My first trip of the new year

I was able to get out to my beloved south Louisiana marsh and get my first fishing trip of the year in. Well, kind of…I never left the pier. 🙂

I got a call from a buddy of mine who said the fish had been biting off the pier of his camp in Fourchon and he asked me if I wanted to go. I replied, “Only if you’ll take an old fly fisherman with you.” He replied that it didn’t matter so naturally, I took him up on the opportunity to make this an easy trip.

We arrived after sundown Friday evening and after a cold beer, I headed out to the pier to fish under the lights. I tied on a pink Lafleur’s Charlie that I thought looked like glass minnows and after a few casts, I was bringing my first speckled trout of the year to hand.

I quickly released the 12-inch fish because I thought we would be able to catch a few larger trout that would end up in hot grease the next day. The fishing was slow. I did end up catching a half dozen and I ended up keeping three of them for the table.

Our Saturday morning began with biscuits, fried eggs, and coffee. I was told the fish had been biting later in the day so there was no need to fish the pier before sunrise. The air was cool and crisp, and the sun was just starting to peek over the horizon as we sipped the last bit of our coffee. I was eager to get some quality fish on my fly rod, so as soon as I had downed that last bit of coffee, I headed out on the pier. As I got to my spot, I could see several other fishermen casting bait in the distance. I knew it would be a good day of fishing.

I was throwing my Lafleur Charlie again and it wasn’t long before I felt the first tug on my line. I knew right away that this first fish was a nice one as it fought to free itself. I brought to hand a beautiful 19-inch speckled trout, a highly sought-after species in South Louisiana.

Soon after, I found myself lifting another chunky 16-inch trout up over the pier. I wish I could say the fishing was non-stop as we caught trout after trout, but that was the last trout I would catch that morning. The pier was bustling with other anglers, but they were not having much luck at all. There were four young guys fishing on the point to our left, however, where were doing quite well. They were the only fishermen we saw who were actually catching fish. In fact, after about 6 hours in that same spot, we watched them pick up a stringer of about 75 trout that they had managed to catch before they headed home. We eased our way to their spot after they left but we didn’t get a bite.

Somewhere around 1 PM, we decided to call it a day. We cleaned the fish we had caught and headed back to Baton Rouge to spend some quality time with our wives. The trip was not only about catching fish, but also about the experience of being out on the water and enjoying the natural beauty of South Louisiana. The sights, sounds, and smells of the area made for a memorable and enjoyable day. It was also about spending some time with an old buddy of mine whom I hadn’t fished with in a couple of years. The last time I had been to Fourchon was to help him clean up after Hurricane Ida a year-and-a-half ago. The devastation down there is still horrid, and I pray for those who are still trying to rebuild. I am looking forward to some warmer weather and a chance to get down there again to do some sight fishing for redfish.