The View: March 2016

The View: March 2016

"Beware the Ides of March," spoken to Julius Caesar in the Shakespearian tragedy, foretelling his death by fellow Romans, friends.

Likewise, anglers should beware of the Ides (March 15), for swelling spring tides stir large, aggressive fish to feed. Warm, new water from equinox tides pump fresh recruits to barren back lakes and reefs that have been exposed all winter. It's rejuvenation from the winter doldrums, for both fish and fishers, and the first real opportunity to shed clothing and add a little color to your skin.

Folks will frequent Matagorda during Spring Break for our beaches and easy-access fishing. Wives and kids love the quiet living on the peninsula and our waterfront rentals and coastal restaurants. If you don't fish on the bays, most riverfront houses have piers with lights to fish at night.

We will be splitting time in East and West bays. We love to wade the guts and bayous in West Bay with Soft-Dines, Bass Assassins and Down South Lures. Most of our drifting trips will be in East Bay over deep shell with the same baits.

Live shrimp are deadly in spots like Lake Austin, Oyster Lake, Crab Lake and Boggy. Redfish are usually everywhere. We can make long drifts or anchor on reefs; and, you can still fish them when the spring winds blow.

If a late-season cold front blows through and drops tides, move to the mouths of lakes. The water and bait will be pouring out of the back lakes and the fish ride with the tide and bait. Camp out and wait for the redfish to come through.

Redfish are not the only drum species in abundance during March, juvenile black drum, the eating kind, frequent reefs in West Matagorda Bay. Twin Islands, Shell Island and Oyster Lake are all proven drum haunts in March. Live shrimp under a popping cork is the best bet, but dead shrimp will work, too.

Over-sized black drum, those over 30 inches, are the spawners and are only catch-and-release, but that doesn't mean they are any less fun to catch. Big black bruisers frequent the channels, rivers and jetties leading to the Gulf, and a cracked blue crab is the most popular hors d'oeuvre.

Matagorda's new jetty is a great spot to intercept big reds and drum for Spring Breakers. There are some folks who do nothing but target large sheepshead against the rocks.

Waders seeking big trout most certainly work the east end of East Matagorda Bay. Brown Cedar Flats, Half Moon Reef and Catch-All Basin have soft mud bottoms that hold heavy trout in the spring. Since a gator trout's main diet is finfish, mimic a mullet with Corkys and Soft-Dines. Depending how warm March becomes, a topwater might even be an option.

Sunrise Lodge on Matagorda Bay will be at the Houston Fishing Show at the George R. Brown Convention Center March 16-20. Come by and say hello to Tommy Alexander, Charlie Paradoski and myself. We will be across from the Waterloo Rods booth and if you book a charter with lodging at the show we will give you a Waterloo to use on your trip.

We will have complimentary Fishing Show tickets available Wednesday through Friday. Give us a text for tickets.

Follow our catches on Instagram @matagordasunriselodge.