ALWAYS SOMETHING NEW
A week of lighter winds was apparently all it took to light-off the trout bite in Sabine Lake. The water hasn’t cleared up that much, but several local anglers I have talked with have been able to fish areas that have received little or no pressure since early-January and they report better catches as well.
I didn’t catch a trout over four pounds all week long, but we limited on 17- to 20-inch fish, every day but one. The first day we were naïve enough to think that we had ferreted out our own cove full of fish. The following day we decided that it was the lure making the difference as several other boats were fishing the same area but catching fewer fish.
By the time Friday rolled around, however, we had fished one or two other areas and the trout were there as well. We caught them on a variety of different lures and colors, but a Catch-5 and a MirrOlure XL were hard to beat.
A short visit with Steve Simmons over at Outcast Tackle in Groves was all it took to confirm that I was actually a couple of weeks late in my assessment as to when the bite started coming around. I was talking with a couple of Jefferson County anglers when another young angler stepped up and introduced himself.
“When the wind hasn’t blown me out I have caught trout almost every day since late-March,” he politely informed me. “I am primarily a bass fisherman, but I stop and fish the revetment wall on the way home from work most every afternoon. I won’t put my bass boat in saltwater, but I like catching trout…so I just walk the rocks.”
I was returning to my truck a few minutes later when he walked up once again and made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. “I will be out there tomorrow afternoon if you want to meet come meet me and see what I am doing. It’s a little different.”
When I couldn’t find his truck, I decided that what I had perceived to be an opportunity may have been little more than a snipe hunt. I gave it thirty minutes after driving to the end of the north revetment wall to no avail.
I was ready to leave when I snapped to the fact that he hadn’t said which revetment wall he was fishing. I never fish the south revetment wall, but not even checking it out would only further guarantee a wasted trip.
Sure enough, about half way down the wall I spotted his truck. He was just getting out when I pulled up behind him. “Tie one of these on,” he said before negotiating the short band of rocks. “Thanks,” I replied, “But I didn’t even bring a rod. I just wanted to watch you fish a little while."
It took him less than a half-dozen casts before hooking the first of several trout. The conditions were far from perfect with a light wind increasing as we stood there, but he was still catching fish when I drove away.
“If the wind gets any harder than this I can’t catch trout on this lure, but you’ll know when the waves are too rough,” he told me. It was not the fact that he was catching fish on the south wall, but the lure that he was catching them on that surprised me the most.
He was using a Whopper Plopper and doing nothing more than casting it out and reeling it in on a steady retrieve. “I was going to cut one off after a tournament on Toledo Bend, but decided to make a few casts. It’s the only lure I have fished for the past month!”
“You can throw it a mile,” he added, “and that’s important when you are fishing from the bank. It’s kind of like a cross between a Devil’s Horse and a Hunchback, but I never catch fish letting it sit.”
The lure has been the talk of the bass fishing world for the past couple of years, but I had never seen anyone fishing it in saltwater. It should come as no surprise, however, as everything from ‘Traps to crankbaits have proven to be as deadly on trout and reds as they are on bass.Not unlike Corkys, they are a little too expensive to be throwing in amongst schooling redfish but seeing is believing and I will offer the trout my first one on my next trip!