Wind: 5-0 mph, shifting from N, E, S.
Tide: Low 10 am, range of ~ 0.6 ft. based on Shell Beach Station
Water Level: normal
Water Temperature: 60 F
Water Clarity: variable found some cleaner water about 2 miles out in the ponds
Water salinity: nada
Weather/sky: mostly clear and sunny
Temperature: ~70 F for high
Moon: ¾ of full, waxing
Solunar period: major period at 10 am
Time on water: slipped the Hobie Outback in about 7 am, out at 4:30 p.m.
Water covered: ~ 6 miles
Other fishers: Jeff W.
Gear: Two #8 fly rods, and bait caster for early blind searching
Lures: A purple/gold spoon fly (barb crimped) and a chartreuse clouser were on the fly rods. An inline spinner was on the casting rod.
Strategy/ patterns: look for trout in a few scour holes I found, and sight cast to reds with spoon fly in the ponds.
I had been watching the forecast and it was shaping up into what would be a special day. Great conditions for standing and flycasting. I ran into a couple of Bayou Coast Kayak Fishing Club guys at the Last Stop while getting ice. It turned out they were heading where I was going to fish, so I gave the newbies a few tips and wished them luck.
I started out slinging the bait caster while the light was low. It is lots of work to blind cast with a fly rod as you go along, so a bait caster does this job better. I did not catch anything so I switched to the fly rod with the clouser when I got to the first spot. The marsh where I fish is shallow, 3 ft or less, but I have found a few spots between points where the narrowing has caused some scouring that produced a deeper hole of 5-6 ft. Specks like to hang around here as bait pushes through. The breeze was blowing from the north to south, but my fly line was being pulled quickly in the opposite direction by a pretty good current. I only made a cast or two until I had a hard strike and got a small bass. Another cast, another strike and almost got a trout. Next cast, rat red. Then I got a nice trout, a smaller trout, and a bunch more rat reds. The action slowed, so I moved down to another scour and caught several more rat reds, but not trout.
I moved out to the ponds where the bigger redfish hang out and switched to the spoon fly. The water was clean and I started searching for reds. I stood up and poled the kayak around to get a better light angle. It was about 9:30 and the sun was getting high enough to sight fish. I saw a nice sized redfish cruising the bank with its back out of the shallow water. I poled up about even to it and a nice 40 ft cast away from it. By the time I could put the stake down, pickup the rod, and strip line off for a cast the fish had moved away and I couldn’t get a cast in front of it. I started to follow the fish and then noticed another one was tailing about 20 ft. right behind me. A quick cast and I got the 24” red and released it for another angler.
It was a crazy day. Lots of redfish spotted, but they were on the move and it was hard to get in front of them. I saw a couple of fish working in a little pocket and took a short video with my phone. Then I cast to them and got a 25” redfish and released it.
I caught 4 more slot reds from 17-26”. The biggest one came right to me along with four of its buddies. They were tailing, slashing at bait, and moving right toward me. I wanted to take a picture but they were coming so quickly that there was no time. I flipped a short 20 ft. cast to them, there was a big swirl, a strip set, and I was hooked up on tough fish that spun me around a half dozen times before I got it to the net. I picked up a nice 28” redfish on the in line spinner bait while blind casting on the way back in.
Other notes: only saw a couple of small flocks of ducks flying early and very few shots fired – not a good hunting day. Saw a small gator, a roseate spoonbill, lots of other birds, and nutria – wildlife was active today.
Summary for the day: a spotted gar, four specks, two bass, a bunch of rat reds and 6 redfish landed on fly and another on the bait caster. I kept the four specks and two of the smaller slot redfish for supper and released the rest.