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Including my time in Colorado (Denver and GJ), I have been fortunate enough to live in 7 states over the last 15 years as I continue with my career. I was blessed to live in Louisiana for a few years and now that I came back to lurk the forum I once so frequented, I figured I should share some of my experiences in case anyone has thought about a trip to the Sportsman Paradise, which I highly recommend.

Too many pictures to share them all (most can be found on my Facebook page which I don't visit anymore), but it has been one of my favorite places to live. The people and the diversity of wildlife were unique and awesome.

Salt water:
Ripping plastics with popping corks for redfish and speckled trout

Jigging cut bait for red snapper at oil rigs (easier than fish in a barrel)

Trolling blades for mahi mahi and tuna (struck out on tuna)

Gigging for flounder in surf flats


Freshwater:
Brim, catfish and sac-a-lait (crappie)

Jugging for alligator gar, which is very fun and tastes great (hand lining something that weighs 25+ lbs!)


Other:
Crawfishing - most underrated food I've ever had!

Crabbing (using a string and chicken neck - awesome!)

Frogging using a cane pole with a small jig. They hit it like a fly when you drop it in from of them


In addition to fishing, I had some great hunting experiences. All in all, southeast Louisiana was great to me and my family. It's a place I would recommend to everyone.






















 

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Okay, I'll be the first to say I am extremely jealous. That looks like great fishing as well as great eats. I love the crawfish boil pic. yum.
 

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Love it!

I 'grew up' on the west coast (born in Denver, but moved to Reno when I was young)... so lots of trout fishing in the Sierra Nevadas/Pyramid lake area, bass fishing all through Northern California, and I spent Summers with grandparents (in Denver, and up in Wisconsin), with a few trips to Florida, Alaska, and a family cabin in Minnesota... Uncle Sam's Armed Rednecks and Militant Youth (US Army) had me in Monterey, California, Middle o' Nowhere Texas, and Maryland. The one constant: Fishing! (almost always freshwater).
 

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Those pictures bring back some good memories of a couple of trips I made to Louisiana and those reds really put up a good fight, good eating too. Crab boils are some first class eating for sure, those blue crabs are real sweet, but watch out for the sharp edges on the shells, I looked like I was in a cat fight when I got done eating. Thanks for sharing.
 

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Thanks everyone. It is an amazing place with a rich ecosystem. I personally wasn't fond of the blue crabs because it was a ton of work (for the reward IMO), but several of my cajun friends can rip through them fast with just a butter knife. My favorite was crawfish by far, but the fresh oysters and jumbo shrimp were hard to beat too.

In addition to everything else, Mardi Gras and the Spring/Fall festival season made this a great place for my family.

But still, some of my best memories were made in Colorado on the front range chasing ducks along the South Platte, camping/fishing/hunting on the Mesa, trout fishing in the San Luis Valley, dirt biking in Rampart Range and the western slope Book Cliffs, and bowhunting in the White River and Routt National Forests (among many other amazing fishing experiences). Yes, I miss Colorado!
 

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WOW!! Ive been getting tired of Colorado and this just makes things worse... Looks like an absolute BLAST!!
 

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Wow man, great post! How is the duck hunting down there, and where are the pics? Canvasbacks and pintails?

Do you miss shooting geese, I reckon they dont go that far in their migration?
 

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Wow man, great post! How is the duck hunting down there, and where are the pics? Canvasbacks and pintails?



Do you miss shooting geese, I reckon they dont go that far in their migration?


Thanks man. Overall, I didn't have the best duck hunting experience. For starters, there is soooo much water. From the flooded timber at the eastern border on the Pearl River, to the Mississippi, to the Atchafalaya Basin, to the flooded rice fields of Acadiana, and the solid Marsh from East to West. I am from Michigan where we have an amazing abundance of water, but southern Louisiana is something else.

And a lot of the accessible marsh lands are owned by roailroad, oil and other large companies who lease them to large hunting clubs. You can fish for redfish and speckled trout all day long, except during hunting season. And duck hunting is a form of religion down there so getting prime hunting on public land/water was tough. I only had 3 seasons and the first one I moved at the start of season so that wiped that year out. Not many people wanted to share info with a yankee, which was understandable and fine. I grew on them and they opened their arms to me all around, just not their duck blinds honestly (and crawfish holes). I had some great scenic hunts, just personally really struggled with finding the birds (I saw thousands in the marsh just west of Lake Pontchartrain on my way home from work – in the Bayou Savage NWR along I-10)

Geese were not as prevalent on the east, but would expect good numbers towards the west along the Sabine River. I pretty much just move around and try to figure it out the best I can before they move me again. Other than CO, never have I lived where I found a website like this with such a great network of sportsmen. (very thankful for meeting Don B. at Gander Mtn in Aurora).







These places were neat. Weekend camps in the Bogue Chitto NWR and Pearl River




Bowhunted a lot (much less people)






And there was this lifetime experience!





I could share my experiences all day long from there, and will point anyone who may head that way to all the places I enjoyed.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Did you do a hog/knife hunt?!?


I was able to go out 5 times. A friend I met from work raises dogs and has a hog removal "business" he uses for training. He is a carpenter general foreman by trade, but raises Catahoula bay dogs and pitbull catch dogs and enters some regional competition hunts (for advertisement and training really), more of a passion I would say - isn't getting rich financially.

I didn't get my first chance until hunt 3. At first I couldn't keep up to make it in time before they tied it up. It was a ton of running through the swamps listening for the bay dogs while containing a 50-60lb pit and maneuvering them through thickets. Two times were skunked. And then trying to find all of the dogs...it is definitely a tough type of hunt and a lot of effort.

They actually kept a couple and brought back to a 1-2 acre fenced area where they trained pups. Also fattened up with corn and waited a couple months to harvest. Took a lot of the game taste out and got more meat for the effort.


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Discussion Starter #13
Didn't mean to hijack my own thread with hunting items in the fishing forum, but i could easily make a completely separate hog hunting thread. It was so much fun and unique. It was always his young son (like 9?) and another buddy and he wouldn't allow a gun as didn't want a dog shot.


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That sounds awesome. I’d love to do a hunt like that. Also the helicopter thing is on my bucket list.....


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Thanks for the info. My uncle is always talking about the different birds that frequent the MS flyway. Sucks its so hard to access water there, but its the same in Tx i reckon. MASS private land owned by people that lease it for hunting.
 

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Brings back great memories. I graduated from LSU School of Forestry and then had a great 35 year career with US Forest Service. Get back down there often as possible. Redfish are my favorite to catch and eat! Now I get my boudin, Andouille, crawfish, crab and oyster fix from the Cajun Grocery in Lafayette--they ship direct.
 
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