Kayaker gets whopper tripletail during Grand Isle tourney

On Oct. 1, Brendan Bayard was fishing in the Bayou Coast Kayak Fishing Club’s Fall N Tide tournament in Grand Isle when he caught this 19-inch tripletail.
On Oct. 1, Brendan Bayard was fishing in the Bayou Coast Kayak Fishing Club’s Fall N Tide tournament in Grand Isle when he caught this 19-inch tripletail.

Veteran kayak angler Brendan Bayard is no stranger to the winners’ circle when fishing kayak tournaments. He has won a lion’s share of trophies, cash and kayaks over the years. On Saturday, Oct. 1, he was in his usual tournament mode hunting down trout, reds and flounder in search of the Cajun Slam for the Bayou Coast Kayak Fishing Club’s 17th Annual Fall N Tide tournament in Grand Isle. He’s won the tournament twice before. Did he win it again? Nope, but his catch had everyone jealous.

“I was just drifting across a shallow pond in the Fourchon area and noticed something in the water,” he said. “I could see the outline and thought it was trash or something.”

As he got a bit closer, he was shocked at what he saw.

“There was a small stick up out of the water and there was a tripletail lounging in that tiny shadow,” he said. “Then I saw another, Oh my God. The second fish was lower in the water and in the shadow of the other.”

Shallow water tripletail

Without much time to react, Bayard positioned the kayak so he could approach the fish from the tail. Armed with a popping cork and a two-inch Baby Vudu shrimp, he made a light cast next to the fish.

“They were only six-feet from the kayak,” he said. “I actually had to lift the rod and pull the cork above the water. I saw the fish dive and it was on.”

He successfully netted the 19-inch beast and still could not believe the fish was where it was.

“I’m not sure what is going on, but one other kayak angler reported seeing a nice one and another saw a couple small ones” he said. “Additionally, a small tarpon was also caught by one of the anglers.”

Tripletail are not uncommon to coastal Louisiana waters and more and more powerboat anglers report catching them offshore, in the passes and lakes Pontchartrain and Borgne. However, this is the first I’ve heard of one caught by a Louisiana kayak angler and certainly in shallow, inshore waters.

However, long-time Grand Isle guide Keith “Herk” Bergeron with Pair-A-Dice Charters advised that it is not as uncommon as you would think. Although not in the marsh, Bergeron has been slaying some nice “saltwater sac-a-lait” as he calls them, in the waters around Grand Isle.

Bayard caught his Cajun Slam, but it didn’t make the cut for the seven top winning places. However, by the reaction from the crowd, you would have thought he won it all. He ended the day with a unique catch and some delicious table fare.

About Chris Holmes 236 Articles
Chris Holmes has kayak fished in the Gulf of Mexico, the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and many places in between.

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