- Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:00 pm
I used to drive several hours from Houston down to Port Aransas. Then I got to know Christmas Bay. I fish it quite a bit. I suppose it's my home water.
But it is heavily fished. Go any weekend and count the yaks stacked up at the creek mouths along Churchill Bayou. Just keep paddling. I don't believe there a lot of resident reds left in Christmas. Personally, I don't. Too much take, not enough release. There are a few reds held up in the cordgrass, in the back channels and lakes, where the motor boats can't get to them and the yaks don't bother. They're smaller fish but can be a lot of fun on a fly rod. You have to work hard to find them, but you get to know where they live. Best thing about Christmas Bay is Cold Pass. A good tide can bring big reds in from the bay. I think it's very seasonal. Summer can be kind of tough. But the Fall can be epic. Gangs of reds come in from the bay. They rake the line of cordgrass along Cold Pass, flushing shrimp and crab in front of them. You can spot them at some distance, thrashing in the water, driving up the line. Paddle hard to get in front of them, hold 50 yards off the grass to stay out of their line, wait for them to get within range, then take your best shot. I've broken a couple of fly rods on these boys. It's a lot like chasing permit along a line of mangroves, on an in-coming tide, if you've ever been so lucky. But I think this is better, way better. Cause it's just you in your yak, and the fish. No guide, no skiff. It's real personal.