Sunshine and bent rods put a smile on most Texas angler’s faces. March in Matagorda brings us the unofficial start of the 2021 fishing season for many anglers. We are tired of being told where and where-not to go – outside in the salty air is our comfort and refuge. Our beaches and bays are waiting.
A nice boat ride clears the head and speaks promise to a prosperous year. We are ready to catch a fish on a topwater, wade a grass flat, pop a cork over shell, and walk the granite at the jetty. We are ready for a bite of Coastal Que Barbecue, quite possibly the best smoked meats you have ever tasted.
Take a gander at Matagorda Outfitters. Their inventory consists of the most respected brands in the business. Their logo attire turns heads; and, if you need last-minute tackle or a complete outfit, their doors are open right at the base of the big bridge across from Stanley’s.
Now to fishing. We will be splitting time in East and West bays during March. Most of our drifting trips will be in East Bay over deep shell with the same baits. Live shrimp are deadly in spots like Lake Austin, Oyster Lake, Crab Lake and Boggy. Redfish are usually everywhere. We can make long drifts or anchor on reefs.
Tides are traditionally above normal in March, so there are plenty of places to get out of the wind if spring weather holds true to form. Redfish are not the only drum in abundance in March, juvenile black drum, the eating kind, frequent reefs in West Matagorda Bay. Twin Islands, Shell Island and Oyster Lake are all proven drum haunts in March. Live shrimp under a popping cork is the best bet, but dead shrimp will work, too. Over-sized black drum, those over 30 inches, are the spawners and are catch-and-release only by state law, but that doesn’t mean they are any less fun to catch. Big black bruisers frequent the channel and jetty leading to the Gulf, and a cracked blue crab or mullet gets eaten quickly. The jetty is a great spot to intercept big reds and drum for Spring Breakers. There are some folks who target nothing but large sheepshead against the rocks with live shrimp.
If our mild winter persists, March could be more like May. Water temps in the upper 60s and lower 70s is not out of the question; and, if you like throwing topwaters, those big tides push big fish to the shorelines.
Waders seeking big trout most certainly work the east end of East Matagorda Bay. Brown Cedar Flats, Half Moon Reef and Catch-All Basin have soft mud bottoms that hold heavy trout in the spring. Flats adjacent to the ICW on the north shoreline are players as well. Big trout slide in to the depths of the channel on low tide, then creep back up on the flats on the incoming. Hangout there long enough and you may meet one or two of Matagorda's finest.
We are ready to get back to church, movies, ballgames and plain ole’ simple civilization. We welcome you back to Matagorda, although many never left. In fact, 2020 saw a boon of visitors tired of the concrete restrictions. Real estate is booming and so is our economy. Put a smile on your face and love your neighbor.
Spring renovations at the lodge are almost complete. Sunrise Lodge and Properties offers vacation rentals as well as a full service hunting and fishing lodge right on the water.
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