The Lake Salvador/Lafitte area is a haven for fishing of all types. But right now there is one big story that bounces from boat to boat over the lakes, the reds.
Redfish anglers are getting their fill this summer and more to boot. Gordon Matherne with Gordon’s Pro Guide Service (985-758-2824) says that if anglers want guaranteed good-eating redfish in large numbers, their best bet is the Lake Salvador/Lafitte area.
To insure this catch, anglers should target the following areas:
“Little lake, Turtle Bay, and Hackberry Bay are very good areas to find reds at this time of year,” Matherne said.
It is best to fish ponds and cuts around bays and lakes when the tide is high, and fish the open water when the tide drops, flushing the fish and bait out into the bays and lakes.
Inside these lakes around structure and stumps, live or dead shrimp on the bottom works best. But when anglers fish a shoreline or point, beetle-spins, rattle traps and spoons work equally well.
The redfish should remain in these areas through December, says Matherne.
When anglers get a hold of some reds, they can expect ten or more 4 to 10 pound fish on an average day.
The smaller reds tend to hang out around structure and the bigger ones will be found by the shoreline.
Luke Landry of Luling, a guide for Outcast Fishing Charters (504-912-8291) says the regular schools of Bull Reds should begin to form any day now. Once they start schooling, anglers will be able to catch unlimited amounts of bull reds 28 to 30 inches in length.
The ledges and drop offs where Catahoula Bay and Little Catahoula Bay meet is where many of the redfish will begin to school, says Landry.
"Due south from the mouth of Bayou Cuba is a very popular spot in the lake marked by a sunken shrimp boat only partially exposed,” says Landry.
Another popular schooling point for reds is a few hundred yards off of Mullet Point where thousands of bull reds may be seen schooling.
Landry says that the reds will not tend to school against the shore so banging the banks will be unproductive if trying to fish a school. Instead anglers should get about 100 yards off of the bank and cast out. With these schools patience is always the key, sometimes the fish will come write away. Other times anglers must put on a little sunscreen and wait it out.
Landry says anglers should use plastics with lead heads when fishing schools but anything will work most of the time. When moving into a school of reds to site-cast, a troll motor is key not to scare the school.
On slow days when redfish are not as active, a more precise choice of bait is required.
“When anglers have a slow day and they must search for the red, a Baby 1 Minus crank bait works just as well or better than live shrimp on the bottom,” Landry said.
If anglers have the patience to wait for the big schools of big reds throughout July then they will get their fill guaranteed.