Flood Tide Fishing for Tailing Redfish
Flood Tide Fishing can be an incredible experience! These abnormally high tides occur mostly during full and new moon phases. King Tides around Pawleys Island can reach heights greater than 6 feet. As big tides fill the grass flats, Redfish swim into nearby creeks that empty onto these shallow grass flats. Redfish use these small feeder creeks as thoroughfares moving on and off the flats with the rise and fall of the tide. Once the fish arrive on these shallow flats they tip their tails up with their noses down. They are rooting for fiddler crabs beneath the pluff mud. The past evening some good buddies and I headed out of Georgetown in hopes of high water and tailing Redfish.
Flood tide fishing and Currents
The key to fishing flood tides is the Tides Tables and Charts. These tables predict heights and trends. I use this data to determine which flat I fish. I prefer arriving to my flat of choice early. Getting on the water prior to the peak of the tide allows me to judge the tide and watch it push in. Seeing where the water comes from will usually tell you where the first few fish will show up. That aside I also enjoy the gear preparation and the chatter of marsh hens and egrets. Once Flies are selected and rods rigged I make my move up on the poling platform. The tall poling platform on my skiff offers a height advantage and aids me in spotting fish from a distance. I scan to see where the water is coming in from and slowly push my Hell’s Bay skiff to where we can intercept tailing Redfish. This particular evening I watched the tide in the distance slowly fill the the flat. With the setting sun in the background I noticed my reflection on the water. I looked to the left and right as far as my eyes could see and saw nothing but expansive marsh. marsh.
The Redfish were Tailing
Tailing Redfish were filling the flat! With our hearts pounding we made our approach and lined up a great cast. The fly landed perfectly and the first fish of the night ripped line of the reel only to break us off on the jagged oysters. We had a few more shots as the sun was quickly disappearing but no fish cam to hand. Its evenings with friends like this that remind me it’s not about how many fish we catch.
Time with friends
Fishing or any other outdoor activity is about camaraderie and beautiful places fishing can take us. The salt marsh is truly a magnificent place. The fish and wildlife that inhabit these remote sections of coast really make it special. I’m thankful for the leaders before us that had the foresight to protect places like North Inlet, Winyah Bay and Cape Romaine. For more information about flood tide fishing for tailing Redfish feel free to contact us.