Chincoteague Island Virginia
Inshore and Offshore Fishing
Chincoteague fishing opportunities cover a broad range of angling styles. You can try fishing the surf, piers, bridges, fly fishing, or fish from a boat. Anglers bring their personal boat, or choose from rentals, flounder charters, or even charter a boat for a day of deep sea fishing.
Surf fishing can be done on nearby Assateague National Seashore, either on foot or with a vehicle. Inshore, anglers can enjoy flounder fishing, or target other inshore fish such as croaker, tautog, black sea bass, bluefish, striped bass, or black drum.
There are hundreds of spots to fish in the ocean off Chincoteague. Fishing varies seasonally and every year is different. Among the many species that may appear are Spanish, king and atlantic mackerel, houndfish, triggerfish, cobia, amberjack, jack crevelle, rudderfish, bluerunners, spadefish, tripletail, seatrout, croakers, flounder, skipjack tuna, false albacore, Atlantic bonita, bluefish, bluefin tuna, yellowfin tuna, marlin, dolphin, sea bass, tautog, red hake, cod, pollock, bergals, stargazers, and others. Local sharks include sharpnose, blacktip, dusky, sandtiger, smoothdog, horndog, hammerhead, brown, blue, mako, tiger and others.
Some of these fish come in to areas such as Blackfish Banks, Winter Quarter Shoal, etc. A good shoal for inshore fishing is the 28 foot lump. This area is 12 miles east of Chincoteague. The bottom rises abruptly from 100 to 28 feet. Schools of small herring or other baitfish are sometimes seen on the surface near the shoal, which attracts bluefish, king mackerel, Spanish mackerel, false albacore, and other species. Small spoons, feathers, and planer rigs can be productive when these species are present.
Just east is the sub wreck which often holds dolphin, skippys, triggers, etc. Another overlooked area is several small shoals just inshore of the Ammo Wreck, where tuna and king mackerel are sometimes found. The Parking Lot is 25 miles off the beach. This area is a large hill just inside the 20 fathom line. Near the center of the Parking Lot is a large wreck. The sunken barge, known locally as the "big steel barge" rises 30 feet or more above the bottom. A few miles south is the Little Hill, located just inside the 20 fathom line. The next popular spot to the south is the Lumpy Bottom.
Other favorite spots include the little 20 fathom finger, 30 fathom hole, 30 fathom lumps and Washington Canyon. Anglers also fish around weedlines, scallop boats, lobster pots, and tide rips.