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I have fished salt before, but either with a guide or just messing around from a pier. I live 250 miles from the Ga coast, my closest access to salt fishing. I have the tackle, both fly and conventional. I have a 16ft Carolina Skiff with 40hp Mariner, rigged and ready. What I don't have is the experience. Where do I start? What species do I target? Any 1 specie to "cut my teeth on?" I am aware of tides, but not the effects of tides on fishing. Anything specific that I need to know? I hope to make several trips to the Ga Golden Isles this spring and summer, so let me hear it.
 

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Just livin’ my life easy come easy go...
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Unless you have time on your hands, I’d hire a guide in the area you want to fish. Be very up front in wanting to learn from them about fishing the area.
 

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I would post this over in the region section look for Georgia, South Carolina,North Carolina they're all similar water. I live way down south so can't advise on that area but someone over that way could help you.
 

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I'm not looking for area specific info, but more general saltwater info. I'll repost there too.
Okay so up that way your going to have spartina grass and creeks so I would look for cuts or intersection and fish them. Tides are going to be a major influence as lower tides have areas that hold fish in deeper holes but you may not have enough water to get to them. Saltwater fishing is way different than freshwater but it's nothing time on the water won't fix.
 

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I'm sure you know this, but time on the water is going to be your best friend. With that setup (assuming you have a trolling motor, if not you need one) I would fish shallows around and in creeks and other protected water. Fish the spartina grass, logs, duck blinds, oyster bars, any structure. Stick to areas with flowing water, and try to cover a lot of ground.

For spin fishing I'd use mirrolures and gulp swimming mullet on a jighead (1/8 or 1/4oz) to target trout and redfish. Flood tides are probably your best bet for fly fishing, although you don't really have the right boat for that it could be done.

The good news for you is that area has a ton of creeks and back water, so there should be plenty of skiff exploring to do. Tide swings are probably going to be huge, so keep that in mind if you go exploring when the tide is in.

I was in the same "boat" about 10 years ago, good luck, you're going to need it! But things will get easier and you'll learn something on each trip.
 

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Birds, bait, slicks, tide movement and structure apply to any area. Keep lure selection simple and don’t overthink anything. Chicken on a Chain soft plastics, 1/2 oz gold spoon, a bone topwater and 3” gulp shrimp under a popping cork will keep you busy.
 

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Years ago I use to fish the St. Augustine and Jacksonville intercoastal waterway. I had the best luck fishing a falling tide around creek mouths and oyster bars. Everything ate a live shrimp on a 1/4oz jighead reeled slowly with the current. Sometimes with a bobber drifted with the current.
 

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I have fished from Brunswick up to St. Helena Sound, and I advise is get a guide a few time. This is an invaluable help in laying a good foundation. As mentioned previously, this fishery is very tied dependent, and the fishable times are narrow unless you have other spots. I have fished for Reds where the window is about 90 minutes. If you get there late or early, you are out of luck.
The fishery is too vast just to throw a dart. The guide will help you narrow your search.
It is not that you will just steal the spots, but instead see what you need to see.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks guys.This is what I wanted to hear. I fished with a guide there once and have the go ahead to do it again. This time I want to spend the time learning more about the "how to's" of salty fishing, not just trying to catch fish. If any of you get up to the northeast Ga way, hit me up and I'll try to get you hooked up with some sodium free trout or stripers.
 

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A factor not yet mentioned is wind. Look at the location you are going on Google Earth, look at wind and tide forecasts, plan to fish channels, edges, flats where you you are not getting hammered by wind and waves. Early and late tend to be best times, especially when they coincide with the first hour or two of outgoing or incoming tide.
 

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Winter is the perfect time to sight fish. Water clarity becomes gin clear.
Add a cooler or platform to the front deck of your CS, the extra height will vastly improve your ability to see fish.

Consider leaving your boat & trailer at the coast in a secure storage for less hassle trailing it back home..... ICM
 

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I have fished salt before, but either with a guide or just messing around from a pier. I live 250 miles from the Ga coast, my closest access to salt fishing. I have the tackle, both fly and conventional. I have a 16ft Carolina Skiff with 40hp Mariner, rigged and ready. What I don't have is the experience. Where do I start? What species do I target? Any 1 specie to "cut my teeth on?" I am aware of tides, but not the effects of tides on fishing. Anything specific that I need to know? I hope to make several trips to the Ga Golden Isles this spring and summer, so let me hear it.
 

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The best thing to do is wait till you get there and ask at a bait and tackle shop where you are going to fish . They will set you up with the right stuff ,for what is being caught at that time .No use getting a lot of stuff you dont need . Stop at the boat places in the area where you are going they will always give you good advice .You will love the food there !!!
 
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