by Capt. Adam Jaynes
The nearly daily deluge has cut in to fishing time dramatically and put a significant damper on the productivity of Sabine Lake. It has however afforded me the opportunity to sit down and type this article as well as take care of many other necessary tasks that get neglected when fishing on nearly a daily basis. Despite the almost incessant rain we have been able to take advantage of some fantastic fishing in the marsh when the weather allows.
A nice oversize redfish that fell for a 5" Wedgetail
Easy to sight fish in water this clear...
I have almost exclusively sight-fished over the last month and a half, a combination of both fly-fishing and conventional tackle. The water quickly returned to gin clear in the marsh after the massive flood that devastated Deweyville and surrounding areas. There is a tremendous increase in the amount of grass I am seeing in the ponds this spring versus previous years, which I believe is likely due to the very mild winter that we had as well as freshwater influx. Even better has been the number of redfish in the marsh. We have come across very few areas that have not been productive. It is always nice spotting the next redfish you are going to cast at before you have even landed the one on the end of your line!
Case in point. Victims of the Skinny Dipper
Another one released
If I have my choice I prefer to catch them on a fly rod when in the marsh however I realize that does not interest many of my customers. Conventional tackle works just fine if that is what you fancy. With the amount of grass that is present where I have been fishing we have been throwing mostly sliders. The redfish really cannot seem to resist them and they are fairly easy to keep out of the grass not to mention they cast easily. For the redfish that haven't been floating quite as high and areas with less grass a pink and white reds critter as been deadly as well. For the most part they have been very easy to spot as long as the sun is shining, which unfortunately has only been on rare occasions. The wind has not been much of a factor although it does make things much easier with a lighter wind, both on the angler and the operator of the push pole.
These are an absolute blast on the 8wt
I admittedly have missed out on some incredible picture opportunities due to our inability to resist casting at these fish while they have been waving their tails at us or cruising down the bank in larger schools. With our conventional tackle we have been doing both blind casting and sight fishing. Tossing a Heddon One Knocker has produced some of the most explosive blowups that I have witnessed, mostly from oversized fish in the 11-13lb range. When sight casting we have been using one of two swimbaits. Both the 5" Wedgetail from Egret or the Skinny Dipper from Reaction Innovations rigged weedless have been absolutely deadly. With the ultra clear water more natural colors have worked better such as the Black Mullet Wedgetail and the Pearl Blue Shad Skinny Dipper. I know Simon Outfitters in Orange has the Skinny Dipper and I am pretty sure that they carry the 5" Wedgetail there as well. Be careful visiting the Reaction Innovation website as your wife or significant other might sit you down for some questioning due to the name of most of their baits. If you want to know what I mean, visit their site.
Another oversized red on the Skinny Dipper
Very easy to see in crystal clear water especially when they're glowing like this!
If you venture into the marsh please be considerate to your fellow anglers, as you should any where for that matter, but also please be considerate to the environment. "Burning" is absolutely not appreciated and severely damages the grass, leaving the ponds looking much more like a chopped up salad.