John's Journal...

Gulf Coast Fishing Guide

Inshore Fishing for Speckled Trout

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: Let's face the fact that in the South, we have some of the finest saltwater fishing, both inshore and offshore of any region in the nation. During the spring and summer months, we can fish by day and by night with great success.  I've named some of the top inshore and offshore fishing destinations in our area, all places where I've caught fish before, and you can, too.

Lake Calcasieu, Lake Charles, Louisiana - This lake yields some of the largest numbers and biggest-sized speckled trout of anywhere in the South. Calcasieu's bays, estuaries and extensive marshes produce a tremendous amount of baitfish and shrimp. Calcasieu also homes an abundance of oyster beds, a deep ship channel, rock jetties and a huge opening to the Gulf of Mexico. At this time of the year, you can catch trout at Calcasieu either in the lake or out on the beach on the Gulf Coast. Anglers commonly catch 5- and 6-pound trout there, and each year some will take 7- to 9-pound trout, mainly on soft-plastic lures and live shrimp. You also can triple-down in this part of Louisiana where abundant stocks of redfish and flounder live. 

If you've never fished this destination, you can locate the fish by watching for the birds. Large schools of speckled trout will attack baitfish and force the bait to the surface where seagulls will dive, catch and eat the baitfish. By motoring close to the schools of bait, you can catch the trout under the schools.Click to enlarge

Honorable Mentions for Speckled Trout:

Mobile Bay out of Mobile, Alabama, and Fort Morgan near Gulf Shores, Alabama - On this stretch of Alabama's Gulf Coast lies several man-made artificial reefs. You can locate these reefs at Constructed from oyster shells, these reefs hold numbers of specks on them at this time of year.

Perdido Pass near Orange Beach, Alabama - You'll also find very-productive speckled trout fishing at Perdido Pass.

Apalachicola, Florida - Big schools of speckled trout live both inside and outside Apalachicola Bay.

The Information You Need for the Best Speckled Trout Fishing

*Lake Calcasieu, Lake Charles, LouisianaClick to enlarge
Hackberry Lodge, Hackberry, Louisiana: (888) 762-3391,
Captains Jeff and Mary Poe: (337) 598-3268,
Lake Charles Chamber of Commerce: (337) 433-3632,

*Mobile Bay and Fort Morgan
Captain Gary Davis: (251) 943-6298
AGCCVB: (800) 745-7263 (SAND),

*Perdido Pass
Captain Robert Kritzmire: (850) 458-3473,;
AGCCVB: (800) 745-7263 (SAND),

*Apalachicola, Florida
Breakaway Lodge: (850) 653-9008,


Dixey Bar at the mouth of the Mobile Bay under the guns of Fort Morgan near Gulf Shores, Alabama - One of the most-dependable redfish hot spots in the U.S., the Dixey Bar holds redfish that feed on top of and on either side of it throughout the spring, summer, winter and fall. Often you can catch your limit of redfish in less than an hour. You may have trouble when fishing Dixey Bar of not getting to keep most of the redfish you catch due to their large sizes. Some redfish that live on this sandbar will break lines aClick to enlargend rods. Live shrimp, live croakers, live mullet and/or dead bait all will produce big reds at Dixey Bar.

Honorable Mentions for Redfish:

Venice, Louisiana - The numerous oyster beds, canals and cuts that you find in this region home redfish. Although you may not catch the giant reds like you do at Dixie Bar, you can catch numbers of eating-size reds here.

Chandeleur Islands, off the coasts of Mississippi and Louisiana in the Gulf of Mexico - This chain of barrier islands always home plenty of speckled trout and redfish on the front side and the inside of the island.

Information You Need for the Best Redfish Fishing:

* Dixey Bar at Fort Morgan
Captain Gary Davis: (251) 943-6298

* Venice, Louisiana
Captain Anthony Randazzo: (504) 656-9940

* Chandeleur Islands
Bobby Carter at the Isle of Capri: (228) 436-7893; 436-4753,
Mississippi Department of Tourism: (601) 359-3297,

Tomorrow: Inshore Fishing for Flounder

Check back each day this week for more about "Gulf Coast Fishing Guide"

Day 1: Offshore Fishing for Tarpon
Day 2: Offshore Fishing for Red Snapper
Day 3: Offshore Fishing for Grouper
Day 4: Inshore Fishing for Speckled Trout
Day 5: Inshore Fishing for Flounder


Entry 456, Day 4