April 23, 2024

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Complete Guide to Perdido Pass Fishing

Reading Time: 8 minutes

Nestled just west of the Alabama-Florida border, Perdido Pass serves as the gateway to the Gulf of Mexico. For anglers, this means a chance to target some of the finest game fish on the planet. But what’s even better about fishing in Perdido Pass is that its inshore waters are almost equally prolific, making it a diverse, exciting fishery.

Besides its namesake bay, Perdido Pass connects several other bays, bayous, and rivers to the ocean. These include Wolf Bay, Bay La Launch, Cotton Bayou, Bayou Saint John, and Old River. So even without leaving the calm coastal waters, you’ll have a myriad of spots to discover. If you do exit through the pass, however, there’ll be the country’s largest reef system waiting for you to fish.

If Perdido Pass sounds like a place you’d like to explore, keep reading. We’ll cover some of the species you can catch and where to fish for them. We’ll also go over ways to fish out here and the kind of experience you can expect with each approach. So without further ado, let’s get into it!

What kind of fish can I catch in Perdido Pass?

We’ve covered fishing in Alabama extensively, so this time around you’ll get to read about the species you can catch around Perdido Pass itself. Of course, we’ll also name a few exceptional species that are always worth getting out in the ocean for. Check out some of the most popular targets in these parts…

Redfish

There’s no other inshore fish more beloved in the Heart of Dixie than Redfish. They’re blessed with equal parts of beauty and brawn, with their spotted tails always being a welcome sight. Redfish are also stubborn fighters, always willing to duke it out until the very moment you snatch them out of the water.

An angler in sunglasses and a hat standing on the bow of his boat, holding a big Redfish he caught fishing, with Perdido Pass's jetties and waters behind him.
This photo was taken by Ben Watts of Watts Charter Fishing & Guide.

As luck would have it, Redfish will be one of your main targets when fishing in Perdido Pass. They’re abundant in these waters, with the pass itself providing them a path in and out of the local bays. What’s even better is that the action goes on yearround, with the fall bringing big “Bull” Reds into the fray.

Redfish are ravenous feeders, willing to bite on many different baits and lures. But while you can be flexible, most of the time a simple bottom rig or popping cork baited with shrimp, crab, or finger mullet does the trick. If you’re more of an artificial angler, weedless soft plastics, jigs, and swimbaits are popular choices.

Speckled Trout

Speckled Trout and Redfish are an inseparable duo in the waters surrounding Perdido Pass. And Specks are extremely fun to fish for. They’re good fighters, albeit with a weaker pull than their counterpart Reds. They’re also delicious, making for great table fare at the end of a long day on the water.

A young angler in a fishing hat holding a big Speckled Trout towards the camera with waters and the shore visible in the background.
This photo was taken by Landon Bell Southern Bend Inshore Charters.

Another similarity between Speckled Trout and Reds is their eagerness to bite. They’ll go for the same types of lures and bait, so it’s possible to target both on the same setup. In Perdido Pass, Speckled Trout will generally bite yearround, with the best season again taking place in the fall. Compared to Redfish, trophy Trout are a rare sight, so reeling one in is an achievement you can really take pride in.

Sheepshead

With jaws full of human-like teeth and stripes reminiscent of convict suits, Sheepshead boast unique looks. But rather than their appearance, what makes these fish so appealing to anglers is that they’re great for eating. Sheepshead feed on crustaceans and mollusks, giving them a delicate shellfish taste.

A man in sunglasses and a hat sitting in the center console seat of his boat and holding a Sheepshead he caught fishing in Perdido Pass, with two kids to the left of him posing for a photo.
This photo was taken by Kyle Smith of Prodigy Charters.

Around Perdido Pass, you can fish for Sheepshead throughout the year. However, the prime time to catch them is during late winter and early spring, when they spawn. They like to lurk near rocks, jetties, bridge pilings, and similar structures. Of course, you’ll also find them on the nearshore reefs.

Sheepshead are infamous bait thieves. This means small hooks (1/0 or 2/0) are a must when targeting them. Fiddler crabs and shrimp are their favorite food, but they’ll also bite on sand fleas, mussels, oysters, and barnacles.

Red Snapper

The Red Snapper season is a special event in Alabama. Throughout it, you’ll see hundreds of boats exit through Perdido Pass each morning, on their way to reel in their limits of these delicious fish. So if there’s ever a time to hit the reefs, it’s when Red Snapper are open for harvest.

A woman in sunglasses standing on a dock in Alabama, holding a sizeable Red Snapper, with the coastal waters visible behind her.
This photo was taken by Charlie Williams of Southern Sun Inshore Charters.

Usually, the federal Red Snapper season opens around June and lasts until sometime in August. Alabama’s state season begins around the same time, but the difference is that it typically remains open until a quota is filled. In 2022, this meant Alabama anglers were able to catch Red Snapper every Friday through Monday until December.

We mentioned Alabama is home to the country’s largest artificial reef program. What this should tell you is that there are countless spots where you can reel in Red Snapper. In fact, the fishing here is so good that Alabama dubs itself the “Red Snapper Capital of the World.” And most of these epic trips begin by riding through Perdido Pass.

And More!

Fishing inshore around Perdido Pass, there are several other fish you’re likely to get your hands on. These include Flounder, Bluefish, Spanish Mackerel, and Mangrove Snapper, to name a few.

A man and a woman sitting on a charter fishing boat off the coast of Perdido Pass, both holding a big King Mackerel, with the shore visible in the distance.
This photo was taken by Kyle Smith of Prodigy Charters.

Naturally, the list grows longer the more you go offshore. On the reefs, you’ll have the opportunity to reel in Triggerfish, Amberjack, Grouper, and more. King Mackerel are also often reeled in fairly close to shore during summer. Meanwhile, if you head deeper into the Gulf, there’ll be Cobia, Mahi Mahi, Wahoo, Tuna, and even Billfish to hunt for. Perdido Pass is your pathway to all of these.

Best Ways to go Fishing in Perdido Pass

Different fish require different approaches. So depending on what you want to catch, you’ll have to decide how you want to tackle the Perdido Pass waters. Take a look at a few popular ways to fish here.

Charter Fishing

Between the inshore bays, nearshore reefs, and deep seas, there’s a lot of water to cover around Perdido Bay. So it really pays off doing it with someone who knows them. Local charter captains are based in Orange Beach, which encompasses Perdido Pass. A few miles west, in Gulf Shores, there’s also a large fleet.

Four women gathered around the tower of a charter boat, three of them holding fish they caught, including a Flounder, a Sheepshead, and a Redfish.
This photo was taken by Austin Morgan of Blue Island Inshore Fishing Charter.

With an experienced captain guiding you, you’ll have no trouble catching fish around Perdido Pass. They’ll know what’s in season at the time of your adventure, where the fish might be lurking, and how to entice the bite. It’ll also be easy for you to tailor your trip to your exact needs, whether it’s catching an offshore giant or having a relaxed family outing.

Shore Fishing

Although hopping on a charter boat will give you more options, fishing from shore in Perdido Pass holds plenty of excitement on its own. Two jetties extend from each side of the pass and both are considered hotspots for coastal anglers.

An elderly man fishing from a dock near Orange Beach, Alabama. He's in the forefront of the photo while the dock extends behind him.

Besides the jetties, you also have the option of surf fishing in Orange Beach, as well as inshore in Cotton Bayou and the other inland waters. In general, you can expect to catch Redfish, Speckled Trout, and Flounder. On the ocean side, you might hook into Spanish Mackerel, Bluefish, and Sheepshead as well. You’ll just need your equipment and a fishing license.

Kayak Fishing

Since the waters inside Perdido Pass are sheltered from the ocean swell, they’re great for kayak fishing. Whether it’s in Perdido Bay, Cotton Bayou, or any of the other nearby waters, there’ll be fish to catch. There are also a few islands near the pass itself which you can explore.

A kayaker paddles in calm waters at sunrise, with the sun casting an orange tint over the waters.

If you decide to fish these waters aboard a kayak, keep one thing in mind – boat traffic. When it’s high season, thousands of boats will be riding in and out of Perdido Pass, leaving waves in their wake. So if you’re visiting during that time, you’ll fare a lot better if you go a little off the beaten path where boats won’t be passing you left and right.

Where can I fish in Perdido Pass?

An aerial photo of Perdido Pass, with its two jetties visible on the left side of the photo, while the bridge is visible to the right.

In Perdido Pass, you’ll find no shortage of places to fish from. On charters, it’s usually your captain who’ll tell where the best action is. Still, let’s take a look at a few spots you can consider fishing from.

  • Alabama Point: Located on the west side of Perdido Pass, Alabama Point is one of the most popular local spots to fish. The rocky jetties extending from the pass draw in bait fish and consequently bigger game that feed on it. Redfish, Speckled Trout, Flounder, and Pompano are all possible catches.
  • Bird and Robinson Island: Just north of Perdido Pass, you’ll find several bay islands, including Bird and Robinson. These are a treasure trove of fish, with all the inshore favorites at your fingertips. Outside the high season, these waters can also be fished from a kayak.
  • Orange Beach Pier: West of the pass, you’ll come upon Orange Beach. The pier on it belongs to the nearby Four Seasons, and you can only fish it if you’re staying at the hotel. However, this shouldn’t disappoint you because the waters directly under the pier still hold many prizes and you can fish them from the beach.
  • Perdido Pass Bridge: Besides Alabama Point, the nearby Perdido Pass Bridge is also a popular spot. Boat anglers can approach it from underneath, but you can also cast from the bridge itself.
  • The Trolling Corridor: If you head about 9 miles south of Perdido Pass, you’ll arrive at the Trolling Corridor. Here, you’ll get to catch King Mackerel, along with Bluefish, Jack Crevalle, Bonito, and even the rare Mahi Mahi. Nearby, there are also numerous reefs offering great Red Snapper action during summer.

Perdido Pass Fishing F.A.Q.

Perdido Pass: A Flora-Bama Fishing Hotspot

A photo of the Orange Beach fishing pier at sunset, with a thick layer of clouds in the skies.

Located just 2 miles from the iconic Flora-Bama bar, Perdido Pass is a tried and true coastal fishery. And when you add all the potential the offshore waters hold, it’s easy to see why this part of Alabama’s coast is considered world-class. Whether you pair up with a charter captain or choose to hit the jetties on your own, Perdido Pass will live up to your expectations.

Have you ever been fishing in Perdido Pass? What’s your favorite spot in the area? Hit the comment section and let us know!

The post Fishing in Perdido Pass: The Complete Guide appeared first on FishingBooker Blog.

By: Marko
Title: Fishing in Perdido Pass: The Complete Guide
Sourced From: fishingbooker.com/blog/perdido-pass-fishing/
Published Date: Wed, 07 Jun 2023 15:00:29 +0000

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