The mouth of the San Bernard River is still sanded shut, in spite of recent heavy rains and high tides – as verified by aerial photos taken by Albert Smith and shared by Roy and Jan Edwards (www.sanbernardtx.com). The one advantage to this situation I had not thought of is that a hard core beach fisherman would be able to drive the right vehicle pretty much from Sargent to the west bank of the mouth of the “New” Brazos River (which is the Gulf outlet canal created when the original river mouth was closed off and jettied to form the Brazosport harbor), covering a lot of good fishing area that is hard to get to when the River mouth is open.
The bad news – San Bernard mouth still closed
With the cut on Wolf Island that allows Lost Lake to have a Gulf inlet/outlet open now, it would take an amphibious vehicle to make it to the mouth of the Brazos.
A “reader” asked a question recently about Wolf Island, which is bordered by the Gulf on the South, the New Brazos River on the East, the ICW on the north, and the San Bernard River to the west – normally. There is a large, shallow “lake” covering most of the interior of Wolf Island – “Lost Lake” – and it is sometimes open to the Gulf via a narrow cut, other times it is shut off by a sandbar. Many years ago I went over to the Island by boat from the mouth of the Brazos. It was not a “clean” beach – I mostly walked on large driftwood logs, instead of the sand. The cut was open at that time, and I attempted to wade it to check the depth, but there were so many blue crabs in the water – AGGRESSIVE blue crabs – that I changed my mind. When the cut IS open, there might be some good fishing for reds and seasonal trout back on those shallow flats – and they certainly don’t see much pressure. Back in the days when I made my brief exploratory journey to the Island, there was an active shark fishing club in Brazoria County, whose members mostly fished off the beach. I met some of them at the Brazos River mouth, and they told me stories of taking flat-bottomed boats across to Wolf Island, running the deeper gut in the surf down the beach at least as far as the cut. They reported good action for big sharks,as well as bull reds.
As we can see from the photo, the cut through the beach to Lost Lake appears to be wider than the “New” Brazos River mouth. If the beach erosion from the San Bernard being closed continues – and/or gets help from storm tides – Wolf Island might be split into a couple of islands one day? In the meantime, it COULD be reached by 4WD or beach buggy if one wanted to drive all the way from Sargent, (which would be quite an adventure) or by a short boat ride and longer walk from the “New” Brazos mouth – and would probably be a real surf fishing hotspot!
In recent years, the action of the surf and river currents of the Brazos have enlarged and probably deepened the gut on the immediate Wolf Island side of the Brazos to almost a lagoon, with the sandbar between it and the Gulf practically a small island in itself – although this situation is subject to change with the tides – literally. Those wishing to explore this water by small boat should be cautious, and do it in calm weather.
In my book, “FISHING THE TEXAS GULF COAST”, I dedicate a chapter to my favorite places on our coastline for fishing – Boca Chica Beach between the Brownsville jetties and the mouth of the Rio Grande is one, and so is Wolf Island. It is also the setting for my fiction story, “The Hermit”, which was first published in Salt Water Sportsman many years ago.