Was down at Baffin this weekend with a buddy of mine fishing a small club tourney.. nothing serious. Just about 10 guys making bets and side pots and also trying to get each other on fish as well. Good group of guys.
Got down early to do some scouting and had some areas in mind... right about the time we got to the ramp and ready to launch, I checked the radar and there's another big band of rain headed our way... It was blowing East at 20 anyway, not optimal and I'm not a fair-weather fisherman by any means but I'm not going to be unsafe with orange bands of rain headed my way on Baffin. Scouting was not going to happen and we were going to have to wing it. Saturday was a grind and pretty much ended up being my scout day just as it was for the other guys in the club as well.. Myself and one of the most seasoned members both found what we were looking for right about time to go hit the weigh tables... we'd have to see what produces for Sunday.
Sunday wind predictions are for NE wind beginning at 4am at 15-18mph.. increasing to 30 around 9am. I picked my best spot with a fairly protected run, albeit a little longer than I wanted to make. Got there and the bait was still there and so were the fish. I knew we'd catch a few nice fish, hopefully enough for the win, or at least todays big trout or redfish side pot. They were positioned in the shallow mud and grass feeding on mullet getting pushed off the flat by the increasing wind. For a full moon, they sure were getting it done.. probably knowing that it was going to be a couple days before feeding again. They ate.
I also knew that with the not so great weather and short wave period that they might not hit a top as readily, although we did have some blowups but all were short, I went subsurface pretty quick, going with a Corky Devil in Black... Caught a small trout right off and the split ring must have been in the wrong position and he removes the trebble for me. LOL. Funny thing.. I didn't notice until 2 cast later...LOL.. I wasn't even fishing with a HOOK!!! LOL.
I switched to the Tx Chicken Devil and started grinding away workin my way up to fish the structure where I thought they'd be. Wading a wide arc up and across so I could present the bait to the most fish and not walk right through it. Approach is very important. The first fish, the 25", hit and I immediately set the hook and then immediately felt nada.."what?, I was on point, no way I missed that fish"... reel reel reel.. she's still on and was running right for me. The fight ensued but she wasn't getting off. Brought her to the boga and it was a done deal... except she tore up my already 'hurting' TxChicken Devil. It was on it's last leg anyway from those **** Matagorda trout. I switched to a FatBoy Floater in TxChicken and kept at it. Not 5 minutes later the second fish hit and she just barely kissed it down below the surface...not like a big trout, but I've had this happen before.. set the hook and she starts peeling drag.
All in all I ended up with 4 trout to 26. She went 6.25 on the boga at 26 inches. She was fatter than the 25 and a full pound heavier even though only an inch longer. These fish are by far NOT my biggest but on these conditions I was stoked to get the bites I did. Shortly after the second fish the wind increased to north at 25, with gust to 30+. Still lost another head shaker on the Floater and missed a couple more bites. Rounded out the day with a slot red as well. It was enough to take the side pot for both big trout and red for the day.
Shallow mud and grass with bait being blown off the flat into their waiting jaws.
TxChicken Mirrolure Paul Brown Devil and Floating Fat Boy was best on producing the bigger fish. I was working both the devil and the floater fairly slow with a slow walk for 3-4 feet followed by a slow long pull, and slow walk with pauses. We also had some fish in the group caught on TxChicken Broken Backs, as well as a few on Chicken Boys Shrimp - Chicken on a Chain. As the bite died from the FatBoys I was just about ready to put on my Controlled Decent rat tails but my partner waved and it was time to head to the ramp. These would have been perfect to finish out the area had I had more time.
If you're going to fish in conditions like this, make sure you know what the weather is going to do and how you are going to return safely. I always look and give more weight to offshore forecast than I do to inshore forecast. If the inshore forecast is for 12 and the offshore forecast is for 25-30.. it's probably going to be closer to the offshore forecast and that's what I plan for. Don't be misled by wind models that include trees and buildings for the everyday person inland. You'll be in the elements and need to plan of the worst and pick where you are fishing and how you're getting there and getting back and don't be naive about how bad it can be.. There were other great spots I wanted to fish that day but no way would I have put myself in those conditions where they were located.
This little cold snap will drop the surface temp and might keep the trout from spawning until the April window.. hope they hold off and stay heavy.
These fish were caught with classic technique for locating and catching big trout straight from the Big Trout DVD
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