First published by Fly Fishing Forecast – October 2017
All summer long I keep telling my clients, “If you think this is good, wait ’till October!” I’m sure y’all have walked outside and already felt the cool, crisp air and light north wind on your face after the passing of a cold front. To many outdoors men, this means it’s time to hit the deer woods, but to me, it means it’s time to hunt the redfish. Also, the redfish seem to swim a little shallower, many times with their backs exposed and their eyes just below the surface of the water. This makes sight fishing for them easy for one, but also super exciting watching them race in the shallow water to eat your fly!
I like to fish the low tides for them. Starting October 21, the low tide will be in the mornings. You can find them hugging the banks of the marshy areas around oysters. You can also find them near the mouth of the duck ponds and near points, slowly swimming/crawling looking for crabs near the banks. The older I get, the worse my eyes are, so, I like to use a shorter leader so can I can see my fly easier. The fish won’t be spooked by your fly line and this also will help your cast to be more accurate. I use floating line exclusively. I like the 9ft, 12 pound tapered leaders that I buy from Nelson Outdoors in Pascagoula. Then I trim about 16-20 inches off of it and tie on a foot of 20lb fluorocarbon. It’s best to feed the redfish what they are looking for. You don’t go to Chick-fil-a looking for hamburgers and the reds aren’t in the shallows looking for fish. They want crabs, so I throw lightly weighted crab patterns in brown or olive colors. Accuracy is key, just put the crab close to the fishes pie hole, give it a strip or two and hang on!
However, trout setting will be rewarded accordingly. The bite is so visual, it will take all your might not to trout set when you see the fish explode on your fly. Enjoy the cool weather and I’ll see ya out there!