December is the giving month for sportsmen

Johnnie Spivey caught this 51-inch drum in Beaufort County, NC on Oct. 31.

Sportsmen get the best of both worlds from the giving month

December marks the end of deer season in the Carolinas, but it’s one of the most giving months for sportsmen. Although it’s typically thought of as a winter month, the fall doesn’t officially end until Dec. 21, the first day of winter.

And throughout the Carolinas, December usually has plenty of fairly mild weather. Cool mornings, and slightly less cool afternoon days are sometimes interrupted by Indian summer days, when we’re all glad we haven’t packed our shorts away.

Youth hunter Leddy Ray Burgin shot her first bear during a family hunting trip in Avery County on Oct. 17.

For hunters, December gives us every game animal that’s not a turkey at some point, at least in some section of the two states. And the fishing is excellent for numerous species, or at least it can be when conditions are right – and every year in December, conditions are right for at least a small string of days.

For freshwater anglers, bass, crappie, stripers and catfish bite well throughout this month. Bream too, if you know how to find them in deep holes. For saltwater anglers, speckled trout can be fantastic, redfish action stays steady, and even sheepshead will keep you plenty busy when you find them.

One of my favorite December memories is from a different sort of “cast and blast,” that for Curtis Begley and me involved catching bass in a pond from a johnboat, and disembarking from the craft occassionaly with a .22 to plink squirrels from trees around the pond. I don’t even remember whether the temperature was hot or cold that day, but I remember enjoying the outdoors, gladly taking what December was giving us.

Don’t pack away your outdoor gear this month. It’s the giving month. It’s also the last month before full-blown winter. Just watch the weather and take whatever outdoor adventures it offers.

About Brian Cope 2745 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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