Guide expects Dularge speckled trout bite to kick in after current cool snap

Long-range forecast looks good for rise in water temperatures, LaCoste said

After today’s chilly, blustery weather, the forecast calls for sunny skies and consistent highs in the 60s all the way through the middle of next week.

Those are perfect conditions for coastal waters to continue their gradual warmup, a trend that had been relatively consistent since cold weather swept into the state earlier this month and pushed water temperatures into the 40s for more than a week.

“The way the water temperatures are looking for the next week of weather, it should be perfect,” said Capt. Marty LaCoste, with Absolute Fishing Charters in Dularge. “The prediction should be for the trout to turn on full force within about the next seven days.”

Earlier this week, LaCoste said water temperatures had risen to about 57 degrees in the afternoon, more than warm enough for the trout bite to return.

“Last year, it was when it was over 51,” he said. “Normally, you’re looking for 53 degrees.”

Wintertime speck spots LaCoste suggested near Dularge include Lake DeCade, Lost Lake, Bayou Sauveur and Deer Bayou.

“I’m looking for 6- to 8-feet of water depth on dead-end canals,” he said. “Use a slow, steady retrieve. Sometimes you’re just letting it drift in the current.

“But it’s always slow because the fish are sluggish when it’s cold.”

For specks, LaCoste favors Matrix Shad in green hornet and ultraviolet, and Matrix Vortex Shad in purple haze.

Redfish-wise, lower water temps cause them to stack up, resulting in easy limits once you locate them, he said.

“They’ll stay in those areas for sometimes two to three weeks before they leave,” LaCoste said. “You’re catching those reds in 1 foot of water on the edges, because they’ll go where the water warms up the quickest along the edges.

“They’ll get close to the bank because it warms up the quickest.”

For redfish, he likes Matrix Vortex Shad in purple haze, and Matrix Shad in green hornet and shrimp creole.

He hopes temperatures remain cool enough to keep the trout in their winter holes, but warm enough for the bite to kick in.

“We need it warm up a little bit, but cold enough to keep it just right,” he said.

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Patrick Bonin is the former editor of Louisiana Sportsman magazine and