Hometown News For Orange County, Texas

Trying To Dodge Another Bullet

Everything regarding our current monthly storm event is still “iffy” as we are well aware of the potential consequences of a rain maker that

decides to park on top of us. Even as I am writing this column, our power is blinking on and off! There is no doubt that fish adapt to the conditions Mother Nature throws their way, but they have really been challenged over the past three years. In the last two weeks the trout that had been holding on the beaches and jetties went from moving into the lake to wondering what the hell is going on. Ida ushered in both bait and trout on the strength of a potent storm surge only to have Nicholas negate most of the positive benefits. At this point it still looks as though we may break even, however, depending on the amount of rain we have to endure.

For the trout, it is all about local rainfall and two swollen rivers that purge Sabine Lake on the way to the Gulf. For years the salinity in the deeper waters of both the Sabine and Neches as well as the Intracoastal provided a temporary sanctuary for trout opting to wait out the purge rather than migrate south.

Harvey changed all of that, however, and we may never see that survivable salinity level in the deeper water again. Thus far, we have not yet absorbed enough rain to drastically change things, but it is still early and it looks as though there is more to come. So what happens to an improving trout bite if we are fortunate enough to dodge another bullet and you are currently reading this week’s edition of The Record in a dry house? My best guess is that we will see little or no change short term damage and long term damage will depend on the amount of rain they receive above us. The fish are resilient and, with the exception of Harvey, they have always figured out a way to stay home .

Local flooding is absorbed and purged very quickly. I don’t think what has been a very good redfish bite will miss a beat all the way from East Pass to Blue Buck Point, but I do look for the trout bite to be more consistent on the south end of the lake. Sunday morning, prior to the arrival of Nicholas, Dale LeDoux and Jimmy Martindale enjoyed a very good bite on the Causeway reef. “We were going to throw live bait, but decided that we may just be wasting money if the fish weren’t there,” said Martindale. Dale caught three solid trout on the first drift with a three quarter ounce bone colored Trap and the bite never slowed down.” Both anglers said the trout they caught in less than eight feet of water were smaller. “I think our best bite was probably in 12 to 14 feet of water,” said LeDoux.

Very seldom do I get any reports from the upper end of Toledo Bend, but Johnny Breaux says they have been doing really well on some very solid

bass for the past couple of weeks. “Even with the low water we are finding a lot of fish in the back half of the creeks,” said Breaux. He was also quick to point out that they have also been enjoying a very consistent bite on school bass in the two to three pound class. “They will jump all over a topwater,” said Breaux, “but I have also been catching a lot of my fish on a weightless Fluke.”

Bobby Bradley fishes the south end of Toledo Bend exclusively and he said that they are already starting to catch yellow bass on spoons

jigging the deep tree lines. “This is a little early for me,” said Bradley, “but I’ll take it. ”He initially found the fish while drop-shotting for Kentucky bass. “When it got to the point that I just couldn’t stick a fish I switched over to a spoon and sure enough we were on top of a school of yellow bass.”

At one time Bradley was one of the better tournament fishermen that I ever fished with or against. Today he fishes for only yellow bass,

Kentuckies, crappie and bream. “With nine grandkids under the age of ten I have to fish for something a little easier to catch,” he added.

Let’s hope for the best with Nicholas so we can get back to football and fishing!


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