Yellow Cotton Bay steady if unspectacular

You’ll feel like a king when a trophy trout explodes like a volcano on your topwater plug.

With millions of gallons of water so muddy it had coon tracks on it barreling down the Mississippi River just to our east, Captain Owen Langridge (225-978-1136) idled his boat to the west out of Yellow Cotton Bay Marina. Wind, high water and horrible March weather would have to find other anglers that would rather make excuses than fish.

Along for the trip were Denham Springs Bass Pro Shops General Manager Patrick McKee and Promotions Manager Ed Williams. Both guys were looking forward to a little “research and development” on the water, and our first stop not 500 yards from the ramp proved to be a great subject.

“It’s been tough down here all March,” Langridge said. “You’ve got to hunt and peck around for a while, but you’ll eventually get into a pod of decent trout. I came out yesterday, started at 7:00 and didn’t get bit for three hours. Then I caught 20 just like that.”

Langridge had rigged all our rods with popping corks complete with 2-foot leaders and Pink Tiger Billy Bay Jumping Halo Shrimp. He had caught his fish the afternoon before on this rig, and he wanted to quickly see if they were still eating it.

Our pod of trout produced a few 14- to 15-inch trout, but Langridge wanted to see if we could be on bigger trout, so we moved out towards the Buras Canal and ran north for about a mile or two.

We skipped around from shore to shore and point to point, and we picked up a few trout at each spot. The plastic bite slowed somewhat, though, so Langridge and McKee turned to a couple live shrimp to see if we could get the party started again.

On our way back toward the landing, Langridge spotted some birds picking in the water. It was a mixture of terns and gulls. Langridge pointed out that the terns were liars more often than not, but that the gulls always told the truth.

The water was flowing hard through the cut, but we managed to get a few bites right in the middle of the current. And, although we didn’t see any shrimp, the birds must have been on something good because they refused to be bullied into leaving.

“Let’s go try a spot where I caught a 4-pounder just a couple days ago,” Langridge suggested as we reeled in our last casts. “It’s the kind of spot where we probably won’t get many bites, but the bites we do get should be quality fish.”

As we were working the shore within site of the Yellow Cotton Marina ramp canal, McKee began struggling with a heavy fish out of the back of Langridge’s boat. The fish stayed down, and it bit near the shore, so we looked forward to netting the big redfish.

The big redfish turned out to be the largest trout McKee has ever caught. The fish was 25 inches, and Langridge estimated the trout pushed 5 pounds. We had a few more bites down the same shore, but the action quickly began to wane.

We all found it difficult to argue with consistent popping cork action for much of the day and a couple big fish to boot. We may have been rushing the best fishing, which is yet to come, but if this trip was any indicator, the trout will be around South Plaquemines Parish this spring no matter the water or weather.

About Chris Ginn 778 Articles
Chris Ginn has been covering hunting and fishing in Louisiana since 1998. He lives with his wife Jennifer and children Matthew and Rebecca along the Bogue Chitto River in rural Washington Parish. His blog can be found at