Texas Saltwater Fishing Report April 1996

Texas Saltwater Fishing ReportGALVESTON – Captain Jim Leavelle of Tarpon Adventures of Texas, says that we can look forward to some excellent trophy trout fishing in Galveston’s Bays during April. “Most of the bigger fish will be caught by hardcore waders in the coves along West Bay’s south shoreline, says Leavelle, but about this time of year is also a good time to start looking toward the area, in East Bay, from the Bolivar Flats to Pepper Point.” Jim also points out that Trinity Bay is another area to consider for prime fishing in April. “It all depends on whether they’ve had a lot of rain up north, he says, If they have the freshwater runoff can slow Trinity’s fishing.” If wadefishing’s not your cup of tea Leavelle points out that April is also a good month for fishing some of the shell reefs that dot East Bay. “Dollar Reef should be getting right and the spoil banks along the west side of the ship channel are always a good shot for some keeper trout and redfish. The technique will primarily be drift fishing with shad and shrimptails.” Texas Saltwater Fishing ReportFREEPORT – Keeper sized redfish and speckled trout will be moving into the shallow flats along the south shoreline to feed and spawn in April. Working the grass shorelines with topwater lures is your best bet for cashing in on some excellent action. Also, this is the time for fly fishermen to try this area. The water temperature is perfect for these fish to move into the shallow waters and they will take any number of poppers or dry flies. In order to get to Christmas Bay fish have to move through the great pass. San Luis Pass should give up some excellent catches of trout and reds to fishermen either wading the Galveston side flats or fishing the channel on the FreePort side of the bridge. And don’t overlook Cold Pass for some superb speckled trout fishing and be on the lookout for flounder to start moving into the area during the latter part of the month. Another are especially suited for fishermen without a boat is the SurfSide jetties. These rocks will be holding everything from trout and redfish to flounder and the occasional jack fish. Working baits close to the rocks is your best bet for consistent catches, but you better take along plenty of tackle because these rocks can take their toll of unwary fishermen. MATAGORDA – East Matagorda bay should be turning on with some huge speckled trout. Broken-back lures and the famous Rebel Jumpin’ Minnow are excellent for taking the trophy size fish that will be cruising the shallow flats feeding on schools of mullet. Wading the shoreline reefs and flats is the best way to approach these fish, but don’t forget to drift the mid-bay reefs with shadtails for some excellent redfish and trout action. Fly fishermen should also check out this shallow bay. The clear and shallow water is great for small poppers, streamers, and dry flies. A floating line is preferred because of the shallow depth, but a sinking tip may be preferred for areas around drop-offs. ROCKPORT – This could be the best year for the Rockport area since the “Big Freeze”. Speckled trout fishing should be excellent around Mud Island, Hog Island, and Estes on topwater plugs such as Cordell’s Broken-back Redfin and Rebel’s Jumpin’ Minnow in early April. If that doesn’t work try switching to soft plastic Cocahoe minnows later in the month. Cocahoes are used more than shrimptails, in this area, because they are a bit more buoyant and since most of the fishing is over shallow grass this makes a big difference. The fishing around the inside of the bays should be improving during this time since the fish will be moving out of the deeper water and onto the flats to feed. In these areas a live shrimp rigged under a popping cork will bring excellent results. CORPUS CHRISTI – “Baffin Bay will be hot to trot in April”, says Captain Don Hand of Don’s Guide Service. “April is the time of year when the big trout, in the 30 to 31 inch range, move into the Baffin area, he continues, Also, the Land Cut from the mouth to markers 10, 11, and 12 should be turning on about the same time with fish to 28 inches.” As for baits that will take these monsters, Hand suggests topwater plugs such as the Rebel Jumpin’ Minnow and Cordell’s Broken-back Redfin. “These are great mullet imitations, says Hand, and fish of this size primarily feed on larger baitfish.” Other lures that Hand suggests for taking Baffin Bay trout are shrimptails under an Alameda Rattling Cork, Mr. Whiffle, and shrimptails worked alone on a lead head. LOWER LAGUNA – “This could be the best year for the Lower Laguna since the big freeze” according to guide Captain J.D. Whitley. “The fish usually start filling out with eggs in late March through early April, says Whitley, and that’s when we start working the shallows with topwater plugs or soft plastic tails rigged about 6 inches under a Mansfield Mauler.” Whitley also says that this time of year is when the trophy sized speckled trout become extremely aggressive. “These fish will push a wake just like a big redfish when they’re running over the grass beds, J.D. says, but they run a little higher in the water than a red.” “People who want a chance at a trophy trout should really consider trying the Lower Laguna in April, says Whitley.

– Texas Saltwater Fishing Guide

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