When July rolls around, Capt. Curtis LeNormand said speckled trout action typically picks up at the Empire Jetty.
“Live shrimp under a cork, or any kind of plastic bait under a cork will work,” said LeNormand, with Curt’s Fishing Charters (504-616-2064) in Buras. “H&H cocahoes, Vudu shrimp or Matrix Shad all work, but the easiest is live bait.”
With summer temperatures now consistently pushing the mercury well into the 90s, LeNormand said to plan your trip to the jetty at the end of the Empire Channel accordingly.
“July is usually kind of an early bite and a late bite,” he said. “Midday it gets pretty hot, so it’s not always that great then.”
The inside of the jetties are currently closed off with a sandbar, but LeNormand said working the outer edge of rocks on both sides can be productive.
“You can just fish along the rocks, but sometimes when it’s hotter, the trout might get off so they might be a little deeper,” he said. “Some people anchor up, some people troll down the rocks. I’ve caught them 20 feet off the rocks, and I’ve caught them where you have to throw on the rocks. Usually in July, early in the morning, they’ll probably be up kind of tight.
“I prefer an incoming tide there fishing for trout. An east wind is not too bad, but avoid a southwest wind — it blows right into the jetties and can get choppy.”
If you don’t like to fish with a popping cork, LeNormand said to be wary of the jetty rocks, which are known to consume vast quantities of jigheads.
“I have caught them tight-lined,” he said. “Just don’t let it sink down all the way — maybe only a foot or two — then bounce it back in.
“But most of the time, people throw a cork with live shrimp.”
As always, the level of the Mississippi River this month will play a role in the jetty bite.
“The lower the river, the better everywhere,” LeNormand said. “I hope it’s around 6 or 7 feet. When it starts getting to around 5 feet, that’s when it gets good.”