Mother Nature has lots of ways to move water: Tides, gravity and wind are the big three.
With a north wind blasting its gale-force winds across south Louisiana since late Tuesday, let’s settle on the “wind” factor, because this was a hard-enough blow to move lots of water.
Most fishermen know what to do when wind, or any other one (or all three) combine to move water in their favorite fishing spot.
Head to the runouts, right?
OK, so pro bass anglers call them “drains,” but no matter what name you choose, it’s the place where water is moving from one place to another — and usually through a small opening.
The reason runouts hold the fish anglers seek is because it holds the fish and forage the fish fishermen seek seek.
And today, when freshwater and saltwater predator species are trying to bulk up for the winter’s cold water, there’s no better time than to try to fool heavily feeding fish with something that looks like the food they’re seeking.
With water moving, the first though is to position yourself on the down-flow point or bank, the place where you’d first expect any baitfish, shrimp, crawfish or anything else a fish will eat to wash through the runouts.
Not so fast.
To understand the “why not” here, consider the natural tendency for most finfish (even baitfish like cocahoe minnows and storm minnows) is to swim upstream. (Why? Ask Mother Nature.)
While that outfall-down flow area is likely holding enough action to make a good fishing trip great, the point on the runout’s upflow side is just as likely to hold fish, maybe even bigger fish.
Naturally, you have to change your presentation: Say you’re casting a crankbait or a soft-plastic something on a jighead and it’s a given that you’re going to cast into the runout and work the lure out on the downflow side. That looks natural, right?
With the lure moving towards you, line watching is mandatory. The slightest twitch in the line could the “strike” signal — a predator fish facing into the current has taken the bait — and with fish, lure and line moving at you, reeling faster to grab line is a must before setting the hook.
When trying the upflow point, cast into the moving water, then work the bait upstream and wait for a hard strike. That’s because the predator fish is facing into the current, too, and he’s hitting a bait that’s moving more slowly than food being washed down the current.
Try this the next time you find a runout and don’t find feeding fish. More than likely you’re there at the right time, you just might not be in the exact right place.
LSU team qualifies
Tim Morris of Donaldsonville teamed with Richard Murdock of Lawrenceville, Ga. on a LSU fishing team that finished fourth in last weekend’s National Guard FLW Texas Regional Championship on Lake Somerville in Texas. Their spot earned them a berth in the FLW College National Championship.
Cabela’s and the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries are teaming for a free, one-day Women-only Hunting Course set 8 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Saturday at the Waddill Education Center on North Flannery Road.
Hunting safety, scouting, trailing and rifle, shotgun and archery shooting are on the schedule.
The class is limited to 25 women 16 and older.
Call Christine Pocorello at Cabela’s-Gonzales (225) 743-3433.