Blind Casting the Marsh with 20/20 Vision

As an avid shallow water angler, I enjoy spending the majority of my time sight casting to fish that I can see, instead of blind casting for the ones that I can’t. Since the first day I pitched my lure into the path of a visible fish, I have been hooked (pun intended). Being able to watch a large redfish as it slowly moves through the shallow water, seeing it pounce on my lure, and then getting to listen to the sweet music made by my line, as it gets ripped from my reel, is an experience that I never get tired of. When the tides are right, the water is clear, and the fish are cooperating, this is the style of fishing that I prefer over any other.

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However, things don’t always work out the way you’d liked. Sometimes the tides are going to run a little higher than predicted, which makes spotting fish more difficult. You’ll also have to deal with dirty water, fish that are laid up and not feeding, and even ones that spook easily. The hard truth is that you’re not always going to be able to sight cast them. In the event that you’re forced to spend your day blind casting, make the most of each cast by putting your lure where the fish should be.

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DSC_0118 copyPlenty of anglers out there view blind casting as a style of fishing that requires a little bit of skill and a whole lot of luck. In their mind, blind casting is about tossing your lure in every direction possible, with the only emphasis being, “cast as far as you can, to as many different spots as you can”. However, the more experienced angler knows better than to believe that. He doesn’t make a lot of “random” casts. Each cast he makes is to a targeted area for one specific reason or another. He doesn’t put a whole lot of stock in dumb luck, and instead believes that fish tend to hang out in certain areas for a number of reasons. With this in mind, you should constantly scan the water (and shoreline) for places that are more likely to hold fish than others, and make casting to those spots a priority.

Points

PointAny and all points along a shoreline are worth casting to. By points, I am referring to parts of the shoreline that extend out towards the open water or a sharp bend in the shoreline. A good point provides redfish with a great place to ambush bait as it passes by. While some points are better formed than others, all deserve a cast or two as you paddle/drift by them. As you approach the point, be sure to cast several yards past it and work your lure back across the tip. I normally try to make at least three cast at each point. One where my lure passes within a few yards off the point, one where it is 5-10 yards away, and another that is 10-15 yards off.

Coves

While points protrude out toward open water, coves do the exact opposite. They dip inland, forming small half circle pools along the shoreline that are normally a little shallower than the surrounding area. The combination of the shallow water and ability to trap bait makes a good cove the perfect spot for a group of redfish to feed. They can corral the bait towards the back of the cove, or slowly roam the area looking for something to munch on. These coves also provide redfish with a great place to hide from strong winds and choppy water as well.

Windblown Shorelines

DSC_0153 copyMany anglers overlook a good windblown shoreline because the location of it changes as the direction of the wind shifts. These shorelines are also difficult to fish since the wind is constantly pushing you towards the bank. However, a shoreline that is being repeatedly pounded by waves as a result of the wind, provides redfish with a great place to feed.   Baitfish and shrimp that are seeking shelter along the shoreline get pushed up against the bank, where they become disoriented as the waves crash down on them. As they struggle to regain their sense of direction, redfish are able to grab an easy meal. If you’ve ever wondered why a specific shoreline only holds fish on certain days, pay attention to the direction of the wind and see if a pattern develops.

Wind Protected Shorelines

While windblown shorelines have been known to produce a solid bite on many days, sometimes fish like to go the opposite route and hideout against the wind protected shoreline. These areas offer calmer water that will be much cleaner than the windblown side. The fact that the water near these shorelines has less chop and current, allows redfish to remain stationary and conserve energy. Windblown shorelines are great places to start when you get on the water. However, if you aren’t having much luck, don’t be afraid to change things up and give the wind protected side a try. 

Drains

image2Drains within a marsh are created when a channel connects one body of water to another or when a narrow portion of the water branches off of a main lake, only to eventually come to an end a short distance later. Depending on whether the tide is outgoing or incoming, current will flow through these areas. Redfish, trout, and flounder all take advantage of the bait that gets caught in the current, which makes a drain an outstanding place to fish. I like to start by fan casting the area about thirty yards before I reach the actual channel. As I enter the channel, I’ll fish it as well, often times bouncing a soft plastic along the bottom. Since water is constantly being forced through these channels, you can expect the majority of them to be a little deeper than the surrounding areas. As I exit the channel and enter the lake it connects to, I like to work the area about thirty yards out once again. 

Shell

shellOne of the most productive types structure to fish around along the upper Texas coast is a good patch of shell. Baitfish and shrimp love hanging around shell for the protection and food it supplies them with, which of course, makes it a great place for redfish to feed. One of the main things to keep in mind when fishing around shell, is that size is not always the most important thing. A small patch of shell the size of your kitchen table can sometimes hold fish just as well as a patch that’s the size of your house. A good pair of polarized sunglasses will allow you to see the shell, and where to cast without getting your lure hung up. Cast along the edge of the shell and try to keep your lure running parallel to it. Often time’s redfish will roam the edges where the drop off from the shell to the soft mud occurs.

The next time you’re faced with unfavorable conditions on the water, spend the day making the most of each cast by tossing your lure into high traffic areas. You might realize that a little bit of knowledge plays a key role in what was once referred to as “a lucky cast”.

If you’d like more detailed knowledge of the information listed above, Tobin’s DVD (Shallow Redfish) is a great resource to consider.  It’s about 2 hours in length and covers everything listed above, plus more.  I picked it up a few years ago and still pop it in every now and then to review things.  If you decide to purchase one of the DVDs, be sure to use the code “TAILTAILSIGNS” at checkout to save 10% off your total purchase.

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2016 Lone Star Kayak Series Event #1

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The first event of the 2016 Lone Star Kayak Series kicked off this past weekend, with the weigh-in held at the HarborWalk Marina in Hitchcock, TX. The last couple of April events have not been very kind to me, with only one fish to show for my efforts in both 2014 and 2015. I was determined to turn things around this year so I made sure that I was able to pre-fish before the actual event. After rummaging through some of my old fishing logs from past April trips, I took a day off from work and hit the water 10 days before the event.

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I took my time that morning and didn’t get on the water till nearly 7 am. The wind on this day was non-existent, so I tied on a super spook jr. and an oval popping cork with gulp. I started off with the cork, giving it gentle pops across the glassy water. After a good 15 minutes with the cork and no bites, I made the switch over to the super spook jr in hopes of finding a few hungry topwater fish. On the very first cast, I watched as a 30” redfish appeared 5 yards behind my lure, pushing a large wake with its head as it made its approach. As excited as I was, (because I knew what was about to happen) I continued walking the dog as if I hadn’t seen a thing. The red inhaled my spook, and a few short minutes later I had the fish in my kayak. A 30” red was not what I was after, but it let me know that I was in the right spot for big fish. I decided to stick with the spook jr and had another red in the kayak 15 minutes later. This one measured 29”, so at least heading in the right direction. These two fish were followed by 28.5”, 23”, and 27 7/8” reds, not to mention a 4 foot gar also caught on topwater. I decided to explore a few different areas before heading home, but didn’t really fish much more after that. I had found the fish I was looking for, and even though I was 10 days out from the tournament, there was no reason to stick around and beat up on these fish.

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I felt pretty confident that I could pull some good weight on tournament day from this spot, as long as nothing crazy happened between now and the 23rd. Of course, this being April an all, the weather went a little crazy. Lots and lots of rain flooded all of the rivers that lead to the gulf and we faced crazy high tides from the strong SE wind. As Saturday approached, I started second guessing myself and wondered if I should blindly fish a spot that would be less effected by the fresh water. Luckily, I decided to stick with my original plan.

On the day of the tournament, Johnathan and I launched our kayaks with half a dozen other anglers. We were all sitting around waiting for our clocks to say 6 am, and once they did, we were off and running. I reached the area I had pre-fished and immediately began throwing my Bone Super Spook Jr. I hadn’t made more than a dozen casts before a relish exploded on my lure. I fought the fish for a few minutes before finally getting a good luck at it. Its head came out of the water and I couldn’t see my spook Jr., so I knew I had a good hookup. After netting and stringing the fish, I laid it across the ruler and gave its tail a pinch and a swipe. 27 5/8” with plenty of time left to find my second fish. I felt great at this point and continued throwing the spook for another hour without any luck. I made the decision to switch over to my popping cork to see if it would produce. The winds were similar to my pre-fish day, but the tide was running nearly a foot and a half higher. So high in fact, that I was unable to crabwalk the area like I normally would.

I worked the shorelines, points, and pinches without a bite. I finally came across a decent sized drain where I immediately hooked up with something monstrous. My cork went under, drag started peeling off my reel, and all I could do was watch, as whatever had taken my gulp rounded a corner and finally broke me off. After a few choice cusswords, I thought about it and decided that it didn’t matter what I had just lost, because it wasn’t going to be a 20-28” red anyway. I tied a jighead back onto my cork and picked up a flounder a few casts later. I kept moving around, focusing on the points and grass lines without much luck. I approached another drain, and made a cast near it with my cork. Just like before, my cork disappeared after a few pops, and I had on another fish. It took a while to get a good look at the fish, which ended up being a 31” red. It was nearly 10 am at this point and that great feeling of having a solid fish at 7 am was starting to fade.

We deiced to leave this lake and try a few other spots out. Lucky for us, this move ended up paying off. Johnathan picked up a stout 24” red that weighed a little over 6 lbs. by tossing his cork into a drain. At this point I decided to move a little more and cast a little less. I worked my way around the lakes and only stopped to cast if I saw something to cast at or if I came to a drain. I ended up picking up a 25” red at the 3rd drain I came to, and that helped relieve some of the pressure of showing up with only one fish. At this point I decided to slowly fish my way back towards the truck. I had hoped to upgrade my smaller fish as I went that direction, but never had another bite.

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I arrived at the weighin a little early, but that just gave me a little time to hang out with friends that I hadn’t seen in a while. When it was all said and done, I had placed 6th out of 147 anglers and finally broken my string of one fish April events.

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Spring Break Marsh Trip

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One of the perks of being a teacher is having long breaks away from work throughout the year.  Spring break is one of those times, so David and I decided to squeeze in a midweek trip . Since we live pretty close to one another, we decided to meet up at his house and ride together. We made the traditional stop at Bucee’s to get a little breakfast before making it down to the coast.

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We ended up launching around 7:15 am and began the day throwing topwaters against the grasslines and over large patches of grass without much luck. We could see bait moving around, but none of it seemed to be fleeing for its life. Once we made it to the shallow stuff, we were blowing out redfish every 10 yards or so, but not one of them were interested in our lures.

Even though we weren’t getting any bites, there were fish in the area, so we decided to grind it out in hopes that we would eventually convince a few to eat or that they would all turn on and begin feeding. After two hours of throwing tops, plastics, spoons, buggs, and everything else on the kayak, David finally sight casted a redfish that was crawling along the grass lines with a Bugg. About 5 minutes later, I spotted one on the shoreline doing the same thing and made a cast at the fish. My Bugg landed on the edge of the grass, but came out and landed near the fish. He turned on my bugg, made me think that he ate it, but succeeded in fooling me.

While David and I were discussing our plan of attack, I picked up a 22″ marsh trout after seeing a small tern that was pretty interested in a certain section of the water. After a few pics, we continued working the shorelines and that turned out to be the trick. The fish that were 10+ yards off the shorelines were not interested in our lures at all, but the ones cruising along the grass were hungry enough for us to get a handful of bites. We decided to split up in order to maximize the amount of the grass lines we could work and meet back up later.

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I sent David a text an hour later to let him know that I had caught my limit of reds. He said he was 1 fish short of a limit and had lost a couple that would have completed it. I worked my way back towards him and picked up a few more fish along with way by continuing to focus on the grass lines. When I finally caught back up with David, he had strung his 3rd red and had caught a few extra as well. We explored the area a bit more and finally decided to call it a day. We were still spooking fish that were laid up, but they just weren’t interested enough in eating for us to continue grinding it out.

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I caught my trout on a 1/4 oz. Curl Tail Bugg in Electric Chicken and the reds came off of a 1/4 oz. Curl Tail in Blue Crab (My all time favorite color). David caught a few of his on buggs and a few on paddle tails.

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Long Time, No See

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It’s been about 3 months since the last time my kayak touched water. Work, my kids, and other obligations kept me off the water during the really cold months, so I was badly needing a little saltwater therapy.

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David and I met up at Bucee’s for breakfast before making it to the launch around 6:45. We unloaded quickly and made the short paddle to the spot we planned to fish. With the warmer weather and low tides, we had high hopes of spending the day sight casting our fish. The problem was, 99% of the fish we came across were laid up and not moving. The only way we knew they were around, was by the insane amount of mud boils that kept popping up in front of us. We took our time, fan casting the area near all the mud boils and caught a handful of fish. We only seemed to get bites when we made a lucky cast, that happened to land on the fishes head, causing a reaction strike out of fear.

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After a while, we decided to cover some water, to see if we could find a few fish that were more active, since these were being stubborn. Later in the day, we ended up finding a few fish that were actively feeding along the shoreline, but the action didn’t last too long.

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Soft mud and partially exposed patches of shell were the key to locating fish. The only lures we caught them on were the Buggs 1/4 oz. Beastie Bugg (New Penny) and Buggs 1/4 oz. Curl Tail (Black Gold). Later that evening, while cleaning fish, I found a few 1″ mud minnows in their stomachs, which explained why the Buggs worked so well, when the cork, topwater, spinner bait, and soft plastic didn’t.

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Although I haven’t fished much over the last several months, I have stayed busy with fishing related activities.

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I spent one night speaking to the Houston chapter of the Saltwater Boys Kayak Fishing Club at the new Sugarland Fishing Tackle Unlimited. My speech was titled “Blind Casting the Marsh with 20/20 Vision”, which is an article that I have been working on for some time now. A few days later I had the opportunity to speak at the Hook Spit Junior Anglers Association Seminar in Seabrook about the joys of kayak fishing. We had great turnouts for both events and as always, I had a lot of fun.

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Last but not least, I am excited to join up with good friends Cameron Barghi and Justin Rich, as a member of the Lone Star Beer Fishing Team. Now that Spring is coming back around, I’m hoping to stay more active on the water and my blog. Here’s to a fun 2016.

 

 

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Putting in the Miles to Find the Fish

 

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On Saturday my little girl asked if she could stay the night at her Granny’s house, which gave me a chance to hit the water on Sunday morning.  The wind was predicted to be between 15 and 20 mph out of the east, but I decided to tough it out and see what I could find.

I launched just after first light and made my way into the marsh.  The water was high, red, and fresh, which had me a little worried about the location I had chosen.  I thought I might find a little cleaner/saltier water if I paddled deep enough into the marsh, but conditions never changed.  After paddling three miles without any signs of bait or predator, I decided to change directions and fish another spot.

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I paddled for several miles down narrow channels through several small lakes before the water turned it’s normal brown and I was able to taste a little salt.  At about that time I looked across the lake and saw a few birds hovering over the water.  My first cast produced a 33″ bull and my 2nd broke me off.  I have been using the same cork and leader for over a month now and I guess the leader finally wore down.  The school stayed together long enough for me to pull two more fish from it (a 18″ and 25″ red) before they broke apart for good.

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I spent the next 2 hours working the wind blown shoreline and caught another 15 reds. Bulls, slots, and rats were all mixed in together  having a feeding frenzy.  With the extra high tides the key was putting the cork a foot off the grassline of the windblown shoreline and giving several hard pops to get their attention.  It never took more than a few pops before it would go under and I’d have a fish on.  I even caught a small rat that took the gulp off the bow of my kayak while paddling.  The action never really died off, I just ran out of time and needed to get home.  Despite the 13.7 miles I covered in the nasty wind (Thank God for carbon fiber paddles), it was a productive day on the water.  I kept my first three reds of the day for redfish cakes. The link to the recipe is below.

https://tailtailsigns.com/recipes/redfish-cakes/

 

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For those looking for a solid popping cork that will not only last, but creates a great chug when popped, check out the Bomber Paradise Popper.  By my estimate, I’ve landed more than 50 reds on it and the wire leader is still just as straight as the day I bought it.  It runs around $7 but you can use it seems like you can use it forever.

This was a solo trip and I left my Go Pros at work so the pics aren’t that great.

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Conditions:

Wind: 15 – 20 mph from the east

Weather: Sunny skies with temps around 70 degrees

Tides: Outgoing

Bottom: Soft Mud

Depth: 2-4 feet deep in most areas

Lures: Bomber Paradise Popper with Gulp Pogy on a 1/8 oz. jighead

Rod and Reel: Daiwa Ballistic EX 2500 on a 7′ 2″ Hook Spit Zephyr Elite

Kayak: Jackson Cuda LT

Paddle: 250 cm Werner Cyrpus: Hooked

 

 

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If At First You Don’t Succeed…

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One of the crazy things about fishing is how making a minor change on the water can have such a huge impact on the amount of fish you catch. Last month I made a rare afternoon trip to an area that I had fished once before, but had wanted to explore a little more thoroughly for some time now. I had put in some time on Google earth and found a few shallow patches of shell near the south shoreline of this small lake which made me think it had some potential. I had a decent south wind on this particular evening so I decided to seek shelter and take advantage of the protection that the south shoreline would offer.

I paddle straight into the wind to reach my destination and spent the next several hours casting around the edges of the shallow shell with a She Dog and a soft plastic, neither of which produced a single blowup or bite. I found it hard to believe that I hadn’t caught a single redfish, especially considering the areas I was fishing and the amount of casts I had made. I had an average depth that was between one and two feet deep, a soft mud bottom, small patches of shell, and plenty of bait in the water. And yet I didn’t have a single fish to show for my efforts.

I had been at it for a while now and started running a little low on daylight. I decided to head back towards the launch a little earlier than I had originally planned in order to keep from having to paddle back in the dark. The wind had finally let up a bit so I made a decision to give the wind blown shoreline a try before leaving.  I also switched over to a popping cork with gulp shrimp to see if I could create a little noise and bring the fish to me. The north side of the lake lacked structure so I had not planned on giving it a try. However, since it had been receiving a constant barrage of wind and waves, it only made since to give it a shot.

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I made my first cast and hadn’t made more than a few pops of the Cork, when it suddenly disappeared. I reeled in my line to find a nice little 18-inch marsh trout. Not exactly what I was looking for but it got the skunk off my back. After tossing him back, I made a few more cast and the cork disappeared once again. This time I a nice lower slot red was on the end of my line.

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For the next hour the action was nonstop.  I ended the trip with 10 reds and one trout before running out of daylight and being forced to head in. On my paddle back to the truck I couldn’t help but wonder if it was the change in location, the change in my set up, or a combination of the two that made the big difference on this trip.  I still haven’t figured that one out, but it was nice to be reminded just how much of a difference a small adjustment can make while on the water.

Conditions:

Wind: 15 mph from the south early on and 5 mph from the south at the end of the day

Weather: Sunny skies with temps around 80 degrees

Tides: Outgoing

Bottom: Mud with small patches of shell

Depth: 1-2 feet deep in most areas

Lures: Bomber Paradise Popper with Mantis Shrimp on a 1/16 oz. jighead

Rod and Reel: Daiwa Ballistic EX 2500 on a 7′ 2″ Hook Spit Zephyr Elite

Kayak: Jackson Cuda LT

Paddle: 250 cm Werner Cyrpus: Hooked

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Werner Paddles announces the new Hooked: Jackson Kayaks-Limited Edition paddle

In a collaborative effort joining 2 great American paddling families, Werner Paddles brings kayak fishing performance in a great new color scheme.  Introducing the “Jackson Kayaks-Limited Edition” Hooked kayak fishing paddle.

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Introducing their new HD Graphic process this past September, with their new “Trophy” and “Catch” options, the Jackson Kayaks-LE will now also be available on the Shuna and Camano: Hooked models.  The graphic is taken directly from the “GI Jackson” color scheme, Jackson’s most popular to date with anglers.

The philosophy of a “Great kayak fishing paddle is a great paddling paddle,” remains the core of Werner’s line focusing on performance and craftsmanship.   However when you can match that with looking good and having fun, everyone is winning.

Authorized Werner Paddle’s dealers will start stocking the new model starting immediately.

Hours from where the initial paddles were built in the family garage Werner Paddle’s remain family owned and handcrafted in Sultan WA, USA.  2015 marks their 50th Year of paddle experience, learn more at www.wernerpaddles.com

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3rd Annual Jiffy Pop Invitational Camping Trip

 

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This past weekend myself and 16 friends made our way down East Matagorda beach for our annual kayak/camping trip. We met up Friday around noon before making the short drive down the beach to the spot where we enjoy camping.

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Adam treated everyone to a delicious gumbo dinner on the first night from BB’s Cafe that went great with the keg of Saint Arnold Lawnmower that Michael brought.  We ate gumbo until we were completely stuffed and then ate a little more.  We sat around the campfire the rest of the night enjoying a few drinks along with the cool breeze before heading off to bed.

We woke up the next morning and enjoyed a few breakfast tacos that Tombo had prepared before hitting the water to compete in our 3rd annual lures tournament.  Each angler puts two lures in the pot as part of their entry and then tries to bring in the heaviest stringer of 3 trout, 2 reds, and 1 flounder.  The winner takes all the lures and the coveted trophy along with a package of Jiffy Pop Popcorn. The lures and popcorn are for the winner to keep while the trophy goes home with the winner for one year and then gets returned the following year for the next winner to keep.

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Fishing was pretty tough on Saturday, but everyone caught fish.  The winds were blowing around 20 mph and the tides were running about a foot higher than normal which was the complete opposite of last years trip.  When it was all said and done, I ended up with a little over 15 lbs. of fish and took home around $200 in lures, the Jiffy Pop, and trophy despite the fact that Charlie planted his Rastafarian Banana (Banny) in my front hatch.

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We cleaned a mess of fish Friday evening and enjoyed a fried fish dinner on Saturday night.

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I look forward to this trip each and every year, and next year will be no different.  A good time is had by all with plenty of good food, fishing, and campfire stories.

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Hook Spit Lone Star Kayak Series 2015 Event #4

October 2015 LSKS

For the first time since last spring, I actually considered putting on a jacket to start the morning. The temps were in the mid 60s with a cool breeze blowing through the air, which was a nice change from the heat we’ve had this summer. Johnathan Meadows and I were fishing the last event of the 2015 Lone Star Kayak Series on this morning and were patiently waiting for the clock to show 6 am so that we could begin our day.

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We were the only two people at our launch, which in my opinion is always a small advantage on tournament day. We wouldn’t have to worry about dodging other anglers that were fishing the tournament or miss out on fishing certain areas because someone else arrived first. I’ve spent 99% of my kayak trips sitting in the seat of a Jackson Cuda 14, but on this particular morning I decided to go with the Cuda LT instead. The marsh we were fishing consists of several dozen small lakes that go on for as far as the eye can see. With the Cuda LT weighing in around 20lbs. lighter and a little over a foot shorter than my Cuda 14, I decided to go with the kayak that had the ability to make sharp turns without needing a lot of space.

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We pushed off into the dark at 6 am and made the short paddle to the first lake we planned to fish. Johnathan started off throwing a topwater while I went with a popping cork and gulp. The plan was to throw different set ups to see what the fish were wanting and then both go with the lure that was producing more fish. It didn’t take long before I had my first bite on the cork which turned out to be a solid 26 ½” redfish. A few minutes later I had my second bite of the day, a chunky 25” red which gave me two fish on the stringer before the sun had a chance to peak over the horizon. Anyone that has ever fished a tournament knows how good I feels to have 12+ lbs. on the stringer within the first hour. It was obvious that it was going to be a popping cork kind of day with the higher than normal tides, so Johnathan put down the topwater and grab his rod with the cork on it. Anyone that’s in the market for a good popping cork rod that won’t break the bank should check out the Hook Spit Zephyr Elite.  At 7′ 2″ you can make those long casts and pop a cork the way its meant to be popped wit the extra fast tip.  It’s a great popping cork rod priced at $159.

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Another one for Clint

 

It didn’t take long before we figured out the pattern for the day and both had fish two fish on the stringer. With a decent NE wind blowing through the marsh, we used it to our advantage by focusing on all points and small coves on the windblown shoreline. It seemed like every point held at least one fish, along with any small cove that was located on the SE shoreline. The reds would wait on the wind protected side of the points and ambush the bait as the current forced it by or they would focus on the bait that was unwillingly being pushed up against the shoreline by the wind.

At one point we thought we had doubled up on two solid reds, but come to find out, Johnathan had a 27 ¾” red while I had a two foot alligator. It didn’t take long for the gator to realize what was going on and make a mad dash for the protection of the tall grass on the shoreline. He hit the bank and never looked back, eventually slicing through my leader and letting me keep my cork.

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Shortly after the gator broke me off I was able to sightcast a 30” red by standing up in the LT and letting the wind push me towards the tailing fish. I could tell this fish would be out of the slot, but who can resist sightcasting a 30” red in a foot of water. Johnathan was able to catch an oversized red a few hours later as it and a couple of other fish were barreling down the shoreline destroying any bait in their sight.

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We ended the day each catching more 6 lb. reds than we could count, our two oversized fish, and a few larger ones that stayed in the slot and made the trip to the weighin. In the end, Johnathan took home 1st place out of 96 anglers with 15.56 lbs. while I finished 6th with 13.15 lbs. Congratulations goes out to Jason Blackwell who took home Angler of the year honors once again, giving him his third AOY trophy in as many years.

1st and 6th Walking to the table

1st and 6th Walking to the table

 

We had a great day on the water with a couple of nice stringers to end the tournament season. We took full advantage of the benefits that comes with fishing with a friend on tournament day, which I believe helped both us catch more fish than we would have alone

I’d like to give a huge thanks to Werner Paddles, Hook Spit Performance Rods, Buggs Fishing Lures, and Jackson Kayak at this time.  These companies provide me with quality products that have helped me become a better angler over the last several years.  I am truly blessed with the opportunity to represent them and look forward to doing the same when the 2016 tournament season kicks off.

release2

 

On a side note, the Lone Star Kayak Series will be back again next year, but the tournament owner and director will change. Dustin Koreba has decided to step down and hand it over to Cameron Barghi and Justin Rich. Cameron and Justin already run the Saltwater Survival Series and have been a part of the LSKS team since it began 4 years ago. We can expect a new beer sponsor and a few new lures, but overall, the things that make this tournament so special will remain the same. Now we all have to fish against Dustin instead of accepting prizes from him.

Conditions:

Wind: 10 mph from the NE

Weather: Sunny skies with temps between 65 and 75 degrees

Tides: Outgoing

Bottom: Mud with occasional patches of grass

Depth: 1-2 feet deep in most areas

Lures:

Bomber Paradise Popper with a Gulp Pogy or Mantis Shrimp on a 1/16 oz. jighead

TTF Killer Flats Minnow on a 1/8 oz. jighead

Rod and Reel:

Popping Cork setup – Daiwa Ballistic EX 2500 on a 7′ 2″ Hook Spit Zephyr Elite

Soft Plastic setup – Shimano Citica on a 6′ 10″ Hook Spit T-N-T

Kayak: Jackson Cuda LT

Paddle: 250 cm Werner Cyrpus: Hooked

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7 Signs You’re “THAT Kayak Fisherman”

Ben_Duchesney

Here’s a good article written by Ben Duchesney over at Kayak Angler Magazine titled: 7 Signs You’re “THAT Kayak Fisherman”.  There is a short excerpt below with a link to the entire article at the end. Whether you’re new to kayak fishing or you’ve been doing it for years, this article is a good read.

7. Don’t Spoil The Newbies

As a general rule, most of the kayak anglers you’ll ever meet are some of the coolest people around, willing to give you the money lure right out of their tackle box, even if it’s their last one. But, every once in a while, you’re going to come across that guy who looks down on new kayak fishermen. News flash, if they are no new kayak fishermen, then there’s no growth, no new gear or new tournaments, no sport of kayak fishing.

The easiest way to not be that kayak fishermen is to just relax, have fun on the water, and be the best ambassador to our sport that you can be. If you see a young angler or an angler that is clearly struggling or very green to the world of kayak fishing, give them a hand. Help them tie their boats to their truck, give them that money lure, or just tell a joke and make them relax. Make sure you remind them, it’s all fun and games. Just don’t have this talk on the boat ramp.

This is an excerpt from the article “7 Signs You’re THAT Kayak Fisherman,” from Kayak Angler magazine’s website. Click here to read the full article

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