By Matt Winter
Capt. John Ward can tell when the giants come cruising at the Charleston Jetties.
You can often find Ward anchored along the south jetty, teaching his clients how to work lures and Carolina rigs along the rocks for smaller redfish, big trout, black drum and sharks. But the Affinity Charters owner always keeps a sharp eye on the big rods off the back of the boat. Those lines are meant for bruisers, the big beasties that prowl through the rips and upwellings.
Sometimes a rod just doubles over, the reel screaming as a 40-plus-inch “breeder red” peels out line.
Other times, Ward catches more subtle clues that something big is about to happen. He might spot the tip of one of his spinning rods bouncing frantically. A bite? Nope. The big live mullet he’s got swimming around behind the boat just caught sight of something big.
“I’m going to move a lot faster if I’ve got a mack truck coming at me,” Ward says. “Same thing. When they’ve got something a thousand times their size coming at them, that bait gets nervous. You’ll see it.” Continue reading