Hooked Up: June 2012

Hooked Up: June 2012
Bill Rabb finally pulls down his first over-30 at a whopping 9.5 pounds.

I cannot believe that June is rolling in so soon. The warm winter and spring has just melted into the summer as has my wanting to get out of waders. It is plenty warm enough to wade wet, but lucky me, I walked over a propeller and cut my calf muscle nearly to the bone. In avoidance of a bad infection, my good friends at SIMMS will get some extra play time out of my G3 waders this month. As soon as Dr. Tom gives me the nod, I'll be back in my Flats Sneakers and enjoying the early morning splash out of the boat that sometimes makes you forget that you are a man.

May 5th was the largest full moon of the year, known as the Super Moon. As expected the tides came rolling in and clean water from down south has made some positive impact on the brown tide that we have been experiencing since March of this year. As of now I'm not sure what long term affects it will have on the brown tide, but I'm excited about what I am seeing so far. The east side of the ICW looks awesome with green water that is spreading into many areas of Baffin. The north shore of Baffin has great clarity and visibility that stretches as far west as East Kleberg Point. On Baffin's south shoreline the water is good as far in as Los Corallos but still has some patches of brown mixed in with the good water. Rocky Slough and the Land Cut have been gorgeous.

Along with largest moon and high tides comes a migratory push of new life in the form of baitfish and predators entering our part of the bay system. This is really a special time of year when it takes place and one that will produce as much action as any other time in the twelve month calendar. For me, coming into Bluff's Landing Marina, I am usually greeted with big loads of harvested fish from the croaker crowd. I will admit that I have to cringe every time I see it as it greatly disturbs my conservative mindset; however, it is still valuable information and helps me understand how that migration is progressing and which areas are producing.

When I am targeting trout this time of year, my first instinct is to look to the major corridors of fish travel, and then find the structure along those routes. The visible part of the equation is to locate bait and slicks. During this time, I will be heavily focused on structure along the ICW and the shallow flats that are located within close proximity to these travel routes. The structure could be a deep dropoff along a spoil island shore, scattered rock piles, and also natural potholes in two to four feet of water. Add good structure to bait and slicks, and you will be catching good trout, reds and flounder this time of the year.

Lure choices have not changed much, but I am having much more success with topwaters very recently than I have had in all 2012. The She Dog by MirrOlure has been a heavy favorite for me, and has produced some big trout of late. As always, my go to lure is the 5" Bass Assassin in a variety of colors. Last month I was big on Morning Glory and solid white. As the water has cleared in the bay, I am reverting back to the more natural colors like Chicken on a Chain, Houdini, and Panhandle Moon. A 1/16 ounce jig head is standard fare for me but I always have an 1/8 ounce head handy for deeper situations or if dealing with high winds. If hunting redfish, I am all about the paddletail line of Bass Assassin lures. I typically rig these with a 1/8 ounce head as I like to swim the lure more than jigging it.

In closing I would like to give a big thanks to a new sponsor of mine, MAUI JIM sunglasses. I have been wearing them for a few years now and have long believed that they have the best glass in the business. I am very excited to get to work with them on a professional level and know that I am keeping my eyes in shape for spotting fish for years to come.

Y'all remember what happened to the buffalo...be conservative. It is not an unlimited supply.

"Set 'em loose." -Capt. David Rowsey