Fresh water from diversion equals fisherman’s dream
Eli Perrier with a chinquapin and Lloyd Landry V with a bream.
Every cast I make, I think I’m going to catch a fish. This positive attitude assures my intensity of catching fish.
On a recent fishing trip with Hunter, my son, he could not believe how many fish I caught in a 4-hour period.
“How do you do it Dad?” he asked.
I do not stop to take a break, not even to get a drink or snack. I continue to fish.
Last week on a fishing trip to Lake Cataouatche, Jack Fisher brought his family out for an afternoon trip.
He called and asked for a little advice. I instructed him to meet me at the first cut on the north shoreline of Lake Cataouatche before the La. Cypress Canal and make sure he had a box of worms.
He launched at Pier 90 and headed toward Lake Cataouatche through Sellers Canal. When he reached the white poles in the lake, he followed them to the west until he reached the first cut.
He pulled up next to me and tied up with Kathy and Noel Fisher, Eli Perrier, and Lloyd Landry V in his boat.
I had been fishing 30 minutes ahead of Jack and had already boated 12 catfish.
“Bruce is loose,” Jack yelled out. “How many fish do you have? “
I told him I had a dozen and his crew quickly scrambled to grab their rods to set out their line for catfish.
The diversion was running about 7,500 cubic-feet-per-second and pushing clear water through the marsh.
The key to fishing catfish is having two anchors - one to hold the front of the boat and another in the back of the boat to keep it from swaying side-to-side.
Throwing a Carolina rigged ½ to ¾ ounce weight with a #4 cricket hook baited with earthworm down current will help keep your line tight. As soon as the fish hits the bait, a fisherman can set the hook.
I set out three rods when fishing catfish. Today, I only had two.
At times the action was continuous. I could hear the two boys in Jack’s boat say “He’s got another one!”
Jack had one anchor, and his boat was swaying side-to-side. They also were throwing up current and unable to feel the fish hit their line.
When the fishing slowed down, I told Jack I was going into the marsh to check out the grass beds for bream. I asked if I could take the two boys.
Quickly their reply was, “Yeah, come get us!”
After picking up the anchors, I moved over and the boys jumped into my boat. We headed into the marsh about ¼ mile along some grass beds and set out the anchors in the middle of the canal.
I set the boys up with the catfish line and had them throw down current. They stayed in the back of the boat and set their rods in the rod holder.
I grabbed my fly rod and decided to fish bream in the front of the boat. I threw a #4 cricket hook because it has a long shaft and helps in removing the hook. I baited with earthworm,
I cast the worm behind the grass beds and allow the worm to sink slowly because the hook has no weight or cork.
In clear water, a slow-sinking bait drives bream crazy. Immediately, I started picking up a bream on every cast.
The boys had their hands full when the catfish started hitting their lines.
Both boys had big smiles reeling in the catfish. They would take their fish off the line and put them into the live well.
As soon as they could the lines were back in the water. By looking at their faces I could tell they were confident they were going to catch fish on almost every cast.
Soon the live well was starting to fill-up with catfish, and the boys would not stop catching them anytime soon.
After an hour, Lloyd asked if he could fish with my fly rod. I didn’t give it a thought. If this 11-year-old wants to try a fly rod I was going to let him.
It takes a lot of dexterity in the hands and arms to handle a fly rod. He had been watching me roll the baits after it would get down current to move into position behind the grass beds.
Lloyd took the fly rod and put the earthworm where I had been fishing.
Immediately a good-sized bream hit the earthworm and the fight was on.
“This fish feels like a monster,” he said. “This is so cool!”
That’s the feeling you get when you catch a small fish on an 8-foot light fly rod. Eli asked if he could try and Lloyd allowed him to have a turn.
Within the next hour, both boys would take turns catching catfish, bream, and small bass. Jack left his spot and motored to our location. Fishing down current he could hear the yelling of excitement from the boys.
Around 7 p.m., we decided to call it a day.
The live well was full of fish and the boys did not want to leave.
Later that night, we cleaned the fish and had a fish fry.
“This fishing trips ranks as one of the best fishing trips I have ever been on!” Lloyd said.
Anyone wanting to check on the amount of water the diversion is discharging, can go to www.waterdata.usgs.gov/la/nwis/uv/?site_no=295501090190400.
All gauge readings are instantaneous.
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