Don's Tackle Shop Wachapreague Virginia Online Store


(757) 787-3110

20247 Wachapreague Road
Melfa, VA 23410

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P.O. Box 18
Wachapreague, VA 23480

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October 12, 2014

Few flounder catches reported on the seaside. Sea Bass have moved onto inshore wrecks, but season does not reopen until October 18th. The good news is reports of Redfish coming down the beach and a few being taken inside the inlets. Winds have made it almost impossible for offshore runs. Bayside fishing has picked up with good numbers of small speckled trout (undersized) showing up in the creeks with a few decent fish mixed in. Rockfish will be following the bait in and out of the creeks, but when inside can be taken shallow on top water plugs. What sand mullet that are being taken are the jumbo variety.
A good bite on Flounder south of Cape Charles in the 25' range over muscle beds this week, outside Cherrystone. Lots of schoolie Rockfish at the CBBT.
Thanks to Capt Greg Allman for a nice half day trip in miserable weather to the target ships casting for Rockfish and Bluefish. Despite 3-5' seas we managed to put fish in the box, contact him at 757-710-8218 for a great light tackle trip on board a comfortable Regulator boat.

August 24, 2014

Ocean fishing for flounder is still the best bet on seaside. Sea Bass have moved off the inshore wrecks, but weedlines have drifted in and with them some hungry Mahi. Billfishing in the Canyons has heated up and Tuna are scarce.
Inside the inlets, croaker are abundant and Sand Mullet are around in good sizes. The best flounder bite is around the inlets with cooler ocean water coming in triggering ...a bite.
Bayside fishing has Bull Red Drum being the most targeted fish. We have had close to 50 citation releases in the last 10 days. Occahonack and Pungateague Creeks have had a good number of jumbo spot show up this week. Large croakers are from Occahonack reef south to the Rappahannock range tower. Outside the Range tower to the channel markers good numbers of Spanish Mackerel have been taken trolling Clarkspoons.
Speckled Trout numbers are low and Puppy Drum have been almost nonexistent.
The Anglers Club Bay Challenge is coming up on Sept 20th, and it has not been publicized, but all Virginia water is fishable, seaside or bayside. Great prizes are to be handed out.

August 16, 2014

Flounder fishing on the reefs and wrecks off Wachapreague and Chincoteague is still holding the most attention on seaside fishing. Sea Bass are showing up on the same structures, with triggerfish and spadefish also available. Also prowling these areas are cobia and dolphin, keep a casting rod handy to catch one of these as they swim by. Tuna fishing has been sporadic, and the Marlin bite is getting better.
Inside the inlets croaker are king, with many smaller fish the rule. Keeper flounder are found in the inlet areas, with many smallfish mixed in.
Only reports of Redfish and Speckled Trout on the seaside have been on the Machipongo River out of Willis Wharf. Tarpon still around from south end of Hog Island to Fisherman's Island in the backwaters. With the extreme tides from this big moon, fish have dropped into the channels on low tides.
Bayside fishing has croaker and sand mullet taking squid and shrimp. Spanish Mackerel in good numbers have showed from the Range Tower off Silver Beach south to Cape Charles. Best lures for them are gold and silver Clark Spoons trolled behind 4 ounce in line sinkers or #1 planers.
Take note: the Bull Red drum fishing we have is a catch and release fishery. Great numbers of them are available from Nassawadox south to the CBBT. Virginia Marine Police this week have written citations for anglers trying to sneak in Red Drum. The slot size for Red Drum is 18-26" to legally keep.

August 11, 2014

Caution: Wachapreague Channel and Bradford Bay Dredging.

Mariners are advised regarding the potential navigational hazards during this dredging operation while transiting near the dredge and the dredge piping. The Dredge Marion will be working various sections of Wachapreague Channel and Bradford Bay Channel for a 4-6 week period during August –September 2014. During that time, transit by boats will be restricted during dredging operations. The dredge is very large (130’ x 26’) and its dredging apparatus will expand the area the dredge takes up in the channel. Mariners are advised that the Dredge Marion has Right of Way pursuant to the Rules of the Road and that a no wake zone will exist within the construction area; both situations will be monitored by the U.S. Coast Guard.

In addition, there will be discharge piping from the dredge to a disposal site in Bradford Bay that mariners will need to be aware of while navigating around the dredge as well as transiting Bradford Bay. The channel in Bradford Bay is the alternate route to Wachapreague Inlet and is the preferable route to Green and Drawing Channels. Depending upon the contractor’s final routing plan, the dredge discharge pipe will be marked and may cross the channel, submerged in Bradford Bay. If this is the case, boaters should be aware, that during a falling and low tide, there may be boat draft clearance difficulties while going over the submerged piping, so extreme caution is advised, especially for deeper draft boats. The final discharge pipe routing is still to be determined.

Bridge to bridge communications with the dredge and the US Coast Guard will be monitored on VHF Channel 13.

August 8, 2014

Fishing inside the inlets has summer time patterns. Lots of croaker available with many on the small side, squid and shrimp are the best baits. Keeper Flounder have been found around the inlets, best bite the last hour and a half of the incoming tide until the first hour of the outgoing tide.
Tarpon fishing is still strong from Quinby south to Oyster in the channels and backwaters.
Outside the inlets reef fishing off Wachapreague and Chincoteague is still red hot. Limits of flounder abound, many fish to 7 pounds. Also expect some action from spadefish and triggerfish. On the wrecks further out flounder are starting to show, with a scattering of sea bass. Cobia and Mahi can show up anywhere from the reefs out.
On the bayside, big Bull Red Drum are in 25-40' of water from Onancock south to Bayford. Reds and Cobia are showing up over artificial reef structures, sloughs and muscle beds. Anchoring up and fishing cut bunker and spot, or live lining eels and blue crabs will put Reds and Cobia in the boat. Start inside buoy 42A on the muscle beds.
Speckled Trout and Redfish have been hard to find, with few fish reported.

July 31, 2014

Let us clear the air on Summer Flounder fishing in the ocean. This week we called NOAA National Marine Fisheries Comm. The legal size and number limit is the same as whatever state you debarked to fish from. Va ocean flounder limits and sizes are four 16" fish.

July 27, 2014

Seaside fishing in the inlets has seen flounder biting best the last two hours of the incoming tide, and the first hour of the outgoing. After that the water has stained, but sand mullet and croaker can still be taken then. Croakers have moved in in good numbers, with the majority of the fish in the under 10" size, but scatterings of bigger fish to 15" will keep you happy. Shrimp, squid, and fishbites have done the best on the hardheads, and shrimp being the best bait for sand mullet (aka Kingfish or Whiting). Schools of Tarpon are roaming the flats and channels from Oyster north to Wachapreague. Numerous lost fish hook ups have been reported.
Shark fishing has improved inside, but the best news is schools of Redfish spotted this week from Wachapreague south to Willis Wharf.
Ocean reefs and wrecks continue to give up large numbers of flounder to 25". Along with the flounder some Sea Bass, Triggerfish, Spadefish can be taken and good numbers of cobia have been spotted.
Offshore, Yellowfins have been taken on Sam's Hill and in the Washington Canyon. Gaffer Dolphin are scattered everywhere.

Bayside fishing has seen some Redfish from Plantation creek and south. Croakers and sand mullet are showing around creekmouths and on ledges and structure in the bay. Cobia fishing has centered to the CBBT area, where some flounder have been taken around the fourth island.

July 17, 2014

Fishing inside the inlets has been tough the last 10 days, as strong winds have kept water muddied up. Fishing the incoming tides at inlet areas has produced sand mullet, croaker and flounder. One small boat charter managed to hook up three Black Drum and boated two to 30 pounds Sunday, on croaker rigs and squid bait. Shark fishing has been good inside the inlet, as one of the Coast Guard's finest reported last week that an 8' Tiger Shark swam past their dock where they normally swim.
Tarpon schools have been sighted in Oyster and Quinby.
Outside the inlets the reefs are absolutely piled up with flounder to 6 pounds. Eight ounces of weight is required to keep your line as vertical as possible to lessen the number of snags. Bait strips, finger mullet and silversides on rigs can entice these ocean flounder. Also available are Sea Bass, Cobia, triggerfish, spadefish, tautog, bluefish occasional hook ups with red hake, Atlantic cod and Mahi.
Offshore the Lumpy Bottom is producing Mahi and Bluefin Tuna. The Washington Canyon has pilot whale life, with Bigeye and Yellowfin Tuna, and Mahi. The Norfolk Canyon has been producing hook ups with White Marlin. Bottom fishing there is good for jumbo Sea Bass, Tilefish and Grouper.
On the Bayside the Cobia have shrunk in sizes available in our area, larger fish south around Latimer Shoals and the CBBT. Chumming is the best bet to hooking up, followed by sight casting with bucktails and trolling with spoons and eels. The artificial reefs have croaker, sand mullet and occasionally red drum and a lost flounder.
We have got first reports of Spanish Mackerel at the CBBT.
No Redfish to report yet, but when Speckled Trout season opens August 1st, casters will run into some fish and we will keep you updated.

July 11, 2014

Croaker have showed on seaside waters to 15". Flounder still being taken on the incoming tide, on deeper ledges and channels, around the inlet. Best bet is jigging bucktails tipped with silversides and rigged with Gulp. Sand Mullet still being taken around the inlets.
Offshore fishing has picked up, Mahi at the Crotch and anywhere scattered outside the 20 fathom line. Bluefin Tuna showed on Lumpy Bottom today. Bigeye Tuna in the Washington Canyon, with Yellowfin Tuna of various size.
Flounder are piled on the reefs and wrecks, with some scattered Sea Bass.
On the Bayside, Cobia are scattered but around in good numbers. Spot, croaker and Sand Mullet available in creek mouth channels and bottom structure.
Speckled Trout season opens Aug. 1st.

June 20, 2014

Flounder fishing has been holding up good in Wachapreague and Quinby. The incoming tide has produced the best bite, jigging or drifting a flounder rig tipped with a Gulp and a minnow. Sand Mullet are stacked around the inlets, hitting on bloodworms, shrimp and fish bites. Willis Wharf has seen some Redfish and Speckled Trout taken on Mirrorlures, swim baits and peeler crab.
The inshore reefs and a...nd wrecks have seen an influx of flounder and some Sea Bass this week, Capt Gary Rilee on Backwater Adventures had five limits yesterday of flounder to 5 pounds.
Offshore last weekend had a Wachapreague boat land a 200# Bigeye Tuna and two Yellowfins, and others had Yellowfins in the Washington Canyon.
Bayside fishing is Cobia and Spadefish now at its best. The tower off Silver Beach and the Cell below buoy 42 are loaded with spadefish. Cobia are concentrated around the CBBT and off Onancock on the same 10' contour the Big Red Drum were last month. Anchored up with a chum bag and drifting live swimming crabs or eels, and baited up with cut Bunker can catch a Cobia, Rockfish or Red Drum.
Not many people fishing in the creeks, as Rockfish season has closed and Speckled Trout doesn't open till August 1st.

June 13, 2014

Flounder fishing on the Seaside has been best on the incoming tides, with cleaner, cooler ocean water coming in and putting the fish on the feed. Drift and jig deeper cannels and guts. Frozen large silversides have been the best bait on flounder rigs, and Gulp or scented ZMan on your bucktails or jigs. Sand Mullet (aka Whiting or Kingfish) are available in good sizes around the inlets. Size 4 or 6 hooks baited up with shrimp, Gulp, Fishbites and small chunks of cut bait will put fish in your box.
Redfish have showed in the Machipongo River, both Bull Reds and Puppy Drum. Bottom fishing peeler crab or casting plastics, surface plugs and Mirrolures will put fish in the boat, along with some bonus Speckled Trout (Season closed until August 1st). Redfish should already be in the waters of Oyster and Red Bank, and should start showing around Quinby, Wachapreague and Metompkin inlets.
Only some small Sea Bass and very few Flounder showing on the inshore wrecks and reefs. Ocean surface water is in the upper 60's. Offshore action has been north of us.
On the Bayside, Spring Rockfish season closes on the 15th, only a few more days. Speckled Trout, Redfish and Rockfish can be taken in the creeks and around the islands. A few croaker are here, but scattered. Fisherman's Island area has an abundance of Sand Mullet, but Flounder fishing on the Bayside has not materialized. Cobia are red hot from the CBBT north to Onancock. Anchor up in known Cobia areas, hang a bucket of chum overboard, bait up with cut bunker, live swimming eels or crabs and hang on.
I had a good outing this week north of Schooner Bay, one 26" Redfish, a 5# Speckled Trout and Rockfish up to 28" on Mirrolures and topwater plugs.

Stop by and check out our sale rack of rods and combos. We have taken 20% off a number of rods and combos that were already competitively priced. Shimano, Ugly Stick, Penn and Sea Striker and Daiwa are on the rack.

June 4, 2014

Flounder fishing has started into a summertime pattern. Smaller fish on the flats and legal sized fish are holding up in deeper drains and channels. Drifting a flounder rig off the back of the boat while jigging a bucktail tipped with a minnow or Gulp will still put flatties in the boat. Target Drawing and Green Channels or Millstone Creek for your best results. Best colors have been pink/white teaser skirt and trailer or Chartreuse/Green/White color combos on your bucktail.
Rockfish and Black Drum fishing on the ocean side is slowing down, while Red Drum fishing has picked up, as the Rockfish and the Blacks are heading north. Smaller Redfish should be showing up soon, as they have been thick coming up the coast off Virginia Beach.
Offshore fishing is starting up, "Teaser" landed 5 Yellowfin Tuna and "White Bite" had 3 Makos. The inshore wrecks are not producing much yet.
On the Bayside Rockfish up to 30" are available in and at the creek mouths, season stays open until June 16th. The first local water cobia of the season was caught last weekend off Onancock Creek. Spadefish should also be available off the Silver Beach Tower and around the Cell. Some Bull Red Drum are still on the flats around Parkers Island.
The CBBT has had flounder, sheepshead and Black Drum taken, along with Rockfish and a few Gray Trout. Sand mullet are outside and in The Ditch at Fisherman's Island. Croaker have been caught, but scattered and not in any numbers yet.
Eastern Shore Anglers Club hosts it's Kayak and Canoe Rockfish Tournament this Saturday out of Bayford, 10:30 am - 3:30 pm

May 24, 2014

Flounder fishing in Wachapreague continues to be good. Smaller flatties can be taken on the flats, with larger fish in drains, channels and deeper water. Pink, white and chartreuse are your best colors for flounder rigs. Fishing a float on the rig improves your chances on hooking up. Quinby and Folley Creek have also been giving up decent flounder, but fewer numbers.
Capt Gary Rilee on "Backwater Adventures" had a charter this week that boxed 11 big flounder. He can be reached at 804-695-6266 for booking a charter.
Bayside fishing is improving, with redfish, speckled trout and good numbers of Rockfish up to 28" in shallows and on the flats. Big Bull Red Drum are still available in the deeper flats north of Pungateague Creek. Capt BW James is the best around for producing Redfish in the over 50" range, if you would like to book a trip of a lifetime call Capt James at 757-710-2050.

May 15, 2014

Flounder fishing continues to be good out of Wachapreague. Flounder can be found on the flats feeding on bloodworms, as well as the drains and channels. Large Bull Red Drum have been spotted on Swash flats in less than two feet of water. The first croaker of the season was landed this week. Rockfish and Gray Trout can be found in the channels and will take bait or jigged lures. In the surf Rockfish black and red drum are available, best baits are sea clams and peeler crab.
Inside Quinby and Machipongo Inlets black drum are close to the peak of fishing, sea clams are your best bait. Also inside the inlets are schoolie Rockfish and Bluefish.
Bayside fishing improves every day. Black Drum are up the Bay as far as Cape Charles. Rockfish are scattered, with schoolies inside the creek mouths and keeper Rockfish out toward the shipping channels. Bull Red Drum are stacked up on the flats from Onancock Creek to Pungateague Creek. Casting 6"-8" swim baits or hard baits, or trolling with large Tony, Drone or Hopkins spoons will put a citation on the wall, as any of these fish over 26" must be released.
Last weekend Speckled Trout showed on the outside of the islands from Schooner Bay to Saxis(Fish must be released until August 1st).
Today is the last day of Spring Trophy Rockfish season, May 16 regulations change to two fish a day over 28" on the seaside, and two fish a day on Bayside over 18"(only one of which can be over 32").

May 10, 2014

Warmer weather has lit up the fishing. Flounder fishing out of Wachapreague and Quinby has picked up greatly since last weekend. Water temps on the outgoing tides have reached 70 degrees off the flats, and dropping over 10 degrees at the end of the flood tide, shutting down the bite then. Flounder have been moving up on the flats, gorging themselves on bloodworms. Rockfish and Gray Trout are in the deeper channels, hanging around the bait balls.
Black Drum fishing at Quinby and Machipongo Inlets has cranked up, as well as Rockfish off the Barrier Islands. Sea Clams are your best Black Drum bait, and peeler crabs for Rockfish and Red Drum.
Large Bull Red Drum are on the flats off Parkers Island off of Onancock in good numbers. Trolling large spoons in 4-10' of water or casting 6" swim baits is your best bet for a Bull Red.
Results of the Flounder Tournament are:
Capt. Zeds weigh ins
1st place Ron Greaser 7 lb 13 oz
2nd place Greg Stanksy 5 lb 12 oz
3rd place Mitchell Howard 5 lb 9 oz
4th place Cindy Stauffer 5 lb 7 oz
5th place Gene Stalls 5 lb 6 oz
Wachapreague Marina weigh ins
1st place Jim Shuty 7 lb 14 oz
2nd place Gene Stalls 5 lb 8 oz
3rd place Cindy Stauffer 5 lbs 8 oz
4th place Henry Fabricatore 5 lb 7 oz
5th place Jesse Steele 5 lb 5 oz

May 1, 2014

Windy weather has been hampering fishing. Water clarity has remained good despite the winds and heavy rains. My fishing partner Jim Shuty and I have the biggest fish on the board so far, 7 pounds 14 ounces, caught Saturday. Folley Creek has been producing good numbers of fish at markers 80-84, the power lines and inside the inlet on the the north bank. Willis Wharf fishing has picked up. Some flounder at the power lines and some nice gray trout up to five pounds. Look for Redfish down by Virginia Landing. Quinby has given up some nice sized flounder, but you have to search for them. Wachapreague flounder have picked up, with the majority of fish taken on the last two hours of the outgoing tide and the first hour and a half of the incoming. Rockfish and gray trout have been taken the last week, Trophy Rockfish season opens today, with one fish per person over 32" legal, only one gray trout may be kept over 12".
Black Drum are starting to show up on the beaches outside the Barrier Islands. They are taking sea clam baits.
Rockfish are showing on the bayside from Tangier Island to Beach Light.

April 23, 2014

Flounder fishing has been spotty. Water temps have been fluctuating with the passing weather fronts. Wachapreague has had some fat fish in the 18-22" sizes, but they are hard to find and not aggressive. Brown slur weed has been rolling in Burtons Bay and the east side of Swash Bay.
Fish the edges of the flats dropping into deeper water until the flats water warms back up.
Using a floating flounder rig improves your chances in the weed.
Folley Creek and Gargatha have produced some fish, as has the Quinby area. Willis Wharf has surprisingly not produced yet, but Redfish schools have been sighted in the shallows when water has cleared.
Schoolie Rockfish have been caught in Wachapreague and Quinby.
The two flounder tournaments start this Friday and run thru May 4th, so plan on having plenty of company on the water.
WE HAVE A GOOD SUPPLY OF LARGE LIVE MINNOWS, along with all the flounder tackle to make you a winner.

April 6, 2014

Water temps this week were 43-62 degrees. Warmest water was in the Willis Wharf area, but no fish showed there. A few flounder were taken out of Quinby, more out of Wachapreague, but the better bite was out of Folley Creek. Sightings of redfish out of Quinby and Wachapreague, so keep a casting reel handy for the puppy drum schools.


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