Just when all signs were pointing in the right directions to Sulphur Mine Lake and the action on trout and bass near Venice, two weekends of rain and wind have turned prospects into a guessing game.
And there’s more rain and wind coming Friday and Saturday in advance of another cold front, this one stronger than the two that blew in the two previous weekends.
It’s easy enough to report what happened in the past 10 days: The Wall in St. Bernard Parish waters is holding solid 2-to-3 pound speckled trout, and the nearby marshes are giving up redfish and bass, and Sulphur Mine Lake was loaded with hungry trout, but only when folks were able to fish the days after rains and winds settled. Saturday and Sunday will not be those days. Early Friday and next week’s weekdays hold the best promise.
Friday’s 5-to-10 knot southwest winds and light seas will give way to lighter easterly winds into early Saturday, then 10-to-20 knot north and northeast winds will build throughout the day into Sunday. The Lake Pontchartrain area and waters east of the Mississippi River should be fishable through Saturday morning before strong northerly winds and rougher seas take hold through early Monday.
Look for a warm Saturday morning before temperatures drop into the mid 50s Sunday morning with greater chances of rain coming late Friday and lingering into early Sunday. Expect morning temperatures in the 50s and afternoon highs in the 70s through Tuesday.
The rivers are rising: The Mississippi, 3.5-to-4.6 foot readings at New Orleans, and Atchafalaya rivers, 3.6 to 4.3 at Bayou Sorrel, are the result of rains in these basins.
The Atchafalaya’s rise means fishing the canals is a must during the coming days. The push of water usually affects lakes and bayous more than it does canals, where bass and sac-a-lait are more likely to feed in clearer water. Working canal banks out to the first dropoffs and first grassbeds off the banks should be your targets. Clouds will prevail through the weekend, which means bass and sac-a-lait are less likely to hover under mats of hyacinth and heavily matted grass. Spinnerbaits, golf jerkbaits and topwaters will produce bass strikes, and try blue/white tubes and shiners for sac-a-lait.
Along the coast
Definitely redfish time. In places like Delacroix, ponds in the Biloxi Marsh, the upper reaches of the MRGO, the Theriot marshes and the Lafitte area, it’s possible to take limits of redfish and bass by working swimbaits, heavy wire spinnerbaits, VuDu Shrimp and Gulp! Shrimp near marshy banks. Remember the east wind will push baitfish into ponds on the east side of the Mississippi River and to the western shorelines of lakes from Lafitte to Theriot and Dulac.
Sulphur Mine Lake produced limits of trout on black/chartreuse plastics last week, but those catches fell off this week.