Anglers have lots to be thankful for
Dec. 3, 2011 at 12:03 p.m.
Updated Dec. 4, 2011 at 12:04 p.m.
It's hard to believe that this year is almost over, and, in just three short weeks, we will be celebrating Christ's birth.
It's a time we reflect back to all the things we have been given. It's a time to be thankful.
I'm thankful we didn't get a hurricane, but we still need lots of rain.
It's also still hard to believe I can fish thousands of acres of water all up and down the Texas Coast for the cost of a fishing license and an occasional boat launching fee.
For this, I am truly thankful.
If you haven't been to the Texas Coast the past few weeks, you have missed some of the best fishing so far this year.
Colder water temperatures have really sent a spark into the redfish and trout, especially trout.
Lure fishing has turned into high gear as trout up to 25 inches have been taken on a variety of imitation baits.
It happens every year, as soon as water temperatures stay from 58 to 62 degrees for a few days, the bigger trout begin to feed in preparation for winter.
Birds have been working in several different bays, feasting on migrating shrimp. Sometimes, you just see a few birds sitting on the water and not diving.
One quote that my clients have memorized is "never pass by a seagull sitting on the water."
Every time we stop, we always catch some speckled trout. They may not always be legal keepers but the trout are always close by.
When you see seagulls sitting in the water on top of shell reefs, you always catch keepers.
When talking about nonlegal keeper trout, this past month has broken all my personal records.
There are more 10-14 inch trout in the bays than I have ever seen. We have been releasing 100-150 trout per day back into the water.
Don't let anyone tell you that man has overfished or can overfish speckled trout. Trout will vacate a large area that has consistent boat traffic and not move up to eat until the evening or night time hours.
I can't understand why there are so many fish in the bays with the extremely high salinity levels. Once you think you halfway have the fish figured out, get ready for them to fool you again.
We have finally been catching solid trout from 18-25 inches on artificial.
At times, the topwater bite has been awesome. The two top producers have been the chartreuse-headed, white-bodied Super Spook Jr. and the chartreuse-headed root beer-bodied Super Spook Jr. These two baits have been the best in these colors.
The black with chartreuse tail Berkeley Gulp swimming shad has been working, but the biggest trout have been coming off the key lime gambler.
The gambler has got to be one of the best big trout baits on the Texas Coast. Make sure you use at least a ¼ oz. jig-head to make this bait work to perfection.
I know this is old news, but it is still crucial to remember. When wading and targeting bigger trout, you have to slow down.
Fish an area a long time before moving to the next spot.
Never walk and cast.
This time of year, speed wading will only bring you back to the boat with smaller trout or empty stringers.
Also, try to be in your favorite spot during a major feeding time. This will add to your confidence and help you to fish slow and move slow.
For those that read my last article a few weeks ago, I ended it with "to be continued."
Without going through the entire story, I mentioned seeing my cork that had been floating in the same area for the second day still with the fish beneath it. When I tried to catch it with my lure, it went under.
Well, 12 days later, I was in the same area, and, naturally, I had to tell the story to a new group of fishermen.
By now, the fish was probably dead or long gone.
You guessed it, one of my customers noticed a cork moving in shallow water. It was mine and not 30 yards from where the line initially broke.
Without even asking, everyone wanted me to make a beeline to try and catch my cork.
How exciting is this!
I finally got within casting distance as the cork began to quickly move. Nobody on the boat could believe it was still there and we were all waiting to see what was on the end.
I hooked the cork, reeled in the fish, and it was a 19-inch redfish.
That was one frisky little fish.
Now, my story had an ending. I took the hook out of his mouth and released him to fight another day.
Just another great adventure on the water!
Good Fishin,Captain Danny