Way South Fishing Reports

Way South Chesapeake Fishing Report, November 20 Update:

With an influx of specks moving down from northern waters, Virginia anglers are enjoying great speck fishing at the marsh islands, structure, and occasionally deeper water than we found them in throughout summer. Four-inch soft plastic paddle tails, Gulp! Shrimp or Jerk Shad, and fresh shrimp under corks are all good bets for the specks. Twister-tailed four-inch soft plastics with some sparkle in rootbeer, chartreuse, and salt and pepper were all hot choices this week. While many of the trout are small right now, there are keepers and the occasional jumbo fish mixed in.

south bay speckled trout
This pic is from last year, but we thought it was too cool not to share. Courtesy of Travis Long

Around the CBBT, the tog bite is picking up. Ocean’s East reported that going for them with sand fleas or crab chunks is common, and there are plenty to be picked up around the pilings. They didn’t hear a whole lot about drum, however, crummy weather for most of the week did keep plenty of boats off the open water and that could be why.

Large (over-slot for release) stripers are in the game right now. Trolling from the Cell to the CBBT the favorite option. A few big fish breaking 40-inches were reported to Oceans East. Those more interested in putting fish in the box fast have been tossing jigs and spoons close to the CBBT structure and catching some 20-somethings. We heard that the second island produced a few box-fish last week.

Way South Chesapeake Fishing Report, November 13 Update:

Ocean’s East let us know that there are still specks hanging around shorelines and the islands. While they’re beginning to thin out, warm weather has prevented them from fleeing in big numbers and the bite is still good. Anglers tossing twister-tails and sparkly soft plastics or fishing shrimp and/or live bull minnow under corks are bringing ‘em in. Most of the specks aren’t huge, but there are still some large ones being caught. Bigger tugs come from time to time from reds, mostly in the inlets, and often on shrimp baits. Hampton correspondent Chuck Harrison checked in after a trip to the HRBT late this week which confirmed that report, having caught numerous 14- to 16-inch specks, one 19-incher, and a 22-inch redfish.

drum in the water
There are still some drum in town, mostly being caught by bait anglers but hitting lures now and again, too.

Ocean’s East also reported that there are plenty of tautog around the CBBT, eager to take sand fleas. Although they said that many of the fish have been small, there are keepers mixed in, and working for them will eventually pay off. Oddball hold-out sheepshead popped up a few times this week at the CBBT too, quite late for them but not too much of a surprise with the balmy November we’re having. 

Thinking about rockfish? The channel edges have been cruised by plenty of trollers this week, many of whom caught some stripers but didn’t bring home dinner due to the size constraints. We have gotten a few reports of anglers hooking into them around the bridge and the HRBT (despite Chuck’s experience; he reported not-a-one mixed with his trout) as well, but finding one the right size can be difficult. And we should also note that we did hear from two other readers trolling for stripers in this zone who struck out completely, too. Anglers jigging have reported some success with them, bouncing six-inch white, chartreuse, and pearl soft plastics off bottom, but again mostly throwbacks.

Way South Chesapeake Fishing Report, November 6 Update:

Dropping temps haven’t scared off the speckled trout yet, with Ocean’s East reporting that they’re still showing up around the HRBT and the inlets as well as on the eastern shore creeks. Nicer fish have shown up occasionally, with plenty of keepers in the mix. Although they’ve begun to thin out slightly, we’re hoping that they’ll stick around for a bit longer. Most boats have been bringing them aboard with four-inch soft plastics and GULP! jigs or paddle-tails. Whites and greens have been standouts, especially glittery green twister-tail grubs. Swimming plugs and small half-ounce white bucktails dressed with chartreuse, pink, and purple twisters have also been effective.

holding up a tautog
It's getting to be that toggy time of year!

Ocean’s East also reported plenty of taugtog around the CBBT, eager to take sand fleas. Although they said that many of the fish have been small, they suggested sticking with it if you want to take home some fish. Some keepers are mixed in, and working for them will eventually pay off. An oddball hold-out sheepshead or two still pops up here and there as well, though this action has tapered off and can be expected to end in the near future.

The channel edges have been cruised by plenty of trollers this week, many of whom caught undersized schoolie stripers but didn’t bring home dinner. Anglers are also hooking into a fair number of stripers around the bridge (and the HRBT), too, and some hit the slot. Still, the majority throughout the area are small. Stripers are coming in with the specks right now in the shallows and inlets, as well. It hasn’t been uncommon for anglers targeting the specks to find mostly small rockfish on the ends of their line.

October 2, 2020
Way South Chesapeake Bay Fishing Report, October 29 Update: Hampton Correspondent Chuck Harrison made it out to Little Creek and the HRBT, where he reported a decent speckled trout bite with four fish in the 17- to 18-inch range and “a bunch” of… Read more...
September 4, 2020
Way South Chesapeake Bay Fishing Report, September 25 Update: Anglers: due to all the blustery weather the past week, we had a tough time getting our usual data dump. Reader reports were down and several of our usual sources simply said they haven'… Read more...
August 7, 2020
Way South Chesapeake Bay Fishing Report, August 28 Update: It seems that the cobia are back in action, after a bit of a midsummer hiatus. Two readers fishing out of Cape Charles reported catching a limit with multiple throwbacks as well, while… Read more...