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FLY FISHING: BUFFALO BAYOU IN TEXAS (SOUTHEAST HARRIS COUNTY)

 
 
 

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Destination summary

Buffalo Bayou is a fly fishing location in Southeast Harris County, Texas. This destination has an elevation of -48 feet. Please view the pinpointed location for Buffalo Bayou on the Google Map to the right. If you'd like directions to this destination, please click here and directions will be provided via Google Maps.
 
 

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Latest description: Buffalo Bayou

Buffalo Bayou is a large slow moving body of water that cuts through Houston and eventually flows in the Gulf of Mexico. It gives us local fly fisherman miles of freshwater to target bass, panfish, carp, gar and several other types of non-native species such as talipia. Access in only available through "public parks" such as Terry Hershey Park which is West of Houston by Highway 6 and Buffalo Bayou Park which passes close to downtown close to Memorial Drive and Allen Parkway. You can easily find these parks with a Google search. Public parking is clearly marked and is frequently patrolled by local constables but you still need to exercise caution as you would in any major urban city to protect yourself. Also you will want be alert to the fact that there are snakes and alligators in our bayous.

It is not recommended that you wade or float-tube this body of water! Why? Not only because of the potentially hazardous wildlife, but also the waterway may have hazardous debris. The water quality, while once at a low-point in the ealy 1970's has been dramatically improved and efforts are continuing today to improve this historic and important bayou.

The water clarity most of the time ranges from a greenish-opaque with 2-3 feet of visibility to very muddy depending on how much rain-flow we have. There are a few areas and times when you find patches of clearer water especially in the shallower areas.

Dark colored fly patterns seems to work best in brown, black, orange and red. Also patterns with bulk, rattles or designed to push water seem to work well. For example a dark olive seducer with a bushy hackle collar has worked well for bass. Both the Grass Carp and Commond Carp seem to prefer the dark brown colors without any flash. So if you use small brown wolly buggers use a dull-brass colored bedhead. This same fly also work well for all the panfish including the talapia which will hit flies out of aggression to protect their nest area. Gar? You can catch these toothy critters with just about any fly however hooking up may be a problem. Solution? You add a trailing "stinger" hook to your fly or use a long floss body that get those fibers into their fine rows of sharp teeth! Either way has worked for me. The closer you fish the bottom, do not be surprised if you hook a catfish..a common fish in our bayous here. Finally, if you are lucky, you might catch a bowfish (aka "grinnel") which is considered a prehistoric fish with some awesome teeth so be careful when handling. Otherwise, this fish offers a great fight on a fly-rod and will most fish fly patters.

One final note, while our bayous are not considering as pristine as a Colorado trout streams and nor do they even attempt to be, they are the "essence" of our bayou-based waterways and offer a chance at a wide array of freshwater fish in the heart of our city. Sloppy casts and poor presentations are also not welcome by our local species here. Tight loops into small pockets of vegetation may be required of you and you also may find yourself kneeling down to make a pinpoint presentation to skittish carp. Either way, good fly casting will make this local waterway a great place enjoy many species of fish! If you need a local guide who knows these water well, please contact me and I will introduce you to him. 210-414-7418, Robert L.
(10/28/09 by flycastinginstructor)
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