The Roanoke River is considered by many fishermen to be one of the best fishing destinations anywhere, especially for rockfish (striped bass).
Striped bass may be caught and released May 1 through June 30, but keeping them is limited to March 1 through April 30. The best time for striper fishing on the Roanoke River is from mid-March to early June when water temperatures are between 65-70 degrees Fahrenheit.
The lower Roanoke River is considered to be US Hwy 258 bridge near Scotland Neck to Albemarle Sound, and the upper Roanoke River is considered to be US Hwy 258 bridge upstream near Scotland Neck to Roanoke Rapids Lake dam.
The daily creel limit for striped bass is two fish per angler. The minimum length limit for striped bass is 18 inches, and no striped bass between 22 inches and 27 inches in length may be possessed at any time. Only one striped bass larger than 27 inches may be included in the daily creel limit. (Note: Anglers may keep only 10 shad per day, up to 10 Hickory Shad, but only one American Shad.)
Anglers are required to use a single barbless hook or a lure with a single barbless hook when fishing in the upper Roanoke River from April 1 through June 30. Anglers can make hooks barbless by crimping down the barb. Striped bass anglers are encouraged to use small, non-offset circle hooks, preferably ones with the least amount of distance between the hook point and shank.