AHQ INSIDER South Grand Strand (SC) Fall 2019 Fishing Report – Updated November 1 Reviewed by Momizat on . -- November 1 Water temperatures have remains in the low to mid-70s in Murrells Inlet.  Shrimp and mullet are still prolific.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843- -- November 1 Water temperatures have remains in the low to mid-70s in Murrells Inlet.  Shrimp and mullet are still prolific.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843- Rating: 0
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AHQ INSIDER South Grand Strand (SC) Fall 2019 Fishing Report – Updated November 1

November 1

Water temperatures have remains in the low to mid-70s in Murrells Inlet.  Shrimp and mullet are still prolific.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) has regular and jumbo mud minnows, live shrimp, live fiddler crabs, live finger mullet, live pinfish, salt clam, and salt sand fleas as well as a full range of frozen baits.

Water temperatures are finally beginning to drop, but already Captain J Baisch (843-902-0356) reports that trout fishing is getting stronger on the Grand Strand.  Since pinfish are still abundant fishing live shrimp in the creeks can be a nuisance, and so suspending jerkbaits and grubs have both been working pretty well.  As the bait stealers migrate away then floating shrimp under a cork will become the premier pattern.

The best places to catch trout are over oyster shells covered with water on higher tides.

The action for slot-sized redfish has picked up, with mullet the best bait for catching them.  Fish are around oyster beds and areas where gutter creeks drain the marsh.

There are also bull reds to be caught off the beaches.

With persistent northeast winds recently, muddy water conditions have lent themselves to black drum fishing, and at the tip of the jetties the bite remains very good.  They have also been eating well at low tide inside the creeks on shrimp fished in deep holes and around structure.

Inshore flounder fishing continues to be just so-so.

October 18

Water temperatures have dropped into the low to mid-70s in Murrells Inlet.  Shrimp and mullet are still prolific.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) has regular and jumbo mud minnows, live shrimp, live fiddler crabs, live finger mullet, live pinfish, salt clam, and salt sand fleas as well as a full range of frozen baits.

As would be expected in October, Captain J Baisch (843-902-0356) reports that fishing is picking up on the Grand Strand.  There have been some good trout catches inside the creeks early on surface lures, and when the sun comes up artificial lure anglers are switching over to suspending jerkbaits.  Right now fish are on a better mullet than shrimp bite.

The best places to catch trout are over oyster shells covered with water on higher tides.

There are quite a few rat redfish around in the creeks, and there are also some fish over 27 inches.  However, there are not a lot of fish in the slot.  With pinfish still around fishing live mullet is the best bet.  Fish are around oyster beds and areas where gutter creeks drain the marsh.

On windy, muddy days the black drum fishing at the tip of the jetties has been fantastic.  Black drum feed best in low light conditions so they like muddy water, which also means they can be caught really well at night (when a lot of the shrimp bait stealers are hiding from predators).

Inshore flounder fishing has been off.

A few hundred yards off the beaches around hard bottom areas in 15-20 feet, bull red drum, weakfish and big whiting can be caught.  Today Captain J caught about 17 whiting up to two pounds, 20 or 30 weakfish (you can only keep one per person), and several bull reds.  They will all take pieces of cut mullet.

Through Thanksgiving there is the potential for king mackerel to be caught, but they just have not been around.  To the north and south the fishing has been good.

Captain J Baisch with a bull drum caught today

Captain J Baisch with a bull drum caught today

September 30

With no significant cooling water temperatures are still very warm in Murrells Inlet.  Shrimp and mullet are still prolific, and the mullet run remains the biggest in years.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) has regular and jumbo mud minnows, live shrimp, live fiddler crabs, live finger mullet, live pinfish, salt clam, and salt sand fleas as well as a full range of frozen baits.

Even though air and water temperatures have yet to really drop fishing has picked up on the south end of the Grand Strand, and Captain J Baisch (843-902-0356) reports that catches of flounder, redfish and trout have signficantly improved.  It’s only a slight exaggeration to say that more fish have been caught inshore in the last week than in the previous few months!  However, the flounder have been a little on the small side with a fairly low keeper ratio.  With finger mullet still so abundant it’s hard to beat mullet on a Carolina rig for most species.

In the surf pompano, whiting and black drum are still being caught, while catches of redfish appear to have slowed down off the beaches.  Bluefish have not been as thick as could be expected with this many mullet around, but they should be coming.

There are still some bull reds being caught at the jetties but the numbers haven’t quite arrived yet.

Nearshore there are a lot of flounder being caught out at the 3-Mile, and Spanish mackerel are around close to the beaches and at the jetties.  However, while there are always some fish busting they don’t seem to be in huge schools.  And with so much bait around they are a little selective.

This should be a prime king mackerel time but right now the action is a little spotty.

A good day this week with Captain J. Baisch

A good day this week with Captain J. Baisch

September 20

After two recent storms the water inside the Murrells Inlet jetties is warm and muddy.  Shrimp are prolific but the September mullet run is noteworthy as one of the biggest in years; it should continue for some time.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) has regular and jumbo mud minnows, live shrimp, live fiddler crabs, live finger mullet, live pinfish, salt clam, and salt sand fleas as well as a full range of frozen baits.

Shortly after Dorian left the waters on the south end of the Grand Strand got pummeled by another offshore storm, and the net result is that a lot of new water has come into the inlets but it is very dirty.  What is clear is that the big reds have started to show up, with some fish over the slot being caught at the jetties and some bull drum being caught off the live bottom areas in 15-22 feet off Surfside Beach.  Cut mullet are working well.

Kelly Baisch with a nice one

Kelly Baisch with a nice one

The flounder catch has been okay but not exceptional since the storms, and there have been some good days and some not-so-good days for trout.  One angler caught six nice keeper-sized fishing trolling paddletail grubs in Murrells Inlet, but the next two days only caught one or two.

In the surf bluefish and whiting are being caught, and if the water ever clears before it gets cold some pompano should show up again.

September 13

Inshore water temperatures inside the Murrells Inlet jetties are around 84 degrees.  There are plenty of shrimp back in the creeks after storm, and the mullet migration is well underway, including the big roe mullet.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) has regular and jumbo mud minnows, live shrimp, live fiddler crabs, live finger mullet, live pinfish, salt clam, and salt sand fleas as well as a full range of frozen baits.

The first pretty, clean water since the storm finally arrived again yesterday.

Post-Dorian the fishing has gotten better on the south end of the Grand Strand, and

Captain J Baisch (843-902-0356) reports that perhaps the most exciting development is that the big bull reds have started to show up.  They can be found in live bottom areas just off the beaches in 20-30 feet of water, and they will take cut mullet or most any other cut bait.

Weakfish can be found in the same areas as the bull reds, and they also eat the same cut mullet. The key to catching both species is their excellent senses of smell, and Captain J advises dropping multiple lines straight down to draw the fish in rather than fan-casting all around the boat.

Inshore there are also a pile of small redfish to be caught, from the creeks to the jetties.  The freshwater inflow after the storm has also pushed a ton of redfish into the ocean from the inlets, and they are right in the surf.  Two days after the storm there were redfish at the tip of the north Murrells Inlet jetty, but they seem to have left (perhaps temporarily) now.

Some better trout have just started to be picked up inshore, and in the early morning casting surface lures has generated some nice blow-ups from good fish.  There have also been some better flounder caught trolling live finger mullet or mud minnows again.

In the surf there have been waves of bluefish around as well as whiting and some pompano.  There have also been some tarpon feeding on the big roe mullet, although targeting them can be unpredictable.  Off the tip of the south jetty there have also been some very large black drum caught on shrimp or crabs.

A small tarpon caught with Captain J at the jetties

A small tarpon caught with Captain J at the jetties

August 30

Inshore water temperatures inside the Murrells Inlet jetties are still around 85 degrees.  There are plenty of shrimp in the creeks and the mullet migration is well underway.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) has regular and jumbo mud minnows, live shrimp, live fiddler crabs, live finger mullet, live pinfish, salt clam, and salt sand fleas as well as a full range of frozen baits.

With the water temperatures still hot, Captain J Baisch (843-902-0356) reports that inshore fishing has been a little tough.  There are some “rat” redfish being caught inshore as well as some fish that are over the slot, and there are a few trout around, but overall inshore fishing in the Murrells Inlet area is not especially productive.  Water temperatures need to drop about 5 degrees for things to turn on and for migratory trout to start to arrive.  Further south around Georgetown the inshore fishing has been better, and on a recent trip they caught a bunch of pompano and sheepshead at the Georgetown jetties.

There are a decent number of whiting, bluefish and pompano in the surf at area beaches.

With inshore flounder fishing a little slow right now, Captain J has been heading offshore to target them.  Yesterday they caught a bunch of nice flounder 15 miles offshore and kept 8.

While there are not many smaller Spanish or king mackerel around right now, there have been some big king mackerel caught recently.  In a tournament last weekend a 42- and a 44-pounder were caught, and there have generally been some nice catches at structure about 3 miles out.  Fishing live mullet or menhaden has been the best way to catch fish at the nearshore reefs.

Kelly Baisch with a nice over-the-slot redfish caught this week

Kelly Baisch with a nice over-the-slot redfish caught this week

July 31

Inshore water temperatures inside the Murrells Inlet jetties have dropped from about 89 to 84.  Finger mullet are a good bait size, and if you know where to look there are good bait-sized shrimp.  Overall the water is pretty clear.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) has regular and jumbo mud minnows, live shrimp, live fiddler crabs, live finger mullet, live pinfish, salt clam, salt sand fleas as well as a full range of frozen baits.

It’s nice to be able to report some good news inshore, and Captain J Baisch (843-902-0356) reports that cooler inshore temperatures have really improved the bite this week.  In particular the flounder fishing has gotten much better, and this week on a trip with Murrells Inlet fishing legend Roy Meservy they had a great outing and brought home 12 keepers up to about 4 ½ pounds.  Dragging mud minnows or finger mullet is working, but the key is avoiding the warmest shallow water.  Anywhere that is cooler, be it a deeper hole, at the jetties or out at the reefs there is better flounder fishing.

The big catch this week with Captain J. Baisch

The big catch this week with Captain J. Baisch

The trout fishing has also picked up this week, and in addition to some excellent numbers they have caught some big trout up to the 5-pound range.  The best pattern has been floating live shrimp over oysters along the edge of the grass in about 5 feet of water.  The last hour or two of the incoming has been the best fishing.

While overall redfish are still slow in Murrells Inlet, to the north and south the fishing has been pretty good fishing cut mullet under docks.  Live mullet and shrimp are both working.  Captain J shares that he doesn’t mind if he doesn’t get a bite in the first few minutes, as it means that the pinfish aren’t around – often indicating trout or redfish are in the vicinity.

In the surf there has been some decent pompano fishing when the wind has laid down, and whiting and black drum have also been around.

The king mackerel bite that was so good nearshore has died this week, and it appears the fish have gone out to 80-90 feet.  There are some big Spanish mackerel around but the smaller ones have been hard to find, which is odd because there are a ton of glass minnows.

Out in 110-120 feet the bottom fishing is good for grouper, vermillion snapper, black sea bass, white grunts, triggerfish and more.

July 24

Inshore water temperatures inside the Murrells Inlet jetties are in the upper 80s to 90.  Bait-sized shrimp is abundant and finger mullet have also gotten to be the perfect size for bait.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) has regular and jumbo mud minnows, live shrimp, live fiddler crabs, live finger mullet, live pinfish, salt clam, salt sand fleas as well as a full range of frozen baits.

Captain J Baisch (843-902-0356) reports that with hot water temperatures inshore fishing can be a little tough, and the most consistent action has been nearshore at reefs like the 3 Mile where they are catching king and Spanish mackerel.  One day this week they got five big kings to go with five very large Spanish.

A good summer haul with Captain J. Baisch

A good summer haul with Captain J. Baisch

Even though it’s slow there is a little action early and late inshore, and some trout are being caught on topwater lures first thing.  A few redfish are also being caught here and there, but for the most part they are singles and locating them is unpredictable.  The flounder catch is also down, and the fish that are being caught are coming in deeper areas or at the jetties.

In the surf there is a good pompano bite when there is blue water near the beach, but when it is windy or rainy and the water gets muddy fish head offshore.  There are also some bluefish being caught in the surf as well as inshore by flounder guys.

Out in 110-120 feet the bottom fishing is good for grouper, vermillion snapper, black sea bass, white grunts, triggerfish and more.

June 27

Inshore water temperatures at the Murrells Inlet jetties are in the lower 80s.  Shrimp in the creeks are bait-sized, and finger mullet are just getting there.  Menhaden have moved into the area.  Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) has regular and jumbo mud minnows, live shrimp, live fiddler crabs, live finger mullet, live pinfish, salt clam, salt sand fleas as well as a full range of frozen baits.

Captain J Baisch (843-902-0356) reports that the most exciting development this week is that the king and Spanish mackerel have moved in really close following the schools of menhaden, and there have been some phenomenal catches off the piers (Apache Pier had 30 in one day) as well as out at the 3-Mile.  You can catch them trolling cigar minnows, smaller ballyhoo, or pulling live bait.

Just another great day for king mackerel with Captain J. Baisch

Just another great day for king mackerel with Captain J. Baisch

Flounder fishing has gotten a little spotty on the sound end of the Grand Strand, and some days they will get a bunch of keepers, and other days they will not.  It appears that the fish are schooled up pretty well, and so if you find the schools you do well – but if not you don’t.  Fish can be caught on mullet or mud minnows fished on Carolina rigs or jigheads, and for right now the fishing seems to be a little better at the jetties or in creeks closer to the ocean.  Out at the wrecks in the 30 or 40 feet of water there is good flounder fishing.

While there are still some reports of big trout being seen at the jetties, no one is catching them there on hook-and-line.  Probably the best way to catch trout is to throw topwater lures early, particularly on a morning high tide when you can cast over oyster beds.

While inshore redfish action has been a little slow, at the tips of the jetties they are catching some big reds on cut mullet as long as there is current and moving water. There are also sheepshead being caught on fiddler crabs at the jetties.

Black drum are still mainly small right now.

In the surf pompano and whiting fishing remains really good, and there are plenty of sand fleas for bait.  There are also a few tarponin the area as well as at the Georgetown jetties.

45 miles offshore there is a buffet of bottom fish, including grouper, snapper, triggerfish, porgies and more.

June 21

Inshore water temperatures at the Murrells Inlet jetties are in the lower 80s.

Flounder fishing has been strong on the sound end of the Grand Strand, and Captain J Baisch (843-902-0356) also of Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle (843-651-1915) reports that in a local flounder tournament last week the winning fish was over 6 pounds and second place was not far off.  Fish can be caught on mullet or mud minnows fished on Carolina rigs or jigheads, and for right now the fishing seems to be a little better at the jetties or in creeks closer to the ocean.

A good catch with bait from Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle

A good catch with bait from Baisch Boys Bait and Tackle

There have also been some big trout out at the jetties, although targeting them is a little hit-or-miss.  Probably the best way to catch trout is to throw topwater lures early, particularly on a morning high tide when you can cast over oyster beds.

The finger mullet have just gotten big enough to use for bait, and live mud minnows and cut mullet are also working for redfish in deeper holes inside the creeks.  While available you can’t really use shrimp because you will get pecked to death by bait stealers.

While black drum are around they are mainly small right now.

In the surf pompano and whiting are both around, and there are plenty of sand fleas for bait.  The key is to find the clearest water possible.

The king mackerel fishing continues to be phenomenal from the beach to the Gulf Stream.  The best concentrations of fish are in 35-40 feet of water, and you can catch them trolling cigar minnows, smaller ballyhoo, or pulling live bait.  There are also some cobiaaround the bait schools.

Spanish mackerel fishing is also strong, and they seem to be feeding on glass minnows but pushing schools of menhaden in order to corral the glass minnows.

The occasional early tarpon has been spotted.

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