*We pick up from the dock behind Sheffield’s (the Sonoco station on Ocean Isle Beach).
Deposit: Reservations can be made online at this website, or with a phone call or email to Captain Fred (910-612-5343; email@example.com) or Captain Forest (910-473-7219; firstname.lastname@example.org). As your fishing day approaches, Fred or Forest will give you a call within 24 hours of your trip to discuss your trip. Feel free to call us anytime. You may pay by check or cash or credit card or PayPal or Venmo at the end of the trip with NO processing fees and NO fuel surcharges. Tips are appreciated for good service; 20% is customary.
Departure Times: Trips generally depart at 7am on 3, 4, and 5 hr. trips, and 6:30am on 8 hr. and 11 hr. trips unless you book an afternoon trip. All trips are “dock-to-dock” in nature, so a 5 hr. trip normally leaves the dock at 7am and returns to the dock at 12 noon.
Charter Maximums: All rates on all trips are for parties of 1 to 6 customers due to strict USCG rule. The captain and mate do not count against your limit of six. Each trip will be just your folks, no strangers. Even infants (or people not fishing) count as one of the allotted six customers in the eyes of the USCG. We do however offer cruises where we can accommodate up to 12 persons; read about that under Cruises.
What Age is Appropriate: With offshore fishing, generally age 6 and up is fine. On cruises any age is fine. All trips should be considered an outdoor adventure so if it is raining a little we still go fishing, but we avoid thunder and lightning. We also avoid a rough ocean and will cancel the trip if the ocean is expected to be rough. With the inshore 2 hr. and 3 hr. kid’s trips, age 4 and up is fine and possibly even younger.
Cancellation Policy: There is no penalty for cancellations received (and confirmed by Fred or Forest) 5 days prior to the trip. If bad weather is expected, Fred or Forest will call you the evening before your trip to cancel. The morning of your trip, have your cell phone on please, because if the weather is unexpectedly bad, Fred or Forest will call you at 5:30 am to cancel trip prior to 7 am departure. Please know however if you cancel the day before or the day of the trip for any reason then you forfeit your $100 deposit because we most likely have turned down other groups who wanted to go fishing the day you reserved.
What is Included in the Rate: Charter prices include all bait, tackle, ice, NC saltwater fishing licenses, rods & reels, free bottled water, and free soft drinks. We do NOT charge extra for credit card processing, fuel, extra bait or tackle, extra person charges, or any other various miscellaneous fees. A cash tip is appreciated if you have a great time. We also provide free fish cleaning/packing/delivering as part of the trip, and yes the fish are yours to keep if you indeed want to keep the fish. Oftentimes we deliver the cleaned fish to your rental cottage. On the 11 hr. trips (and sometimes 8 hr. trips), we may use a local fish market for cleaning fish since 11 hr. trips especially could end up with a 4 hr. fish cleaning job.
What to Bring: You may bring a cooler with whatever you wish to eat or drink (we provide free bottled water and soft drinks iced down already in our coolers) or use our onboard drink cooler that is large and has enough ice to keep your personal food and drinks cold. Avoid bringing onboard glass bottles or hard liquor for fishing trips; these are okay however on cruises. Canned beer is fine to bring onboard on any Follow Me charter and smoking is allowed too, but NO DOPE, as per NC and USCG law. Dope will result in us by law having to contact the USCG by radio and termination of the trip in accordance and meeting the USCG where they instruct. Do bring a good pair of sunglasses, rub-on sunscreen, and hat. Rub on sunscreen is better to use on a boat since spray-on can make the floor slippery. Please know that Sheffield’s does not open til 8 am year round, so if you need to buy something or use the bathroom it is best to do that before arriving at Sheffield’s for our departure. We provide hand sanitizer onboard for liberal use.
Seasickness: No big deal but there are several over-the-counter seasickness medications along with prescription options if you desire. Three factors in reducing your risk of getting seasick in our opinion are 1) coming well rested, 8 hours of sleep the night before the trip, 2) coming well hydrated, and 3) stay well hydrated during the trip. Some folks find ginger snaps and/or gingerale to be good to hold off seasickness; ginger is an anti-nausea natural ingredient. We have never had someone get seasick on the inshore trips ever. There is virtually no chance of getting sick on trips in our 21 and 27 foot boats inshore.
Bathroom: The BIG 42 Prowler has a nice fully enclosed clean bathroom. Do not worry about “where to go.” There is no bathroom on our 21 ft. or 27 ft. Coastal but we are close enough to Sheffield’s or Inlet View restaurant to scoot over there if someone has to use the bathroom on the kid’s trip.
Music: Both the BIG 42 Prowler and 27 Coastal have a wonderful stereo system. Just ask the captain anytime on the trip to play music and he gladly will accommodate; you can bluetooth your own music to the boat’s system if you would like to no problem.
Sunscreen: Use spray sunscreen before getting on the boat since it can make the deck of the boat slippery. Use rub-on sunscreen on boats is best.
Smoking or Beer: Smoking and beer ARE allowed on our boats anytime no problem at all. We also provide hand sanitizer onboard for liberal use. No glass bottles, no hard liquor on fishing trips, no premixed home drinks allowed on fishing trips but are okay on cruises. NO DOPE on any trip anytime.
Thank you for helping to keep 12 ounce sinkers/weights from constantly hitting the BIG like-new 42 ft. Prowler boat when bottom fishing. Take care.