Home Drifting Easy - Fishing Tips Flounder fishing from the Shore in Ocean City, MD
Flounder fishing from the Shore in Ocean City, MD

Finally, the flounder fishing has picked up! What should I use and where can I go from the shore in Ocean City, MD?

If you are fishing from the shore, you need to be in the deeper channels. That being said, you can forget the piers in North Ocean City such as 125th St, the Isle of Wight of 62nd St, and the pier behind Convention Hall at 41st Street. You need to be in relatively deep running water, so you need to be fishing from 9th Street Pier to the Inlet.

Ninth Street is a public Pier on the bayside. It’s not very big and quite popular with the locals, so you want to go early and get a fishing spot. The best place on the pier is the very end. Cast diagonally off the left hand corner to reach the best flounder haunts. Use either a high/low flounder rig (a top and bottom type rig) or a single long leadered rig with about a 2-ounce bank sinker. Bait up with live minnows hooked through the lips or frozen shiners hooked through the eyes. You can dress up this bait with a strip of squid. Cast out as far as you can, let it sit for a few minutes, then ever so slowly, bump it back in towards you with your rod tip down.

Flounder are site feeders, so a slightly moving target works well if you are sitting still on the shore.  It’s not necessary to move your rig. You can leave it out there till you feel a bite, but I just think a little motion helps catch flounder.  (If you are fishing in an area with a lot of snags keep your rig still.)

Lately, Gulp four-inch Swimming Mullets have become very popular. To use these, open the package carefully so as not to cut the Zip Lock seal. Slide the Gulp Swimming Mullet all the way on the hook like putting a Grub on a Jig Head. Then add a live minnow, frozen shiner, or strip of squid to the hook as well. We call these combination baits. And boy can they be deadly! When you use Gulp Swimming Mullets it is even more important to keep your bait moving a bit. (Hint: At the end of the day, be sure to take them off your hook and put it back in the package with the Zip Lock sealed. Gulp Lures will turn hard as a rock on your hook when not in the water or in the secret juice in the package.)

Another good place to try flounder fishing is at the bulkhead between 2nd and 4th Streets. This is a really good place to go, but a very hard place to fish. Be sure to carry extra rigs and sinkers to fish here because there are lots of snags. The best time to fish here is either dead low or dead high tide. There is a ledge a few yards out that drops from 15 foot to 40 foot and if you cast out in the current and the tide brings your rig back into that ledge, you’ve lost a rig!  Cast out at slack tide with a 2 to 5-ounce bank sinker that will hold the bottom.  If you can hold your sinker and rig out there in the channel, you can catch some fish. No worries about moving your baits out in the channel. There’s enough movement in the water to do that for you! (Hint: When reeling in to check your bait, keep your rod tip up and reel in fast.)  When the tide runs too hard to hold your sinker out there in the channel flip your rig out just a tiny bit from the bulkhead and fish straight down. Don’t move your rig around too much, or you will get hung up. When the tide gets running hard, the flounder will come close to the bulkhead to feed. It’s still 10-15 foot deep close to the bulkhead and flounder will be moving there.

There’s not much room there, but some anglers go to the end of 6th Street as well. Fish the same way as you would from the Bulkhead at 2nd through 4th Streets.

The Route 50 Bridge is a famous flounder fishing area. You can walk on both sides of the bridge and all and fish either the east or the west channel. There are also some smaller channels in the middle of the bridge to fish when the tide gets cranking. The Bridge can be noisy and you have to watch out for bikes coming back and forth, but it’s still one of my favorite places to fish for flounder.  You can cast and retrieve the single or high/low flounder rigs with a 1 ½ to 3-ounce bank sinker just like you would from 9th Street Pier. Some anglers like to use a spreader rig and a bobber on the Bridge to drift out their baits.  Watch out for boats if you do that. There are some snags on the Bridge too, though not as bad as the Bulkhead area, so be sure to carry extra tackle.

The Oceanic Pier, at the very end of Philadelphia Ave is another good place to fish for flounder from the shore. It’s a free fishing zone as well because the pier has a Pier License! Cast out into the main channel, and slow bring your rig back towards you.  Anglers casting at the end of the pier do best.

The Inlet Wall is a good place to fish for flounder from the shore, but again, there sure can be snags. Fish the slacking tides (dead low or dead high) and fish like you would from the bulkhead at 2nd thru 4th Streets.  Remember, keep your rod tip up and reel in fast when checking your bait.

The Ocean Pier, a pay pier located parallel to the Ocean City Inlet also sees some flounder action. Fish the high tide, cast out, and slowly retrieve in towards you.

Homer Gudelsky Park is a neat place to fish for flounder. Traveling west over the Rt. 50 Bridge, make a left at Golf Course Road next to Royal Farms and make the next immediate left at Old Bridge Road. There’s not much parking here, so go early or get dropped off. There’s a beach and rocks here. Cast out as far as you can into the channel. Either fish close to the rocks, or walk north on the beach and cast from the beach near the entrance to the Fishing Center.  Like everywhere else from shore, there’s some snags here too, so be sure to carry extra tackle. If you have a cast net, this is a good place to carry it. If you can cast net some small live spot or bunker use them for bait.   Wow!  I caught one of the largest flounder ever from the park on a cast netted live bait.!

Good fishing….