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South Carolina

South_Carolina welcome signFishing in South Carolina

If you want to enjoy some world-class saltwater and freshwater fishing, South Carolina is the correct place, with waters brimming with trophy catches.

Hot Spots

a distinctive dividing line across the state marks the saltwater and freshwater fishing differentiation. All the waters of the rivers and their tributaries, streams and estuaries falling seaward of this line are considered as saltwaters, while that falling landward are fresthwaters.


Saltwater fishing in South Carolina is supported mainly by the Little River, the long stretch of Grand Strand and the fisheries in the Charleston and Beaufort counties. Little River gives redfish, trout and flounder, while the Grand Strand offers variety of species, namely red and black drum, sheepshead, flounder, finger mullet, blues and ladyfish, whiting, croakers, Spanish mackerel and so on. In the Charleston and Beaufort County waters trout, tarpon, spottail bass, and flounder and trout.

 Artificial Reefs

A collection of inshore and offshore artificial reefs is a remarkable feature of South Carolina saltwater fishery. The reefs are created by South Carolina Department of Natural Resources using the funds raised from the Saltwater Recreational Fishing License fees. These artificial reefs allow fishing throughout the year. Though the months from May to November offer the peak concentration of fish, winter days too offer some excellent fishing. Bluefish, amberjack, cobia, king mackerel and Spanish mackerel prevail when the temperature of water rises, and can be caught by trolling and drifting bait or artificial lures. During this period, bottom fish like black sea bass, sheepshead, red drum, porgy and black drum too provide fantastic fishing using some bottom rig with cut bait, live bait of squid. And when the temperature drops in winter, you can catch large black sea bass, grouper, drum and sheepshead along the reefs.

Lakes of Greenwood

Lakes of Greenwood


The freshwater fishing places of South Carolina can be divided into the following:

Mountains Area: This contains lakes of Jocassee, Keowee, and Hartwell which give wonderful catches of trout, black bass, largemouth and spotted bass, striped and hybrid bass, catfish, and crappie. For trout, spoons and live shiners or herring work well, while striped and hybrid bass can be caught by trolling lead core line 10-12 colors out and pulling swimbaits, Road Runners and bucktails. For largemouth bass sebilles, spooks, sammys, flukes and big 10-12 inch worms and buzzbaits fished early and late will work best. Catfish can be best caught with a live bream or perch, while crappie with live minnows.

Piedmont Area: This contains lakes of Russell, Thurmond, and Wylie, which give catches of crappie, bream, catfish, largemouth bass, striped and hybrid bass, black bass, and white perch. While crappie can be caught with a slip float rig or a plain minnow behind a split shot, for bream, worms on a split shot rig or under a cork, or micro jigs work well.

Midlands Area: Contains lakes of Greenwood, Wateree, Monticello, and Murray, which give catches of catfish, bream, crappie, largemouth bass, and striped bass. Shrimp and stink baits are best for catfish, while bream can be best caught on crickets and worms under a float on a split shot rig. For crappie minnows and jigs will work well, while topwater lures, crankbaits and bucktails will give you largemouth bass. Striped bass will be best caught with road runners, rebel plugs and grandma lures.

Santee Cooper System: the Rivers Santee and Cooper and the created lakes, Marion and Moultrie give good catches of bream, crappie, largemouth bass and catfish. Breams can be caught on crickets and worms, crappie on minnows, largemouth bass on soft plastics, and catfish on cut perch, herring or shad.

Public Fishing Lakes: SDNR State Lakes Program provides over 1,500 acres of public fishing lands. In the public fishing lakes like Ashwood, Cherokee, George Warren, Edgar Brown, John D. Long, Sunrise, Star Fort, Oliphant and many others, the department stocks loads of largemouth bass, bluegill, shellcracker, and channel catfish for the anglers to enjoy fishing thoroughly

Rivers: South Carolina contains a number of rivers which provide ample fishing opportunities. Some major rivers are Ashley, Santee, Lynches, Congaree, Little Pee Dee, Great Pee Dee, Tyger, Wateree, Combahee, Catawba, Black, Coosawhatchie, Edisto, Saluda, and so on. The SCDNR has undertaken the Scenic River Program under which 10 of these rivers have been developed till now to protect the unique and outstanding resources including plant and animal life, wildlife habitat, wetlands, scenic view, recreation areas, and so on.

Lake of Russell

Lake of Russell

fishingFishing Tackle Loaner Program

South Carolina Fishing Tackle Loaner Program is designed to provide fishing equipment to newbie as well as experienced anglers. You can check it out from several of their sites to borrow rod, reel and tackle box, in short, everything to fish. So also you can get valuable tips on tying knots, rigging a line, choice of bait, and so on.


The South Carolina resident fishing license prices range from $3 to $10, the non-resident license prices are $11 for 7-day freshwater or14-day saltwater fishing license, and $35 for annual saltwater or freshwater fishing.

Isn’t it all exciting? So when are you leaving for fishing in South Carolina?