Biloxi marsh redfish have never quit biting, guide says

Guide Justin Bowles said redfish of all sizes have been biting this summer in Biloxi Marsh, and there’s no sign of a change coming.

The Lake Pontchartrain Basin has had quite a unique year, with multiple Bonnet Carre Spillway openings. That might scare the average angler away, but that’s fine with Capt. Justin Bowles, who targets September redfish in the Biloxi Marsh.

“So far, the Biloxi Marsh redfishing has stayed about (typical), and I would assume it’s going to stay the same,” he said.

That means really, really good fishing for Biloxi Marsh anglers.

One thing Bowles, of JB Fishing Charters, does is fish slightly deeper areas this time of year because of the scorching heat.

“In August and September, when it’s really hot, I normally find the fish more in the bigger bays and ponds with a little more depth,” said Bowles, who targets reds with H&H gold spinners teamed with limbo-slice colored Matrix Shad.

“If I see them moving at the spinnerbait and they’re not taking it, I’ll keep a craw rigged to throw behind it,” he said.

Bowles uses a 5/16-ounce weight in front of his Texas-rigged craw.

“I like to use something heavy that I can cast far,” he said. “I think being able to cast it further in shallow water is more important than the actual weight.”

When working a Texas-rigged bait, Bowles (985-969-2036) goes along in the marsh making casts toward the shoreline, rather than toward the open water.

“I sort of just drag it,” he said. “I don’t really pop it like you would a jig. I’m normally casting toward the bank and dragging it a ways off.

“When I get it halfway back to the boat, I’ll reel it up. If there is low water, I’ll fish it further off the bank. I find the fish won’t be right up on the bank.”

Bowles said one of the keys is to set your alarm clock early and get off the water early.

“I like to get out as early as possible and usually fish ‘til about 10 or so,” he said. “You pretty much have what you’re going to catch by 10.”

If Bowles could hand-pick the conditions, he said he would choose a slight amount of breeze.

“I would want a little bit of wind because it’s so hot,” he said. “I still want to make it across Lake Borgne, but I would prefer maybe a 10 mph wind or so whenever I’m actually in the marsh fishing to drift the boat and keep me not as hot.”

The redfish run the gambit on size, according to Bowles.

“That’s one thing about the Biloxi Marsh; you can catch a 16-incher, and then you can catch a 27-incher on the next cast,” he said. “I find that you don’t really get on certain schools that are one size.”

About Joel Masson 176 Articles
Joel Masson is an avid angler who has fished South Louisiana his whole life. He lives in Mandeville and can be reached at