Finding a shark fishing location isn’t really all that hard. All you need is a little sand and a lot of water. The two most popular states to shark fish in are Florida and Texas since they have loads of both. They also have a lot more sharks along their coasts than other states, but that’s not so say that South Carolina, North Carolina, and all the way up to New Jersey don’t have their share of shark. Florida leads the nation in shark bites because there are more sharks per capita than anywhere else, BUT just remember you’re more likely to get struck by lightning than you are to get bitten by a shark.
As with all types of fishing you really have to go where the shark bait is. I was a weekend shark fisher so I was always having to catch my bait before I actually started fishing for sharks. If it took me 3 hours to catch bait the morale was low. Finding a beach near an inlet or by some sort of structure can do wonders for bait and sharks. Also find a power plant near the water. Power plants tend to cool their reactors with the ocean water and pump the warm water back into the ocean. The outlets are usually several hundred feet offshore but the bait and shark fishing is second to none. That’s why I drove 3 hours to fish in the Jensen Beach area.
One word of caution when it comes to finding your perfect shark fishing location. Fishing for sharks when there are 100 people around is a bad idea. Find a beach that doesn’t get a lot of traffic. If you do have to fish in a very populated area my suggestion would to be fish early in the morning or in the evening when the majority of people have left the water. The first time your line burns a little kid because a 6′ blacktip made a screaming run on you, you’ll thank me. If the shark you hook up with is larger than the tackle you’ll probably end up several hundred yards down the beach.
This next section of the shark fishing guide is really going to be work in progress since I’ve not fished in all the different areas of the country. If you are interested in contributing please contact me.
Florida Shark Fishing
I shark fished for nearly 5 years in the Central Florida area. This would include the Ormond Beach, Daytona Beach, and Cocoa Beach areas. I also checked out Monster Hole at Sebastian Inlet. Occasionally I would drive about 3 hours south to the Jensen Beach / Juno Beach area in hopes to hook up with a bull, tiger, or lemon shark. Unfortunately I wasn’t that lucky. It is also rumored that shark fishing in Key West is some of the best around. I’ve read stories of the great hammerheads tearing a 200lb tarpon to pieces.
If I had to make a suggestion on the best Florida shark fishing location I would recommend Ormond Beach. This beach is great for shark fishing because hardly anyone visits and fisherman own the beach in the morning. This is the beach where I caught my first 6′ blacktip and kayaked through a huge school of tarpon. Canaveral National Seashore (CNS) is also a great option for shark fishing as it is also not very populated. You’ll have to pay a $5 fee to get into the park, but you get restroom facilities. Also make sure you check the space shuttle launch schedule as the park is closed when it’s on the pad. I personally haven’t had much luck here, but have read many fishing reports saying that sharks frequent these waters.
Texas Shark Fishing
This is one of those sections where I could really use some help. What I do know is that the Galveston shark fishing is down right addictive. There are several Texas shark fishing charter captains out there who target sharks. Also the Padre Island National Seashore (PINS) is home of some of the greatest Texas shark fishing I’ve ever seen. Just check out my Best Shark Fishing Picture EVER post to see just exactly what I’m talking about.
Shark Fishing up North
If you fish up north in the Montauk or New Jersey areas and would like to contribute please contact me.
Have a tip or see something I missed? Want to ask a question? Just drop a quick comment below and I get back to you before your next big shark fishing trip.