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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was a albie addict until we started our family a decade ago. Thinking about heading down to Cape Lookout mid-October. I tried fishing from the Shackleford side of Beaufort inlet last Oct and the ferry captain said they don't come in there like they used to. Don't have a power boat so I'll be limited to shore fishing. I would be interested in any info on how things have been over the last couple of years and what to expect.
 

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I only make it down 2-3 times in the fall...and the fishing perhaps has changed over the last few years. Biggest change I see is that folks are going earlier...i.e. early to mid-Oct....rather than waiting until late Oct and early Nov. I still see folks fishing from the beach on Shack at the inlet...and still see folks fishing at the "bight" on the Cape.... I think some of the Harker's island ferrys still run folks out and drop them off on that spit of sand at the bight. Some days it's epic fishing...and then it's dead for several days. Some days they are off Atlantic Beach...some days off the shoals...some days on the East Side....some days in front of Shack. Advantage of going in early to mid Oct. seems to be that there are a bunch of other species feeding near the beach on Shack...if the Albies aren't cooperating.
 

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If you do Shack, is the Beaufort end a good spot? I took a ferry from Beaufort to Shack last summer on a day when the CLO ferries weren't running due to iffy weather. They did the short hop to the near end, which is why they were willing to keep running during iffy weather. It was not much of a trek around to the front side and it's a steep beach there that seems like it would have good fishing.
 

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I got a very fast yak to walk um down this year...I really think it will be easy when there busting Bait close to shore. Can't wait to try.
 

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Where I have seen most shore anglers fishing is on the west end...right at the ship channel and just a short run from Beaufort...inside and alongside the channel...and just outside. On an outgoing tide, the current can rip out pretty fast from behind Shack....

Several guys tell me they do pretty good launching their yaks at Atlantic Beach and working that area. Sometimes you'll find albies right next to the beach in only a couple feet of water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
"If you do Shack, is the Beaufort end a good spot?"

It would be hard to fish the beach for albies. The hot spot on Shackleford used to be the inside of Beaufort inlet where the current would rip right against the shore. The inlet has changed a LOT over the last few years and I don't know if that works anymore- the ferry captain that took us over said it hadn't been good there for years. I'm planning on taking a ferry from Harker's to the Hook at CL. In October if the albies aren't in at least the Spanish and blues should be around.
 

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If you do Shack, is the Beaufort end a good spot? I took a ferry from Beaufort to Shack last summer on a day when the CLO ferries weren't running due to iffy weather. They did the short hop to the near end, which is why they were willing to keep running during iffy weather. It was not much of a trek around to the front side and it's a steep beach there that seems like it would have good fishing.
It's always a crap shoot when you're fishing from the beach, but rough point (west end of Shack) is as good as anyplace from what I've seen over the years. Being able to flyfish it will depend on conditions.
 

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I'm not sure if the new Ferry Service run by the park is dropping anyone off at the Cape lookout spit anymore. You might want to give them a call, but I seriously doubt it. I think they just go to the lighthouse. If you can get to the spit, it might be worth it, because it was still a great place to catch albies from the beach last year. I would wait until you hear good reports of albies off the west beach of cape lookout (jetty area) and off of shackleford before you go.

I was just at the Beaufort Inlet side of Shackleford the other day. The place has changed enormously over the last 2 years, but there is a really good rip coming of the beaufort end of shack on the sound side on an outgoing tide. Goes from 4ft to over 10ft and the bait was stacked in there. The Spanish and ladyfish were destroying the bait 10-20ft off the sand the other day. I've got to think the albies will be doing the same there in a month.

And yes they are here earlier the last few years. Id say prime time is mid September through Halloween.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
All right, I'm starting to get excited. Time to tie some flies :)
I guess I'll call Barbour's and Harker's Island Fishing Center to see if anyone is still running people to the Hook.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
We'll have to see if we can get a group trip going. I may be vacationing there mid-October with my family but if the fishing reports are good I may not be able to hold out. For anyone that hasn't fished for albies it is mind-blowing wether on fly or medium spinning tackle.
 

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I planning to get in on the Albies this year, now that I have a capable boat!!

I have an 8wt Redington Vapen paired with an Allen Alpha III. Think that's sufficient?
As long as the rod has good back bone any rod 8wt and above will work. The reel is the most important piece. Must have a good smooth drag. I've never heard of Allen until now. But if its drag is smooth and strong it should be fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
An 8wt is the minimum but will be fine. A 10wt handles the wind better. I'm not up on the current tackle but that reel looks fine. You need a smooth drag that can handle heat and a couple hundred yards of backing. It's typical that on the initial run the handles will be spinning fast enough to bloody your knuckles before you get control :eek: I only used two flies- thin surf candies tied with nothing but flash and a small popper of my own design. The popper will pull fish to the surface even when they're pinning bait to the bottom.
A spare spool is a good thing to have with spinning tackle. The only lure needed are little sting silver type casting spoons with the treble swapped for a single hook. Instead of a bite leader double the last six inches of line and re-tie often if spanish and blues are in the mix.
 

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Main thing u need is very little wind. If pursuing on the fly.
use 10 lb mono on ultralight spinning reel...makes for a drag screaming good time...and very long casts in font of the busting fish.
 

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8wt....sufficient
When I started chasing albies, everybody recommended a 10 wt. And, often Cape Lookout and albie fishing were referred to as "where 10wts go to die..." cause so many rods were broken (or in some cases pulled overboard....)

Now I see some of the veteran anglers catching (or attempting) smaller albies on 7 wt etc. I used an 8 wt once and decided it was not nearly enough rod....especially when the hooked fish is circling under the boat and you are trying to work it to the surface. I suspect that is when most rods get broken....the angler puts an extreme bend in the rod trying to work the fish up....and the rod bursts from the strain or from a sudden surge by the fish. In those situations you can minimize the bend in the rod and apply pressure to the fish using the butt section of the rod by lowing the rod tip to the water or in the water. That reduces the bend in the tip and you can then use the strength in the lower section of the rod to apply more pressure to the fish.

I still favor the 10wt. And if action is really hot with lots of busting and breaking fish....my preference is a 12 wt. That heavier outfit allow you to play the fish harder; get it in quicker and release it; and then cast to another. And, the heavier line makes casting more efficient when it's windy.

And, since sometimes tackle takes a beating....the less expensive rods may be a good way to go. And, if the budget is tight, I've seen a bunch of albies landed on $100 dollar reels...
 
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