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Your Cape Fear River Fishing Guide

Your Cape Fear River Fishing Guide

Wilmington is an angler's paradise offering absolute variety, with the vast Cape Fear River waters, easy access to ocean shorelines, enormous lakes and plenty of unexplored creeks. The city is also overflowing with tackle stores, local bait shops and charter businesses, making a fishing adventure to the region a must. Here is your Cape Fear River fishing guide to inspire your next trip.  

Cape Fear River Fishing

The Cape Fear River offers 202 miles of fishing paradise. In the lower regions, the river develops into an estuary, giving you the unique opportunity to catch freshwater and saltwater species. You could reel in redfish, largemouth bass and sheepshead. Where the river mouth hits the ocean, trout, flounder, redfish and sheepshead are often hooked. 

The upper basin of the Cape Fear River is home to several big reservoirs providing access to lakes that are ideal for freshwater fishing. The area has an abundance of bass, catfish, bream and other species. Various freshwater fish are also prevalent in the basin's tributaries and middle and lower sections.

Cape Fear Fishing Spots

There are scores of fishing spots in the area:

  • Randleman Regional Reservoir: Cast your line in an over 3,000-acre reservoir in the upper part of the river basin.
  • Jordan Lake: Take the opportunity to bring your fishing gear to North Carolina's most productive freshwater spot.
  • Shearon Harris Reservoir: This upper basin spot comprises 4,151 acres and supports the best largemouth bass fisheries.
  • Mainstem of the Cape Fear River: Fish the middle and lower parts of the basin, with several boat launch points and charter services.

What Fish Are in the Cape Fear River?

Fishing near Wilmington offers plenty of variety in what you can catch, and it differs depending if you are in the upper or lower regions of the river or the ocean. Cape Fear River fish species include:

  • Croaker
  • Whiting
  • Pompano
  • Bluefish
  • King and Spanish mackerel
  • Red drum
  • Speckled trout
  • Bass
  • Flounder

How to Fish the Cape Fear River

There are various opportunities to fish in the area — make your way to one of the many reservoirs, lakes and tributaries, or cast your line from the piers or shores. Take to the water on one of the Cape Fear's fishing charters or rent a canoe or kayak to reel your day's catch.

Plan Your Fishing Trip and Book Your Stay at Wilmington KOA Holiday

Wilmington KOA Holiday offers avid anglers the opportunity to have an unforgettable fishing adventure at Cape Fear River while staying at a great campground. 

Choose from Camping or Deluxe Cabins, RV Sites or Tent Sites and book your stay today! 

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