Arguably the most underrated pattern along the entire Gulf Coast is throwing big, noisy topwater plugs to speckled trout as long as a man's arm during the late-winter and early spring months. It's a technique that delivers the largest specks of the year for anglers who focus on interior marshes before the fish move out to spawn.
Marsh Man Masson tagged along this week with veteran Hopedale guide Capt. Charlie Thomason to see how many fish they could catch on hard-plastics, but they totally lost count when the gorillas started crushing their MirrOlure She Dogs and C-Eyes.
Although they had a couple of smaller fish in the mix, they didn't catch a single throwback, and Thomason ended the day boating a 25-inch speckled trout with a massive belly. They didn't weigh it, but the anglers guessed the fish weighed north of 5 pounds.
The anglers fished out of Thomason's dock in Hopedale, and had to deal with an early morning breeze that built to a ferocious 22 knots by 8:30 a.m. The water was clean, despite the wind, and it was rising throughout the trip.
The hot bait of the day was a She Dog that Masson fished on a light-powered Castaway Skeleton rod teamed with a Abu Garcia Revo reel.
The hot inshore topwater action will last at least another month, until outside waters warm enough to attract the fish there for spawning. There are, however, some essential ingredients for success. Watch the video for all the details, and be sure to give it a thumbs-up and subscribe to Marsh Man Masson on YouTube.
Capt. Charlie Thomason can be reached at 504-278-3474.