Frank Davis / Fishing Expert
If fishing is in your weekend plans, I got a suggestion for you that will result in your catching some nice speckled trout. Here’s precisely what you need to do:
Forget about all the encroaching river water in the nearby lakes and bayous, instead make your way to Sea Way Marina at Lafitte, head down the Barataria Waterway, and when you get to the adjacent lagoons and ponds bordering Hackberry Bay you'll find water that's jam-packed right now with speckled trout of every size and weight. Capt. Mike Kennair will tell you that you should have absolutely no problem catching them because they are more than willing to take artificial baits when presented to them properly.
“Best method for bringing home a limit,” Capt. Mike instructs, “is to rig a popping or chugging cork with about an 18 inch monofilament leader, tie on a quarter-ounce, round, unpainted, leadhead jig, fit the hook with a clear-flake sparkle beetle with a red hotspot, toss it out away from the boat, and pop it hard every 6 to 8 seconds.
“Trout anywhere around will slam into it and you'll begin collecting a 25-fish per person limit right away.”
There are a few mandates you must follow, though:
1—Get out there real early I the morning. This time of year most of the fish will be active on a morning bite.
2—Not only will the early fishing time put you in the midst of the day’s action, it will also allow you to catch your trout early and get back to the marina long before the heat begins building for the day.
“That heat is a killer,” Capt. Mike interjects! “It will zap even the most rugged of men and strip away virtually all of your stamina and endurance. And unless you drink lots and lots of cold water, you could invariably end up a victim of heat exhaustion. Remember—hat, sunglasses, long-sleeve shirt, sunscreen, and lots of cold water. It’s not an option. . .it’s a necessity.”
3—Live shrimp are not required down the Barataria—you can have a great time throwing plastic. I recommend beetles: clear, flaked, smoked, glow, and chartreuse, all with a red hotspot.
4—A Speculizer will also produce trout for you. Use it as rigged right out of the packaging.
5—A white or crème-colored Gulp bait has also produced trout during the past two weeks. You might want to stop at your favorite sporting goods store and add a canister to your arsenal. But they too should be fishing under a popping cork.
6—Finally, the pattern is such that you’ll need to do some significant “relocating” as the day progresses. You’ll start off making a couple of casts and catching a couple of fish. Then the bite will stop. No problem—simply move a little ways. Usually 30-40 yards will get ‘em going again. And when this spot quits, move again! Keep moving all morning long, picking up a few here and a few there, culling as you go so as to return the juveniles under 12 inches back in the water. This technique, then, will facilitate the use of a trolling motor. If you don’t have one, then bring along a sculling paddle. It’s just how it is right now!
7—Just for the record. YOU ARE GOING TO NEED TO BUY A NEW FISHING LICENSE TOMORROW (July 1). YOUR CURRENT ONE WILL EXPIRE TONIGHT AT MIDNIGHT! Call all of your fishing buddies and remind them. I can tell you for a fact, the LDWLF will be out in force during the next week or two making sure you heeded this reminder.
Now next week I’m heading down to see my friends at Coco Marina in Cocodrie. With the month of July looming large on the horizon, that place has to be corroded with fish of every size, shape, and description. I’ll post what I find right here as soon as I get back to the marina.
In the meantime, if you want some company on a Barataria trip, simply call Phil Robichaux Fishing Charters and book one of his ace guides. Just a suggestion: don’t lollygag around. The word is out and while it’s possible to book a charter rather easily now it might not be possible by next week. The number to call is 504-329-8005.
Oh, yeah. . . wear your life jacket whenever your boat is moving, and always strive to be careful and courteous out there. Tight lines and good times!