Archive

Monthly Archives: April 2012

The first weekend of JazzFest didn’t disappoint this year. Amanda and I had a blast hanging out with our friends in the Quarter and out at the Fairgrounds. Got to see Amanda Shaw, Shamarr Allen, Cee-Lo, Tom Petty, Trombone Shorty, Dr. John, and the Boss – a nice mix of local talent and big name headliners.

Petty put on my favorite show with a mix of hits and tracks from his Mojo album, plus acoustic versions of “It’s Time to Move On” and “Learning to Fly” and a sweet cover of “Travelling Light” by JJ Cale. Unfortunately we had to leave Cee-Lo early before the Goodie Mob made an appearance in order to get a decent spot for Petty. Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue were pretty awesome as well, they ended their set by having all their band members switch instruments, without missing a beat, pretty badass. Springsteen also put on a great show despite a few hiccups. He probably had the biggest crowd we saw all weekend. We had a great spot though since we set up shop the entire day at the main stage. I haven’t been to JazzFest since college and I’m not sure why, looking forward to next year.

Here are the pics:

IMGP7117

Basically no bodily fluids in a New Orleans cab

IMGP7121

Shamarr Allen & the Underdawgs

IMGP7122

Cee-Lo

IMGP7123

Tom Petty

IMGP7128

The Boss (a little closer than Petty which was the day before)

IMGP7127

 

Crowd shot

This video was a lot more entertaining in person

Traveled down to Plaquemines Parish this past weekend for the IFA Kayak Fishing Tour event held at Delta Marina in Empire. The IFA format is catch-photo-release redfish and speckled trout. Your score is the combined length of your biggest redfish and trout. 34 people showed up to fish the event despite the less-than-stellar weather. A cold front moved into Louisiana over the weekend and Sunday’s post-frontal conditions included high winds, 20-30 mph – nemesis to any kayak fisherman. You could feel the wind shake the cabin at Delta while laying down to sleep Saturday night. Not exactly the confidence boost you want pre-tournament.

There was a chill to the air Sunday morning with the wind howling. The silver lining was the fact that I didn’t see a single bug all day, that hardly ever happens in the marsh.

IMGP7103

At the launch

I fished for trout in the early morning anywhere I could escape the wind. I started picking up rat reds and got on board with a 16″ red. No trout though, so I pressed on, paddling straight into the wind to hit a pond that I knew I’d caught redfish in before. The tide was out so the water was low, I wasn’t sure if I could even make it into the pond, especially with the NW wind blowing the water out. I did make it in and I was greeted with a pair of redfish, backs fully exposed from the tops of their eyeballs to the spot on their tails, crawling around on the mud flat eating crabs. I flipped a jig in front of one of them and after a short fight had him in the boat, 23″. Not bad. By the time I caught him, measured, and took a picture, the other red had moved on. I kept going around the perimeter of this pond and picked up a 22″ red, then another upgrade, a 23.5″ red.

IMGP7112

23″ red

IMGP7114

23.5″

I learned my lesson in the first IFA tournament I fished and now try to pinch the tail for all my fish. Squeeze out every inch you can out of a fish. All the reds in that pond were sight fished, never thought I would be able to do that in 30mph winds, but when the water is low, dirty, and rolling, they have no clue you are there. I was literally hooking and catching them right next to the boat. It was a lot of fun. I left the pond, went back into the bay, to again try for the trout. I fished the rest of the day for trout, trying several different lures, but nothing was working. Water clarity all day wast not what I was hoping for, but there were some pockets of clear water where I was optimistic. I found myself in the same position I was in for Paddlepalooza, except this time it wasn’t a flounder eluding me, it was a trout. A 12″ trout would have netted me 5th place.

Results: http://www.ifakayakfishingtour.com/tournaments/2012/empire_12.html

Congrats to Steve, Clayton, Adam, Devon, and James, all fellow BCKFC members and solid anglers at that. I ended up 13th with my 23.5″ red. There were only 8 people who caught both species and only 20 people caught fish. Conditions were tough and it was reflected in the results. I looked at Weather Underground to see what the observed conditions for Grand Isle, LA were on Sunday and it showed winds at 23mph and gusts up to 39mph.

I  was not very optimistic on the drive down, conditions were going to be tough and I had not fished the area in a long time. However, even with the tough conditions, I had a great time and am happy I was there. It was actually a really pleasant day, the sun was out and the bugs were nowhere to be found. The Cuda exceeded my expectations, slicing through the wind, I never felt it was a burden to paddle, even directly upwind. The rudder was a big help in drifting shorelines, definitely worth it’s weight in gold on a day like Sunday. Maybe one of these days I’ll be able to put it all together and bring home a check. I’ll just have to keep fishing these tourneys until I do. The next Louisiana IFA event is in Delacroix on June 17th.