Late Spring Tactics for Sabine Success
T HE MONTH OF MAY has arrives in full force, and every major bay system along the Texas coast should welcome it with open arms.
Anglers will reap the benefits of ever-increasing water temperatures and stable weather conditions as spring has definitely settled in. Summer is knocking on the door.
This is the month that gets the ball rolling. May sets the wheels in motion for coastal fishing patterns that will be our bread and butter for the next few months.
With the wind finally starting to settle somewhat, and the mercury continuing to climb, the fishing just keeps getting better and better. Being able to plan a fishing trip knowing the conditions should be favorable, is enough to get anyone excited. The fact that everything is biting is icing on the cake.
The semi-consistent jetty bite always seems to step it up a notch during this month. It can, and usually does go from fair to fantastic at some point this month. Bring your entire arsenal of baits because the fish will seek and destroy everything from soft plastics to topwaters.
If the real thing is your tactic of choice, simply anchor off on a rock pile or washout. Use a fish finder rig or popping cork with about three feet of leader and cast toward the rocks. A 3/0 Kahle hook should be perfect for this setup.
Chances are you won’t have time to set your rod down, but if you do, make sure it’s secure in a rod holder. Don’t be one of the many people, like me, who have lost expensive gear to these cold-blooded thieves.
Anglers who choose soft or hard imitations should do well by trolling down the wall. Cast as close as you can to the rocks and work your lure all the way back to the boat. Vary your retrieve so you can determine whether the fish are deep, suspended or near the surface.
Don’t forget—if you fish anywhere on the east jetty, including the channel, you’ll need a Louisiana fishing license. The action in the lake should be equally as good. The rocks on the north revetment of Pleasure Island are a good place to start. Throwing topwaters early on calm mornings can result in some serious action. Incoming tides should be your best bet, but as long as you’ve got moving water you should be in business.
Bone or pink Skitterwalks and She Dogs are tough to beat as topwater choices. Also, a three-inch Gulp! Shrimp in new penny or white rigged under a popping cork can be a deadly combination for specks and reds.
Another proven late spring area for trout and reds as well as some bonus flounder is the shoreline from East Pass all the way to Willow Bayou. Soft plastics rigged with 1/4 ounce or 1/8 ounce lead heads (as well as topwaters and soft plastics under a cork) will get the job done. Again a moving tide will work in your favor. Glow and glow/chartreuse soft plastics are hard to beat in clear water. If it’s murky, darker colors such as Morning Glory and Texas Roach will get better results. Good topwater colors are black with a chartreuse head and bone.
If you want to get serious about flounder, key on the bayous and cuts on the Louisiana shoreline. Work these areas over thoroughly as you slowly work your way down the bank. The stretch from Johnson Bayou to Garrison’s Ridge is prime real estate for flounder in May. Mud minnows or Gulp! Swimming mullet should be all you need for a good excuse to fire up the broiler.
THE BANK BITE
Location: North Revetment (Pleasure Island)
Species: Trout, reds, flounder,
Bait: Soft plastics, topwaters, mud minnows
Best Times: Early and late with moving tides