Ben Roussel 02/12/2016 | Posted in Cuda, Cuda 12, Fishing, Fishing Reports, Fly Fishing, Internationalisation, JK Team Posts, Kraken, Saltwater, Saltwater Fishing, United States
Every year a group of kayak fishers from Alabama makes an annual pilgrimage to Grand Isle in search of redfish. I’ve had the great pleasure on joining them on many of these trips and look forward to it every year. This year that trip happened just before the JK Media House boys rolled into town. I’d get a chance to fish with both groups for a couple days. This particular day I was fishing with my buddy James from Montgomery. The weather forecast had me scratching my head on where I thought we could do best that morning, Fourchon was what I came up with, a spot we’ve fished together in the past. When winds are stiff I tend to lean on fishing in Fourchon due to the greater presence of mangroves, which seem to provide more of a wind block than your standard marsh grass.
A great start to the day, however, things were pretty slow going immediately after that. We fished a few tried and true areas and had little luck, but finally there were signs of life. I heard some crashing on a far bank and instead of being one redfish raising hell, it was a school! Nothing gets your adrenaline pumping more than running down a school of reds. I hollered at James that we needed to head that way and followed them as they went through a small cut onto a flat on the other side of some islands. As I’m sitting in the cut I see them swim right in front of me – 4, 5, 6, 8, 12, damn, they just keep coming! Not sure how many reds were in that school, but it was an awesome sight. I threw a fly in the mix and immediately got a hookup. While waiting on James to make his way over I decided it was a good idea to throw my Matrix shad in there too and soon I doubled up, bent rods in each hand! Utter gluttony I know, but I couldn’t help myself. Meanwhile those two fish kicked up enough sediment that James had a hard time spotting anything and was never able to pull another fish out. He was left with a rod in hand as I was giggling like a schoolgirl, he got a pretty good screenshot of it from his GoPro.
We lost the school after that and split up again. I set up on a point for trout, and caught a few that were undersize, but kept getting distracted by reds that were crashing the shoreline at a nearby cut. Of course I had to pull anchor and chase them down.
After the reds things slowed down through the mid-afternoon, they weren’t crashing bait like they had been earlier and everything went quiet for a while. James and I eventually met back up and instead of heading out we decided to fish some marsh at the far end of a big pond. That marsh led to a cut that went from the big pond to a canal. I worked each point in that cut and finally caught a decent fish, a nearly 19″ trout.
While I was hauling in that trout I hear James hooked up back in the cut, his reel peeling drag. It was a big bull red and the fight was on!
Earlier in the day James had landed his personal best redfish at 29″, this beast was about to eclipse that, if he could get it in the boat. The red had hit a topwater that James was throwing and it came from a bank in a cut that I had just worked – right place, right time. After some good forearm pumping runs the red had given up and James was able to slide him over the bow for a brief photo op.
What a great way to end the day – you know the fishing is good when someone lets out a Rick Flair Woo!. It always feels good when you’re not sure where to head in the morning and by the evening you know that you ended up making a pretty good decision because of the results. We paddled out as the sun was setting and made our way back to camp to meet up with the rest of the crew. Jameson and Brooks would be getting in later that night, giving me an opportunity to paddle the new Cuda HD the next two days. After the first two successful days of fishing I was hoping the action would stay hot as they were prepared to do a good bit of filming over the course of an entire week.