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Capt. Nick Poe uses an anchor caddy system designed by his dad Jeff to keep his anchor within easy reach. It's simply a piece of 3- or 4-inch PVC pipe bolted vertically in a convenient location on the deck.

PVC pipe keeps anchor accessible and ready

Capt. Nick Poe isn’t necessarily a fan of the look of his dad’s PVC pipe anchor caddy system that’s a fixture on many of the boats at Big Lake Guide Service, but he can’t really argue with its effectiveness.

January 19 at 5:06pm
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.

January 18 at 10:24am
Harold Schoeffler is especially alert for feeding slicks that indicate the presence of a school of feeding speckled trout in open water.

Say alert when trolling for speckled trout

While trolling can seem monotonous, it’s just as important to stay alert with this fishing technique as with others, Harold Schoeffler cautioned.

January 15 at 7:00am
“Black liquor” released into the West Pearl River by the Temple-Inland Paper Mill led to the deaths of thousands of fish in 2011.

The black Pearl — Pearl River fishing recovers from Temple-Inland Paper Mill spill

A black pearl is one of the rarest of gems. But in August of 2011, Louisianans found their beloved Pearl River became black.

But it wasn’t a gem. It was a stinking mess. 

January 15 at 7:00am
Matrix Minnow results can put a smile on the face of anglers young and old.

The Matrix Minnow

One good hard bait deserves another, and that is what Chas Champagne of Slidell has done with the introduction this month of the Matrix Minnow.

January 13 at 4:00pm
Capt. Eddie Berthelot Jr. caught this beautiful 'leopard redfish' Sunday morning, Jan. 8, in the Pointe-aux-Chenes area using a live cocahoe minnow under a popping cork.

Guide lands Golden Meadow ‘leopard red’ Sunday morning

EDITOR'S NOTE: Capt. Eddie Berthelot Jr. reports the leopard red has a total of 670 spots - 342 on one side, and 328 on the other. 

As a fishing guide on the water regularly out of Golden Meadow and Grand Isle, it should come as no surprise that Capt. Eddie Berthelot Jr. has literally caught thousands of redfish.

But never one as special as the fish he reeled in Sunday morning about 10:30.

January 09 at 10:47am
Capt. Travis Miller says specks gang up in deep holes around Dularge when the mercury drops.

Video tactics for wintertime specks

Watch this video to learn how to catch cold weather speckled trout, when fish stack up and move into deeper holes to find warmer water. 

January 06 at 9:51am
Capt. Travis Miller has been catching scattered speckled trout around Dularge, but expects them to start ganging up in deep holes with this weekend's frigid temperatures.

Weekend cold snap will concentrate Dularge trout

Many anglers see cold weather as a problem, but Capt. Travis Miller sees wintry conditions as a solution to a problem.

January 06 at 9:21am
Capt. Travis Lovell took this photo of a dead sperm whale carcass tied to a bulkhead in Sister Lake on Dec. 28. The whale had beached itself on a barrier island and was dragged out to sea, but its body was initially discovered on Dec. 3 near Turtle Bayou.

Guide’s photo of dead sperm whale goes viral

Sister Lake is known for nice speckled trout and redfish, but nothing as big as what Capt. Travis Lovell photographed last month in Terrebonne Parish. 

January 05 at 2:08am
January might be nippy, but it offers really nice trout without making long runs.

Deep Delacroix

I was surprised to hear Captain Ron “Ahab” Broadus (504-914-6063) say January was one of his favorite months to fish.

“It’s cold, it’s miserable, it’s windy — what can you possibly like about January?” I asked.

January 04 at 9:53am
Chas Champagne, owner of Matrix Shad soft plastic lures, keeps a close eye on the tides via a USGS website to catch big Lake Pontchartrain speckled trout.

USGS website provides real-time info on water conditions

Traditional lunar tables are great to give you an idea of high and low tide predictions for your general area, but localized weather conditions — especially wind — can have a big impact on tidal flow.

January 04 at 8:57am
Speckled trout are the all-around outdoorsman’s favorite fish. Note the Mann’s Sting Ray Grub on the rod.

Finders keepers — Secrets to trolling for Cypremort Point trout

Like gold, speckled trout are where you find them.

Ahh, but that’s the rub: finding them.

They are aggressive fish — not that hard to catch, but you gotta find them. Like roving wolves, they are mobile, and they are fast.

January 01 at 7:00am
Capt. Bubby Lamy finds numbers of speckled trout in deep water this time of year.

The Great Wall is where it’s at

Hand warmers are essential to deer hunting and other outdoor activities performed in teeth-chattering cold temperatures. Insert these warm packets into your jacket, and it’ll put the life right back into you.

Speckled trout don’t exactly have such warmers, but they get it from a different type of source.

December 22, 2016 at 4:35am
Focus on deep holes in Delacroix’s bayous when water temperatures fall and you’ll catch some trout for the table.

Winter trout can be terrific

Capt. Jack Payne of Sweetwater Marina and Guide Service doesn’t particularly care for cold, wintery weather.

In fact, he hates it.

December 22, 2016 at 4:26am