Harkers Report [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Harkers Report

11-20-2005, 09:11 AM
Just got back from a week of fishing around Harkers. We trailered my friend's boat down from Worcester in 13.5 hours which really wasn't a bad drive at all. We stayed in Atlantic Beach at a great little motel (Fisherman's Inn) with boat slips just outside the rooms and a nice porch for postgame cocktails.

For the first 3 days of the trip, the conditions were FAC and about 80 degrees. Shorts and T-shirts weather the week before Thanksgiving! We never had to stray far from the west side of the shoals due to the incredible amount of bait and fish. The albies had 2 inch anchovies balled up so thick you could see the orange stain on the water from 100 yards away. They were eager to whack clousers and big crease flies ripped across the edges of the bait, making for some exciting visuals. Some of the blitzes were nearly a mile long :Eyecrazy:

The seas built over the next couple of days and the fishing died off on the west side. We poked through the shoals to the east and eventually found great action offshore. Very few boats made the long run through 4'-6' seas so we were fishing in relative solitude. There were 4'-8' sharks mixed in with the albies here, many cruising right through the bait ball on top. When we could get the bait ball hiding under boat you could see layers of anchovies, albies and many sharks of various sizes all the way down - very cool. Many of our fish got whacked by 6' sharks on top near the boat - right on the surface. At times it was sketchy reaching down to tail your fish in the big swell with sharks lurking below.

The last two days of the trip the temps dropped by 30 degrees and the wind howled 25+ from the north. We went out and looked but could not get across the shoals and returned wet and frozen early in the day.

Overall it was an incredible trip. If you go bring plenty of backup rods with you. We went through 3 rods, a reel and 2 lines over 7 days of fishing. Big thanks to Nat Moody for the gear loaners and tequila cocktail recipie.

11-20-2005, 10:56 AM

Dude that sounds amazing. I am thinking about a long weekend trip... guess it will have to be soon.

thanks for the report, I think - my mind is now "gone to Carolina"

11-20-2005, 05:01 PM
Big storm coming. It may be over. I am glad to see that Big Dave was able to find some fish offshore. It was tough for us guys in the small boats after the weather went stale.

11-21-2005, 04:25 AM
Big Dave were the broken rods due to high sticking or faulty rods? Curious, what brand were they ? Also, what caused the reel to fail? FishHawk

11-21-2005, 08:26 AM
FishHawk it was a little bit of both. Most of the problems came when we were doubled up with the fish running under the boat - especially when it came time to tail them in 4-6 foot seas. We had our drags screwed down to avoid feeding the sharks which probably amplified the problem. Rods were Sage. The cork on one of the reels separated from the plate. Although the fish were not 20 pounders there were still plenty sporty on 10wts.

12-01-2005, 12:01 PM
Was visiting my Dad for Thanksgiving and decided to seek out Albies out of Morehead City, NC on 11/28. Hearing the reports on this forum were encouraging even though we were at the tail end of the season.

Cold front and high winds during the Thanksgiving week scattered the big schools that were in the area a week prior. Despite the poor conditions (2' seas, lots of chop, overcast, etc...) we were able to chase down 5-8 small schools of Albies but only got a couple casts off, and no fish strikes!!!. The fish were very wary and disappeared just as soon as we got in casting range. Got one fish to boil at one cast so hearts were pounding for a second.

Speckeled trout were biting well so at least the day was saved as we brought in tons of 2-4lbers. Will have to wait to next year for my first Ablie.