I often wonder if my time was limited in this world how I would spend my remaining days. I would like to think that I would be able to spend most, if not all of my time on the water because this is were I truly love to be. For a while now I have known this time was coming and there was no way to avoid it, but my job has forewarned me that all of October everyone was going to be working 7 days a week.This is a bummer because October is my favorite month to be on the water.
The cooler temperatures of October starts to push bait out of the marsh and it makes finding fish almost effortless, you just have to be out there! As the mullet and shrimp make their migration to the Gulf, pods of trout are thick underneath them just waiting for one of them to get out of line so they can get their next meal. In order to find these trout you have to use your senses, keep your eyes open and listen up. Always keep a watchful eye for shrimp popping on top of the water, if you see this, I guarantee there is a fish under him that made him surface. The other outcome to this is the seagulls and other birds hover above the waters surface waiting for the shrimp to emerge so they can steal it away from the hungry fish. The sound of screeching gulls will carry across the water and before to long there will be a large group all fighting for the shrimp popping out of the water. Fishing around these birds working can be a lot of fun and produce a quick limit.
Here are 2 seagulls waiting for a shrimp to reemerge again to make for an easy meal.
Even a Snowy Egret waiting on the shoreline is getting on the action.
Fortunately I had a few days of vacation to use so I figured why not? I had 5 days off before I was going to be locked away for over a month so I had planned to spend every moment outside and live up my last few days of freedom. So I was loaded and headed to Sabine Lake the next morning and was looking forward to fishing. I arrive and notice that the wind is terrible, but that is part of the game and I will cope. I make a short paddle over to some pylons and tie off to them because drift fishing was out of the question. As soon as I arrive I see some bait scatter on a point so I toss my SkitterWalk and start working it back to me. After the third pop a trout takes a bite at it and misses, and then another, and another. My next cast I hang into one and he is big enough to stick on the stringer. Make another cast and catch another fish. Not long after I think they had caught on and would not hit it but I started to see shrimp popping so I switched to my purple and chartreuse Norton Sand Eel,”Big Purp”, and it immediately pays off. The trout are all over it! After putting a few on the stringer I hear a familiar screech and I turn around to see a group of 20 gulls or so all diving in one area trying to catch breakfast. I do not even bother trying to fish them because I have enough fish right in front of me. Also, if I was to untie from my pylon the wind would of blown me all the way to Mexico in no time. Right around 8 A.M. I catch my 10th trout to finish off my limit. During the action I also caught and released 4 redfish and a 20″ Flounder. Not a bad morning of fishing and a great way to start off my vacation. This is the first stringer of trout I have kept in probably a year and a half, and it is a solid one!
My dad sees how well I did so he decides to take Thursday off and we we are going to take the boat out in the morning. He decides to let me be the guide for the day so of course I take hime back to the same area. The wind was still bad and was making it hard to stay still even with a trolling motor. So I maneuver over to the same set of pylons and tie off just like I did the day before. Pops first cast he hangs into a trout on the same point I started out the previous day. Then I catch one and before long we both are reeling in trout. Around 7:30 it starts to slow down but its ok because we had 15 trout in the box . We untie and start to work the group of birds behind us and we quickly hang into them. Most of them were smaller ones but we managed to catch 3 more to add to the box and decided to call it a day. You know it is a good day of fishing when the deck of your boat is littered with torn baits.
Friday I thought about doing it again but I decided to sleep in. As soon as I walked outside I immediately regretted my decision because it was an absolute perfect day. So instead of driving all the way to the lake I decide to make a paddle down the Neches river to relax a little and to check on a duck hunting hole that I have. It was an awesome day to just mosey slowly down the river and take in the sights and the sun!
Saturday comes around and me and a few buddies decide to head to the beach to try and catch some bull reds. This time of the year they come into the surf to spawn and if you are prepared, you can have a day of fishing that is unheard of. We prepare our lines, cut up some mullet and are ready to paddle some lines out. It looked a little rough but knew it was doable to get past the breakers and drop our baits a few hundred yards out. Well the 2nd set of breakers were twice the size than what it seamed from the shore. I struggled to get past them but I managed, dropped my line and made my paddle back. Got the second line and as soon as I hit the second set of breakers I could physically not get passed them, I was exhausted. My buddy Beau gets in and decides to give it a try and makes it out there, well on his way back the first rod doubles over and the drag is screaming! I set the hook and the fight is on. After a ten minute battle I get the beast to the shore and it by far is the biggest fish I have caught. She was well over 40″ and was around 25 lbs on the Boga Grips. I got a few pictures and released her back to the ocean.After this we decide it is to dangerous to paddle back out so we decide to just throw horseshoes and enjoy the rest of the day.
I decided to clean up my kayak and the back of my truck on Sunday and to use it as a recovery day before I started working overtime on Monday.
I had my 5 days off and I did what I enjoyed most, and that is catching fish, being on the water and enjoying the outdoors. I caught my personal best redfish and caught limits of trout that I have not done in a long time, so my time off was well spent. As soon as I get a relief day I plan on staying in the marsh and chase schooling redfish. That is an experience that I only get to have usually once or twice a year and it is something everyone needs to witness. Next time you have a day off or some spare time, go out and do something, be active. Rather it is playing golf, going for a run, or spending it on the water chasing fish, make sure you enjoy yourself. Every shot, every cast, and every day that you have, make it count!