Any local will tell you that one of the best advantages of the Corpus Christi area is how accessible it is for fishing enthusiasts. Public fishing possibilities are endless: whether from a pier, boat, or kayak, veterans and amateur anglers alike can make a great catch and create lasting memories.
Corpus Christi is the perfect place to learn the basics if you’re new to fishing. Most people at local piers are happy to provide a few pointers, and bait stands are eager to set you up with the right tackle. First, you’ll need a rod, reel, and—most importantly—bait. Pick up these items at box stores like Academy, or rent them for $2 on public piers like Red Dot and Cos Way at the Intercostal Turnaround and the Bob Hall Pier on North Padre Island.
Equipped with the right gear, your next task is to obtain a license (available in most convenient stores) and acquaint yourself with current fishing regulations. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department website outlines the latest parameters on length and bag limits, and their Outdoor Annual publication includes helpful tips on how to measure and identify different species.
Since fishing is all about having the right bait in the right place at the right time, perhaps the best way to ensure a successful trip is by hiring a guide. Local guides are fluent in state restrictions and familiar with the best spots, and hassle-free, planned excursions allow you to focus on having fun. Captain Joey Farah has been fishing in the area for more than 25 years. Excursions with Farah begin at Marker 37 on North Padre Island, where Farah’s Backwater Adventures provides fully guided trips that include all the necessary tackle. It’s a great way to get out on the water and enjoy some of the best fishing in the Laguna Madre and Baffin Bay. Farah often pauses to cook fresh fish “Shore Lunch Style,” and restaurants like Doc’s and Scuttlebutt’s will cook your catch so you can enjoy the fruits of your labor.
If you’re looking for a quieter adventure, consider buying or renting a kayak to escape the hustle and bustle while fishing. Frank Floyd, owner of Wind & Waves Watersports, sells and rents surfboards, kayaks, and accessories. Floyd opened his store in 1987, long before kayaking became one of the most popular ways to fish around Corpus Christi. It’s a great way to get away from the crowds and just enjoy a day on the water—regardless of your catch. You’re on vacation, after all. Just get out there and slow down.