Frank Davis / Fishing Expert
The fact is I’ve been up against some extreme fishing adversity many times in the past, but I’ve always worked around it one way or another. Today, though, my luck changed big time: there were too many variables to make fish-catching even possible.
“Yeah, but you can blame that on the high winds, dirty water, low water, ripping tides, and depressed temperature,” Capt. Gene Foret explained. “It was today’s dominating frontal system that created our unfishable conditions. That’s what handed us a complete water haul. Do you realize that we caught nary a fish after 4 straight hours of fishing. Okay—so we had two on the line at one point, but we’ve yet to put a fish in the boat.”
In spite of today’s discouraging outcome, though, Capt. Gene was pretty optimistic about the days and weeks ahead.
“Right now, Frank, we’re doing really well on drum and redfish in the deep holes back in the marsh. And when the weather gives us a break every fisherman in the area is bringing home his share of nice sized speckled trout.
“The drum and reds seem to want cracked crab most of all, but they will take a nice chunk of fresh market shrimp if it’s presented to them in an appetizing manner. Of course, some lively Cocahoes will also be well received by both species when fished on a Carolina rig. But if you plan to target speckled trout—and only trout—I doubt that anything can beat a lively live shrimp dangling 16 inches beneath a popping cork.”
So where to fish?
For trout. . .in the open bays and lagoons where you see shrimp jumping on the surface or where large significant flocks of sea gulls are diving and feeding.
For reds. . .wherever torpedo-like wakes are spotted along the shoreline and the occasional dorsal fin protrudes above the surface. The second most productive spots will be where two bayous or canals intersect with each other resulting in a deep hole on the floor of the marsh network.
“The way you fish these spots,” Gene explained, “is you cast and retrieve in a fan cast configuration. Technically, thoroughly work over each point on the imaginary fan until every point is covered. Then if no bites are produced, move to the next deep-channel/bayou hole and fan cast that spot too. When you finally hit upon that one location where the water surface churns with strike action. . .drop anchor and work it until no more strikes are detected.
“Then move to the next hole and begin making your strategic moves all over again.”
Now next week we travel down the Barataria to invade Lafitte and beyond with the one and only Capt. Phil Robichaux. Join me here with the results of the trip right after 3:30ish or so! Meanwhile, be careful and cautious out there. And wear your PFD, okay?