WOW!!!!! What a great Duck Season combined with some awesome Fishing. We were wore plum out by the end of January. The numbers were off the Chart. We had some great weather. COLD Fronts kept an influx of Ducks and Geese in the area, combined with plenty of food for them in our County made for a barn burner season. The Reds and Trout spun there annual webs Pre and Post Fronts. Which made for a Great Freeze Out Tournament. It’s a good format with some heavy sticks fishing it. Congrats to Jimmy Burns and his Fishing Team, Team Waterloo. Local Veteran Guide, Gary Gray had a monster trout and Big stringer that made for a close Tournament.
Hey, Goose Conservation Season is wide open. The Legendary Goose Guide, Captain Jake Huddleston is staying on the remaining snow geese, posting good numbers when the weather and geese cooperate. We conversed yesterday about the northern migration and he thinks we have a few weeks left. The great thing about Jake is he goes above and beyond to put you on the X.
How many of your hunting dogs are depressed now that hunting season is over? Ryder is so depressed he is seeing a Dog Counselor twice a week. Not Really, I am having to throw bumpers for him though to help ease him back into post waterfowl season. Retriever Trials are starting up around the State. I called up Captain Nathan Beabout a few days ago and he has pups that are on a Started Training Program and they will be ready to hunt by next waterfowl season. Believe me, if you are a busy person and want a great retriever, you need to get a deposit on them 2 puppies, quick! Capt Beabout is a fantastic duck guide/ hunter and knows how to get a retriever ready to duck hunt and make a life long hunting buddy. Purchasing a started dog gets you in on the ground floor of a pup without all the small headaches that come with a new dog, Teething, chewing, house training, etc.. If you are even slightly interested in a new Retriever by next season give me a call and I will get you in contact with Nathan.
January was a great month for Ducks, Geese and Fish. February is looking to be a Chart Topper as well. The Texas Trophy Trout Hunters are already posting Big Girls on line. Port Mansfield, of course Baffin, and Here on the Middle Coast are producing solid trout. Captain James Cunningham and I went on a Big Trout Mission today. Tops and Corkys were the bait of choice. Captain James took off on a deeper wade where he had guided a trip a few days prior. He started with a Baby Chrome Spook. I went shallow with a Black & Chrome 1 knocker. I usually don’t out fish the Master but the shallower bite was perfect for throwing top water baits. Capt James switched to his favorite Corky since the trout weren’t responding and immediately in 3 casts caught up with me. The Trout that were in the little deeper water wanted the slow sinker. We ended up the morning wade with our 5 apiece and only had 1 sow roll over my top water with no connection. Probably just as well so a battle wouldn’t have worn her out before she spawns in a few weeks. The February conditions are cycling like clock work. We are looking at another Cold Front so we are going back at it again tomorrow. Matter of Fact, The phone just rang and we are going on a road trip to Port Mansfield for some more Big Trout Hunting. See ya’ll back in a couple of days.
Now is a great time to book a top water wade fishing trip here at the Saltwater Lodge. The water is cool, the fish are very hungry and everyone knows now is the time to set a new personal best record or collect a wall hanger.
We are getting some dates booked up already for next year’s waterfowl season. Get your calendars out and let’s plan a trip.
Call Scott at 361 785 3825 and he will get you set up on a personal itinerary that meets your goals and budget.
Make long cast, Wade for ‘em and string a few.
When you can leave the dock and wade into a stringer of trout and reds on a clear water flat in the middle of February you know for sure that things are looking good in the fishing world of Port O’Connor, best known as the angling jewel at the end of the road on Highway 105.
Come hell or high water the one thing you can count on in Port O’Connor is fun fishing adventure during February and March. The water temperature is just right, fish are hungry and catching them can be a lot easier than what we’ll face during the hot summer months.
Some of the best places to find numbers of reds and trout are along the islands in 2 to 3 feet of water. Some of the top action will be in the South Pass area and the many backwater lakes down that way. These are areas that you can either wade or drift.
One of the best lures you can use right about now is a 5-inch Shad Assassin in glow/chartreuse or fire tiger. Another proven option is a Corky Fat Boy. The go to color is a glow/chartreuse.
Fishing jigs is the fastest way to find trout and reds feeding on the flats. This is a lure that you can fish fairly fast while covering a lot of water in a hurry. A 1/8 or 1/16 ounce jig head is best. After fishing the POC flats for over 40 years I’ve found that jig head color doesn’t seem to be a factor. An unpainted head seems to work just fine. What does seem to matter is the color of the tail.
A Corky Fat Boy has caught a heck of a lot of big trout over the past decade. But it’s a lure that can be tough to fish. It’s a slow sinker and one that you want to fish much, much slower than a jig. It’s a mullet imitation lure that mimics baitfish that big trout predominantly feed on during winter months.
Or course, there is no way we can get into winter fishing without talking up topwater lures. And the one that has been a go-to option for decades is a Super Spook. The One Knocker is very popular, as is the Spook Jr. Three excellent cold water colors are clown, pink/silver and bone/silver.
Here’s to good luck to you out on the water. And if you’re looking for an easy and relaxed day of fishing with an experienced guide give me, Capt. Robert Sloan, a call at 409-782-6796, email – email@example.com or check out my web site at www.luckystrikeguide.com.
Along our coastal regions of Texas, the month of February has been known to bring us some of the absolute coldest days of the entire year. That brings up a very crucial topic for this month – the importance of proper clothing. When it turns cold this month, the number of anglers out on the water will drastically be reduced simply due to the weather. February anglers will often enjoy a lot of peace and quiet, which also means they might be on their own for a long time in the event they might need some assistance for whatever reason. Experiencing an emergency while on the water can be tough enough without being cold, being wet, or being cold and wet. For this reason it is recommended you dress in layers, and take extra clothing on your next trip. You can always remove layers if you get too warm, but you can’t put on that which you don’t have. Just food for thought!
You should allocate more time than usual during February when scanning your wintertime fishing spots before you spend valuable time anchoring and exiting the boat. Once you’ve pulled into an area, use the first few minutes to examine the immediate area for baitfish activity, looking primarily for pods of baitfish (preferably mullet). You won’t always see the heavy bait action that you commonly see during warm months of the year, so learn to look for other signs like surface or tail swirls, slicks, diving seagulls, or any other kind of bird that looks like they may be simply sitting on the water. Those are all potential signs that a fish is eating, or has recently eaten, so pay close attention to the water’s surface.
Experienced coastal anglers know that a muddy bottom structure retains more heat than that of a sandy bottom, so anglers should search for trout in deeper water that’s lined with soft mud whenever it turns really cold this month. In these cold, muddy places you will need to work your artificial baits really, really slow because the trout tend to be especially lethargic in extremely cold water. Other places to pursue February trout are muddy areas along shorelines, coves, protected bayous, channels, and any other drainage-type places that feed water in or out of back lake spaces. And on those rare occasions of a high tide in February, make it a point to hunt for baitfish activity in some of the more remote regions of the back lakes while focusing your attention on the windward shorelines of the lakes.
With water clarity being another important factor, you may want to throw bright-colored baits in clear water, and dark colors in dirty water. Regardless, whenever targeting big February trout, try using some of the slow-sinkers like the Corky and the Fat Boy. Top waters have also produced well in February, so it won’t hurt tossing a wide variety of colors, but smaller sizes. Be warm, be safe, and have fun out there!
Capt. Chris Martin
Bay Flats Lodge, Inc.