By: Glynn Harris
Forty-four year old Wesley Miller is a busy fellow. He lives along Dorcheat Bayou between Doyline and Sibley in Webster Parish. As a professional, Miller is a registered nurse who happens to be a serious outdoorsman and has made his name in at least two ways.
Two years ago, Miller put an arrow through a huge 13 point buck that scored 165 6/8 inches, a buck that stands in fourth place on the all-time trophy list for archery in Louisiana.
As much as he loves to deer hunt, there is another passion that is taking most of his time now to the point that he has put his nursing career on hold for the time being. He is one of north Louisiana’s most popular and busiest crappie guides.
“I decided that if I was going to be serious about guiding, I elected to lay my nursing job aside to see how guiding works out. So far, “said Miller “I have been as busy as I want to be guiding clients on several lakes and waterways across the state.”
We caught up with Miller recently to pick his brain a bit on what it is like to be a full-time fishing guide and how he manages to put clients on big crappie on a regular basis on our area lakes and waterways.
“Right now I’m finding fish in different places and different situations in every lake we fish. Some lakes I’m finding fish on brush piles and on others the fish are suspended in open water. I have to hunt them differently every day,” Miller said.
A recent guide trip to Grand Bayou Reservoir near Coushatta is an example of how a guide who knows his business has to adapt to changing conditions.
“I was on Grand Bayou awhile back and found schools of fish out in open water with 40 to 50 fish in each school. Using my Live Scope, we would catch a couple out of one school, move around and find another school and catch a few active fish out of it.
“We were down there again the following day and every fish we caught was over a brush pile. With this new technology, you go to a spot and if there aren’t active fish there, you go to another spot and try something else. It can change from day to day,” he said.
What about looking for crappie now that the weather is beginning to cool down? Is there a pattern you can depend on to fish for early fall crappie?
“I have found that crappie will move some when weather changes but in reality, the only time when fish really change locations is during the spring spawn. Other than that,” Miller added, “crappie will be generally in the same spot all year, maybe a little deeper or more shallow but they won’t move very far.”
Miller has some favorite jigs he and his clients use and these are jigs he ties himself and they seem to work well day in and day out.
“When I tie my jigs I use hackle feathers instead of straight-tail feathers. They look more like the gills on a bait fish than the straight ones. I also make my jigs quite small, usually less than two inches long because they look more like bait fish than larger ones,” he said.
Switching gears, Miller deer hunts on family property in Webster Parish, an area where he got the big one.
“I live ten minutes from my family farm and since I’m guiding so much, I probably won’t get to deer hunt as often as I’d like,” he said. “I should still be able to hunt afternoons and those mornings when the weather is so bad we can’t fish. Bad weather days are often your best hunting days anyhow.”
If you’re interested in booking a guide trip with Miller, you can reach him at 318/465-1668 or find him on Face Book at Big Sasquatch Outdoors.