Big Lake kayaker finds insane action on specks and reds

Shrimp are plentiful as fall bite cranks up

Many anglers look forward to the fall bite, and for good reason.

Mike Malone of Lake Charles loves fishing this time of year, and is used to having success fishing Big Lake, but even he was surprised last weekend with just how hot the bite was.

“It was the best kayak fishing day I’ve ever had in my life,” said the seasoned angler, who was fishing out of his Wilderness Systems ATAK 140 kayak and using Vudu shrimp under Four Horsemen popping corks.

Malone said finding the fish wasn’t difficult after he conferred with a fellow angler who told him how plentiful the shrimp are in Big Lake. Another kayak angler joined Malone for the hot bite.

“We put in at one of the boat ramps, and we paddled about a mile before all of a sudden, shrimp were just jumping all around us. They were just in there as thick as could be. They were just everywhere,” he said.

With a strong southeast wind blowing at 15 miles per hour, Malone said he wasn’t sure how the day would go — but once he put a Vudu shrimp in the water, the bite didn’t stop.

“We caught over 200 trout. Some were speckled trout, and some were sand trout. They were just vicious,” he said.

But it wasn’t just trout that kept the two anglers busy. They caught redfish too, including seven keepers between the two of them.

“We were catching trout, then the birds started working, and then we’d catch a trout, then a redfish, and then another trout, back and forth like that for a while. The shrimp just continued jumping everywhere,” he said.

Malone said whether you’re fishing with a buddy or fishing alone, you’ll have some bonus chances at catching redfish if you pay close attention and don’t get into a big hurry.

“Every time we reeled in a redfish, other redfish were coming in with it and would follow it right to the kayak,” he said.

Just to mix things up, Malone said they tried some other lures, but none of them were working.

“We tried a few other lures, and the fish would hit them, but it was a short strike every time. They wouldn’t eat anything but the Vudu shrimp,” he said.

Other than finding the shrimp, Malone said anglers can also find fish by watching for birds diving into areas that are full of bait, which is where the trout and redfish will be.

And he has one other piece of advice for anglers fishing Big Lake right now.

“Find any cut that empties into the main body of water, then cast into the cut on the falling tide. Work that shrimp out of the creek under the popping cork, and you will catch plenty of fish. I can’t stress enough how full of shrimp this area is right now, and it doesn’t look like it will slow down anytime soon. The air and water temps are perfect, the shrimp are there, and the bite is just insane,” Malone said.

Some of the best areas of the lake to find fall trout and redfish include Grand Bayou and Grand Bayou Bay, Long Point, Commissary Point and West Cove.

About Brian Cope 221 Articles
Brian Cope of Edisto Island, S.C., is a retired Air Force combat communications technician. He has a B.A. in English Literature from the University of South Carolina and has been writing about the outdoors since 2006. He’s spent half his life hunting and fishing. The rest, he said, has been wasted.