If there is ever a time for anglers to visit the southern end of the Grand Strand, this is it. From Murrells Inlet's jetty rocks to the marshes behind Garden City Beach, the annual run of speckled trout has arrived, and in a big way.

Recent cold fronts have driven water temperatures into the lower 60s, creating an ideal environment, with abundant baitfish and shrimp left inside, and hungry trout all around.

Capt. Englis Glover of Tee to Sea Fishing said the specks are thick just about every place imaginable, with fishermen of every experience level reporting double-digit catches on every trip.

"The specks are everywhere," said Glover ( 843-655-5459). "Not only are they here, they are big!"

 

Just a few days ago, Glover landed a 7.8-pound gator trout from along the jetties. While anglers shouldn't expect to catch too many of that size, above average specks between two and four pounds are plentiful.

 

Live shrimp floated under a popping cork are producing the best catches, but a variety of soft-plastic artificial aren't disappointing either. Grubs fished on quarter-ounce jigheads, topwater baits, MirrOlures and D.O.A. shrimp are producing regular limits either slow-trolling or casting.

 

When not floating live shrimp alongside the jetty rocks, Glover trolls grubs and MirrOlures along the grass lines and in the creek channels. He prefers moving water – rising or falling.

 

"The bite is always better on moving water, but right now, slack water is producing plenty of bites too," he says. "The fishing is really good right now. The trout are hungry and very aggressive."

 

Murrell's Inlet's exceptional bite is expected to continue as long as water temperatures remain stable in the upper 50s or lower 60s.

 

The flood of trophy trout into the Murrell's Inlet area is working towards a record-breaking year for Glover's Hooks for Hearts Speckled Trout Tournament on Nov. 17.

 

Beginning in 2006, Englis and Kim Glover started the tournament to raise money for the American Heart Association and the Winston Perry Reef Foundation. It's always scheduled for the weekend before Thanksgiving.