OK, anybody have an idea how to build an ark? We could follow the biblical instructions, but those seem light on complete blueprints.

Looks like we’ll get a break from the torrents of the last week with the prediction of high pressure building over the coast. A return to southerly winds means a push of clear Gulf water should bring clearer saltwater conditions and catches should improve over the holiday weekend.

Catch rates are getting better on the east side of the Mississippi River, but winds and muddy water continues to be a problem along the Central Coast from Four Bayous Pass west into the western end of the Last Island chain. Find clear water there, and more than likely you’re going to catch trout.

Redfish are everywhere and ready to take a variety of lures and live bait.

For action, coastal sharks, like blacktips, came back on the “can-catch” list Wednesday, and could boost the take-home catch for coastal and offshore trips.

With continued rising water in the major rivers, the Verret Basin and the Pearl River system are the two top spots for freshwater trips.

Weather

Southwest winds east of the Mississippi River should turn to the south, then southeast, like it will be along the Central Coast, but the 10-15 knot winds will keep 1-2 foot seas in the offing through late Friday. Expect much calmer conditions Sunday nearshore, although 2-4 footers will linger offshore through the weekend.

Expect hot summertime temperatures with moderate chances of afternoon rain and thunderstorms through the holiday.

The Mississippi and Atchafalaya rivers continue rising with the Mississippi to hit 35.3 feet at Baton Rouge, 13.5 feet at New Orleans by Monday and a hike to 8.8 feet at the Bayou Sorrel gauge on the Atchafalaya.

Freshwater

Gary Haney and Todd Campbell gave a hint about what’s going on in the Belle River area. Their extraordinary 21.42-pound bass catch in the Junior Southwest Bassmaster’s fundraiser over last weekend came from run-outs along Belle River. It included a 5.77-pounder. They used soft-plastic crawfish imitations.

Over in the Pearl River, “wood” patterns worked on the West Pearl. Flipping downed trees with a Baby Brush Hog (California 420 color) produced bass and goggle-eye as did black/red flake Speed Craws. On the East Pearl, the southern marshes are giving up redfish on spinnerbaits and shad-colored Rat-L-Traps, lures that are working on bass in the upper reaches of the river, too.

The coast

Live shrimp is working most places. Redfish are in the Delacroix and Hopedale marshes (gold spoons, topwaters) and north of Grand Isle. Use double-rigged plastics to take trout in bays and open-water areas south of Cocodrie and Theriot.