If Jeff Poe had his druthers — and he does — he’d target speckled trout at one of his favorite destinations in November.
Turner’s Bay in Calcasieu Lake seems to always hold speckled trout and redfish in the next-to-last month of the year.
The owner of Big Lake Guide Service said the cove northeast of Cutoff Point was giving up speckled trout in early October.
But Poe said November should be even better, as far as speckled trout fishing success — wind and water conditions permitting.
“It’ll be mostly trout, but we catch some redfish there, too, sometimes lots of redfish,” he said.
It’s not a big-trout game in this part of the lake.
“For the most part, you can catch schooling fish,” Poe said. “Sometimes you can catch the birds working. You can catch almost anywhere in there.
“There’s a few hotspots, some lumps in there you can find, but there are oysters everywhere. It’s a good place for Joe Blow to go.”
Anglers can start by the Ship Channel or go all the way across to the wellheads on the north end of Turner’s Bay.
“You can fish the whole area in there — darned near a couple miles,” Poe said.
The best approach is to drift across areas. Outgoing tides are best, Poe said.
Based on his experience, the harder the tide, the farther away from the Ship Channel anglers should fish; the weaker the tide, the closer to get to the channel.
Poe said slack tides usually offer the top action with topwaters or suspending twitchbaits, such as Fat Boys, MirrOdines, SoftDines, etc.
“When you don’t have a lot of current, those seem to work a lot better,” he said.
Also try similarly colored topwaters, such as Thundersticks.
Poe said that, for some reason at that time of year, fluorescent colors like orange and pink are more effective.
Go-to baits most days, however, are soft plastics. Poe favors Lil Johns and H&H Sparkle Beetles. It’s hard to beat a clear/metal flake Lil John, he said, while salt-n-pepper, chartreuse and glow Sparkle Beetles take their share of fish in Turner’s Bay.
If possible, Poe uses an 1/8-ounce leadhead; the strength of the current dictates that.
If there’s a strong tide and the fish are hugging the bottom, as they do much of the early winter, try ¼- or 3/8-ounce leadheads with whatever soft plastic you’re using.
Whatever you use, keep it moving on the retrieve or it will get hung up in the oysters, he said.
Turner’s Bay has an advantage, in that should a cold front blow through the region, the north end is protected, Poe pointed out.