Outer Banks surf fishing may be the least expensive of all of the choices, but it certainly does not take a back seat to the other OBX fishing options. If you question whether surf fishing is worthwhile on the Outer Banks, check out this Outer Banks video where the blue fish are literally throwing themselves on the beach. You will find the experienced and novice alike trying their hand at surf casting. The season runs in parallel with the pier fishing season from March through December, with the peak months being May and November.
You will find people surf fishing all up and down the Outer Banks coast. The experience angler will tell you that success will be dictated by the sloughs, currents, temperature and seasons. Your local bait shop may be able to point you to a good location, so don’t be afraid to ask.
One of the most popular locations is Cape Point off of the tip of Cape Hatteras. The catch list at Cape Point include bluefish, pompano, striped bass, croaker, Spanish mackerel, flounder, spot, sea mullet (or kingfish), and weakfish. Red drum, however, is the big draw here, with the peak season being the middle of October to the middle of November. This area gets quite crowded, so a good plan "B" may be the stretch of beach from Salvo NC to Buxton NC and with 15 miles of park service land between Salvo NC and Avon NC, you are bound to find a secluded spot. To find out more about the fish you may catch Outer Banks surf fishing follow this link.
If you are in the Outer Banks in April or November, you could be part of the "big bluefish blitz", where the blues run themselves ashore chasing bait fish. Yes, unlike my neck of the woods, you can catch bluefish while surf fishing. Amazing that you can catch your full of blues, as they are schooling fish, from the shore.
The open face spinning reel is the most common reel used in Outer Banks surf fishing, with the medium size, usually holding between 12 to 15 pounds of fishing line, the most popular choice. The lighter the reel, the lighter the pound test line that it holds. The rods generally are 8 to 12 feet long. The longer the rod, the farther you can cast your bait and hook. You will be attempting to get beyond the breaking surf, which is generally about 100 yards, so go with the longer end of the rod length to play it safe. The fishing line is sold based on "pounds test" meaning the line should not snap at or below that pound of fish. Ask the bait shop people to make a recommendation based on what is running. Weights for bottom fishing are usually pyramid weights, with bait generally ranging from worms to live bait depending on what you are after. Don’t forget the cooler with ice to store your catch so it does not start to spoil before you make it back to your house.
Check out these eBay auctions for any you may need for your trip.
Outer Banks surf fishing conditions are usually best at either high tide or low tide during the new or full moon period due to an increase in water movement. Get yourself a tide chart to determine when the best time is.