Reel in the big fish with one of our handpicked fishing reels. Shop by brand or reel type.

Shop our collection of fishing rods to find the one that best matches your needs.

AHQ INSIDER Beaufort (SC) Spring 2018 Fishing Report – Updated March 2

  • by Jay

The newest Beaufort fishing report can be found at: http://www.anglersheadquarters.com/ahq-insider-beaufort-sc-spring-2018-fishing-report/

March 2

Inshore water temperatures in the Beaufort remain around 60 degrees.  Water clarity is decreasing, indicating that algae is starting to bloom.

March Madness is fully in swing with the Beaufort-area redfish, by which Captain Tuck Scott of Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) means that some days they will eat extremely well – and other days they seem to have lockjaw.  Overall the pattern is relatively unchanged from last week, but throughout this month expect more extreme highs and lows.

Making fishing even more challenging this week there has been a lot of wind, but they have still managed to get out and have some good days.  On all stages of the tide sight-fishing with hard plastic twitch baits, gold spoons, swimbaits and mud minnows is working when fish are feeding, and when you have to fish blind scented soft plastics like Gulp! or mud minnows are the best bet.

A nice Beaufort redfish caught off Captain Tuck Scott's boat
A nice Beaufort redfish caught off Captain Tuck Scott’s boat

Anglers are reminded that, as a precautionary measure, the SCDNR is asking anglers to practice catch and release of all spotted seatrout through the end of September.  To read the full news release click here.

February 23

Inshore water temperatures in the Beaufort area are around 60-61 degrees.  Water clarity is still pretty good.

The Beaufort redfishbite is definitely improving, but Captain Tuck Scott of Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) reports that there are still better and worse days.  Fish are still pretty schooled up and sight-fishing is the best way to catch them, with a variety of baits working.  Shallow suspended twitch baits, gold spoons, swimbaits, and mud minnows are all working on conventional tackle, and on the fly fairly simple patterns in natural colors are working best.

Outside of the low tide period, you may be able to find fish sunning along the grass lines on warm, afternoon higher tides although there will be less of that as the water warms.  When fish are deeper/ harder to spot then casting with Gulp! or paddletail-type grubs on a ¼ ounce jighead will work.

Caught this week with Captain Tuck Scott
Caught this week with Captain Tuck Scott

Tuck continues to hear of a few trout being caught.  Anglers are reminded that, as a precautionary measure, the SCDNR is asking anglers to practice catch and release of all spotted seatrout through the end of September.  To read the full news release click here.

February 16

Inshore water temperatures in the Beaufort area are around 56-57 degrees.  The water is clear but no longer gin clear because of all the rain in the area.

After a week away fishing for bonefish in the Bahamas, Captain Tuck Scott of Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) is back chasing the Beaufort redfish.  Some days they are cooperative, like yesterday, but other days – like earlier in the week – getting bites is more challenging.  Generally when you can get several days of stable, warm weather the bite is good, but both sides of a cold front it is tougher.  This bodes very well for the next couple of weeks.

Overall fish remain very schooled up, and it’s mainly still a sight-fishing bite.  Fishing the dropping tide around oyster bars has been the best way to convince them to eat, and on dead low tide they can get lockjaw.  On higher stages of the tide it’s worth running the grass lines and looking for their coppery backs – a lot of times they will be found just sunning on the top of the water.

On the fly realistic looking flies and smaller shrimp patterns in light colors are working well, and on conventional tackle lighter-colored grubs have also been good.

A beautiful flats red caught yesterday on Tuck Scott's boat
A beautiful flats red caught this week on Captain Tuck Scott’s boat

Tuck has heard of a very few trout caught but nothing to speak of.  Anglers are reminded that, as a precautionary measure, the SCDNR is asking anglers to practice catch and release of all spotted seatrout through the end of September.  To read the full news release click here.

February 1

Inshore water temperatures in the Beaufort area are around 48 degrees, and the water remains very clear.

The pattern for redfishin the Beaufort area remains pretty similar, but Captain Tuck Scott of Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) reports that tidal and temperature variances can make a big difference.  Generally fish remain very schooled up on the flats, but during a cold front and even the day before they can be hard to find when the pressure is changing.  Additionally, during periods of extreme tides they stay nearer to deep water.  Fish are also on the move because of voracious dolphins.

Generally, sight-casting with bright or natural colored lures and flies is the best pattern.

A nice flats red caught on Captain Tuck Scott's boat
A nice flats red caught on Captain Tuck Scott’s boat

Before the extreme cold Tuck was seeing some trout on the flats, but not since then.  Anglers are reminded that, as a precautionary measure, the SCDNR is asking anglers to practice catch and release of all spotted seatrout through the end of September.  To read the full news release click here.

January 18

Inshore water temperatures in the Beaufort area are around 44 degrees, and the water is very clear.

Redfishin the Beaufort area are in a typical winter pattern, and Captain Tuck Scott of Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) reports that the best time to catch the tightly schooled fish is at low tide.  Sight casting is the name of the game, and ¼ or 1/8 ounce jigheads with your favorite grub body will catch fish.  Light colors such as white, tan, or even bright colors such as pink or chartreuse will work, but in the gin clear water you don’t need the extra silhouette of dark colors.

On high tide it may be possible to find some fish around oyster beds, and they generally don’t go too far from their low tide locations.  The upside is that they probably won’t be as spooky, but they are much harder to locate.

The Beaufort trout population was walloped by the cold weather, and Tuck is pretty sure that most of the trout are dead as it just stayed too cold for too long.  Beaufort has such a strong population of dolphins that the fish generally don’t float up to the surface – when they slow down the dolphin gorge on them.  This is a natural cycle and after a couple of mild winters the population should rebound, but in the meantime anglers should do everything they can to keep the remaining trout alive so they can breed.  As a precautionary measure, the SCDNR is asking anglers to practice catch and release of all spotted seatrout through the end of September.  To read the full news release click here.

December 19

Inshore water temperatures in the Beaufort area are around 50 degrees, and the water has gotten super clear.

The weather has turned around in the Beaufort area, and as a result Captain Tuck Scott of Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) reports that fishing conditions have been excellent.  Redfishare mostly grouped up in big schools on the flats, and at low tide sight-fishing has been excellent in the super clear water around oyster bars.  Fish have been very willing to take both flies and conventional artificial lures.

A nice low tide red caught this week on Captain Tuck Scott's boat
A nice low tide red caught this week on Captain Tuck Scott’s boat

Surprisingly, trout have also been up on the flats in very shallow water.  They have been eating small shrimp fly patterns extremely well.

The last sight many a shrimp has seen
The last sight many a shrimp has seen

December 15

Inshore water temperatures in the Beaufort area are around 54 degrees, and conditions are fairly clear.

Weather has been a limiting factor for Captain Tuck Scott of Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) recently, but now that we seem to be getting out of a rainy spell the troutbite is starting to pick up again.  Throwing DOA Shrimp and grubs on ¼ ounce jigheads in 3-4 feet of water on moving tides has been working pretty well, with the outgoing tide best.

Redfishare starting to get more schooled up, and on lower stages of the tide you can find them by hunting around shallow oyster bars in the clear water.  On any of the moving tides you want to look around shell points when there is some water in the grass, and they will take mud minnows or live shrimp under a popping cork.  Fishing can be tougher on higher tides, but you can look for fishing that are cruising or floating.  They may also be around bigger points where grass is sticking out a bit further.

Another good option in the winter months is to prospect along banks with white shell.  These areas offer the double benefit of offering a good background to see fish as well as reflecting a lot of heat into the water that attracts reds.

December 1

Inshore water temperatures in the Beaufort area are around 59 degrees, and conditions are very clear.

With fish happy and hungry and the water clear, it is pretty much the peak time of the year to fish for redfish in the Beaufort area.  Captain Tuck Scott of Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) reports that on the next cycle of tailing tides there may be one last group of tailing fish for the year, but on low tide they are doing some great sight-fishing on the fly for reds.

On the dropping tide fishing around shell bar points with artificial lures including DOA shrimp and grubs or scented soft plastics on a ¼ ounce jighead are working, and fish are pretty shallow.  When the water is up fish are generally spreading out in the grass and dispersing, and it is generally easier to target them around mounds, shell bars and points on lower tides.

A beautiful fall redfish caught on Captain Tuck Scott's boat
A beautiful fall redfish caught on Captain Tuck Scott’s boat

The troutbite continues to be pretty phenomenal, although fish are a bit deeper with cooling water.  Points in 3 feet of water have been good, but just working the banks a bit off the grass at that depth has also been productive on most any moving tide.  The outgoing has been a bit better than the incoming.  DOA shrimp under a popping cork, and popping it a lot, has been productive, as has been searching with live shrimp.  Once you find fish then you can switch back to artificials so you don’t run through a lot of expensive bait.

Search