December brings out a great trout, redfish bite in McClellanville waters

Deeper holes around oyster shell banks produce plenty of December speckled trout in the waters around McClellanville, S.C. (Picture by Unashamed Adventures)

Specks, reds are feeding heavily this month

Anglers looking for a hot bite in December can find all they want in the waters around McClellanville, S.C. Redfish and speckled trout are hungry this month, and guide Stephen Flook of Unashamed Adventures said this is one of his favorite months to fish here.

“The redfish and specks are biting artificial lures this month like no other,” said Flook (864-430-88300). “It’s one of the easiest times to catch them without using natural baits. And catching them this way is a lot like fishing for largemouth bass. It makes for a fun time on the water.”

Flook’s top choice for lures in December is a paddletail swimbait on a jighead.

“I use the Z-Man DieZel MinnowZ in the beer run color, mainly on a 3/8-ounce jighead,” he said. “I’ll catch both species on this lure, and redfish and sea trout are good, staple fish in this area throughout December and into January.”

If specifically targeting specks, Flook will cast to slightly deeper holes in areas around oyster shell banks. He will scale down on his jighead size if conditions warrant. For water in the 5- to 6-foot range, he’ll use a 1/4-ounce jighead. In water deeper, he’ll go to the 3/8-ounce size.

Look for creek mouths on outgoing tides for trout

“For the trout, I like the incoming tide a little better,” he said. “And I look for an oyster bar on a point and put my lure in deeper pockets right behind the oyster bar. The trout will sit in those holes. It may not be a huge depth change, but what I’ve found is the trout sit in those holes. I’ll cast my lure upcurrent, let it sink, then work it through the hole.”

On outgoing tides, Flook targets specks around creek mouths, casting into those mouths and working his lure as it runs out with the current.

“For redfish, I like to find shallow flats. This is where redfish love to hang out this time of year to keep safe from the dolphins. I find these flats by going out at dead-low tide and looking for the oyster bars that are totally exposed at low tide. As the tide comes in, the redfish will move up on those shallow flats,” he said.

Other reasons Flook likes fishing this time of year include fewer boats are on the water, and the marsh’s pretty brown color, which offers a change of scenery. Also, the weather is rarely uncomfortably cold, and fewer bugs are around.

“It’s a great month for fishing here for a number of reasons. But mainly, it’s just a much more-consistent bite on artificial lures than any other time,” he said.

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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