Road Trip Fishing: Living up to “Great Expectations”

by Keith Lozott, Contributing Writer

Last month I was in full anticipation of my annual guy’s trip to the Biloxi Marsh where redfish flourish and typically never disappoint.  This year the stars, the moon, the planets, the magnetic poles of the earth and/or anything you can think of must have aligned for the trip.  We were treated with great weather accept for the 4th day of the 5 day trip and it ended up to a memorable day on the water anyway.  I hooked a 4 to 5 foot alligator gar that tail walked next to the boat like a sailfish and at one point we thought he was coming in the skiff with us when it charged us right before he spit the gold spoon.  Martin, the fly casting machine that he is, was going to use my fish grip on this beast if it wouldn’t have spit the lure boat side. Thank God it did!

Beauty from Biloxi | Photo courtesy of Keith Lozott

Let’s get to the redfish action that we were treated with!  I have struggled to describe to my friends who didn’t go or couldn’t go how phenomenal the fishing was. I would venture a guess that 90% to 95% of the reds we caught were all sight casted and for the avid, recreational or novice angler this will put your fishing senses into overdrive.  We would scan the GPS for areas that fit our pattern of where we thought the fish would be and sure enough they were there.  We used the trolling motor and slowly went up creeks peering for reds patrolling the shorelines.

I fished the back of my skiff most of the trip on the polling platform where my line of sight was at the perfect position for locating fish.  Martin fished the pointy end of the skiff where he stood on the cooler/casting deck with his fly rod cocked and loaded.  We were like an oiled machine trading turns casting at cruising fish and we experienced hook up after hook up after hook up.  Quite a few times fish would come within five yards of the boat and I would pitch an Exude Dart or DOA root beer chartreuse paddle tail jig rigged weedless in front of them and they would pounce on the offering without a care in the world.  They very well may have hit a beer cap rigged weedless for all we knew. Martin would drop fly’s right on the head of fish and they would explode on the fly instantly.  So many times, we would break out into laughter how insane the bites were because we were so use to the spooky reds of the Indian River or the Treasure Coast or the numerous other spots we’ve fished in Florida.  I’m not saying we don’t sight fish for reds in Florida, but there is something genetic in the Louisiana redfish that makes them not care that you are nearby.  For example, we hit a few oysters thirty or forty feet from several fish and they didn’t move only to be caught a few minutes later.

Red caught sight fishing | Photo courtesy of Keith Lozott

Amazing, unbelievable, memories and stories that I will tell over and over are cemented in my mind forever.  If I’m never able to go again I will always be able to conjure up one of the numerous memories I have of the Biloxi Marsh.  You owe it to yourself to travel and fish areas you only see on TV. It isn’t expensive if you have a few skiffs amongst friends who are willing and able to share the experience with you.