Yesterday was my last official day of summer break. To say I had a great summer of fishing would be a huge understatement. I was able to hit the water about 2 times a week for most of June, July, and August and fish with some good friends along with a few new ones. I had a 9th place finish at the Lone Star Kayak Series on my first official day off along with a 3rd place finish last weekend. I caught my personal best trout that was a hair less than 27″ and really refined my topwater game. My birthday is next month and my wife and I decided we would have a small get together at the house and celebrate with a fish fry. I haven’t kept too many fish this summer so the freezer was running a little low. With plans to leave town for a few days next weekend and the party the week after that, I decided to hit the water with Jared yesterday to end summer with a bang and do a little “grocery shopping” for the party.
We launched shortly after 6 and started making our way into the marsh. I had already spoke with a good friend and knew that a few schools had been roaming the area we were heading to over the past few weeks. We entered the lake where the fish had been hanging out and split up to locate the pods. The birds weren’t to active at this time but it wasn’t long before I spotted several schools in one corner of the lake. Jared arrived and we immediately went work. I started out using my spinning reel with a Chicken Boy Shrimp on a 1/4 oz jig head. My goal was to keep my distance and pick fish off of the edge or near back of the pod in hopes that they would stay together and continue working the area. I made a few casts around the outskirts of the pod but didn’t have any takers. While casting at that pod I glanced to my left to see another one heading right towards my kayak. We were eventually going to collide so let the lure fly and it landed in the middle of them. This caused an immediate hookup and the pod exploded. I landed a solid 27″ red and he was lit up like a pumpkin.
I strung him quickly and noticed Jared was hooked up as well. I located the next pod and fired a cast out in front of them. I felt the thump and set the hook but it came flying back at me and tangled around the end of my rod. I quickly dropped it and grabbed my bait caster with a Hydra Bugg and hooked up on the first cast. I horsed that fish to the net in under a minute and quickly put him on the stringer. The Chicken Boy I had been throwing with the other rod was still tangled up and the lure was sitting in the water while I was stringing my second fish. Apparently a good sized red swam by and picked it up because my rod nearly shot out of my lap before I was able to grab it. The line was tangled around the rod tip and the fish snapped the 30 lb. braid quickly with one strong run. I located another pod about 30 yards away and made my way towards them. As soon as I was in casting distance I launched the Hydra Bugg out in front of them and a few twitches later I had my 3rd fish on the line. I landed that fish, strung it, and saw that Jared was hooked up as well and had been for a while. I thought he had a good over slot red, but it turns out he had somehow hooked a 20″ black drum in the tail and it was putting up quiet a fight. It took roughly ten minutes to string my limit which was the fastest I had ever done that.
The half a dozen pods we were on dispersed so we worked the area with she dogs for a while but didn’t have any luck. We decided to leave that lake and fish another that was nearby with lots of mud and shell around a foot and a half deep. I continued throwing my she dog while Jared worked a popping cork with gulp. Jared hooked up with a sold 24″ red within the first 10 minutes so I switched over to a popping cork while we slowly crab walked towards the launch. We picked up a few more reds on the popping corks on our drift and I sight casted a 18″ red with a Hot Pink Hydra Bugg right before we reached the truck. I was able to take home 6 reds and a black drum which put a major dent in the amount of fish we will need in a few weeks. I’m hoping that one more trip like that during this upcoming long holiday weekend will be enough to feed everyone that is able to make the party. It was a nice ending to a great summer.