Head to outside structures with live shrimp, guide says
So it was a banner redfish day, one for the record books.
I was aboard Capt. Mike Wittich’s boat, fishing with both he and Capt. Ron “Ahab” Broadus, on what was supposed to be a scouting trip.
They had some important clients to take out the next day, and they wanted to see where the fish would be waiting. We bought some live shrimp from Serigne’s, and Wittich pointed the bow down Bayou Gentilly and motored us straight into Grand Lake, via Little Lake and Alligator Pass. It took less than 15 minutes and the Power Pole went down. It stayed down for all of 15 more minutes, and when it came back up we had 15 keeper redfish on ice. Like I said, it was a banner day. We caught everything on live or dead shrimp, and almost every cast ended in a hookup. None of the reds were huge, the average being about 17 inches, but a few were 20 to 21 inches — making them the perfect size for the grill.
The question then was what we would do with the rest of the morning. It was 6:45 a.m., and we already had our limit of reds. We had two choices: Either head farther out into the big bays where the trout action was hit-and-miss (with more misses than hits due to so much fresh water in the area from the Big Muddy), or poke around the inside waters and play catch-and-release with more redfish. We chose the latter — and after we had our fill headed back to the dock early.
Ahab said Delacroix anglers have been forced to focus on redfish solely because of the sheer volume of fresh water inundating prime trout habitat.
“May was tough, June will be better, and by July the trout action should be wide open,” he said. “The river should be down enough to allow our salinities to soar, and shrimp and baitfish and all the critters that eat them will show up in abundance. Now is when we head outside to Stone Island and all the surrounding islands and structures, over to Battledore Reef, Iron Banks, the Wreck — and even on out to Breton Island. Right now the action is really picking up in the outer bays like Bay Lafourche, Lake Campo and Oak River Bay, also.”
Ahab’s advice for July anglers: “Leave early, wear sunscreen, stay hydrated, bring live shrimp and quit early.”
Capt. Mike Wittich can be reached at 504-577-4774.
Capt. Ron “Ahab” Broadus can be reached at 504-914-6063.