Fish Catching Travel
Strike King Lure Company – plain and simple they work.
I wanted to sit down and take care of a couple of comments today before the fishing gets real serious around here.
Rick sent me a question about night fishing for trout and I wanted to further explain what I was wanting to do.
Just curious about your trout night fishing that you mentioned. Were you going to go wading, chunking lures or setting up some lights, or what.
When we fished with Kevin Cochran, one of the most respected big trout guides in the Baffin area a couple of months ago, I was a little surprised that we were starting an hour before daylight. Now I am sure part of that was to beat the crowd, which we did. But the more important point was that big fish bite best in low light conditions, which is almost any big fish of any variety on any water.
We were throwing topwaters and corkie style baits, and though we did not catch a big one while it was still dark, we did catch fish. So with our water warming, and more traffic on the bay, I want to get out during the full moons we will be having this summer and throw topwater. I have caught a few nice big rainbow and brown trout at night on topwater in the White River, so it will be interesting to see if my results will be the same on the bay.
Kevin dropped me line concerning the Powderhorn and bigger boats. (I have edited this one a little to protect the innocent.)
Anywho, I’ve come back to your blogs because I have really been trying hard to pattern the fish as best I can and these blogs are a tremendous help. What I wanted to ask you though was that a friend recently traded in his haynie for a 24 foot El Pescador. I wanted to ask you if that was too much boat to navigate Powderhorn? I know that lake can be sneaky on you if you are unfamiliar. I’m also trying to get him to get a trolling motor on it somehow so we can fish big bayou effectively as you do. Kinda hard to fish all the drains if you have to swim across them HA! Thanks for your time.
First, your comment that my blog helps you catch even another fish is why I keep doing it. It really warms my heart to know that this thing is actually helping real folks catch fish.
Second, the Powderhorn can be tougher to navigate than lots of other places in the bay. Those of you who read my stuff know that I hit a pole of some sort and did some damage to the boat. As far as a bigger boat like the El Pescador, I see folks with larger boats in there all the time. Entering the Powderhorn is not to bad as it has a line of posts that line the huge oyster bar on the right as you enter the Powderhorn. Those posts mark the channel and keeping them on your right entering, and on your left exiting, takes you to good water.
It is important to remember that on your left entering is a big sand bar with grass, which hold fish at times and does get real shallow at low tide. It extends almost all the way to where the posts end on your right. Once you get past that, basically to that old working point that sticks out. In the Powderhorn most of the dead center is 3 -4 foot deep. The area I hit the post is over halfway back in the middle where I think there is an old railroad track. There is an obstruction that has multiple flags on it, and that is where you need extra careful.
Basically I have found that running in the center, and then idling to get to the shorelines is the only way to go. Both sides can be really, really, shallow, and once the tide begins to fall it can get dicey. All that aside it is one of the really good redfish places around. I have not had a report in awhile from there, but with the influx of fresh water who knows how it will fish, at least until things settle down. My best advice, study a good map, stay close to the posts entering and leaving, and take your time, the fish will still be there. Idling as you learn somewhere is never a bad thing. Hope this helps some.
My old buddy Bobby sent me this request.
Dude I need you to show me how to use a jerkbait!! And which one to get.. Gonna try to go to Coleto on Wednesday what should I throw??
First it is a jerkbait, and a jerk like you should instinctively know how to use it. Just kidding! Of course I would suggest the KVD jerkbait, either the 2 or 3 hook works fine. They might be a little more expensive, but they get the job done. Others we use are the Rapala Husky Jerk and the Smithwick Rogue Jr. As far as color, we have had success on lots of different ones, but silver with a black back is the standby.
As far as jerking, the Shoedog has been using it in a quick jerk/jerk – then pause, then jerk – pause, then repeat. We are not moving the bait more than a foot or so, it is more of a twitch. You want that bait to stay in their face. Of course the speed is totally dictated by water temperature, the colder the slower. But the real important thing is to remember exactly how you jerked it when you catch one. Once you get the pattern down it is usually game on. And probably the most important thing I have learned from fishing it for 30 years, it is a clear water bait, period. That flash will call them from a long way in clear water. In fact, during really early spring on the highland lakes of Arkansas once the water temp got to 40 we would throw it super slow, and we could often see fish on the locater in 20 foot of water come up and eat it at boatside.
How long have I been using it? Back in the 70’s we were catching fish on Bull Shoals and Norfork lake on a 3 hook topwater Rebel Minnow. We had some high water one year and a guy who was a good fisherman, Buddy Meadors (Who I am sure has passed now.) decided he wanted to make the bait sink really slow in front of the buck brush. So he got some solder wire, and working it in his bathtub, found out how much solder it took to suspend the bait in front of the bushes. He came back to the dock the first time he tried it with a big bunch of fish, and it was game on for all of us. Now I do not know if he started it, but jerkbaits did not exist then, and we were all doing it ourselves until the companies started making them.
That is why it is so successful on Fayette, and it does have its moments on Coleto, especially post spawn before the grass is way up. We have also had great luck on Amistad with a jerkbait as it is a deep clear lake much like Arkansas. And who could forget the Shoedog catching 3 bass that weighed over 23lbs off one bank on Falcon with the Husky Jerk. So I guess it all boils down to us setting a day this fall and you coming with me to Fayette, who knows, we might even catch a few.
As far as Coleto if I were fishing it Wednesday I would slow roll a white spinnerbait, throw a buzzbait fairly slow, and fish a white bass assassin weedless. And I have still been catching a few on swim jig. The fish are in that shallow stuff, you just have to take it slow and work an area over. Lately what little I have fished there the green grass has been the best, and they have still not vacated the coves. With the big shad spawn, lots of cover and dark water color, there is no reason for them to back way off. Good Luck and let me know how it goes.
It is funny how many people I have run into at Roy’s Bait and tackle in Corpus that read my stuff. I bumped into Nick and his dad there yesterday and they were giving me a hard time about Down South Lures not coming through for some reason. But folks I still use them and recommend them, they work. So I showed them which color I like (watermelon red) and also hooked them up with my favorite Redfish Magic. (a croaker color with a blue tail – RMG18-866)
His dad told me a great story, the kind that keeps me writing. While fishing the Lavaca River I told folks to throw the bait TO the bank and then hop it up and lot it fall down the drop. Apparently one of my readers took it literally. On his first cast he tossed it ON the bank, then hopped it in the water and one ate it. Awesome! It makes me laugh as I write this. It was good to see you guys and shoot the bull.
In one of the coastal fishing magazines the writer was talking about telling folks about a place, and how he had been fishing it without any competition. Then the word got out and folks were all over it. So he recommended thinking about it before you spread the word. I get the occasional comment like that when I mention certain places that some folks would prefer that remain nameless. I understand that, but times have changed. Most of what I have learned about the areas I fish came from map study. I can not emphasis enough how important that is. With great maps and GPS the whole coast is no secret.
The secret is figuring out how to get the job done in spite of the traffic. Todays boats and motors, combined with the electronics, have left no place unturned. You and I are not the first ones to fish there, and we won’t be the last. People who share information should not be criticized for sharing any more than folks who keep their secrets. It is personal choice, this is America, right?
The first time I came across that was in the 80’s when I was guiding and tournament fishing full time when I lived and worked at a boat dock. There was a couple of old guys who drank coffee and hung out at the dock all day who rarely caught fish. So as I was cleaning a massive stringer of big crappies they sauntered over and asked where I caught them. So I told them go down 2 coves on the right where you will see 3 trees down. Off the end of the middle one is a bunch of big crappies. So they hopped in their boat and out they went. An hour later they were back real happy with a few nice ones. And one of them said to me we thought you were lying. How did fishing and fishermen get this way? I made them happy, and guess what, there are probably lots of nice crappies in that same place 30 years later. So no matter how you play it, it sure is nice to help folks catch a few fish.
That’s enough old stories for today, but I am a fisherman and we all like to tell stories. The wife had a couple of days off so we spent the weekend on South Padre. I fished for about an hour on the beach but did not catch a fish. But we had a great time and she got a break before a long stretch in the ER. Now what that means to me is she starts a 2 week stretch, so I am free to act like a guy. Which means tomorrow it is off to the Gulf. The wind is supposed to be 10mph, no rain, almost like living in a parallel universe compared to what we have been having.
So today was all about getting my stuff together, getting the truck serviced, and finishing a few other things so I can fish, and I mean fish. Tomorrow I will be waste deep in the bay. From there who knows, but it will involve water, water, and more water. And I appreciate hearing from each and every one of you, keep those comments coming. Keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.
Good Luck and Tight Lines