Light winds, green tides make for better catches during holiday

July 6, 2014 at 2:06 a.m.

Wait long enough and the weather will change. That sounds like something Yogi Berra or Captain Obvious would say.

Nonetheless, we have waited long enough this spring and summer for good fishing weather and were finally rewarded this week. Light winds and green tides afforded heavy stringers just in time for the holiday weekend.

"Man, it's been tough," said guide James Plaag of Silver King Adventures in Galveston. "It's been tough everywhere, but the weather finally got good, and we slammed the fish."

Plaag said his boat enjoyed a great topwater bite over deep shell.

"They (fish) ate Bass Assassins and really ate She Pups around rafts of shad," he said. "We had trout to 5 pounds with the moving tide."

Fishing has been such a struggle, CCA STAR Tournament officials decided to release an unspecified number of additional tagged redfish to increase the odds of someone catching a prize and winning a new Ford truck and Haynie boat. At the conclusion of June, seven tagged redfish had been caught but not one angler was registered in the STAR. Early this week, two more reds were caught, but results are pending a polygraph test. CCA officials say there will be more than 60 tagged redfish willing to be caught up and down the coast for the remainder of the tournament, which runs through Labor Day.

Water cleared this week in Matagorda and validated what many seasoned captains know to be true: There are lots of big trout in East Matagorda Bay. Most guide boats caught and released at least one trout 5 pounds are better, with many posting multiple catches. Guide Mark Talasek's boat duped a 30-inch, 8-pounder while drifting in 5 feet of water.

"It was definitely the best week we have had in about three months," said guide Tommy Alexander. "We caught limits wading early in the week, then landed some big trout drifting in East Bay. It felt really good to find a consistently bite."

That sentiment was echoed in Port O'Connor as well. Calm winds allowed waders and drifters a shot at the vast shell reefs throughout San Antonio Bay. Dropoffs along the edges of the reefs held healthy trout on live shrimp, croakers and soft plastics. Along the south shorelines, sand and grass held both trout and redfish on topwaters and live bait.

Jetty anglers have produced good catches from Sabine to Port Aransas. Live shrimp under a popping cork has been good for trout, redfish and sheepshead while topwaters fished tight to the rocks fooled trout to 25 inches.

It's not fall, but birds have worked on Sabine and Calcasieu lakes. Small brown shrimp migrating through the bay have had trout and redfish shadowing their every move. Diving gulls have followed the frenzy and pointed the way to easy limits.

"It's been nice to see some easy days lately," said guide Kirk Stansel of Hackberry Rod and Gun. "The jetty is firing up and the birds have been working so we have enjoyed the good days."

Hopefully, this is the beginning of a solid pattern.

Bink Grimes is a freelance writer, photographer, author and licensed captain (



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