- An Impossible Dream? by
- Fish Four States in One Day
- As an outdoors writer/photographer I certainly get my share of chances
to go on some incredible fishing excursions. While I rarely pick up a rod
when on assignment, I've met, interviewed and learned much from some of
the best interior, coastal and offshore anglers in the country. A great
deal of my time is spent traveling to tiny fishing villages, living in
motels, rustic camps or lodges, and on the water in every kind of vessel
imaginable, from kayaks to palatial sportfishing yachts.
- A recent invite to target cobia and amberjack interested me greatly.
I've always been fascinated by lemonfish, those wonderfully neurotic creatures
that pop up to visit from time to time. There's nothing more entertaining
than watching the sheer pandemonium that ensues on board as anglers lunge
for any rods and reel within reach. The mannerisms of this particular species
are so vastly different than what we have come to accept as normal behavior
from other fish.
- I also have grown to love the mystery of targeting big snapper, amberjack
and grouper at the countless rigs, wrecks and reefs that are scattered
across the northern Gulf. I'm always amazed at how these reef dwellers
have mastered the art of using the structure where they live to cut lines
and evade capture. Just about anyone can catch a snapper. But trophy reef
anglers know that subduing the big ones is much more of a challenge and
involves more finesse and technique than people realize.
- What was so intriguing about this trip was the schedule proposed by
my hosts. The plan was to target these fish in parts of four states - Louisiana,
Mississippi, Alabama and part of the Florida Panhandle. The catch was that
we would do it all in a single day.
- "Impossible," I thought to myself. "There's absolutely
Tactics for Jetty Trout by Chester Moore,
- Crafty Techniques for Jetty Trout
- Have you ever made it to your favorite jetty
system an hour or so before dawn, tied on a topwater plug and proceeded
to catch big speckled trout one after the other?
- I have and must say just thinking about those
trips gives me chills and inspires me to share with you a slightly different
approach to jetty fishing for specks than you might have heard before.
Most jetty action during the summer involves fishing live shrimp under
a popping cork next to the rocks. This method is of course very effective
and can yield some wonderful catches, however, it does not address the
structure of the jetties themselves which leaves things open to chance
too much for my liking.
- When most anglers put on shrimp, they simply
go along the rocks and wait for the trout to come to them. They would stand
a far better chance if they instead learn where to find the trout...
- Bird is the Word by Capt. Robert Brodie
- Birds show the way to the action in the summer!
- When it comes to fishing the Louisiana marsh
there are many different avenues to pursue for catching the wealth of fish
that teem in these Cajun waters. For example, there are plenty of reefs,
keys, grass beds, coves, and points that provide top-notch wade fishing
for anglers literally willing to get their feet wet. However, many of those
same areas can be easily fished by boat fishermen using trolling motors,
a more and more common practice in these waters.
- The waters in mention are those surrounding the
islands that make up the most northeastern sector of the entire Louisiana
marsh realm. Some of those more prominent names include Isle au Pitre,
Door Point, Brush Island, Elephant Point Island, and Martin Island. These
sections of Louisiana marsh land are merely 11-miles or more off Mississippi's
mainland, say from the Pass Christian Small Craft Harbor located on the
south side of U.S. Hwy. 90.
- However, there are many large bays and coves
in this section of Cajun marsh, and in these more open bodies of water
excellent fishing under diving gulls can be found throughout the summer
months. At times, especially if the weather remains mild, a chance of hot
bird fishing can be enjoyed well into November...
- Unchartered Waters - by Capt. Mel Berman
- High fuel prices have the charter industry in
- While federal and state fishery regulators conjure
up management schemes to maintain certain spawning potential ratios, the
rapidly increasing price of fuel has dramatically changed that equation.
This is a pivotal moment in the history of Florida fishing when recreational
boat owners, charter skippers and the commercial fishing industry have
to seriously evaluate the cost/benefit ratio of offshore fishing.
- Tampa Bay skippers, like Randy Rochelle, not
only have to pay at least $4 a gallon to gas his Pro Cat charter vessel,
he's also faced with the reluctance of potential clients to spend money
which they need for the necessities of life...
- Gulf Coast Closeup - by Vernon Summerlin
- Fort Morgan to Gulf Shores, Alabama
- For the last few years my wife,
Cathy, and I spend a week on the Fort Morgan peninsula west of Gulf Shores,
Alabama. As a kid from L.A. (lower Alabama), I spent a lot of time at Fort
Morgan when my dad was on the commission charged with restoring the old
fort. There were two fishing piers then but have since been destroyed,
as were many of the buildings including the old hotel. Now there is a museum
at the fort that tells its history - more about that later.
- I love going back there for the nostalgia (as a kid, I had the run
of the place) and, more importantly, to catch fish I missed back then.
I fished a lot there as youngster with an ever back lashing bait caster
with black Dacron line pulling in croakers and pin fish - but I didn't
know about redfish and specks in the late 1940s. I do now and I'm making
up for lost time.
- My favorite places to fish for specs and reds are Navy Cove, St. Andrews
Bay and the bay side beach north from Fort Morgan to the point at the mouth
of Mobile Bay. Another place I've fished, but not as often, is Little Lagoon.
Little Lagoon is another splendid fishing hole, especially for trout, that
extends from Gulf Shores west to the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge,
and it's not little, about 12 miles long. They had to call it something
and I guess they chose "little" because it's not as large as
Big Lagoon near Pensacola...
- OUR DEPARTMENTS...
- Paddling Out - Quiet
Water, Quiet Fishing - by Jeff Herman
- Rod & Reel'n Offshore - Stealth vs. "Hoodoo"
- by Patrick Lemire
- Equipment Notebook
Boat Storage - by David Ayers
- The Bay Naturalist
- The Funky Flatfish
- by John Hook
- The Fly Guy -
Fly Fishing for Cobia
- by Pete Cooper, Jr.
- Tackle Time
- Antique Lures - by
- Bait Hook
- The Care and Feeding of Cobia - by Jim Martin
- From the Publisher...
- Besides all these great articles and departments, Gulf Coast Fisherman
is the only source for the Wells Daily Fishing Forecast.
Each issue carries three months of the Wells Daily
Fishing Forecast - with Monthly Fishing Calendars. Also, don't forget
about the Advance Planning Calendars in each issue that takes you out three
months past the current issue. This will provide what you need to intelligently
plan your fishing trips - hours, weeks, and up to six months in advance!
- Top saltwater guides and fishermen use the Wells Daily Fishing Forecast - shouldn't you be using it ,too?...
- "The fisherman that knows what the currents
are doing has the advantage - over fish and fishermen!"
- And remember - "Fish feed everyday, somewhere
" - Harold Wells
- Gary Ralston