How to catch fish in the surf

Hey everybody and thanks for stopping by, today we will be covering how to target and catch fish in the surf. I will be covering a quick three topics that if done properly will dramatically increase your ability to catch fish in the surf.

#1 Target bottom features-

Whether you target the first drop off between sandbars or a trough cutting through them putting your baits around and in the natural  features of the beach will put your bait right where the fish are. These areas provide somewhat calmer  and generally cleaner water than the surrounding sand bar area, which leads to more bait fish seeking shelter and more game fish chasing food. Understanding jetties, sand bars, natural troughs caused by rip currents, and any other bottom feature  is the main key to catching fish in the surf


#2 Experiment with your baits and lures-

Its a hard thing to switch baits when shrimp on the bottom is consistently catching fish, but switching and trying new baits can change a good day of fishing into an unforgettable one. If I can consistently catch fish using shrimp, I know I have that card in my pocket and will use the abundance of fish to try and target the larger game fish using other types of bait such as sand fleas, live bait fish, and artificial lures. Last summer there was a day I was catching whiting like it was going out of style. I decided to switch all my rods to sand fleas, over the next four hours I caught four more fish, four fish that included three large Pompano  with one being a citation and one large whiting. Changing baits decreased the number of fish but increased the quality and size of the fish I was catching.

North Carolina Citation pompano on sand fleas.
North Carolina Citation pompano on sand fleas.

#3 Don’t be afraid to throw light tackle with free lined baits

When the sun gets higher in the sky and the fishing slows down, my favorite way to target fish is with a small foam popping cork and a free lined sand flea or small bait fish. I throw the rig along the contour of the sandbar and allow the long shore current to carry it down the beach for about 20 yards. This method will blow your mind in terms of how it will catch fish when nothing else will.  Don’t forget to pop the cork with you rod tip action every 5-15 seconds depending on how active the fish are


I hope these pointers help you in your ability to catch fish along the beaches. Thank you for stopping by and as always stay safe and enjoy your outdoor adventures!

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