Fly fishing the expansive salt marshes on the South Carolina Coast is always an adventure.
Endless miles of coastline from Pawleys Island to Cape Romaine National Wild Life Refuge and beyond. The Low Country is not only majestic but unspoiled. The wildlife is abundant and the scenery is breath taking. It’s hard to believe that just a short distance from the hustle and bustle of Myrtle Beach anglers and outdoorsmen can experience back country solitude.
I set out to scout some old fishing grounds as well as some new ones. Our shore line, bays and inlets have changed a great deal since the historic flood back in October. He picked me up at my house in Pawleys Island and we headed south. As we drove over the bridges in Georgetown the sun was burning the mist off the water and I was reminded of how beautiful this area is. We launched the technical poling skiff along the Intercostal waterway in Georgetown. We pushed off from the dock and we were off; leaving all the stresses and worries of life at the dock.We blasted off down the Inter Coastal with the morning sun warming our faces and high hopes of what the day may bring. Once we arrived to the grounds I was shocked how much this area had changed since the big storm back in October. We poled our way back onto a big mud flat in about 4 to 8 inches of water. The grass shrimp were popping as the wading birds were fetching there morning breakfast.As I was taking in the scenery and enjoying the warmth of the morning sun I noticed some nervous water in a creek mouth about 40 feet in front. I told my fishing partner “11 o’clock”. I began to spin the boat and a beautiful cast rolled. Two strips and the water exploded! The fish ran at the boat and it was pandemonium tearing line off the Tibor reel all the way to the backing. The fish had ripped 100 feet of fly line before he could get his hand to the drag knob. After a short battle a beautiful Redfish came to hand.
As a guide I don’t get to spend much time on the front of the boat fishing so I was more than happy to get some bow time. We continued up the shallow mud flat and spotted a Redfish on an oyster point. The fish was tailing and belly crawling feasting on grass shrimp. Steve poled me into position and I piled up an ugly cast just beyond the fishes direction of travel. I slow stripped the fly past the fish and came tight. The battle was on!This fish was giving me quite the tussle on my 8 weight fly rod. Seeing and sight casting Redfish is exhilarating. These fish pull so hard and don’t give up easy. I almost forgot what it was like to be the one catching the fish. We had both landed a nice Redfish and had shots at a few more.
The winds came up so we stowed our rods and sat down for some lunch. We reflected on the day, realizing that we hadn’t seen another soul out on the water. We had it all to ourselves and we were grateful!
Till Next Tide
Captain Jeff Lattig