Louisiana Chandeleur mother ship trip, Kayak fishing

9.26.2011

Two months ago John and I drove 10 hours to do a trip in Louisiana only to have the named storm Don destroy our plans. Since the trip was already paid for it got rescheduled for September.

Due to other obligations John along with a few others just could not make it this trip and sold his spot to a couple other Tampa fisherman. The lucky few that go the spots were Jose, Chuck and Chris. These are all good Kayak fisherman that wanted to fish the Louisiana area for a change of pace.

The logistics of carrying all the kayaks was a bit of hassle but thankfully we found a friend(Peter) that let us used a Kayak trailer. This worked out nicely as we how have room on the bed of the truck fit all our gear for the long haul.

Chris was all up for the drive as we rondevu at his house at 9pm. We had to be there the next morning to load up and, yes we were driving straight through and yes, I’m too old to do that. As we packed I wonder how we would kill the time on the drive up. Four guys with all the gear and a 10 hour drive. It don’t sound like much fun but some how we got through it. Talks of fishing, more fishing, the meaning life, and religion debate passed the time. Nine and half hours later we were driving into Biloxi, MS to meet up with the mother ship boat.

With not much traffic on a Wednesday night, we were there quite early. Breakfast at the good old Waffle house, stops at Wally world and a visit the local Winn Dixie for the usual forgotten gear helped to fill some otherwise empty time slot.

We loaded the gear and our Kayak onto the Double Trouble trawler mother ship. With the help of the mates this didn’t take long at all. It gave us time to get our L.A. fishing gear and time to take a few photos of the trip. By 11:30am we were off on the 4.5 hour trip to fish the chain of island called Chandeleur islands.

What to do, what to do now on the journey out. All the gear was all ready and everyone was eager to wet the line and test some lures out. This day the fishing crew was made up of 11 fisherman. 6 in Kayaks the rest, including me was using the skiff to fish out of. Use four was from Florida the rest were from Louisiana and the surrounding area. Indeed, we took home the award for driving the the furthest.

All the guys on the boat were indeed pretty cool and the conversation passed swiftly. If you wanted to sleep you could. The interior of the boat was air conditioned and slept 12 fisherman plus the crew surprisingly comfortably. With two bathroom and a shower, full kitchen, hot and cold water, fridge it had the luxury or a nice cozy town house.

Once we got there the crew unloaded the boats and everyone was off fishing before it got dark. With that being said, the sunset there at 7pm central time zone.The fishing was good. Lots of bait activities and predators busting bait all around us. With only a limited light to fish everyone did quite well with plenty trout and a few redfish.

Dinner that night was prepared by the crew as everyone drank beer and watch the game on satellite TV. Us Florida guys talked of fishing for the bigger red fish in the am but all the other guys spoke of was catching their limit of big trout. By the way, fish limit in LA is 25 trout and 5 red fish per person. Compared to our 4 trout and 1 red fish here in Florida that was quite a jump.

Top water for sure was the ticket for the trout bite

The next morning we started off before sun came up. Our mission was to get on the beach and look for the bigger red fish. Once we got across the bar however, we knew it was not to be. With the big surf rolling in and nasty churned up seas it was not possible to cast out very far or spot the roaming fish school. By lunch time the afternoon storm rolled in and we decided to head in for a lunch break.

After lunch we had a change of plan. This plan brought us out to deeper water to concentrating on filling the fish box and this we did. The boys pack the cooler and brought some nice eating fish back for the fish fry that night. Chris had a nice catch of the day, taking in a 30lb black drum on fly.

The last day of fishing was quite interesting. I awake 2am in the morning to find the boat rocking and rolling while anchor. This was strange since it was suppose to be calm that night. I got up on the back the boat to find two other fisherman awake as well. The kicker was all the kayaks had came loose during the storm and had floated away into the darkness. The crew had been trying to look for it for an hour with a spot light to no avail.

By 3am I was tired and went back to sleep. We decided not to tell anyone since there wasn’t anything anyone could do until the sun comes up anyways. Needless to say the morning was filled with tension as by 9am the kayaks were still missing. The coast guard had been notified and the surround boats had been told about the situation. The crew did a search but with the strong winds and it being over 6 hours later the kayaks could be anywhere.

The kayakers decided to fish out of the skiff so at least they could get some fishing in for the day. After all, sitting on the boat mulling it over would not do anything to find it regardless.

By noon we had heard the good news on the radio. The kayaks had been found by one of the other boats in the area, all in perfect condition. Boy what a relief for everyone involved.

That night the crew cleaned up all the fish and made us jambalaya for dinner to cap off a great two and half day trip.

As the boat takes off we got out side to watch the sun set one more time before left it all to head back to Tampa, Florida.

 

Did I mention you can catch silver trout all night off the back of boat?

 

Trip information:

Double Trouble Chandeleur boat trip

Besides cost of getting there and your tackle,

Our cost for this trip was $525 per person + tip, this included all meals, drinks and snacks for the entire trip. You bring your own alcohol.

$30 for the fishing license.

We slept on the boat all 3 nights so no hotel was needed. For the money I think it’s a fun affordable trip. You get to hang out, watch TV, and be near lots of fish first thing in the morning. Not to mention if you wanted to, you get to bring 25 trout and 5 red fish worth of fish home with you to eat.

Useful Fishing information:

10-20lb test spinning combo, medium light to medium heavy depending on lure choice.
Rod 7 to 7.5′ works great.

Jigs, top water lure works great.

Us Florida boys used DOA lures cals, Yo Zuri top water, Mirror Lure topwater and Mirrodine

Fly rods 8 to 10 weight depending on wind. Almost any fly will work but I prefer heavier flies if you are targeting red fish. Chris killed them on chartreuse clouser.

photo notes:

Since I was actually fishing(not just taking photos) for the most of this trip I used what ever camera was available.

I used a combination of iphone, kodak playsport and dslr photos for the report.

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