Backwater fishing the Cape Fear River is what I do best. I have been running south from Carolina Beach now for many years on my Pathfinder Bay boat. This boat is made to cut through and run in the choppy river. The Buzzard Bay area is a shallow water flats area that is extremely difficult to run in and out of unless you pay close attention to the tides. Most of my customers are amazed when we enter the entrance to the bay leaving the river, the scenery completely changes as you enter the bays marsh grass, and a maze of turns and channels.
Cape Fear backwater fishing takes experience in order to be successful, and there are days when even I can not seem to find the redfish. I am constantly learning how to fish in this area, finding spots for high and low water days. One thing I am seeing more is boat positioning is really important.
Looking for bait running along the banks is always a good indicator of where fish may be. When fishing a high tide fish can often be holding a yard into the grass line, cast your bait into the grass. When the tide is low look for water that is still moving this is where you will find the fish. Try to position your boat where you will be at least one cast distance from your target. Sandbars and oyster beds are some of my favorite spots to anchor off from they are where fish feed and hold close to.
Bait is an important factor in catching fish, what works best one day may not work every day, so I try to mix the baits up. Shrimp cut big enough to use a 1/0 circle hook, cut bait such as a croaker or bluefish, live bait such as finger mullet, menhaden. Carolina rig is what I use on all my charters. Spread your baits out along the area you are fishing, one you will cover more water, secondly when you hook a fish you will have time to move the other line out of the way of the running fish you have on.
Capt.Mike Dennis – Cape Fear Guide – 910-619-0928