Houston area summer fly fishing
Lake Houston- Sunfish are bedding, Bass bite has been best early in the morning or late in the evening. Poppers are producing with a decent streamer bite in between. Watch for carp they have been around and willing.
Lake Conroe- Bowfin have been busting topwaters and wolfing around the flats taking crawfish patterns. Grass carp are everywhere as always and eating
Urban bayous- Grass carp have been super aggresive along with the Smallmouth Buffalo. Commons are around but mostly scattered lately. Tilapia and Gar have been all over to.
Texas, Racks and Quacks- Bass on topwaters or streamers early in the morning and late in the evening. Strip heavier streamers around during the day. Giant Bluegill on poppers or streamers all day. Alligator gar have been cruising and taking decievers.
February 21st Houston Fly Fishing Report
White bass, Crappie and Yellow bass are all starting their spring spawning rituals up the creeks and rivers of Lake Houston and across Texas. Just before the rain we were catching some solid male Whitebass along with the occasional female. Once the creeks and rivers start to clear in the next week expect for even more Whitebass and yellow bass to be further up river. We also are catching double digits of crappie most days. A lot of 9 inchers but some decent 12” to 15” fish also. Spotted bass and channel catfish have been making appearances also.
Grass carp have been surface sipping consistently. Making it a great time for urban dry fly action! Common Carp have also been roaming the flats and seem very willing to eat almost any well placed bean chain nymph. Tilapia have also started showing up on the flats gearing up for their spawn. Buffalo have been scattered occasionally finding one that'll eat.
Reports of buck bass bedding and Bowfin being caught. It's almost time for Bowfin trips! Grass carp are shallow in warmer days and grumpy but will eat.
Texas Bowfin on the fly Part 2
Putting it together
Since then I have developed a couple ways to target the fish and my favorite is obviously sight fishing. I recently purchased a Diablo Paddle Sport's Amigo sup/kayak hybrid and it's been a game changer poling the mud flats for Bowfin and carp. With the ability to stand and pole in a couple inches of water Ive been able to get shots at super skinny Bowfin mudding, tailing and cruising in hunt mode.
One big give away I've noticed also while paddling around is to watch for air breathing. They have a lung system similar to a gar and will eventually come up for a breathe in a similar fashion. If you find one gulping air try fan casting that area usually he hasn't gone far and a few casts may come up with a hard thump. If it doesn't try changing flies before giving up on him. They'll hunker down in a hole or under structure waiting for food and defending their spot or territory. The more time I've spent out the more I've noticed certain spots always have the same fish rising. Typically the warmer the day and more active the fish is the more you will find them gulping air and the more shots you'll get.
The best by far though is the dap shots next to the yak. When you just happen to lock eyes with a beady eyed Bowfin wriggling his eel like dorsal fin. Yes they will come investigate your boat! Move slow and plop that crawfish pattern right in front of his nose. Twitch it once and do your best to get a strip set. Even if you lose the fish you will never get that creepy image out of your head and will spend the rest of the day hoping for a similar shot.
These are just a few of the consistent strategies I've been able to put together. It's still a learning process and hopefully I'll have more to share in the future! For hands on learning book a paddle trip I'll be glad to show you the ropes!
Fishing Report October 19th
Urban Fly Fishing - has been good with nice flows bringing out all the fish. Common carp have been showing up usually as the day warms up. Smallmouth Buffalo are still scattered around. Grass carp have turned on big time and are super aggressive loving the plop. Fall is a good time for urban carping!
Lake Houston - The Bass bite has been on along with huge Grass carp! A fantastic popper bite early and late in the evening with some streamer fishing the rest of the time. Olive woolly buggers, various colors of clousers, baitfish patterns, and leggy crawfish patterns. The upper creeks have been awesome with decent clarity and cooler temps making a wade or paddle that much better. Streamer fishing is the way to go if you want to catch multiple species LM Bass, Spotted bass, crappie, channel catfish, Whitebass, various sunfish have been making appearances daily.
Grass carp have been found in big groups tailing and backing and even better taking a fly plop in front of them! When I say big I mean 10-20lbers easy! Perfect for sightfishing out of the Diablo’s!
Lake Conroe - Bowfin fishing has been on all day. With plenty in the 3-5lb range eating. Mostly pitching streamers to active fish. Grass carp have been more aggressive here also sucking of flies on the plop!
Fishing Report September 28th
Urban Fly Fishing - has been good with mostly low flows. Big Common carp have been showing up along with Smallmouth Buffalo and if you happen to be on the water during a minor spike in flows look for aggressive rising Grass carp. Fall is a good time for urban carping!
Lake Houston - The Bass bite has been really turning on! A fantastic popper bite early and late in the evening with some streamer fishing the rest of the time. Chartreuse seems to be the ticket for the most part. The upper creeks have been awesome with decent clarity and cooler temps making a wade that much better. Bigger Spotted bass have been tight to structure so expect to lose flies!
Lake Conroe - Bowfin fishing has been on mostly during most of the day. Mostly pitching streamers to active fish. Grass carp have been a little more aggressive. Look for the grassers that look for the plop and don't waste time with spooky fish.