Looking to make memories with your family while visiting the Outer Banks this week?
If so, check out the Family Fishing program offered every weekday this month at 9 a.m. at Jennette’s Pier on the oceanfront in Nags Head.
Seasoned instructors help make this “Fishing 101” class fun, exciting and informative. Everything you need is included in the $15 fee — fishing license, rod and reel combo, bait, tackle and pier pass for two hours. In past classes recently, they’ve caught blues, flounder, pin fish, pig fish, sea mullet, triggerfish and more.
First off, you may learn how to read the beach and make up your double bottom rig. Then, the instructor teaches the basics of casting under hand off the pier, which is about 22 feet above the sea surface.
After that, just sit back and relax — until that bite comes along. First you’ll feel the nibble, and that’s when you want to set the hook, then the fight is on.
Just reel until you get that fish up and over the handrail and then let it fall to the deck. Our instructor can help you get your catch off the hook. From there, toss it back or find help cleaning it. The pier provides cleaning stations for your use and perhaps you can bring dinner home.
Either way, there’s nothing quite like reeling in a fish while standing in the sun shine with a sea breeze in your face, you’ll be sure to remember this experience for a lifetime.
Although the Outer Banks is not particularly known for whale watching, fortunate sight-seers do occasionally get to see these gentle giants making their journey north or south depending on the time of year.
“We are definitely a great whale watching location,” says Pier Director Mike Remige.
Just the other day, former fishing instructor Ken Partlow of Jarvisburg, had a neat experience where a whale went right by his line, which was out in the ocean at the very end of the 1,000-foot-long pier.
Just imagine what he might have says to his fishing friends if he had hooked it: “It felt like a whale!”
Typically, the encounters aren’t so close. Most people only get to see the whale’s spout way out at sea. There are occasions, however, when these whales — usually humpbacks — do pass close to the pier and can be enjoyed relatively close up and photographed.
Even though whales may be hard to spot, bottlenose dolphin can be seen nearly every day from Jennette’s and it only costs two bucks to walk out on the pier — only one dollar for children.
So, bring your camera and binoculars to check out all of the wildlife. We carry plenty of ice cream and fancy milkshakes in our gift shop to make your trip an extra sweet one.