Guide reveals top 3 areas to fish
With the relatively warm, wet, dreary winter Louisiana has experienced so far this year, Capt. Ronnie Lisotta is expecting some serious speckled trout action this spring — and it should really start ramping up this month.
“April is going to be really good this year,” said Lisotta, with Shoreline Charters out of Pointe-aux-Chenes. “Trout will be early this year because of the hot weather. It’s already been feeling like summertime. If it stays hot like it’s been, the trout are going to be out in the lakes.”
Based on the weather and catches earlier this year, the veteran charter captain said he wondered if specks ever migrated deep into interior marshes this winter.
“In my opinion, I don’t think they ever came in like they normally do. Last year was a tough time fishing. I think what happened is we had a fish kill that put a damper on fishing with a couple of those big freezes, and I think it hurt the fishing,” he said. “But that happens every seven or eight years — you have a big freeze, and then the fish come back strong.”
Lisotta said anglers were already catching trout out in Lake Felicity and Lake Chien in February, and the Sulphur Mine in Lake Pelto was producing earlier than normal as well.
“That’s unusual for this time of year, and it shows summer could be here a little early this time,” he said.
If you want to target specks out of Pointe-aux-Chenes this month, Lisotta listed his top three areas to target, and how he fishes them:
- The Power Lines
Just a few hundred yards from Pointe-aux-Chenes Marina on Highway 665, Lisotta said the power line area was a great place to target — and you don’t even have to crank up your big motor.
“If you have a trolling motor on your boat, that’s all you need from Pointe-aux-Chenes Marina,” he said. “When you leave the marina, head south and you’ll run straight into the power lines about 300 yards away. You can’t miss them.”
Lisotta said he targets the main canal and the bay behind the power lines with a Berkley Rattle Shrimp or a Vudu Shrimp under a popping cork in the shallows, and tight-lines artificials in the middle of the bayou, which can range from about 17 to 20 feet deep.
- Lake Felicity and Lake Chien
When he heads south to these big lakes, Lisotta likes live bait — and if he can get croakers, so much the better.
“In April, you have to cast net for them and go get them yourself,” Lisotta said. “But if you can get some live croakers, that’s key. I hook them through the dorsal fins, and fish them on a Carolina rig with a 2/0 kahle hook on the bottom with a ¼-ounce lead head around structures in the lakes like platforms.
“There’s a lot of snags, but the way I see it, the more snags you get, the better the fishing is,” he said. “With live croakers, you’ll catch 2- and 3-pound trout.”
- Bay Billiot
Live shrimp, croakers or artificial shrimp also are the way to go in Bay Billiot, which is located east of Lake Chien.
“They have some structure inside there — a couple of sunken boats — that you can fish that produce some big trout,” he said.
And if chasing down bull reds is your thing, Pointe-aux-Chenes is a great location to target in April, Lisotta said.
“You can catch bull reds — some 25- and 30-pounders — at just about any deep hole using cracked crab and cut mullet on the bottom, and you can catch big drum at the same time on cracked crabs,” he said.
Editor’s Note: For more info, contact Capt. Ronnie Lisotta with Shoreline Charters at 985-688-2772, or visit his website at www.shorelinecharter.weebly.com.