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Matagorda "February Heavyweights" Surf Report #13902303 02/25/21 11:04 PM
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TPOTTS Offline OP
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One thing I think we can all agree on is that us Texans have it pretty good here in the Lone Star state. Fairly low cost of living, mild winters, the best dang BBQ on planet earth and of course that “little ol’ band from Texas”. One thing that can’t be overlooked is just how incredible our fishery is here. With hundreds of miles of driveable coastline, the angling opportunities are endless. Whether you are on a mission for a trophy trout in Baffin, chasing tarpon off the rocks on Padre Island or battling redfish of epic proportions in Matagorda, we have it all. Texas truly is a sportsman’s paradise.

Besides the rare arctic blast that we just endured, February fishing was outstanding. Many days we experienced 70 degree weather, optimal water temperature and just overall great conditions which resulted in many good fish being landed. Redfish and black drum ran the show as they usually do in the winter months. If you are on the hunt for a true trophy redfish then February is the prime time to be out there. It is not uncommon to land 10 or more fish in the 45”-50” range in a day. While the fish won’t be there in really strong numbers as they are in other months, the size and quality of the ones you will catch make up for it. Using a mix of blue crab, mullet and whiting proved to be effective for those winter surf zone heavyweights. Prior to the winter storm, the sandbar sharks made their appearance and I would go 1 for 2 on them landing one big male at 7’5 and having another one come unbuttoned as I went to leader it over the first bar. While I was hoping to get a shot at a couple more of them before the months end, the significant drop in water temperature from the storm put a halt to that. My favorite sandbar baits are giant whole whiting and chunks of sheepshead. Black drum and cownose rays are also a great option and readily available. Once the water temp pushes back into the low and mid 60’s, they should be back within range in pretty good numbers. Pompano even made an appearance on one of the days when the water cleared up and I was able to pick off a few of them using pink Fishbites on my triple drop bait leaders. While not a rare catch by any means, I just don’t see them too often on that stretch of beach. One thing I have found myself doing more and more of lately is throwing bigger lures at bullreds as opposed to just slinging bait out there. Savage gear mullet pattern swim baits, Storm swim baits and large plugs were excellent all month long. It can be tiring making cast after cast while getting pummeled by waves but when you hook up to a brute of a redfish it makes it all worth it!

While I only saw a handful of fish casualties on my first outing post winter storm, the pictures I have seen from down south really hit hard. Unfortunately, Mother Nature can be cruel sometimes and that is just the harsh reality of those extreme cold snaps like that. In time things will rebound though, no doubt about it. With March knocking on our door, the blacktips will hopefully make their arrival as the water temperature rises and the jacks and large bull sharks will likely be right behind them. That’s when the fun REALLY starts, see y’all out there!

-TPOTTS

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Re: Matagorda "February Heavyweights" Surf Report [Re: TPOTTS] #13902852 02/26/21 11:15 AM
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I dearly miss fishing that beach flehan


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Re: Matagorda "February Heavyweights" Surf Report [Re: TPOTTS] #13903162 02/26/21 03:30 PM
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@TPOTTS -- I bought a medium weight spinning combo like they use to throw plugs at stripers on the east coast. 9' medium rod, Daiwa Saltist 5000. I bought a few larger plugs/swim baits similar to what they use as well (2oz - 4oz). I hadn't had many opportunities to try it out (currently live in Austin), but I believe that this is a way of fishing that we don't think of much in Texas. I'd be interested to hear about plugging for bull reds in the surf, I bet you'd do pretty well with a 3oz gold Kastmaster.

Re: Matagorda "February Heavyweights" Surf Report [Re: atx_ben] #13904119 02/27/21 04:19 AM
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Originally Posted by atx_ben
@TPOTTS -- I bought a medium weight spinning combo like they use to throw plugs at stripers on the east coast. 9' medium rod, Daiwa Saltist 5000. I bought a few larger plugs/swim baits similar to what they use as well (2oz - 4oz). I hadn't had many opportunities to try it out (currently live in Austin), but I believe that this is a way of fishing that we don't think of much in Texas. I'd be interested to hear about plugging for bull reds in the surf, I bet you'd do pretty well with a 3oz gold Kastmaster.



It is definitely something that has grown on me more and more. Just a different way to chase after them and its really a lot of fun! You are blind casting the whole time so it does get tiring. On the days when you are getting double and triple hook ups on bait is best because you know they are out there schooled up. That setup you have would be killer for that kind of fishing. What I did was dig into my jack fish box and thought surely these will work for big redfish and they have been. The swim baits, big gator spoons, Kastmaster spoons like you mentioned and even big top water tuna poppers worked well when it was warmer out.

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Re: Matagorda "February Heavyweights" Surf Report [Re: TPOTTS] #13905521 02/28/21 06:16 PM
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That's funny -- I was blindly buying stuff off of Cabeleas and ended up with a tuna popper. I remember thinking "well that was a waste of money", but it's definitely drawn a strike or two.

The other use case for me is when it's gin clear in the surf, I want to cast big plugs off the third bar for kings. Haven't had a chance to do that, I was in South Padre and was swimming live croaker off of the third bar and a big king spooled my trout rod, and I've seen them caught pretty close to the beach on boats even in Galveston. I bet you could get to them with a big, flashy plug and a 100 yd cast.

Re: Matagorda "February Heavyweights" Surf Report [Re: TPOTTS] #13906064 03/01/21 01:50 AM
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coolphotos Great post and some "MONSTER FISH" ! Super job! bow_down


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Re: Matagorda "February Heavyweights" Surf Report [Re: TPOTTS] #13908638 03/03/21 01:16 AM
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We will be on the beach for the first time since October last year. Ready for this year on the sand down on 'Gorda


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