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"Surf Opening Up"

By Capt. Kris "Double K" Kelley

Sponsored by: American Rodsmiths

On last weeks report I called for wind stability coinciding with explosive fishing and a prediction for the surf near term. When I saw the pattern of high winds break last Sunday, I could feel the change in the air and it's right on. I predicted that the surf action was going to be awesome this year but didn't realize it would be in play so quickly. From Port O to Port A, surf reports are coming in very favorable with serious action on Trout in the 18 to 22" class. The last couple of days have had some slick calm conditions which opened things up quickly. It has hampered some wind driven fish down south but that's a small price to pay considering wall to wall tide runners and is requiring a tactical change and immediate location change.

In the bays, Trout are starting to make small moves above the quarter mile demarcation line above the south shoreline I've spoken about in recent reports. This latest push of fresh water isn't that noticeable because we've been so fresh for so long. Salinity readings out of Charlies Bait Camp have been 1 ppb the last couple of days with salinity readings at 25 ppb in Port O and declining. As we lose freshwater and gain more salinity into SAB, the fish will continue to expand above the demarcation line. I'm guessing by August, we should have broad ranging Trout concentrations withstanding any more reinforcing deluges. This will bring into play SAB shell above the Intercoastal and west to the Aransas Refuge shoreline.

Copano Bay east to St. Charles has struggled with off color water due to freshwater runoff. In discussing this with Capt. Mike Patterson he mentioned "our fish just won't eat in that water". This is just the opposite in our area as off color water promotes a feeding frenzy. This has pushed the fishing pressure out of Rockport south. Add a couple of new terms necessary for getting a grip on fishing this area currently. They are stabilized and destabilized freshwater. When I say stabilized off color water, I mean off color water that is not wind whipped and is penetrable by bait or lure. This is contrary to destabilized off color water that would be wind whipped chocolate milk which is what you have with 15 knots and gusty. This directly ties my comments about wind velocity and predictable fishing. Freshwater is offcolor compared to saltwater because of the mud and other sediments that flow down the river with it. The particles suspend allowing somewhat of a settling affect in reduced winds and fishing success runs parallel. However, these particles are "stirred" easily with wind driven tides and gusting conditions typically coinciding with velocities historically over 15 knots. With a classic summer time pattern of moderate winds early combined with off color water, the forecast for "catching" couldn't be much better. It has a time frame however, and in this area I would be focusing the greatest effort prior to 1:00pm. This is about the time winds will start to build and begin destabilizing our water. The winds set over night, water stabilizes, winds moderate morning through mid-day and then build again.

Good luck, and take care out there.


Capt. Kris "Double K" Kelley
Coastal Waterfowl & Fishing Guide Services
e-mail: [email protected]
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