Fishing the Inlet In Fall
Recently we asked competitive light tackle angler, Captain Rennie Clark to take a few minutes to share his thoughts and experience on the benefits and ways to fish the inlets of the Coastal Carolinas. Rennie informed us that the inlets are prime fishing grounds in the fall months for great species like Speckled Trout, Tarpon and even the Flounder start heading out. The cooler weather creates a move and changes the fish feeding habits. Bait, such as Mullet, start to move south in search of the warmer water. Shrimp also begin to move offshore at the same time.
Right now, Speckled Trout is one of the hottest species for fishing the inlets. The trick is to look for eddies and drop-offs. This is especially great where multiple rivers join to create a wide array of moving bait options. The top or turn of the tide is your best time to start. This is when the water movement is at its best. Bait options vary from Mirro Lures, top waters and plastics like Gulp as well as live shrimp if you have access to it. The Fall months also require a change in your lure colors. Colors like pink and electric chicken are good choices. Using your trolling motor, cast toward the banks to bring the fish out into open water. Also, while trolling the banks, be sure to look for holes or drop-offs that may contain bait. When you find those prime hot spots, lock in that location on your GPS. Do not use your anchor if possible. Keep your boat moving and be looking for fish movement, a change in depth as well as the changing tideline. Keep a good distance off the bank, remembering that top water and artificial lures need room.
Also remember that that inlet is actually a large funnel of bait for the larger fish to take advantage of. Fall is the time of year that bait moves the most, so fishing the inlets can be great. Places like the Georgetown, SC area and Wilmington’s Cape Fear River as well as the Savannah River between Hilton Head, SC and Savannah can be hot locations with the right approach.