Gulf Coast Fisherman Magazine Vol. 38 - No. 1 | Page 5

Editor’s Notes While fewer fishermen participate in the sport this time of year, the winter season is often as productive as those with much less frigid temps. Fish during cold weather have a tendency to follow similar patterns year after year, returning to deep water harbors, channels, etc that offer thermal protection from colder temps near the surface. The same patterns, incidentally, can also be found in the hottest days of summer where the deeper waters offer relief from the scorching temps near the surface. One factor that can make this season more challenging for fishermen, though, are low tides caused by strong northers that blow through on a fairly regular basis starting around midNovember and peaking in February. The winds often lay bare vast expanses of tidal flats and expose reefs typically unseen until this time of year. Many boat ramps also suffer from low water often rendering many unlaunchable from by most boaters. On such days, anglers with a kayak, airboat, or low water running flats boat, can make the difference between being able to fish or staying home. Any motor powered craft able to launch from a low water ramp, can also let a kayak or two piggyback for a trip into the backcountry, or at least a modest trip from the ramp. Such tactics are covered by David Brown this issue in his article titled “Low Water Wonderland (page 7).” One consideration, however, when launching from a very low water ramp, is the stage of the tide at the time you’re leaving the ramp. While the tide might already be very low from a strong north wind, it could even be going lower as the day progresses and the tide naturally ebbs. Just take a look at a tide chart to see what’s predicted. While a high tide might be delayed for several hours or not occur at all, a low tide is going to occur although the change may be less than predicted due to the lower water conditions already at hand. This wouldn’t be big of a deal for an airboat or kayaker that doesn’t necessarily need a ramp to land. For a boat with an outboard, it might be a long wait for enough water to float the boat to the trailer. Cold water in bays that are normally off color, means clear water to depths not seen at any other time of the year. While fishing crystal clear water is not necessarily productive depending on where you are, clear water on normally muddy flats is a distinct advantage for sight fishing. While the thrill of seeing clear water on flats that are usually off color isn’t even a consideration for fishermen in typically perpetually clear waters such as Florida or South Texas, it’s a big deal for those not so fortunate. Take it from me as someone who knows! Good fishing this quarter and keep an eye on the weather. This is not the time of year to take unneccesary chances on the water... NEW BOAT SALES - Renegade Boat Packages. We are the #1 dealer in Texas!!! WE DO: • Compression Checks • Tune-Ups & Utlra Sonic Fuel injection Cleaning • Carb Re-Rebuilds & Ultrasonic Cleaning • Engine Re-Builds • Power Heads • Electrical - Repair, Replacement • Hydraulic Steering Repair - Replace/Install • Lower Unit Repair, Re-build and Replacement • Trim Tab Repair, Replacement and Installation • GPS, VHF, AM/FM/CD/MP3/I-Pod Radios, Transducers, and Antenna Installation • Warranty Work on Suzuki Motors • Boat Moving, 40’ Heavy Duty Triple Axle Trailer With 30,000 lb. Carry Capacity Available SUN COAST MARINE WORKS, LLC 511 Oak Street • La Marque, TX 77568 409-938-3523 CHANGE OF ADDRESS? Don’t forget to send us your change of address at least forty-five days prior to the publication date of the first issue you need to have delivered to the new address. JANUARY • FEBRUARY • MARCH 2014 5