All You Need for an Awesome Day of Surf Fishing


All You Need for an Awesome Day of Surf Fishing


From beginners to experts, surf fishing provides a day of fun for everyone paired with the anticipation of what you might reel in during your time on the shoreline. Topsail Island, North Carolina is known for its excellent and abundant fishing opportunities—surf fishing included. Have you wanted to try surf fishing but you're not quite sure how to get started? Well, we've got you covered. Check out these expert tips on surf fishing basics and other helpful resources to ensure you have a successful surf fishing adventure during your Topsail, NC beach vacation. It all starts with being on the beach as often as you can, and the best way to do that is by booking an oceanfront Topsail Island rental. Read on to learn more!


1. Know the surf fishing basics.

We really love the quick, concise material covered in this video by takemefishing.org. It gives you a helpful overview of what you need to know before starting your surf fishing adventure on Topsail Island (or anywhere). 

Take a few minutes to watch this and get yourself familiar with what you need, when the best times to surf fish are, and what equipment you'll need to get started. 

This video gives you 8 surf fishing tips to get you ready for the day and help you know what to expect. Surf fishing is a great activity for the whole family, and we really hope you try it during your next Topsail beach vacation.

2. Make sure you have these surf fishing necessities.

In surf fishing there is minimal expense, no boat to drag around, easy access to good conditions, and plenty of fun and action. Every angler is different and may have specific preferences when embarking on a surf fishing endeavor, but there are some common surf fishing necessities that are generally used by anglers of all skill levels. Here's the short list. 

Saltwater Fishing License

Yes, you need an NC saltwater fishing license for surf fishing, so this is your first step. Once you have it, you're good to go! You can buy it locally at an outfitter like East Coast Sports, or you can purchase one online.

Surf Fishing Rod & Reel

Get started with just a few surf fishing rigs, some natural saltwater bait, and a surf rod and reel combo. You can use lighter gear and shorter rods for smaller species or heavier gear and a longer rod for larger species.

Bait & Tackle

Use natural baits like squid, shrimp, or mullet to start out with. They are effective and work well for several different species of fish. When it comes to surf fishing tackle, here are a few recommendations for you.


Best Surf Fishing Times

Saltwater tides and weather play a major role in determining the best times to surf fish. The optimal time to surf fish is when the tide is either rising or falling. During summer, try fishing in the early morning or late afternoon. 

Bait Bucket & Cooler

You want to keep your bait cool and your catches, too! Keep your baits out of the sun by placing them inside of a cooler or bait bucket. The beach sun can get really hot really fast, so don't let it ruin your bait or your catch. 

Surf Fishing Extras

Other helpful surf fishing items include a standard fishing kit, a cart to move everything in, rod holding spikes, and something to sit on. Sunscreen is a necessity, and polarized sunglasses will help you see what's in the water. 

3. Watch Topsail Island surf fishing tips.

If you would like some bonus surf fishing tips and tricks, as well as some beautiful Topsail Island scenery, this video shows you some typical catch you might reel in on any given day.

Sometimes just watching someone else out there doing it will be enough to inspire confidence that you can get out there, too! 

Don't forget that there are plenty of local experts you can chat with including the staff at Topsail bait and tackle shops, sports outfitters, and yes, the local anglers who are out there doing the same thing as you. 

Don't be afraid to ask questions, strike up a conversation, or just sit back and observe for a little while. 

4. Book an oceanfront Topsail Island rental for the best surf fishing access.

One of the best surf fishing tips we can give you is to get out there on the beach as often as you can. Up your odds of catching the big one! It just makes sense to choose an oceanfront rental on Topsail Island for quick and easy access to the beach anytime you want it. You don't have to worry about planning to be at the right place at the right tide when you're already there. Peruse these oceanfront Topsail Island vacation rentals and find the perfect one for you and your family. 

You can read more about Topsail fishing in all its forms right here. Happy Surf Fishing!


All You Need for an Awesome Day of Surf Fishing

are you ready to try your hand at some topsail island surf fishing?

Just do it!



Comment on this post!