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Kayak fishing the Lone Star State...

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By karstopo
We launched from Caney Creek in my friend’s 22’ Shoalwater before dawn yesterday. BTW, what a nice boat to fish from! We fished two reefs, both within reasonable kayak range of any Caney Creek area launch. We even saw a few kayakers close by. One reef, the first one we fished, my buddy power poled down about 80-90 feet from the visible shell. Water was a stirred green, between clear and sandy. Tide was ripping out. Wind was pretty light out of the SSW. Semi-foggy type of conditions. There was maybe as much current moving by this reef as I have ever fished.

He fished the same reef the day before and very quickly boxed 5 trout and two flounder. But according to the captain, the current was much stronger today than the previous day. Still, we managed to box 8 trout from 16-20”, plus caught a few borderline fish and had some long distance releases. He used a glow soft plastic with a straight chartreuse tail on a 1/8 ounce head. I started off with a weighted shrimp pattern on the fly rod. That got the big trout of the day at 20” and a couple of 15” fish. I moved to a straight tail soft plastic using the baitcasting gear and got a couple of fish, one 17” and a 16”. It was tough for both of us to manage the dynamics of the current as there was a very narrow payoff zone just next to the reef. We both tried a topwater and got nothing. After a time, the bite went to zero so we moved on to another nearby reef.

That reef we waded. We were looking for flounder mainly, but he said the reef was normally good for redfish, too. It was about knee deep with a substantial current moving over it. More a narrow strip of broken shell than reef, flanked by deeper water with a mud bottom. There, I picked up a couple of redfish, one about 20” on a tan Borski slider. He picked up a 19” red and a little flounder on a paddle tail. His back started messing with him so we quit that and tried the previous spot. The current had slackened and it was past the time of the projected low tide. We both picked up a flounder each, but both a little undersized. Came on in and had an excellent shrimp poor boy and onion rings at the Crab Trap.

No photos. If the captain doesn’t take photos, neither does the crew.
karstopo wrote:Water was a stirred green, between clear and sandy. Tide was ripping out. Wind was pretty light out of the SSW. Semi-foggy type of conditions.

Those are my favorite conditions to fish during the winter and early spring months.

karstopo wrote:No photos. If the captain doesn’t take photos, neither does the crew.

I like this rule.

Thanks for sharing your report in such detail no photos were necessary.
Shoalwater got his start by buying old Majek molds. He used to live on Bois d'Arc street in Lamar next to my friend Sherri (and married her).
Thanks for the report - perfect conditions yesterday to be on The Fall Bite.
What a great and informative report. I have only fished E. Matagorda by boat as well but always wanted to get back in a yak.

I have noticed a trend lately in which report writers are giving up more information as to the locations fished. For example, this wasn’t “fished E. Matagorda the other day...” but “launched from Caney Creek” and then gives specific reefs and descriptions of the underwater structure to help the next one of us that might happen to fish the area.

And my two cents on that is that we, the kayak fisherman on TKF, are becoming a closer knit group and understand there are enough fish out there for everyone. Even when the newbies that join start typically with “not looking for anyone’s honey holes or secret spots” there will be plenty of replies giving out really good information. Shoffer’s comment to my Rollover report even added pictures showing exactly where we were without blurring or pixelating the background, a true We went here, threw these lures, and caught a crap load of fish so you can too report.

Sorry to semi-hijack your thread karstopo but I just wanted to thank you and the other great writers on here for the reports recently. And to those who still blur the backgrounds, etc., this not intended to be a knock on you or anything. I understand there ARE certain spots you want to protect.
Mr. Watson, exactly correct - there's a lot of water out there, plenty for all to share. I've never seen too many kayaks fishing an area and, in fact, I like to see other kayaks in the water with me - I think power boaters need the exposure so they know to look for us.
I'm sure we can come up with examples in rivers and bass coves with waders or bass boats complaining about kayakers. Salt fish don't hang on a lie like many freshwater fish - instead, they travel with the bait.
Since every thread needs a photo - those other kayaks who beat us here this day didn't detract from our fishing, nor did we detract from theirs - it was easy to give them a wide berth - especially in the salt, there's plenty of water and fish for everybody.
In Texas inshore, there's 15,000 sq-mi less than 2' deep.
ImageJosh, about those cameras - you've done a great job journaling your fishing details. I did that a long time ago, but found photos and the kind of journaling we do on reports here and other forums to be more useful.
Keep those cameras and reports going...
Last edited by Ron Mc on Wed Nov 27, 2019 7:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Sounds like a great outing, thanks for the report.

Speaking of PB's - I have been out recently near a launch area - I was pulling in fish from areas the PB's were just running on by! Like you say - there is plenty of water out there, and lots of fish!
Terrific, informative fishing report, Karstopo, from one of our premier TKF wordsmiths! Yes, I felt your fishing thrills because you described the details so vividly.
But I do miss the photos, and would have taken some myself, or not hired that guide.
If I'm paying $750 for a guided trip, I'll damn sure take pics if I want to. And if anybody takes exception, they can meet my two friends Kung and Fu.
And Mike's point about kindly giving up some fishing locations is spot-on. I never resent kayakers around my fishing spots, especially if the powerboats stay away. There ARE enough fish in the sea!
Hell, Shoffer and I have even given specific directions on how to find E. Bay's immortal Two Titty Reef and E. Matty's Double HOOK-UP Reef! We caught easy trout limits at both places, neither one of them on any maps. Follow our lead and help us all find some gamefish! Onward, men!Image

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Well, not a guided trip, just a friend with a nice boat and knowledge of East Matagorda Bay. We’d been trying to get together to fish, but life has gotten in the way.

None of my fishing friends are photo takers or forum frequenters. I sort of go along with whatever they tend to do on their boats. I forget to take photos myself on some trips, but I like to have a few pictures to remember the trip by. It’s not like in the old days with the expense of buying and developing film.

Just because someone gives out an exact GPS coordinate on a spot doesn’t mean the people coming along next will necessarily catch fish there. Fish move. I know some spots that have very specific ways they need to be fished. Very narrow structure with very specific presentations. The San Bernard River can be like that. People cruise up and down that river fishing and one group will slay the fish and another will skunk or near skunk, essentially fishing the same spots within minutes of each other. I’ve been in the same boat there and had one person skunk, one get an easy fast limit and one be in between. Same lures, subtly different presentations.

I know myself I’ve paddled right by or over fish where someone with more experience or knowledge has literally pulled out good fish right from under my nose.

I’m a big believer in there are more quality fish out there than we know and good fish attracting structure yet to be discovered and fished correctly at the right time. I’ve been around long enough to know different places turn on in different seasons and in various water levels, winds, etc.

I love fishing with people that are highly skilled and have experience catching big trout. The friend I fished with the other day has caught a lot of 7,8,9 plus pound trout. I don’t believe he’s quite caught a 10 pound fish. He’s cracked 30”, but most 30” fish don’t go 10#. He was wade fishing next to another buddy that caught a 32” 11 pound trout. My buddy says it’s hard to understand just how big an 11 pound trout looks in person. He said it looks like it could eat a 6 pound trout.
As always, the advantage of a power boat is changing plans and running to another spot with different geography - never an option on a kayak plan, though mothershipping a kayak in a power boat often improves both.
Even better than a friend with a power boat is a friend who also guides, and working contract so your weekdays are flexible - a place I was at in the 90s.

Kars, in the case of bass, an 11-lb bass will try to eat a 6-lb'er
You men talk the truth and are willing to share. Kudos!
Our Hobie Navy is scheduled to fish ROLLOVER PASS again tomorrow at sunrise. The winds, tides, and Solunars are fantastic. If Shoffer's busy schedule intrudes, then it's ON like a neck bone for Wednesday morning.

There, is that specific enough for you?
Ha ha. Come join us if you can. We always catch gamefish and have a blast.
Onward, lads!

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Well done Karstopo. Good report. Thank you for sharing! Love to read others post and give kudos for doing so! I hope you don't mind that I only post once though. Don't want to hijack/distract from your post or give away our next trip by accident. :wink:
Karstopo, I'm sorry to "highjack" your fine fishing report, but please allow me to announce that our ROLLOVER TRIP planned for tomorrow is canceled.

I apologize for getting any hopes up, or ruining any plans to join our merry band.
This may become a friendly new TKF convention: issuing actual informal invitations to fish our proven spots! We enjoy good company.

And of course it's all free, and we expect some specific mind-blowing reports filed!

Yes, perhaps a new spirit of peace and love awaits us? Or maybe we just want to catch something good to eat?

Stay tuned for our next outing. And don't be shy about showing off your best spots, ha ha. It's a two-way deal. See you soon.
--Dandy Don

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All is well. Lively threads are good and I’ve never worried about hijacked threads. I mean, who out there doesn’t have a fishing conversation that doesn’t bounce from topic to topic?

Too bad about the trip tomorrow. I’m in a perpetual state of planning my next trip. My next one might be another boat trip, different boat, different buddy, from the last trip. If this buddy with the boat bails, it’ll be a kayak trip. Can’t lose.
Sorry to be like that damn Energizer bunny who "keeps on going," but Shoffer got his docket clear for tomorrow (Wednesday) sunrise yak-fishing at ROLLOVER PASS.

Kickingback is also in, and we're hoping Watson can saddle up, too, before his planned trip Dec. 10th. And in the new spirit of "friendly fishing," you're all invited!

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