First week of April a blowout! – Hook, Line & Sinker

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Unfortunately, as the title states, fishing for the first week of April has been rather windy. It has hampered anglers from heading offshore and even those anglers who want to remain inshore.
With that said, the water temperatures continue to rise with our warm and sunny days, and they are now reading in the lower sixties, a good sign for things to come.
The forecast for the upcoming week is showing a lot more wind and even a slight cool down. Hopefully after this next round of cold fronts and storms, things can settle down and fishermen can get back to business.
Offshore, if the boats can get out, the wahoo fishing has been very good for a majority of the offshore fleet. Blackfin and even some yellowfin tuna have been reported, but until conditions lay down, which looks to be next week at the earliest, anglers can only prepare their gear and wait for that window of opportunity to arrive.
Closer to the beach, king mackerel have been found as close as 25 miles, but the better fishing has been upwards of 30 miles out. The bottom fishing in that water depth has also been good.
Inshore and surf anglers are reporting a good quantity of virginia mullet and blowfish coming from the lower Cape Fear River and along the surf areas of Carolina, Wrightsville and Surf City beaches.
If fishing the river, boaters must use extreme caution, as the winds hampering the offshore fleet can also wreak havoc in the river and make you feel like you are offshore fishing. Conditions can turn in an instant, and sometimes the fish just aren’t worth the risk.
Some red and black drum have been caught around the area docks and creek mouths, with both natural and artificial baits. Cut shrimp, the fresher the better, works really well on the black drum, while cut bait and artificial work better on the reds.
Some speckled trout have also been reported coming from local waters with better trout fishing in the river.
As the days continue and conditions improve, expect the bluefish to arrive in large numbers at any time. The best bets for them will be around the inlets, especially the jetties, and can be caught by trolling Clark Spoons or fishing from the bank with cut bait or spoons. Pier anglers should also start seeing them in good numbers on Gotcha Plugs in the not too distant future.
Some false albacore have been reported in the 10-12 mile range and as they slowly get closer to shore, the atlantic bonito shouldn’t be too far behind. This arrival could take place any day once anglers can safely get out to the fishing grounds.
To round off the month of April, the arrival of some very large spanish mackerel is also on the calendar. While they are normally found to our south around Fort Fisher, there’s no telling when or where they’ll appear. Anglers will have to be out there in search of them in order to know.

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