Hooked Up: July 2018

Hooked Up: July 2018

Summer is in full swing down here on Baffin and the Upper Laguna…in other words, it's damn hot in the afternoons.Our days are starting early to try and beat the heat.The early starts are not only good to stay cool, but a great advantage in scoring quality trout bites before the sun comes up and the heat index rises.

This time of year, I run a lot of half-day charters.The shorter trips are run in the Upper Laguna and Corpus Christi Bay.They are another way that we beat the heat and try to be back in the comfort of a pool by early afternoon.The cost is considerably less than a full-day charter and puts more emphasis on catching numbers of all species rather than focusing on the largest of trout in Baffin Bay.Speaking for myself and many clients who choose this option; it's a win-win in fun, comfort, and monies spent.

Regardless of which option you charter me for, the days do start early this time of year.In general, the trout bite is pretty solid until around 9:00 AM and will start tapering off after that (at least for us lure fishermen). I am a lure guide 24/7/365.There is no such thing as “running out of bait" and heading back to the dock because of it.When the trout bite slows, we switch gears to sight-casting reds and whatever else we can find on the flats.You hire me to fish with lures, and you will get your money’s worth.Guaranteed!

Something I look forward to during these summer days is for the sun to get high enough up, around 9:30 AM, for serious sight-fishing opportunities. As much as I am blessed to fish so many days of the year, and as many trophy fish as I have caught in my life, I still get overwhelmed with excitement when I spot a fish in the distance, stalk her, and make that perfect cast.Being able to watch her suck in your lure or chase it down is the biggest thrill in fishing for me, regardless of the size or species.I have said it many times over, but it truly is the perfect combination of hunting and fishing.

Doing so much sight-fishing in clear, shallow water, the observations you get to make are fascinating, especially when you see them for the first time.I am blessed to have too many to write about in this limited space but want to share one that took place two years ago in June.

My clients and I had made a great first wade that lasted almost three hours.We had caught all species, including a good number of flounder. Besides the flounder we caught, we kicked up many more.I told the guys that I would go get the boat and bring it closer.

Headed back, I was still walking through flounder and decided to slow down and try and spot them before I spooked them.In no time I saw one and made many casts trying to get her to eat, to no avail.I soon spotted another, but just a rods length away.Same result.

I finally ran my rod across her back and she, naturally, spooked off.The fascinating part was that when she did, a second flounder shot out from under her.The larger was laying on top of the other!I thought I my eyes were tricking me, but since then I have observed this behavior a half dozen more times.

Researching the subject has not provided any reliable info, as that time frame is not conducive to breeding.If any of you readers have an idea of what is going on here, please enlighten me.Thirty years at it and still learning!

Site-fishing, as much of a rush as it is, can be frustrating at times. I think a few of my best tips for you would be to remain very conscious of how much noise you are making as you walk.If you can hear water sloshing around your shins – you can bet they hear it and sense it, too.

Probably the most important thing for me is downsizing my lures. The 4-inch Turbo Shad by Bass Assassin in a natural color is my go-to lure.The small MirrOdines are also a great choice on stealth wades.

Saying that, I'm always experimenting with new things on the market, including this little crab lure by Savage Gear shown in the photo.Just a little thinking outside of the box, can pay big dividends.

Remember the buffalo! – Capt. David Rowsey