Don Mounce of Charleston set a pier record for spotted sea trout at the Mount Pleasant Pier with a 5 ½-pound fish he caught on April 18.
Mounce caught the big trout on a 3-inch, pink Vudu shrimp while using a medium-light spinning outfit with 10-pound braided line and a 12-pound fluorocarbon leader.
Fishing an hour before the tide changed and about two-thirds of the way to the end of the pier, Mounce cast the lure down the side and underneath the pier. The 23 ½-inch trout struck as soon as the lure hit the water.
It took Mounce about five minutes to land the fish because he had to make sure that he did not get tangled on hang ups under and around the pier.
Ounce, who is retired from the military, started fishing the Mount Pleasant Pier about a year ago. He typically fishes about five days a week for trout, sheep head and flounder this time of year.
“I was just in the right place at the right time with the right lure,” Ounce said of his big fish.
Chris Pounder, manager of the Mount Pleasant Pier, said the trout fishing has just started to pick up, and as the water continues to warm, it should get even better.
“The water temperature is 69 degrees,” Pounder said, “but as the water climbs into the 70s, the flounder will start to show up. The best time to catch trout is two hours on either side of the low tide.
“Right now, the red drum are intermittent, but some can be caught on cut bait or mud minnows along the grass line,” said Pounder, who believes the most-exciting news for pier fishermen is that they are seeing signs of cobia, and this could be the first year to catch a keeper.