Types of Fishing
Click on the target species to your right or scroll down the page to learn more about types of fishing in Charleston, SC.
Redfish are pursued year round. In the warmer months when a lot of bait is in the area and the water clarity is down, live baiting is the most effective tactic. Full and new moons, however, offer excellent sight fishing in the grass this time of year. As long as the water is not too hot, these fish can be fooled with flies and weedless soft plastics. They can be stalked by foot and commonly caught just feet from the angler. As the water cools the bait begins to thin out, waters begin to clear, and fish begin to gather in groups along the flats, shell bars, and in creeks.
The fall and winter fishing is mostly sight fishing and can be an exciting time to be on the water. Fish are chased mostly around either side of the low tide. In the dead of the winter it is not uncommon to run across huge schools of hungry fish. Most of the fish in the back waters and flats range from a couple of pounds up to 15 pounds. Larger fish can be targeted certain times of year around the numerous inlets along sand bars and beaches. These fish can exceed 40 pounds in weight.
Speckled Trout are pursued from spring through the early winter with the peak of action in the fall. They can be caught with a variety of different live baits and artificial lures. They typically associate with moving water that is clean. Oyster points, current breaks, and submerged structure are just a few of the many places where they gather. These fish are commonly just a pound or two but can reach in excess of 5 pounds in this area. These fish are also suckers for a lit up dock at night that attracts bait. Custom night trips can bring a lot of fish to the boat, especially with a fly rod as your weapon.
Sheepshead are targeted year round. Some of the best Sheepshead fishing can be in February and March on the numerous nearshore wrecks and reefs. The larger females will go to the deeper water during this time. They are typically caught using fiddler crabs as bait, but will hit oysters, clams, and live shrimp as well. The jetties offer excellent opportunities for big fish as well. These wild looking porgies make excellent table fare. Sheepshead are anywhere from a pound up to more than 15 pounds.
Spadefish & Spanish Mackerel
Spadefish and Spanish Mackerel are typically combined into the same trip given they inhabit the same areas and time periods. These fish live around structure in the nearshore areas. I chase these fish starting in April on into July or August. Typically by the late summer the larger spanish are long gone and the spadefish have been hammered by the fisherman and barracuda and become wary. An added bonus during a spadefishing trip is cobia when they are migrating through. They are very strong and delicious any way you cook them. Spadefish pound for pound are one of the strongest fish and can be awesome on light tackle. The world record spadefish is just over 14 pounds, and I have caught many in the 10 pound class off of Charleston.
Bonnet Head Sharks
Bonnet Head Sharks are a blast on light tackle. They can be caught from mid spring through the summer. They will cruise the very shallow water looking for shrimp and crabs similar to redfish with their fins out of the water. They are an aggressive feeder, put up a great fight, and are surprisingly good on the table. They can be fooled on fly with a little help from some scent or chum and provide a worthy opponent. These fish can also be targeted in the deep holes between creeks and can add an extra bonus while waiting for the grass to flood during a redfish trip.
Cobia make an incredible showing along the Broad River near Beaufort, SC each spring. During times of moving water, live baiting while chumming is very effective. As the tide slows, fish begin to cruise the surface and can be sight cast to with different lures and flies. These brutish fish can also be caught during the summer around buoys and wrecks offshore.