VIDEO: How I Caught 300+ Specks at the Long Rocks | Louisiana Fishing Blog
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Fish MRGO Long Rocks

VIDEO: How I Caught 300+ Specks at the Long Rocks

The 2018 spring trout run in Hopedale has been running strong, and this is exactly how I’ve been catching limits and leaving them biting.

I love this time of year! The days are long, nights are short and it’s finally warm again.

Above all, I love that the trout have begun spawning and are schooled in big numbers, and eating up on all the available live bait.

There’s everything from shrimp, to baby croakers, to finger mullet and, of course, pogies.

My Favorite Spring Trout Hot Spot

My favorite spot to fish for speckled trout is the MRGO Long Rocks, accessible from Hopedale.

I love this area because of its diverse structure: riprap with readily accessible deep water, protected from wind on two sides.

It's a straight shot of saltwater from the Gulf, and does a good job of staying clean, since its as deep as 30ft in some places.

So think of it as a huge highway that marine denizens use to get from the "inside" of the marsh to the "outside" to spawn.

MRGO Long Rocks

Nothing New

This spot is nothing new and, that it turns on in May, isn't a secret either.

But what is new is how I've fished the area this past week, bringing in limits of fish, tagging some more, then leaving them biting.

Before I can jump into that, let's go over the "conventional" way of fishing the MRGO Long Rocks in the spring.

Traditional Methods

Typically, boats anchor along the length of the rocks, about a casting distance away, and try their luck by chunking live shrimp under a cork.

Some "tight line" soft plastic lures on a jighead, or use said lures under a cork.

So, for the most part, traditionally fishing the Rocks is all about anchors and popping corks.

While this can work, it isn't the most effective way to put limits of trout in the boat.

How come?

Because the majority of trout aren't feeding on shrimp! They are feeding on finfish like finger mullet and croaker.

There is no doubt in my mind they'd love to eat shrimp.

But since they are feeding on baitfish their focus is aimed at the water immediately next to the rocks, where that bait is holding.

Not in open water where shrimp are flowing.


My Less Traditional Methods

I've taken an approach based on power fishing: using a trolling motor and artificial lures to cover a lot of shoreline.

Here are two combos I've used to catch over 300 trout between four trips.

Jigging Combo

  • Reel: Lew's Speed Spool Pro Mag 7.3:1
  • Line: 14lb Stren Fluorescent Blue Monofilament
  • Rod: Handmade 6'4" Medium Power, Extra-Fast Action (St. Croix AXC64MXF equivalent)
  • Lure: Black Platinum Golden Eye 3/8oz jighead dressed in Ultraviolet Matrix Shad

Jerkbait Combo

  • Reel: Lew's Tournament Pro G 8.3:1
  • Line: 15lb Seaguar Invizx Fluorocarbon
  • Rod: DUCE Echo ECM69
  • Lure: Strike King KVD Jerkbait in Sexy Shad

    Jigheads did most of the damage, but the jerkbait brought out the bigger girls.
Speckled Trout Strike King KVD Jerkbait Sexy Shad

Techniques Used

Watch this video to see how we worked the rocks.

While you do, note these things:

  • No anchor, just trolling motor.
  • I'm always staying with bait. No bait = no fish.
  • I speed up the trolling motor when the bite slows down.
  • I slow down when the bite speeds up.
  • I use a foot-pedal, cable-steered trolling motor (hands free).

It's kind of hard to see in the video, but we are casting to the rocks and working the bait back to the boat. 

When I say "to the rocks", I mean I am literally hitting the rocks with the jighead, swimming it back until it's clear of shallow snags and then begin reeling slowly or jig it back. 

Does this really matter?

Yes!

Remember, trout are feeding on finfish against the rocks, so that is where they are looking.

Yes, you may catch a trout halfway to the boat, but that fish was probably following the lure before deciding to commit to it. 

Ready to learn more?

I really hope you liked this article and learned knowledge that helps you enjoy this amazing spring run we are having!

But if you want to learn it all, you should really check out LAFB Elite, my exclusive membership providing the best know-how for inshore anglers.

Questions? Comments? Scroll down to chime in below!

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