfeverhotmail.com • www.pamlicotackle.com

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ibx/pamlico/pungo The big story for anglers on the Inner Banks so far this fall has

been the amazing speckled trout (spotted sea trout) fishing. Anglers all over the Inner Banks have been raving about excellent fishing... some saying we’re seeing the best fishing in several years. Speckled trout range from Massachusetts to Mexico; however, those fish wintering in the northern range are susceptible to winter mortality from freezing water temps. With last year’s mild winter following two very cold winters in a row with several significant freezes the years before, the speckled trout population has rebounded dramatically. According the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries Spotted Seatrout Fishery Management Plan, a one-year-old speckled trout may reach an average length of 10.7” (ranging from 9.7”-12.8”), a two-year-old 18.2” (ranging from 15.6”-19.1”), a three-year-old 22.3 inches (ranging from 19.5”-23.2”) with about one inch per year from year four onward. What this all means is that we have been seeing some nice, keeper-size specs and plenty of them. Back in November, as is often the case with a good fall “mullet blow”, the water temps cooled dramatically in a very short period of time and the fish changed their habits seemingly overnight. Water temps fell from the mid-60’s to the mid- to low-50’s. The specs moved into a late fall and winter pattern in just a few days. Before the storm, they could be found mostly out in the main river channels and on the outer points and bays of the Pamlico Sound. After the fall in water temps, they pushed up into the middle to back ends of the deeper creeks, where they traditionally winter. In these areas, they can often find a more plentiful food supply and slightly warmer water temps. In December, the fish will be in a typical winter pattern where a slower presentation is a must. Popular winter baits include the Z-Man MinnowZ on a 1/4- or 1/8-ounce jig head, achieving the lowest sink rate and slowest presentation possible. You must be patient and let you bait sink to the strike zone...often in water deeper than seven or eight feet. A superlight jig head can also be effective in shallower water when the trout move out of the deeper channels onto shallow flats to feed a little more aggressively during warm days and around the full and new moons. Other effective winter baits are suspending twitch hard baits such as the MirrOlure MR-17/27 series or the Rapala X-Raps. In clearer water, which is prevalent in the winter, the Bomber Badonkadonk in natural colors such as the menhaden, mullet, pinfish, or croaker might outfish the MirrOlures. Just experiment and you might start noticing a pattern. Winter trout fishing can be a frustrating endeavor because the fish don’t always feed. It’s just as important

above: To say speckled trout fishing has been good would be an understatement, as shown by these catches by anglers fishing with Capt. Richard Andrews.

to time your fishing day with the right conditions as the lure or bait you throw and the type of presentation you use. Although winter trout fishing can be world class at times, the most exciting and consistent winter fishery we have in North Carolina has to be our striper fishing, both in the upper Pamlico/Neuse systems and in the Lower Roanoke system. I fish the lower Roanoke due to the sheer numbers of fish in the Albemarle stock. December is time to start thinking about winter striper fishing on the lower Roanoke River. The winter fishery near Plymouth, NC is second to none and any day can potentially produce a triple digit catch on jigs or on flies. This is THE BEST light tackle winter fishery in North Carolina. The stripers on the lower Roanoke and western Albemarle Sound during January, February, and March are the same fish that travel to Weldon to spawn in April and May. Why wait until they get up there around all the crowds. You can have them all to yourself much earlier in the year. Come enjoy the incredible beauty of the lower Roanoke River area, where you will surrounded by ancient cypress trees, national wildlife refuge on all sides, and lots of action on 16- to 25-inch stripers. Call me to arrange your winter fishing excursion. Prime weekend dates will go fast. These trips make a great holiday gift for the angler(s) in your family! FORECAST BY: Capt. Richard Andrews Tar-Pam Guide Service (252) 945-9715 www.tarpamguide.com

Big Rock Elects Henry and Ivey to Board The Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament announced its elections for two new board members beginning, November 1, 2016. The board elected Caroline Henry, and Emery Ivey, both of Morehead City. Caroline grew up in Carteret County with a love of sport fishing. In 2014, she was awarded Top Female Angler in the North Carolina Governors Cup. She is now CPA at RSM in Morehead City. Emery is a real estate developer and is the owner and captain of the sportfisher Mollie Whopper. “We are extremely pleased to welcome these two new members”, commented Billy Kornegay, Big Rock President. “Their enthusiasm is infectious and their industry knowledge adds depth to our board”, he continued. The 18-member volunteer board serves four-year terms and can be re-elected at the end of each term. The full list of board members is available on the Big Rock website: http://www.thebigrock.com/big-rockboard-directors.

Caroline Henry

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Emery Ivey Morehead city/crystal coast 7

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Harkers Island December is here and it’s been the best fall fishing in years. October and part of November was really warm and thus the water temps bumped between the mid 60’s and mid 70’s depending on the weather. Leading into Thanksgiving. so far this has been the best fall fishing in years with above average size on speckled trout, redfish and flounder! Hurricane Mathew actually had a great impact on our local fishery by pushing lots of fish from the the Neuse River, Bay River and Pamlico River into our area. As December gets closer, the water temperatures usually begin to drop to the mid50’s on the inside waters around Harkers Island and Beaufort. In the outside waters around Cape Lookout and along Shackleford Island there have been some really nice flounder and false above: Sara Davis, who is a native of albacore have been on fire Beaufort, shows off a beautiful redfish she on the nicer days. recently caught off Shackleford Island while For those fishing inside fishing with Capt. Noah Lynk. there have been lots of speckled trout in the local marshes and around the bridges. The best baits for catching specs have been small soft baits such as the Salty Bay Glass Shrimp, the MirrOlure Lil Jon soft bait, Marsh Minnow and the Provoker, as well as the Halo shrimp and the new Sea Striker Shrimp used when the current slows down. Want to use the hard baits? Sea Striker has introduced their new Cedrus sinking hard bait and man, does it catch fish! It comes in a variety of colors and was introduced in shops this fall so keep an eye out. The MirrOdine line from MirrOlure has been doing very well for above: Another happy angler with a nice pair me...the Heavy Dine of red fish caught near Shacklefprd Island while (sinking version) in fishing with Capt. Noah Lynk of Noah’s Ark 808 color has been Charters. 8 Morehead city/crystal coast

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my go-to hard bait.I haven’t been using the Soft Dines as much due to lots of small bluefish still around... but I can report that the Soft Dine now has an XXL version for those lunker speckled trout. For the specs up in shallow water (six feet and less) in the ocean, we’ve used the old 808 52MR as well as the Red/White TT. For the large schools of reds I’ve been throwing the Salty Bay Red Devil in Roast Beef color and Gold, and also throwing the Cajun Thunder gold and copper spoons and the Cajun Sleigh. above: Parker Parrot, Asst. Mgr. At Cape Pointe For the grays I’ve been Marina on Harkers Island with a six-pound fishing in about 15-20 flounder, caught while fishing with Capt. Noah feet of water near the Lynk. This is his first ever flounder caught using a Cape Lookout Rock Mirr-O-lure Marsh Minnow soft bait. Jetty and using the MirrOlure Marsh Minnow or the Salty Bay Shrimp in the Methiolate Silver or Opening Night, rigged on a 3/8-ounce lead head to get down to the bottom quickly to avoid being cut off by bluefish. For fishermen looking to catch the proverbial gator trout this is your year to do it as there have been some really nice fish over five pounds brought to the scales on a daily basis, I had five citation trout on my trips in early November. This means having very good local knowledge of the tides, exact places to anchor, what tackle to use which goes into knowing what the fish are feeding on. Catching some of the bigger ones has really been tricky but I’ve found that if you worked the incoming and change of tide just right around areas of grass flats where an eddy forms up or knowing what structure they’re are staging up on seems to be the trick. There have been tons of fish to catch with the really nice ones found up in the marshes of the Hay Stacks/ Newport River, Middle Marsh and Sheeps Head Marsh, as well as along the surf zone on Shackleford Island. The rest of the winter looks good, so let’s all hope we have good fishing weather as this is a banner year! Looking for reds on the inside ? I’ve been working the areas of North River marsh as well as the Haystacks, Calico Creek and Harlowe Creek up near Mill Creek. These are a little off the beaten path but they all have several things in common that reds love: shallow water, lots of oyster beds and plenty of food. Fishing for these shallow water studs requires either topwater baits by MirrOlure, Rapala, Zara Spooks, the Cajun Sleigh and gold spoons by Cajun Thunder; or you can go to live bait with a Cajun Thunder Popping Cork with a really short leader so as not to get hung up in the oysters. The best live bait this time of year will be mud minnows and live shrimp. The winter fishing is far from over and the trout and reds may feed most of the winter, depending on the weather and water temperatures. So hope and pray for a mild winter! Here’s hoping that everyone has a very Merry Christmas as well as a safe one, Take all precautions when fishing the cold waters of winter. I hope to see everyone on the water and at the upcoming fishing shows. FORECAST BY: Capt. Noah Lynk Noah’s Ark Charters 252-342-6911 or at Cape Pointe Marina on Harkers Island, 252-728-6181 www.noahsarkfishingcharters.com

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11/16/16 6:30 PM


offshore/Pelagics Wow, what a year! We have had another great season of fishing, but it was again a bit different than what we were used to. The summer air and water temps soared to ridiculous highs for a lengthy period, some fish never really arrived as expected and others showed up early. More recently we have had a historic election that started with a bang and continually grew into a nightmare of political ads and lead to division of our country. I for one am looking forward to 2017, lots of changes and plenty of good fishing is ahead. October and November have come and gone and there was some very good fishing to be found, however there were very few good weather days to get out there to take advantage of it. December is upon us, the weather is cooler and even more unpredictable but the fish will still be around. Wahoo and blackfin tuna will be the primary targets. They will be found in the warmer water edges that show up along the productive bait holding areas, if and when those bodies of water move in a bit to put it within reasonable range. Winter is just like the rest of the year, there is no big secret, find the bait and you will have the best possible chance to find the fish. As always it will be hard to beat a blue/white sea witch rigged with a good sharp hook on wire. As for other opportunities you will have a couple of options. You can always do a little bottom fishing, there is always something down there to pull on the line. Our fisheries management folks managed to put the screws to us a bit on the Bluefin tuna, we are not allowed to fish for them commercially until January – however that will make it a little easier for anyone who wants to fight a monster for the fun of it. The fish will still show up and there should not be many boats out there chasing them, if you have the proper tackle (at least 80# class tackle) then go give it a try. I will finish up by again asking you to please make sure you are careful and thorough in your preparation before you head out over the winter months. The air is cold, the water gets very cold and you will not survive long if you have to take a swim. There are not many boats out there over the winter so help is much farther away, especially in light of the very long offshore runs you will typically have to make in December or January. You need to make sure you have the boat in good shape and that you have the proper emergency equipment – raft, epirb, survival suits, handheld radio, warm/dry clothes, etc… Running with a buddy boat is the best plan, but of course that is always the case in my opinion! Thank you for reading my ramblings again this year! I hope 2016 has been good to you and that 2017 will be even better. There are big changes ahead for me personally and for our country as a whole, guess it adds a little extra meaning to be usual monthly ending Plan ahead, be prepared and have fun!

offshore/bottom

above: Capt. Tim Barefoot with a gag grouper caught on a live grass grunt/crab decoy jig in 69 feet of water.

The Colder, The Better!

The years that go by always remind me of my favorite month of the year for bottom fish…December. When the offshore water temps get down into the 60’s and 50’s, the gags truly put the feedbag on. Cigar minnows and sardines will ball up on all the usual ledges and wrecks that draw the gags and all the other bottom fish…so needless to say, a live cig or sardine on the bottom is not a matter of “will it happen”, but, how long will it take. It may not be a gag, but something will eat a live cig or sardine, no doubt about it. I say that with the exception to the situation of a big shark on the bottom around the baits, at that point, no one eats until the shark eats. I would also suggest to keep a live grass grunt on the bottom for the big bite. The sea bass pinkies and grunts will hammer the cigs and sardines, but it takes a LARGE sea bass or a gag to eat a grass grunt, as big as your hand. The downside to the big shark in the baits is….they LOVE a grass grunt on the crab decoy as good as the gags, or better. The predators of the ledge like the gags and large sharks are programed from birth to eat the struggling finfish (like a grass grunt pinned to something that looks like a crab). The gags can be in a wide range of water depths, so DO NOT overrun the fish, as they can be in the shallow water, as well as the 80- to 90 foot+ depths. I have seen good bites in close, and the same day, biting good in the deeper water. It’s just a matter of finding the bait and structure and getting the “bite” going. You can ONLY do this by anchoring! You can catch a fish here and there while drifting, but the folks that anchor are the folks that do the numbers of grouper. Not that it really matters anymore, as you can only keep one gag per person per day! On that same note, only the folks that are fishing for grouper are the folks that come home with the grouper in the box. If you go out there fishing with cut squid or half minnows, you are FORECAST BY: Capt. Troy Pate, James Joyce II fishing for grunts, pinkies and sea bass. If you go down with grouper baits 252-917-0445 • www.moreheadcitycharter.com that eliminate all the trash bites, you will more than likely catch grouper. With the sheer number of kings that were on the beach this fall, the light line will surely be going off constantly, sometimes too much. If you are truly intent on bottom fishing, the light line around a school of kings can be a nuisance. every time a king gets near the boat, all the bottom tackles have to come up and get out of the way. Frozen cigar minnows have caught more kings than anything, except drone spoons, but a live cig on the light line is the ultimate choice. I would also suggest keeping a frozen cigar minnow on a sliding float set 25-35 feet deep. Sometimes this is the bait that gets bit. During the middle of the day when the sun is brightest, the sliding float puts it down at the level they are. Be prepred for the wahoo bite on the light line if you are in the 100 foot+ water near big schools of bait! Whatever water depth you choose to fish, be sure to take the younger anglers for memories they (or you) will never forget.

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FORECAST BY: Capt. Tim Barefoot, Barefoot Fishing www.circlehookjig.com • www.barefootfishing.net

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Flying Around with Captain Lee

Wow, time flies, what happened to 2016? Now 2017 is almost upon us, best bet. On warm days they will be more active. In the middle of the day, wow! The speckled trout bite has been on since the hurricane and it looks topwater and gold can be very effective for them. This is also the time they move back into the ocean. With the clear water you should be able to find like it may stay that way for a while. With the temperatures falling, speckled trout fishing and the flounder them in the surf. The same baits as listed above will work well but I prefer fishing in November has been great with multiple slams (flounder, trout to use MirrOlures like the Catch 2000 or the MR 17. Red (#26) and the PIN colors are very effective for them. and drum) on many of the trips last month. Trout will be moving into the deeper holes at the end of the month but You will find the stripers in the Cape Fear River. Trolling with deep you still will find them in the shallows with current. I look for areas with diving baits is a great way to find them. Fishing in the shallower water and seams and back eddies and work MirrOlures on the swing there. Most in small creeks I like small swimbaits, big grubs, Rattle Traps and MR17 MirrOlures. On the high tides, I fish next to the steep strikes will come at the end of the swing. When fishing with grubs, I fish the lightest lead head banks...as the water falls, I move to the mouths of the creeks. I can fish, popping them off the bottom with a sharp snap...your bite will With the waters getting cold, be sure to fish with a partner; that way, if come on the fall and only be a small “tick”. As a rule, you may catch more something were to happen, your odds will be better of surviving an unexpected dive out of the boat. Be on grubs but the nicer ones safe on the water! come on MirrOlures. Don’t overlook the jetties and the wall around Masonboro Inlet...there About the author: is some great fishing there and Captain Lee Parsons nighttime can produce some 910-540-2464 big fish. Also, the flats at Topsail www.gottaflyguideservice.com Island will hold them on the Located In Wrightsville Beach at the Bridge Tender higher tides. Marina Flounder will move to the ocean for the most part but some will still be found on the inside. Falling tides in the creek mouths is where I like to look for them. Mud minnows on the bottom or Gulp rigged on a worm hook work well and will produce a nice dinner here and there. Red drum will still be on the inside flats...you should fish slower for them. Bait, cut mullet, live mud minnows and above: Chad Defrene came from Louisiana to catch a nice red drum while fishing dead sticking Gulp are your with Capt. Lee Parsons.

Big Rock Blue Marlin Tourney Gift to UMO The Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament has donated a gift of $100,000 to the University of Mount Olive. The gift will be directed to the University’s Track and Field/Lacrosse Complex currently under construction. The gift will include naming rights to the adjacent lacrosse field house. Once completed, the Track and Field/Lacrosse Complex will include an eight-lane, synthetic surface, 400 meter track built with an artificial surface field inside the track, along with areas for throws and jumps. The total cost is estimated at $2 million. Construction is expected to be completed this fall in time for spring competitions. “We are very appreciative of this donation from the Big Rock Tournament,” said Vice President for Athletics Jeff Eisen. “It is wonderful that their tournament is able to raise money for charitable purposes and that they saw fit to make a very significant donation toward our Track and Field/Lacrosse Complex. The Big Rock tournament leadership recognizes all the great things going on at UMO and the impact that this particular project will have on the University as well as the community.” “We appreciate the Big Rock Tournament Board of Directors and its staff for making this gift possible,” said Jimmy Williams, from the UMO Institutional Advancement team. “A special ‘thank you’ is extended to Billy Kornegay, a UMO graduate and President of the Big Rock Board of 10 Morehead city/crystal coast

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Directors, and to Tom Bennett, Big Rock Board Charity Chairman, for making this gift possible.” The Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament celebrated its 58th annual event this year with a field of 174 boats in Big Rock and 125 boats in the Keli Wagner Lady Angler tournament. Proceeds from each tournament year are donated to charities and worthy organizations in the community and state. The entire process is driven by the fit between Big Rock’s five-point mission statement and the destination of the year’s charitable funds. Board members and staff have a firm pledge to make the event as successful as possible so that they may give to worthy organizations. “The Big Rock Blue Tournament looks for winners, not only in our annual competition, but in our philanthropic work as well,” said Bennett. “With its dynamic leadership, extraordinary growth and impact on the lives of young people on its campus and throughout our region, the University of Mount Olive certainly qualifies as a winner in our book. The Big Rock tournament is pleased to support the construction of the new Track and Field/Lacrosse Complex at UMO and further, to recognize this outstanding institution for its contributions in changing the lives of young people and for the role it plays in Eastern North Carolina.

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11/16/16 6:30 PM


kayak Fishing Her First Red I love kayak fishing this time of year. The weather is great...warm in the afternoon sunshine. A great time to be sitting in your kayak and fishing, and this time of year my seven year old daughter loves to go out with me. She does ok in the heat of the summer kayak fishing with me but in the late fall we get more time in the saddle. The last trip we took was very special to me. She caught her first red fish, which is something I have struggled all year to have happen for her. Every time we went out I would get a few and she refused to take the rod from me because in her eyes she did not really catch it that way. Well, she caught her first one all on her own this time. I was just the guy with the net handy to land the fish. Her first red was not a record breaking fish at 18.5 inches long...but at age seven with the rod bent in half and the drag screaming it was pretty big to her! She caught it on a bottom rig with a live mud minnow. She cast it right next to an oyster bar and just as she got the line tight it hit and the game was on. We were fishing a falling tide on a spot I have worked for a few weekends and have had some luck there with both reds and trout. So it was a no-brainer that I take her there to see what she could do. My normal fishing in that area is to put something on the bottom and work a popping cork with a live shrimp under it for the trout. The way I fish a cork is to get up-current and cast out, leaving the bail open and keep my eye on the cork as it drifts, popping it every so often. As the tide falls I change the length of my leader under the cork so the shrimp does not get caught up on the oyster bars. A few times

I have run out of live shrimp and moved over to a DOA shrimp under the cork fishing it the way it is supposed to be and still had some luck, just not as good as with the live ones. I have been dreaming of this moment all summer. She has been practicing casting in the backyard and everytime we went out this summer. Like they say, practice makes perfect and it paid off for my daughter. At the end of the day I think I was more excited than she was. I don’t think she quite realized just how much I wanted her to catch one. On a warm late fall afternoon soaking up the sun in my Native Ultimate FX15T we made it happen...and I can’t wait to make it happen again on the next warm afternoon!

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article BY: Chris Tryon Hook Line and Paddle Canoe and Kayak Outfitters, Wilmington, NC Phone 910-330-6999 email: hooklineandpaddle@yahoo.com

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New African Surf Rod Design Promises ‘Seven Seas’ Success By Mike Pehanich

T

he landscape is stark off Namibia’s South Atlantic Coast. Sands end in sea, and, well, that’s about all there is to see! But these coastal waters where Jeri Drake and wife Sue fish and train for international surf fishing competition are loaded with game species, including copper sharks (“bronzies”), spotted gully, cow sharks, blue rays, smooth hounds and many more. You might never make it to Africa to fish these waters, but the tackle and techniques that Jeri—a master rod builder, innovator, member of Namibian President’s fishing team, and owner of Excalibur Tackle (www. excalibur-tackle.com ) in the town of Henties Bay—takes to the surf could find application on your coastal waters, too. Fishing is serious sport along the “Skeleton Coast,” particularly for tournament anglers who, armed with long rods and a fighting belt, often wade out several hundred yards to sandbanks, routinely casting 6- to 7-once sinkers and bait 100 to 160 yards or more to reach hard-fighting game fish. Rod design for Jeri Drake, known simply as “Jeri” in southern African fishing circles, has evolved into 14-foot and longer rods. He has developed his own blanks for this style of fishing, with unique handles featuring short butt sections and long fore grips, the latter measuring around 28 inches. The essential difference to U.S. style blanks is a ‘faster’ action, as opposed to the usual ‘through’ action. Jeri employs the same “reel down” design—reel positioned relatively close to the fighting belt—with surf rods he builds for both “fixed spool” (spinning) reels and conventional reels. The long fore grips allow fishermen to change the fulcrum point while fighting the fish. The “reel down” design also makes it easier to master more powerful casting techniques and thus achieve better distances. Wading through troughs and casting and fighting fish in sea spray calls

for a non-slip rod grip material. Jeri crafts his rod handles individually, wrapping Winn Superior Rod Wrap (www.winngrips.com ) directly over the large butt section of the rod blank. The all-weather WinnDry polymer, which also wraps easily over existing cork or EVA grips with its tape-like backing, retains its tacky feel even when he’s immersed in sea spray. In lieu of finishing tape, Jeri terminates the ends of the rod wrap with thread wrap and a finishing coat. This prevents seawater, sand particles and any other substance to undermine the grip material by seeping in between the wrap and blank. It also gives the handle a more finished look. To protect the polymer material from wear and punishment where rod butt meets rod belt, Jeri places a woven carbon sleeve above the butt button. The base of the rod wrap starts above the sleeve. This keeps the polymer from contacting the rod portal of the belt. Adapt some of Jeri’s surf rod tips to the rods in your arsenal. You’ll be tipping your cap to the tackle innovations of the avid anglers of southern Africa!

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PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT NO SHOES NATION GEAR Engel has partnered with Kenny Chesney’s No Shoes Nation to offer you a better way to keep #SeriouslyCool. A complete range of products will keep that “cool factor” alive for hours, days, even weeks. With 2 inches of insulation, a rugged lid that seals tightly, virtually indestructible construction, and the No Shoes Nation logo proudly emblazoned on the front, Engel High-Performance Coolers are exactly what you need when the show goes on the road. Packing your stuff in? Grab an Engel No Shoes Nation Backpack Cooler. It’s tough, easy to carry, and can hold enough food and drinks to keep the party going into the night. New NSN Backpack Coolers are coming soon, so stay tuned. When you’re ready to watch the show, sit back with your Engel No Shoes Nation Tumbler. These vacuum-insulated, stainless steel 30-ounce tumblers have a no-drip lid, and a no-skid bottom, so you can enjoy a drink without worrying about spills. Best of all, proceeds from all these sales go to supporting the CCA’s National Habitat Program so there will be a waterfront for us all to enjoy long into the future. For more information, visit

WWW.ENGELCOOLERS.COM

PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT WINN SUPERIOR ROD WRAP

The Lure That Swims •4 NEW Colors! •Unique patented design •Works with soft baits! • 2 hooks Included •Made in USA

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No more cork tape! No more bike wrap! Now you can apply the patented WinnDry polymer of the all-weather rod grips from Winn to your own rod handles in minutes with just a pair of scissors and a marking pen for instant comfort and rod control. Available in 96- and 44-inch rolls, Winn Superior Rod Wrap brings bold color, style, elegance and fashion to any rod arsenal with seven solid colors: lime green, dark gray, red, yellow, pink, black and purple—and seven hot and trending camo color patterns: Wildfire, Desert Camo, Blue Camo, Lime Green Camo, Gray Camo, White Blue Camo and Pink Camo. The Saltwater Series (96-inch only) features three solid embossed “Tuna” wraps and an elegant camo-style “Dorado.” This versatile rod wrap, which comes complete with finishing tape, can perform double duty on landing nets, boat handles, gaffs and other surfaces upon which the non-slip properties of Winn polymers offer tactile advantage. Now anyone can put a Winn “skin” over the grips of their favorite rods. Finishing tape included.

WWW.WINNGRIPS.COM

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UNDER THE SEA

SPEARFISHING WORLD RECORDS SHERI DAYE

M

ost people have heard of IGFA (International Game Fish Association), which manages world records for fishermen. But have you heard of IUSA (International Underwater Spearfishing Association)? IUSA keeps track of spearfishing world records. Both were founded more than 65 years ago and have a rich history—and both pride themselves for providing a universal code of sporting ethics as well as record keeping. The IUSA rules are fairly simple: the fish must be taken while freediving and using a muscle-powered speargun, sling or polespear. The catch must be legal, unassisted and weighed on a certified scale. The application must include photos of the weighing, dimensions and witness information. The categories are: men and women, saltwater and freshwater, speargun and sling/polespear. In other words, a woman can have a record black grouper taken by polespear in the ocean; a man can have a record walleye taken by a speargun in a lake, and so forth. I was inspired a few years ago to see if I could get a world record yellowfin tuna. That led me to learn to hold my breath, educate myself on equipment, get in better shape, learn all about tunas, save money for trips and make friends with other bluewater hunters. Having that goal set many other activities in motion.

I was fortunate to achieve my goal with a 179-pound tuna in Mexico. While the catch itself was exciting, I now realize that it’s the hunt, not the catch—or as they say, “it’s the journey, not the destination.” The lessons learned, the new friends made along the way, the memories—that is what becomes most precious over time. If you’re interested in pursuing a world record, here’s some quick tips: 1. Go where the fish are! Investigate areas, charters, and recent catches. 2. Use the right tool for the job. For example, Wong guns are known for bluewater hunting, Hammerhead is known for slings/polespears, etc. 3. Know the rules in advance so you don’t unwittingly disqualify a record. They can be found on the IUSA website at www. iusarecords.com. 4. Pack a certified scale and tape measure in your dive bag. You never know when that special catch will take place! Chatillon scales are known for being accurate and “certifiable.” 5. Above all, be safe and have fun. Records are an enjoyable pursuit, but they don’t compare to your health and wellbeing. With a bit of persistence and some luck, you might be able to immortalize the fish of a lifetime by claiming a world record. Life is short, so get out and enjoy it! Follow “Sheri Daye” & “The Blue Wild Ocean Adventure Expo” April 22-23, 2017 – Ft. Lauderdale - Instagram and Facebook.

For more Sheri Daye, go to

CAMSPEARFISHING.COM

EXHIBITORS - SEMINARS - WORKSHOPS

freediving, scuba, spearfishing, lobstering, fishing, surfing, SUP marine art, U/W photo and video, watercraft, apparel, travel

April 22 - 23, 2017 - Ft. Lauderdale, Florida - www.TheBlueWild.com

JOIN

ONLINE

• Regional Reports • Featured Articles • Fishing Tips • Giveaways

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Team MHX finds Success in 2016

H

FLW Photo

ow does a team that collectively won over $425K in 2015 go out and improve? “Maintaining the incredible work ethic of our anglers while working directly with our team to continue to develop the best blanks out there,” said Bob McKamey who is The Man when it comes to rod building and managing the team. FLW Tour pro John Cox started off the year with a bang at Lake Okeechobee with a top-12 cut and valuable AOY points. John narrowly missed the Angler of the Year in 2015 but had and extra spark when starting out the new season. An interesting side note to that Okeechobee event was Brad Hallman from Norman, Oklahoma, who was flipping dense reed heads with a custom-built MHX-FS966. “We didn’t initially know Brad was using our blanks until after the win,” Bob said. Come to find out, one of the MHX Regional Staff members Brandon Mosley, who fishes the COSTA series built Hallman’s rods before the event. So with just one event down in the FLW Tour, MHX Blanks had accounted for over $100k, not a bad start. Less than a month later, the Elite Series was on the St. Johns River in Palatka, Fla., and MHX Pro Brandon Lester found himself in the Day 1 lead and newest Team Member Bradley Roy was not far behind. Although he relinquished the lead over the next few days, Brandon and Bradley finished in the Top 20 to earn valuable AOY Points and nice paydays. Not to be outdone, John Cox and the FLW Tour were on Lake Hartwell in South Carolina the very same weekend, and Cox had the lead in that event. Although he did not win wire to wire, he was at the top when the smoke cleared on Sunday. With a Top-12 in the first event and a win in the second event, it seemed Cox wasted no time getting back to his

2015 form. On the regional event side, team member Brandon Mosley maintained a hot hand through the Costa Series and made two out of three cuts while building his rods as well as Hallman’s out on the FLW Tour. As the FLW Tour and Elite Series went on throughout the year, Cox, Roy and Lester continued to produce all while building their own rods. Cox, the most notable, who builds lake-specific rods in his hotel room during practice also has fellow anglers coming to him to fix a tip-top or a guide in an emergency. As the 2016 Season comes to a close, MHX has had an incredible year with multiple titles, a FLW Cup Championship and even team members headed to the Classic for the first time in their careers. Keep an eye out for the MHX Team as 2017 Season begins in January. If you are looking to build your own fishing rods check out MHX Rods at www.fishmhx.com and Mud Hole Custom Tackle at www.MudHole.com.

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How Does Harbor Freight Sell GREAT QUALITY Tools at the LOWEST Prices?

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Customer Rating

ITEM 61258 shown 61840/61297/68146

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1500 WATT DUAL TEMPERATURE HEAT GUN (572°/1112°)

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LIMIT 3 - Good at our stores or HarborFreight.com or by calling 800-423-2567. Cannot LIMIT 5 - Good at our stores or HarborFreight.com or by calling 800-423-2567. Cannot be used with other discount or coupon or prior purchases after 30 days from original be used with other discount or coupon or prior purchases after 30 days from original purchase with original receipt. Offer good while supplies last. Non-transferable. Original purchase with original receipt. Offer good while supplies last. Non-transferable. Original coupon must be presented. Valid through 4/1/17. Limit one coupon per customer per day. coupon must be presented. Valid through 4/1/17. Limit one coupon per customer per day.

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At Harbor Freight Tools, the “comp at” price means that the same item or a similar functioning item was advertised for sale at or above the "comp at" price by another retailer in the U.S. within the past 180 days. Prices advertised by others may vary by location. No other meaning of "comp at" should be implied. For more information, go to HarborFreight.com or see store associate.

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R R 12 VOLT MAGNETIC PE ON PE ON SU UP Customer Rating TOWING LIGHT KIT SU UP CO CO

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15999$395 $9999 $269.99 comp at

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R PE ON SU UP CO • Weighs 73 lbs.

Limit 1 coupon per customer per day. Save 20% on any 1 item purchased. *Cannot be used with other discount, coupon or any of the following items or brands: Inside Track Club membership, Extended Service Plan, gift card, open box item, 3 day Parking Lot Sale item, automotive lifts, compressors, floor jacks, saw mills, storage cabinets, chests or carts, trailers, trenchers, welders, Admiral, Badland, Bremen, CoverPro, Creekstone, Daytona, Diablo, Doyle, Drummond, Earthquake, Franklin, Hercules, Holt, Jupiter, Lynxx, Maddox, Portland, Predator, Quinn, StormCat, Union, Viking. Not valid on prior purchases. Nontransferable. Original coupon must be presented. Valid through 4/1/17.

$

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ITEM 93454/69054 shown 63395/62603 separately.

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OOD 60", 4 DRAWER HARDWENC WORKB H

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800-423-2567. Cannot or HarborFreight.com or by calling LIMIT 3 - Good at our stores or coupon or prior purchases after 30 days from original be used with other discount Offer good while supplies last. Non-transferable. Original purchase with original receipt. through 4/1/17. Limit one coupon per customer per day. coupon must be presented. Valid

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Customer Rating

ITEM 69780 41005 shown

S U CO 1000 LB. CAPACITY SWING-BACK TRAILER JACK

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On All Hand Tools

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ITEM 68784 shown 69387/62270/62744

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44", 13 DRAWER INDUSTRIAL QUALITY ROLLER CABINET

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or by calling stores or HarborFreight.com or prior LIMIT 5 - Good at our other discount or coupon with used 800-423-2567. Cannot be from original purchase with original receipt. purchases after 30 days last. Non-transferable. Original coupon must be er per day. Offer good while supplies Limit one coupon per custom presented. Valid through 4/1/17.

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ITEM 69331/63091/63248 68998 shown

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R 10" SLIDING COMPOUND PE ON Customer Rating MITER SAW SU UP CO

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Coastal Angler Magazine-Dec. / Crystal Coast-Morehead  

Coastal Angler Magazine and our interior (freshwater) publication, The Angler Magazine, are monthly editions dedicated to fishing, boating,...