The View: July 2024

The View: July 2024

We take a different approach in July. Fish early, get off the water early. It has worked for us for years. That’s why we installed a pool at the lodge. We leave well before daylight and then cannonball in the pool when the mercury begins to boil.

July normally brings some weak cool fronts that knock down the humidity and flatten the Gulf of Mexico. We will work the surf and jetty on these days, concentrating in the first gut on the incoming tide and tossing topwaters on the outer bars on the falling tide.

When winds are light we also drift the middle of East Bay. Trout and redfish hang there all year, and slicks become more prevalent during July, especially for schooling redfish.

The mid-bay reefs consistently hold good trout in July. We start out in waist-deep water on the shell drop then end up in chest-deep water on the end of the reef as the water warms. Know your tides. There have been many mornings I have arrived to find nothing, but patience prevails, knowing the incoming tide will bring fish to the reef. Slicks popping in deeper water adjacent to the reef are good signs.

Don't be surprised to find birds working along the north shoreline with calm conditions. Since the ICW runs along the northern boundary of East Bay, those shrimp running the "ditch" often enter the bay on the incoming tide.

Likewise, the reefs along the north shoreline are a boon for waders tossing topwaters on the incoming tide. Never underestimate the cuts leading to the bay on the incoming tide as well. Those fish enter and exit the ditch daily through the cuts. There are some good trout on the shorelines for waders as well.

Again, it's usually an early bite with the heat. We find those trout over the grass early, then they fall along the ledge into about 4-5 feet of water later in the day.

Something we don’t like to talk about in July in the southwest wind. It is a tide-dropper and wreaks havoc on our water clarity. We just deal with it.

Some tides will be the lowest of the year, much like winter, so we take the same approach of winter and work the areas that consistently dump water and fish at low tide.

Offshore anglers will enjoy excellent red snapper action in 40-80 feet of water.

Tripletail action in the bay has been hit-or-miss thus far. Better catches have come on the weedlines just off the beach; and, more tripletail have been spotted in East Matagorda Bay in the past two years.

Expect kingfish, cobia and dorado to remain consistent over structure. Expect tarpon to show along the beach in late July. Legitimate 200-plus pounders were caught and released last summer.

Please continue to take care of our fishery and release more than you take.

Catch and release really is cool!

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