Hello and welcome!
My name is Devin Denman, and I love inshore fishing in Louisiana because it's an amazing place to get away and catch some fish.
Her marsh is vast, and it's possible to fish there without seeing another soul all day. There's plenty to catch, too.
Simply put, a fishing trip in Louisiana has great potential to be the experience of a lifetime and create memories that last forever.
Because of this, I feel everyone should experience the great fishing here, and my way of making that happen is sharing my fishing knowledge on this website.
There's a lot to share because I've been inshore fishing for a long time and have learned a lot along the way. It has been somewhat of a journey from beginner to expert angler.
What you need to know to catch fish 100% on your own is found right here on Louisiana Fishing Blog:
I also share good fishing tips in my newsletter:
Who is Devin Denman?
If you'd like to get acquainted then I'm more than happy to share my story, because I wasn't always a professional angler.
I guess the best place to start is when I was just a kid, on a fishing trip with my father and brother.
Growing Up Fishing
Almost all of us have been fishing during our childhood, but I'm not kidding when I tell you that we fished a lot.
My dad loved taking me and my brother fishing, and we loved going.
Bad weather. Good weather. It didn't matter. If we had time off we went fishing!
We created a lot of good memories and the passion for inshore fishing was forever lit in my heart.
Going To Iraq...
However, those fishing trips eventually came to an end when I joined the Marine Corps.
I turned 18 in boot camp and by the time I turned 21 I was on my second deployment.
Then I left the Marines to pursue a better life protecting people from harm in dangerous parts of the world.
You get to meet a lot of cool people in this line of work!
As you can imagine, I wasn't do much fishing, but would be reminded of home from time to time.
Whenever I saw places like the Euphrates River or Lake Tar Tar I'd remember the warm memories of fishing trips deep inside the marsh.
...Then Coming Back
So you know what happened! When I came home, it was time to go fishing.
I fished so much that you could check the Breton Sound Marina dock cam (no longer in service) and find me cleaning a pile of fish.
Tactical Training And...Fishing?!
A lot of what I had learned overseas turned out to be really useful for fishing! Running on night vision goggles is one example.
Interpreting satellite imagery is another.
Just as I used GIS products to negotiate dangerous streets in Iraq, I'd use Google Earth to locate fishing spots, identify navigational hazards and create custom routes to follow on my GPS.
I've used Google Earth for years in the Middle East (before it was known as "Google Earth") and was the first inshore angler to post tutorials on its use for inshore fishing.
Keeping an open mind, trying new fishing spots, learning new techniques, and casting different tackle made me a better angler.
Then I Became A Fishing Guide
Eventually, I was confident enough to begin guiding clients in the marsh. This was great because I wanted to stay home in Louisiana.
Honestly, I learned more guiding than ever before, the chief reason being catching fish on demand is a lot harder than having fun with your buddies and no expectations.
But I became pretty good, offering a "no fish, no pay" guarantee. With time, this grew to an admirable twenty fish guarantee.
The Clear Realization About Being A Fishing Guide
I really enjoyed guiding because it did for others what fishing with my dad did for me: create awesome memories that last a lifetime.
Those fishing trips, and the lessons learned they taught, were chronicled here in Louisiana Fishing Blog.
Readers told me how much they learned from those fishing reports and articles, causing me to realize that Louisiana Fishing Blog was a way to empower people to go on awesome fishing trips.
With LAFB it was possible to help thousands more people have fun catching fish than I could ever do guiding!
So I kept writing, eventually going full-time with it in 2015.
But my inshore fishing journey was just getting started.
The Benefit Of Fishing Tournaments
In 2016 I signed up to compete in the Louisiana Saltwater Series, a redfish tournament trail hosting events across the coast of Louisiana, from Slidell, south to Venice and west all the way to Lake Calcasieu.
This was a huge eye opener for me, because I was only accustomed to fishing the salty Biloxi Marsh, and now had to find redfish in all kinds of different water.
Just like guiding, this pushed my skills and knowledge to the max, and I am proud to say that we landed in the money and did well for our first year.
It was a great year and I learned a lot, so much that I felt compelled to write about it in this blog post.
But tournament fishing took me away from Louisiana Fishing Blog and what I really liked to do: help people catch fish 100% on their own.
So, I gave it up and began writing more for LAFB and tagging fish for TAG Louisiana.
I tagged well over 1,000 fish and learned even more about their movements, confirming some theories and fielding more questions.
The Tipping Point
With time I learned that, for the most part, anyone can reel in a fish.
Sure it's fun, but it's not challenging.
I feel that the "reel" challenge (see what I did there?) is found in locating fish.
It's a very satisfying feeling and finding fish from scratch makes up the majority of the information you'll find here.
And many people have benefited from reading the articles here, telling me about how much it helped their fishing trips.
This one particular time someone told me to check out Louisiana Fishing Blog. Boy that was probably the best tip I have ever gotten.
I have gained so much knowledge, took notes, got advice on the right rods and reels, tackle, how to find fish, etc.
The evidence was there: fishing knowledge is number one when it comes to helping someone catch fish.
Not a lure. Not a map. Not a boat. Not any tackle or equipment.
Those are only tools; tools that are useless without a knowledgeable angler operating them.
The Solution That Changed The Way We Learn How To Fish
It was then I decided to put everything in one spot, complete with instructional video and – of course – the really good fishing knowledge that had been kept from the public (sorry, it's just too good).
This became what is now known as Inshore Fishing 101.
Don't let the name fool you! It's not "basic" at all, but rather the foundational inshore fishing knowledge that all other fishing disciplines build upon.
Honestly, most fishing guides don't know everything inside Inshore Fishing 101.
I'm not taking away from their expertise, but pointing out that Inshore Fishing 101 is that comprehensive.
Inshore Fishing 101 is the best course EVER! I loved that I could sit for an hour learning, and it resumed where I left off.
On top of all this, I added instructor support to the course. This allows me to address any gaps in the course lessons and answer questions specific to the individual student.
Inshore Fishing 101 was wildly successful, spurring others to outright copy it – but isn't imitation the sincerest form of flattery? :)
It didn't stop with Inshore Fishing 101, either.
Follow on courses like Inshore Fishing 201 and Sight Fishing Mastery School were created.
Taking It One Step Further
However, there was a trend growing in the comments section. People would ask about hypothetical scenarios, "What about <insert specific condition>? How do I catch fish then?"
Justin's question below is a great example:
Such a question is pretty broad (and difficult to answer) because it doesn't include all the conditions (and circumstances) for this hypothetical fishing problem.
Staying in one spot for longer than usual could be a good idea if:
- you caught fish there before
- you saw bait balls on sonar
- you have nowhere else to go
Or, it could be time to leave a spot because:
- the tide went slack
- you're only catching trash fish
- the sun came out
Does this make sense?
The best method to address these questions was to record my fishing trips for people to watch.
After all, if I'm that good, would I need to hide where I am fishing? No, because the process I use doesn't involve fishing exact spots but instead fishing the conditions and reacting to what happens on the water.
These are called "fishing trip reviews" and include three parts:
- Planning Video
- The Fishing Trip
- Post Trip Review
The planning video goes over all past, current and predicted conditions for the day and how I would fish them.
I'll pick out fishing spots (especially if the area is new) and create routes to get to them – and back to the dock – safely.
It's very important to note the only resources being used for fishing trip planning are publicly available.
I do not, under any circumstance, have anyone giving me intel on fish location, local conditions, or any kind of information you cannot get within the public domain.
This is taken seriously because it is important that I demonstrate my fishing knowledge and techniques in my courses really do work.
And you'll see exactly that in the "fishing trip" section.
Each fishing spot is recorded as its own video, so you can see exactly how to fish it and apply what I am doing on your own fishing trips.
Lastly, the post trip review recaps the day, showing everywhere I went using Google Earth to display tracks from the boat's GPS, and what happened at each spot.
It's a great learning tool because you see exactly how I plan for conditions and patterns so that you may apply that formula to your own fishing trips.
Remembering Why We Go Fishing In The First Place
Of course, I am still "fun fishing" today. :)
Hey, if you can't do that, then what's the point?
Sometimes I go by myself to practice a new technique without distraction.
Sometimes I go with friends and family to make the same kind of memories where it all began: decades ago in a little flatboat.
Remember the picture of me and Ben earlier? Here we are now as grown men and – you know it – a limit of redfish.
So, that's my story. That's how I grew as an inshore angler and how Louisiana Fishing Blog came to be.
Over To You
My #1 goal is to help you catch fish.
Why? Because it's a key ingredient to a great day on the water. It's something to pass on to your kids.
It's good for the economy. It puts a smile on any face.
Maybe you'll grow to the point you become a strong ally in conservation, helping us wisely rebuild our coast and preserve our excellent fishing for generations to come.
However, I can only show you the door, it's up to you to open it.
A great first step is to stay in touch.
- Captain Devin