WELCOME TO FREEMAN'S BAIT & TACKLE

In business since 1967, Freeman's Discount Bait & Tackle is Atlantic Beach's oldest and best established bait and
tackle shop. We're located on the left just before the Atlantic Beach light, the closest tackle shop to the Oceanana Pier.
NC Coastal Fishing License

Over 1900 square feet of retail space, Freeman's offers the largest selection of Shimano and Penn reels, Custom Key
Largo rods and Shakespear Ugly Stik rods. Inshore and offshore tackle by Iland Lure, Blue Water Candy, Sea Striker,
Berkley Gulp and many hard to find items. Fresh, frozen, live and artificial baits, along with in house rod and reel
repair.
Our experienced staff is always on hand to offer free advice and friendly service.
Look for the BLUE bait shop, Freeman's Discount Bait & Tackle, for all your fishing needs.

FISHING REPORT


August 4, 2018

We have had a long stretch of rainfall and stormy conditions throughout the last couple of weeks, but things are now calming down and getting more optimal for some fishing. The annual run of Striped Mullet is just beginning and fishing is about to bust wide open.

Topwater fishing for Red Drum has been really good, even with this nasty band of weather. The Red Drum have been loitering around areas with high concentrations of Striped Mullet, typically on shallow mud/shell flats with some Oyster shell nearby. There have been many over slot Drum coming in from the ocean and if you have a grown one crush your topwater it sounds like a can of compressed air exploding. The Speckled Trout bite is also very much alive, however it has been a hit or miss type scenario. Live bait has been producing for the Speckled Trout as well as topwaters at dawn, and also baits like the "Vudu Shrimp" and "Gulp" natural shrimp. Flounder fishing has been strong as well. Carolina rigs fished with a 12-15" fluorocarbon leader and live mullet is the best way to target them. A 3/0 live bait/Kahle hook will work great for Carolina Rigs. Sheepshead and Black Drum are here and will be here at all the typical places like the Port Wall, AB Bridge, and local docks and marinas until late October. We have plenty of fiddler crabs in stock. Tarpon are being caught in the Neuse River, and being hooked up and jumped off on the Bogue Inlet Pier, with many other sightings all along our beachfront.

Nearshore fishing has been good, with solid catches of King Mackerel and a few Scattered Dolphin being taken at places like the Sea Buoy and NW Places. There have actually still been a few leftover Cobia seen and caught, so always have a pitch rod with you ready to deploy.

Amberjack and Barracudas will keep anglers busy all day. There have also been some very nice Spanish Mackerel and Flounder being caught at AR315.

Surf Fishing is starting to pick up. Lots of Spanish Mackerel and Blues are being caught by those plugging from piers. Black Drum, Pompano, Sea Mullet, Croaker and Red Drum are being taken by people bottom fishing the surf with dead baits. Flounder, Red Drum, and even a few rogue Speckled Trout are being caught off the beach by those fishing live bait and artificial. If you have questions about what types of artificial lures to use on the beach, come into the shop and we will get you pointed in a couple of directions depending on the turbidity, visibility, and swell.

Not a ton of boats have been going offshore lately, but the ones who have caught some nice Wahoo on the troll. The Grouper fishing has also been really good as well. There are still plenty of Sailfish, White Marlin and Wahoo at the Big Rock too, so plenty of options to
pursue.


 

 


July 18, 2018

Fishing right now requires sunscreen, water, and a game plan. The reason a game plan is necessary is because there are a lot of options to be had at this time of the year. Without proper planning you simply won't have as good of odds of having a successful day on the water.

 

Inshore there has been an awesome bite on Red Drum on topwater plugs, they have been getting all the way into the Spartina grass on flood tides. As far as sight fishing for Reds, many of them have been seen tailing in the grass. You will want to be quiet and stealthy so you do not spook them, because in shallow water these fish are spooked easily.

Speckled Trout action can be found in the earliest times of the morning and topwater lures are still the go-to method for catching a grown one at this time of the year. Flounder fishing has been awesome. Anywhere from the nearshore wrecks to dock pilings in the ICW are great places for them. Fish them with a Carolina Rig and a live Mullet minnow.

Spanish Mackerel, King Mackerel, and Mahi are all still scattered around nearshore reefs and the Sea Buoy. Live baiting with Menhaden or else dead bait Cigar minnow rigs would be the way to go for this type of fishing. Sheepshead and Black Drum have been biting very well. Dock and bridge pilings in the ICW with live Fiddler Crabs is the best way to target them.

Surf fishing has been good for those soaking cut shrimp, squid or cut mullet. The species that have been encountered for those soaking bottom rigs includes: Croaker, Spot, Black Drum, Sea Mullet, Pompano, Red Drum and small Flounder. For those casting artificials or live baiting there have been some nice Flounder, Spanish Mackerel and Red Drum being caught from the beach. If you want the shot at some deeper water from the beach, try fishing at Fort Macon State Park near the Coast Guard Station, you never know what might be lurking around on that stretch of water. There have still been pods of Tarpon being sighted running the beach in front of the Cape.

Offshore the trolling bite is slowing down a bit, but it won't be long at all until we have a really awesome Wahoo bite going on. Bottom fishing for Grouper and Triggerfish has been really great the last couple of weeks, with some of the Grouper being caught in 65-70 feet of water. Some Swordfish were caught in the last couple weeks as well! There have also been a fair amount of Blue Marlin hookups on the troll. 

As always, 

Tight Lines to you from Freeman's 

 

5th Annual Surf Fishing Tournament

2018 Tournament Dates: OCT. 5th - Oct. 7th

* Required






TIDE CHART

 

FISH CALCULATOR

Enter the length and girth of the fish and press the Calculate button.
If you do not know the girth, leave it blank and we will estimate it for you.
Length is measured from the V-notch in the tail to the tip of the lower jaw.

 
Fish Weight Calculator
Length:  Inches
Girth:  Inches
Weight*:  Pounds
*This is only an estimate