As things begin to cool off, the coastal fishing only gets better
Story and Photography by Robert Sloan
Sweet September — The month when all things hunting and fishing begin to change. We get our first cool fronts after many weeks of sweltering heat, plus we get out the shotguns, load up and go after doves and teal.
Then there are birds to contend with on the bays. As the migration of shad and shrimp move into the open waters of our coastal estuaries trout and reds go on a feeding frenzy and the gulls will lead opportunistic fishermen to the action. It’s all good right about now. Just make sure you’ve got a new hunting and fishing license and you are good to go.
With such a buffet of options where does one start?
“That’s easy,” says guide Dodd Coffey, who runs fishing charters out of Port O’Connor. “Hit the surf for some of the best trout fishing of the year. We have a lot of calm days during September. After the cool fronts begin moving in the surf is guaranteed to go flat and the tide will be clean and green to the beach.”
The unique thing about fishing the surf is that we have the opportunity to catch bigger trout than normal. I’m talking about solid fish in the three to five pound class. One of the best ways to catch them is with topwater plugs early, then switch over to soft plastics as the sun heats things up.
“I like to fish the surf with topwater plugs and slow sinking Mirrolures,” says Matagorda based guide Charlie Paradoski. “I’ll be using a She Dog or Super Spook at daylight. As the topwater bite slows down I’ll switch over to a Catch 2000 or a Catch 5. Those are slow sinking lures that look a lot like mullet. Right about now the surf run trout are feeding on both shrimp and mullet. The heavier trout will usually be caught on suspending lures. Some of the better colors are pink/silver/chartreuse, black/gold and red/gold/yellow. With the topwater lures I like pink/silver, black/gold/orange and bone.”