Port O’Connor TX 7/31/14.

Fish Catching Travel

My friend Chris suggested fishing POC today and I was good with that.  The plan was to head to San Antonio Bay and catch some trout.  It turned out to be a good choice.

Our first stop was a shoreline with a drain coming out of it a couple of miles below Panther Reef.  The sun was just coming up, the wind was blowing, and there was bait.  He fished plastics and I threw plastics and topwater, neither of us with any great success.  I caught a hard head, a croaker, and 1 small trout.  He put 1 small trout in the net.  So after that poor start we headed for Panther Reef.

The wind was blowing out of the south and it was rough, but not enough to muddy the water up much.  We anchored above a cut in the reef and started wading.  Right after we started I put this one in the boat.

006

This ended up being my best trout on a Sea Assassin Chicken on a Chain paddle tail.

I was on the down current side, and Chris started on the up wind side.  Not to long after we started there he got a bite, a big bite.  Right before he got completely spooled he thumbed the spool, and the fish broke off.  He wasn’t real sure what it was, but he said it felt like a bull red.  Interesting considering I got spooled a couple of trips ago.  After that I lost a real nice one picking it out of the net after I unhooked it.  I also had a really big fish of some sort on, but he pulled off.  Before we moved I did put another keeper in the boat.

It slowed down some so we moved way out on the reef, anchored out, and back in we went.  I caught a couple of small ones, and actually got fooled.  They were hitting it after it landed and before it hit bottom.  So out came the topwater, and even though it was rough, I gave it a toss.  On about my second cast I had a really nice trout eat it, but it was rough enough that I did not see it.  Right after I felt him he was gone.  So of course I threw it for another hour and didn’t have a bite.

And like my last 3 trips, the fish were in water over waist deep.  Chris kept heading out and when he got to the color change he got in to them.  He was throwing the 6″ Gambler Flappin’ Shad in what looked to be the Electric Chicken.  It did not take him long to come back to the boat, and this is what he had.

009

The smallest was 18″.

He said he got 4 of them without moving.  The only reason he quit was he had plenty for supper.   So we hopped in the boat and before we left drifted the reef where the clear water met the brown from wind blowing over the reef.  I lost a couple more trout and put one more keeper in the boat.  And before we quit I caught one more small one, and we called it a day.  I can’t remember if Chris caught one on our short drift.

Before I go any further I did want to tell you about a cool happening.  For some reason the Pompano were all over that reef.  How did we know?  They were jumping out of the water, and the boat scared several besides the ones we saw wading.  Now I know squat about them, except they are great to eat, but other than that it was weird.  Maybe they are spawning.  No matter what it was just different.

010

Headed for the frying pan.

The last few times I have gone it has not been any great shakes as to numbers, and it takes some work to wade them up, but when you find them they are nice and fat.  The one thing that has been consistent is they are coming out of more than waist deep water.  And looking back on it, there was one common factor, there is always “an edge” in 3 – 4 foot of water.  First it was a line of floating grass, then where it went from grass to sand, and today it was where the off colored water met the clear.  And one more interesting thing, whether it was the topwater or plastics, more and more it is looking like big is good as far as lure choice.  You might not catch as many, but they are definitely better fish.  And the darker colors seem to be a little better in the plasitics.

Once we got on the reef it was a good bite.  I didn’t fish all that well, but we had the bites, and Chris got his fish dinner.  It was good to fish with him again and there is a little story I want to tell you, but it will have to wait until tomorrow.  It is getting late but I did want to get the report up before some of you head out fishing this weekend.  So stop in tomorrow, I have some more pictures and a couple of things to talk about.  Thanks for reading my stuff.

To be continued———-

Good Luck and Tight Lines

 

 

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment

Coleto Creek 7/28/14.

Fish Catching Travel

I admit it, I wussed out today.  It was so hot and humid yesterday when I did a little work outside, and the forecast for Monday was a heat advisory and 100 degrees, so I decided to skip the Gulf and hit the lake Monday morning.  It is 30 miles closer, and not near such a hassle when I want to quit early, and today it was on the road to the house by noon.  Nothing like fishing in a blast furnace.

As I am writing this it is set to be 101 again today, with a heat index approaching 110.  That is hot, and can be dangerous.  So I will get a few things done today, then back to the Gulf tomorrow

One thing I wanted to work on  at Coleto was  fishing the frog.  With the grass beginning to mat in some places there is usually a few places that the fish will eat the frog this time of year.   There just has to be some grass somewhere with a bunch of fish on it, but I have not been able to find that one great place.  So the plan was to remedy that.  I started up lake and the second point I fished one just jumped all over it.

001

I thought it was about to be good.

From that point on I stayed with the frog way to long.  Moving from point to point, stopping at the occasional big patch of grass, only one more took a pass at it.  I finally gave up on it and threw the Strike King Swimming Jig and caught one more, though I only fished it for an hour.  The one above tricked me, and I was just convinced that one of those grass patches would hold a wad of them, but it was not to be.

That is one real difference this year since the water come up, they are either not there, or the frog is not the bait of choice.  And to go along with that they are completely off the buzzbait.  Being a power fisherman finesse is not my strong suit, but there has to be a better way.  Sooner or late I will find it.  So after a 2 fish morning, and with it starting to really heat up, I called it a day.

*************************

I read something on the Falcon Lake Tackle website, and if true, it really disturbs me.  According to the website owner, who has at best a contentious relationship with TPWD, apparently TPWD stocked a private lake with bass.  Now if the story is true as far as I am concerned it is improper at best.  Even the TPWD explanation does not make it one bit better.  There is nothing that justifies it.  It is our tax and license dollars and I would prefer they do not subsidize a private property owner for any reason.  Now if it is open for real folks to fish, no problem,  but do not bet on that one.  You are not invited.  So I want you to click on the link below and read what he has to say.

http://www.tackleandrods.com/lake/flash.htm     (scroll down and read July 21 post)

To go along with that, most state commissioners are appointed by a state’s governor.  And many state commissions are made up of rich folks, often political allies of the state’s governor.  Most of them hunt and fish in places the regular working man can only dream about.  And that might include a lake full of big bass paid for by your tax dollars.  You think?  If my perception is wrong please let me know.

****************************

Fishing can be/is an expensive sport.  It seems that as our boats and equipment become increasingly more high tech it just increases the potential for something to go wrong.  My friend Chris, who broke the axle on his trailer is fixing it, and the trailer will be back in action today.  That is the good news.

trailer

The bad news is when he got the boat off the trailer and inspected the bottom he found a bad spot in the hull of his Dargel.  While it is bad news, it is not as bad as it could be if he was running across the bay and the hull came apart.  He thinks it is still solid, so we will see what has to be done.  If it needs repair it will be very interesting to see how Dargel handles this.  I think back to my buddy Aaron’s hull coming apart and how Skeeter built him a brand new hull.  That is how a quality boat company handles something like that.  As long as there is no angler error quality companies stand behind their boats.  So stay tuned on this one.

***************************

I heard from Faye who is going to be down to POC for a couple of days this week.  The fishing should be great, and since I know you all like to fish live bait, I believe I would buy a few croakers and soak them on deep shell.  And if the wind is right, there are some fish being caught in the surf.  So good luck and let me know how it comes out.  I will be out there somewhere, depending on the wind.

***********************

Steve dropped me a note telling me how much he liked my wading harness.  Well Steve, I love it.   The harness is a Wade Right by Coastal Fishing Gear, and it is plain and simple the bomb.  With a rod holder in the front for holding the rod while tying on baits, landing fish, etc., it is as functional a piece of fishing equipment as I have ever owned.  It keeps the rod up and out of the water while you do whatever.  Also there are multiple clipping points, and I love the small tackle box that clips on the belt high up on your chest, no more dunked baits or tackle boxes.  And the rod tube on the back of the belt let you carry a spare rod, and it just won’t fall out.  Having the extra rod saves trips to the boat, and still having a rod tube to set the rod in while you do stuff is great.  Seriously folks, this is a great piece of equipment.  I have written about it in the past, following buying one at the Houston Boat Show.  And after using it I bought my brother one.   And to make it even better the folks who own the company are nice folks.  So check out their website, you can’t go wrong.

http://www.coastalfishinggear.com/osfm_wade_right.php

************************

 As I finish this it is Tuesday morning and we are forecast to be 101 degrees with a heat index of up to 110.  That is approaching the danger zone for outdoor activity.  So if you are out in it drink water, and lots of it.  I am going to get a few things done today, tomorrow as long as it is not going to hit over 100 it will be back to the Gulf.  The Grimes article in the Victoria Advocate confirms what I found, the fish are deeper, either on deep shell or drops.  Topwaters are accounting for some good fish, the winds have calmed some, and the fish are biting.  As far as where I hit tomorrow, that may be decided as I pull out of the driveway.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment

Indianola 7/25/14.

Fish Catching Travel

Having a good day on the flat above the old Coast Guard Station last trip out of POC made today’s choice easy.  Last time I fished the Powderhorn Ranch shoreline I did not even have a bite, so it was time to remedy that poor showing.  The plan was to stay put and work it out, like I did last time.  I paid the fee at the marina and headed down the shoreline.  I stopped about halfway towards the Ranch dock and idled in to about 2 feet.

When I jumped in it was about 8, the wind was light, and the tide was coming up.  After catching some nice ones on the topwater last time I started with it.  Not even one made a pass at it until I was in waist deep water throwing out.  The first one missed it, but this one got it.

004

The nicest trout I have caught in a while.

This fish hit it a couple of times so I finally stopped it and she smoked it about 15 feet in front of me.  After that 1 more keeper smashed it, but other than that the topwater bite was over.  By then I had fished from knee-deep to over waist deep, and the only bites were in the 3 – 4 deep water.  Where the flat drops on that shoreline is about 3 foot give or take, and it is where the grass ends, and just like the last trip they were on the edge.  With the sun out, the wind beginning to blow, and topwater not producing any more bites, it was time for plastics.

Again a 1/16 ounce jig head and a 4″Chicken on a Chain paddle tail with the chartreuse tail.  They only way I could catch them was to hop if up off the bottom.

010

This picture does not do this one justice, she was a fatty.

I put a couple of more in the net, and then with the tide up I headed to the actual shoreline looking for some redfish.  That is actually quite a wade from 4 foot deep to the bank.  There was some bait on the bank, I worked it over good, but never did have a bite from a red on either plastics or topwater.  In fact, I only saw one redfish wading that really shallow water.   So to finish the morning it was back out to the deeper water.

With the tide full high and the fishing slowing down, it was time to head to the deeper edge to throw that plastic at the deepest grass patches I could see.  I probably put another 5 or 6 trout in the net, all on that plastic.  About 1 the wind came up and started blowing right on the shoreline and I called it a day.  While the bite was slow it was consistent.  The final count for the morning was 11 or 12, and of that probably 5 made it, 3 or 4 of them nice ones, so not a bad morning while only burning 1 gallon of gas.

This is the second trip in a row where the plan was to go to an area and move as little as possible, stay in the water, and work the area over until I found them.  It has actually worked, and I have not fished out of the boat the last 4 trips.  In fact the fish were about the same depth and location on the Ranch shoreline as they were the other day at POC.  Today once they quit biting they nosed up in the grass and hopping that plastic through it triggered the occasional strike.  And the fish were a nicer average, and I love releasing good ones.  I can only imagine what the guys who fish croaker are catching, the better fish are in that little deeper water and it would be a killing to fish that same type of place with croaker.

Now that the weather has settled down the bay fishing is getting more consistent, though the reports are still spotty.  It has me wanting to keep at it, and I intend to.  So where to next?  Not sure, but it will be a different place next time.  And I think the plan will stay the same, pick a good likely area and make a stand.

**********************

The Shoedog has not bee able to fish any since we got back from Canada.  He has been on the run and now he has his grandson Nolan at his house in College Station.  And with a pond and a lake on the property I am sure they will catch some fish.  In fact here is Nolan with a nice one.

nolan

Good job Nolan!  I am not sure who was prouder, Nolan or Grandpa.

The Shoedog retired this January and now with the grandson here for a week he can fish up a storm.  And Shoedog, there is schooling activity on Fayette early, if you think he can take the ride.  Either way have a good week and then come on down for some trout fishing, I might even have it down by then.

*************************

J & J Bait and Tackle

For a while now I have been meaning to stop at the tackle store on Magnolia Beach.  Going to Indianola without driving down beach drive I do not usually go past it, so I made it a point to stop after I finished fishing.  And I was pleasantly surprised.

Folks it is a really nice store, that has a few groceries, beer, smokes, picnic supplies, along with other stuff.  But what it really has is tackle, good stuff, and frozen and dead bait.  They are also a top shelf Shimano dealer.  Selling not only reels but rods, and even better, they do cleaning and repair of both.  And if they have the parts they say they can often do a one day turn around, which is awesome.  And to top it off, they are open 7 days a week from 6:30 in the morning until 10 pm weekdays, and until 11 on the weekends.

It was nice to meet the owners, they are good folks, so if you get down to Indianola please stop in and say hi.  I know I have some reel cleaning that needs doing so I will give them a try.  Plus it makes for a good excuse to fish the Powderhorn.  Their phone number is 361/552-2724.

*********************

 Not much else to say today, except now is the time.  The bay fishing is good and the weather has been cooperating.  Try to be nice out there, there is room for all of us.  I will now be waiting with bated breath for the weekend reports.  So if you caught some let me know.  I will share or not, I just like to hear how you all are doing, so drop me a line.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment

Random Ramblings 7/24/14.

Fish Catching Travel

After thinking about it I have to come to a conclusion as to what the big topwater thing was all about yesterday.  First, I thought maybe it was the time of the tide or time of day, but that was not it.  It was that once I started throwing a bigger bait, I started catching keeper fish.  Until I made that switch it was good fishing as far as numbers went, but the size was lacking.  There were so many small trout there that they were getting to the plastics before the bigger ones.  So tossing a topwater the size of a bigger mullet really paid off and separated the wheat from the chaff.

001

 The KVD Sexy Dog with a reel for reference.

I must admit I had not thrown the 3 hook version yet, though I do throw the smaller 2 hooker quite often.  These baits “walk the dog” easily, notice on the picture above the mouth area is flat and causes a little splash to go along with the side to side action.  And the bait itself is not heavy like some of the other topwaters so it has a livelier action with less work.  There are times when they want that bigger bait, and as the baitfish and mullet grow so does the size of their supper.  Something to think about.

******************

It is so easy to forget that not everyone who reads this stuff knows exactly what, or where, some of these places are we talk about.  So when Joe sent me a comment asking what is POC it reminded me that POC is not the be all, end all, of saltwater fishing, and not everyone knows what, or where, it is.  Well Joe, POC is Port O’Connor TX and it is on the coast near Seadrift TX, about an hour north of Rockport.  It has access to many bays and is a favorite of lots of saltwater fishermen on the coast.  So thanks for reminding me to not assume everyone knows what I am talking about.  And good luck on your Rockport trip, let us know how you do.

******************

I also heard from Rick who is coming down to fish Coleto this weekend.  His question was are there any good tackle shops around the lake?  Sorry about that Rick, Victoria has 4 places to buy tackle, none of them close to the lake.  Academy has the biggest selection of freshwater, actually a good selection of freshwater baits, but the Tackle Box on Ben Jordan is the only real “tackle store” in our area.  It is primarily a saltwater shop, but with the works as far as rods and reels, reel repair, waders, and the rest of it.  Victoria All-Sports also has some tackle, and of course Wal-Mart.   Good luck this weekend and let me know how it goes.

*******************

This may be a little off topic but could not pass without comment.  My lovely wife suggested maybe later in the week we drive down to Eagle Pass on the border and see what that casino was like.  Sounded like a good suggestion to me.  I love that area and always enjoy the drive to fish Amistad so it seemed like it was a done deal.  Then as she was off Tuesday we headed to Cabela’s and then Gruene for a little drive.  When we were in the fly shop in Gruene she found this purse, and as she was looking for one, she bought it.  After we left town she said she spent the casino money on the purse.   I had to laugh, I did not know the choice was Eagle Pass or a purse.  Either way the purse won.  And she also said I should be happy, I got off easy.

*******************

I ran into a friend of mine and her dad in Wal-Mart in the fishing department.  His team caught a $500 redfish in the last tourney they fished this summer.  It came from the Powderhorn.  We both like to fish the same area, an area if I had to go catch a redfish as fast as I could,  would be the back end of the Powderhorn.  If you float shallow and have a trolling motor they are there somewhere – all the time.

*******************

One last note on plastics.  I stopped in Academy and bought a couple of bags of plastics and some jig heads.   It is really interesting how the count differs by company.  One of the colors I bought has 10 per bag, the other 8.  Some of the fancier plastics have as few as 5 per bag.  While occasionally some exact bait is the ticket, most of the time the most important aspect of catching fish is fishing where they are.  There are no magic baits, and fancy paint jobs are just that, fancy paint jobs.  Now as far as jig heads go I actually like the Academy brand.  I generally use plain unpainted heads and the hook size on the 1/16 and 1/8 is perfect.  It amazes me how much jig heads cost these days.  Wish I had not sold my lead pot and molds, it would save some serious jack.

*******************

That is it for today, just a couple of things I was to tired to add to the last post.  Next I think it is back to the Gulf.  I want to throw that big topwater some more in a couple of spots that should be perfect for it.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment

POC 7/23/14.

Fish Catching Travel

I love it when a plan comes together.  The weather looked great, the tide was perfect, and the wind was not blowing.  My last trip to POC did not go as well as I liked, but the more I thought about the flat at the old Coast Guard station it seemed like the place to be.  And I did catch 10 or so last time, but only a couple kept.  So the plan was to stay from the last of the rising through high, and until it started dropping.

I parked the boat not that far from the old ruins and hopped over the side.  For the next hour or so it was good, but none kept.  It was probably around 20, they were really biting on plastics, but the size was not cutting it.  So with some cloud cover I started throwing a small Skitterwalk, and though they were hitting that they were small.  But I did catch a nice Seagull who did not put up that good a fight so he was unhooked no worse for the wear.  So I actually used my head for once and went back to the boat and got the bigger 3 hook KVD topwater in a sexy shad.  At this point the water was just starting to fall.

013

This is the 2 I did manage to land.

I was in less than waist deep and throwing out into about 4, right in the area where the grass ends and the sand pockets begin.  When the reds showed, or I found them, whichever, they were real active.  2 made the net, a couple got off, and 4 or 5 missed it or chased it.  When I was in them they were chasing it right up to me.  An awesome flurry.  When they slowed I just worked the grass edge, and the trout starting eating that topwater.

012

The best of the trout.

As the water fell the trout were right on the edge of the grass where the was a current ripping by.  I caught 3 more keepers, and several that were right on the edge.  It also helped that the cloud cover stayed.  With the rip came the floating grass.  It was in a long line and there were baitfish flipping around in it.  So I worked the edge of that and then I got this guy.

011

This is the biggest Spanish I have caught in a long time.  Reminds me of some of the Florida Spanish.

The bite was off and on, for about 5 hours.  The plan was to work that area over the whole trip.  There just had to be some good fish there, and once I switched to the big topwater it was some good fishin’.  Not to often you get little wind, a light cloud cover, and a perfect tide, but when you do it all comes together.  It is so awesome when they blow up on that topwater, I had not had that good a topwater bite in a while.  I did lose several nice fish, but considering it was topwater it goes with the territory.

Normally I try to avoid the dead fish pictures but my buddy Jeffish’s 96 y/o granddad is here, he loves him some fish, so I took these for him, ergo the dead fish pictures.  I have really tried to keep off the trolling motor and just stick to wading.  So after a couple marginal trips I finally got in to them.  It will be interesting to see if I can duplicate today.  It was probably 2o on plastics and a dozen on topwater, which made for a really great day.  Where next I am not sure, but this has got my saltwater juices flowing.  I have a few other things on my mind, I will get to them tomorrow.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines.

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment

Coleto Creek 7/21/14.

Fish Catching Travel

Funny how life gets in the way of fishing sometimes.  It happened to me the last couple of days.  Sunday I thought I might get out to the Gulf somewhere but I got a call from my buddy Jeffish and it was off to his house to work on his boat.  We have rewired the whole electrical system, including installing a new fuse panel, and the only thing left is getting the motor running properly.  Before it was over we spent the day getting it running, and after a short period of “wtf is the problem here?”, we got the problem diagnosed and hopefully he got the part and all is well.

Monday the president and chief financier of Team Nancy was off work after pulling a week long shift, so to spend a little time with her later in the day I decided to hit Coleto for a quick morning trip.  So it was up early and on the water at daylight.  I headed up lake first but I just can not get it going up there.  Swim bait, swim jig, buzzbait and Senko all hit the water, and other than a couple of weak attempts, I did not even have one good strike.  So with the last couple of trips in mind it was all the way back down lake to clear main lake water.

I missed one on a Strike King Swimming Jig and then finally hooked up.

001

Love that Strike King Swim Jig.

The last couple of trips it has been real main lake banks, with the best being somewhat grass free near the bank with isolated grass patches.  The fish are shallower, at least the few I am catching, than one would think.  I stayed with Swim Jig for an hour or so, and then went back to the Senko style bait.  I am a big fan of watermelon red flake and basically almost all the soft plastics, no matter what the configuration I throw, are in that color.  I did manage to catch a couple with this one being the best of those.

004

Of the 5 I caught, 4 were near, or on a point, of a main lake bank with isolated grass.

The fishing, or maybe it is just the catching, remains spotty for me on Coleto.  Being in the middle of summer that is not that hard to digest, it comes with the territory.  And it was apparent that the water is starting to fall, you could clearly see the wet line, and with the summer heating up and electrical demand peaking, I am sure the lake will continue to drop.

Looking at last year when this happened the fish went to the points, and stayed there until the fall bite started.  It was worms and senko type baits, and the bite was best in the morning, again all normal summer time fishing no matter where you are.  So nothing new or unusual about my last couple of trips to Coleto.  It is tough, you just have to stay with it.  Try some plastics in that watermelon red, it has been the go-to color for me that last couple of summers.

*********************

Tomorrow it is off to the Gulf, I have not even unhooked the boat, it is just a matter of swapping fresh water tackle for the saltwater stuff.  The wind forecast looks great, so instead of sleeping in like the last couple of trips I will get up and be out there at daylight.  I hear the topwater fishing is ok, at least according to the fishing reports, but have not actually talked to anyone who is actually catching trout that way.

Have not heard anything on the boat repair situation.  I am still skeptical that I will see it anytime soon.  There was a hint it would be about 2 weeks, but any of you who have boats know that it sounds good, but rarely works out that way.

So that is it for today.  It will be an early morning tomorrow so I should have a report up tomorrow night.  It should be an interesting day, and as long as I do not dilly dally topwater should get a good work out.  Where is still the question, so after looking at the tide times, and throwing some chicken bones out, that decision will be made later today.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment

Random Ramblings 7/19/14.

Fish Catching Travel

I really got fooled yesterday.  The weather report was for rain and possible thunderstorms, and when I got up there was  a big storm on the radar just south of us and the forecast was it was coming this way.  So all day I kept checking the radar and it was close, and the hourly forecast had the rain chance at 95% at 3:00.  But I kept hoping but finally gave up about 4 of even hitting Coleto Creek.  So it turned out to be a wasted day, especially since we did not get a drop.  It is very irritating when it works out like that.  I should have just put on my big boy pants and taken my chances.  Oh well, if I do that next time it will start pouring right after I get there.

********************

If  you are a hardcore fisherman I can not stress enough how much you need to put a tarpon on your bucket list.  Sometime in the later 80′s or early 90′s I started trying to catch a tarpon all by myself without any help or guidance.  That turned out to be a real project.  I learned real quick, hooking one was often not the problem, putting your hands on one at boat side was another story.  Do not quote me but I believe it was around 15 before I actually landed one.  So when I saw the following link of a guy catching a big tarpon from a paddle board it brought back some great memories, though not as cool as this.

http://www.grindtv.com/outdoor/excursions/post/tarpon-catch-from-paddleboard-verified-in-photos/

 These are some cool pictures and now I am all cranked up about a trip to south Florida next spring.

                           A nice Belize tarpon.

************************

And speaking of the weather forecast it ended up causing Poco Bueno to cancel the offshore part of the weekend’s tournaments.  I imagine some teams wanted to fish, and some didn’t.  I can only imagine how miserable it would be to spend a couple of days offshore in 5 foot seas.

If you have not seen a picture or read anything about our new state record Blue Marlin go to the article link, it is an awesome fish.

http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/article/Massive-blue-marlin-breaks-Texas-record-by-nearly-5619909.php

Having been fortunate enough in my life to actually catch and tag a blue marlin I can only imagine what that was like.  In fact my lovely wife Nancy even put one to boat side with a successful tag and release that day.  To tag 2 marlin in my only day of marlin fishing was real lucky.  But those are the days that fisherman live for, and I am so thankful I got that one done.

 

The deck hand wires my blue off the coast of Puerto Rico.

**********************

 One of the things I hear from folks occasionally is I saw you at the ramp or the store but did not say anything.  Folks, I really like it when people who read my stuff say hi.  Just like when I get comments from my readers, it lets me know you all are out there reading my stuff.

And to go with that I met Jerry (Hope I am right, I am so bad with names.) who lives near Coleto and is a bass fisherman.  He is catching fish on Coleto right now, but I am sworn to secrecy on how he is doing it.  I can tell you one thing, it is no great secret method, and as usual it is nothing more complicated than figuring it out.  I love to get fresh reports on our area, but if you do not want the how and where shared, I do not share them.   So nice chatting with you Jerry and hope to see you on Coleto.

The same day another guy, I did not get his name, was there buying baits and said he was catching some really good fish on Texana.  He mentioned that somewhere in the Jungle they caught some up to 5lbs schooling.  Wish I new more about Texana, my few trips there have never gone well.

I also heard from Rick who jokingly calls bass a four letter word.  For all of you who come for the Gulf reports like Rick I promise there will be lots to come in the future.  It would help some if I could get on those trout a little better, but that will take care of itself soon.  As the old saying goes, “The more I fish the luckier I get.” 

And Steve sent me a comment asking me about the first island, which I assume you meant the first chain.  There are several nice reefs and islands in that area that hold trout and reds.  I have had good luck both wading the adjacent reef and drifting the small pass.  Probably the best success I have had there has been in the winter.  So next time you are down give it a try.  And being right next to Shoalwater there is enough water for a day of it.

So if you see me say hi, and feel free to send me a comment if the spirit moves you.  I love hearing from all of you.

********************

And finally we have all of our travel plans set for Costa Rica done and the dates are set.  I am lucky enough to get to fish offshore 2 days for sailfish and 1 day inshore for rooster fish.  It would be nice to knock both of those off my bucket list.  The only fish left on my current list besides those 2 is a big tuna.  Guess it is time to work on the new bucket list depending on how it goes in November.

That is it for today.  I will be back at the coast either in the morning or Monday morning.   So sorry about no fishing report at the end of the week, but I fully intend to cure that little issue asap.  And the countdown begins on the boat repairs.  It has been in the shop a week, so we shall see how long that takes.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment

Keller Bay 7/16/14.

Fish Catching Travel

Today it was off to Keller.  And keeping with the plan, trout were the days quarry.  While Keller is one of my favorite redfish places, I am determined to catch some trout if it kills me, and it just might.

I put in at Olivia around 9 and headed down the north bank, starting about halfway back.  Wading was the plan, and I was going to stick with it.  The first spot is a high looking bank that tails into a big sand point.  After anchoring in 2 foot it was over the side.  There is grass and some shell there, and it is nice to be able to cast into 1 foot or turning around and casting into 4 foot.

I stuck with the Sea Shad in Sexy Shad or Chicken on a Chain on a 1/16th ounce jig head.  It took a little while but I caught one in about 3 foot, so I started concentrating on that.  8 managed to hook themselves, and of those 2 or 3 were close, but no real good ones.

(Insert picture here – a little tough with the camera in the truck.)

I covered a lot of ground, but never did get them cornered.  From there it was to the back.  I wanted to fish a drain near the south side of the duck blind, but there was a boat anchored in it and the guys were wading the bank.  It drains a little off the north side of it so I settled for that.  I actually threw topwater quite a bit there, and did not have a bite on it.  In fact I threw it later  and did not have bite on it then.  Guess I need to start getting an early start instead of sleeping in.  And adding to that the last 2 trips have been right in the middle of the day, looks like I’ll have to re-think this middle of the day thing.

I did catch a couple of small ones on the Sea Shad, and fished from 1 to 3 foot.  There was no bait to speak of so it was time for a change.  With only 2 more little ones to show for that stop I headed back to the north bank and stopped at the long sandy stretch.  There was more bait there, but again it was just 2 little ones.  I did miss a few today, but other than the first bank, there never was a big bite.

I did have one cool thing happen – I got spooled.  It has been a while since one took off and just kept going.  I burned the end of my thumb as the line smoked, and I mean smoked, off.  I watched the spool until it had about 10 wraps on it and then tried to stop whatever it was.  And then the line just broke, it turned out at the hook.  If I were a guessing guy I would say it was big jack.  Keller has some big jacks in it and while fun for a minute, a long tussle with one of those turns into work.

After the sandy bank I headed back to the first place to see if things had picked up.  Unfortunately the wind was starting to blow right on it, and by time I got anchored and in the water it was starting to color.  It only took about a minute to remember last trip, so I only gave it a short try, then called it a day.

What fish I caught were all in the 3 foot area, and I had little success shallow.  I think next it might be Austwell and some San Antonio Bay reef fishing.  I need to change a couple things up and see if I can put a few more fish in the boat.

I never did any redfishing, but I am starting to get a little irritated that I can not catch any more trout than I am.  Sometimes I think I am the worst trout fisherman alive.  Other times it is too easy, and today it was not easy.  I think it was 12, of which maybe 3 would have made it.  So it was deja vu all over again.  There is always tomorrow, the great thing about being a fisherman.

*******************

There was quite a few folks at POC the other day, and then I saw it was Poco Bueno.  So for the next week it will be one busy place as the boys hit the open ocean for marlin.  And I am sure it will be at a fever pitch with the 950+ blue marlin that was just weighed in at Rockport this Sunday  It was the new state record and was caught in a tournament.  Who knows, maybe a grander is on the way.

***********************

I have a couple more things to say but it is late.  Where next I am not sure, but it will be before the weekend.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment

POC 7/14/2014

Fish Catching Travel

It was good to get back to the Gulf.  I have not made it near as much as I would like but I am about to fix that one.  So this morning I headed to POC and was on the water by 9:30.  The barge canal was really off color, and as it turned out until you get farther from Froggie’s it is all off colored.

I started on the south bank of Barroom.  The last couple of years the trout seem to come there for a little while in the summer.  So I hopped over the side, starting in about 2 feet and working out to around 4 feet.  Working the area over pretty good I missed one and finally caught one about 15.  Finally I gave up and so before I left I waded the drain coming from Big Bayou into Barroom.  Though a good redfish spot, I think the tide was a little 2 low because I did not get a bite.

So then it was off to the old Coast Guard station to wade the big flat leading into the J Hook.  The first place was pretty far down that bank, and after wading some of that I finally put a keeper in the boat.

003

Finally put a keeper in the boat.

Unfortunately I did not catch another fish there.  So back in the boat and down to the edge area where the flat drops off near the old station.  That turned out to be a better choice.  It was a pretty good bite and I ended up  catching 11 trout and one rat.  They were right where the flat started falling off from 2 to 3 foot.  I was throwing a Sexy Shad Bass Assassin paddle tail on a 1/8th ounce jig head.

It turned out to be real important to throw against the wind, a hassle, but they wanted it coming with the current and they were right on the little drop.  Of those 2 more were good keepers, and I had enough for a nice fish fry tonight.  From there I went around the corner, not sure what that island is, and waded down the edge trying to fish the drop.  Not even one made a pass at it, so it was one more place before I quit.

The big drain out of Big Bayou near the last island was the next stop.  The water had cleared some, but it still didn’t look to fishy, and it wasn’t.  I waded a good bit of that, but it just wasn’t right.  So at that point I called it a day.  While the number of keepers left something to be desired, at least I caught some fish.  And the water sure is warm, which makes the wading so much nicer.

Wading was the order of the day, and as usual when you found them you caught them.  I do know that next time, which will be soon, keeping clear of the off colored water will be the first order of business.  I did not spend any time on the reds other than the one quick place, but a little spinnerbait fishing is coming.

So there you have it.  Six of one and half dozen of the other.  The fishing is good right now, it is just a matter of fishing lots of places until you find them.  I plan on getting on them, and will hit the Gulf at least 2 more days this week.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment

Coleto Creek 7/9/14.

Fish Catching Travel

The original plan was to hit the Gulf on Tuesday after I got the boat thing squared away.  So Monday while I was waiting to hear from the adjuster I came up with a good idea, lets cut down that tree in the back that is getting near the wires.  It has been on the short list for a while, so Monday was the day.  So what does that have to do with not fishing Tuesday?  Once I cut the dang thing down Monday it took most of Tuesday to clean it all up.  With that project done it was off to Coleto Wednesday.

Of course I went up lake and started throwing buzzbait, and just like last time it was about the same results, if that.  I almost made a mistake and did not take a picture of the first one, which is almost a superstition now.  So after fishing a lot of the way upper end I had one fish to show for it.  The first one was small and came on a buzzbait, but it did not take me long to realize those days are gone until this fall.  It is summer time and I just have to get over it.

From there it was Senko (2 bites), frog (1 bite), spinnerbait on a windy bank (0 bites), and even a couple of flips in heavy cover with out a bite.  The water color up lake is pretty ugly, and the grass continues to grow.  And like last time I even fished a couple of mats with frog and did not get a bite.  That is actually a little puzzling as it will normally work at least some with the mats we have.

So to get to clear water I headed back down, the lake gets clearer as you go down.  So with a case of frustration I went to the one go to bait on Coleto when all else fails, a Strike King Swimming Jig with a Rage Craw trailer.  On the first windy main lake bank I missed one, and the near a small point I finally put another one in the boat.

002

No giant but I will take it right now.

Then it was another main lake bank with a couple of small points.  On the first point a little one jumped it, and over the side he came.  The next little point produced a good bite, and thank goodness I did not miss that one.

004

Again no giant, but at least there may be something to learn here.

What made it interesting was these fish came from less than 2 foot of water, between 11 and noon.  In fact, I was throwing it right on the grassy banks, in the trash if I could.  So the issue is are there more, I only fished that way an hour, or is it just a few scattered here and there and I picked the right bank.  It was simply a matter or reeling it and they were eating it.  Sad to say I missed 3 or 4, they can  be tricky.  One of those “that is  a fish“, right after he lets go.  Most of the fish came between the heavy submersed grass and the bank.

There are still shallow fish, and there will probably be some all summer thanks to the big raise.  The clearer water down lake has been better for me.  Next time I will stick with the Swim Jig and see how it works out, there are tons of places on the main lake that are like the ones that were holding fish today.   Though I do not fish the bass assassin type plastics, it, along with a smaller swim bait, just might be the ticket on those grass edges.  And of course the points are still the best potential holding spot right now.  While I sure would like to catch a few more, today about half of the poor result was me missing them.

************************

I am still having a small case of delayed PTSD after hitting something with the boat.  The adjuster will look at it Friday, and we will go from there.  And not only was the doing a bummer, but not having the flats boat for most of the summer, I can see it coming, has me more worked up than the actual f”p.  Who knows, it may come out a lot better than I think, but we will see.

****************************

Speaking of things happening, after I told you about Chris and his broken axle I got this from Billy -

Just saw your random thoughts post from 7/6. Couldn’t help but to reply. You say that you have never heard of an axle breaking. Not only has that happened to me, it happened to me with my…….Dargel 170 Skout with a Sportsman trailer. A buddy and I were coming back from fishing. Turned into a convenience store parking lot to get gas and heard a thump. Thought maybe we had a blow out. Get out of the truck and, nope, it was the axle. Wasn’t a very fun evening from that point on.

Sorry, also meant to say, I have another connection to this post. My son, wife, and myself just got back from Calcasieu this week as well. Caught a mess of reds and yes, the color on them was absolutely stunning.”

Interesting Chris’s was a Dargel.  I have to ask him if it was a Sportsman trailer.  Things happen with boats and trailers, it just comes with the territory.  But it sure does suck when it happens to you.  Thanks for the comment Billy, I love to know you all are out there and love hearing from you.

************************

And thanks for your kind comments Faye.  I can always count on you to have the right outlook.  When stuff happens you just have to keep on keeping on.  Be sure to let me know right before you come down next time.

Todd, if you have room and are going to wade let me know.  I would like to hook up with you guys this weekend.

**********************

That is it for today.  Tomorrow is my birthday and I plan on spending the day with the lovely wife and a little adult entertainment, then it will back to the fishing grindstone.  So keep stopping in and I will keep trying to catch them.  Thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

Posted in Fish Catching Travel | Leave a comment