Lack of rain turns northshore rivers into spotted-bass hotspots

Tangipahoa, Tchefuncte rivers among great float-fishing options for Kentucky bass.

Todd Masson

November 05, 2012 at 9:24 am
Video Included Video Included  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 


Joe Lavigne catches dozens of spotted bass (aka Kentucky bass) on fall float trips down the rivers on Lake Pontchartrain's north shore.
Todd Masson
Joe Lavigne catches dozens of spotted bass (aka Kentucky bass) on fall float trips down the rivers on Lake Pontchartrain's north shore.
The autumn is, far and away, Joe Lavigne's favorite time of year to fish the north shore's rivers.

The fish seem rejuvenated after the blistering temperatures of summer, and the high water levels and turbidity from summer thunderstorms have protected them from human predation.

Also, many other "river rats" are focused on hunting, and couldn't care less about chasing anything without fur or feathers.

So Lavigne usually has any particular river all to himself. If he's fishing solo, he'll have his wife drop him off at one point in the river, and pick him up X hours later at a designated point downstream. Lavigne has learned the rivers well enough to know precisely how long each float should take.

If he's fishing with a partner, they'll leave one truck at the take-out point, and use the other to get to the put-in spot. After the trip, they'll drive back up to the upriver truck.

Lavigne doesn't bust his butt to get to the river early this time of year.

"A lot of times, these fish bite best in the middle of the day," he said. "I like putting in around 9 a.m., and I'll catch my fish anywhere from then to about 3 or 4 o'clock."

The action on these rivers is fantastic this time of year, and limits are more the rule than the exception.

Check out the attached video to get a taste of the action and hear Lavigne talk about strategies for success.

Read more fishing reports — and post your own — in the LouisianaSportsman.com Fishing Forum. Not a registered member of the site? It’s free, so click here to get started today!




View other articles written Todd Masson