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Good Fishing at Rigolet's East End Continues

I have been posting a string of reports on my trips to The Rigolets (south of Slidell, between Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Borgne). For all of you following my reports, I said I was going to hit it again last Saturday (September 14). My next door neighbor/best friend/fishing buddy was tagging along for this trip also. The day was good, but we had some major aggravations throughout the day. Last time I went, I managed to catch a crab out of the water for bait. I caught a redfish and sail cat off of it, so I made a mental note to bring the big crab trap I have next trip. We launched the boat at 7 am and headed straight for a honey hole in East Pass, only to find hard heads and croaker. We cut the trash fish up and used them for bait in the trap. I dropped the trap right over the edge of the boat to try to catch some crabs while we fished. After not catching anything worthwhile, we pulled up the trap (it surprisingly had 4 crabs in it) and went to the bridge. We dropped the trap off along the way. We fished the bridge on bottom with dead and alive shrimp and cracked crab. We were using the rig that I have attached a diagram of, but I will explain why I use it at the bottom of the report. I had one rod set up with shrimp, and a different rod with only crab on it. I caught the big redfish in the picture off of the crab, along with a sail cat. Basically, trash fish were the only things biting shrimp that day. We caught the rest of the sail cats on cut croaker and crab. We left our spot at the bridge to go check the crab trap, only to find that some thieving coonass bastards stole it. Well, we started heading back to the bridge when my boat motor started acting up. Once pushed above 3000 RPMs, it sounded like it would shift into neutral and rev WAY up, and would not get any power to the prop. This would only happen when it was pushed past 3000 though (any suggestions on what could be wrong?) We finally made it back to the bridge but went to a different spot. My neighbor hooked on a huge fish, but it broke his line before we could tell what it was. The same thing happened to me about 10 minutes after that. Aggravated and pissed off, I pulled out my Big Game rod. (it is spooled with fresh 85 pound braid, along with the rig in the picture) I managed to hook on a fish that almost ripped the rod out of my hands. It started swimming hard, and never let up, even though I set my drag to almost max. Just before the fish was about to pull me out of the boat, it snapped my line. After cursing my rod, my boat, the bait, the water, and everything in it, I decided to pack up and call it a day, thus putting an early end to our trip. (It was also a good idea to head in due to the motor issue).

On a side note, this might be helpful to anyone that hates dealing with catfish because of the barbs and fins; after being stuck deep in the hand by a tiny hard head, I threw the fish down in the boat, told it what thought of it, and hit it (excessively) hard with my marsh anchor on the head. Seeing the fish immediately go limp, I had an idea. I had a hammer in the tool box on my boat, and thought it would serve a better purpose as an aid in hook removal. So anytime a catfish was brought into the boat, we would use the hammer to 'calm the fish down', thus giving the name 'The Attitude Adjuster' to the hammer. Simply apply it to the top center of the catfish's head, and presto! No more pricks from a squirmy catfish. After the hook is removed, throw it back overboard. As an added bonus, if more people started doing this, the hard head population could start to decline... :)

Anyways, the rig shown is useful to fishing the Rigolets. I use a 4 ounce drop weight when I'm at the bridge, to hold the line down in the fast current. I use a 3 everywhere else. The leader material is 80-100 lb test mono line. I use crimps instead of tying knots. It is easier and just seems to work better. Using the heavier test mono line prevents the hooks from wrapping around the main line. The reason that I put 18 inches between the first hook and sinker is because trash fish are usually the only thing I catch if I have the bait sitting on bottom. But raising the bait up puts in range of target fish. However, all of this is just my preference; I use this rig because it works for me.

Good luck out on the water! Stay safe and bring home the big one. Feel free to ask me any questions. (I apologize again for the long report, I sometimes get on a rant when I talk about fishing!)
Speck fishing
I appreciate the reports. Sailcats are fine eating. If u want to get into speck fishing head across lake borne and get into the Biloxi Marsh. It should start up anyday now with this cool front.
Did you see who stole your trap? If not, how do you know it was a coonass?
Not sure
I am not sure who stole my trap. I have a feeling it was either some sketchy looking people that were staring me down while I was putting it in the water. or it was a crabber that felt I was cutting in on his 'territory'...
Thought you were gonna say you could hear the 'Wayne Toups' blaring from his skiff......
motor trouble
sounds like you have spun a hub in your prop.