Volume 36 Number 5 - May 2016

Features

Anglers will flock to the Grand Isle surf this month in hopes of wading into some trout, but launch and Myrtle Grove to fish your way to the island — and ensure you have plenty of fish for da paaaw-ty.

“Good luck with DAT!” Artie laughed as Spencer and Doc unveiled their fishing plans at the “Pre-Memorial Day Paaaw-ty Luncheon” (which itself turned into a pretty nice paaaw-ty).

“Tell you what,” Artie continued while putting down his oyster po-boy and looking around with a chuckle. “We’re going with Plan B — OK?

Anglers today have the latest, greatest gear. But will the old equipment and tackle from decades past still catch trout?

My plan seemed simple enough: I wanted to fish with some old gear to see if it’d still function and produce the way I remembered.

By “old gear” I don’t mean ancient 100-year-old stuff but the stuff I grew up with. The old Mitchell 300s spun with monofilament line and shad rigs.

Different bass-fishing situations call for different kinds of fishing line. Know which ones fit where.

Monofilament, fluorocarbon and braided line — options are numerous, and while certain fundamentals definitely guide the decisions; there’s plenty of room for creativity and situation-specific uses. Maybe you’re trying to make a lure do something or not do something; perhaps, the habitat you’re fishing presents a concentrated set of considerations. In any case, understand that line choice can greatly impact your productivity.

While trout anglers along most of the coast have to resort to live bait this month, this guide knows plastics will still produce in Dularge. You just need to know where to go.

Capt. Travis Miller learned a few years ago that one of his favorite — and perhaps his favorite — platforms was going to be removed from his Dularge waters.

Miller caught beaucoup specks around this platform, but his Picket fish would only be a distant memory. 

Don’t turn around and go home when your favorite lake looks like chocolate milk. Instead, put your nose down and use these pros’ tactics to catch more bass.

When runoff makes the water murky, bass don’t give up on eating — so fishermen shouldn’t give up on catching them. 

You just have to understand how fish use different sensory elements from sight to sound to water displacement.

Although double-digit bass are all the rage at Toledo Bend, the huge reservoir is loaded with crappie. Here are locations, tips and tactics that will yield hefty limits of summer slabs.

It was the day of the full moon of May 2015, and New Iberia’s Shane Johnson was pumped.

“This trip could not have worked out better with timing,” the 43-year-old Toledo Bend guide said.

The Atchafalaya Basin’s unpredictable waters can drive anglers nuts, but this Jeanerette fisherman has it all figured out. Learn how he reads the waters to know when and where to catch limits of sac-a-lait.

“In a perfect world, it would be 10 feet on the Butte La Rose gauge with a slow fall, year around,” the rakish young man told me with an infectious grin. 

The Butte La Rose gauge on the Atchafalaya River is what most fishermen — whether for sac-a-lait, bass, bream or catfish — go by to decide when and where to fish the vast Atchafalaya Basin.

This Venice captain is, well, different. And that means he’s always looking for something new, so he’s on the forefront of recreationally caught swordfish. Here’s how he does it.

Xiphias gladius. Ahh; what a name for a fish!

Xiphius means “sword” in Greek, and gladius means “sword” in Latin.

The latter is also the root word for “gladiator.” A fish with a sword that fights like a gladiator — how could you not be hypnotized by the thought of doing battle with one. 

Secret spots aren’t needed to put the hurting on the trout out of Grand Isle. All you have to do is beat the crowds to one of the community holes. Here are some tips to maximize your efforts.

It was a sight to see in the dim light of dawn. There were untold thousands of birds.

Wide-bodied pelicans occupied every rock fringing the island. Many more of the big birds’ white-crowned heads stuck up out of the island’s grass.

There’s a lot of untapped fishing waters in the Bayou State — and you can’t get there with a boat. Learn how this Youngsville angler steps back in time and fishes like his dad taught him.

Scott Long has a fishing secret. He and his family discovered it years ago.

Everybody who fished used to know, but apparently Long is one of only a few who retained this knowledge. 

His secret?

Crappie fishing is still on fire at Toledo Bend and the Atchafalaya Basin this month, while speckled trout have invaded the coast. And we give you everything you need for success.