Saddle up boys and strap on those spurs because the scouts on the horizon are seeing some prime fishing ahead. Understanding conditions and knowing where to go and what to throw the next couple of months should produce some solid stringers. But first I'm going to tell you a story about a client of mine.
Several years back during May I scheduled some groups of my corporate people for fishing in Port Mansfield. We hunkered down at Capt. Bruce and Shirley Shuler's Getaway Adventures Lodge, a dreamy spot. One of the groups that came down was Everitt Industrial Supply, Inc. out of LaPorte, Texas. The owner, Lowell Everitt, a big, burly guy had recently started fishing with me so I didn't know him very well but one thing I did know was that he had a lot to learn about fishing with artificial lures.
Let me tell you about our fishing that day. We were wading a muddy grass flat throwing Bone Diamond Bass Assassins. Lowell was about 5 yards from me watching a hook-up every cast and scratching his head asking what was he doing wrong because he was not getting the same action. I replied back with a wise crack, "Some people have it and some don't!" He laughed and told me, "I'll deal with you when we get back to the boat."
Not really sure what he meant by that we just kept on fishing. When we did get back to the boat we had close to 40 trout. Now remember I told you how big Lowell is but to be more specific he is about 6 feet 7 inches and his biceps are bigger than my neck. I was still bent over putting the last fish in the cooler when next thing I knew there's a big hand grabbing me behind the neck and another hand on my rear side and I'm being catapulted out of my own boat about 10 ft into near 4 ft water.
I came up splashing and laughing and Lowell said, "Some people have it and some don't! Now are you going to help me and tell me what I was not doing right to catch fish?" Lowell became a client forever and a special friend to me still today.
Over the past years of fishing with me, Lowell has listened and learned. With some education and the right tackle Lowell has become an outstanding trout fisherman. This past June 13th I was on some decent trout and had a cancellation. After picking up the phone and calling Lowell we agreed to meet at the dock the next morning by 5:30 AM. Early that next morning Lowell and I loaded up and my 25 ft Explorer and 250 Suzuki were wide open headed to this special reef in East Matagorda Bay.
We were the first ones there and Lowell had everything rigged just right with a Roach Bass Assassin. You can call it luck or whatever you want but I'm telling you his first cast that morning was a 29 1/2 in. speck. On my scale the trout weighed 8 lbs 9 oz and Lowell had just entered the 29-Inch Club. I snapped some excellent pictures of the two just as the sun was coming up and they were great shots. That same morning Lowell released a 27, 26, and 25 in. trout to boot and his last trout of the day was 24 3/4 inches. We were back at the dock all smiles fully knowing that this was a day neither Lowell nor I would ever forget. By the way, that big fish will be hanging on his office wall.
Now back to my fishing forecast; the first part of September is a little slow. I call it a transition period from summer to early fall. About the middle of the month, if everything goes as it should, my records say the fishing picks up. Also, you have to remember, we could have one of those Big Blows brewing out in the gulf. I hope not but it is that time of year.
Last month (August), guides using live bait outdid the guides chunking lures. We were throwing roach Bass Assassins, She Dogs, and Skitter Walks in the heat of the day catching trout 20-24 inches at the rate of about 12-18 fish a day. Call it the dog days of summer. We did limit out a couple of days when the surf was right, catching everything on top waters, mainly the GRCH She Dog. This plug from Mirrolure Company has been a good bait for me.
September fishing could start out a little tough because, as I said, it is to be considered a transitional month. Shrimp are preparing to stage up in big pods and menhaden and mullet will likely be on the move. Chances are we might have a light norther to cool our water down a tad. Consequently, you will have to fish smart perhaps using some different techniques and baits.
Some suggestions on innovative fishing techniques could be to try the new cork from Bass Assassins or use the Cajun Thunder with a 18-20" leader and a 1/16 oz lead head rigged with the new Shrimp Cocktail in the Bone Diamond, Redfish, Natural Glow, and of course the Drunk Monkey. This combination should be very effective with the noisy cork and stinky shrimp tails or even try the regular 4" Sea Shads.
Another bait you can try is the Rebel J20S Broken Back. Eddie Douglas of Bay City buys thousands of these Broken Backs every year and hand paints them using heavier split rings and #4 Owner Brand hooks while painting the eyes red. This bait has proven itself when fishing gets slow. Eddie uses this bait exclusively and I have seen his stringers. The back hook even has a red teaser. I can attest to this bait's effectiveness as it has caught me plenty of trout and reds. Eddie's improvements on these Broken Backs can become very addictive because they work so well.
An enticing addition to any tackle box is Colorite's Tail Dip. I use the chartreuse color and will not throw my Assassins unless they have been dunked in this tail dip. This paint gives my Assassins a flash in the water that trout and reds like. If you are interested in obtaining Eddie Douglas's version of the improved Rebel J20S Broken Back or the Colorite Tail Dip I use, the only place you can find it is Johnny's Sport Shop in Eagle Lake, Texas. Mike Grigar's phone number is 979-234-3516 and he will be glad to fill your order.
As I have mentioned in previous articles, in order to be successful in any business you have to possess the right tools for the job. The lures I mentioned above are a must because fishing requires you to be versatile. In other words what worked yesterday may or may not work today. I will even use a gold or silver spoon at times if necessary. Other options could include switching from a 1/4 oz lead head to a 1/16 or 1/8. What I'm trying to get you to see is not to be afraid to change things up.
Changing things up can relate to the way we present any given lure as well as the lure itself. Example: When I'm using a top water bait I may twitch it hard 5 or 6 times and then let it sit for 10 seconds and after that barely move it at all, just lightly twitching before I start the whole sequence over again. Perhaps I will just walk the dog slow with a twitch stop twitch stop then shake the heck out of it and stop it. Keep changing things up and don't get yourself in a rut by doing the same thing you have been doing for years.
Imperative for any fisherman is a good rod and reel. My choice is a Shimano Crucial 5 ft 9 in. or 6 ft 3 in. rod with a fast tip. For a great reel I pick a 100 Curado D or Chronarch 50 MG. These are excellent products that I have used and do recommend. After 7 1/2 months of use my 100 D started making sounds so I sent it in for repair which proves to me its durability.
East or West Matagorda Bay you take your pick because both of these bay systems are holding quality fish. Be sure to fish water with bait movement and for Heaven's sake don't be afraid to change your tackle, lures, colors, or even the way you present your lure in the water.
One last secret I will divulge is the scent product called Bang. I might use either the shrimp, garlic, or menhaden smell on all my Bass Assassins and it works. Best flavor is garlic. Wear your kill switch and be safe on the water.
Until next time, God Bless!