Coastal Fishing Reports

Coastal Fishing Report, June 2 Update:

Persistent northeast winds have made fishing difficult for just about everyone along the coastal areas, ranging from those surf fishing to those trying to take a boat through an inlet. Dave Moore checked in to let us know that the striper run on the beach seems to be a done deal, and now sharks have moved in. One evening he had 15 sandbar sharks in a two-hour timespan, hitting cut kingfish baits. Around dusk the sand tigers arrived and took over with the biggest being just over seven feet. Coastal Correspondent John Unkart noted a similar transition while on Assateague, catching a nice flounder and some kingfish. Better numbers of kingfish (roundhead) are being reported from farther south, in Virginia Beach. Unkart also mentioned that conditions have been very tough at times and it took a whopping 12-ounces of lead to hold bottom when some very breezy weather moved through.

sea bass anglers on the mornign star
Anglers aboard the Morning Star celebrate a nice catch, and the fact that they managed to sneak out through the inlet during a very windy week.

At the nearshore wrecks and reefs, Captain Monty of the Morning Star was able to sneak a sea bass trip in last week despite the wind. He reported having to move around a lot to find fish due to sloppy sea conditions. It took nine different locations before he threw the towel in, but all his anglers were able to box some fish. The most keeper sized fish by one angler on the trip was eight. We checked in with the OC Fishing Center who told us that the tuna fishing out at the canyons has been good when boats have been able to make the run offshore. Charter boat Primary Search Sportfishing headed out this week to the Baltimore Canyon and found some stud bigeye tuna. Their boat went seven for nine on the bigeyes and returned home before lunch. Another boat, the Fish ON, returned from a trip with 18 yellowfin tuna. Deep dropping for tilefish is still a good option and some mahi-mahi are around for the taking too.

At the Ocean City Inlet, anglers are catching a mix of rockfish and bluefish near the jetty rocks, bulkheads, and bridge pilings. Some of the top lures to throw right now are gotcha plugs and jigheads paired with soft plastics. Most of the rockfish are below the 28 – 31-inch slot limit but there have been a few slot sized fish caught recently. At the south jetty, there have been a few 40-plus inch rockfish and some big bluefish moving through. Fish In OC reported one angler catching a 42-inch rock on a crankbait, another boat catching a 43-inch rockfish, and an 11-pound bluefish all caught this week. Flounder are also a good option when the wind isn’t blowing. Clean water has been the key to catching fish. A few keepers have been caught in the Thoroughfare and East Channel this week. If you want to get on more steady flounder action, however, heading south to one of the Virginia inlets will be your best bet. A reader checked in from Quimby with four keeper flatties in the boat this week; Sea Hawk reports that finding clean water at the beginning of the outgoing has been key.

February 3, 2023
Coastal Mid-Atlantic Fishing Report, February 24 Update: Winter fishing opportunities are limited along the coast and many anglers are waiting for the return of spring to get their lines wet. We didn’t hear of anyone targeting ocean rockfish but…
January 6, 2023
Coastal Mid-Atlantic Fishing Report, January 27 Update: We have good news from the Virginia Marine Resources Commission. They have voted to open a special recreational black sea bass season from February 1 through the 28 of 2023. More information…
December 1, 2022
Coastal Mid-Atlantic Fishing Report, December 30 Update: Strong winds and an arctic blast made fishing difficult last week throughout most of the region. Along with tough conditions, there aren’t a ton of fishing opportunities this time of year…