Short boat rides result in limits of trout, redfish
This is the time of year every Lafitte angler waits for, when they can forget the long hauls to the southern parts of Barataria Bay necessary during the summer.
“The fish are moving northward, so you’re talking about fishing the north end of Barataria Bay,” Capt. Theophile Bourgeois said. “You’ll have a short boat ride. This is when you can run within 15 miles of Lafitte.”
Areas like the Pen, the Rigolets and Bayou Round swarm with trout just waiting to pounce on a bait.
“You’ll catch nice fish — 20-inch trout,” the owner of Bourgeois Fishing Charters explained.
The water, while cooler than during the broiling heat of summer, still hasn’t chilled to the point that trout get lockjaw, so easy limits are possible.
“We’re fishing birds,” Bourgeois said. “Little lake is thick with birds.”
Effective lures right now include the Yum Mud Minnow in silver mullet tightlined on 1/4-ounce jigheads or dangled about 20 inches below a popping cork. Bourgeois said fluorocarbon leaders are most effective when using corks.
“You need to have with both,” the guide said. “Every day you’re going to find it changes. One day they want it suspended, and then next day they want it bounced off the bottom.”
Topwaters like Bomber Badonk-a-donks also can put fish in the boat.
“The fish aren’t lethargic yet,” Bourgeois said. “They’re fat as Butterball turkeys. They’re actively feeding.”
And redfish? He said the area is just filthy with them.
“If you’re fishing with shrimp, you can catch 50 to 75 just to catch your limit of keepers,” Bourgeois said. “So there’s tons of little reds.”
Of course, fall fronts can wreak havoc on the fishery.
“The day after a front, if it’s not too, too windy, it’s alright,” Bourgeois said. “But the day after a front it’s not. It takes a couple of days (for the water) to clean up.”
So it’s important to work the weather and time your trips to allow the winds to calm and the water to clean up.