When February rolls around in South Carolina’s tidal marshes, the pressure is on for redfish. With groceries scarce and hundreds of anglers ready to rip some lips, they become easy targets for those using the correct tactics. But the typical low-tide approach may not always be the best opportunity during the dead of winter.
When the talk turns to snow geese, most North Carolina hunters immediately think about a long trip to the great plains of North Dakota, Nebraska, Texas, Manitoba or any of the other states and provinces along the central flyway.
It may seem like the dead of winter to most anglers as January slowly rolls over into February, but in the deep depths of most lakes and reservoirs across the Palmetto State, the first urges of spring spawning are beginning to bloom, which means crappie, which never go completely inactive in the winter, begin to stir.
Running through the Basin and Second Bay to the creeks beyond Buzzard Bay, Christian Wolfe of Seahawk Inshore Charters weaved his bay boat around submerged mud and oyster rocks and through marsh islands like there were highway markers and a dotted center-line.
The vast amount of shallow water in the Santee Cooper lakes has distinct advantages for early season largemouth bass fishing. Lake Marion and Lake Moultrie have experienced a strong revival in recent years, thanks to abundant natural vegetation and productive bass recruitment, including multiple vigorous year-classes.
I was surprised to be fishing so close to the docks and in such shallow water. It was February; big bass were supposed to be suspended in deep water, barely moving, let alone feeding. But bass pro Hank Cherry of Maiden had other ideas.
It’s a wonder that South Carolina deer hunters killed any deer to speak of during the 2015 season that ended Jan. 1. Reports of big bucks were down through the season’s first month, then the rains came, with flooding forcing the closure of a good amount of Lowcountry and Midlands acreage with the peak of October hunting and the rut right on the horizon.