Bait Inc., Fisherman's Friend in Chalmette open for business
Live shrimp available; check with marina's to ensure they are accessbile.
David Dixon at Bait Inc. works his bait tanks. Dixon said the marina is up and running, and even has live shrimp.
Bait Inc. and Fisherman's Friend Bait Shop even have live shrimp available for their customers.
Bait Inc.'s David Dixon was manning the store (504-277-3755) yesterday (Sept. 6), and he said the store and bait shop never flooded.
The parking lot flooded, but the water never came over the slab of the store or the bait shop,” Dixon said. “When we rebuilt last time we shot an elevation and poured the slab here the same height as the bridge right there in front.
“The water will have to get pretty high to flood us now.”
And he said the building sustained no real damage from the winds, either.
“We were very lucky this time,” Dixon said. “A lot of our fellow marina operators didn’t fare as well.”
Half a mile away at Fisherman’s Friend Bait Shop (318-422-9734), Tony Cuccia said his place took about 30 inches of water and half a foot of swamp mud, but they’ve got everything cleaned up and fully operational again.
“The parking lot was a mess, but its usable now,” Cuccia said. “The backdowns are clear, and we cleaned our dock and store and bait tanks and caught some shrimp, and we’re back in business.”
Dixon said he ran the boat all over the area over the last couple of days and found the water dirty almost everywhere.
“I said almost everywhere, but not everywhere,” he clarified. “The water is actually beautiful in Violet. I tested the salinity over there, and its high, the water is clear and I know the area all around the Castle has to be loaded up with speckled trout.”
He said the fishing situation should improve quickly.
“The Lake in Violet is really clearing up, and I expect the rest of the water out here to clear up in the next few days,” Dixon said. “It stays dirty for a while after these major blows and surges, but once it settles down and cleans up the trout and redfish action really turns on.”
Besides the Castle, look for some good speckled trout action along the ICW at the Pipeline Canals, in the marsh between the MRGO and the ICW, around Proctor’s Point — and don’t forget the Wall.
“The action fell off around the Wall over the summer, but a blow like this pushes the salty water in and flushes the old water out,” Dixon said. “It brings the shrimp into the inside, and that brings the fish that eat the shrimp inside, too.”
That makes this a great time to load up the livewell with some frisky live shrimp and go do some exploring. Dixon warned that anyone getting out on the water should be watchful, however.
*Be sure to look out for logs, timber and other storm debris in the water,” he said.
NOTE: The Bayou Bienvenue Locks were closed as of early this morning (Sept. 7) due to high water, but should be reopening any time. Call the marinas to check on updates.
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