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Author: CT Williams III Created: 1/30/2009 4:15 PM
Bio to come....

             The experience of a few “cool fronts” and we all get excited about fall. We think of turning leaves, the cooler weather, and Halloween’s scary events. Wow, did this year fly by. But in the rush to kick start Q4 of ’09 we often overlook one of Mother Nature’s greatest gifts, THE FISHING.

             The tenth month of the calendar year is a messenger for much of our wildlife and fisheries. The light cool fronts that make their way to our state let nature know it is time to prepare for winter. Patterns in the animal and fish world change, and those who want to catch fish in Southeast Louisiana would be wise to do the same.

             Avid anglers often speak of transition fishin’ this time of year. A time when fishing hot spots along the coast and just off the coast begin to cool down, and the fishing inside the marsh heats up. The “transition” means a wealth of opportunity for anglers with smaller boats. The protected waters of the state’s interior marshes are a safe haven for the...

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 If there is a theme for fishing this month it would be "Variety." The Lake Pontchartrain basin is on fire with fish this month. September is a month when the water in the lake is often a little clearer than usual and the salinity rises enough to attract a long list of great fish.

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               With a little good weather, you can watch hundreds of boats leave from many of Louisiana’s marinas and launches. Each rig is loaded with tackle, bait, and anglers sporting a healthy dose of motivated spirits. Yet, at the end of the day, only a small percentage of those boats come back with a full box of fish.

             Now I enjoy a good boat ride as much as anyone, but if catching fish is the goal, the more running you do, the less fishing you do, and more than likely, the less catching you do. Like most things in life, a little preparation before you leave for your fishing trip, can go a long way. In a short space let’s take a practical approach to catching more fish.

 

Info is Gold

 

            A wealth of information is out there. Each week the news channels offer fishing reports on television; mine is on WDSU Channel 6, Fridays at noon. There are many locally produced TV fishing shows offering a wealth of information. The BIGFISH TV show comes on Saturdays...

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For those who work outside, there are days in July when each breath seems to hold less air than the last, your eyes are blinded by sweat, and your body won’t keep the water you drink any longer than if you just poured it over your head.

  

But as the legendary angler Barry Brechtel would say, “Here’s the good news”.

There is a golden moment most July days, when those who love to fish can get on the water and catch a box of fish along with a phenomenal sunrise, without breaking a sweat.

This time of year, speckled trout and redfish are probably more cooperative than any other. Coastal fishing is accessible for just about everyone. From the bank, a small boat or the latest and greatest in Bay Boat technology.

  

The sun comes up early in July, with the real heat setting in just before noon. An angler leaving the dock at the break of dawn can get five or six hours of fishing done before the afternoon stifling, “is something burning”, take your breath away heat,...

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I wasn’t born in a boat, but it was one of the few moments in my life I didn’t spend in one. My father defined enthusiasm for hunting and fishing and started dragging me along right away. I have never gotten a straight answer on whether he took me because he wanted to, or if my Mom left him no other option.

  

Regardless, every Friday, we would pack up and head to Lee’s Launch on Highway 90 for a weekend at the Roseau Club. A 100+ year old “camp” that we loved and shared with friends and the resident critters of Rabbit Island. It was here I caught my first fish, shot my first duck, and had my first boat and motor all before the ripe old age of 7.

 

 At the time, my best friend Roger Lightfoot and I would fish in that 16 foot flat with a 7.5 horsepower motor all day long. The rule was to always stay in sight of the camp. Our eyes must have been much better than theirs as we seemed to always be in trouble for venturing too far away. We worked feverishly to out fish the “old men”...

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Louisiana summers don¹t let the cold season come easily. Winter fights its way into our state like a chain-smoker pedaling a one-speed bike up a steep hill. However, when the time comes for our return to the summer season, we generally experience something completely different.

Bounce would be a better term for our Spring season. We bounce from temperatures in the low 40s to the mid 80s. Barometric pressures are never steady, and a clear sky in the morning rarely guarantees it won’t rain by lunch. The careful observer might say, “Yes but what about the winds? Aren’t the winds constantly blowing in the spring?” Sure, the wind speed stays in the teens as we head into summer. However, choosing which direction they will come from can be like finding that certain something you put in a “safe” place so you won’t lose it.

For the avid angler, we bounce off walls with “spring” fever. We, who love the rod and reel, know that in April the fish are feeling Mother Nature’s urgings to breed and feed. We know the baitfish and shrimp that migrate to warm offshore waters in the winter are returning to the coast and bringing some fat fish behind them. We know the smaller Speckled Trout and Redfish that winter in the marsh for safety are now bravely traveling into open water to meet the incoming shrimp.  We know all of these things would mean great fishing, if the weather would just stay consistent for a few days, but it doesn’t. It bounces from one extreme to another.

...

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It is not uncommon for one to know his or her I.Q. these days, as there are many tests available to assess this.   Whether this information has any value is another question because the number apparently has little bearing on your success in life. There are as many geniuses, or genii (usage determined by which Mensa chapter you belong), super-sizing fast food as there are slow thinkers carrying oversized money bags to the bank.

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Louisiana winters pale in comparison with our northern neighbors, but if we have a winter season, February would be the heart of it. Sure we get cold spells near the holidays or an occasional snow flurry, however, even in the depth of our “winter” we often see days that fill the rest of the country with envy.

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