A Kayak-Fishing Cajun Road Trip

Two ‘yak enthusiasts hit the road for a week in winter and find big redfish and adventure along the coast of Louisiana.

In December, Mike Conneen and I took a week-long kayak-fishing trip to Louisiana. Our first stop was Venice. We stayed at Reelivin Lodge with Capt. Carol LeCompte, and fished with Carol and Capt. Brian Sherman at kayakvenicela.com. Spectacular! From there we went to Cocodrie, staying at Coco Marina. A nasty cold front arrived there at the same time, pretty much blowing us out. We got a few fish but it was tough going. The final stop was Grande Isle, where we camped in the state park. We fished on the south side of the highway, sight fishing in shallow duck ponds that were full of redfish. At the end of the day (and week), we had an awesome trip! — Capt. John Kumiski

In the Marsh

John Kumiski battles a redfish in the marsh near Grande Isle, Louisiana. He's actually standing in a kayak.Mike Conneen

Workin' that Vudu

The Vudu Shrimp became one of Mike Conneen's favorite baits while we were in Louisiana. Fish like this red were the reason why.Capt. John Kumiski

Favorite Bait

A closeup of the favorite bait of Capt. Carol LeCompte of Reelivin' Charters. Every time he hooked a fish, he'd holler, "Vudu, baby!" We heard it throughout the day for two days in a row.

Eerie Dawn

West of the Mississippi River in Venice, you'll find a dead cypress forest. We fished there early one morning.Capt. John Kumiski

Waiting for the Strike

Mike Conneen works a lure in the fringes of that dead cypress forest, hoping to find a redfish, trout, black drum or flounder.Capt. John Kumiski

Success

Conneen scores near the marsh edge. He caught lots of fish on during this adventure.Capt. John Kumiski

Welcome to Grand Isle

This view of the bridge leading to Grand Isle offer some idea of just how important fishing is to this part of coastal Louisiana.Capt. John Kumiski
The scars left by Hurricane Katrina have not fully healed. This sport-fishing boat was washed into the marsh at the dead cypress forest (which was alive before the hurricane). Conneen casts a line at the structure.Capt. John Kumiski

Shad-Tail Red

No matter where I go fishing the DOA 3-inch Shad Tail does the job for me.Capt. John Kumiski
The marsh around Grande Isle consists of spartina grass flats intersected by tidal streams with various sizes of duck ponds, as well as dredged canals. Here, Conneen casts for redfish in a tiny pond.Capt. John Kumiski

Red to the Boat

Conneen prepares to ease another red to the kayak so it can be released.Capt. John Kumiski

Redfish Release

This was the first fishing trip to the Bayou State for Florida resident Conneen, and this was his very first Louisiana redfish. Some of the inshore oil rigs at Venice are in the background.Capt. John Kumiski

Gulf of Mexico Sunset

All good things must come to an end, as did our Cajun kayak adventure.