Wednesday, August 22, 2001
Port O'Connor Fishing Strong Southwest Winds
Now, let’s get down to fishing. It’s been a fight at times here lately and the pumping south-southwest wind has us taking a standing eight count before we ever leave the ramp. It is absolutely unpredictable, however, and one day it’s surging and the next it is much calmer. Correspondingly, fishing is like night and day under lighter winds and greener water.
FISHING RECAPITULATION 08/16/01 Thru 08/20/01
Here is what fishing looks like under the microscope starting on the 16th. At this time, we are relying on live finfish to get the job done. With San Antonio Bay chewed up by the wind, we have been more or less limited to fishing Espiritu Santo Bay:
08/16/01 – Cranking S/SW wind at 20+ knots and gusting.
Chris Smith party of 3; Capt. Kris Kelley; 20 Trout from 16 to 20”.
08/17/01 – Calm S/SW wind backing a little to the southeast
Richard McDaniel party of 3; Capt. Paul Thompson; hydraulic steering failure; heroic effort on the part of Capt. Paul to get the party back to the ramp from Ayres Bay; 4 Trout including a 25, 24, 17 and 20” fish; NO CHARGE TO THE CLIENT, FREE HALF DAY CREDIT.
Gary Fields party of 3; Capt. James Cunningham; 23 Trout including a 26” Trout and two 24” fish. (Pictures)
Chris Smith party of 3; Capt. Kris Kelley; 25 Trout from 18 to 23”; 6 Redfish including a 27.5, 27.75, 24, 25, and two 21” fish.
08/18/01 – Cranking S/SW wind at 15+ knots.
Gary Fields party of 3; Capt. James Cunningham; 26 Trout from 15 to 18”. (Pictures)
Jim Turlington party of 2; Capt. Kris Kelley; 15 Trout from 15 to 20”. (Pictures)
08/19/01 – Cranking S/SW wind at 20+ knots.
Jim Turlington party of 2; Capt. Kris Kelley; 11 Trout and 1 Redfish. (Pictures)
08/20/01 – Calm S/SW wind under 10 knots.
Ron Prellop party of 3; Capt. Kris Kelley; 25 Trout from 16 to 23”. (Pictures)
By this time last year, there wasn’t a Trout in Espiritu Santo Bay. Of course that is an “over exaggeration” but more or less sums up the state of the bay from a production based fishing guide. This year, Espiritu Santo is giving me a “June feeling” here in August. As I’ve mentioned before, everything is running late this year. In a report a while back I mentioned that the focus might stay on ESB deep into August because all of the patterns are running about a month late.
The FALL FORECAST is absolutely ridiculous as far as I’m concerned. Why? Because of the sleeping giant, San Antonio Bay. To this point, the only pressure placed on San Antonio Bay is from a handful of the bravest “white knuckle” Captains from Rockport. With the howling southwest winds, they are limited to the Aransas shoreline and nearby reefs. Mid-bay upper and lower shell has been virtually untouched and unfishable. When we break the cycle of this wind, San Antonio Bay is going to go off the charts in my opinion. The big assumption here is that we are going to get a break in the cycle of this unfavorable wind.
To top it all off, we are watching to see if bird action develops in the head of San Antonio Bay. This has been less than predictable in recent years primarily due to the unseasonably mild and dry winters. To correct another guides latest report this is actually a shad migration that triggers the bird activity in the head of the bay and not “white shrimp”. With the kind of spring and winter that we had, if it’s going to happen, it will happen this year. The action will concentrate at the base of Hynes and Mission Bay. Huge schools of Redfish will herd up under concentrations of migrating shad and the action can be outstanding. Trout will also take advantage of the shad and the biggest challenge after limiting out on Redfish will be to find working birds with Trout beneath them. I’ve already heard a report of Redfish under the birds in Hynes but there is no consistency to this point.
We are happy to be “booked-up” at our new lodge overlooking San Antonio Bay during the middle week of Teal Season 9/21 through the 23rd. We still have openings for the opening weekend of the 15th and 16th and the closing weekend of the 29th and 30th. Weekday dates are still fairly easy to come by.
The private facility overlooks San Antonio Bay and offers pre-arranged menus, open bar, and all the atmosphere and relaxation you can stand. While attending to the special needs of small private groups is a given, we consider corporate groups a specialty. The lodge is the ultimate location for off-site meetings and team building. The staff at the lodge provides the perfect backdrop for combining business and pleasure. From contests to conferences; audio-visual to meeting rooms; we make the arrangements that fit the specific and varied needs of the group. Let us take the “hassle out of hosting”. Our experience with numerous corporate groups insures that everything will run smoothly.
The facility will easily handle parties of 12 or less. Check out the new lodge at http://www.coastalwaterfowl.com/texas_trails.asp These multi-boat trips are batting nearly 1000 on Trout limits to this point and we look forward to continued success as we move into the fall season.
NOW IS THE TIME TO CONSIDER SEPTEMBER AND OCTOBER DATES. The “Blue-winged Rockets” of the north are right around the corner in September along with some awesome fishing Fall topwater fishing. We have recently picked up numerous new Dove hunting properties for our combination parties.
Check out the PICTURES from parties Saturday and Sunday on the website at http://www.coastalwaterfowl.com/gallery2f. TAKE A SECOND TO SIGN UP ON OUR E-MAIL LIST for the latest in the Coastal beat.
Capt. Kris Kelley