Morning surface water temperatures around Beaufort are about 75 degrees and clarity varies.  

It’s a substantially better cobia bite this year than last, and Captain Tuck Scott with Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) reports that even with relatively tough conditions for sight-fishing they have already seen way more fish than last year. They have had opportunities to cast at a ton of fish and caught a decent percentage of those.  When they aren’t casting a fly then a big walk-the-dog style bait like a Spook or Top Dog is often most effective, although a lot of people opt for big bucktails.   The key to all these is to rip it past the fish so he doesn’t have time to think and just reacts.  If you opt to sight-cast natural baits then an eel is usually impossible to beat.  

To read about anchored fishing for cobia check out the Hilton Head report.   

While the cobia bite has been good, the redfish action has been unusually tough.  Fish are unusually finicky for the beginning of the summer, and some of the best bait fishermen in the area have had a lot of trouble hooking up.  

Overall, Tuck reports that the best time to fish seems to be at high tide as tailing activity has been good.  Outside of that, the second-best time to fish has been on the high outgoing tide when water first starts to come out of the grass.  Since the fish are feeding so heavily on fiddler crabs at high water up in the grass that makes sense.   

While his boat has picked up a random trout here-or-there when they cast out the occasional mud minnow, the sheepshead fishing has been so good this week that Captain Patrick Kelly with Boogieman Fishing Charters (843-962-3503) reports they really haven’t focused on anything else.  It seems that about every good dock with 5-6 feed of water holds sheepshead on lower stages of the tide, but when the tide starts to rise they are switching over to downed trees in the creeks and keeping the party going.  Between a half and a third of the fish are keepers right now, and fiddler crabs fished vertically right against the structure are working very well.    

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