HOPEDALE, La. - This morning's warm temperatures and little fog were a welcome surprise when we headed out of Hopedale's Breton Sound Marina. More surprising was the 71 degree water temperature we found in the small bays off the Pencil Canal between Hopedale and Delacroix Island.

Captain Jonathan Sanchez had scouted the area yesterday and located good size schools of 13-16' speckled trout feeding in 4-5 feet of water on the edges of tide lines. His dad Glenn, operator of Breton Sound Marina, confident that we could catch the trout using only plastics refused to bring the only live bait the marina has right now, cockahoe minnows and we did.

Working the smaller bays off the Pencil Canal between Hopedale and Delacroix Island, we caught 27 very active specks and a nice flounder in less than 3 hours of fishing. Some were caught on the bottom using a 3/8 oz jig head to keep the plastics deep but most came under a popping cork rigged 4-5 feet deep. The baits used were chartreuse hybrids, creole shrimp matrix and Deadly Dudley limetreuse with orange-dipped straight tail.

This pattern should hold until the frontal system moves across the area this Saturday. Depending on how severe the winds are and how low the water temperature drops, it might be necessary to revert back to winter patterns until the next warm-up.

Remember to set the hook hard!!!

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