Historically, the height of the Mississippi River ebbs and flows throughout the summer months, and by the time fall arrives, the Big Muddy has become the Little Trickle — at least in relative terms.
But over most of the last decade, the summer drop has been quickly succeeded by an autumn rise, making the fishing around Venice good but not as legendary as it usually is this time of year.
In 2020, however, the river has done what it’s supposed to, falling below 5 feet at the New Orleans Carrollton gauge weeks ago, and staying there, save for a few momentary blips above the threshold.
The only fly in this super-soothing ointment has been the tropical weather that every other week seems to want to bring the energy of the islands to coastal Louisiana.
Capt. Dustin Bounds (gardenbaycharters.com) and I had a previously scheduled trip canceled by Beta or Sally or Laura or one of the other stupid storms that threatened the area, so we rescheduled for this week, and wouldn’t you know it, another storm named Delta barreled through the Caribbean and began sucking life from the deep, warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
We got the trip in, but the earliest bands of Delta dumped rain on us throughout the morning, finding every seem in our rain suits and soaking us to the core. Not only that, but winds were howling at 25 mph.
Still, the fishing was top-notch, with nearly every cast delivering a bite from any of an assortment of species. That fast action will only get more intense in the weeks to come.
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