Despite some terrible early season weather, constantly changing winds and some relatively hard run off from heavy rains the conditions on both our local lakes, are ahead of schedule. On several trips in the last weeks I could not believe the amount of bait in our estuaries or the clarity of the water; both were impressive to say the least. The main bodies of the lakes as well as the surrounding marshes are full of life. The early season shad populations and shrimp numbers are enough to give even the most skeptical angler cause to smile.

There is no doubt the recent mild winter helped out this situation. The marshes are months ahead of schedule on the amount grasses present and baitfish production. During one scouting trip, I could not help but marvel as I watched clouds of small baitfish and small shrimp scurry among the lush grass. Needle fish as long as your arm are thick in the bayous along with a very healthy population of mullet and crabs. The stage is set for some excellent fishing (and perhaps better quality fish than we have seen in a couple of years).
Both Sabine Lake and Calcasieu have become a more angler-friendly in the past week, thanks to some drop dead gorgeous weather. Anglers from across the river have started seeing some really good trout show up on main lake reefs in the open water. There have been several good trout caught, including one super fish that stretched the tape over 30 feet in length. Unlike earlier in the year when school trout were the norm, it appears the better fish, over 4 pounds, are becoming much more common.
 Sabine Lake anglers who have been pinned to the shorelines by high winds, are discovering hungry trout and reds as far up as the north end of the lake and even into both the Sabine and Neches rivers. Water clarity and bait have not been an issue; one local angler told me he could see shell on the bottom in nearly 5 feet of water in some places.

I couldn’t agree more as I verified that statement last week. While wading a popular flat, I was chest deep in water and had no problem watching my Corky slowly sink all the way to the sand bottom. 

Since we had a break in the winds, plenty of anglers have taken advantage of jetty fishing and the results have been good. Big redfish and drum are still crushing crab and mullet, the speckled trout are also showing in decent numbers. I have even gotten reports of some other species that usually show up later like Spanish mackerel and some Kings. If that doesn’t get your attention, you may need to check your pulse. These fish will put on a show if you are fortunate enough to get into a hungry a bunch.

The upcoming summer looks extremely promising and the conditions should do nothing but reinforce the potential. With much more predictable weather on the horizon all anglers should be really looking forward totheir next trip on the water.