For the past few months, the best action for saltwater anglers has been beyond the jetties and beaches, at nearshore and offshore locales. The inshore action at Murrell’s Inlet heated up just in time for Easter weekend, as impressive stringers of keeper flounder started showing up.
Jason Burton of Fly Girl Fishing Charters ended March and welcomed April with several consecutive days of double-digit catches of flounder for his clients.
“We have been killing the flounder lately. We only had one bad day on the last five trips,” said Burton (843-421-2870). “But, the bite didn’t take off until a few days ago in real shallow water.”
For Burton, finding warm water is critical for feeding activity.
“We have been doing a lot of scouting looking for creeks with the warmest water, and those creeks have the best fishing. If you can find a creek with water temperatures over 60 degrees, they will be aggressive,” he said.
But, don’t expect the bite to stay strong all day, because the water temperature has been changing abruptly as the tide changes, killing the bite that quickly.
“The falling tide is dramatically better than the rising tide because how the water temperature changes abruptly. (Saturday), we had 64-degree water on the fall, but it dropped to 57 when water started coming back in,” he said.
Since the ocean water is still cold, the rising tide has been bringing chilly water into the shallows, shutting off the bite.
Burton said the best bite has been on a falling tide from mid-day into the afternoon, especially on warm, sunny days.
“I start fishing on a mid-falling tide and fish it all the way down to a dead low,” he said.
Not only does the warm water fire up the flounder, every baitfish in the area will concentrate in the warm areas, including glass minnows and mullet minnows.
Burton recommends live mud minnows on a brightly-colored jigheads, with chartreuse and gold the best colors.