Catch more redfish in the Pawleys Island surf

Bull reds show up in the surf off Pawleys Island this month, well within casting range of most fishermen armed with surf rods.

Live, cut bait fished just off the beach are productive

By November, many anglers have stored their fishing gear and won’t take it out until the spring, opting for hunting, football or cozying up by the fire drinking hot chocolate, but this is a great month for all types of fishing, including surf-fishing.

Beans Kelly of Pawleys Island said November is her favorite month to surf-fish. Although winter is just around the corner, November is usually fairly mild in South Carolina, and days on the beach can be plenty pleasant. And in the surf, big bull redfish play within easy casting distance to anglers.

“I’ve caught them anywhere from 30 inches on up to 52 inches in the surf in November, and most of the ones I catch are in very shallow water,” said Kelly.

While distance casters often have all the advantages, Kelly said that’s not the case on Pawleys Island this month.

“The majority of the fish I catch are between the breakers and the beach. You don’t have to cast a long distance to reach these fish,” she said.

Any type of live or cut bait is good for redfish, and because these fish are quite close to the beach, it doesn’t take an especially long rod, but you do want a pretty beefy one. Medium-heavy or even heavy rods are warranted, and 30-pound line is a good place to start, as long as you don’t have your drag set too tight.

Bull redfish will go on a run when they are first hooked, so it’s important to have the drag set properly, otherwise, they can pop the line quickly. Luckily, unless you’re fishing close to a jetty, they have no obstacles to tangle around. Once the fish tires, anglers can use the waves to their advantage by helping the fish “surf” onto the beach.

About Brian Cope 2800 Articles
Brian Cope is the editor of Carolina Sportsman. He has won numerous awards for his writing, photography, and videography. He is a retired Air Force combat communications technician, and has a B.A. in English Literature from the University of South Carolina. You can reach him at

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