April 13, 2024

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The Complete Guide to Fishing at Corolla, NC

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Looking at it in terms of fishing, Corolla, NC is a place with a very specific profile that some anglers will like and others will more than adore. Our goal here will be to show you what this little slice of paradise is all about, and you can then decide if you want to give it a shot. We’d say it’s very much worth it!

Nestled on the northern part of the Outer Banks, fishing in Corolla, NC, provides easy access to brackish and freshwater to the west and the Gulf Stream to the east. In fact, Currituck Sound is one of those amazing places where freshwater and saltwater species live almost side-by-side. For a lot of anglers, that’s what you’d call a win-win combination. We’ll leave you to come to your own conclusion, and start off by showing all the species that call these waters home.

What can I catch while fishing in Corolla, NC?

If there’s one thing Corolla fishing has going for it, it’s variety. You can majorly switch up your surroundings and targeted species just by walking a few miles up or down the coast. From Bass and Catfish to Red Drum and Flounder, there’s plenty here to keep you busy. And for those with a bigger appetite, a whole new world opens up when you sail out offshore.

Largemouth Bass

But first things first, let’s see what you can catch in your proverbial backyard. Topping the list are definitely Largemouth Bass – America’s most popular freshwater game fish. The Currituck Sound is a well-known Bass hotspot and part of the reason why thousands of visitors flock to Corolla each year. Sadly, it’s not as good as used to be just a few decades ago due to overfishing, but still well worth your time.

Ponds near the Currituck Beach Lighthouse are a good place to start if you’re a fan of Largemouth. More experienced anglers reading this article will know not to underestimate these iconic creatures – they’re smarter than they let on. You should always bring different jigs, spinnerbaits, and crankbaits in case your target figures out what you’re trying to do and starts avoiding your lure.


A happy angler on a boat holds a big Catfish he recently caught near Corolla, NC.

Another big freshwater name, Catfish are also a big deal in these parts. To be more specific, we’re talking Blue, Channel, and Flathead Catfish. They’re typically found a bit deeper into the backcountry, so you may need to spend some time cruising around until you run into one of these big boys. Ideally, you’ll have a local guide show you around, especially if it’s your first time visiting.

While Bass are better suited for the game fishing-oriented angler, Catfish are the perfect target for all of you looking for a tasty treat at the end of a long day. Local anglers usually head after them in the early morning, but you could also choose to make it a night trip if you want something more exciting. You won’t be disappointed either way!


Four anglers holding the Redfish they recently caught on a fishing trip out of Corolla, NC.

Turning our attention to Corolla’s saltwater species, what better place to start than with the beloved Redfish. You’ll also hear them called “Channel Bass”, but don’t let it confuse you. These fish belong to the Drum family but, in this case, they do share the same stretches of the Currituck Sound with actual Bass.

Usually found cruising the beaches and sounds, you can count on Redfish to be spoiling for a fight at any time of year. Fly anglers especially have a lot of fun casting to Reds when they’re shuffling in the shallows. Going after big “Bull” Reds will usually take you to deep inlets where you should be armed with heavier tackle and a bunch of live bait. Reeling in one of those monsters will be quite a workout, but you’ll have a proper trophy to show off at the end of it.


An angler holding a Flounder in one hand and a fishing rod in other hand while on a boat.

And where there’s Redfish, there’s usually bound to be Flounder too. These delicious bottom feeders are spread all over the Outer Banks, so it comes as no surprise you’ll also find them in Corolla. The two main species commonly caught around here are Summer and Southern Flounder.

When Flounder fishing, the most important thing to learn is to tell the difference between the fish biting and how it feels to have the rig dragging along the bottom. The usual technique is to drag a jig and occasionally give it a good twitch. That will hopefully entice the nearby Flounder into jumping on it. With enough persistence you’ll get a catch sooner or later, making it a good option for anglers who are just starting out.


An angler dragging in a leaping Tuna on a fishing trip in the Gulf Stream.

But what if these inshore and backcountry species just aren’t cutting it? What if you want bigger fish to fry? Then you should hop and a boat and head straight out to the Gulf Stream to get yourself some Tuna. Expect as many as four different species of Tuna you can have a chance of butting heads with. These are Yellowfin, Bluefin, Blackfin, and Bigeye Tuna.

The most common of the bunch are Yellowfin by far. You can troll for them at pretty much any time of year, with summer and early fall being the most productive periods. The same goes for Bigeye, especially come summer. Bluefin, on the other hand, mostly make themselves known during late winter and early spring. Last, but not least, Blackfins come in two main waves during the year – once in spring and once in fall.

And More!

A young girl in a safety vest holds up a crab she just caught somewhere near Corolla, NC.

These five species we talked about are only the tip of the iceberg. Stick around and you’ll find that these brackish waters also have plenty of Striped Bass, Spanish Mackerel, Tarpon, Seatrout, and more. As for the Gulf Stream, Tuna isn’t the only big fish in the sea. Get ready for the fight of your life as you target monsters such as Marlin, Sailfish, and Wahoo.

While not fishing in the classical sense of the word, crabbing is a popular family activity during the summer. Historic Corolla Park is one of the top crabbing spots in town, but far from the only one. If you’re renting a waterfront vacation home, you can literally go crabbing in your own backyard!

How to Go Fishing in Corolla, NC

Now that you know which species you’re dealing with, let’s discuss the different ways you can approach your upcoming fishing trip in Corolla. While there’s always the simple and straightforward option of hitting the surf with your trusty rod and reel, it doesn’t have to be the only choice. Depending on what you want to catch, you may need a good boat to take you to the fishing grounds.

Surf and Kayak Fishing

A surf fishing angler holds a Flounder with her right hand and a fishing rod with her left.

With a long shoreline on two sides, Corolla seems to be tailor-made for quality surf fishing. Many anglers agree, so expect to see a real crowd of fishers in late summer when Spanish Mackerel and Tarpon come out to play. Some of the most visited spots for shore fishing in the area are Poyner’s Road Park in Moyock, Veterans’ Memorial Park in Coinjock, and Maple Park in Maple.

On the other hand, kayaking in Corolla is big with both anglers and regular tourists alike. Fortunately, the Currituck Sound is big enough for everyone, so you shouldn’t worry about colliding with other yakkers any time soon. Fishing from a kayak allows you to be much more mobile than when fishing from shore. This can come in handy when you’re going after bigger fish that like to hide away in the deeper parts of the sound.

Charter Fishing

A charter fishing boat cruising on the water.

But if you really want to make it a memorable experience, your best bet is to book a charter boat. There are a couple of reasons for doing this. First, you’ll have an experienced fishing guide at your disposal. They can tell you exactly where to find the fish you’re looking for at the time you’re looking for them. They’ll also know all the local rules and regulations, allowing you to fully focus on the fishing itself.

And crucially, it’s the only way you can head out into the Gulf Stream without bringing your own boat – if you have one. This is where you want to be if you’re in the market for an adrenaline-pumping day of fishing for Tuna, Billfish, and the likes. It doesn’t really get much better than the Outer Banks for that kind of stuff.

Fishing in Corolla, NC: FAQs

Do I need a license to fish in Corolla, NC?
  • Yes. Anglers over the age of 16 need to have a valid Coastal License unless you’re fishing with a licensed charter. You can check out our post about NC Fishing Licenses for everything you need to know.
What is the best month to go fishing in Corolla, NC?
  • Like in other parts of the Outer Banks, the best time for casting a line is around September and October. These months allow for the biggest variety in terms of species, while also having the most pleasant weather for being outdoors.

Corolla, NC: Two Coastlines, Double the Fun!

An aerial view of Corolla, NC, with the sound on the right-hand side of the image, and the Atlantic Ocean on the left.

Corolla has been noted for its great fishing from as early as the first settlers. It’s still going strong to this day, as you can see from everything we covered in this article. And it’s not just fishing, either. Things like crabbing, birdwatching, kiteboarding, parasailing, and so much more make this little town an ideal vacation spot with something for everyone. Come on down and see for yourself!

Have you ever gone fishing in Corolla, NC? How did it go? Any stories to share or catches to brag about? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

The post Fishing in Corolla, NC: The Complete Guide appeared first on FishingBooker Blog.

By: Vuk
Title: Fishing in Corolla, NC: The Complete Guide
Sourced From: fishingbooker.com/blog/fishing-in-corolla-nc/
Published Date: Sun, 05 Mar 2023 14:00:00 +0000

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