There’s a stretch of the Sabine River that gives up beaucoup bass in the heat of August. In fact, Lake Charles outdoorsman Ron Castille said it’s one of his go-to place for late summer for several reasons.
The former television fishing show host had plenty of good things to say about the stretch below Interstate 10 and above the Intracoastal Waterway near Orange, Texas, and the old Burnt Out Bridge.
The bridge was part of the old U.S. 90. Someone torched it years ago, and the burnt pilings can be seen to this day.
Anglers have the option to fish man-made structure — wooden pilings and such — along the shoreline (particularly on the Texas side) or marshy areas for about three miles on the Louisiana side.
Castille said the lagniappe is that anglers have a chance to record a Cajun grand slam, because bass, redfish, speckled trout and sometimes flounder inhabit that stretch of the Sabine River.
Traditional bass lures will take all of these species, he said.
He enjoys catching bass after bass there, noting it’s best early and late.
“It’s going to be a great place to catch numbers, not necessarily quality,” said Castille, adding limits of fish in the ¾- to 11/2-pound range are common.
A 3-plus pounder, he said, is a “good fish” down there.
However, anglers launching on the Texas side must adhere to Texas fishing regulations, including possessing a Texas resident or nonresident fishing license. And, until Sept. 1, that means a 14-inch minimum length limit on bass for anglers accessing the river from Texas.
One of the best things the stretch of river has going for it in the dog days of summer is it is a tidal area, which means the water’s normally moving, and moving water is a boon to bass-fishing prospects in the heat.
Around structure, Castille likes to fish with crankbaits that dive about 4 feet deep. His favorite color combinations have red or orange bellies, dark or light green on the top and are shad-colored on the side.
He also throws spinnerbaits, mostly chartreuse/white with a white or chartreuse soft plastic trailer.
Other artificial lures that pull bass from those structures include wacky worms fished on light line and your favorite topwater.
However, if you tie on a topwater, tie it to heavier line because 10- and 12-pound redfish have a way of breaking lighter line, Castille said.
On the Louisiana side, especially around the Burnt Out Bridge, fish the cuts in the marsh because there are more trees on that side, he said.
Flip or pitch soft plastics under a 3/16-ounce worm weight or, if it’s overcast, try chartreuse/white spinnerbaits and shad-colored crank baits.