Fish Talk: August 2009

Fish Talk: August 2009
Well folks, the “Big Bridge” over the Intracoastal Canal finally opened the last week in June and it is a sight to see; no more waiting at the swing bridge. Fishermen will still have to mess with the Colorado River Locks until that job is complete and at this point is ongoing with a variable completion date. Many are aware of the hot spots in and around Matagorda but there may be some newcomers to welcome and acquaint with what we have to offer in our small coastal community.

Looking at the bait camp scene, there are a couple of well-established businesses that can supply most all your fishing needs. These include:

Russell’s Bait and Tackle—979-863-7620—Russell’s is located at the big Matagorda Harbor just off Highway 60. Accommodations here include four boat ramps, gas pumps, live croaker and shrimp in season, dead shrimp, ice, offshore baits, and plenty of fishing tackle to supply your needs. Russell and Brandy Hicks run a fine business.

Rawling’s Bait Camp—979-863-7669—located about six miles south of the “BigBridge” on the way to the beach. Mike Talasek runs this store and can supply your live croaker and shrimp, offshore bait, ice, gas, and fishing tackle needs. He may even give a little fishing advice as well. This month Mike will have plenty of eating shrimp 9-12s and 13-15s if you’re looking.

For one-stop establishments, check out these two convenience stores:

The Bird’s Nest Market (Locals call it the Shell Station)—979-863-1167—located on Highway 60 coming into Matagorda. Find gas and grocery items here along with a mean hamburger or cheeseburger around lunch time.

Stanley’s—979-863-7613—Highway 60 at the caution light right before the “Big Bridge” can also accommodate your gas, grocery needs, along with some fishing tackle and mini lunch buffet.

I’ll mention a few lodging contacts but also am aware that there are many others:

Shell Motel—979-863-2520—this is also the Waterfront Restaurant but they take reservations.

David Cassady’s Full Stringer Lodge—979-863-1143.

Fish Jumpin’ Inn—979-863-2309—talk to Joyce.

Fishermen’s Motel—979-863-0000.

Rental houses—979-241-1705—Bink Grimes—979-479-1397—Mark Talasek.

Pelican Point Marina RV Park—979-863-7888—ask for David Allen.

Stanley Fisher House—Bed and Breakfast—979-863-2920—ask for Peggy Stanley.

If you are looking for a restaurant, here are a few picks:

Waterfront Restaurant at the Matagorda Harbor—979-863-2520.

The Reef—979-863-7990—located on Beach Road.

River Bend Tavern & Restaurant—979-863-7481—located on Beach Road.

Spoonbill’s Restaurant—979-863-7766—located on the left one block before the “Big Bridge.”

If you strike out on your fishing trip, stop by Buddy’s Seafood—979-863-7500 to grab some fresh fish, shrimp, or oysters. He will also provide you with offshore baits as well. This is a great place to stop before heading home.

Matagorda beaches are clean with a fishing pier and small jetties. There have been plenty of fish caught off the rocks and pier. You will need a permit to travel onto the beach which you can obtain at Stanley’s Grocery Store.

Now for those who are interested in fishing, one thing is for certain. June was one of the hottest on record temperature-wise but that did not keep us from catching quality fish. Most days we had our limits including a 31-inch trout caught and released. Both East and West Matagorda Bays produced if you could bear the heat. July played out about the same with most of our catches coming off small Skitter Walks or big Super Spooks and, of course, Bass Assassin’s Roach, 10W40, and Chicken-on-a-Chain. A lot of good trout were caught by fishermen drifting scattered shell and chunking live shrimp under popping corks.

August plans are to fish East Matagorda Bay as much as possible but if the winds get me I’ll head over to West Matagorda Bay. Wading East Matagorda Bay’s Mid-Bay Reefs will be top choice and I’ll be throwing Bass Assassins and drifting over scattered shell. If I’m thrown over into West Matagorda Bay, I’ll wade grass beds on an incoming tide. My eyes will be watching the surf because when it gets right it’s like taking candy from a baby.

August night fishing is another item on the agenda if the conditions are conducive. All in all, fishing has been on the upswing. Just a friendly reminder to watch that sun and don’t overdo it. Drink plenty of water and for heaven’s sake wear those ForEverLast stingray boots to protect yourself because the stingrays are bad this year more so than ever.