THE PRETTY GREEN WATER that seems to overtake the Sabine ecosystem in the summer months is what gets me the most excited about fishing in July. The southerly winds help push the pretty water with the incoming tides, and it seems to just keep on coming.
With the green water comes a smorgasbord of species with large appetites. Trout, redfish, flounders, lings, sharks, tripletail, jacks, croakers, drum, snappers, king mackerels, Spanish mackerels, stingrays, sheepsheads, hardheads, and gafftops (some obviously less desirable) can all be caught within minutes of the boat ramp.
If you decide to hit the jetties on or near gulf waters you should have little problem locating most of the species mentioned above. The jetties hold tremendous numbers of trout and reds as well as numerous other rod-bending species.
Light colored soft plastics fished fairly deep with a ¼-ounce lead head, or live baits such as finger mullet, shad, and live shrimp should produce the best results. If the winds are favorable, and your heart is not set on limits of trout only, try breaking away from the jetties and venturing out into the open gulf waters.
On most good days you shouldn’t have to run very far to find a nice weed line. When you do, ease up to it with the trolling motor and start looking. Most of the time it’s just a matter of seconds before you see a tripletail relaxing in the shade, or even sunning on top of the grass.
Flip whatever color plastic you’ve got tied on in front of his nose and see what kind of mood he’s in. Many times he will inhale it as soon as it hits the water just so none of his buddies get the chance. Other times he will sniff and follow it for a while as others come out of the shadows to see what the fuss is all about.
More often than not you will hook up quickly and continue catching as long as they hang around. Be ready for some serious tug of war, and do your best to turn it away from the weedline as quickly as possible. Some of these brutes can be pushing 20 pounds and have a knack for getting your line tangled in the grass.
Don’t be surprised if other big, dark, torpedo-shaped silhouettes suddenly appear from the shadows. It’s not uncommon to see big ling or sharks while fishing weed lines. You’ll obviously need heavier gear to land one of these, so if you’ve got a big rod handy, use it. If not, it’s still worth a shot with light tackle.
Another very exciting option is to fish the giant schools of pogies that come in close to the jetties. Big jack crevalle, ling, sharks, mackerel, and reds will hit just about anything shiny that you can rip quickly through the water. Rattletraps and MirrOlures are good choices.
Like everyone else, I love chasing the Big Three, but when the hot, green water makes its way to Sabine in the summer, it’s nice to break the mold and do something just a little different.
Location: McFaddin Beach
Species: Speckled Trout, Redfish.
Best Baits: Topwaters, soft plastics, rattletraps.
Best Times: Mornings & evenings with calm winds.
Email Eddie Hernandez at [email protected]