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Just wanted to introduce myself. I just recenly purchased a 12' manta ray kayak. My main purpose of use for it was chasing down cripples while duck hunting but, I thought it would be a change of pace to take it out fishing instead of bringing my other boat. I'm about 3 blocks from the cape fear in lillington and was thinking of using it there some this spring and summer. Anyone in the area that can give me some suggestions about the river. I have been down to the wildlife access a few times to work the dog but, never been in it.

Thanks,
 

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Red X Angler
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Welcome to the site. We have a growing number of yakkers of all styles and skill levels so I'm sure we have the folks to get you going!!
 

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I don't know anything about that location, but living by kelly springfield in fayetteville I'd like to find out about that area.
 

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Welcome Alden.

Fellow kayaker here, among other things (bank fishing, occasional boat fishing, but mostly chained to the computer). We hear a lot about the ends of the river - the wilmington area for saltwater fish, a little further up to the lock & dam area for bass/catfish, then way up here near the triangle we do have a number of folks who kayak fish the Buckhorn Dam area. Lillington is only 15 of miles from there. From the maps it looks like the river is still wide and shallow in your area, like it is below the Buckhorn (but I could be wrong). You can search the reports for Upper Cape Fear. We've been catching small bass (some ridiculously small) on small crankbaits, jerkbaits and spinners. I got a number of blow-ups on zoom horny toads - I think some may have been gar, but others were a better class of largemouths. Can't say that we unlocked any real secrets down there in our trips this year. I definitely caught a lot more fish when I switched to inline spinner (rooster tail) on my last trip, but the size went way down too.

Its an easy paddle when the water is low as it was this year - no problem going up or downstream. Below buckhorn 2' is a deep spot - lots of big chunk rock all over, just under the surface. There are areas of hundreds of yards of exposed rock with riffles and pools throughout - good looking flyfishing/rock hopping water - further downstream. Not so sure about working a kayak through there (seems like it might be tough against the current).

Above Buckhorn its 10+ feet deep and fishes like a lake as long as the water is running slow. Lots of cover on the shorelines, schooling fish working bait in the channel, etc... Crankbaits and worms have been reported as popular there for bass.

We've heard that there are stripers and hybrids trapped in these sections but I don't know that anybody caught one this year.

What are you looking to fish for?

Keep an eye on the connections forum out here - we try to post when we've got a group forming to fish a spot and you'd be welcome to join us. Not sure whether we'll get down that way in the cold, but if the water stays low, fishing the spillway at Buckhorn should be productive in the winter.
 

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PS Alden: you might want to look into the Fayetteville Area Angler's Network - they meet about once a month somewhere around Fayetteville to talk about fishing topics and wind up scheduling trips together and such. You can pick up a lot of tips & suggestions from that group.

They have their own forum space under the NC Fishing Clubs section. Keep an eye out for their next meeting and go see what they're all about.
 

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We've heard that there are stripers and hybrids trapped in these sections but I don't know that anybody caught one this year.
I can attest to what Jeff said- been there with him. Did see a Striper blow up on a topwater that my son was fishing in Sept. Didn't hook him up, but saw convict stripes.

You shouldn't have any trouble getting triangle kayakers to meet you in the middle there at Buckhorn.

Welcome aboard.
 
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