Fall is on the Horizon
FISHING SABINE LAKE in September is exciting for several reasons. With the hot summer months ever so slowly fading away, it signifies the very beginning of what is a transitional period for us. We gradually begin to shift our focus away from the jetties and the Gulf and concentrate more on fishing the lake.
Although there are still fish to be caught south of the Causeway, fall is on the horizon, and for us that means fishing Sabine Lake, the bayous, and surrounding marsh. The fall flounder run is in its primary stage. Shrimp are beginning to make their way out of the marsh and bayous, where big schools of trout and reds are there to greet them.
Over the next few months, seagulls and slicks will lead us to these schools, and there will be lots of nice limits taken. We are not quite through fishing the ship channel and jetties though, because that bite is still going strong.
It is nice, however, to slip into the lake on a good calm September morning and get a little taste of what is right around the corner. Have a good pair of binoculars handy and cruise the lake looking for working gulls and slicks. They may be north, south or anywhere in between, but when you find them, it will be worth your trip.
Kill the big motor well upwind of the school and drift or troll until you get into casting range. Morning Glory, Roach and Glow soft plastics rigged on ¼-ounce lead heads work well, as do black with chartreuse and bone colored topwaters. Other good bets are ¼-ounce Rat-L-Traps in chrome/black and chrome/blue.
The future of our redfish is also looking bright as the marsh and shorelines are loaded with juveniles as well as nice slot fish. Coaxing them into a game of potential life or death tug ‘o war is relatively easy as they are not scared to eat live or dead bait, plastic or metal.
In the lake, you should have little problem locating them along the eastern bank from East Pass all the way south to Blue Buck Point. Troll down the shoreline in about two to five feet of water and tempt them with soft plastics, topwaters or gold spoons.
Some excellent choices as far as plastics are concerned are Zoom Super Fluke, Norton Bull Minnow and GULP! Shrimp in Hudini, Glow and New Penny. Pearl or pink Skitterwalks and black with chartreuse She Dogs are a couple of hard to beat topwater choices.
If you prefer the real deal, anchor or power pole down on the points on either side of the mouth of the bayous. Use a fish finder rig with a 3/0 Kahle hook. Live or cut mullet and croakers, fresh dead shrimp and cracked crab fished either on the bottom or under a popping cork will work well.
On calm afternoons you can also expect to find big schools of reds roaming the mid lake area from Johnson Bayou to the Intracoastal Canal. These massive schools shouldn’t be hard to find or to stay with when the wind is calm and the lake is smooth. There is a good chance you’ll also encounter some giant clouds of shad throughout the system this month.
If you do, fish the perimeters with gold spoons, Hoginars, or shad and mullet under a popping cork and make sure your drag is set. I hope to see you here on Sabine in September.
Location: North Revetment (Pleasure Island)
Species: Speckled Trout, Redfish, Flounder
Baits/Lures: Live Shrimp, mud minnows, D.O.A. Shrimp
Best Times: Early and late with moving tide
Email Eddie Hernandez at [email protected]