By the second week of October, a lake near Dularge will be giving up countless numbers of speckled trout.
It happens every year in Lake Mechant in four particular areas — and no one knows that better than Capt. Bill Lake, a saltwater fishing guide with 30 years of experience who owns Bayou Guide Service (985-851-6015 or 985-637-3712).
Lake and other anglers in the know were biding their time waiting for the speckled trout to finish their migration from near-offshore waters to inside waters by catching “a ton of redfish.”
In fact, on Sept. 6, Lake said his boat accounted for 150 redfish in five days. He already had his sights set on the following month, though.
“October, all we do is pretty much catch trout. I’m looking forward to it. Usually, by the second week of October, especially if we get a couple cool snaps, trout will show up in our area. A lot has to do with the shrimp,” he said, adding that shrimp in inside waters exit drains in the marsh with each and every cold front.
Lake had a heckuva summer fishing near-offshore waters. He and his clients caught 7,000 fish over the summer months while targeting the new Pickets artificial reef and Ship Shoal 28.
But he’s ready for the fall speckled trout bonanza to begin.
“Lake Mechant is red hot in October. Sister Lake, too, but Lake Mechant is our target area,” Lake said.
To get there, the most convenient access point is Jug’s Boat Launch at the end of Highway 15, he said. Just travel south on the bayou approximately 5 miles to a large intersection with Grand Pass. Go east and you’re in Sister Lake then turn right (west), and you’re in Lake Mechant.
While Lake Mechant is the place to be, the guide offered an extra tip on speckled trout opportunities in early October on the east side of the pass in Sister Lake, where birds often work over the area, mostly on a falling tide.
He advised anglers to position the boat about 100 yards out and fish with the staples of south central Louisiana — tandem-rigged Bayou Chub Minnows in purple/gold, chicken-on-a-chain or glow chartreuse on a ¼-ounce white/red eye leadhead or a natural-colored Vudu Shrimp 16 to 24 inches under a popping cork.
That’s one of the spots he checks on his way out this time of year, he said.
Otherwise, you’ll find him smashing speckled trout in one of four spots in Lake Mechant:
No. 1 – The mouth of Bayou Raccourci, a prime place to be at daylight. It’s a major migration route and often it’s no sweat to catch 40 to 50 speckled trout there, Lake said.
No. 2 – Just to the east of Bayou Raccouci, about 1 ½ miles, Deer Bayou is another body of water that flows into the lake. The results there can be similar, Lake said.
No. 3 – Fish Goose Bay, which is in the extreme northwest corner of Lake Mechant. Fish stack up there on a falling tide. When the tide is going out, Lake said the area is covered with shrimp.
No. 4 – Big Blue Hammock Bayou, which runs west from the lake to Four League Bay. Lake said it’s a deep bayou with a strong current. Just ride the bayou and look for flocks of birds working over the speckled trout. Go flock to flock looking for diving birds — a pattern that works the whole month of October. ,
On weekdays, the fishing pressure is slight most of the time. But on weekends, be prepared for lots of company.
If you’re interested in redfish, they’ll be inhaling gold spoons on the north shoreline of Lake Mechant. Often, he said, he’ll be fishing for speckled trout about 100 yards off the bank and the birds will start working right on the shoreline over schools of redfish which are in a feeding frenzy. A choice stretch of bank is between Bayou Raccourci and Goose Bay, he said.