Regional Reports-South

Calcasieu Ship Channel

August in Louisiana is so hot even the fish are sweating! After dark, though, sportsmen enjoy excellent saltwater action wherever lights hit fish-rich waters. Several refineries along the Calcasieu Ship Channel south of Lake Charles illuminate their docks all night. When lights come on, the dinner alarm sounds. Down the channel, numerous camp lights along Calcasieu Lake also provide outstanding night action. But note that most docks are private, and anglers need permission to fish on them. The lake and channel, however, belong to the public. Anglers can access the lighted water from boats. Big redfish, speckled trout and other predators lurking beneath the docks smash crabs, shrimp and baitfish as they pass through the lighted water. Keep baits near the surface. Spinnerbaits and topwaters work night magic on redfish and trout. Pearl, iridescent, glow chartreuse or white plastic grubs, shrimp or minnows entice hungry fish. If fish refuse artificials, hook on a live shrimp or shad without a sinker and let it swim on a free line. Occasionally, lift your rod tip to keep the bait off the bottom. Fish simply can't resist. Contact: Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Department (318-487-5885).