On Galveston: June 2011

Take away the wind please! In my thirty years of guiding fishermen on the Galveston Bay System I cannot remember a stretch when the wind remained as strong for so many days in a row as we have seen in the past month and a half. Dealing with gusty conditions for a week or two is one thing; anybody can work around that, but nearly two months? Gimme a break! NOAA calls for 15-to-20 and it ends up more like 25-to-35. Conditions like that like for days on end wrecks everything but small patches of leeward water and, you guessed it, these do not always hold the kind of fishing our bays can offer. Hopefully June will be our month to finally get on them.

If we can get the wind to lie down we are going to have a super month, no doubt about it. We have plenty of fish; we knew that back in February and early March with the number and quality of trout we were seeing. Right now it seems the best fishing has been down in West Bay, behind San Luis Pass, Tri-Bay Area, Bastrop, Chocolate, and Christmas. Those particular bays have been doing a lot better due to the protection area they have, plus the pass, a lot of the tide runners seem to be coming in. There are lots of baitfish, gafftop, croakers, and even the trout are doing it. When the wind stays less than say mid-20s and you get that good green tide entering the bay, the wade fishermen have been doing real good on topwaters. We had a few days when the wind laid down and lots of fish were caught in slicks in the middle of West Bay over shell. That is what we are looking forward to.

Coming around the corner into Texas City Flats, Texas City Dyke and all that shoreline around Moses Lake and San Leon, there has been consistent opportunity for decent trout given that these areas are generally protected from strong southerly flows. The primary key in that area has been that the trout seem to be favoring the shell bottoms.

Trinity Bay has been real tough, as you probably already know a due south wind just crushes it. We can bump around out there every time the wind lays a bit but it is no fun to go out there and get beat up for a couple of fish if you're lucky.

East Bay has been the slowest I have seen it in years and I do not believe it is for lack of fish. My prediction is that as soon as the wind lays down, all the major reefs, from Hanna all the way through East Bay will light up like a pine tree on Christmas Eve and continue right through summer. Lots of folks will get limits; lots of folks will catch some real quality trout everything we have been waiting for all spring.

There has been some wade fishing success in certain areas but it has been real sporadic and not consistent like the old days. Sometimes I wonder if it might be due to the current lack of shrimping pressure nothing going on in the main bays to drive the trout to the shoreline all the shrimp are out in the middle so that's where the trout are staying. We have the best shad crop after this real cold winter that I think I have ever seen. There is nowhere that you can go, anywhere in this complex, that you are just not totally covered up with shad, finger mullet, and glass minnows, the bait is everywhere and our fish are eating real well right now, anything but our lures. (Ha-ha.) That is just something we just have to go through right now and traditionally, if you talk to the old-timers, early summer is when the fishing really takes off. Look for June to be a slugfest.

In closing I want to thank everybody that came out to the Bridgewater Events Center in Baytown for the Ultimate Galveston Bay Fishing Seminar that James Plagg and I presented on April 10. The house was packed with nearly 150 present. Saltwater Soul Apparel was our title sponsor and we thank them for all they contributed to the event. The sponsor list included American Rodsmith, Waterloo Rods, Costa Del Mar, Boyd's One Stop, Big Nasty Baits, Bass Assassin, Stunt Grunt Lures, Tidal Surge Lures, Texas Sportfishing & Yacht Sales, East Side Honda, Reel Inn, and Fish-On Tackle Shop. The door prizes and raffles list was enormous. The DVD of the seminar is available at Marburger's for any who missed it live. Next year will be even bigger and better!

Hold the presses!

I know this article seemed full of doom and gloom on the fishing scene and a general whine session about the weatherbut looky here what just happened! The wind laid down for three days last week (May 5-6-7) and guacamole what a three day run we had. Fishing was on like Donkey Kong from San Luis Pass to Baytown. I nearly missed getting this update in before the magazine went to print and I'm very happy I did. I've been saying all we needed was a break in the wind and as far as I'm concerned this proved it. Like I said earlier, I look for June to be a slugfest here on the Galveston Bays!