Conditions this afternoon are cold, damp, windy and generally pretty miserable along La. Hwy 1 between Grand Isle and Fourchon, but big speckled trout are biting, and that’s a good enough reason for Tommy Vidrine to brave the elements.
“It ain’t for the faint of heart,” he said with a laugh from inside his truck during a break Friday afternoon. “There’s not many people out here - just a couple of fishing fools like me.”
Vidrine said the strong east wind associated with the cold front that moved through last night has left the west side of La. 1 extremely low, he said.
“If you would see this, it would blow your mind. These canals on the west side, you can see 5 feet of mud along the banks and oysters are everywhere,” he said. “That’s the lowest I’ve ever seen it. All these fish are coming in these pits trying to stay warm in these deeper holes.
“You can’t throw a cast without getting a bite.”
Redfish are so plentiful that he switched from the Tsunami softbait he was using to a suspended twitch bait that has been effective for the fish he loves to target: big speckled trout.
“We didn’t catch them every cast, but I bet I caught eight or nine 4-pound fish,” Vidrine said. “I would probably have a 20-pound stringer of five fish.
“In the wintertime, that’s phenomenal.”
The twitch bait, which resembles a mullet and looks like a large topwater bait, suspends about 2- to 3-feet beneath the surface.
“There’s a lot of big fish in there now, and they’re eating the bigger bait,” he said.
To find a spot along the road, Vidrine said he looks for mullet and cormorants.
“If the cormorants are in there, most likely the finger mullet are in there,” he said. “And if the finger muller are in there, the trout and redfish are, too.”