May winds still gusting over local waters, making fishing difficult

Special to the Herald-Guide
May 26, 2009 at 2:45 pm  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

It's May and the winds have not let up. Since March, south and southeast winds have stayed at 15 to 20 mph.
Any area lakes with open water, the waves have been running about 2 to 4 feet.

Try getting across Lake Cataouatche or Lake Salvador with these conditions may result in damage to any boat.

Even with the strong wind and high waves, we managed to get out Thursday afternoon on Lake Cataouatche.† The afternoon was cloudy, windy and the temperature rose into the mid 80s, which made for a good afternoon for fishing.

The water was gin-clear coming out of the cut†at the mouth of the Louisiana Cypress Canal.

The protection of the grass beds kept the wave action to a minimum.

The water coming out of the marsh into Lake Cataouatche and into the lake has been extremely clear - great conditions for bait to gather around all the cuts.

When this happens, bass, bream, sac-a-lait and catfish gang up for a feast.

I had Caitlyn McDonald and her boyfriend, Thomas Sailor, fishing with me.

We anchored on the right side of the mouth of the canal.
I had rigged the two with corks and a No. 6 bream hook. The hook was approximately 16 inches below the cork with a small split-shot of weight to help the worm sink.

Fishing the right side before the cut, we started throwing earthworms under a cork to catch bream.

On Caitlynís first cast, she reeled in one of the many bream, chinquapin and goggle-eye of the day.

Caitlyn and Thomas were catching a fish on every throw. Another technique I used was putting a small split shot of weight at the end of the line and tying a No. 6 bream hook 6 inches above the split shot without a cork.

With the split shot at the end of your line, the earthworm stays off the bottom.

Bream like to school on the bottom and attack bait from below. This technique allows the bait to fall in their strike zone.

While Thomas and Caitlyn continued to catch bream after bream, I started throwing a green watermelon Baby Brush Hog, red blood line ľ-ounce rattle trap, Baby Minus-1 with a green top, and a white spinner bait.

I caught five bass quickly and threw everyone of them back.
Two Baton Rouge fishermen in a boat next to me thanked me for throwing them back. The conversation quickly turned to the number of bass being caught and kept from Lake Cataouatche.

These fishermen had been observing the bass fishermen on Lake Cataouatche keeping big bass and not returning the resource back to the water.† I had told them of a big fish I had caught a month ago.

A taxidermist was doing a fiberglass reproduction.† The fish was measured and pictures taken, then released back to the lake.† The fishermen from Baton Rouge was considering doing the same with some big bass he had caught.

We both agreed, many of the bass fishermen should consider reproductions of big bass.† Maybe, fishermen reading this article will do the same.

By the end of the afternoon, Caitlyn and Thomas had caught over a hundred bream but only kept 12.† By 7 p.m. we were back at the boat launch.

Lake Salvador reds are hot to the bite
On Friday afternoon, I managed to fish the south shoreline of Lake Salvador.† I made the run from Pier 90, hugging the East side of Lake Cataouatche and Lake Salvador until I reached the leigh side.

The water was calm enough to run to Bayou Perot.† Passing Bayou Villares, the water was extremely clear.

I located red fish on the West side of Bayou Perot next to a small island with some stumps.

I caught fish on a chrome rattle trap, 2-inch chartreuse and glow beetle, ľ-ounce gold spoon, and shrimp on a jig head, fishing the bottom and under a cork.

I limited out within an hour.† The fish ranged between 16 and 22 inches.† I caught and released about 30 more and enjoyed fishing.†

The water had a clear light green appearance and was 5 to 7 feet deep.

On my way back to the launch, I crossed Lake Salvador by the rigs in the middle of the lake.

To my surprise, the large rig was gone.† Three years ago they started removing the small satellite rigs.† We use to fish around these structures, and now everyone of them is gone.

We had one particular rig that never failed to catch reds this time of year.† It was rig No. 33.

On the depth finder the bottom rose up to 7 feet.† It was like a small underwater shell island with structure.
If you have an old GPS system, the rigs are still marked on them.

Please wait until you have a calm day to fish† the middle of Lake Salvador.† It can kick-up faster than Lake Pontchartrain and become very dangerous for boater and fishermen.

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