Coastal Angler Magazine | June 2024 | Lowcountry Edition

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SPEND YOUR TIME WHERE IT STANDS STILL ©2023 Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA. All rights reserved. Follow instructional materials and obey all laws. Ride responsibly, wearing protective apparel and USCG-approved personal fotation device. Always ride within your capabilities, allowing time and distance for maneuvering, and respect others around you. Never drink and ride. WaveRunner® is a Yamaha brand personal watercraft and not a generic term. RUN THE WATER ™ // YAMAHAWAVERUNNERS.COM

the importance of boat insurance

Do you love boating? Then you know how fun and relaxing it can be on the open water. But you also know that things can go wrong sometimes, like storms, accidents, theft, or injuries. That’s why boat insurance is so important. Here are some reasons why.

• Boat insurance can help you pay for damage to your boat, or to other boats or docks, up to specifed limits.

• If you borrowed money to buy your boat, your lender may require insurance. And if you want to explore different places, some marinas or waterways may ask you to show proof of insurance.

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Swordfshing is great any time of the year, but during summer you can justify the fuel burn to get where they live. It’s nearly impossible to run that far ofshore in June and not come across diving birds indicative of mahi or tuna. With minimal efort, this can be a nice score to put something in the box if you don’t have luck with the swords. It is normal to get skunked while swordfshing, and I don’t recommend going if you can’t accept that possibility. Te best way to go into it is to be fully prepared for both a fsh of a lifetime or to just chill with friends. Make no mistake, when you do land one of these beasts, it’s some of the most exciting fshing you can experience, and it’s worth the skunk risk.

Although you don’t have to run as far, the same consolation prize applies to heading out for tilefsh, snowy and yellowedge grouper, queen snapper, barrelfsh and rosies. Mahi fshing to, from and during deep-dropping rounds out a trip nicely.

Be prepared for mahi when heading ofshore in summer. Keep at least four rods designated for working a school and more for trolling. J hooks are a must for these head-shaking, sky-rocketing, fippy-fappy, squirm-fsh, but just about any line and bait will do. Tese tasty little dummies aren’t picky and would strike a banana peel if you jigged it right. Tat said, the speed of the bait is a variable you might have to adapt to. Teir toddler mentality kicks in when you try to take a bait away from them, encouraging them to strike something they just turned their nose up at. If you get hit when reeling in your bait, open your bail and give them a chance to eat.

If you get excited about fsh with pointy faces, be prepared for a marlin encounter this time of year. I keep rigged ballyhoo in a trolling spread and a pitch rod set up. Marlin aren’t overly common here, but when you see one, you want to be prepared for more than to simply wave and think, “that was neat.”


ummer in the Keys, albeit hotter than the devil’s you-know-where, is one of the best times to be on the water. With more calm days, open seasons for most species, and mahi peppering ofshore waters, this is the time of year to boogie out and hunt for whatever tickles your fancy.



of our

Marlin enjoy a mahi snack as much as we do and will pop up unexpectedly while mahi fshing. If you have a large live bait, toss that sucker out. If not, a mahi from the box will do in a pinch. Give her time to eat, hang on and enjoy the ride.

Mahi season is already of to a great start for both size and numbers. Come on down and fll your coolers!

Capt. Quinlyn Haddon; Sweet e’nuf charters, marathon, Florida Keys; @captainquinlyn;; (504) 920-6342.

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The “Grandaddy of all Kingfsh Tournaments” will get the First Coast buzzing July 13-20, as the 44th annual Greater Jacksonville Kingfsh Tournament presented by VyStar Credit Union hosts a full week of tournaments with more than $500,000 in cash and prizes.

Te competition kicks of July 13 with the Kingfsh Kick Of Beach Tournament, in which competitors are limited to state waters within 3 miles of shore. Tis event evens the odds for the smaller boats to haul in the largest kingfsh of the day and collect the $50,000 cash prize.

Fishing for the General Tournament begins Friday morning, July 19. Tis cornerstone event pays out to 20 places for both large fsh and aggregate. First place for largest fsh of the tournament will be awarded a Contender 28T with twin 200 Yamaha outboards, an Ameritrail Trailer and a custom T-top and leaning post by Custom Marine. Tis boat package is valued at more than $225,000.

Junior anglers have a shot at a 16foot boat with a 15 hp Yamaha, and the Junior Ofshore Tournament pays out to 25 places. Te Ladies Division pays out to 10 places.

cold beverages, hot food and vendors. Awards Day on Saturday, July 20 is all about celebration, with Kids Zone activities, rafes and seminars.

For inshore anglers, the popular Redfsh Tournament fshes on Saturday, July 20 with payouts of more than $12,000.

Jacksonville Marine Charities is the operating arm of the event, and it supports non-profts throughout the state. Recently, Child Cancer Fund, the Down Syndrome Association and the Child Guidance Center have beneftted from the organization, which also supports other local charity fshing events like Te Premier Trout, Flounder Pounder, Wounded Heroes on the Water and others.

For complete details, visit king

All the boats and fsh coming to the docks at Jim King Park and Boat Ramp at Sisters Creek Park in Jacksonville creates a festival atmosphere. Te

Trout are Eating Your Nymph More than You Realize

Alarge trout rising to a high-riding dry fy is one of life’s true pleasures. It’s pretty darn easy to see. Te fy is bouncing happily along the surface, and with a splash it’s gone.

On the other hand, that same fat rainbow trout sucking in a nymph 6 feet down in a dark run may not be as obvious. When you’re nymphing, speed is of the essence. In a second, that fsh will expel the fy. Tere are a bunch of diferent strike indicators designed to help you see the sometimes-faint signal of a hit. Some work well, some break, some slide, and some just suck.

I love yarn indicators for their sensitivity and the plastic air-flled bobbers for ease of use. Both styles rigged up the leader about twice the depth of the water you’re fshing help you detect the strike. Any hesitation, dive or shif in direction of your indicator might be a hit.

I tell clients, if they think a fsh might even be breathing on the fy to set the hook! You get a heck of a lot more strikes than you think you do when nymph fshing. Any slack between your indicator and fy allows a fsh eat and spit your nymph out, and sometimes go completely undetected.

At close range, high-stick or Czech-nymphing techniques work great. No indicator is needed, as diferent colored lines or coiled-line indicators that straighten when a fsh takes are the deal. A lot of the time, the trout is felt when it takes the fy, or you will see the line suddenly stop. Tis method is deadly in experienced hands.

Another method of strike indication is the use of a big dry fy as the

indicator. Usually, a piece of fuorocarbon tippet is tied to the hook and a nymph or two hang underneath. Tis is a good when the fsh might spook if a plastic bobber crashes on their heads. A buggy looking dry fy is a lot less scary.

Another cool way to catch trout on subsurface fies is to watch them eat it. I call this ninja fshing! You’ll need the sun at your back or directly overhead. Start by locating a particular fsh, and then tie on a brightly colored fy that stands out and is easy to see. Cast upstream of the fsh, and let it drif down to the fsh. Sometimes a fy bounced right into their face will get a refex strike. Tis is a good way to learn how fsh react to fies and how currents afect your ofering. If you are in a pool with several fsh, you might be amazed at how many fsh take a swipe at it. You will then realize how many strikes you’ve been missing.

David Hulsey is a North Georgia-based guide and fy fshing instructor. Call him at (770) 639-4001 and visit Hulsey Fly Fishing at hulsey fy



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Tackle Shop Life

Having grown up in the tackle shop all my life I get to see first hand reports of what is going on fishing wise but also get to see the forefront of new products coming out in the fishing industry! To start off I want to give you a report for what is going on out there! The inshore bite seems to be very steady with good numbers of trout and redfish being caught. We have also seen some good flounder numbers starting to show up in the creeks. I love to use a popping cork with a live minnow or shrimp under that float. Drifting it tight up against the grass line will usually produce trout and reds with the occasional flounder. I usually fish this setup until mid-morning. As the day really warms up, I tend to drop my baits closer to the bottom. In the summer heat those fish will stage right along the bottom in that slightly cooler water. That is where I switch to a carolina rig on the bottom, typically with a mud minnow. You are always looking for clean water with some current to best produce. And don’t forget about throwing artificial lures! One of my favorites is beating the sun rise with a good early morning topwater bite. The explosive action of a redfish nailing a plug off the surface of the water gets me fired up! A super spook jr is my go-to! I change the hooks out for the in-line j hooks. Once the sun gets up higher I switch over to Z-Man Salty Ned Shrimp rigged on a weedless TexasEye Finesse hook. The offshore bite this year has proved so far to be somewhat humbling. Some days you are the hero and some days you are the zero. The dolphin bite is there, yet it’s very sporadic. Some have had good trips catching a couple dozen and some are catching a half dozen. It doesn’t appear that they are here in full numbers but the hopes are the mass is still yet to come, with some decent reports of them continuing to catch them south of us and some more fish to come through. The billfish bite has been more on the steady side, if anything. Several boats have caught some serious numbers of blue marlin and sailfish in recent outings! Nothing beats the adrenaline rush of hooking a big blue and then doing what you can to land her! Fishing started out very deep this year trying to find water temp above 70 degrees out in 1200 feet of water. Weeks later some of that water has pushed in and now fishing mid 70 degree plus water in much shallower for a better shot at mahi, wahoo, and billfish. I got the chance to fish just recently and we caught a nice sailfish but only one mahi! Hoping the billfish bite will remain and the meat fish will show up in bigger numbers soon!

Now to the juicy stuff, NEW TACKLE AND GEAR! Watching the fishing industry change so much in the last ten years is wild to me! It changes just as much as electronics! From the spot lock trolling motors to the new brand circle hooks it’s always evolving and getting better! You look at the Omni sonars for the offshore crowds and the new Power Pole Move trolling motors! Always changing and always getting better. While we can’t highlight all the new stuff I wanted to list a few:

FireTailz came out with a new dredge bait for the offshore crowd. They are lightweight, have little drag while trolling and look amazing!

Seasucker has been a phenomenal product with so many different uses! From cam lock teaser/outrigger products to the new Seasucker Double rod holder that you can mount virtually everywhere!

Turtlebox is the new waterproof speaker that plays through Bluetooth on your phone! It floats in the pool and is very loud, yet very clear sounding music!

Fenwick launched a new series of rods that are extremely affordable, extremely light, and very sensitive. You owe it to yourself to come check them out in the shop!

While there are a ton of other exciting things new, we encourage you to visit one of our shop locations to check them out for yourself! And for the fishing reports you can always stop by or call to get an update on what is happening out there! We also have a lot of informational videos on our website to better help you catch more fish!


Since I have become a successful fisherman, one of the most asked questions is, “Jerry, what is your fishing secret?” What is my fishing secret? Well, let’s just start by expanding secret to secrets because in truth the secrets are many, and it is all education. Education becomes experience when applied, but what kind of education? Well, you have to narrow down exactly what you need to learn first, and in order to do so, the first step would be knowing what kind of fish you are going to target. Second would be knowing the location that fish resides in, meaning is it in freshwater? Is it in saltwater, cold or warm fast-running rivers, ponds, lakes, etc.? The third would be its diet, knowing what that species of fish feeds on and what time of year do they feed on certain foods. Then you would need to know what type of terminal tackle should you use, including what kind of rod and reel, what size, what size fishing line. After all, it wouldn’t seem feasible going after 40” Red Drum in the surf with a brim buster fishing combo. What’s great about fishing is that as you become experienced, you find out that you can target more than one species of fish in one location using the same baits, either artificial or live, giving a fisherman more opportunities to catch fish. If one species is not biting at the time, you can hopefully hook and catch one of the others. So let’s make an educational checklist of the steps as follows:

1. What species of fish are you going to target?

2. Location, where can you find that species of fish?

3. What does that species of fish feed on and what is its primary diet?

4. What kind of terminal tackle would you need for the bait or lures being used?

5. What size reel, rod and fishing line?

Definition of steps:

1. “What species” meaning the name of the fish, like Spotted Seatrout, Red Drum, Flounder, Whiting, Croaker, King Mackerel, Spanish Mackerel, Tarpon, Catfish, Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, etc.

2. “Location” meaning what type of waterway can the fish be found in, this also includes what time of year in that waterway will that fish be there.

3. “What is the fish’s primary diet and what does it feed on” meaning what kind of food does the fish like to eat, does it eat Shrimp, Crabs, small fish, if so what species of small fish, what size.

4. “Terminal tackle” meaning the size of fishing hooks, what kind of weight, if any, will be needed, what size leader line, will it need to be a steel leader line or a fluorocarbon leader line, will you need swivels, and what style rig will you be assembling, like a Carolina rig or a drop shot rig, etc.

5. “What size rod, reel and fishing line” meaning will you need a reel in the size of a 1,000 which will accommodate up to about 8 pound test fishing line comfortably, or will you need a bigger reel, which can go from a 2,000, 3,000, 4,000, 5,000 or 8,000, and as the reel size increases, so does the pound test of the fishing line. The size rod used will follow—you use a rod that will match the reel size and line size you will be using to target the fish.

What’s great about fishing is after you educate yourself with the basics of the sport of fishing, you can advance your education. I personally through the years use lighter and smaller fishing gear to


The Secret to Fishing

target bigger fish, honing in my skills and my fighting techniques, battling the fish. Of course, this gives the fish a little more of an upper hand and more of a chance of getting away, but it is quite self- gratifying to know that I landed such a massive fish on a lot smaller equipment and line, winning and landing the fish by technique.

Another thing as you gain experience through the years, you find yourself moving to a lot of artificial bait, and in doing so, the rods and reels you purchase are no longer just about the right size, they are about the right quality. That is because the rod and reel are no longer just a rod and reel, they are a control arm, like a puppeteer and your lure is your puppet, and using techniques by moving your arm in different directions and long pulls, reeling fast, reeling slow, popping across the top of the water, opening your bale and letting your lure drop, closing the bale and reeling your lure back in quickly. All of this is to make the artificial you are using look real and alive. Your objective is to mimic. Sometimes it is mimicking a wounded fish in its dying moments. Sometimes it’s

Channel Fishing With Jiggin Jerry or follow me on Facebook @fwjigginjerry

mimicking a bait that is startled and sensed a predator nearby. This generates a reaction strike because some fish are just like cats— they can’t stand it when they think something is about to get away from them.

You will notice that the fishing reels you will start wanting for techniques like this are going to need to be lighter, lighter as in the weight of the reel itself, more ball bearings added to the reel because of repetitive reeling and casting. The reel has to be able to handle and move freely constantly, unlike heavy bulky reels with bushings that are more or less used just to throw live bait out on the bottom and wait. The rod will have to be lighter as well and have high-quality guides so that your fishing line can move freely through the guides so that the line does not become overheated and frayed by the repetitive casting and retrieving.

So for all interested and for all my fans out there that have asked me what my fishing secret was, I hope this sheds a little light on the secret that is education. I hope this helps with your next or first fishing adventure. Like I always say good luck out there and have fun fishing!

Soft plastic Paddle Tail & Curly Tail Grubs YouTube

WFolly Beach Pier

ith the weather and water in its prime for Charleston, it creates the perfect fishing conditions. It also means the kids are out of school, and the Summer officially begins. Out at the Folly Beach Pier, we begin seeing the full spectrum of what is caught here. By now we’ve seen a lot of black drum, Spanish mackerel, speckled trout, pompano, sheepshead, and blues.

One of the main target fish that you can see caught out here is the king mackerel, and June is the prime time to catch them. While your average joe may never get the opportunity to catch one of these monsters, we have people regularly fishing here with the hopes of taking a king home. King mackerel are top feeders, feeding on schools of smaller fish like blues, menhaden, and mullet. If you stand on the diamond long enough on an ideal day where the wind is blowing from the southeast, and the water is flat and free of mud, you’ll see them jumping out of the water a couple hundred yards off the pier. Catching a king mackerel is a complicated process, in which there are multiple ways of doing it, but we only allow one way, which is the trolley rig. That involves two rods, one used for anchoring to slide your trolley with your fish down, and the other rod is your fighting rod, which is attached to the anchoring rod and uses a clip and trolley to hold the fish topwater. The most common bait we see used out here for king mackerel is bluefish. Our regular king mackerel anglers say bluefish are like king “candy”. While you may want to do your research before giving it a shot, we highly recommend you come out here and at least watch the anglers in action.

June is a busy month out at Folly Beach, and we would love to see everybody out here! We’ll have our 13th Annual Jerry Pierce Memorial Take a Kid Fishing Tournament hosted by the Folly Beach Anglers on June 1st starting at 9am and ending at 1pm. This is a free event, which provides free rod combos and bait to the first 250 participants. For more information check out Take a Kid Fishing – Folly Beach Anglers on Facebook. We will also be hosting our second Moonlight Mixer on the pier on June 14th, which will start at 7:00pm and ends at 10:00pm. You can register online at to skip the wait, and it will cost $10 per person over 3 years old. In addition to that, we will also be hosting our second fishing tournament of the year on June 22nd which will go from 6am-2pm. We will have tons of awesome prizes to give out to the winners, and as well as raffles that all participants will have a chance of winning. There is a $12 fee for anyone coming out to participate, with lower rates for current/past military members, seniors 60+, children u12, and annual pier fishing pass holders. For more information go to ccprc. com or give us a call at the Folly Beach Pier, 843-762-9516.

Black drum
COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM JUN 2024 LOWCOUNTRY 7 Noah O’Brien, Operations Manager II Folly Beach Pier 101 E Arctic Ave, Folly Beach, SC 29439 Office:
Bull red Charlie Hamlin, Sales Associates Charleston, South Carolina (843) 709-6364 Cell (800) 286-8073 Office >>Rates as low as 7.25%* *Rate subject to change
843-762-9516 /
O’ /

LAND Where to fish from in Charleston


Folly Beach Pier

Folly River Park


Mt. Pleasant Pier

Pitt St. Bridge


Bowens Island Sol Legare Sunset/Demetre Park


Higgins Pier

West Ashley Greenway

West Ashley Park Northbridge Park


Waterfront Park Pier

Colonial Lake

Alberta Sottile Lake Brittlebank Park


TMount Pleasant Pier

ypically in June the harbor temperature reaches 80 degrees and we see a variety of species show up. Expect to see whiting, black drum, sea trout, Spanish mackerel and others get in the mix with the reds, flounder, and sheepshead. June is one of those months that should be great for fishermen of all experience levels.

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get started. You can get an inexpensive rod combo with 10-20-pound test line and a 2-drop rig or Carolina rig and you’re almost ready to go. This setup is commonly used when pier fishing and the rigs can be purchased in the River Watch Café and Gift Shop on the pier. In order to hold the bottom, you’ll want a 1.5 to 2-ounce weight under most circumstances. One of the biggest mistakes people make around the pier is using hooks that are too big. Keep it simple and stick with a size 1, 2, 1/0, or 2/0 hook. We encourage the use of kahle or circle hooks when possible as these offer a better chance for the safe release of fish that will not be kept. Now you just need some bait and a daily fishing pass from the shop and you’re ready to fish.

When it comes to bait there are many choices, and some work better than others on any given day. Frozen shrimp on a bottom rig is the most common bait and our top seller by far. When putting shrimp on the hook, you’ll want to cut it into smaller pieces and remove the shell. Removing the shell sounds counterintuitive, but it releases more scent into the water and the bait will stay on the hook better. A fishing buddy once said that elephants eat peanuts and there’s definitely truth

to that. Leaving chunks hanging off the hook will allow baitfish to pick you clean and soon you’ll be fishing on credit. If you want live bait, you’ll want to stop off and visit our friends at Haddrell’s Point Tackle and Supply or bring a cast net to catch your own. It’s best to check out the pier at low tide before throwing a net so you’re familiar with where the rebar from the old bridge is located.

Many anglers have their “lucky” spots, but we’ve seen fish caught from one end of the pier to the other. If one spot isn’t working, you may want to try a new one during a different tide. Trout and flounder tend to be more prevalent the last 2 hours of the outgoing tide and the first 2 hours of the incoming one. Other species, such as red drum and blue fish, seem to be caught during the higher tides in locations closer to the grass line. The one area to be cautious of until you learn the waters is the very tip of the pier. There’s 350 cubic yards of old bridge debris right off the end of the pier that has claimed many rigs over the years. Once you are comfortable with other spots, we’ll be glad to help you learn that one as well.

Our next Cast-Off Fishing Tournament is Saturday, June 15 from 6am – 2pm. Registration is just $5 plus the daily fishing fee. Prizes will be awarded to the top 3 fish by weight, top youth catch, and aggregate weight of up to 5 fish. Hope to see you out at the pier! Be sure to visit for information about fishing tournaments and other offerings available this summer.


For any additional information about the pier or what’s biting this week feel free to call the River Watch Cafe & Gift Shop on the pier at 843-762-9946

Chris Pounder, CPRP Manager Mount Pleasant Pier

Juan with a nice trout

The Ultimate Sleigh Ride

When people hear that you love to kayak fish, they often doubt the stability of your vessel or how serious of an angler you can be, especially when their expertise is from a boat. And honestly, if I had not spent the last decade kayak fishing reeling in those same massive fish from my kayak, I might slightly agree with them.

I mean how can 40 lbs. of polyethylene plastic floating on the mere surface of the Folly River; be stable enough to keep a novice Lady angler up right and floating. All while reeling in a true fish of a lifetime which was pulling her around like ole saint nick at Christmas time.

Well, this past month I hosted and guided twelve formidable lady anglers out of Folly Beach, SC along with the help of my incredible first mate for this event, Kathy Lundy of Beaufort, SC.

Where under my Women-owned Business, Pluff Mud Princess Outdoors, LLC. I work with multiple amazing fishing companies in the industry through social media marketing. As well as getting to host & instruct educational events to encourage and empower other women and youth. To start fishing and learn along the way!

See, most people in fishing will say “Come out and have fun fishing.” But if you never had the opportunity and/or any guidance to simply learn how to fish, then how do you ever begin or “Have fun Fishing”?

And that is exactly the issue I faced growing up without my late father’s guidance or expertise being given to me. Honestly for a while, I felt lost and like I did not belong in fishing. Especially as a woman in a very male dominated sport/ industry.

Which is a huge reason, I am so enthusiastic and driven to create, host and instruct these incredible women & youth educational events. And the impact created by these opportunities is not only tremendous for that individual angler who attends. But that impact will also transcend across sport and industry for more inclusion and acceptance for everyone.

So, about the time the drag of that 3000 series reel started screaming… So did that wonderful lady angler as she knew for sure she had the true fish of a lifetime!

Caught simply on a cut piece of mullet, 2/0 circle hook Carolina rig with a 3/4 oz egg weight.

Check us out!

And there was not a disappointed face in the creek when her kayak suddenly started jolting forward!

As if the kayak was motorized by the incredible strength of the huge fish that was tugging on the end of her line.

Furthermore, not only was this the true definition of a Lowcountry sleigh ride.

This truly was the biggest redfish that this lady angler had ever landed, especially for her first-time kayak fishing!

But this was not that experienced ole fishes’ first rodeo. As he knew if he could drag her light kayak around, he could make his way to the safety of the dock and increase his chances of breaking her off!

But right as he forced his way over to the safety of those oyster serrations. I was able to swoop in and guide her kayak backwards in my Pedal Drive Hobie over to the protection of the Spartina grass bank.

Where we safely and joyfully landed a BEAUTIFUL 29” redfish together. Which most anglers, let alone kayak anglers will spend years fishing for. And certainly, never expect to land way back in a smaller creek in a highly fished/ pressured area.

And so, it just goes to show you that no matter what vessel you choose to fish from. A little bit of guidance, encouragement and fresh bait will get you anywhere!

Also, until you experience the joy of a Sleigh ride in the Lowcountry, you may never know that same love of kayak fishing that all twelve ladies left with that day.

But just remember, “Fishing is for everyone, but the opportunity to learn should be too”.

So, be kind, share your passions with others and keep your Lines tight. I hope to see you all at my next fishing event soon!



June 8

Lowcountry Open

Family friendly fishing tournament with inshore, Kingfish and offshore divisions, benefitting Prostate Cancer research, awareness, survivors and their families. More info to come.

June 15

Haddrell’s Point / Fin to Feather Fly Casting Clinic

Contact Fin to Feather for more information

June 15

Charleston County Parks

Cast Off Fishing Tournament

Mt. Pleasant Pier • Info at

June 19-22

Carolina Billfish Classic

Charleston Harbor Resort and Marina

June 22

Charleston County Parks

Cast Off Fishing Tournament

Folly Beach Pier • Info at

July 3-6

HMY Lowcountry Cup

Toler's Cover Marina

July 17-20

Edisto Invitational

Billfish Tournament

More info to follow

August 18-20

Marshwear Clothing

Holy City Tarpon Tournament

More info to follow

Near Shore

Greetings from Edisto Island!

Greetings from Edisto Island!

It may not officially be summer but it’s already hot and the gnats are feasting around here.

The water along the coast is heating up as well and that means the gnats aren’t the only things feasting on fresh food.

I run three different boats for my local charter business in order to embark on whatever in-shore adventure or circumstance. I’ve got the micro-skiff for backcountry reds, the Action Craft for crossing big bays quickly and the big 21ft Carolina Skiff center console so we can take the whole family. However, all my rigs are designed for inland waterways.

Only during certain days when the wind and waves are just right I

venture out into the ocean. Now I’m not talking 60 miles out trolling in over 100 foot of water. Personally I’ve never been into dragging baits all day waiting for a bite. Maybe it’s my inshore roots but I just can’t get my head around fishing without a fishing rod in my hand haha!

Currently my thing is either jigging for fish on the nearshore reefs or looking for birds hovering above schools of Spanish and False Albacore. If it’s calm for only the first hour or two after sunrise, I’ll cruise up and down the beach looking for birds above schooling fish. If it’s a calm day for more than 4 or more hours after sunrise, I’ll look for the birds on my way to the public reefs.

Last week the weather was perfect and I just so happened to have a light work load so I decided to head out to the “big pond”. After going through my entire list of friends that I enjoy fishing with and being begrudgingly turned down by each due to it being a weekday; I decided to take Mr. Pin Pin, my adopted mutt. We think he’s half boxer and half black lab but who knows man. He doesn’t have a job and he’s always down for an adventure. We hit the water just before first light and we watched the sun come up as we headed out to the first public reef off my island.

About two and a half miles out I saw my first surprise; a bunch of Spinner sharks jumping out of the water and doing barrel roles. I slowed down and approached them for a closer look. I had my (Tiger Stik Elite rod by Penn) rigged up with a (3 oz. Diesel Eye jighead by Eyestrike) rigged and ready. When I got close enough to cast I popped her in neutral and jumped into the bow. The bait hit the water right in the middle of all those sharks thrashing on the surface and BOOM. It peeled

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drag for about 30 straight second and the second I tightened the drag POP! I guess 80 lb. mono wasn’t going to do the trick this time.

After that I continued out to the reef with Mr. Pin Pin as m first mate. As we made our final approach to the buoy I noticed Spanish Mackerel jumping around so I pulled out my trusty fly rod. I double hauled the line about 5o feet out in front of the boat and BANG. They couldn’t stay off that Clouser Minnow.

Once I had my fill of that I turned on the electronics and started looking for some good bottom. It didn’t take long before I found some. Using a white Buck Tail jig I dropped all the way to the bottom and started jigging. Black Sea Bass, more Spanish and a fair amount of large Weak Fish were all willing to hit that setup.

Finally I switched to a 3/8 oz Eye Strike, open face hook jig head. I paired this up with white Z-man jerk shad about 3 inches long. The Red Snapper couldn’t get enough of that soft plastic. Generally I don’t get into

Snapper like that unless Im in a little deeper water but today was special.

What started out as a quick run and gun was now turning into an all-day affair! Of course the only things I brought along to snack on were a can of peaches and a half a bag of peanuts. If I would have prepared a nice lunch, the fishing would have inevitably been slow.

After throwing back a lot of Red Snapper and a lot more Weak fish I decided it was time to head back in. I spend almost all my time in shore but days like this make me want a fourth boat. How I am still happily married is a mystery in itself but I guess fish aren’t the only thing I can catch!

Captain Justin Ravenel Ravenel Fishing Charters



Instagram: justin_ravenel


Photos from the SALTT, (Student Angler League Tournament Trail), ’23-’24 season out of the Berkeley and Georgetown area. They will be bringing 2 tournaments to the Charleston area for the next school year and 2 tournaments to the Beaufort area also. This is great fun and experiences for anglers of all ages.

Bryant Poston with 2 fish at 3.44 pounds (big fish at 1.83) Send Us Your Catch Photos! Upload your high-quality photos (at least 500kb) along with all of the catch details at: Ayden Rouhselang
with 2 reds
Raymond Duenas caught this 8 pound sheepshead at the Mount Pleasant Pier Bella Holt got second place with 2 fish at 2.38 pounds Fisher Thomas with a 2.5 pound red to win the elementary division Owen Colvard with 2 reds at 3.15 pounds

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Released to the Public: Bags of Vintage Buffalo Nickels Historic 1920-1938 “Buffalos” by the Pound FREE Stone Arrowhead with every bag LOW AS $49 plus shipping & handling FREE Liberty Head Nickel with One Full Pound Asset Marketing Services, LLC d/b/a GovMint is a retail distributor of coin and currency issues and is not afliated with the U.S. government. Te collectible coin market is unregulated, highly speculative and involves risk. Prices, facts, fgures and populations deemed accurate as of the date of publication but may change signifcantly over time. All purchases are expressly conditioned upon your acceptance of AMS’s Terms and Conditions (; to decline, return your purchase pursuant to our Return Policy ( Keeping your purchase means you agree to the Terms and Conditions. © 2024 GovMint. All rights reserved. 1-877-566-6468 Offer Code VBB653-08 Please mention this code when you call. 2 EASY WAYS TO ORDER: CALL TOLL FREE OR GO ONLINE Representatives are able to take your calls from 8am-8pm M-F, 9am-7pm Sat and Sun Central Time To order online, place phone camera over QR code to scan or use link below:


I’ve long been a proponent of chumming up a place on the bottom with squid and then feeding grouper a big live bait.

However, afer the last few trips, I’m starting to rethink this tactic because of the number of sharks we’ve been catching.

I’ve never seen as many sharks as we are seeing right now. Te bottom is covered with them, and the top layer of the water column is full of them. Tis past trip, we put out fve Spanish mackerel on light lines hoping for a wahoo bite. We caught fve sharks almost instantly. One of these bites was the biggest tiger shark I’ve ever seen. It was at least 12 feet long and 2 feet wide across the head. Te rest of them were standard 6- to 9-footers; it takes a toll on you to get them to the boat for dehooking.

apart to create a lot of smell down on the bottom. Ten I drop live pinfsh or small snappers to the grouper drawn in by the “chum.”

Lately, I’ve resorted to dropping big, pretty live baits frst to see if we can get a few grouper bites before the taxman arrives, and it’s become a matter of WHEN rather than IF he shows up. It’s “hit-and-run” fshing. We pull up on a nice mark with pinfsh and grunts already rigged on the jig. I hit the spot lock on the Rhodan and drop in for a few good bites. When the sharks show up, we just move up or down the ledge. Lather, rinse and repeat as ofen as needed. Granted, we haven’t boated as many of the smaller snappers or seabass for the cooler, but we’ve caught some beautiful grouper with this “hitand-run” style of bottom banging. Te wahoo are diferent story. We quit putting the light line out due to the instant shark bite. I’ve got to fgure something out for that. From now until the end of October or the frst of November, wahoo will be everywhere and nowhere at the same time. Tey will come inside the edge of the Gulf Stream following big stacks of bait. As usual, some king mackerel fsherman will catch a 100-pounder on a live menhaden in less than 100 feet of water while chasing a tournamentgrade kingfsh.

Between all the American red snappers—which we aren’t allowed to keep—and all the sharks, we’ve been run of of several square miles of bottom lately. Tankfully, we’ve found some of the grouper we’re looking for, but I’m seriously rethinking the “chumming” part of the tactics I usually employ. Normally, I begin on a spot by dropping whole squid on jigs, which the smaller fsh pick

I said all that to say this: We’re going to take more pinfsh and less squid to catch “hit-and-run” grouper. Someone please educate me on a bait that will not catch a red snapper!

For more info on the jigs and bait, check out Tim Barefoot’s YouTube channel and website,

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C-HAWK MITZI SKIFF: & Two Brands, One Philosophy

In the boating world, brand loyalty is earned. Over years, boater experiences with vessels— good and bad, on and of the water—are what build the reputations of boats. It might, or might not, come as a surprise that two brands that have garnered sterling reputations in the industry for functionality and dependability are manufactured by the same builder.

C-Hawk and Mitzi Skif are both built in the U.S.A. with the same philosophy that simplicity leads to vessels that are easier and more afordable to operate and maintain. A simple, well-designed and well-built boat, comes with less hassle, leaving more time to spend on the water. Especially among anglers, this philosophy has built large followings for both brands among people who are more interested in fshing and boating than they are in pampering their pretty boats.

“We build a keep-it-simple-stupid boat. If you want something you can sof scrub at the end of the day and put it away, you’re my guy,” said Brad Grubbs, the owner and manufacturer of C-Hawk and Mitzi Skif. “We set out to make boats that are afordable to operate and afordable to own, and the philosophy has worked.”

Mitzi Skiff

Although Mitzi Skif originated in the 1990s for a singular purpose, the same philosophy for simplicity applies. Fly fshing the fats drove Tom Mitzlaf to design a skif with quiet maneuverability, extremely shallow draf and a clean deck layout to make him a better fsherman. It was simple by necessity, and it revolutionized the industry.

Tree decades later, Mitzi’s line of 15’, 16’and 17’ skifs achieves those purposes exceptionally well, and they have led the way with innovations that make them the fats boats other boat builders imitate. A Mitzi does everything the pricier skifs do, yet they are afordable enough for any angler to own and operate.

“If it ain’t broke, don’t fx it,” Grubbs quipped. Mitzi builds skifs for anglers more interested in fshing than in spending a lot of money.

Te 15’ remains a purpose-built fats boat for one or two anglers to sneak up on wary fsh in super-skinny water. Te 17’ models are more multi-purpose. Tey can fsh three anglers, and while they are primarily a fats boat, they perform admirably as bay boats with a modifed V-hull and an 11-degree deadrise at transom to reduce hull slap. Rolled gunnels knock down spray for an exceptionally dry ride.

Tey are solid and durable for long years of heavy use, and from hideaway pushpole holders to fush-mount hardware, Mitzi delivers clean and stable casting decks designed specifcally for hard-core anglers.

C-Hawk Boats

C-Hawk has been around since the mid1970s and ofers lines of bombproof 16’ to 29’ center consoles and 22’ to 29’ sport cabins that were originally developed for commercial applications. C-Hawks remain widely used commercially, and many recreational

boaters also see the value in a vessel that’s built to take a beating.

“Really, we just took a commercial-duty boat and put a little lipstick on it,” Grubbs said. “ Te boat is as tough as it ever was. It’s been the same boat for nearly 50 years.”

At their core, C-Hawks are hardcore workhorses, and the center console models have become popular with charter captains because they are built to withstand hard use for years of trouble-free boating. Grubbs pointed to C-Hawk’s 25 CC as a great example of what the brand has become. It’s an extremely stable fshing platform that drafs just 12 inches, and with a 300 horsepower max it’ll take you anywhere you need to go from skinny water to light ofshore duty. What’s more, it’s infnitely customizable from the factory.

“We can mix and match consoles, fsh boxes, full transoms, cut transoms, bare hulls… you name it,” Grubbs said. “ Tere are some recreational guys adding towers and sight fshing for cobia, and such. Everything we do is built around keep it simple, keep it efcient, keep it easy to maintain, keep it cost efective to own and operate. Tey are all unique… no cookie cutter trailer queens here. Te 25 is a great example of what C-Hawk is.”

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Every month, I provide tips to help make you a better angler. Tis month’s tip is one of the most important. With so many tackle and gear options on the market these days, staying organized on the water is difcult. Here are a few things I do that make me a more efcient angler because I know exactly where to go when looking for the right tool for the job.

Storage options vary depending on the type of fshing you do. I’m going to stick to bass fshing, but don’t be afraid to alter these tips to your style of fshing.

When storing baits, hooks, line and gear, your No. 1 enemy is moisture. Keeping your tools dry should be a priority because it keeps hooks sharp and everything else rust-free. I store almost everything in waterproof boxes or bags. Tese storage options might be a little more expensive up-front, but when compared to losing a whole box of lures or hooks to rust, your investment will pay for itself many times over.Another good trick I’ve learned is to use DampRid moisture absorbers. Here in Florida, where humidity is high and temperatures fuctuate, condensation builds up in boat compartments. Te best thing to do is to take your tackle out of the boat and move it inside, but this is not an option if you fsh a lot and have a lot of gear. DampRid containers help keep everything safe and dry by absorbing moisture from the air in your boat’s storage compartments.

Now let’s talk about organization. If you’re a bass angler, you have a ton of sof plastics in diferent styles and colors as well as packs of hooks, jigs and weights to fsh them. I use plastic Sterlite containers with latches to store my bags of sof plastics. You can buy them at Walmart. I organize my baits by the type of sof plastic they are, and I label each container. On the water, this makes it easy grab the style of bait I’m looking for. Also, before I leave the house, labels make it easy to load what I think I’ll need for the day and remove what I don’t.

On the hook side of organization, one mistake people make when organizing hooks is to take them out of the original packaging to place them in compartment boxes. Tis is a huge mistake. Hook packs are clearly labeled by size and style, which allows you to quickly identify them on the water. Also, hook packs are designed to keep hooks sharp, untangled and dry. You can store your hooks in a box, but you should leave them in their original packaging.

Hopefully, these tips help you be more efcient on the water and save you some money by protecting your investments.

Tyler Woolcott is a professional tournament angler and guide. Check out his website at

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