Wading for Gator Trout

Spotted seatrout can be found all along the gulf coast as well as up and down the eastern coastline. Fishing for these drum family members can be quite simple with countless options on techniques. From live bait, dead bait, and artificial lures, there’s not much that a trout won’t eat. You can sit out on a grass flat for hours and hours and fill the cooler with slot trout less than 20 inches, which is all fine and good if you’re wanting to fill the freezer or invite friends and family over for a fish fry, but what about the anglers looking for that trophy gator trout in the 30 inch range?

Well, tactics may have to change. That’s when it’s time to hoof it along the flats and Rockport, Texas has the perfect wading grounds to search for gator trout.


When wading for gator trout, stealthiness is key. Gator trout have become gators for a reason; their smart. Moving around quietly and looking for signs of gator trout may be the difference between a trophy trout or just another juvenile. You will also want to target them in prime feeding times. They prefer to feed at dusk, dawn or during low light conditions.

Look for thick and healthy seagrass beds that contain sandy potholes. Trout are ambush predators, so they lie in wait for an unsuspecting and easy meal to swim by. The bigger the trout the lazier they seem to be. Work baits like paddle tails, spoons, twitchbaits and topwater over promising areas. Dead and live bait also work under a popping cork. Remember, big baits catch big fish.

The waters surrounding Rockport, Texas is a wade fisherman’s paradise. A great beginner’s place is Little Bay. Redfish and trout like to school up in here, but don’t expect to have the place to yourself. Also try Goose Island State Park at the entrance of Saint Charles Bay and either side of Aransas Bay. These are great places to park and take a fishing hike. Remember when wading to wear stout footwear and to shuffle your feet to avoid the stingrays.


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