October 14, 2011 FacebookTwitter More...

Outer Banks Angling: Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines


Highway 12 has reopened, and fall fishing is in full swing.

It’s time to get those rods and reels ready and head on down.

And for those fishing the Capitol City Four Wheelers tournament this weekend or the North Carolina Beach Buggy Association Red Drum Tournament next weekend, the reopening of the road and the start of some good fishing couldn’t have come at a better time.

There will be some shocking moments, when you are driving down the highway, especially through the tri-villages. Expect to see destruction and debris about the entire stretch.

However, remember that while there has been some serious life changing moments for a lot of Hatteras residents, most are hardened and ready for the anglers and general public to return.

I do advise being sympathetic to the local hardships and refraining from commenting about how you might have been worried about your own vacation.

Surf fishing along Hatteras and Ocracoke islands has been very productive in the recent past, with good catches of nice sized bluefish taking the overall lead.

Both Hatteras Inlet and Cape Point have produced good numbers of red drum, ranging from puppy drum to citations. A lot of these fish will be taken during the rising or the setting sun, but some can also be caught during the day or in the wee hours of the morning.

Reports of spot, flounder, pompano, sea mullet, and even a blow toad or two have been shared from pier and surf along Hatteras Island.

I highly recommend checking with one of the local tackle shops in the village in which you are staying to find out what’s currently biting, where, and how.

These shops can assist you in many ways and look forward to your business.

I’ve managed to get a little time in from the Cape Point surf and have seen a lot of fishermen giving it their best, now that the road is open to all.

It’s nice for me to see so many people doing what they love in a place that is special for so many.

The fleets out of Hatteras Inlet continue to do well with wahoo and some tuna. Dolphin fishing seems to be slowing a little, but the vibrant fish do continue to hit the docks.

Inshore boats around Hatteras have had spotty fishing, but have caught some trout, flounder ,and plenty of bluefish.

Along the beaches of Ocracoke, the surfing has mirrored that of Hatteras, with good catches of bluefish, puppy drum, and even some nice citations.

Inshore charters out of Ocracoke Inlet have done quite fair chasing large red drum.

Those wading and kayaking the Oregon Inlet area have had some good days catching speckled trout and flounder.

I’ve kayak fished there numerous times in the recent past and have done quite well.

Soft plastic baits, flies, and scented artificial swim baits have all produced fish.

The Oregon Inlet Fishing Center has reopened, and the boats are now parked in their slips again. It’s a pretty site, and I was glad to see it.

The fleets out of Oregon Inlet have been catching some yellowfin tuna, blackfin tuna, and some dolphin.

Inshore boats around Oregon Inlet have caught bluefish, speckled trout, flounder, gray trout, and even a few sheepshead.

Overall, the fishing is good. As the weather continues to cool down and the bait fish push down the shoreline, the catching can only get better. Or, at least one can hope.

So, the islands are fully accessible to visitors, though not all places may be open or able to accommodate all of your needs, as they are still recovering from Hurricane Irene.

There are roughly 5,000 year-round residents between Hatteras and Ocracoke islands, and they need your help.

If you love to fish, then these are great places to go and try your luck. You can help them considerably by spending your angling dollars in their slice of heaven.

Things have been mighty rough for the past six weeks for these people and will continue to be hard for some folks for a while to come.

But, you have the ability to make a many a person smile big, while getting a chance to chase a fish.

The weather is right for fall fishing.

What are you waiting for?

Go fishing.

(Rob Alderman is the owner of the Hatteras Island Fishing Militia website and is a kayak fishing guide. Rob has 10 years of fishing experience on the Outer Banks, and is host of the “Outer Banks Angler” television show. You can follow more of his extreme adventures or contact him at www.FishMilitia.com)

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