The first part of last week kept us at the dock. The cold front that rolled through, had the winds up near 30mph. Needless to say, we rescheduled or canceled all of our trips in hopes of better weather. By Wednesday, we had enough wiggle room to get out, and fish on some near shore trips. Capt Kenny and I had the Middleton Group out for a fun one. We fished from one end of the coast to the other. The NW winds were blocked from the land and we found fish at most stops. Very few trout, but we got plenty of sheepshead, drum, along with a few slot and rat reds. Big fish of day, that is still being argued, was a massive Jack Crevalle. He was on my boat, but Kennys boat said it had to be an eater. No one told us, but since Mr Mark was gonna buy dinner either way, we just called it a draw.
Thursday, Friday and Saturday, we got some nice weather and great fishing. Plenty of the Shore Thing regulars have been getting in on the great fall bite. Milton, Harriet and Fancy Nancy have been back down. Blaise Ernst with Lincoln Finacial has enjoyed some fun with clients and friends. Harlen Massey is getting in on it before hunting season. Even AJ Jackson and Madeline Tonti have come back for fall trips.
The two boat Middleton crew along with 3 other crews were out Thursday for a good ole fashion skull dragging. The LA Marsh was alive with bait jumpin, birds diving, and trout feeding. Two of the guys in my boat had never caught big bull reds. Got to check that one off the bucket list several times before the end of the day. Our boat and Capt Kennys boat stumbled into big schools of huge bulls in separate areas of the marsh. We had the bulls doing laps around the boat, it was something to see. All the boats came in mixed bags of trout and most had close to 40 specks and many whites. The reds and black drum were mixed in the boxes as well.
The Palmer crew from Hattiesburg, I had on Friday, was long overdue for a good trip. Me and Mr Mike have been weathered out 4 or 5 times over the past year. Finally got it right, on the weather and the fishing. Trout bite was steady most of the day, and we did go looking for looking for some reds. Snuck in one small lagoon and grabbed plenty slot sized reds. When we were leaving the drain that brought us in there, the mouth of it was packed full of huge black drum. Broke off a few, but landed 4 sea monsters for the photo and release. Capt Jimmy Ray, fishing with Mr Harlen Massey came over to join the fun too. They even found a few bull reds on the outside of the school.
Capt Alex had the hot hand on Saturday and did very well on the sparkle trout. Fishing in 3 foot of water, over shells, he got 50 good trout for the Zinger crew. They even had time to go catch some reds back in the ponds. Capt Tom put a hurting on the whites and specks with the Nettles boys, it was impressive. Capt Matt was getting done as well with the Jackson crew. I was a few minutes late to all the trout rallies these guys were on. Was able to get David and Matthew Hathorn a few, but it was painful to be on the tail end of the bites. Had to clean it up on the red fish. Was able to take them sight fishing for slot reds, and it was awesome. Took the gloves off, and just used bare 3/8 ounce jig heads with live finger mullet. Must have seen close to 40 fish and we missed our fair share. Did have a nice rally though, those fish were hungry. If you got that mullet anywhere near them, they charged it and inhaled them.
Saturday, we saw more boats than we have seen in months, out in the LA Marsh. Most everyone played nice, but we did have a few boats not playing well with others. None of us own the water, or the fish out there, and there is no reason why we cant share the bounty. Capt Tom literally almost got run over by a boat while he was on anchor. He said the Capt must have been on auto-pilot because he never saw him waving at him when he passed 20 feet from him(full throttle). A few of the other boats had other boaters come in hot and roll them in shallow water, while on fish, shutting down bites. Drift in or use the trolling motor if you can. Running the big motor or throwing a big wake in shallow water will almost always scatter a school of fish/bait. Also, when leaving an area with other boats fishing and or catching, drift out, trolling motor out, or if necessary, idle out. There are plenty of fish and places to fish out there. Please be courteous to others, stepping down from the soap box...
The bites have been pretty good and we have been using two main things. Boat Monkey Popping corks to find the schooling fish, and double rigs to crank out the numbers. The Matrix soft plastics have been our go to baits. Color has not been much of a factor on the trout. I was standing on the dock on the other morning looking at the other boats tackle. The colors I saw were pearl, chartreuse, black, pink, motor oil and clear. Not so much what color what you throwing on these bites, but where you are throwing them. For the red fish, the same popping cork rig is used. Either tip the soft plastic with dead shrimp or take the soft plastic off and put on a live shrimp or finger mullet. Strike King Red Fish Spinner Baits have been doing well too.
Gotta thank a few folks for letting Shore Thing come speak at events this past Thursday evening. Big Thank You to the whole gang at the Gulf Coast Research Lab in Ocean Springs, MS. This is the third seminar(Catch More Fish With Science) that we have been a part of this year. Extremely informative talks from the scientist at the lab, and we of course get to talk about fishing.
Also got to spend a very windy Tuesday at Coast Episcopal Elementary in Pass Christian, MS. Since our talk in the 1st Grade class was so well received, we got invited to my daughters Pre-K class for F week(FISH). With the help of my 5 year old daughter, we kept 30 something youngsters captivated with pictures and stories of fish we catch in the Gulf of Mexico. Great day off the water...
Still got boats open most days, if anyone wants to go fishing. Big groups and small groups welcome.
****SHORE THING FISHING CHARTERS****
The Largest inshore fishing company on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Specializing in speckled trout, redfish, flounder, tripletail, black drum and more! We fish the Louisiana Marsh, the Mississippi Barrier Islands and many other areas. Our full-time fishing guides are extremely knowledgeable, courteous, and professional. We have many boats available - small and large groups are welcome. Anglers under the age of 13 fish for free! All of our boats and guides are licensed to fish in Mississippi and Louisiana. We supply rods, reels, tackle, snacks, drinks, ice, fuel, bait, and fun. No charge for fish cleaning and bagging. Be sure and ask about our all inclusive overnight fishing packages to the Cat Island House. www.shorethingcharters.com or 228-342-2206.
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