While this year has seen the worst start to fishing for a new year that I can recall, we have to start thinking about what lies ahead rather than dwell on the past.

Several readers have asked if I could recall a worse beginning of a new year for fishing the Galveston area and I cannot. We have mentioned this several times since Jan. 1, and one thing is almost certain, it will eventually change.

I would much rather deal with poor fishing and fishing conditions this time of year than have to face the aftermath of a major fish-killing freeze. The fish are surviving, just scattered as a result of the on-and-off weather patterns of very cold for a few days and seasonal temperatures for the rest..

Most long-time anglers, perhaps I should say “old salts” like me, agree that after Valentine’s Day the chances of a major freeze affecting our stocks of fish are greatly diminished.

My focus now is to keep an eye on the black drum migration, as that should tell us a lot about what lies ahead. Any day now we should start seeing signs of black drum running along the jetties and then to the Galveston Channel, Texas City Dike and other parts of lower Galveston Bay.

The black drum run is the first major fishing event around Galveston each year. For the last two years it was overall a disappointment and fishing for the most part for the remainder of the year was not up to par.

It will be late February or early March before a reliable assessment of this year’s run can be made.

Capt. Joe Kent is a columnist for The Daily News. Report your catch to reel.report@galvnews.com or call 409-683-5273.

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