S.C.’s mid-April saltwater fishing report

fishing report
Big black drum are part of South Carolina's mid-April saltwater fishing report. (photo courtesy of Shoal Bandit Charters)

The Palmetto State’s fishing report keeps getting better

The fishing report along South Carolina’s coastline continues to be good and getting better as we move into the middle of April. Anglers are catching a number of different species on just as many types of bait and lures. Don’t sit home and wait to hear that the hottest bite of the year is on, because it’s bound to happen any day now.

Capt. Patrick Kelly of Capt. Smiley Fishing Charters in Little River is putting his anglers on fish all throughout the waters that border the NC/SC state line. They’ve caught speckled trout and redfish on one day, then turned around to catch a mix of black drum, redfish, and speckled trout the next.

Kelly (843-361-7445) said live shrimp under a slip float drifted along ledges and grass lines is the trick to catching the trout and redfish. They’re doing the same at the jetties with the same rigs. When they’re targeting docks and other structure, that’s when the black drum join in on the mix. He said a few flounder are beginning to bite, but he expects their numbers to pick up in the coming weeks.

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Redfish are among numerous species biting along SC’s coastline. (photo courtesy of Capt. Smiley’s Fishing Charters)

Capt. Brandon Huskins of Any Tide Fishing Charters in N. Myrtle Beach has caught some quality-sized speckled trout this spring. And when fishing the nearshore areas, he tripled up on some trophy-sized grey trout recently. The redfish are biting strong inshore. Huskins (843-877-7068) said some recent windy mornings have been tough on anglers, but it hasn’t stopped the fish from biting.

fishing report
Weakfish a/k/a gray trout, are also biting along the Palmetto State’s coast. (photo courtesy of Any Tide Charters)

It’s a mixed bag all over the SC coastline

In the Murrells Inlet area, Capt. Justin Witten of Ambush Sport Fishing said everything is biting. He’s spent some days putting his anglers on big numbers of redfish and speckled trout inshore, and he’s trolled with good luck off the beaches for Spanish mackerel. They’ve also been catching stud weakfish at the reef, along with some flounder both inshore and at the reef. An occasional black drum and sheepshead have kept his anglers guessing as to what’s biting next.

Speckled trout are making a strong showing in the Murrells Inlet area. (photo courtesy of Ambush Sport Fishing Charters)

Witten (843-685-9910) expects the fishing to get even better in the next few weeks.

A little further down the coast, Capt. Chuck Griffin of Aqua Adventures Sportfishing Charters in the Isle of Palms area has had luck at the nearshore reefs and in the creeks. His anglers have been catching some nice sheepshead at the reefs. Redfish have been the main species biting inshore for Griffin (843-860-1664).

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Sheepshead are biting inshore and along the nearshore reefs. (photo courtesy of Aqua Adventures)

The fishing report should continue to get even better

The reefs have also been good to Capt. John Koonce of Shoal Bandit Charters in the Charleston area. One of his clients caught a gigantic black drum recently, and sheepshead have also made big showings for his clients. Inshore, Koonce (843-425-2939) is putting his anglers on plenty of redfish.

fishing report
Big black drum are part of South Carolina’s mid-April saltwater fishing report. (photo courtesy of Shoal Bandit Charters)

The warming trend has really turned the inshore bite on in the Hilton Head area. Capt. Brian Vaughn with Off the Hook Fishing Charters said he’s clients have been catching the super inshore slam of redfish, flounder, speckled trout, and black drum lately. It’s not just a slam here and there either, but a solid pattern of catching them consistently.

fishing report
Flounder are a key ingredient in the inshore super slam that anglers have been consistently catching in the Hilton Head area. (photo courtesy of Off the Hook Charters)

Vaughn (843-298-4376) said the big bull reds are also biting for customers. Some of his anglers are also catching a few sheepshead here and there.

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About Brian Cope 1998 Articles
Brian Cope is the editor of CarolinaSportsman.com. 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 brianc@sportsmannetwork.com.

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