Recent full moon yields big catches
You may or may not have gotten your fair share depending on where you live in the area, but most of us saw more rain in three days last week than we had in the past three months.We were forced to wait out or dodge several significant downpours in order to get in fishing trips, but other than cool the water off a few degrees, the fishing changed very little.
We fished the river and the bayous on the north end through Saturday and actually spent very little time in the open lake as a long run out could have resulted in an even longer and wetter ride back in.Each approaching storm was accompanied with stiff winds so there wasn’t much that you could do in the open lake anyway.The lake flattened out Sunday, however, and we did very well on both trout and reds working pods of shad in the mid-lake area.
Prior to that, we continued to catch enough flounder and redfish in the river and the bayous to keep things interesting.The flounder bite has finally slowed down some, but the redfish have once again taken up the slack.
There is no doubt as to what the hottest bait has been for duping flounder over the past few months.We cleaned an incredibly fat three-pound fish last week that had three and a half GULP lures in its stomach and all of them were a different color.They were wedged into a stomach already packed full of partially digested shad.Not surprisingly, due to her insatiable appetite, we caught her on a TTF flats minnow tipped with what else…….one more piece of Gulp!
We were fishing the river Saturday morning while yet another storm plowed its way across the lake and I was somewhat surprised by the number of bass boats running from spot to spot.As it turned out, Simon’s Outfitters was hosting an additional tournament to its weekly Tuesday afternoon circuit.
The bite was apparently on the slow side as only one angler weighed in a three bass limit.Trey Smith bested the 14 team field with a five pound total and I think that a 3 pound fish took big bass honors.It was even tougher than that earlier in the week as Jesse Borel and Melvin Dunn teamed up to win the Tuesday evening shootout with slightly less than two pounds of bass.
I haven’t confirmed the following report with Jonathan so I don’t know all of the particulars, but he reportedly more than made up for a long day of fishing Saturday night.According to his fishing friends, after struggling through the local tournament all day long, he loaded up and made the trek to T-Bend to fish another tournament that night.
Patiently dissecting deep structure with a football head jig and trailer on the back side of the full moon, he put together a five bass-22-pound bag that included an 11-pound kicker fish.Regardless of how tired you are, that will quickly erase any memories of a bad day on the river!
While I have not received any more reports of double digit bass, Simon was not the only angler that cashed in on a very productive full moon last week.No less than four other tournaments were won with five fish limits ranging from 21 to 28.7-pounds and each of those events took place on Toledo Bend.
Dalton Spears and his son, Donnie, were a little disappointed that they did not catch a single bass that made the eight-pound mark and I can understand why.They caught and released 16 bass over six-pounds in three nights fishing 10-inch Power Worms and football head jigs with baby brush hog trailers in 22-feet of water.He said most of their larger fish were caught after midnight each night and that they did get a least a couple of shots at much larger bass!
While big bass and the full moon are synonymous, 14-year old Toby Shantz wins the award for diversity in a single night of fishing.Because their dock is currently high and dry, he took the small family paddle boat and fished minnows under a lantern a short distance from their camp.
By the time his Mom called him back to eat barbeque, he had a 2-pound crappie, a 3-pound bass, 2 catfish in the 5 to 7 pound class and several fat yellow bass in the ice chest.A fish fry was enjoyed by all the following evening!
John Thomas and his crew down at OCARC headquarters are tying up the loose ends for their annual fishing tournament to be held August 6^th .For the first time in many years there will be a couple of changes in the categories, but the money will still be the same and the changes are minor.
I’ll have more on it in next week’s column, but you need to to a little pre-game scouting and getting ready this weekend.Load up the kids and find some hot spots.At the very least its one more good reason to get out on the water.We’ll see you there!