Scouting for a Tournament

The 2019 kayak fishing starts off with a fun tournament next Saturday the 19th called the Minimalist Challenge put on by Bayou Coast Kayak Club (BCKFC) which is one of the largest kayak clubs in the country.  What’s neat about this format is you get 5 mystery baits and you can bring one bait of your own.  There’s no limit on the rods you can bring.  They limit the tournament to 135 entries.  The goal is 3 slot redfish under 27”, 15 trout over 12”, and 10 flounder if you can find one.
The weather forecast for this tournament is terrible as usual with 50% chance of rain and west winds averaging 20 knots.  Based on this forecast I focus my scouting on areas that will favor a west wind.  Before I even get out on the water I spend a good amount of time on google maps looking at structure, cuts, deep bayous, and sand bars so that I have a plan on attack before I even get out of the water.  The image in the first pic

shows a small canal that feeds off a major waterway.  The tide will be an incoming tide so that would favor this spot.  Bait should be funneling through this which should be a great ambush spot for redfish and trout. 
This next image
shows a small bayou that feeds off another major waterway.  I will definitely try this spot to see if fish are ambushing bait there. You will also notice the circle underneath that is a protected pond from a west wind. Water should stay somewhat clean even with the strong winds and hopefully holds redfish. The last spot shows a cut that is basically a washout along a large canal.  I love spots like this because it funnels bait and with a west wind the water should be blowing through this cut.  In the winter time redfish become lazy and want the least amount of effort when feeding so I like to focus on cuts rather than open flats especially if the water temps are in the low 50’s.


 On my scouting trip I had mixed results, but did find some quality redfish. Trout were hard to come by and easy to catch last month. Go figure.  Hope this may help you when planning for your next tournament! 

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