Road Trip: Weekend In Galveston

minor setback
 My brother goes to college at Texas A&M Galveston and this past weekend the fishing club held their annual slam tournament. I had never fished in Texas before but I sent Collin to do some prefishing while I prefished on the internet. I got there Friday afternoon after car starting trouble and a fender bender. Turns out He hadn't done any prefishing so we immediately hit the water to check out a spot I had seen online. Collin figured the trout would be the hardest fish to find followed by flounder then the redfish. So we headed out to the first spot was in west bay near the Galveston island state park jut to get a feel for what was going on. I quickly caught a rat red in sight of the launch. I was relieved to get that first fish and that made me forget all the trouble of getting there. The wind was horrible but we hid behind the banks and in the bayous to minimize the effects of the wind and find cleaner water. Through the rest of the evening we fished around some fishy looking areas with minimal success. We both landed a few trout with only one 16 inch keeper between the two of us. We weren't deterred we headed back to the room to make a better plan for Saturday morning which was forecast for 20mph winds.

Saturday morning the weather man wasn't lying the wind was steady 20mph out of the NE when we woke up. This led us to head back and fish back on the north side of the bay near Louis bait camp. This area reminded me of the Louisiana marsh overall but much shallower. The water was pretty dirty so sight fishing was not an option but there were still some visual signs to follow. About ten minutes in we found a small pond where shrimp were popping and finger mullet were being chased. I had a quick blowup and seconds later Collin hooked up on topwater with a lower slot red. Just as I looked over to see him land his fish a red swung and missed at my topwater. I quickly followed the missed strike with a H&H cocahoe which it couldn't refuse. Few minutes later we were both on the board with a couple of lower slot reds. Fishing the rest of the morning we had  minimal results.
Crazy face Collin

 The wind was howling and the water looked like the Mississippi river. I caught 3 more rat reds and Collin caught 3 undersized trout. We gave up on this area around 11:30 to get some lunch and regroup. After the break we decided to go back to where we spent the previous evening and use what we learned the day before. We  headed out to the geotubes on the way out I hooked a throwback trout. Once we made it out to the tubes Collin found a mixed bag at a break in the geotubes. He caught a Gafftop, Hardhead then his cork plunged again and it was a keeper trout. meanwhile I was fishing the same lure not catching anything. I did hook up something large that popped me off and killed the bite we were on. Right about that time the wind picked up and we were pushed back to find a wind break. As we moved back in Collin hooked up again this time it was an upper slot red (26 inches) a solid upgrade from the red we had caught earlier. It was super windy and hiding behind the marsh wasn't really working. I decided to switch to topwater and hope to land a big Texas speckled trout that I wanted to catch on this trip. I had a few light hits but the fish really weren't striking it with any authority. I switched over to a mirrodine and on the first cast I hooked up the fish felt solid and I immediately started to free my net because this could be my new PB speckled trout. I waited for the trout to rise and shake its head on the surface but it wasn't coming to the surface. As I got it closer I was able to see it was a smaller redfish I got all excited for nothing. I quickly unhooked and released the 20inch red. That was the last fish of the day as the sun was setting and we got back to the launch to pack up in the dark.

Day 3
We decided to go to an entirely new area the winds had turned the areas we fished into chocolate milk. So we searched out some more protected waters hoping to just be able to get the jig on the bottom. We decided to head to the marshy areas near San Luis pass. Sunday morning we were at the spot by 6:30 and looks like all the boaters were looking for protection from the  wind  because the parking lot was full of trailers. The wind was a steady 25 so we pointed straight for the marsh and pedaled hard to get there. Once there we were greeted surprisingly with clean water. I still needed to catch a speckled trout this was the best time so I pulled out my topwater and started plugging away. Action was slow but I was confident I could catch one keeper on top we found a drain with lots of bait. My suspicions were confirmed when I received one of the lightest topwater strikes ever. After a few quick reels the fish was there and I was able to finesse it into the net it was a solid 18inch trout. I threw it in the bag and put away the topwater rod 30 minutes in and the plan was ahead of schedule. Now we both needed to find a flounder my down fall in slam tournaments. We had plenty of time and I was confident it would happen. We worked deeper into the marsh I was half fishing for a redfish upgrade. The rat reds were everywhere they fooled me every time I set the hook I thought I had my flounder. After about six rat reds Collin had moved onto a flat adjacent to the deep water bayou we were moving through. He had a flounder shake off as he got it to the surface then he had something break him off. I moved to that same bank further down since it seemed there were multiple flounder there. The wind was blowing straight into my face I worked into the wind to keep the bow out of my line. I fished much slower than I like to but it was necessary to work slowly to feel a light flounder bite. Collin missed four flounders while I was looking for my first flounder he was getting bites but couldn't get a good hook set. I finally got a good tap and set the hook I could feel a different fight and knew this was the flounder I needed. I got it in the net and realized that in Texas has a 15inch minimum. I got it on the board and it was close the tail made 15 giving me the slam. I spent the rest of the day trying to upgrade my flounder I caught many 13 and 14 inchers but no more keepers Collin had plenty hits but was never able to get one in the boat. We made it to the weigh in with plenty of time to spare and did a little bank fishing hoping to get lucky. We weighed in our fish in the individual categories Collin weighed his big red 6.7 pounds and my big trout was 1.84 pounds they both ended up winning their category. We each got a nice gift bag from Academy now I have to find out if these Texas lures catch fish in Louisiana.

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