Not many fishermen who gig flounder in North Carolina waters think about the vast expanses of the Pamlico Sound when it comes to planning a summer trip — especially not the open waters on the west side of the Outer Banks.
But Jake Dempsey of Team Dempsey Guide Service in Hatteras spends quite a few summer nights targeting flounder for gigging parties in places not many giggers would imagine.
“We gig all in open water, on sandbars from the one at the end of Rollison’s Channel right out of Oden’s Dock all the way down to the Legged Lump where we duck hunt,” he said. “We’re gigging water that’s from ankle to knee deep, all the way to thigh deep.
“The tide really doesn’t matter, and some times, the high tide is better, because it brings in that clear ocean water into the sound and helps the clarity.”
Dempsey (252-216-5584) said his giggers will gig from bow of his boat, which has lights affixed to the hull. He’ll be out of the boat, to the side, where he can offer advice.
“Outside the boat, I can keep us over good bottom, and if we see a fish that’s a borderline keeper, it’s a no-go, and I can tell them,” he said. “If it’s an 18- or 19-inch fish, I’ll tell them to get him.”