Hopedale Lagoon, 10-30-2016

Wind: about 10-12 mph –East/Southeast as the day progressed, wind speed dropped later in the day.

Tide: rising, low was about noon, but wind kept the water in and it pushed up quickly

Water Level: high, above grass line

Water Temperature: 76 F

Water Clarity: about 1-2 feet, found some better water back in marsh

Weather/sky: sunny

Temperature: ~ 85 F for high

Moon: dark

Solunar period: major period @ 2 p.m.

Time on the water: 12:30 to 6 p.m.

Water covered: ~ 5 miles

Other fishers: solo trip

I was hoping to catch some trout around the deep mouth of the canal that opens into the lagoon, expecting the tide to be pushing out bait toward the lagoon. The tide was working as expected, but the trout were not on the feed. I could see some suspended fish on the Lowrance, but if they were specks then they weren’t hungry. I probed the area with a white clouser to mimic a shrimp, fishing it slow and fast, trying to cover different levels of water.

I worked out into the lagoon and made a zig-zag pattern for about a mile back and forth across the channel that the shrimp and oyster boats use for about a mile. No one was home, so I cut over to the shoreline and started slinging a spoon fly for redfish. I got back into a pond where the water was a bit cleaner and saw some reds working for bait. It was too windy to creep up on them, so I went around the edge of the pond and got upwind of them. I drifted downwind toward them but they moved and flanked me and were beyond casting distance. I drifted back to the entrance of the pond and cast into the entry point and got a good strike. The fish made a hard run and after a few seconds it came free. I cast a few more times into the spot and got another strike, and this time I landed the 25” red (released). When I unhooked and saw it had another spot in its mouth that looked like it had been hooked previously. Maybe it was the same one that bit a few minutes earlier.

I started working my way back in about 4:30-5 and picked up a few small specks on the clouser fly (all released). They seemed to be patrolling about 20 yards off the shoreline. Every now and then something would slash through schools of mullet that were scattered about the shoreline. It may have been trout or some other predator. I could not get close enough to get a shot at whatever it was.

I tried the mouth of the canal that meets the lagoon again on the way in, but did not get any action.

Saw no birds working bait today. Did see a mink, though. Just a few biting gnats (midges) were starting to show up in the evening. More will come soon (be prepared).

Was loaded up about 6 p.m. as the sun went down and hit the road back to New Orleans.