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Hollow-body frogs are deadly in lily pads and other surface weeds Get froggy for bass
108 Views - Posted: 9 hours ago

This time of year, a good chunk of many bodies of fish-holding water are covered in surface weeds. Lily pads and alligator grass are two of the main surface plants that can make bass fishing difficult. Any lure with a treble hook is useless in these circumstances, and even weedless-rigged soft plastic worms foul easily on the retrieve. This water is ripe for bass though, so anglers don’t want to pass up a shot at catching fish here. Thanks to a certain lure, they don’t have to.

The best lure option—and perhaps the only lure option—for this situation is the hollow-body frog. These frogs are designed to ride on top of the vegetation, and the hooks point up and back into the body, keeping them from snagging onto the weeds. It is, by fishing lure standards, a super weedless option, and almost anyone who has retrieved one across floating vegetation has stories of massive water explosions and lures getting knocked 3-feet into the air. Unfortunately, many of those same anglers complain that they’ve never been able to consistently land the bass that have been sending their frogs skyward. Three tips from a few fans of hollow-body frogs can help those anglers increase their hookup ratios when using these lures.

It's a little late for cobia, but that didn't stop this fish from biting a live bluefish Surprise cobia catch off Avalon Pier
529 Views - Posted: 13 hours ago

Jake Worthington of Camden was fishing for king mackerel on the south corner of the Avalon Pier last week when he got a big surprise. Instead of a king, Worthington caught a 60-pound cobia that fought him for almost an hour before coming close enough to the pier for another angler to gaff. 

That it was a cobia was not the biggest surprise to Worthington. “That’s my sixth cobia of the year off the Avalon Pier, so I wasn’t completely shocked, but it is a little bit late in the year for that species,” he said. He caught most of the other cobia between June and the end of July, when he said they typically move in and out of Kitty Hawk Bay. Worthington’s biggest surprise came when he actually landed the fish after getting hung in three other king anglers’ anchor lines. 

Fish all night for Blewett Falls catfish Find out the keys to catching Blewett Falls catfish
275 Views - Posted: Yesterday at 7:07 am

Anglers looking to catch good numbers of catfish are having the most luck at night in Blewett Falls Lake while using live shad for bait. Throughout most of the lake, keeping the bait on the bottom is producing the most fish, but trolling can be effective in some areas.

“We’re catching flatheads and blues, all on live shad. The water is hot, so you want to check your bait often, and make sure to keep fresh, lively shad on your hooks,” said guide Robbie Burr of Lilesville.

Crappie like this one are biting minnow-tipped jigs and Beetlespins Two fishing methods are catching Moss Lake crappie
271 Views - Posted: September 02 at 2:33 pm

Moss Lake is giving up some nice-sized crappie, and in big numbers to anglers who don’t mind starting their day early. David Darby of Light Oak said going early and fishing in 12 to 15 feet of water is the trick to catching a limit of crappie before lunchtime. 

“I lived for 40 years right down the road from Moss Lake and never fished it, but I’ve been hearing reports on the crappie fishing for several years now, and decided to finally try it last fall. It was outstanding, and I am starting a little early this year, but I’ve been catching plenty as long as I start early and can keep my baits around brush in 12 to 15 feet of water,” said Darby.

Using plastic worms to work the outer edges of submerged trees near deep water is a good tactic for catching summer largemouth bass. Summer bass may be deep, but look for shallower cover where they'll feed
324 Views - Posted: August 31 at 4:26 pm

During summer, largemouth bass on big impoundments usually hang out in deep, cool water where the oxygen level provides comfort. But another key to finding hot-weather bass is locating baitfish, usually threadfin shad, sunfish or small bluegills.

Guide Zakk Royce said big blue catfish will often be suspended just above the thermocline when a lake stratifies during the summer. Gimme those baitfish crunchin' thermocline blues
1479 Views - Posted: August 30 at 9:34 pm

Contrary to popular belief, blue catfish are not just bottom-feeders.  Once the lowest layer of water is depleted of oxygen in late summer, big blues have to change their game plan. Guide Zakk Royce of Murfreesboro consistently puts them in the boat by suspending cut bait with slip bobbers. Follow his tips to dial in on the thermocline bite. 

Plenty of slot-sized reds have been hitting live and artificial baits in the waters around Southport. Bait influx has caused late-summer inshore surge around Southport
523 Views - Posted: August 28 at 9:44 am

The calendar says it’s August, with fall a month away, but Jimmy Price at Wildlife Bait and Tackle in Southport said fish are already acting like it’s fall.

D.J. Odom landed and released this 22-inch rainbow trout Aug. 24 from the Oconaluftee River. Wild-trout action in small mountain streams approaching top-drawer
1023 Views - Posted: August 27 at 3:06 pm

Trout anglers can experience good-to-great fishing now through November in North Carolina’s high country, according to a Bryson City guide.

Live and cut shad fished behind a planer board has produced plenty of High Rock channel cats in recent weeks for guide Maynard Edwards. Add planer boards to your catfishing repetoire, High Rock guide advises
618 Views - Posted: August 26 at 3:11 pm

Lexington’s Maynard Edwards, a veteran High Rock Lake guide, is always tinkering with new ideas to catch fish. This month, he came up with a doozy. I know a lot of people have started using planer boards to catch striped bass, but I think hardly anyone’s used planer boards for catfish — until now,” he said.

Guide Mitchell Blake has a routine he practices when he targets big drum in the Pamlico Sound or coastal North Carolina rivers. Four steps to catch more big late-summer, spawning reds
2750 Views - Posted: August 26 at 8:10 am

Few fisheries get an angler’s blood pumping like spawning red drum in the Pamlico Sound and its tributaries. While many of these big fish are already being hoisted for glory shots, Capt. Mitchell Blake of Chocowinity’s Fish IBX Charters, said the best is yet to come. Find out what to look for and how to close the deal by following his tips.

The N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission had a vote taken out of its hands on southern flounder management by state legislators and the secretary of the N.C. Department of Environmental and Natural Resources last week. Legislators, DENR chief sidetrack Marine Fisheries Commission
3579 Views - Posted: August 25 at 4:30 pm

Donald R. van der Vaart, secretary of the N.C. Department of Environmental and Natural Resources, caved in to the demands of a coalition of 13 legislators and scuttled a scheduled vote on needed reform in North Carolina’s flounder fishery last week when he directed the N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission to postpone the vote.

Zakk Royce of Murfreesboro caught this 81-pound blue catfish last Friday at Lake Gaston. Lake Gaston spits out another huge blue catfish
15618 Views - Posted: August 25 at 11:21 am

Refusing to be ignored as one of North Carolina's premier trophy catfish destinations, Lake Gaston unveiled another monster last Friday.  Shortly after breaking off one huge fish, Zakk Royce of Murfreesboro rallied his efforts to overpower a massive 81-pound blue cat that he released.