Fishing has been tough to beat this month. We are catching a lot of speckled trout in Lake Pontchartrain, so this is a great time to be on the water. The Trestles, Hwy 11, and the Twin Span bridges are all holding fish at the moment. Along with the speckled trout are black drum, redfish, blue catfish, and white trout. Sheepshead are busy with their spawn in deeper waters, so we’re not catching any at the moment. With the fishing so good in Lake Pontchartrain, I haven’t been targeting redfish in the marsh. The Lake Pontchartrain Trestles can be tricky to fish for some. I see a lot of anglers positioning their boats very close to the bridge, strictly targeting the pilings, thus repeatedly snagging the old wood pilings that are on the bottom. Yes, their may be a few fish hugging a piling here and there, but the bulk of the speckled trout are often off the bridge, sometimes up to 200’ away. When arriving in the morning, my boat is always parked a long cast length away from the bridge. I instruct my customers to aim toward the Trestles, letting their baits land 10’ – 15’ off the bridge. When the bait is on the bottom, let it sit for around 15 seconds then slowly drag it, then sit again, and repeat.
This is done to determine where the fish are holding. As soon as we determine the distance, we can save time by targeting that area. As soon as we stop getting bites, the search process starts again, and I’ll usually have one or two customers start casting away from the bridge. More often than not, if the bite is 50’ off the bridge, then stops abruptly, the fish have adjusted their position due to the velocity of the current and we’ll find them much further off the bridge.
There is typically a morning bite and afternoon bite at the bridge. The morning bite is usually done by 9:30/10 AM. If you start fishing the Lake Pontchartrain Trestle at sunrise and go 20 minutes without a bite, move to another section quickly. As far as determining where to start, look for loons, clean water, or any bird activity. When I arrive at the bridge in the morning, I rarely start where I caught the day before. Usually, where we were the day before was noticed by other anglers and they will themselves be there the next morning or send their buddies. Given this common occurrence, the first thing I look for in the morning is a wide-open section of water along the bridge, void of any boats. Live shrimp is always the go-to bait. When more experienced anglers are on board, we can throw artificial baits. I tend to stick to two colors when fishing the bridge. Avocado for cloudy days, and white for sunny days. Currently the water temperature is 77 degrees, so the speckled trout are feeling the strong urge to begin the journey east. As they continue to stage and leave the lake the next couple months, fishing will stay strong. I still have some available dates available in May. If you are on the Northshore or in the New Orleans area, and thinking about booking us for your fishing excursions, contact us today.