Trip Description: We will take four-wheel drive vehicles down Padre Island National Seashore during the anchovy migration, and target blitzing schools of ladyfish, jacks, redfish, and tarpon.
When: Typically a September trip, Friday thru Sunday
Where: Padre Island National Seashore, 20420 Park Road 22, Corpus Christi, Texas
Based on last year’s experience: We start around noon on Friday at Malaquite and run down to about MM 40+ fishing, and camp in that area.
A quick run to the jetties Saturday morning, move back to a camp spot between the 40 and 30 mile marker and then the next day, Sunday, fish on the way back. Shower at Malaquite, load for the return about 1400 and drive home.
Let me know if you are 4WD driver or not when you sign in:
Cost: National Seashore Entrance Fee $10 per vehicle
Directions: About 250 miles (4-5 hours) from central Houston
Search Houston to Malaquite Beach (20420 Park Road 22, Corpus Christi, Texas (Padre Island National Seashore)) in an online mapping program
About the area:
At 60-70 miles long, Padre Island is the longest, undeveloped, barrier island in the world. Anglers with four-wheel drive vehicles can access almost all of it.
Fall brings bait migrations and large schools of predators. The water is typically clear (much more so than Galveston).
• When the club did this trip in September, 2006, 14 anglers hooked 8 tarpon. Countless large ladyfish were brought to hand, as well as some big jack crevalle.
• In 2014, there were 7 anglers. Ladyfish and jacks were the most caught species. Whiting also brought to hand. We saw redfish, but didn’t hook up.
• In 2016, there were 10 anglers. Ladyfish and jacks were the most caught species. Whiting, redfish, bluefish, spanish mackerel, trout were also brought to hand. One shark hooked, but not landed.
The typical fishing method involves cruising the beach while looking for signs of fish. When a school is sighted, anglers bail out of the vehicles and start casting. The Port Mansfield jetties (at the very end) offer deep water access.
Driving on the beach can be difficult. Four-wheel drive vehicles are required. Realize that a tow for a stuck vehicle here could cost you thousands (yes, thousands). Cell phones do not work on the island, except at the extreme ends.
The Malaquite Pavilion offers public showers to get off the sand and salt before the drive home.
Campfires are permitted in fully contained barbecue grills or in a pit dug in the ground, unless there is a fire ban in effect. Bonfires are not permitted anywhere in the park. Remove any burned materials (Ex., charcoal) and pack them out with you.
PINS Check List
Braided wire tippet material
Camera, and spare batteries.
Flies, too many suggestions to list, but start with a Clouser
Fly Rods and reel size 8, 10, and spey, with intermediate or full sink line
5 Gallon Buckets *2
First Aid kit
Flash light or head lamp, one per person
Portable Air Compressor
Portable Battery Jumper
High lift jack
Air Mattress (optional)
Bungies and tie-downs
Canopy, with ropes (optional)
Chair, folding *2
Firewood, and cheater logs
Lantern, gas or battery
Lighter, or propane torch
Mosquito net. (optional)
Portable toilet (optional)
Cast iron skillet
Ice Chests with Ice
Meals, 2 breakfast & 2 supper per person
Propane bottles * 3
Water (1gal/person/day minimum)
Zip lock bags
Bull Frog, or other waterproof sunscreen
Off or permethrin
Sun clothing, long sleeves and long legs (3)
Spinning rods, with braided line (Med)
Surf spinning rod, with braided line
Spoons and Misc Tackle