Monday, August 29, 2005

Katrina Brings Some Water


Having been at ground zero for Claudette, a little Category 1 Hurricane two years ago, our thoughts and prayers are certainly with those dealing with Katrina at this time. One thing I learned then was what I’d always heard about a calamity like this and that is "the aftermath is worse than the storm itself". "True dat".

Anything I say in a fishing report now is already dated. With a substantial north wind and water push from Katrina, patterns have most certainly been altered. I’ll be leaving the known fish looking for new patterns to emerge "on what little window of high water" we may have. I’ll be looking for fish tighter to structure. Hopefully, we’ll get a serious flushing in the back country to set up the Fall run at Redfish. If we get to keep the water, it will be a blessing and possible hammertime. If it all falls out after Katrina subsides, it will be back to the patterns of mid-August. Best thing I’ve seen lately is Trout and Redfish mixing and running the back side of reefs on the mud side with a quick shell drop-off. Shrimp relate to mud and I believed that’s why they were there. This was quickly "shot down" when surveying stomach contents which contained Menhaden, and big ones. Why exactly the fish were hanging over mud is anyone’s guess.

Bowed-Up!
Capt. Kris Kelley
1-888-618-4868
http://www.portoconnorfishing.com/
http://www.coastalwaterfowl.com/

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Hitting The Beaches


We are in the process of recovering from low pressure coming out of the gulf and the full Moon and low water ills that have made Trout fishing a "white knuckle adventure". Last week, I pushed the envelope to limits with Harry Prewitt and son out of Houston throwing a combination of Croaks and Piggies over shell in about four feet of water tapering to two to three feet. We had very little wind Wednesday but the water had not recovered from past days of shredding and gutting. We got on a little bite that peaked long enough to get the job done. Thursday saw more wind gusting to 20 in the pre-dawn hours. I was hoping this was a "storm pop" but the wind stayed on us much of the day. This knocked us back down into the middle teens but everyone agreed it was worth the effort.

Reading more wind with the Low coming ashore Friday and the Bays inability to recover and settle, the Full Moon, the low water, I quickly retreated to Drum and Redfishing with Gary Carroll and family Thursday. The results buckled the knees at the boards and this was one fish box nobody wanted to lift out of the boat. Fishfinding crab on area shorelines kept us setting the hook throughout the morning on large Drum and middle slot Redfish. While this is no specialty of mine during this time of year, it seems to be a "day saver this year".

I recognize that Black Drum may not be a target fish for many. It is quite under rated with more popularity among fly fishermen than lure or bait fishermen. Here is an interesting insight into them for anyone interested. Black Drum are fast long distance movers. I can tell you from my experience airboat fishing the back country, Black Drum are super tide sensitive. Water levels in extreme shallows can fall a little or a lot with little effect on Redfish given constant warm temperatures. They move around the back and in extreme tide falls will hold up in small mud pockets "laying up" (very hard to catch). They may make a little run to the depths of deeper lakes or they may stay put. Redfish are comfortable either way. However, put a 2" tide fall in the back lakes and every Black Drum will leave them completely falling out on area shorelines adjacent to the depths of the Bays. On shorelines, they are similarly tide sensitive feeding better at times than others. When I’m looking for them, I cover the primary area from the grass on the bank to the bars and guts on the flat, and the secondary area off the break to the depths of the bay. Find them in the primary areas and the action will be reasonably paced. Find them on the break and the action will get rediculous.

With airboat Redfishing on the near term horizon starting late September into November, I’m looking for a Fall Tide. If you are thinking about trying this exciting style of fishing, now is as good a time as any to get it lined up. Give us a call when you get a chance.

Bowed-Up!

Capt. Kris Kelley
1-888-618-4868
http://www.portoconnorfishing.com/
http://www.coastalwaterfowl.com/

Monday, August 15, 2005

A Picture Is Worth Three Words


High wind and low water ills have reared their ugly head the last few days. All it takes is a picture to sum up Trout fishing pretty quickly. Redfish and large slot Black Drum have been taking up the slack. With low pressure diving all around us and sucking up the wind amid this "low water year", the big Drum can make the difference between setting the hook or hauling water. The fish are on the shorelines and off the breaks because they can’t get into the back lakes at this time. This is identical to what we ran into in June and it was the June "learning curve" that led us back to this here in mid-August. There is a little early bite followed by a shut down until about 10:00-11:00am. Between 10 and 1 is when I’ve been doing the best on these bruisers. Crab has been the go to bait and there is a ton of pin fish and other bait robbers. This pretty much rules out shrimp. When things start to "kick in" on this late bite, the bait stealers aren’t nearly as thick.

I expect Trout fishing to leap off the charts when things settle out a bit. Until then we’re going to have our hands full with high winds, low water, and a Full Moon. This should be interesting to say the least.

Bowed-Up!

Capt. Kris Kelley
1-888-618-4868
http://www.portoconnorfishing.com/
http://www.coastalwaterfowl.com/

Monday, August 01, 2005

Gals & Soft Hands


The best way to start off August, "how about Trout limits at 9:00am". It’s been either a "smoker" or a "rock, paper, chisel" out there lately. Today I welcomed Billy Kubiak and his daughter Melanie for a day of fishing. As usual, women can’t help but dominate the freelining game. Tractability and soft hands seems to be a consistent theme. I’ll never forget last year, I had two couples fishing with me. The gals were out fishing the guys about 7 to 1 and I literally had to put the "wives" in "timeout". Yeah, don’t think the boys have ever lived that one down!
Anyway, tides are super low and I was working well off the edges of everything today. Water was in good shape despite a little nagging WNW at 10 knots. San Antonio Bay is at minimum levels of marginal adequacy with regard to salt content. Lots of small fish and pockets of better fish nearby. I can’t get over this one spot, I call it "shut off" reef. It’s pretty unusual to get fish rolling just to have them wander off and go lock jaw. Shut Off Reef the last half dozen days has been good for 6 to 18 solid Trout and then "poof", there gone. As soon as this happens, it’s vaminos muchachos because they aren’t going to roll again.

Bait of choice lately has been Pigs on the medium small side freelined over medium depth shell.

Bowed-Up!
Double K
1-888-618-4868
http://www.portoconnorfishing.com/

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