South Padre: June 2009

South Padre: June 2009
Protective clothing will be important in the coming months.
How quickly summer has arrived! Can you believe almost half of 2009 has gone by? Before I start with the meat of this article, I want to take the time to thank the loyal readers of TSFMag. I've been getting calls, emails and letters and I enjoy hearing from readers.

For the last two months the prevailing south winds have been relentless. Winds of 25 to 35 mph and sometimes gusting to 40 have been pretty common down here. The good news, with the exception of a few days; we are still catching good numbers of fish. If you read my April article, I mentioned that in windy conditions we like to start off in productive areas that can lose their clarity once the wind starts howling and then resorting to protected back bays or coves that will tend to hold clarity even in windy conditions. We continue to follow that same pattern. On most occasions we find ourselves right next to the color change. As the dirty water progresses we try to stay ahead of it, or as mentioned, right on the contour. If you can recall back to June of last year, you will remember that we had to deal with windy conditions throughout the month of June when ordinarily it is a month that the winds tend to diminish.

June is when we begin to see schools of redfish concentrating in their usual summer holes. These normal haunts are also areas that attract large bait schools. The appearance of both bait and redfish occurs almost like clockwork. A major factor in this is the amount of water present in that particular body of water. In the summer months the water tends to recede all night. As you start your day, look for the deeper holes within the area to hold the greatest concentrations of fish. A sure sign will be nervous mullet on the surface. As the water level starts to rise, remember the fish will migrate with the bait onto shallow flats.

This month we should also start seeing better numbers of flounder caught along the ICW and guts or depressions nearby. Most of the edges of the ICW north or south of the Arroyo are pretty firm. Finding flounder is just a matter of putting in the time, but make sure you plan your flounder quest while a current is flowing. When targeting flatties I like to work plastic bait that has a fluttering action or a tail that sends some kind of vibration through the water. Working it slow near the bottom will surely increase your chances.

Currently our trout numbers are way up although their size and weight have decreased from the previous past months. We are catching some trout up shallow along with our reds, but for better numbers you might want to focus in three to four feet of water with visible potholes.

Despite the strong wind we have been sticking with topwaters as our number one choice. When it's not as windy, smaller baits like the Spro Dawg 100, Super Spook Jr, and She-Pups have been working really well for us. In windy conditions we switch to noisier and larger plugs. Over the past three windy months I have been amazed at the number of people who gave up on topwaters. It is a general misconception that you only throw topwaters early in the morning, late evening and in near perfect conditions. I am amused by the look on my clients faces when I tell them we going to be throwing topwaters most of the day, especially when they know we'll be fighting wind. As windy as it has been, even in thirty mph winds we have been doing really well on surface lures.
When the fish have not been interested in surface lures, a gold spoon usually does the trick.

A quick note to remember, June will bring plenty of floating grass. That's why I like to rig my topwaters with Gamakatsu live bait hooks with a ring. The 1/0 is the size for your smaller baits, 2/0 for your medium baits, and 3/0 on the larger baits, single hooks are easier on the fish and the fisherman as well.

In closing, the summer months bring increased heat index and UV rays. It's important to dress properly to protect yourself and stay cool at the same time. Simms fishing wear does both for me. I like to layer with a Solarflex tee and Bluewater shirt on top. They deliver UV protection, quick drying, and comfort during a full day of fishing. Go to to learn more.