The Dave Holder Fishing Show was held in Houston recently and, as usual, it was nothing short of fantastic. I was there, and it was like a traffic jam of people from Southeast Texas that included Sabine Lake guide Dickie Colburn, East Bay guide Jim West and a whole lot of Beaumont fishermen looking to get the latest on what’s going on in the world of saltwater fishing.
While looking around at thousands of lures on display, the one that got a heck of a lot of attention is the all new Vudu Shrimp by Egret Baits. Ken Chaumont, who designed that soft plastic lure, says they sold hundreds.
“The Vudu Shrimp is easy to fish and will catch up to 20 to 30 fish per bait,” said Chaumont, who is based out of East Texas. “They come in a variety of colors, two to a pack and cost $7. Most anglers are fishing them under rattle floats on Lake Charles and Sabine Lake. But you can also fish them on bottom. They are rigged on a 3/16-ounce lead head. Some of the most popular colors right now are dark green, pink and white with a chartreuse tail.”
Colburn was hanging out at the Laguna Rod booth. Those rods are made in Katy by Chris Williamson. I’ve been using them for the past year or so and can tell you for sure they are ultra-light and a pleasure to fish with. You can see the complete line of these rods at Daley’s in Port Acres. That’s where you can also find one of the hottest lures on Sabine Lake – the Maniac Mullet. By the way, Colburn told me that’s the lure he used late last week to catch a box of 3 to 4 pound trout on Sabine. A Maniac Mullet is similar to a Corky Devil. It’s a slow sinker that twitches back and forth on a jerk-and-reel retrieve. The hot color is pink.
Something else I noticed is that kayaking for reds and trout on Keith Lake is very popular. I talked with several anglers from Southeast Texas that were at the show to shop for kayaks. There were plenty on hand. Another thing I noticed is that the latest jag in kayaks is not paddling them but keeping the battery charged that propels a compact trolling motor. The new wave of “yakers” are into moving their kayaks with trolling motors. The “yaks” are steered via a rudder that’s controlled with your feet. It’s an excellent way to thoroughly fish a marsh shoreline for reds and flounder.
Guide Jim West has been catching some pretty good stringers of trout on East Galveston Bay. I sat in on one of his seminars at the fishing show, and he said the best bite has been late in the day.
“The best bite has been … after the sun has warmed up the water,” said West. “I’m using tails and slow sinking MirrOlures to catch some pretty solid trout. The last hour or so of daylight has been the best. Basically I’m looking for mullet over mud and shell in about 4 feet of water.”
B.A.S.S. and Jasper-based Sealy Outdoors offer cash to amateur anglers
Imagine being 11 years old and reeling in a bass weighing more than 11 pounds. Now envision winning cash and prizes of $100,000 to go along with that trophy catch.
That’s a life-changing event for a child out having fun with his family, and it’s exactly what unfolded at a Big Bass Splash tournament held by Sealy Outdoors.
This year, Sealy Outdoors based out of Jasper and B.A.S.S. have united to market and promote the Big Bass Splash on Sam Rayburn, bringing together top industry names in tournaments that are philanthropic as well as fun, raising funds for the Ronald McDonald House and other McDonald’s charities.
As part of the agreement, B.A.S.S. members can earn additional prizes through the new B.A.S.S. Cash contingency program of the Big Bass Splash. At each event, Sealy awards cash prizes to the largest bass brought to the scales on an hourly basis. Now, with the involvement of B.A.S.S., an extra prize of $100 will be awarded to the B.A.S.S. member weighing in the heaviest fish during the 6 a.m. to 7 a.m. and 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. hours each day. An additional $250 will be awarded at the end of the event to the highest finishing B.A.S.S. member if they are in the top 5 for the overall event. The contingency is available only to B.A.S.S. members. Non-members will be able to join B.A.S.S. on location at each event.
According to Bruce Akin, CEO of B.A.S.S., “This partnership will strengthen B.A.S.S.’s already extensive reach into the grass roots of sportfishing, expanding it to wider audiences, especially recreational anglers, youngsters and those new to the sport.”
B.A.S.S. cash will be featured at six events and kicks off in East Texas on Sam Rayburn April 19-21. That one is followed up with the Toledo Bend event May 17-19.
“We are joining forces with B.A.S.S. in order to help bass fishing grow,” said Bob Sealy, founder of Sealy Outdoors. “We want to get more people involved in fishing, and so does B.A.S.S. We’re very family-oriented.”
Fans will have an opportunity to visit the B.A.S.S. booth at the Big Bass Splash tournaments and sign on as B.A.S.S. members to qualify for the program prior to each tournament. If the big bass is not caught by a B.A.S.S. member, the prize goes to the next heaviest bass catch by a B.A.S.S. member if that winner is in the Top 5.
Participants can sign up for Big Bass Splash events online.