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Take advantage of kayak fishing

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Mike Sweeney sports fishing

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By Mike Sweeney
Columnist

Friday, October 27, 2017

This time of year the fishing can be as about as exciting as it can get with top water bass fishing at its peak and the big reds are on fire at the beach.

Lets not leave out the offshore guys with tuna, sailfish and wahoo hitting the docks every day they can get out. What I love the most about fall fishing is my kayak because you can do all of this if you have the drive and energy to do so even offshore.

Lets start local with largemouth because we have plenty of creeks and main rivers that have been smoking hot with bass fishing and now that the water is beginning to cool it is even hotter with top water hits that will make your heart race.

Pop-Rs, buzz baits, Whopper Ploppers and flukes are all good baits on kayaks.

Just move down the creeks or river bank and work the wood and other shallow structure till you get your first strike then slow down and work it only the way a quiet kayak can do.

In the sound right now you can take your yak and go to Hatteras with good success with live bait like fresh mullet or artificial bait like Gulp and spoons and fish the sand flats for bull reds.

Look for surface tension or diving birds and sneak up to the fish before casting.

I like to use the winds and tide to push the yak up to the fish and only paddle when needed.

The stripers are beginning to show around the bridges like Mann’s Harbor in the sound also and the yaks can get in close and work the pilings with minimal disturbance to the fish.

I know guys who troll with broken rods and get right next to the pilings with Rattle Traps on the Wright Memorial Bridge.

They drag the rod tips on the concrete and only have a few yards of line in the water but they catch stripers almost every time.

Offshore you take the yaks and strap them down on the boat then drop them in when you get to the fish.

The yak will act as a floating structure and the fish will congregate to the boat.

You haven’t lived till you catch a tuna or a big mahi off a kayak.

The fish will pull you like a freight train till you finally wear it out then just hand it off to the mother ship.

All of these adventure are waiting for you right here in our own back yard on a simple kayak so lets get out there and start the adventure.

WHAT’S BITING, WHERE...

The offshore fleet was blown out a couple of days but they did manage some decent fishing in between the wind with good blackfin, some yellowfin and wahoo mixed into the catch.

Throw in a couple of mahi and a lingering billfish here and there and you have a good day out in the gulf stream.

On the piers and beaches we have had a pretty good week on the speckled trout and blues but the big drum are slow right now.

We have scattered puppy drum here and there but the best bet for a big red is around Hatteras inlet and Ocracoke island.

The sound is picking up a little striper action on some of the bridges but the thing you want to look for is birds working the surface for bait.

This will pinpoint the fish for you so sneak up to the birds and work the outside edges for the biggest fish.

Never just drive the boat into the ball of bait because it will scatter the fish and you will be lucky to catch one fish but the edges almost always carry the biggest fish.

Here locally we have had some great largemouth fishing with a top water bite that has everyone talking.

The bass fishing has really come along way in the past few years with some good quality fish coming to the scales in the local tournaments.

We had a catfish tournament out on the Chowan this past weekend and had some monsters come in for the weigh in.

Steve Grzanka from Edenton caught a beast of a fish at 49 plus pounds so the cats are still on.

Fresh cut bait seems to be working better than eel but I always fish with both just in case.

David Buchanan from Edenton has found some stripers in the Chowan River this past week.

It is one of the first positive rockfish reports I have gotten so far but if you know David and his dad Buck you know they are some of the best at the game.

David tells me that he caught the rocks while chasing bait and casting to them. His daughter Jessica is no slouch with a rod in her hand either so it looks like the fishing gene is in three generations of Buchanan’s.

If you get out send me a report and some bragging pictures to fishingwithmike921@yahoo.com or hit me up on Facebook at Fishing with Mike and I will do my best to get the word out.

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