Mid Atlantic Fishing Report Mar 22 2018

Mid-Atlantic Fishing Report

Virginia Beach & Outer Banks


With the water temps being significantly below average there isn’t too much going on inshore. Scattered reports of drum in the backs of Rudee are coming in and expect those to pick up more and more as the water/air temps rise. Most success has come from offshore wrecks with seabass and tog action. The tog bite has been picking up as the water temp is getting into their sweet spot of mid 40’s and low 50s. Excellent catches have been reported from the Triangle Wrecks and others 20-30 miles off. Expect the tog bite to improve dramatically over this next week- so by the time you are reading this – you should be getting out to the CBBT and those structures that togs associate with. Blue crab and clam has been most popular bait selection.


Reports are coming in with drum and sea mullet reports coming in from the beaches south in Buxton and Hatteras Island. The water temps are in the low 50s in the southern Outer Banks but expect those to begin to rise as the winds shift from the south in the weeks to come. This is one of the most exciting times of year for inshore anglers – watching those water temps creep into the mid 50s and 60s which brings the schools of large drum, flounder begin to make their entrance, and cobia to follow. Look for the first reports to come from Ocracoke, Hatteras Inlet, and Fisherman’s Point. If you are on top of it, you will be the first to catch these massive schools of huge red drum to have one of the most epic days of fishing of a lifetime. Beach anglers can expect that bite to steadily pick up with these water temps on the rise – but all should keep a close eye on the wind direction – as a few solid days of a south wind could push water temps into that upper 50s and 60s threshold and bring in our first catches of our favorite inshore species. If you’re itching to get out and catch some fun fish then don’t forget the feeder rivers of the Pamlico Sound such as the Tar and Roanoke River that bring world-class fishing opportunities for striper in the 3-5lb range and shad fishing. From March through May (right now) are the days where catching 100+ fish is very possible.


Water temps are in the upper 40’s but the bass are hungry. They know even though the water temps are below average that their biological clocks are telling them to get ready for the spawn. Expect the bass season to really heat up towards the end of this week (March 26th-) with water temps expected to get into the mid 50s, especially in creeks and shallows.

Most reports have come from either male bass that have already moved shallow and looking for spawning areas or bigger numbers suspended at points, bluffs, and in transition areas from their winter haunts to early pre-spawn staging areas. However look for the week of March 26th to bring those air temps in the 70’s which will get the water into the 50s. Ocean’s East ‘bass experts’ say if they were to go out for bass – right now they would throw moving baits like jerkbaits, squarebill crankbaits, spinnerbaits- and if they weren’t hitting on that then slow it down with jigs, shaky heads, and finesse.