Gulf Coast Inshore Fishing Trip
Angling Ai ventured down to the coastal waters of South Louisiana to put a few mold designs to the test. In the most recent blog, “Inshore Saltwater Fishing: Lure Mold Selection,” a couple of molds were showcased to target Redfish and Speckled Trout. These species thrive in open water bays and shores lined with marsh grass. Mud bottoms dominate the area, and oyster reefs often provide habitat for bait fish. The 3.6” Action Worm and 3.8” RipRap Swim Bait molds from Angling Ai provided the right ingredients for some great fishing.
Fishing For the Best
Scheduling a fishing adventure can take a lot of work. Choosing your destination is just the beginning. Using your knowledge to select an appropriate time to go fishing is hit or miss. What time of year is best, what will the temperatures be like, and are there likely to be storms, wind, etc.? Traveling 1,200 miles wishing for good conditions is all that one can do. Preparing the soft plastic baits was an undertaking. Prepping for clean and dirty water, we created baits that matched the hatch, silhouette well in stained water, and bright colors that stand out.
We had access to a center console boat for our trip. Maintenance was done on the 20-foot Xpress bay boat, and we even added a Minn Kota Terrova with I-pilot. Who would have thought that adding that trolling motor would have been such a trip saver, as the 8-foot power pole would develop an issue on the first day?
Creating Success in Unfavorable Conditions
Weather reports were calling for a 95% chance of rain and thunderstorms the day before we would board our plane. All we could do was hope that the predicted fronts would stay north or miraculously slow down. Watching the weather 3-4 days before was absolutely gorgeous. Little to no wind was forecasted, with clear skies and temperatures in the upper 70s.
Day 1: Wind, wind, and more wind was prevalent. The calm days were no more. 15 mph winds with gusts to 25 mph were forecasted in our area. By 10:00 A.M., the wind was going to be an issue. Water clarity was going to be an unpleasant factor. We decided to test open water early and try to get as much time over reefs and moving current as possible. Josh and Ronnie were ready with spinning rigs and popping corks. 3.6” Action Worms in transparent chartreuse with some chartreuse glitter would stand out in the water. Gary rigged the 3.8” RipRap Swimbait on his 7’6” Sixgill MH action Scythe.
Traveling down the waterway, we spotted the first area to cast our lures. Instantly, both corks went down as fast as they hit the water. Speckled trout were on their way into the boat. Shrimp were jumping on top of the water in an effort to escape. The tail action of the Action Worm Mold from Angling Ai mimics a shrimp in panic in the water; its profile is similar to a shrimp when at rest, as well. Several trout made their way to the boat in this flurry of activity. Ronnie, who has never been saltwater fishing, had a moment he will never forget.
Popping his cork aggressively, a redfish quickly reacted to his Action Worm. Drag began to peel, and the rod was bending. His adrenaline quickly elevated, and the fight was on.
Gary was throwing the RipRap in purple with blue glitter and a fire red tail. This color tends to stand out as a bright color but also silhouettes well. Simply swimming this bait back to the boat was drawing the ire of many trout.
Water clarity was a slight issue at this time. Bait visibility was around a foot and a half. Within 2 hours, bait visibility would be reduced to 6 to 8 inches. We left our first stop in hopes of finding more fish. As the day went on, the wind became more of a hindrance. Remember we talked about the power pole malfunction earlier? Our day was saved by the efficiency and power of the Minn Kota Terrova. Spot-Lock is surely a great asset to have on the front of the boat.
We made our way around the open water bays and smaller waterways of the marsh. Action worms and Rip Raps were responsible for over 100 fish caught this day.
Day 2: Mother nature surely decided to roll through with a vengeance. Heavy rains and wind were accompanied by lightning and thunder. When it comes to fishing, rain and wind are one thing, 3.21 Jigga Watts is another. We decide to wait for the main front to pass. It was being followed by another front as well, but we just might get a window. The main front of the storm slowed down, and the skies cleared at around 2 P.M. We had a very brief window as the next front was almost right behind it. The second front was strictly strong wind, but we were ready to get some time in on the water.
We decided to try and strictly chase redfish as we got to the dock. Strong winds through the night and morning muddied up the water, and there was more wind on the way. Ronnie and Gary were rigged with the RipRap, and Josh still had on his Ole’ Standard Action Worm in chartreuse. Gary drew blood first with purple with blue glitter and fire tail RipRap. Two speckled trout running some flats fell to the 3.8” swimming sensation.
Josh caught the first redfish of the day on the Action Worm under a cork, and it was a beautiful fish. Right after we got Josh’s fish released, we entered another flat with a slight cove tucked away in the back corner. Gary soon had the second redfish of the day on the end of his line.
We continued to fish for a while catching a few speckled trout, and Josh landed another redfish before we returned to where we started. Time was running out on our quick trip to the coast, and we still had one primary goal in mind: we needed to get Ronnie hooked up with a redfish on the swim bait. He was throwing that chartreuse-tailed purple with blue glitter RipRap. Surely, there would be a nice redfish just waiting to oblige. We troll motored into a flat and happened to see the wake of the beast we were searching for. The trolling motor had slightly spooked him, and he turned and began to swim away. Ronnie presented the RipRap with a perfect cast, and the action of the lure could not be resisted. The fish turned quickly and then inhaled the swimbait.
Success, A Wonderful Feeling
Traveling 1200 miles and fishing is a great experience regardless of what usually happens. We arrived in some undesirable conditions. Conditions that tested the worthiness of the lures we created to fish with were high winds, dirty and stained water, fronts passing through, and being limited on time. But a great experience was had by our team.
We did have success on the water catching fish; however, it goes beyond our time on the water. We created and produced our baits together. We enjoyed our fishing trip from start to finish. Making your own soft plastic baits allows you to enjoy all the aspects of fishing as a whole. Everything that you do as a bait maker propels you into the wonderful world of fishing. If the bait molds mentioned in this blog interest you, the 3.8” RipRap and 3.6” Action Worm molds are available at Anglingai.com, with a wide variety of other molds that fit any angler's desire.