Fishing

Dave Cavell (left) and Corey Wheat teamed up to win Claire's Heart benefit tournament in the Atchafalaya Basin by banging vibrating jigs off stumps around main points.

Stay off the banks for Basin bass, anglers say

Prairieville's Dave Cavell and Gonzales' Corey Wheat teamed up to win Claire's Heart benefit tournament last weekend, and the pattern wasn't what they expected.

"We thought we'd catch them punching," Cavell said. "That's how Corey caught them practicing."

Instead, they had to back off the banks, and turn away from heavy flipping rigs.

1 hour ago
Capt. Eddie Berthelot Jr. favors cocahoe minnows under a popping cork or tight-lined Matrix Shad for January speckled trout in Catfish Lake out of Golden Meadow. <br />

Slow it down for wintertime trout

By January, speckled trout have settled into the interior marshes around Golden Meadow to ride out the winter, and Capt. Eddie Berthelot Jr. knows where to go to find them.

8 hours ago
Al Siener, an Army veteran who works in Afghanistan for a military contractor, relaxes when he’s home by kayak fishing.

On a mission

Some say laughter is the best medicine. Mathew Roberts and Shawn Babin say adding in a dose of kayak fishing is even better.

Several years ago, Roberts, Babin and a couple of friends were getting more and more involved in kayak fishing. They started an informal group they call the Troll Squad.

Yesterday at 4:00pm

VIDEO: Why PFDs and kill switches are important

We all know we're supposed to use them. It's just Boating Safety 101. Yet we all too often get in a hurry or become complacent, and leave the life jackets in the locker or sitting on the seat as we zip from one fishing hole the next. And too many anglers don't even think about kill switches.

Because nothing is going to happen to me, right? But the fact is accidents happen — and we never see them coming.

This video of two young anglers heading out for a bass tournament shows just how fast things can go wrong and why safety equipment is vitally important.

Yesterday at 8:00am
Indiana resident Steve Schmitt caught this 20-plus-pound redfish on a recent trip with Capt. Shawn Lanier out of Venice.

Downriver redfish

Capt. Shawn Lanier (225-205-5353) said he pretty much swims against the flow this month.

January 16 at 11:38am
Frank Canizaro Jr. shows off the first lunker bass of 2017 — a 10.55-pounder he caught on Jan. 11 in the Huxley Bay area pitching a black-neon V&M Flatline jig.

Mansfield angler scores on Toledo Bend 10.55-pounder

Mansfield’s Frank Canizaro Jr. and his fishing buddy Andrew Pilcher initially set out on Toledo Bend’s waters near Huxley Bay on Jan. 11 in search of crappie.

January 16 at 9:40am
Nitro’s Z19 pro package bass boat features a NITRO Vortex Technology hull that carries a 10-year warranty.

Nitro Z19

The Z19 is a latest offering from Nitro, a member of the White River Marine Group built in Clinton, Mo. Nitro specializes in high-performance freshwater fishing boats. At 19-foot-4, the Z19 is the smallest of their Z models available in the pro package for a package price that should be in the range of many budgets and exceed expectations.

January 15 at 7:00am
The Stratos 186 VLO is rated for up to a 135-horsepower outboard.

Stratos 186 VLO

The Stratos 186 VLO is one of the latest offerings from the Flippin, Ark.-based boat builder. They are packaged with features and options, plus accessories, requested by serious fishermen.

January 15 at 7:00am
The BlackJack 256 is a good-looking bay boat that can fish like a jumbo-sized flats boat.

BlackJack 256

The BlackJack 256 is the flagship of the BlackJack line of high-performance bay boats. Constructed by skilled craftsmen in Knoxville, Ark., the 256 is the largest of the BlackJack models and is made for the fisherman who wants to push the boundaries of the bay boat and explore bigger waters. 

January 15 at 7:00am
The Blue Wave 2400 Pure Bay has a tremendous amount of storage and great creature comforts for a bay boat.

Blue Wave 2400 Pure Bay

The Blue Wave 2400 Pure Bay is the flagship at Blue Wave and embodies the latest in modern bay-boat design and construction. The Seminole, Okla., boat-builder set out to design the ultimate 24-foot bay boat and followed that mandate well this time. 

January 15 at 7:00am
The Nautic Star 227 XTX has plenty of features for casual and tournament fishermen.

Nautic Star 227 XTS

Fishermen will find a lot to like about with the 227 Xtreme Tournament Series bay boat from Nautic Star in Amory, Miss. This is the newest addition to Nautic Star’s XTS series; it offers standard features like forward and aft fishing decks, 3-across jump seats aft, a deluxe leaning post, a dash big enough for 12-inch electronics, and an optional console large enough for a head.

January 15 at 7:00am
The Bay Ranger 2350 combines family friendly features in a serious saltwater-fishing vessel.

Ranger 2350 Bay Ranger

The 2350 Bay Ranger from Ranger Boats in Flippin, Ark., is a serious bay boat, yet also brings an innovative, family-friendly, do-it-all inshore/offshore design to all kinds of anglers. The 2350 packs a bunch of features, is rated for 300 horsepower and has impressive performance in terms of speed and economy. 

January 15 at 7:00am
The Shearwater 260 was two years in development before production began.

Shearwater 260

The Shearwater 260, the newest boat in Shearwater’s line, is a product of two years of development to establish a new standard in bay boats. Built by American Marine Sports in Groveland, Fla., the 260 includes more fishing-friendly and creature-comfort features than any other bay boat.

January 15 at 7:00am
The Tideline 235 Hybrid is a catamaran that is at home offshore or in skinny water.

Tideline Boats 235 Hybrid

As the only catamaran, the Tideline 235 Hybrid is the odd boat out in this review. Don’t take that to reflect anything negative; it may be a strong positive. The hybrid designation of the 235 is different, too. It was designed from the beginning to fish inshore and offshore equally well. Some boats make similar claims but are found to be lacking at one end of the spectrum; this one isn’t.  

January 15 at 7:00am