Sunday morning Hackberry kayak trip produces doormats

Mike Malone shows off a couple of hard-earned flounder from Sunday morning's kayak trip near the Ellender Bridge out of Hackberry.

Flounder gorging on pogies near Ellender Bridge

Cooler temperatures and a slight north breeze greeted us as we launched our kayaks last Sunday at 6 a.m. at Ellender Bridge just north of Hackberry on the Intracoastal Canal.

As we shoved off, I noticed the water temperature was crazy cool for this time of year at 78 degrees, mainly because of all rain we have been getting. After waiting for a few tugboats and barges to pass, we made a short paddle across to the marsh and started scanning the grass lines to spot any activity. We fished there a few hours, without any luck.

We decided to separate and call each other if one of us found some fish. I decided to paddle further east down the Intracoastal to the mouth of Choupique Bayou. With deeper water and an outgoing tide, I figured maybe a few speckled trout would be in the area. I threw the tackle box at them — still with no luck.

Feeling discouraged I called my buddy to see if he found any fish, but he struck out as well, so we decided to head back to the launch. Paddling back we noticed bait being blown up in a cut, then saw a pogy flying and the white belly of a flounder 2 feet out of the water.

We dropped our anchors and started casting, both choosing an H2O swimming shad swimbait in bluegill and threadfin shad colors.

Casting out in 8 to 10 inches of water, you had to immediately start reeling once your lure hit the water. And the “thump” happened immediately.

Making sure the fish was still there I set the hook, and put an 18-inch doormat into the net. But all the commotion must have spooked the bait and fish, so we moved further west on the canal, scanning every cut hoping to find the same scenario.

We make it to the last cut across from the launch and the water was black, with thousands of pogies everywhere on the surface of the water — and flounder feasting.

We anchored and started to cast, but I decided to get closer to the action and got out of the ‘yak and waded.

The plan worked, and I quickly had a 19-inch flounder in the net.

After a few more casts with no luck, we decided to head in with the heat bearing down. Flounder gorging on pogies was an awesome sight to see, but they were definitely tricky to catch on artificial lures.