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Jan 23rd, 2013
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shark in the surf #13113997 04/04/19 11:23 PM
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AvidOutdoors7 Offline OP
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I booked a trip to Port Aransas in mid June. I want to catch my first shark. I talked to a guy and get a good rod/reel/line/etc. and now I just need to know the best way to go about it with rigs, bait, what to look for to locate them, etc. I'm looking for shark in the 4-6ft range, but would be fine with a bunch of smaller ones. If anyone has any tips on how to catch these fish from the surf I would love to hear it!


just an avid outdoorsman
Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13114266 04/05/19 05:05 AM
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Ocelot Offline
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Catch some mullet with cast net or catch whiting on shrimp or squid.
Depending on size, gut it or cut in half to use as bait.
Look for a place where there is some current, you will see water flowing back out to see and waves missing or not quite as high here.
Put on large offset circle hook with a stinger hook. I believe I saw something new this year about not targeting sharks with stainless steel hooks. Look at the new regulations this year to see all the restrictions for shark fishing.
Put on a 2-6 oz weight with hook on a line coming off the main line 2-3 ft above. Use one of the weights with the wires coming out so you can dig it into the sand.
Potentially put another hook up about 2 foot baited same way. This depends on if your rod is long enough to allow you to still cast while in chest deep water.
Use wire leader to the hooks.
Run heavy line from the weight about 4-5 ft up then tie onto 30+ pound line.
Walk out in the surf about as far as you can go and throw as far as you can, Try to get beyond or just in front of where waves are breaking.
Walk back to beach letting line out and place rod into pvc hammered into the beach.
If you can do this on a day when the sea is flat and or the clear water has come up to the beach, you will have no problems and will probably catch some before getting back to the beach.
When I hook into something and am out a ways, I always start shuffling back to shore as I want to be on the beach or shallow water in case I have something large on there. Keep line tight but not really bringing in towards me.
It is funny, sometimes the shark will just be cruising in parallel to me and you will see fish start jumping out of the water as it goes by.

This has been a successful strategy for me on several trips.


Get in the best shape you can. If there are waves it will wear you out quickly.
Wear a pfd and hopefully have a partner with you.
Do not have any bait or cut fish on or close to your body.
Around sunrise/sunset I do not go out more than waist deep and that is probably not real safe.
I also never go out beyond where I can stand even if the next bar out looks very tempting.
Be very cautious of currents and tides expecially in the surf

Best of luck.

Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13116758 04/07/19 09:31 PM
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Sweet! Will try! Thank you.


just an avid outdoorsman
Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13118633 04/09/19 05:02 PM
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Originally Posted by AvidOutdoors7
I booked a trip to Port Aransas in mid June. I want to catch my first shark. I talked to a guy and get a good rod/reel/line/etc. and now I just need to know the best way to go about it with rigs, bait, what to look for to locate them, etc. I'm looking for shark in the 4-6ft range, but would be fine with a bunch of smaller ones. If anyone has any tips on how to catch these fish from the surf I would love to hear it!


"good rod/reel/line/etc." ~ I'd really like to hear more about which rod and reel you're planning to use for shark fishing. I'm just now getting into it as well, and I've been told so many different setups are better than others, which has left me confused and afraid to buy anything that might not make the cut.


"Well hey, hey, hey I'll be screwed
Blued and tatooed
Looks like I got me one of them
Fish on. Fish on" ~ Primus
Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13118736 04/09/19 07:07 PM
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Ladyfish, stingray, and big jacks make the best shark baits. For sharks i stick to 6oz and bait or 8oz and bait. Spider weights help peg your sinker and prevents it from rolling around in the sand.. If you have a kayak it helps to get the bait out where it needs to be. Casting 8 and bait sucks if you have to constantly check your bait. Stay alway of small hooks and little baits to avoid this. Ive thrown whole 12" horse mullet that weigh about a lb before. 10/0-16/0 circle hooks with 200lb malin wire or steel leader off of a 300-400lb swivel.

Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13118813 04/09/19 08:38 PM
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I have caught a 6.5 foot hammerhead shark and plenty of black tips off the Padre seashore with a Abu Garcia 7000C3 and an 8ft medium/heavy rod. Swam my bait out in a blow up raft half way, then casted it out to the clear water. Rode the waves back and waited. Don't need anything fancy unless you plan to go out more consistently. I picked up all my rigs from Roy's Bait & Tackle on the way to PINS. Pick up fresh shrimp and one frozen stingray. Typically would catch all the bait I needed in the mornings with the fresh shrimp. The frozen stingray was my back up just in case I couldn't net or catch anything. PINS was my favorite location back in the day because you could go days without seeing a single person.

Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13119103 04/10/19 02:24 AM
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Ive heard a lot about stingray! I'll have to keep that in mind. If I do not have access to a kayak/raft would I still get out far enough If I wade to 2nd bar and cast as far as I can from there?


just an avid outdoorsman
Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13119107 04/10/19 02:30 AM
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My son and I have caught several sharks in the 3 foot range wading out into the surf and casting as far as possible.

Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13119194 04/10/19 06:54 AM
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I've caught several shovelheads from port A jetty with just cut mullet, pinfish, & menhaden trying to go for bullreds. I've also caught a blacktip @ PINS. I like using 12ft surf rods to keep the line above the breaks. A daiwa df100a spinning reel is a cheap reel that will work. You'll need a lot of capacity. I recommend lots of braid backing then monofilament line on top. Watch out for Portuguese Man o' War & stingrays. Slide your feet when wading out & use a pfd as stated, that's a given. Obviously if the surf is too rough don't it & don't wade within a few miles of a jetty or a pass. I use a technique called bait sliding if I don't want to wade far.

Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13119319 04/10/19 01:30 PM
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Fish finder rig with 8oz spider weight and a stingray/cownose wing for bait on a 18/0 circle.

Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13120065 04/11/19 02:43 AM
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how far would I need to get out if I am wanting to target shark in the 4-6ft range?


just an avid outdoorsman
Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13120254 04/11/19 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by AvidOutdoors7
how far would I need to get out if I am wanting to target shark in the 4-6ft range?


I would try to have bait soaking in each gut. But most of the 4-6ft sharks I have caught came from past the 3rd sand bar(dropping baits with kayak). However several have been caught just past the second bar where you can cast to.

Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13120390 04/11/19 03:23 PM
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As has been mentioned, a spider weight, wire leader and a large circle hook with some type of cut bait. Wade out as far as you can, then cast as far as you can. When fishing the ocean, the hard part is not catching sharks.


The solution to any problem - work, love, money, whatever - is to go fishing, and the worse the problem, the longer the trip should be. --John Gierach

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Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13120485 04/11/19 04:47 PM
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Based on shark biting reports the 4ft+ sharks come into the waist deep water at least during period around sunrise and sunset.

Re: shark in the surf [Re: AvidOutdoors7] #13120512 04/11/19 05:21 PM
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Alright, Ill try to get my yak out there! how will I know when I'm out far enough? or just guess? Good to hear that Its hard not to catch them though! lol


just an avid outdoorsman
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