December; can you believe it?Â Novemberâ€™s Speckled trout fishing was GREAT; Iâ€™m guessing December will be great too and the trout will be bigger!Â Weâ€™ve had a pretty mild fall and it looks like this December should be very good Speckled trout fishing along with a few other species around Wrightsville Beach, NC.
In December I catch some of the biggest Speckled trout all year, but you need to know which lures work better for bigger trout; bigger lures=bigger trout!Â Hard baits like MirrOlures have put some big trout in the boat for me and for many other anglers over the years.Â MirrOlureâ€™s 52M, 52MR and TT series are great big trout baits.Â Try these lures in colors: 11 (redhead), 11FGO (Flo.orangehead), 21 (blackback), 26 (redback), 51 (white/white), 704 (pink/yellow), 808 (black/gold/orange), CFPR (chart/pearl), HP (hotpink), Capt. Jot Custom color only available at Texâ€™s tackle and for great night fishing; PD (purple demon).
Good looking scented lures that have been working very well for me are Berkley Gulpâ€™s three inch shrimp and there newer three inch Ripple mullet.Â All the colors have worked well for me, but here is a few that I like for trout (shrimp pattern); Watermelon red glitter, rootbeer/gold, pearl white and new penny.Â Berkley Gulpâ€™s Ripple Mullet in colors glow/chartreuse, pearl, rootbeer gold/chart, pink and goby magic/chart are all good trout baits.Â Â All of these baits have Gulps great scent, great action and come in some great colors too!
The grub (soft plastic) has been around forever in the fishing world!Â These days they come in so many different colors, here are few that work well for me when trout fishing.Â Saltwater Assassin makes a load of different grubs; I prefer the sea shad four inch pattern in colors chicken on a chain, rainbow trout, copperhead, new moon, sweet pea, pink diamond and silver
phantom/chart.Â I rig all these grubs with 1/8oz, ÂĽ oz and 3/8oz jig heads in colors gray, red and brown.Â Donâ€™t forget that I rig all of my Speckled trout lures with fluorocarbon leaders; trout have very good eyesight and later in the season like December the water can get very clear!Â Get yourself a good fluorocarbon like Berkley Pro Spec or Berkley Vanish; both of these work great in twenty pound test.
In December another fish I really like to hunt for on sunny, warmer and light wind days is schooling Redfish.Â I find these schools on oyster rocks/flats, sand bars in the surf and shallow flats on the ICW.Â In December the Reds are not hard to catch when you find them, but some times finding them can be a challenge.Â My go to bait for the winter Redfish are scented grub like the Berkley Gulp Ripple Mullet or fire tail shrimp; Redfish love these things.Â Rig grubs with thirty or forty pound mono or fluorocarbon and a darker colored jig heads like red or brown should get the redfish to bite for you.
Not too far from Wrightsville Beach in historical down town Wilmington runs the Cape Fear River and in the Cape Fear there are some cold weather biting Striped Bass.Â These fish are not the easiest to catch, but they fight very well even in cold water.Â Working drop offs and grass lines on the edge of the river is where you can find the Stripers, using swim bait lures and Berkley Power Bait, Berkley Havoc Grass pig lures and Berkley Gulp Jerkshad should put a few Cape Fear Stripers on you line.Â Rig these lures on swimbait hooks for weedless fishing, (lots of hangs in the river).Â Donâ€™t forget that the Cape Fear River Striped Bass Fishery is closed; catch and release only!
Tackle run down: PENN Battle II & Clash Spinning reels sizes 2000, 2500& 3000 for the Redfish, Speckled trout and Striped BassÂ Rods: PENN Battalion 6â€™6â€ť & 7â€™ med/light and medium action; line Spiderwire Ultra-cast in eight, ten and fifth-teen pound or Berkley NanoFil (trout fishing) in eight, ten or twelve pound test.
Thanks for reading Marry Christmas, Happy New Year and good winter fishing to you!
Capt. Jot Owens
PENN Reels Elite Staff
Ranger Boats Pro Staff