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#10964882 - 07/08/15 09:10 PM Newbie Needs Help: East Matagorda Bay
killerdad Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 07/05/15
Posts: 5
Going to be taking son and grandson down to Marshal, Tx first of August for a long weekend. Have house rented a mile out of town on the intercoastal waterway and beach front. Gonna put in and be fishing in East Matagorda Bay. The house has some lights on the waterway to attract trout at night. Other than that, I don't have a clue what to expect. Never have boat fished the bay, only caught trout once ten years ago at night. Any tips, tackle advice, locations, bait preference....dudes, I am all ears and would appreciate a crash course. I have a simple Bass Tracker boat that will see saltwater for the first time. I want it to be a good experience for the grandson. I was told to get some Berkley Gulp glow and some DOA glow shrimp for catching trout by the light, but really have no good ideas about how to fish the bay. I freshwater catfish mostly, so I am used to anchoring, chumming, and bottom fishing....I figure its a whole new game in a bay in 4 feet of saltwater, with a tide, and who knows what the things want to eat. Any and all advice appreciated and thanks for your help ahead of time.

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#10965352 - 07/09/15 07:40 AM Re: Newbie Needs Help: East Matagorda Bay [Re: killerdad]
Jim Ford Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 01/28/12
Posts: 1202
Loc: Texas
The salt water will trash the wiring and the trailer on your Bass Tracker. The same techniques you described for catfish will catch you fish in the bay. Do it near a channel when the tide is moving. Tidal movement is a major component of success. The same tackle you use for cats will work, just rinse it thoroughly in fresh water after each use. Reefs, channels, any kind of structure will be likely to hold fish. The bait will lead you to the fish. If the bait is calm you aren't in the right place. If it's nervous, or fleeing, you're in the right place.
Good Luck!

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#10967221 - 07/09/15 08:09 PM Re: Newbie Needs Help: East Matagorda Bay [Re: killerdad]
killerdad Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 07/05/15
Posts: 5
Thanks for the tip on the wiring on the trailer and lights. Didn't think of that. Read all about flushing the motor and washing down the gear after use, but hadn't thought about the trailer. If I am still fishing like you suggest, what kind of bait on what size hook with what type of leader would you suggest? Oh, and thanks for responding...I saw several have viewed this post but was getting worried this was not a great place to get advice.

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#10967857 - 07/10/15 08:21 AM Re: Newbie Needs Help: East Matagorda Bay [Re: killerdad]
Jim Ford Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 01/28/12
Posts: 1202
Loc: Texas
I'm not the best person to ask about bait; all I throw is flies. If your anglers are good to go with casting, the Gulp and DOA shrimp, as well as various swimbaits, spinnerbaits, spoons, and crankbaits should all produce. Topwaters are always fun. Try the plastics under a popping cork if they aren't too keen on "chunk and wind", or over oysters. I'd run jigheads anywhere from 1/16 to 1/4 ounce, depending on depth and water flow.

As far as natural bait, it's hard to beat shrimp, either live or fresh dead. Carolina rigs, bottom rigs, popping corks, free shrimping; all will produce at times. I don't know what the guys who fish shrimp a lot use, but I'd lean toward circle hooks myself; that's what I use on the rare occasions I soak fresh dead with the bride. I don't recall offhand what size I use, but I'd guess around 1 to 2/0 would work. But the guys who fish that way a lot can steer you better than I can on that.

As far as leaders, just use some 15 - 20 lb. fluorocarbon if you need a leader. I use 10 lb. braid on the spinning reels, and a length of 15 - 17 lb. fluorocarbon makes it easier to tie on tackle, and doesn't foul in the hooks or oysters as readily as braid. I use 12 - 15 lb. monofilament on the levelwinds, and may or may not add a short length of fluorocarbon. If you use monofilament line, leaders are optional. You certainly don't need wire for specks, reds, or black drum.

Hope this helps...... Again, I'm mostly a fluff chucker, so you might want to see what some others recommend.

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#11021055 - 08/04/15 11:46 PM Re: Newbie Needs Help: East Matagorda Bay [Re: Jim Ford]
killerdad Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 07/05/15
Posts: 5
Jim for the advice. No one else really replied. You answered a lot of questions for me. I just got some 30# braid that I am going to for most of my rods. I'll leader with some fluorocarbon like you said. I have the Gulp, DOA shrimp, Jigs, circle hooks, and popping corks...so I have enough to not have many excuses! Also spent some time building a crab trap I designed so I can drop it off and then retrieve after fishing...we'll see how it works. thanks again.

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#11021435 - 08/05/15 08:45 AM Re: Newbie Needs Help: East Matagorda Bay [Re: killerdad]
fastpitch Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/03/07
Posts: 500
Loc: Trinity Bay
I would avoid saltwater at all costs with your Bass Tracker. Unless your trailer is galvanized or aluminum, it will be a rusty piece of junk in 6 months. As far as fishing the lights, work the edges of the light with soft plastics, glow works well, mirrodines, or rattletraps. With kids, live shrimp might be best, dead bait for trout usually is not a good idea.
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#11021475 - 08/05/15 09:00 AM Re: Newbie Needs Help: East Matagorda Bay [Re: killerdad]
TroutSupport.com Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 08/10/10
Posts: 1299
Loc: Entire Gulf and Atlantic Coast...
Dead bait... not the best for trout but will catch a redfish if it's around.

Be careful running east in low tides.. lots of shallow reefs in LiveOak, the East end, Chinquapin, and even in the middle. Just take your time and use a map, you'll be ok.

If I was taking kids I'd certainly use live shrimp and popping cork. it'll catch everything from trout, reds, and any thing else that will pull their line and that's all that matters.
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