I got a call from Tyler of Castaway Customs wanting to know if I would like to join him on a little road trip to Delacroix, Louisiana and bring along my Maverick HPX-T. I have always wanted to fish the marshes of Louisiana and have heard that the redfish over there have big appetites, so I jumped on that opportunity and we loaded up at 3am the next morning and started to make the long drive northwest. We had to make a couple stops on the way to scan a few boats for some new SeaDek customers so I got to see some cool little towns in the Panhandle, Alabama, and in Mississippi. Our final stop was in Lafayette, Louisiana which was 3 hours past our destination. By this time our 10 hour drive turned into a 22 hour drive and both of us could barely keep our eyes open so we got a hotel and zonked out so we can make the drive to Delacroix, Louisiana for an afternoon of fishing.
The next morning we start to make the drive through the cities and into the marshes of Delacroix. Both of us have mentioned that we wanted to eat at a little fried chicken joint in New Orleans called Willie Maes Scotch house for lunch, so that was our next stop. I’ve heard of Willie Maes from all of the shows on Food Network and Travel channel, they are known to have the best fried chicken and boy were they right, I highly recommend it whenever you are in or pass through the area. They have by far the best fried chicken that I’ve ever had, and I’ve eaten alot of fried chicken in my lifetime!
After hours of driving through cities and towns, we enter a long two lane road lined with bayous and marsh on each side away from the fast pace city life and arrive to our destination at a little fishing village called Delacroix, La. Coincidently, a friend of mine from home lived in Louisiana back in the day and had a friend that now owns and operates a lodge/boatramp/guide service in Delacroix called Sweetwater Guide Service & Marina, and coincidently, that’s where we planned on launching the Skiff. I was told to talk to Capt. Jack Payne who runs the whole operation with his girlfriend Cindy. I’ll tell you one thing, I’ve never seen true southern hospitality until I met Jack and Cindy. Minutes after meeting each other, it felt like I have lived in their house for years. I felt more at home there than I do at my own home in Cocoa Beach! Unfortunately all the rooms at Sweetwater were booked up with Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries officers that were there for the BP oil leak, but Jack was quick to jump on the phone and call a buddy of his that owns a fish camp next door to let him know that he is sending his buds from FL. over to stay a couple nights. No, there is no oil in the area of Delacroix so don’t let that ruin your plans to visit the area. The strategy of keeping the oil out of the untouched marsh was to open up the dams and letting fresh water flow from the Mississippi River through the marshes and Bayous into the Gulf pushing the oil away from the area.
Once we got on the water, we made long runs into lakes and ponds that were recommended by Capt. Jack Payne and Capt. Greg Dini(who is one of the top Fly Fishing guides in the Delacroix area). The key was to find the cleaner saltier water in order to find the massive amounts of redfish that we came there to catch. Due to lower tides and the fresh water from the Mississippi, large amounts of hydrilla were matted in most of the recommended ponds so we fished the waters close by where it wasn’t so thick. The fishing for me was GREAT, although all of the locals say it was slow. Pretty much all of the redfish that we seen, we caught. They weren’t the biggest of all redfish known to roam those waters but it was just great to catch them in a different environment than what I’m use to at home. Louisiana redfish are not like our Florida redfish, they are not easily spooked and anything that comes across their face, they aggressively attack! I am definitely planning on going back and fishing the Delacroix area again, the weekend anglers from Mississippi and New Orleans that were staying in the same camp showed me true southern hospitality along with Capt. Jack, Cindy, Capt. Fred, and everyone else. I want to thank you all and I will be seeing you guys again in the future. I also want to thank Vince at Skinny Water Culture for providing us with the fresh hats, shirts and masks for the trip. They are having a huge clearance sale to make room for the new line of apparel, so check them out at www.skinnywaterculture.com.