Where to Fish?
The topic of Finding Fish inevitably leads to the "Where to Fish?" question. Put another way, where should I go? This very important question has many potential answers and depends on a number of factors. Here are my best advice and the factors involved in the decision. And I think you'll discover that fishing guides will agree...
Put simply: Choose a couple of areas that are easy for you to get to and learn those areas well.
Choose where to fish depending on the type of fishing you like to do and your ability to get around on the water. And make these choices based on the advice and information gathered by those who have explored the areas you live close to and will be fishing.
What I did, and what I think you should do, is buy one of Ray Crawford's books. He has spent countless hours exploring the inshore waters from Sabine Lake to the Upper Laguna Madre. He's split this large section of the coast into two books, an Upper Coast book, and a Coastal Bend book.
He focuses on wade and kayak fishing, gives details and aerial pictures of the spots, access points, and parking considerations, and sprinkles it all with advice. This advice ranges from times of the year to fish these areas and the species of fish you're likely to catch. This is an extremely valuable resource as you are trying to decide where to fish the vast Texas Gulf Coast. There are no other books like Ray's.
We're pleased to announce that Ray's books are now offered in the online store we share with Buggs Fishing.
Head to the online store where you'll find these books.
Keep reading to learn about the factors involved and help you make the best decision on where to fish.
Your ability to get around on the water is going to be a major factor in where you'll fish. If you're just starting out and only have the ability to wade, there will still be lots of options. Having a kayak, however, gives you a lot more. And then with a boat, you can motor almost anywhere. I like Ray's books because of the detailed maps and access points for wade and kayak fishermen.
Types of Fishing
Everyone has their preferences for the type of fishing they enjoy, and your choices of where to fish can and should reflect your preferences. Fishing the back lakes for redfish in shallow water versus wading open areas of the bay in the waist to chest-deep water for trout are examples of what I'm talking about.
And if you're getting started, then you'll be learning your preferences, which is great also. The Texas Gulf Coast has hundreds of areas to fish in in all different ways. Part of the fun is figuring out what you like the best and where best to enjoy it.
Here is where I'll draw on the wisdom of fishing guides and make a common-sense appeal. Open a Texas Saltwater Fishing magazine and turn to the classified section to the Fishing Guide ads. What will you find – Bob Smith, fishing guide for the Texas Coast? Nope. You'll find Bob Smith, a fishing guide for a certain part of the coast. What Bob does and what I advise you to do is focus your efforts on a certain area or areas.
I say this for a couple of reasons. There are so many different considerations, so many factors, and what Bob Smith will tell you is that he learns something new every day in his section of the coast. The different seasons, weather patterns, bait and fish migrations, and a slew of other factors make his section a dynamic and ever-changing environment. He does his best to make sense of these patterns so he can put his clients on fish – in his section of the coast.
And my advice to you and what I do is focus my efforts and try to learn an area. It also makes sense because of the time we have to fish. If you're like me you have a job, family, and other activities that compete for your time. I can't fish as often as I'd like and want to give myself the best chances for success. Focusing on an area makes sense.
I'd be lying if I didn't tell you that part of what I enjoy about saltwater fishing is the exploration of the vast resource we have in Texas. I love seeing new places and fishing in new areas. I guess what I'm saying above about focus is that I believe that gives you the best chance for success.
Where to fish is different for everyone, and depends on a number of things. My best advice is to think like a fishing guide and pick a few areas that are easy to get to and focus on those areas. To help you pick those areas, I recommend picking up one of Ray Crawford's books. They are a valuable resource for saltwater fishermen in Texas who want to know where to fish.
Lastly, if you're wondering where I like to fish?...I'll be happy to tell you. Jones Lake is my favorite, especially during the Fall, Winter, and Spring. A number of years ago my buddy Jeremy and I bought kayaks at Fishing Tackle Unlimited around Christmas. Our maiden voyage was to Jones, and it was a cool, breezy, January day.
And I still find it hard to believe but he and I caught a bunch of hard fighting, keeper redfish along the North shoreline. I think God was looking down on us, cause we didn't know that much about where to go in our new yaks. But I had heard from someone that Jones would be a good place to go. Christmas Bay is another place I go when it's a bit warmer, and I love to fish the surf in the summer when the conditions are right.
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