• December 2007 - Volume 2, Number 12


    This whopper buck gave a Williamsburg County hunter two tries – which was one too many.

    It was just another day in paradise for Emery Cribb, a native of Williamsburg County.

    On Oct. 6, the buck of a lifetime gave him not one, but two chances. He made the most of the second, taking a huge 8-pointer that will likely rank among the biggest taken in South Carolina this season.

    Anglers don’t have to put up their rods and reels during winter if they like hunting monster catfish.

    During recent years, Lake Norman, a member of the Catawba River chain of lakes and Badin Lake, a member of the Yadkin River chain of lakes, have emerged as the state’s premier reservoirs for trophy blue catfish.

    Mo’ better specks have become a prime target for N.C. anglers during the winter.

    Once upon a time, anglers at the southeastern North Carolina coast put up their skinny water rods when it turned cold, winterized their boats and waited for spring to feed their fishing habit once again.

    Some die-hards fished for stripers and sea bass, but few of them went out for trout.

    Winter crappie fishing can be hot as a pistol, if you learn where to find them and how to catch them.

    Deep in December — or for that matter, January or February — it may indeed be nice to remember.

    Yet there’s a lot more for a fisherman to do than look longingly back to the glorious days of springtime triumphs or dream of the coming return of warm weather.

    Now blind, this Ayden hunter has overcome tragedy and rebuilt his life with help from a friend.

    Thomas Hemby of Ayden was riding a four-wheeler through the woods and fields of a Pitt County farm June 6, 2005.

    At the time, Hemby, 32, was a successful sub-contracter who owned a local house-framing business. Life was good and profitable as the building boom was in full bloom.

    Cooler weather means excellent action on redfish in the Beaufort area.

    Everyone loves December. Family and friends gather for holiday celebrations, parties and good cheer — it’s Christmas, the most joyous season of the year.

    For those fishermen who are tuned in to the cold-weather habits of redfish, it’s also a great time to catch our No. 1 inshore game fish.

    Warm December weather results in great catches of spotted sea trout for Charleston-area fishermen.

    Global warming or Indian summer?

    It doesn’t much matter which explanation you pick, because the warm weather keeps the trout biting on into December. Whether fishing topwater or dropping a live bait under the water’s surface, chances are you’ll see plenty of spotted sea trout action if you fish diligently, keep moving and try several spots.

    Duck hunting at Cedar Island is a unique experience, but when the weather’s rough, the shooting can be fantastic.

    The wind was howling and spitting rain, which was on the edge of turning to sleet.

    While most folks with any sense snuggled their shoulders deeper into a nest of bedcovers, we jumped up at the alarm clock.

    Lottery hunts for waterfowl are special. Here are some tips to make sure your hunt is the best.

    Arriving with the same excitement as a money-laden birthday card from Grandma, the result of my 2006-07 application for a waterfowl hunt was in my mailbox.

    Only a few weeks earlier, I had poured over past Wildlife Management Area (WMA) hunt results and upcoming season dates in deciding what dates to select on my application. But because I always select “any date” on the application, I might get a date at the opposite end of the season on a WMA that was not one of my top choices — or I might get my first pick.

    These large and beautifully colored squirrels are found at longleaf pine forests in southeastern N.C., but they aren’t easy to bag.

    A thawing frost had dampened the oak leaves, quieting the footfalls of a hunter clad in blaze orange who was nearly the same color of the turning trees.

    A young hunter had his nerves calmed by a helpful neighbor, and bagged N.C.’s top youth gun whitetail last year.

    When the Wake County Wildlife Club gave out awards for North Carolina’s top white-tailed bucks of 2006 last March at the Dixie Deer Classic, one of the top eight-pointers belonged to 11-year-old Andrew Watson of Oxford.

    This Durham hunter bagged his second-straight trophy, this time with a bow.

    Northern Durham and southern Person counties have had a reputation for years as areas that produce some of North Carolina’s most-impressive trophy deer.

    The DMF’s shell exchange program increases oyster production, aids habitat and, most importantly, boosts fishing.

    It would be a good program with just one of its results, but the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries Oyster Shell Recycling Program is a triple winner.

    It provides habitat and refuges for oysters and fish, plus the oysters filter and cleanse water for a healthier environment. Making the program work is simple, too — just gather shells after the oysters have been removed and eaten, let them cure a while to remove contamination, then return the shells to coastal waters.

    When the temperature plummets and the wind’s right, nothing beats a striper blitz at the Outer Banks.

    From the top of the dunes, the sight resembled a scene from a war movie. Gannets and gulls screamed, swooped and dove into the water. The geysers that erupted indicated the kind of speed that carried the birds to the stunned baitfish.

    But almost no humans were at the beach to witness this feeding frenzy. One wondered how often such a wondrous sight occurs with no human witnesses.

    This Florence hunter will long remember the buck he shot while hunting on a whim.

    Sometimes good things happen when you least expect them.

    At least that’s what David Lowe of Florence is thinking right about now.

    Lowe wasn’t planning on going deer hunting on Sept. 25. He was busy trying to get his car dealership open, and he admitted that he’d only been deer hunting once this season before that afternoon.

    Live-bait fishing for stripers and hybrids makes Lake Hartwell a desirable December destination.

    When Chip Hamilton says, “Get ready, here he comes,” you’d better be close to your fishing rod.

    Almost every time he repeats that phrase, one or more of his rods takes a nosedive into the clear, cold waters of Lake Hartwell.

    We're entering prime time for a striper blitz at the Outer Banks.