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By Capt. Chuck Uzzle
For the Record 

Beat the heat with summer variety


Last updated 7/6/2021 at 9:38pm

Easily one of the most alluring features of Sabine Lake area is the

fact that you can catch so many different species of fish in a relatively small

area. The brackish water holds both fresh and saltwater fish in good numbers as

well as quality. It’s never uncommon to see a stringer of fish include flounder,

redfish, speckled trout, and an occasional really nice largemouth bass. If you

play your cards right you may even throw in a striped bass just for good

measure. The potential for all these fish to be in the same body of water makes

each strike that much more exciting because you never know who will show up to

crash the party.

Speaking of not knowing who will show up, it’s really going to get interesting

as the summer progresses and we remain stuck in these dry conditions. In

years past when we have had dry spring seasons with little or no significant run

off from either Toledo Bend or Sam Rayburn a whole new group of fish begins to

show up. Species like Jack Crevalle, sharks, rays, and even tarpon will make the

trek up the river as the saltwater slowly creeps farther inland. These party

crashers often show up and make their presence known in the form of screaming

drags and great “the one that got away” stories. Nothing gets your attention

like the prospect of getting spooled and actually having to chase a fish down.

In areas where lots of local anglers congregate it’s often an absolute circus

when someone hooks up with a stud jack in the middle of the armada of boats. The

chase scene that ensues is like something from the Bourne Identity, boats

weaving in and out avoiding everything from anchor lines to fishing lines.

Nothing like the prospect of catching “the big one”, it’s why we fish.

On the subject of big fish and areas where people congregate you can bet that this

month there will be some great fish taken at the jetties. A few very dedicated

anglers will take advantage of the ultra early bite before the masses reach the

rocks. Good tide changes a few hours before dawn and all the traffic is a

winning recipe to help tangle with some big fish, especially trout. There are

very few strikes that are as vicious as speckled trout at the jetties on

topwater plugs in the dark. I used to wonder what those boats were doing heading

back to the dock as the sun was just breaking the horizon until I got a chance

to try out the pattern myself. All I can say is the reward is well worth the


Now if fishing in the dark is not your favorite don’t worry because you can

still be successful during daylight hours with a just a small variation to the

pattern. Topwater plugs worked in and around the rocks will still produce some

fish when the sun comes up but swim baits will just flat wear those fish out.

There are several styles of swim bait you can use and they all work. The

conventional plastic swim bait with a paddle tail is a great option, especially

when it’s fished on a light jig head to allow for a slower fall and more subtle

presentation. The other “swim bait” is a shallow running crank bait like the

Swimming Image, Mann’s 1 Minus, or Rapala. These plugs are really user friendly

and allow the fishermen the opportunity to dig around in and or bounce off the

rocks triggering brutal strikes from some hefty speckled trout and redfish. The

other great thing about all the swim baits is that they allow you to cover lots

and lots of water in a short period of time making you much more productive.


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