Wrightsville Beach Drummin’

Capt. Jot Owens said December is a great month for finding lots of redfish of all sizes.

Big schools of red drum are hungry and feeding

The cooling temperatures that hit the Wrightsville Beach, NC area this month are a catalyst for getting red drum bunched up in schools. And Capt. Jot Owens of Jot It Down Charters (910-233-4139) said they’ll eat a variety of lures.

“You can find these fish in schools of anywhere from a dozen to 200 fish, especially if water temperatures are around 50 degrees,” he said.

During the first week or 10 days of a typical November, Owens finds plenty of red drum in shallow water along grass lines.

“The higher tides push the drum against that grass, and the fish can be a little bit spooky here,” he said.

This approach calls for casting Gulp! soft plastics in the 3-inch size.

“I put those on 1/16-ounce swimbait jigs, and cast them as tight to the grass as I can get. You don’t want to use any more weight than that. And you need to keep your distance because the water is usually clear this month,” he said.

Owens suggests letting your lure slowly sink, then either hop it along or swim it slowly.

Go bigger, later

Later in the month, once the water has cooled more, Owens said it’s time to go bigger.

“Once we get some cold weather, the redfish will move to the mouths of inlets. They’re looking for bigger baits here, so it’s time to use bigger lures. I like the 5- and 6-inch Gulp! Shad on jigheads from 3/8- to 3/4-ounce. Sometimes I’ll skip the jighead and use 3/0 or 4/0 hooks,” he said.

Fishing during any tide change yields the best results, and Owens said the key is to look for fish along the edges of current.

“It’s easier to see this when the tide is moving in one direction or the other. You’ll see where the current is meeting slack water. That edge where the two meet is the hot zone,” he said.

Owens uses a variety of lure colors, and said colors with at least a touch of neon or chartreuse are always likely candidates.

When it comes to gear, Owens prefers Penn spinning reels in 2500 to 3500 sizes, spooled with 15-pound SpiderWire and 12-pound fluorocarbon leaders. ■

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 brianc@sportsmannetwork.com.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply