Winyah Bay has a credible history as a striped bass fishery, and it could be coming back. There are still some old timers around that can tell you about the days of trolling buck tails around the bridges and pilings on the western channel. This is the time of year when stripers used to show up like clockwork.
So what happened to the striped bass fishing in Winyah Bay? Do they just not frequent the area any more? Does it have something to do with all of the fish that seem trapped in Lakes Marion and Moultrie? Climate change? Who knows? One thing is for sure, and that is that people around here simply do not target them like they used to.
We’re Seeing a Striper Comeback
In recent years, I have stumbled upon small schools of stripers in various places near Georgetown’s estuaries. We even caught a true striper keeper (see above photo) on a trip last year. We have had days catching over 10 fish while we were not even targeting them…they just happened to be in the same place, at the same time we were. There never really was any rhyme or reason to why they were there.
On these occasions, just like the location, various baits of choice produced strikes. We basically caught stripers on the same bait we were already using while targeting other species. These baits consist of live bait, artificials, and topwater. One day, I actually found a huge school of stripers that would not hit anything we threw at them. It happened to be an overcast day, so I figured why not try topwater; and they could not stand it! We ended up catching around 15 all on topwater!
Commitment to Pattern Winyah Bay Striped Bass
This time of year allows me the luxury of trying new things, and it’s the best time to find a pattern on this fishery! Some days I will team up with other local guides while scouting these fish. While I have had some very successful days catching stripers, these scouting trips can also lead to coming home with a skunk on the boat; but that is part of the challenge. Those days of hot striped bass action make it all worth it! There are a couple of places where I recently caught a nice fish on every other cast; however reproducing those results has proved challenging.
These fish just seem to be nomads. They thrive in both fresh and salt water. It is becoming very clear to me that they like to move around… a lot! Sure chasing these fish can be frustrating, but it is so rewarding when you finally get on a strong striped bass bite!
Striped Bass Fishing Charters in Georgetown
If you are looking for a challenging adventure, Harvest Moon Fishing Charters will do our best to make it happen. Give us a call, and I will give you my honest assessment of our chances for a successful day of catching stripers. There are opportunities to catch multiple other species in the area, so we can always try to make something happen. If you want to book a trip right away, we have online booking available for your convenience.