OUTDOORS: Catch some sun, fish this spring break
If you were hoping for a sunshiny spring break, you may get your wish.
Forecasts for the coming week indicate lots of rays for pale winter skin and maybe even a chance to catch some fish.
"We were catching big trout in East Matagorda Bay before the cold front," said guide Charlie Paradoski. "As it warms, they will bite again."
Redfish action has been the best bet the past week with colder temperatures. Sloughs and guts with draining water has been a boon.
"If you could handle the cold weather, you could catch reds," guide Michael Rolf said. "But it was a cold boat ride."
Trinity Bay waders have enjoyed some of the heaviest trout of the year while wading mud and shell the past two weeks. Corkies, MirrOlures and some topwaters worked before the front.
"We released a lot of big trout," guide Jason Brumley said. "Those mild days before the front when the water warmed to the 60s made those big fish eat."
Anglers choosing to stay in the boat have found redfish in the sloughs on live bait. Black drum are beginning to make their run to the Gulf in the Ship Channel around the Texas City Dike. Cracked blue crabs and finger mullet have coaxed the black bullies.
In Port O'Connor, as tides return with the south wind, so will redfish in the back lakes.
"We have been wading with TTF Flats Minnows," said guide Harold Dworaczyk of Bay Flats Lodge. "Redfish have been good over the mud and grass."
Matagorda Seafood Fest set for Saturday
"Those Chesapeake Bay oysters?" I asked while watching a worker shuck shellfish in a D.C. restaurant
"Matagorda Bay," he replied. "You know where that is?"
Indeed, I do.
Matagorda Bay oysters are world-renowned, especially for their brine-sweet flavor. Seafood entrepreneur Buddy Treybig, a supplier of fresh oysters to restaurants across the United States, dreamed up the Matagorda Seafood Fest about four years ago to highlight the seafood industry in Matagorda County while creating valuable dollars to local schools and charities.
"I have worked Oyster Fest in Rockport for years," Treybig said. "Matagorda needed something like this to bring the community together - we have a lot to be proud of here."
I spoke to Treybig on Friday by phone while he was driving to the Rockport event.
"This thing (Seafood Fest) has grown every year," he said. "We have a good time and raise valuable dollars."
Tickets are $10 for a fresh seafood dinner of shrimp and oysters. Bands including Larry Joe Taylor will perform throughout the day, and streets surrounding the Matagorda Fireman's Hall will be lined with vendors displaying coastal wares.
Highlights of the event are the oyster eating and oyster shucking contests with cash prizes for first through third places. Treybig will have his shuckers opening fresh oysters throughout the day.
"There is no oyster like a Matagorda oyster," said Treybig.
I will have to agree.
Bink Grimes is a freelance writer, photographer, author and licensed captain. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.