Monday, September 21, 2009

9/21 - These tides.......

If you are a frequent visitor here, you know I tell it the way I see it. I call a day when there's a really high incoming tide and a N.E. or East wind. A "K.O.D." day. Not very conducive for river float-rig fishing for Speckled Trout, less alone anything else. So what's the best thing to do? Hit the bottom. And this morning we had really no alternative.

But you know me, I never leave the house without my float rods rigged and a bait well full of live shrimp.

Had Mike D. and his wife aboard today. So I had to scramble a bit to get some live fresh crabs, because I just talked to Mike the day before. So with everything in place, we left the dock around 7:30am. First thing, get to where I've been starting days like today, and get some baits out ASAP. The first push of the incoming tide has been the ticket. No sooner we got there and a few other boats that left before us were already hooked up. But our first taker didn't take long, but we sort of lost it. The fish ate the crab off the hook while giving us a sort of false hook-up.

No biggy, I had about a dozen crabs just enough to get some Reds as the incoming tide rumbled under us. Mike is an avid Texas Gulf coast angler, that had us swapping info back and forth like to kids trading baseball cards. Which made for a fun day.

It didn't take long and Mike got his chance on a big Redbass and so did his wife, pretty much a double header. The bite came just minutes after he showed me a big Red on his cellphone camera. I said while he held his fish for the camera, "Damn Mike, is that just like the ones in Texas?" We had them from 19 to 24 pounds. Then the bite just went away. So we moved around, looking for the perfect current, along with everyone else.

Mike's wife had a Red with probably 100 spots. A really beautiful fish, but in all the confusion of taking photos, I failed to take a photo of her with "my " camera!

We only caught a large river Seabass, and I had only a crab or two left. So after a quick pit-stop for a ladies room break. We were on our way to the jetties. I'm a float-rigger, and love teaching and showing people the techniques and in's and out's that make it so fun and interactive.

With all the chit chat about it there was no way Mike was going home with out giving it a try.

We ended up fishing the start of the falling tide out there. It was "sporty" just getting to the jetty tips. East Nor-east wind at around 15 kts. and the start of a falling tide bucking the wind. A Kowa-bunga ride on out, but not all that bad once we were anchored up in my "jetty fishing sled". I had this boat built with the lay out designed for one thing. Fishing the Big Jetties, no matter what the weather brings. Always safe, and no one's going to feel like they're gonna fly out of it. Compared to low sided inshore boats, with limited deck space.

Mike and his wife were set up and floating a live shrimp down the rocks at first. But as the tide fell the floats would come off the rocks and hover where there was no washing current. Not perfect. But, Mike's wife was first up with a jetty sized Mangrove Snapper. We boxed 3 or 4 decent Mangroves, and Mike caught two Jacks.

Eastward, the clouds were dark, and we could see sheets of rain falling from the sky. "Hmmm, time to make a decision??" Mike said, "it's all cool Dave, we can head back in."
So I drug up the anchor as the rain approached and followed us in the jetties....which now were, EXTRA SPORTE!

Peaks of 5 foot tall waves, rolling over at the mouth had me slowly slogging through, doing my best Tug Boat imitation. But no worse for the wear. And when we got back to the dock the rain was just drizzling, and headed south of the boat ramp.

Let's see.... the tides have been well over 5 feet tall at high tide, with an East wind blowing the water in the river now for the last 7-10 days. I haven't seen a "genuine" dead low tide since.

As I said, certainly not all that conducive for perfect Trout fishing. Thank goodness, the big Reds are biting, if not real good, at least enough.

Personally, I like to split the day up. I don't want to bottom fish for the same fish, over and over again. All day long. Been there, done that. Each day, I hope to be able to mix it up a bit. And today even though conditions were far from perfect, I'm really glad I got to share a bit of it with Mike.

Next "pre-booked" day is Friday, with an old client looking at Saturday with friends as of right now.

Plan, Plan, Plan. I know what the weather's doing, I know the tides. Get the best out of you day on the water. Please give me some notice.