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Digital Edition

www.FishGame.com The State of

SHARKS

on the Texas Coast

JULY 2013 | VOL. XXX • NO. 3 | $3.95

Monsters in the Surf:

Gulf Gar

Javelina

North America’s Smallest Big Game

Lunker

Watchers TPWD’s Operation World Record

Swim Baits Make a Big Spash for

Texas Bass

Build an AR15 On the K.I.S.S. Principle

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Coastal Edition

www.FishGame.com

Lunker Watchers:

Operation World Record

JULY 2013 | VOL. XXX • NO. 3 | $3.95

The State of

Sharks on the Texas Coast

Monsters in the Surf:

Gulf Gar

Javelina

North America’s Smallest Big Game Swim Baits Make a Big Spash for

Texas Bass

Build an AR15 On the K.I.S.S. Principle

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www.FishGame.com Published by Texas Fish & Game Publishing Co., LLC. Texas Fish & Game is the largest independent, family-owned outdoor publication in America. Owned by Ron & Stephanie Ward and Roy & Ardia Neves.

Roy Neves PUBLISHER

Don Zaidle EDITOR-in-chief

Chester moore Executive EDITOR

C O N T R I B U T O R S

Joe Doggett Doug Pike Ted Nugent Bob Hood Matt Williams Calixto Gonzales Lenny Rudow Steve LaMascus Lou Marullo Kendal Hemphill Reavis Wortham Greg Berlocher Paul Bradshaw Capt. Mike Holmes Dustin Ellermann Lisa Moore John Gisel

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

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TEXAS FISH & GAME (ISSN 0887-4174) is published monthly by Texas Fish & Game Publishing Co., LLC., 1745 Greens Road, Houston, Texas 77032. ©Texas Fish & Game Publishing Co., LLC. All rights reserved. Content is not to be reprinted or otherwise reproduced without written permission. The publication assumes no responsibility for unsolicited photographs and manuscripts. Subscription rates: 1 year $19.00: 2 years $34.75; 3 years $48.50. Address all subscription inquiries to Texas Fish & Game, 1745 Greens Road, Houston, Texas 77032. Allow 4 to 6 weeks for response. Give old and new address and enclose latest mailing address label when writing about your subscription. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: TEXAS FISH & GAME, 1745 Greens Road, Houston, TX 77032. Address all subscription inquiries to TEXAS FISH & GAME, 1745 Greens Road, Houston, TX 77032. Email change of address to: dhruzek@fishgame. com Email new orders to: dhruzek@fishgame.com Email subscription questions to: dhruzek@fishgame.com. Periodical postage paid at Houston, TX 77267-9946 and at additional mailing offices.

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CONTENTS FEATURES

JULY 2013 • Volume XXX • NO. 3

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Swimbaits make a big splash Giant baits that closesly mimic live baitfish, swimbaits have made a major impact in the bass fishing world—when the aim is catching size over numbers of fish.

by John N. Felsher Gulf Gar Known mainly as denizens of rivers and the depths of freshwater reservoirs, alligator gar in surprising numbers—and size—can be found in estuary waters and surf along the coast.

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Inland/north cover: Lunker Watchers The Texas Parks & Wildlife Department’s Toyota ShareLunker program has spawned an aggressive drive to break the world bass record right here in Texas. Story by John N. Felsher Cover Photo by Doug Stamm

STORY:

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by Chester Moore

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Smallest big game in north america The collared peccary, or javelina, makes up for its diminutive stature with Attitude and a mouthful of ivory daggers.

by Gayne C. Young

Build a Defensive Ar-15 on the k.i.s.s. Principle So easy to customize, it is very tempting to over-accessorize an AR-15. Sometimes it is best to get back to basics — and “Keep It Simple, Stupid.”

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Despite heavy fishing pressure, as well as pressure from an increasingly hostile environment, Texas shark numbers remain robust. Story by Calixto Gonzales Cover Layout by TFG

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coastal cover: The State of Sharks STORY: on the Texas Coast

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CONTENTS COLUMNS & DEPARTMENTS

JULY 2013 • Volume XXX • NO. 3

COLUMNS

DEPARTMENTS

Editor’s Notes 10 The Legion of the

Texas Saltwater 29 Fully

by DON ZAIDLE TF&G Editor-in-Chief

by Calixto Gonzales TF&G Saltwater Editor

Anti-Cross(bow)

Expo’d

Chester’s Wild Life Texas Bow Hunting 14 42 Outdoors Time’s

8 letters 12 TF&G Report 12 big bags & catches

34 texas dept. of

Inspirations

A-Wastin’

defense

by CHESTER MOORE TF&G Executive Editor

by Lou Marullo TF&G Bow Hunting Editor

44 True green

Doggett at Large 16 The Well Mannered

Angler

Pike on the Edge 18 Evolution of

Fishing

Digital:

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by JOE DOGGETT TF&G Senior Contributing Editor

Hunt Texas 43 Just Call Me a

Hunter

by Doug Pike TF&G Senior Contributing Editor

by bob hood TF&G Hunting Editor

TexasWild 20 Stop Whining and

Texas Freshwater 51 Electronics Not Just for

by Ted nugent TF&G Editor At Large

by matt Williams TF&G Freshwater Editor

Commentary 21 Fishing for

Open Season 56 Men Seeking

by Kendal Hemphill TF&G Politcal Commentator

by reavis wortham TF&G Humor Editor

Enjoy the Hunt

Memories

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Depth Finding Any More

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iPad u iPhone u Android u COMING SOON: u Kindle Fire u

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Letters to the Editor It’s a Snapper-EatTriggerfish World I was wondering if Mike Holmes was going to mention the booming red snapper populations in his article, “Trigger-Unhappy” in the May issue. The end of the article hits the nail on the head. We catch very few triggerfish on our boats off of the central Texas coast these days. We definitely believe the booming snapper population to be the culprit. I did not think about the snapper eating the triggerfish eggs, but I can assure you that they are eating huge numbers of immature triggerfish. We see this at our fish-cleaning house every day during our short red snapper season. As Mike wrote at the end of the article, we wonder what species will be next on their menu. Thanks for doing a great job with you magazine.

Jerry Montalbo Port Aransas, TX

Zero Brains Policies Kendal Hemphill’s and Ted Nugent’s columns in the May issue hit the nail on the head. At present, there are no solutions to our so-called “gun control problem” that has been presented by any member of Congress. Like the “Zero Tolerance Policies” that many schools have initiated, gun control bills are no-solution, knee-jerk reactions to appease the public and maintain positions of political power. Politicians don’t address the problems, grossly overreact to small incidents, and absolutely do not offer any positive response. None of the unfortunate tragedies that have taken place in recent times would have been prevented by any of the initiatives that Congress is attempting to shove down our throats. For examples of failed gun control “solutions,” look to England or Australia. Make it unlawful to possess a gun, and the crime rate skyrockets because all the “good guys” have complied under threat of prosecution, but the bad guys just laugh at the stupidity of the laws and now feel unthreatened by a 8 |

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disarmed public. If we want to get serious about young people committing so many outrageous atrocities, let’s look to the entertainment industry/media. They have made gratuitous killing, mayhem, murder, bloody gore, and blowing up all creation into a fun and happy experience. Where do our young people get the idea that it’s cool and fun to kill 13 or so of their classmates? Check out the latest video games or “R” rated “action” movie and you get the idea. When a young person is lulled into a sense of having fun by killing people and then top it off with bullying, you get the Columbine and Connecticut experience. Instead of blaming responsible gun owners, they should look farther afield than the individual’s fit of anger/depression. This is more a responsibility of our culture than that of an individual or a group of law-abiding gun owners. Lookout “Roman Empire,” Nero’s in America and he’s got a lighter! Charles W. Chaplinski LTC, USA, Retired Via email

Power of the Father I always enjoy Chester Moore’s articles and especially enjoyed “The Power of the Father” in the May issue. This is a message that needs to be heard by so many today. My family and friends know that I am easily inclined to climb up on my soapbox and preach about the decline in moral values in America today. It is my belief that many of the problems we face in American society today are directly attributable to the deterioration of the traditional Christian American family, which is and should be led by an upright and involved father. I am proud to say that I have been married to the same woman, my beautiful wife, for 29 years. Our children have all grown up in church, active in their youth groups, and in the same community with their grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins, who have always been deeply involved in all aspects of their lives. As a result, we’re blessed with three really great kids--caring, loving, smart, com-

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passionate, and service oriented. We also love all things outdoors. I am a life-long hunter and fisherman, but most of all just a general outdoor enthusiast and wildlife lover. As much as I love to hunt and fish, I’m just as happy catching fireflies, watching sunsets, walking in the woods, looking for animal tracks and sign, star gazing, sitting around a campfire, swimming in the lake, etc… and all of our kids have enjoyed these activities with us for their entire lives. Not only does it build close family relationships, but all of our kids understand real conservation and are connected to nature. Tim Sharp Plano, TX

Rethinking High Fences Don Zaidle’s Editor’s Notes column, “Re-Thinking High Fences,” is a good summary. I believe in private property and free enterprise, but I own businesses and can tell you that high-fence hunting is a business. I must pay many types of taxes: property tax, sales tax, inventory tax, etc., but a highfence operation does not have all these taxes. They also don’t have OSHA, the EPA, local health departments, etc. looking over their shoulder and monitoring everything they do. If high fence operations had all of the above issues, like other businesses, you would not see so many high fence hunts.

W.T. Gill Via email

Send your Comments to: Editor, Texas Fish & Game 1745 Greens Rd Houston TX 77032 Email: editor@fishgame.com

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Editor’s Notes by Don Zaidle | TF&G Editor-in-Chief

Legion of the Anti-Cross(bow)

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or some inexplicable reason, I recently received a small spate of letters decrying crossbows and users thereof. More precisely, I received one letter, which I published with an appropriately snarky retort in the May issue, which in turn prompted a handful of additional letters calling me an old meanie. I dared to challenge the Legion of the Anti-Cross(bow) religion, you see, and dissing someone’s religion is highly taboo. Or so they tell me. Since all of the specious arguments against crossbows have been shot down time and again, the one thing to which Anti-Cross Legionnaires cling in hopes of convincing someone that only their method is “real bowhunting” is the absurd notion that “drawing in the presence of game” is some mystical ninja skill only an elite few can master. Which means precisely bupkiss, even were it true. I did it at age 12 with a 40-pound recurve bow. So, since the Legionnaires seem hell-bent on a new Crusade to cleanse the land of evil, let’s once again wield a stick upon yon moribund equine: Crossbows wound too much game. Were this true, Texas would not have legalized crossbows during the general season. Further, the state eliminated the minimum draw weight requirement for longbow, recurve, and compound bows, a situation more likely to result in crippling shots. A crossbow is no more or less lethal than any other bow. Crossbows are not “primitive.” Clear historical evidence dates crossbows to around 300 B.C. 10 |

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Crossbows are not true archery equipment. A crossbow uses energy stored in a flexible bow to propel an arrow—just like any other type of bow. The bow is mounted to a stock and has a trigger, but on that basis, a modern compound bow is not “true” archery equipment with its intricate cable and pulley systems that dramatically reduce the holding weight once drawn; glow-in-the-dusk sights; mechanical release (with a trigger, no less); stabilizer; string peep sight; any one of a variety of technologically advanced rests; and arrows made of space-age materials tipped with laser-cut or complex mechanical broadheads. Further, TPWD deems crossbows archery equipment since they are legal in archery-only Grayson County—except during archery season, a political capitulation to the Legion’s hue and cry to keep at least Grayson County “pure.” Crossbows are too easy to learn to use. Having hunted with a longbow, a compound, and a crossbow, I find this argument dubious at best. Even if true, I cannot fathom why it would matter. Crossbows will flood the bow season with hunters. Almost all hunting in Texas is on private land. Will landowners suddenly swing open their pasture gates to anyone wielding a crossbow? A few more hunters might show up on public lands—but don’t we want more hunter participation? Crossbows have greater range and lethality. A crossbow is no more or less effective or lethal than a modern compound bow, and maximum range is identical (40 yards). Even if crossbows were more lethal, isn’t that a good thing? And isn’t this at odds with the “more cripple losses” argument? F i s h

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You do not have to draw and hold a crossbow in the presence of game. Again, I cannot fathom the reasoning behind this argument. In any event, the argument is moot since a Draw-Loc device that holds a compound bow at full draw is legal in Texas. Crossbow hunters are less dedicated and will practice less. There is no evidence to support this argument. On what basis does a person’s choice of hunting arm reveal anything about their character or dedication? Too many deer will be killed. There is no evidence to support this claim, but plenty to support the opposite. Effective range is the same for all forms of archery equipment, and that factor alone translates to fewer kills with bows than with firearms. Pope & Young does not accept crossbow kills as records. So what? Why should that prevent someone who just wants to hunt and doesn’t care about “making the book” from hunting with a crossbow during archery season? If we allow crossbows in archery season, next it will be muzzleloaders. This is utter nonsense—and clearly untrue. In no stretch of convoluted logic is a black powder firearm comparable to a bow of any kind. A muzzleloader is, after all, a firearm. In summary, there is no valid reason not to use crossbows, or not to call it “archery” or “bowhunting.” Crossbows are here. They are legal. Their use is ethical. It is bowhunting. Get over it and move on. For additional commentary on this issue, see Ted Nugent’s “TexasWild” column on page 20 and Bob Hood’s “Hunt Texas” column on page 43. Contact Don Zaidle at DZaidle@fishgame.com

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The TF&G Report New Twist in Record Buck Battle

Just when I thought the story behind a pair of giant whitetail bucks taken last season by bowhunters A.J. Downs of Conroe and Robert Taylor of Aubrey couldn’t become any more controversial than it already is…… it did. If there has ever been a more topsy-turvy tale of the tape than this one, I haven’t heard about it. It has been almost comical in a sense. And that’s sad, because the two bucks in question are no laughing matter. Both animals rank among the biggest ever taken in North America. One of them is a new state record for non-typicals by archery gear

on Texas open range. The seed for all the controversy lies in the fact that the final scores on the two enormous racks keep changing, seemingly as often as the East Texas weather. I’ll do my best to explain, but I must warn you. The road we’re about to go down is a winding one with more twists and turns than a roller coaster ride. Here’s a little history leading up to the most recent hairpin curve: San Jacinto County Whopper The Downs buck, a 28 pointer killed on Sept. 29 in San Jacinto County, originally netted out at 253 3/8 after 60 days drying, according to measurements tallied by Randy Reeves and Bob Sweisthal, both of Spring. Reeves is an official scorer for the Boone and Crockett Club and the Texas

Big Bags&Catches

Axis

Drum

Mountain Home

Galveston

Kristine and Morgan Holden with a 33-inch axis their dad Shawn Holden shot on their Mountain Home lease, which is a “free range, low fence ranch.”

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Bonnie Barbier accomplished two firsts: her first fish caught from a kayak, and her first bull drum. The “big ugly” measured 35 inches and was caught in the Galveston Ship Channel at Apfel Park.

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Big Game Awards program. Sweisthal has been scoring for the Pope and Young Club for 35 years. B&C has been the official records keeper for native North American big game animals taken on open range by legal hunting methods for nearly 125 years. P&Y caters strictly to North American animals taken with bow and arrow. TBGA is a joint effort between Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the Texas Wildlife Association that began in the early 1990s. It maintains Texas records for high and low fence bucks. Downs’ original score—which topped that of the former P&Y state record by nearly two feet—was high enough to make it the No. 9 P&Y non-typical of all time in North America. The deer earned him an invitation to P&Y’s 28th biennium convention panel scoring session held in Ft. Worth last February and to the B&C convention panel scoring held April 30—May 4 in Reno, Nev. Panel judging is done in order to verify the accuracy of the original measurements on top end big game animals. The Taylor Buck Taylor joined the mix on Dec. 29, when he arrowed a magnificent non-typical on Dec. 29 in Grayson County. The rack was originally “green” scored as a 42-pointer at 249 2/8 net by Jennifer Barrow, a B&C and TBGA scorer from Decatur and Eric Stanosheck, a B&C scorer from Haslet. Green scores are tallied ahead of the mandatory 60-day drying period required before a rack can be rescored as official. Most racks shrink a little during the drying period, but Taylor’s didn’t. In fact, his score jumped more than five inches to 254 4/8 (1 1/8 inch bigger than the Downs buck) after Stanosheck and Barrow took a different route when evaluating one of the main beams and a G3 tine during the final scoring session last March. The adjustment also allowed Taylor’s buck to be scored as a 44 pointer instead of 42 pointer.

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TBGA accepted Taylor’s revised score, which at the time made it the top low fence non-typical ever entered in the program. However, because the deer was not 60 days dry prior to P&Y’s Dec. 31, 2012 deadline for the 28th biennium, it will not be eligible for P&Y panel judging until 2015. Downs’ Score Dips Then Jumps Downs was initially excited about the idea of having his deer judged by P&Y’s panel of expert scorers. However, the experience turned sour when he learned the judges had docked his net score to 245 4/8 (more than eight inches) based on what was interpreted to be an errant judgement call in the way some of the freak tines were originally measured by Reeves and Sweisthal. It is worth noting that it has been more than three months since the Downs buck underwent P&Y panel judging. The hunter says he has received a plaque from P&Y that wears his adjusted score. However, he still has not received an official score sheet that would invariably explain some of the discrepancies P&Y panel judges found in his original score. The most recent twist in this confusing tale of the tape surfaced last week when Downs received a letter from B&C indicating that two different B&C judging panels had scored his deer in early May. The letter states: “If your score has increased, both panels came up higher than the original score. As such, the two panels agreed upon the enclosed score chart to accept.” The final number on the B&C panel score sheet is 256 4/8. That’s 3 1/8 inch higher than the original score tallied by Reeves and Sweisthal, and a whopping 11 inches more than what the P&Y panel came up with.

scorers for these panel judging sessions,” he said. “It’s not uncommon for there to be a difference of 2-3 inches on deer like these, but to have an 11 inch difference between two panel scores using the same scoring system is pretty excessive.” Taylor Sounds Off Downs is remaining tight lipped about the recent findings until the all the dust settles, but Taylor isn’t. With the state

record non-typical title at stake, he says the guys with the tape measures need put this issue to rest once and for all. “Either somebody is doing something right when it comes to scoring these deer or somebody is doing something bad wrong,” he said. “These two organizations use the same scoring system. They definitely need to get on the same page.”

Non-Typical Difficulty Factor? Big non-typicals can be a booger to score. Many believe you could place a 250inch rack in front of 10 savvy judges and ultimately wind up with 10 different final scores. I’ll buy that. There is a lot that goes into taping such a gnarly maze of bone. One bad judgement call can result in a bunch of ground lost or gained in a hurry. But 11 inches? Stanosheck, a veteran B&C scorer, says 11 inches sounds excessive to him. Sweisthal agreed. “P&Y and B&C bring in their very best and most qualified

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Chester’s Wild Life by Chester Moore | TF&G Executive Editor

Outdoors Inspirations

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t was an incredible moment for Lance Corporal David K. “DJ” Hembree. He had just returned from a back-toback tour of duty in Afghanistan as a dog handler and then Infantry Squad Leader School. The Marine was on Christmas leave when on Dec. 26, 2012 he killed the biggest buck of his life. It was a 14-pointer that scored a whopping 152 7/8 B&C and to make it even sweeter, he took it on a lease near Huntsville that had been in the family for 10 years. Then tragedy struck. “My worst nightmare was realized while putting what I ‘thought’ was a properly unloaded rifle into the gun case and after adjusting the rifle and shutting the case it went off striking my son in the leg around the knee,” said his father David. “Thirty minutes later he was being life flighted to Houston Memorial Hospital where after 16 days, a broken femur, six surgeries and a skin grapht later we brought him home.” “It was definitely a shocking and frightening moment but my training kicked in,” Hembree said. The young Marine directed his father in what to do and bravely fought through the pain to make his way to help. “It was a matter of assessing the situation and doing what was necessary to make it through,” Hembree said. Doctors were hesitant to give him a prognosis but a minimum of a year of physical therapy was in order. Walking unassisted again was in question, at least to medical officials. I received an email from his father May 14 that said, “Last week he turned his cane in. He is now walking unassisted!” His father continued, “From the very moment of the accident and even now the bravery and courage my son displayed and

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the fact that not one complaint has come from him has myself and my family in awe. Indescribable.” From being a young boy fishing and hunting in East Texas to making the brave decision to join the Marines during a time of war is an incredible journey but since last December he has faced a journey of another kind. Facing intense obstacles he was able to reach down to his God-given tenacity and choose to fight on and conquer. No wonder they call them, The Few...The Proud...The Marines! Hembree’s story recalls a feature we did a few years ago about a very inspirational man named Ronnie Hindsman. A long time lineman in his native East Texas, he touched the wrong wires and received a jolt that not only cost him his arms but also put him in a coma for five days. “I was told I would never do this or I would never do that but I knew it wasn’t a matter of me not being able to do something but what I would have to do to make it happen. I was not about to stop living,” Hindsman said. TF&G Publisher Roy Neves and I had the great honor of seeing this in person as I accompanied Hindsman on a crappiefishing trip with members of his family and Sam Rayburn guide Roger Bacon. Bacon told me about Hindsman and said it was important I get out on the water with him. “To see what this guy has gone through and just how well he is able to fish and function in life is incredibly inspiring. He is one of those people that makes you want to be a better person just because you know him,” Bacon said. What we saw and captured on a video you can watch at fishgame.com was an extremely positive attitude, an intense desire to enjoy life and a man who out fished everyone on the boat. Literally. The coolest part of Hindsman’s story was published in the Electric Co-Op from the company that employs him. An article published in Electric Co-Op Today detailed F i s h

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what is likely Hindsman’s most inspirational and sensational act. “…(Hindsman) was shopping in a WalMart near the co-op’s Livingston, Texas, headquarters when he saw a man snatch a woman’s purse and run out of the store.” “Hindsman gave chase through the parking lot and when the suspect slowed to dodge a pole next to a parked car, he made contact.” “I hit him with this right arm of mine and he fell to the ground,” he said. According to the story the whack of the prosthetic limb stunned the suspect until a nearby off-duty police officer arrived to find the man with the victim’s wallet still in his hand. “When it came to someone needing help, he was there,” said Chief Rob Gilbert of the Onalaska, Texas, police department. “If it hadn’t been for Ronnie, no telling what could have happened.” And if brave young men (and women) like DJ Hembree weren’t in the battlefields of the world no telling what might happen right here on American soil. It is amazing that so many of the most decorated military heroes come from outdoors backgrounds where they learn invaluable lessons about life, death and everything in between. I salute them and also the everyday heroes like Ronnie Hindsman who remind us that life is truly a gift and we should never for even a moment take it for granted. God bless and stay inspired.

Catch Chester on the radio Fridays, 6 pm on 560 KLVI Beaumont (www.klvi.com) and Thursdays online on TF&G Radio (www.fishgame.com) Contact him at CMoore@fishgame.com

Watch Chester’s interview with Ronnie Hindsman: www.fishgame.com/video

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Doggett at Large by Joe Doggett | TF&G Senior Contributing Editor

The Well Mannered Angler

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ishing is a gentle sport. Angling has a legacy of sportsmanship that has been passed from generation to generation. Our true mentors—even those with rough edges—carried a concern for the sport and a respect for other anglers. Freeway consciousness clashes with this attitude. When the raw nerves and boiling frustrations of the city hit the tide line, the traditional considerations can suffer. Rude collisions of ego and ignorance are most common during sunny summer weekends. The crush to reach the beach can bring an attitude that does not belong amid skipping mullet, wheeling gulls, and bending rods. The run-the-red-light and the cut-in-line mentality so common on rush-hour streets are a terrible conflict with the hushed promise of a green tide. But it happens. Too often. The first rule is to respect the other angler’s water. The angler in position first deserves space in which to fish without interference. This would seem to be the obvious course but excitement, even selfishness, can override good judgment. It’s that freeway mentality. Either that, or a pitiful lack of class. Competing for the same piece of water will create tension and the interloper is in the wrong. If you find yourself in this situation, go around. You have a right to public water; just be courteous and set up without obstructing other anglers. Repeat, regardless of venue or technique, this one rule will keep you clean. The second rule is to move slowly and quietly when entering or leaving the occupied fishing water. Blasting under full power

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into the target area is a major dose of rudeness. There is no excuse other than a major emergency for blowing a “big motor” through water being covered by other casts. When leaving, open the gap under slow rpms or use an electric trolling motor. Better yet on a shallow flat, use wind drift or a push pole. How far to maintain a quiet profile depends on factors such as depth, water clarity, wind chop and the position of other anglers. As a rule, better to over-compensate than crank up too soon. A few extra minutes of “down time” are no big deal in the sum of a trip. Give bay waders a wide berth as you run a shoreline. There is no justification for a high-speed strafing. Nor is there decent cause for using a shallow-draft hull to cut between a wader and his bank. Afoot or afloat, a well-meaning angler can, through inexperience, encroach on “taken” water. Sincere apologies may smooth flared hackles but know that you have burned somebody. To avoid careless bumbling, don’t rush into an unsure situation. Take a few moments to study the dynamics before closing the gap. For example, check the wind and current and note the direction other boats are drifting or the angle they are riding at anchor. When anchoring, pick a suitable opening, ease up-current, and slip the anchor. Use a proper length of chain and a long line and drift back into position. If you are on the windward side of a jetty, or approaching a cluster of anchored boats on a reef, keep the motor idling in neutral until the anchor takes a solid bite. Mutinous anchors and balky motors have created all sorts of impromptu boarding parties. A courtesy exists among waders in the surf or along an open bayshore. The anglers usually form a line in thigh- to-waist-deep water and angle with the wind for easy casting. If you decide to join, note the direction of movement and wade to the rear of the procession. Or move far enough downwind to reach new water well beyond reach of F i s h

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advancing casts. It is a gross affront, a major breech, to jam right in front of the lead wader. Give him the space he rightly deserves. Of course, once a line is established, some waders may move faster than others. The plugger chunking a spoon usually shuffles at a quicker pace than the live-shrimp specialist using a popping cork. Or, a tackle malfunction might temporarily halt a wader. Moving around a slower or stalled wader is acceptable—assuming the move is done with courtesy and respect. Announce your intentions and wade inshore to go around. Pass promptly but softly and do not plow through the water he is covering with his casts. And quit fishing. Shuffle the length of a legitimate cast downwind before cocking your reel. This is not the freeway and you are not trying to whip into the first opening ahead of his horn. The third rule of angling etiquette is this: Strangers catching fish do not need help. The temptation to press tight to bent rods can be great but those guys—not you—found the fish. Crashing the party is unacceptable. The most awful offense is to plow in and foul the line of someone already playing a fish. Especially a really big trout. Oh, boy—not good. If you’re old and gray, you might get by with just a severe cussing. If you’re young and arrogant, you might have to settle it on the beach. And the guy you screwed up may have several indignant partners. Afoot or afloat, maintain a respectful distance from bent rods. Maybe the action will drift your way. Or, better yet, they might appreciate your restraint and wave you in. This can happen. A kindred spirit does exist. And there is a final maxim: If all anglers abide by the first three rules, the water somehow becomes a lot less crowded.

Contact Joe Doggettl at JDoggett@fishgame.com

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6/6/13 9:38 AM


Pike on the Edge by Doug Pike | TF&G Senior Contributing Editor

Evolution of Fishing

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ishing is easy. Too easy. If you’re not getting bites, it’s your own fault. Growing up, I heard regularly (and occasionally wrote, despite the cliché) that 90 percent of the fish were caught by 10 percent of the fishermen. There was relatively little pressure on the resources then, freshwater and saltwater, and nature did a pretty good job of replacing what the 10 percent dragged home on their long, heavy stringers. Few people threw perfectly good fish back into the water, and guys who caught a “good mess” stopped at three or four places on their way home to show off the catch. Still, the average recreational fisherman didn’t do especially well back then, and the reasons are obvious in hindsight. Most guys didn’t have quality gear; their lines broke, their hooks were dull, the hardware on their plugs was rusty, and they got most of their information about fishing from friends who didn’t know any more than they. Enthusiasm was through the roof, but that couldn’t trump marginally effective gear and a general lack of knowledge. The analogy I use often in reference to friends teaching friends anything comes from golf: If you’re learning the game from a buddy who’s a 20 handicap, you’re going to become really good at scoring in the 90s. And if you’re being taught to fish by a guy whose usual box holds one speckled trout or bass per trip – to this day about par for either the freshwater or saltwater course – you’ll get really good at catching one fish per day. Being an average or worse angler now is entirely unnecessary, of course, and here a few of the millions of reasons why. Start with tackle, rods in particular. Cane begot spring steel, steel begot fiberglass, and fiberglass begot graphite and all its hybrids.

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(There was that brief infatuation with brittle boron and pistol grips, but let’s not focus on negatives.) Fishing rods today are lighter, stronger and more sensitive, exponentially so in all categories, than anything available even 25 years ago. That’s like going from ox carts to sports cars in a quarter century, and the industry now offers rod actions specific to lures and techniques. Not long ago, the average, avid fisherman had his light rod and his heavy rod, or maybe a short one and a long one. The rest had one, and they probably bought it at Sears. Reels also have evolved at an astonishing pace and with equal specialization, paralleling rods down that “lighter and stronger” road. Bearings are slicker, gear ratios are whatever you want them to be, and maintenance (thank goodness for lazy anglers such as I) is minimal. Saltwater not long ago was to reels what a king cobra’s bite was to bad flute players. Corrosion settled inside and outside reels, and on the guides and reel seats of rods. Corrosion resistance today enables us to fish longer with minimal risk that salt and the crusty crystals it forms elsewhere won’t interfere with our fishing In old tackle boxes, you’d find a few each of the half-dozen lures most popular in a particular region. Now, specialty shops such as Fishing Tackle Unlimited in Houston stock thousands of lures in hundreds of colors. You can get most any of them in a floating, suspending or sinking model with or without rattles in a variety of pitches and tones. And right from their boxes, these lures’ hooks are sharp and durable. (Remember when the first thing you did with a new lure was sharpen the factory hooks?) Couple all that new gear to a boat loaded with electronics that weren’t even scribbles on napkins a generation ago. Fish-finders F i s h

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are cute, but it was and is GPS that did the most to turn fumblers and bumblers into cleaning-house studs. Landmark triangulation is nearly a lost art. I still have freshwater-guide friends who can settle over brush piles by lining up the brown chimney, the water tower and the fourth column on the bridge, but the rest of the fishing world lives one button-push away from returning to anywhere from anywhere. And more. The Internet, on any smart phone, is an instant source of current information on weather, tide, temperature and even hours-old fishing reports. You can get text reports, or you can look at photos posted moments ago by the guy two boats down the jetty from where you’re fishing. Even the little things are better today. Insect repellants. Foul-weather gear. Knots, although there’s nothing wrong with the old ones. All of which adds up to fewer and fewer excuses for not catching fish – of which there are plenty, by the way, thanks to improved biological data available to the folks who set limits, increased awareness of conservation among those who like to chase fish, and aggressive restocking programs. If you’re not catching fish these days, it’s your fault. Nobody gets a limit every time, but it sure seems like way more than 10 percent of the fishermen hauling boxes to the cleaning table these days. I don’t know how much our tackle and knowledge of sport fishing will improve in what’s left of my lifetime, but I can’t wait to find out.

Contact Doug Pike at DPike@fishgame.com Illustration: Bigstock

6/6/13 4:24 PM


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5/31/13 5:05 PM


Ted’s TexasWild by Ted Nugent | TF&G Editor-at-Large

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hunting buddy of mine doesn’t bowhunt; he likes his old .30-30 for his backstrap dreams. Another friend prefers his great grandpa’s buckhorn-sighted Kentucky flintlock squirrel rifle for aim small, miss small, deer during the muzzleloader season. A bunch of my U.S. Marine Corp sniper brothers live to kill elk at over 1000 yards each fall with their Barrett 50s. They’re something else. A classic bowyer artisan I know wouldn’t think of drawing a compound bow instead of his handmade yew wood English longbow and hunting with his hand-cut natural turkey feather-fletched cedar arrows. A whole bunch of die-hard deer hunters join me each year with their handguns to have pistolero fun, get backstraps, and share campfires. I’ve been hunting deer for more than 60 years. I’ve seen it all, done it all, enjoyed it all, and shared it all. And it is all good. Being the omnivorous consumer of the written word on hunting, I try to read every publication that has anything to do with hunting in every imaginable way, shape, form, and methodology. I often come across letters to the editors in some of these publications (including this one) by certain weirdos that piss and moan about others’ choices of hunting styles and methods, and it never ceases to amaze and confuse me that such doofuses actually exist. Now I know there are all kinds of humans out there, and clearly the lunatic fringe has expanded to an alarming 20 |

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How could it possibly matter how our fellow hunters go about killing their legal allotment of game?

Stop Whining and Enjoy the Hunt

degree, as evidenced by some of the rotten people they have elected into government positions—starting with the most corrupt, power-abusing president, vice-president, attorney general, and secretary of state in recorded history—but I have always thought or at least hoped that my hunting brethren were more intelligent, educated, and smarter than those weirdos. Alas, ‘tis not so. Of the hundreds and hundreds of hunters I have shared campfires with each fall for many years, I am very happy to report I have never encountered such a narrow-minded individual. I must be lucky to attract the best of the best, and I am ever thankful for that.

We have surplus game. We need to kill that surplus game to eat each annual season of harvest in order to make room for next spring’s new population. How in God’s good name could it possibly matter to any thinking person how our fellow hunters go about killing their legal allotment of surplus game? I don’t get it, and I don’t want to get it. On all reasonable, logical, and intellectual levels, it is not to be gotten. If it is legal, have at it and enjoy your hunt. Nobody with a brain and a heart really gives a flying whit what you use or how you go about it, as long as it is legal and you do so safely and ethically. Would you please F i s h

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shut up and kill something already? Those of us who know better should make it a point in our lives and at our hunting camps to gently yet firmly explain to any such squawker that all the silly nonsensical complaining is really unnecessary and counterproductive, and quite honestly, a royal pain in the ass. We should all reach out and engage those that find fault with others’ choices to simmer down; think of fellow hunters as part of our special, loving hunting family of BloodBrothers; and salute and support everyone’s individual choice. Friendly encouragement to try different styles and equipment choices can bring increased joy and expanded opportunities to our friends, but if they choose to stick with their preferred hunting choices, so be it. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy. I’m actually convinced that the vast majority of whining letters are written by animal rights freaks falsely claiming to be hunters just to make us look stupid. It would be my strong suggestion that the editors of outdoor publications simply stop publishing those hateful, negative voices because they probably aren’t the hunters they claim to be, anyway. That’s what I believe. We should all maximize the good while fixing and upgrading the bad and the ugly for an overall better hunting imagery in the public’s eye. Pettiness and negativity are good for nothing, and eliminating such nonsense can only make our hunting image and world stronger. Kill your game the way you enjoy it the most and are most proficient. We can’t grill it ‘til we kill it, and the grill doesn’t care one bit how that shank got to the fire. Hunt more, have fun, and everybody shut up and kill something, please.

Contact Ted Nugent at TNugent@fishgame.com

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6/6/13 4:28 PM


Commentary by Kendal Hemphill | TF&G Political Commentator

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n an overnight backpacking trip when I was about 14, my dad and I happened upon a fellow standing knee-deep in a stream, whipping the longest fishing rod I had ever seen back and forth, a yellow line singing through the crisp mountain air in slow arcs before him, then behind, seemingly impervious to gravity. The man finally allowed the line to drop into an eddy fifty feet downstream, the tiny lure kissing the surface of the water with silent, gentle ripples. He allowed the bait to float a little, and then gently stripped line from a reel mounted behind the grip of his rod, and let the fly catch the gurgling current to snake farther down the waterway. We stood and watched for while from fifty yards away, my dad and I, under a dying sun that filtered lazily through pines and aspens, stippling the streambed with spots of gold like spilt coins. It was a scene from a storybook, a snapshot of serenity in an already calm world. It was a moment when time stopped, and there was no yesterday or tomorrow, there was only now, and now was all that mattered. It was one of those defining chunks of life that creep back as memories years later, when a child reaches up to be held, or a beloved dog leans against your leg in the backyard, and you suddenly remember other special moments that have made your life worth all the trouble and effort. It was, for me, an epiphany. I’d never seen anyone fly fishing before, so my dad explained the concept as well as he could. I decided right then I would have to try it, and though it was years later before I bought my first fly rod, my epiphany was not about fly fishing, or even fishing in genPhoto: Kendal Hemphill

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Fishing for Memories

eral, it was about me. I realized that being often outdoors, in the wild places, where the air was clear and clean and fresh was necessary for me. Another of those moments came recently on the Llano River in Mason County, and it, like the other so many years ago, also involved watching someone standing kneedeep in a stream, casting a fly rod. The sun was higher, the trees were shorter and more rounded, and my dad has been gone for more than a decade, but the moment was no less special, no less beautiful, no less defining.

Jocelynn Hemphill, flyfisher.

My wife, Jocelynn, and I spent a weekend at Rockport kayak fishing recently. Phil Stranahan, a Rockport local, took us out and, since the fish were being uncooperative, offered to teach Jocelynn to cast a fly rod. I had never tried to show her because we learned, soon after we were married, that trying to teach one another anything was likely to end in divorce. Husbands make lousy instructors. After half an hour, with Phil patiently coaching her, Jocelynn was casting impressively. She loves to fish and, after we got home, she decided she needed to spend T e x a S

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some time on the Llano practicing her casting. Not that my wife needs an excuse to be outdoors; she loves nature as much as I do. Not to be left out, I went along and stood on the bank and watched as my wife stood in the river and fished. She used a popper hand-tied by a friend, and as she whipped the rod forward and back, I remembered that day, almost forty years ago, that I stood on a different riverbank and watched a stranger cast. And the world went away for a while. It wasn’t long before Jocelynn caught her first fish ever on a fly rod, a largemouth bass just big enough to keep. She grinned and held the fish up and I took a grainy picture with my lousy cell phone camera, probably one of the most valuable images I’ll ever record. The trouble with Kodak moments is that we seldom seem to have a Kodak handy. Jocelynn insisted on removing the hook herself, reminding me of another special snapshot from the past. Our youngest son, Leret, was about 4 years old when he caught his first fish on a trip to a friend’s stock tank. He wouldn’t allow us to put it on a stringer, but stuck the small perch into the bib pocket of his overalls. We had to wait until he fell asleep in the pickup on the way home to retrieve it. With spouses, as with children, quality time is what we remember, and what makes our memories valuable to us. But quality time can’t be planned or forced, it happens at random on a schedule of its own. And without question, quality time always occurs somewhere in the midst of quantity time. Always. Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Spend time fishing with your family and you feed your soul for a lifetime.

Contact Kendal Hemphill at Khemphill@fishgame.com

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Photo credit

6/6/13 4:32 PM


Giant swimbaits sail like rockets and crash down

into lakes like mortar shells, but they have also made a huge splash in the bass fishing world. Few types of bait attract more giant fish than swimbaits. “Large swimbaits are definitely for big

mouth, a big bass can suck down amaz-

fish, not big numbers,” said Jay Yelas, a

ingly large prey. Some better Texas swim-

former Bassmaster Classic champion and

bait impoundments include Fork, Falcon,

FLW Angler of the Year who once called

Amistad, Toledo Bend, Sam Rayburn,

Tyler, Texas, home. “It’s probably the

O. H. Ivie, Caddo, Conroe and Choke

worst lure in my box for catching numbers

Canyon, but anglers could use them in any

of fish, but the best lure for quality bites.”

Lone Star waters.

Essentially large lures that mimic baitfish, some swimbaits come equipped with

“A swimbait is a big fish technique for

internal weights that produce enticing

sure,” advised Kevin VanDam, a four-time

wobbles. Some models slip onto hooks

Bassmaster Classic champion. “It’s not a

or jigheads, similar to soft-plastic trailers

numbers bait, but it works in any lake with

saltwater anglers used for decades. Some

big bass because it looks like a big forage

companies also make oversized hard baits

bait. With big swimbaits, anglers generally

that look so much like live bluegill, crappie,

target bass weighing at least three pounds.

shad, rainbow trout or tilapia that people

The first bass I caught with a swimbait

may want to toss them in the livewell.

weighed 9 pounds, 13 ounces. In really

Regardless of configuration, all swimbaits

clear water, fish might shy away from a

make undulating action that mimic natural

jerkbait or a spinnerbait. Swimbaits are so

baitfish and provoke reactive strikes.

natural looking that they don’t scare fish.”

“I like to fish a swimbait in really clear

Among the most versatile baits on the

water because it’s such a natural presenta-

market, swimbaits can attract fish from top

tion,” recommended James Niggemeyer, a

to bottom. Some anglers wake them just

professional bass angler from Van, Texas,

under the surface. Most people retrieve

who guides on Lake Fork (903-312-0780,

weighted swimbaits moderately fast, almost

www.JamesNiggemeyer.com). “Fish really

like crankbaits. The tail seductively wob-

need to see it. I sometimes rig it with a

bles back and forth like a live shad. Since

big single offset hook with weight on the

bass often follow swimbaits before striking

shank. That’s good bait for skipping under

and may suck them down as they sink like

docks.”

crippled baitfish, pause occasionally to let the lure sink several feet before resuming

With fat profiles, swimbaits work best

the retrieve.

in clear lakes with abundant hefty baitfish,

“I’ve seen how powerful swimbaits are as

such as gizzard shad, bluegills or tilapia,

a draw for bass,” VanDam recalled.

and many monster bass. With its giant

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“Many bass follow swimbaits because the action is so mesmerizing. The swimming action tails give it Kevin Vanconsiderable vibration. Dam caught When practicing for this bass tournaments, I find a lot with a of fish with swimbaits. jointed hard I fish a heavy swimplastic swimbait in deep water, like bait on Lake off points and humps. Amistad. I also fish it through standing timber, almost like slow rolling a spinnerbait. It draws bass out of thick cover. It looks like an easy tempting meal so bass come out to get it.” Off deeper points, humps or channel drops, let swimbaits flutter down to the bottom like dying shad. Then, crawl them back to the boat, moving them only fast enough to make the tails wiggle. Anglers can also “worm” baits over the bottom with the “pulland-pause” method. Let a bait hit bottom or the tops of submerged grass and pull it up several feet. Then, let it drop again, almost like working a Texas-rigged worm or jig. Swimbaits work exceptionally well during the An Alabama rig tipped pre-spawn, post-spawn with and in the fall when big swimbaits bass fatten up by devouris a deadly ing large protein-rich combination. baitfish. Sowbelly bass want to maximize their food intake while minimizing their energy consumption by grabbing easy meals like wounded shad without expending much effort. Bass don’t eat while spawning so they stage in slightly deeper water to gorge themselves before moving shallow. Spawning requires considerable energy, so bass need to replenish their stocks after leaving the nest. In the fall, they eat as many baitfish as they can before winter hits. “I really like fishing big swimbaits in the pre-spawn to catch bigger fish,” Niggemeyer explained. “In early spring, when bass are not quite on their beds, but moving in that direction, I throw a 4Swimbaits to 6-inch Strike King mimic Shadalicious around baitfish and secondary points. I catch a retrieve it slowly, but variety of keep it high in the species, water column where I including this can see it. It’s almost largemouth. like fishing a spinnerbait. In the summer, I like to use a swimbait with a 3/4-ounce jighead and slow roll it along the bottom.”

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Mike Iaconelli used this tilapiaimmitating swimbait successfully on a South Texas lake.

When fished with exposed treble hooks or jigheads, swimbaits can easily snag, although anglers run these baits parallel to weed beds, creek channels, riprap or other cover. A plastic or metal snag guard or a rubber band stretched between the hook shank and the barb might keep anglers from losing too many baits. For really thick cover, use no additional weight or perhaps just a single shank-weighted hook for extra casting range. Insert the hook point into the plastic like using a Texas rigged worm. When fished in this configuration, work the swimbait over the grass like a topwater bait. Occasionally, let it sink into grassy pockets like working a wacky worm.

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Combining swimbaits with a multiplelure device, such as an Alabama rig, makes a deadly combination. An Alabama rig consists of multiple wires attached to a single point so they spread out like an umbrella. When tipped with soft-plastic swimbaits, the rig resembles a school of shad. Sometimes, bass smash swimbaits. At other times, bigmouth monsters may simply inhale a morsel wiggling past its nose. Anglers might only feel a slight tap or heaviness. If anything feels unusual, set the hook immediately! A bit of heaviness on the line might lead to the bass of a lifetime.

Photos: John N. Felsher

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Story and Photos by Chester Moore

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Marcus Heflin caught this big gar in the surf last May while fishing for bull reds.

Photos: Chester Moore

5/31/13 10:03 AM


Lucas Moore with a big garfish caught behind a shrimp boat.

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The surf at McFaddin Beach is

known for producing monsters and no one is more accustomed to catching them than Marcus Heflin. The well-known surf fishing guru and founder of Christian Surf Fishing Adventures has encountered everything from giant stingrays to massive schools of bull redfish in the sandy green surf. Last May however he caught a monster of a different kind. “We had been catching bull redfish. In fact, we were catching many bull redfish and then I got a big surprise. I caught a five-foot alligator garfish,” Heflin said. Heflin had caught garfish just a couple of miles north of the Sabine Jetties but has never seen one in the surf. “It was super exciting but definitely a little mysterious.” T e x a S

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News of the catch brought to mind something from my youth. Out of the hundreds of outdoors magazines I bought at the thrift store in Orange as a kid by cashing in spare change every few months, only two I remember had mentions of gar. One was one of those classic, thickcovered fishing annuals. There was a feature on catching gar in Florida on artificial lures. The other was a Texas Parks & Wildlife magazine from the late 1970s that had a map of the best fishing spots at Sea Rim State Park (in the area Heflin was fishing). It mentioned good spots to fish in the marsh as well as in the surf and I vividly remember being surprised to see a couple of spots in the surf marked as garfish hotspots. According to Texas Parks & Wildlife Department (TPWD) officials, little is known about alligator gar movement and habitat use. In a 2008 TPWD assessment of the species, TPWD biologists noted some interesting things about gar in relation to coastal ecosystems. “Sakaris et al. (2003) conducted the first published telemetry study of alligator gar in the Mobile-Tensaw Delta, Alabama, and found the home ranges of alligator gar were 2.7-12.3 km. However, they observed individuals moving as much as 2.1 km in 1.25 hours, suggesting substantial movements can occur. It is likely that many coastal river populations of alligator gar use both freshwater and saltwater habitats (Goodyear 1967). In Texas, alligator gar are routinely captured in estuarine habitats…” That is actually quite the understatement as several coastal ecosystems contain strong 28 |

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gar populations, particular Sabine Lake and Trinity Bay. Frank Moore of Killer Instinct Outdoors said he grew up catching gar, “alongside redfish, flounder and trout” and that most of his best locations are in saltwater. “We fish up and down the Sabine and do some in the Trinity as well but I find strong gar numbers in saltwater and although we have never found them in the surf like Marcus Heflin has we have caught them during the summer in the channel just north of the Sabine Jetties when we were also catching sharks,” he said. Moore said his late father Jackie taught him everything he knew about garfishing and early on, he learned that these big fish lived in a variety of habitats. “We had family at Lake Livingston and knew that place had some big gar so they were a freshwater fish but they could also live in saltwater as well. We caught them in 40 feet of water around a port and in a shallow marshy area and everywhere in between.” Some wrongly claim coastal gar tend to be smaller than their freshwater only brethren are but that is not true. “I remember being a kid and was fishing from the bank in an area now known as the Lower Neches Wildlife Management Area. My Dad hung into an eight-foot plus gar. It was a monster and he lost it right at the bank. The crazy thing was and I will never forget this, the gar swam back right up to us, looked at us for a minute and then swam off. It was almost as if it wanted a piece of my Dad for hooking it in the first place. That really got me into garfishing,” Moore said. Moore’s partner Daniel Stark said a big F i s h

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Frank Moore found this gar fry along with hundreds more like it. Tiny gar are rarely seen by human eyes.

focus of their project this year is gar and they are seeing monsters fishing with big mullet and croaker. “Our rigs are nothing really fancy. We try to hit an area to target big fish and fish with big bait when we do.” Surprisingly Stark said some of the best fishing is behind shrimp boats culling in the Intracoastal Canal. “When they start culling in particular we see big gars schooling behind them. It’s nothing to see a dozen nice size gars including a few monsters rolling behind a shrimp boat feeding like you would see mackerel do offshore.” Moore said he and Stark use a combination of bottom rigs and floats. “Sometimes they want it on the bottom but other times they will not take anything unless it is under a cork. And for those who have never fished for gar a float is good because it helps you keep a good visual marker of what the fish is doing.” “Despite their size a gar will toy with bait for a long time. I have seen them mess with it for up to 20 minutes at a time and then decide to take it. The key is to be extremely patient and not set the hook until you feel as if the fish is going to pull you in with it. Their mouth is solid thick bone so set the hook hard and realize you could be in the battle of your life.” Little is known about coastal gar populations but in certain areas of Texas, they seem to be strong. With restrictive regulations in place they will probably stay that way and along coastal anglers to face a unique (and toothy) challenge if they so choose. “Be careful,” Stark said. “Catching big garfish can be addicting. You just might start looking at everything else as lesser when you hang into one of these beasts.”

Photo Chester Moore

6/10/13 11:14 AM


Texas Saltwater by Calixto Gonzales | TF&G Saltwater Editor

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he sportsman’s life can be a difficult one. Logistics can be our ruination. In order to practice our pastime the way we want and need to, we need to be properly outfitted with the best equipment we can afford. The problem is that the different pieces of equipment we desire can be spread out to the winds and a simple shopping trip can turn into a full-blown scavenger hunt. A reel may be at one store, and the sun-proof hat at another. Our favorite soft plastics may be at still a third location, or worse still not available in our area. The truth is hunters and fishermen don’t have the time or resources to gallivant all over Texas to properly equip a good expedition; not only that, sometimes, the cost from catalogs and specialty stores can be prohibitive. The solution to the issue is the phenomena known as the Outdoor Expo. The expo is a combination gun show, fishing show, and gun expo with a little extra all rolled into one big, multi-day event. Outdoor Expos usually held in a large building such as a civic or convention center, In short, everything that the ambitious outdoorsman could desire is housed under one roof. Many companies such as Siffy Push Poles, HunFishPro Gear (including Castaway Rods), Waterloo Rods, and Laguna Rods purchase booths and put up displays at these events to have a more direct contact with customers to answer product questions, listen to consumer suggestions, and meet people. Events such as the Texas Hunter and Sportsman’s Expo in McAllen in deep South Texas is also an opportunity for the vendors of products both esoteric and hard to come by to display their wares and grow their presence in the marketplace (in some cases, it is the only opportunity they may have). I have yet to meet an outdoorsman who doesn’t look forward to an outdoor expo

when it comes to their town or one nearby. The events usually sport full parking lots from the opening of the doors on the first day to the moment the doors close on the last day (this is especially true of events astutely scheduled during the summer months, as Chris Curl, owner/promoter of the Texas Hunter and Sportsman’s Expo did with his). It isn’t surprising, in fact, for patrons to visit the same event every day). The greatest asset of an expo is its sheer variety of merchandise and attractions. It is an understatement to say that there is something for everyone at one of these outdoors shows. A visit to the 2012 THSE found displays for tackle companies, hunting and fishing outfitters, knives, game and meat products, tackle shops, gunsmiths, knife-makers, jewelry, toys, farm equipment, storage sheds, trucks, boats, deer blinds, sunglasses, and on and on. There was a portable video arcade for young--and not so young--children who may have found the volume of goodies boring. The show took up the big room in the McAllen Convention Center, an additional smaller room, and the east parking lot. Among the myriad booths and displays you will usually find products that you may not otherwise find locally. Looking for an extra-long push pole? You got it? Do you prefer a Laguna rod? Yup. How about a special Outdoor-show only deal on that boat or pickup truck you’ve been eyeing all winter? I’m sure there are a couple of sales representatives hanging around those bright shiny vehicles and boats. Meeting members of the consuming public is especially important at these expos. Kelly Moore of n not Castaway Rods once told me that events such as the Texas Hunter and Sportsman’s Expo gives him the opportunity to meet the people who use Castaways and what they like and don’t like about their product. This sort of feedback is very valuable because it serves as an added scaffold in the framework of producing rods that consumers like and buy. Independent vendors and craftsmen make the bulk of their profits by literally wearing T e x a S

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out the tires on their trucks and trailers by driving from show to show and selling their products. These are men and women who aren’t able to market their wares in shops and stores or catalogs and rely on these expos and their salesmanship to make a living. Often their products are innovative and unique and actually the sort of product you look at and say, “Yeah! That’s pretty cool!” You won’t find them at your local big box store, but you will at an outdoor show. I would be remiss in not mentioning that these outdoors shows are important for organizations such as the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. The TPWD Enforcement Division takes a trailer to several of these shows to raise awareness of Operation Game Thief, and the results of poaching and law breaking. Hundreds of patrons stop every day at the trailer to see the mounts of record-class fish and wildlife that were taken illegally, as well as displays of illegal harvesting devices such as gillnets and snag lines. Usually the children ask questions about the fish and deer mounts, but there are always parents nearby listening and asking follow-up questions. Even a little knowledge helps raise awareness, and that can’t be bad. And finally, these expos are just plain fun and family friendly. For a nominal fee-usually between 10 and 15 dollars, you can go, walk around, whistle at all the cool stuff, and eat yourself into a proper insensibility. If you walk out with a new rod or knife, or even a boat or truck, well, so much the better, right? I guess I needn’t suggest you go to the next one near you. If you haven’t already gone, you’re thinking about it.

Contact Calixto Gonzales at CGonzalez@fishgame.com

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“Crawl?”

I stared at the cracked South Texas earth below my feet, then to the thick tangle of scrub walled before me before asking once more.

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“Crawl?” “Yes, crawl,” my hunting guide Pete Ray exclaimed, ignoring the apprehension in my question. “Crawl up the side of this sendero ‘till you can get a clear shot.” I put my Meopta 10 x 40 binoculars to my face and stared at the furry black spots darting in and out of the clearing slightly

Photo: Bigstock

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in North America The Javelina Makes Up for its Diminutive Stature with Attitude and a Mouthful of Ivory Daggers by gayne c. young more than 200 yards ahead of me. “There’s a good sized boar up there,” Pete continued. “Get on him. Go.” I lowered myself onto the talcum dry ground and began pulling myself forward. As I crawled I couldn’t help but think of the two five-foot rattlesnakes guide Joey Burleson had brought into the lodge the

night before. He had caught one of them crossing the same sendero I was now belly lurching upon. “Yeah, I’ve picked up two or three snakes out at the place you’ll be hunting tomorrow,” he had said. Snakes were only one of the many possible dangers I had to contend with at

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ground level. During my excruciating 20 minute stalk I endured swarms of sand fleas buzzing about my face, close encounters with spiders, and countless scratches and snags from low hanging mesquite thorns. By the time I reached my intended vantage point I was a sweaty mess of bites and cuts. Seventy-five yards before me a sounder

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of perhaps 15 javelinas fed on a large meandering of prickly pear cactus, the animal’s teeth chattering incessantly as they cut and chewed the younger, greener pads. Finally spotting the boar Pete recommended, I slowly moved for my rifle. A sudden gust of breeze alerted the Guide group to my presence and the sound Pete of grunting and teeth chattering Ray increased tenfold as the animals with a scattered into the brush for safety. javelina. I looked back to see Pete already ambling forward to meet me, a disappointed look on his face. “Was a hard stalk with the wind the way it was,” Pete offered. “We’ll get ‘em tomorrow though.” I nodded in agreement and followed Pete back to his truck for the long, dusty ride back to the lodge. Although most hunters associate the cover, jackrabbits stood like statues avoiding scrublands around Pearsall, Texas with tro- some unseen threat, and several does ambled phy whitetails I had come searching for jave- through feeding as they went. “A lot of activity down there,” Pete linas, North America’s smallest big game. Correctly identified as collared peccary, jave- whispered. I nodded before replying, “Yeah, a lot linas range from Central America to the arid Southwest of the United States. Javelinas of deer.” Pete turned toward me. “What deer?” are small animals, ranging in weight from As it turned out, Pete and I were glass25 to upward of 60 pounds and standing 20 to 24 inches tall at the shoulder. They ing two different openings. I was glassing a are covered with a thick, bristled hide that closer small section while Pete was watching was once commercially harvested for leather, a smaller opening in the scrub some hundred and fifty yards beyond. His was full of javepaint brushes, and shaving brushes. Owing much to their reputation are the linas, all taking their time eating cactus and peccaries’ set of dagger like tusks that connect in a scissor like fashion. Used in selfdefense if cornered or pushed, these tusks can slice open a dog or hunter in a matter of seconds. “They can be pretty nasty,” Pete reiterated later over dinner. “Of course I like them because they’re so hard to hunt. To truly hunt them on foot takes more than most hunters think, especially if they’ve been hunted before like this bunch has. Anybody can put corn out and wait but to really hunt them takes time.” The next morning found Pete and me sitting atop a small bluff glassing for sign of javelinas. Although it was April, the cactus flats below us were already shimmering in transparent waves of heat less than an hour after daybreak. With the threat of a noontime high in the mid-90s it seemed as though every animal except javelinas had come onto Javelina tusks are the flats for a quick bite to eat. Birds of all formidable weapons. colors darted in among the thick ground

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completely unaware of our presence. “Follow me,” Pete commanded. I did. Pete led me through a labyrinth of game trails, dry washes, and bald spots for what seemed like a lifetime. Gone were the ground fleas I had contended with yesterday. They had been replaced by a multitude of other hazards competing for my flesh at “crouch and stalk” level. Mesquite and huisache branches, their thorns like tiny razors, cut my head and neck, cobwebs clung to my face, and bees hidden among the flowering thorn bushes buzzed alarm at my coming too close. “Get up here,” Pete ordered with a powerful whisper. Through a tapestry of thorns and vines I maneuvered myself to just in front of Pete. “I want you to take that one,” Pete offered pointing to the largest in the bunch. I lifted my rifle to my shoulder and immediately found the javelina he was referring to in my Burris scope. He was a nice boar with gleaming white tusks, thick pelage, and a heavy body. I eased my finger onto the trigger of my Remington 700 and slowly exhaled. Through my scope I saw a repeat from the day before. Somehow the animals sensed us and acted accordingly. The group ran in tight circles, their teeth chattering and grunting in alarm. The big male raised the Mohawk-like hair on the back of his head and neck in defiance and ran. I followed him in my scope and squeezed. Immediately the Remington .270 Safari Grade bullet howled through the air, impacting the animal just behind the shoulder blade with a heavy thud. The boar ran in a tight circle before dropping dead onto the ground below him. Pete immediately reached for my hand. “See I told ya’ hunting them the right way could be fun!” He exclaimed. I agreed and immediately began talking about looking for another javelina that afternoon. Contact the author through his website at www.GayneCYoung.com Contact oufitter Pete Ray at www.HuntInfo.com/hog-hunting-texas

Photos: Gayne C. Young

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5/31/13 10:36 AM


Texas Department of Defense

| Self Defense | | Concealed Carry | | Tactical | by Steve LaMascus & Dustin Ellermann

What is Stopping Power?

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ny time there is a discussion on concealed carry weapons there is a lot of talk about stopping power. We throw this term around as though it was some kind of scientific term with a formula into which you can just plug figures like velocity and bullet weight and get the answer. Sadly that is not true. In fact, the actual stopping power of any round is so elusive that I have over the course of several decades decided that it is all but indefinable. Generally speaking, if you increase the diameter and weight of a bullet, or the velocity at which it is fired, you increase its stopping power. However, there are so many instances of people shot with big, fast bullets continuing on that it makes you stop and wonder. I have read of instances of people with horrendous wounds carrying on for amazing periods of time without even knowing that they were wounded. On the other hand I know of instances where a person was shot in a non-vital location that simply turned toes up and died. What are the reasons? Is there such a thing as stopping power and can we define it? The reasons one person is instantly stopped by a specific round while another simply ignores it are extremely difficult to uncover. At least part of the reason, and I think a huge part, is the mental mood of the person at the time he is shot. A person who is angry through and through is darned hard 34 |

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to stop with anything short of a howitzer. A person who is afraid of guns and believes all the TV and movie idiocy of people getting knocked 50 feet with a handgun may drop at a shot from a relatively mild caliber. A person who has determined beforehand that he is not going to be stopped is going to be difficult to stop. War is a place where these things show up often. Like the story of the soldier sent for help who arrives at the HQ, delivers his desperate message, then falls over from loss of blood, because he had stepped on a landmine en route and had been running, unaware, on the bloody stump of one leg after his foot was blown off. Drugs can also make a huge difference in the way a person reacts to receiving a bullet. I have personally dealt with people high on drugs and can tell you that in certain instances they are all but impervious to pain. Sometimes a person will be stopped instantly when shot by a .32 auto, and the next person might take several rounds from a .45 ACP to put down. However, there is a thin line of fact that threads its way through all this uncertainty.

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Generally speaking, when handguns are the subject, the larger the caliber, the more probable it is that the person shot will be put down with one shot. For instance, the probability is that a person is more likely to be stopped instantly when shot with a .45 than with a .32. The sad thing is that we can’t depend on it. Police departments realize this and use the most powerful calibers their officers can handle well, and then they teach the ubiquitous “double tap.” The U. S. Border Patrol, during my active duty days, taught the tactic of firing two shots center mass each time the gun was drawn. I am told that the U.S. Marshals Service teaches their officers to fire two shots to the chest and then one to the head, just in case the person is wearing a ballistic vest. As a civilian you can practice anything you want, but I strongly suggest that you adopt one of the above. I also suggest, and will continue to do so as often as possible, that you get some real training, from a good training facility that teaches realistic shooting and tactics. Good shooting is fine, but not

very useful without good tactics. Tactics are useful, but totally useless without the ability to hit what you shoot at. I can only tell you that you should carry a gun firing the most powerful cartridge that you can shoot well and that can be concealed in the normal course of your day. Then be prepared to fire as many shots as may be required. If two take care of the matter, fine. If it takes more than two, be prepared to give them to him. Like the prophet said, “He may kill me with my own gun, but he will have to beat me to death with it, ‘cause it’ll be empty when he gets it.” Do not fire one shot and then lower your gun to admire your handiwork. Use a powerful weapon and then keep shooting until he goes down. Do not count on the “stopping power” of your handgun; it may not work as advertised. —Steve LaMascus

6/10/13 11:36 AM


Texas Department of Defense

The .300 AAC Blackout Cartridge

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neck, size to .30 caliber, trim to 1.368” and stuff a .30 caliber bullet into it. The design uses the same plentiful AR-15 .223 magazines, gas system, bolt carrier group, upper and lower receiver. The only modification needed for your existing rifle is a new barrel. Of course the AK47/SKS 7.62x39mm cartridge is a .30 caliber carbine, but once most shooters fire an AR-15, they typically enjoy the low recoil, ergonomics, lightweight and adaptability over the heavy, wooden, piston driven Russian counterpart. Also, it is difficult to find an AK47 built to the

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ver since the introduction of the 5.56x45 cartridge for the M16 rifle in 1963 the argument has ensued over the effectiveness of the high velocity “poodle shooter” .22 caliber bullet compared to the previous .308 calibers. On the other hand there is no denying the AR-15 style rifle as being the most popular defensive carbine in the US. There have been several wildcats through the years closing the gap between the .223 native AR-15 and the .308 AR-10, but none of them have become mainstream. The .300

to the 7.62x39 yielding 1,529 with a 123 grain bullet at 2,400 fps. If you are familiar with the past wildcat .300 Whisper the .300 Blackout isn’t too different, in fact Whisper cartridges can be fired in a Blackout chamber, but not vice versa. The real advantage of the .300 Blackout over these past wildcats is that it was approved by SAAMI as a standard cartridge which now allows for commercial manufacturers to offer a variety of loads. Besides the AR15 compatibility and .30 caliber firepower the next great advantage is found in the cycling of subsonic ammunition. If you have shot with a suppressor you have realized that they aren’t near as quiet as Hollywood makes them out to be if you are shooting standard velocity rounds that break the sound barrier. Blackout can be loaded with bullets from 110 grains up to 240 grains. The rounds over 200 grains are

223 Remington and .300 AAC Blackout Cartridges in Magpul P-Mags. From left to right: Black Hills 55 grain .223, HSM 110 grain V-Max, Atlanta Arms 125 grain Nosler Ballistic Tip, HSM 208 grain A-Max subsonic, HSM 220 grain Sierra subsonic.

AAC Blackout might become the best hybrid to bridge the gap for a .30 caliber carbine in an AR-15 chassis. The simple explanation of the .300 Blackout (7.62x35mm) cartridge is to take a .223 Remington casing, cut it off below the 36 |

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USA made quality specifications we have available for AR-15s. The power factor of the .300 Blackout is only slightly less of the 7.62x39mm with the Blackout putting forth 1,344 foot pounds of energy with a 115 grain bullet flying at 2,295 fps as compared F i s h

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loaded to travel under 1,050 FPS in order to fly quietly without a ballistic crack. With a suppressor in place it lends the Blackout to sound like a pellet rifle. Of course since they are only traveling around 1,000 FPS they drop quickly, but silently slamming steel at Photo credit

6/10/13 11:37 AM


A Lesson in Secure Carry

through the security check area with the gun—a Cobra .380—in his back pocket. He said he thought the gun fell out of his pocket because the ride was “extremely bumpy.”

In May, a grandmother found a loaded handgun on the seat of a ride at Disney World’s Animal Kingdom in Florida. Angelo Lista told deputies he had arrived earlier with his family and gone

Upon realizing the gun was missing, he went back to the ride area trying to locate it. Lista was asked to leave the property for the rest of the day, and the gun was confiscated “for safe keeping.” He was told he could pick it up from the sheriff’s office evidence department. The sheriff’s office said the case was closed.

100 yards with a cycling semi-automatic has never been so much fun. At this speed most bullets won’t fragment or expand, but for some covert tactical encounters this would be hard to beat. Usually new non-mil-spec calibers don’t appeal to me. But being a suppressor guy as well as a reloader this seems like a match made in ammunition heaven. .223 casings

are plentiful, and lightweight 30 caliber bullets are easy to find as well. The only reliable cycling subsonic powder I’ve found to use is the suggested AA1680 which seems hard to find, but I’ve had good luck with all the standard velocity rounds. In my wooded East Texas terrain most whitetails are killed less than 100 yards I plan to build a short-barreled AR pistol in 300 Blackout

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Not quite. Lista made the classic concealed-carry mistake of not ensuring the firearm was secure. When a CHL holder loses his firearm, bad things can happen—from a child or “bad guy” finding the gun to simply making carriers look like idiots. Always carry in a secure holster that will retain the firearm even when running, jumping, turning cartwheels—or on a “bumpy ride.” —Don Zaidle

for optimized lightweight maneuverability. —Dustin Ellermann

Correction

In the June issue, the headline in Dustin’s article on the Springfield XDS inadvertently labeled the pistol as the “Springfield XDX.” This error occurred in production and was not the fault of the author.

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6/3/13 10:33 AM


PART THREE IN A SERIES BY DUSTIN ELLERMANN

Since the AR-15 is one of the

most easily customizable rifle platforms, it is very tempting to over accessorize it until it becomes heavy and cumbersome. Sometimes it’s best to get back to basics and use only what is needed and not everything that is desired. T e x a S

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The Rock River Arms Tactical Entry LAR-15 with 5.11 VTAC Sling and Elzetta ZFH1500 Mount and Light.

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So if you are either new to your AR15 or might have gone overboard in your current load out, this guide is for you. A basic model AR15 is the best place to start. Since the late 1950s we have seen several variations since the original AR design, and today we have more options than ever. But if you choose a model with a standard front sight gas block and removable carry handle or rear sight you are good to go. The older original ARs with the permanent carry handle make it difficult to mount optics so it’s best to have a flattop upper. For this article we used a Rock River Arms LAR-15 Entry Tactical. It’s a great base model that includes the RRA 2 stage trigger, Hogue grip, collapsible stock,

16-inch barrel and side mount sling swivel. For the most part this will be your most popular AR15 configuration that you would find in most sporting good stores for under $1,000. Now if you just plan on keeping this rifle in a gun case for occasional plinking all you’ll need to do is oil the bolt a little and zero the sights and you are good to go. But if you plan on being a responsible armed citizen, I recommend acquiring a few minimum accessories to stand at the ready. I also recommend some solid defensive tactical training as well, but we will cover that at a later date. Magazines Lots and lots of magazines. OK, maybe

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The RRA LAR-15 was definitely in the realm of practical defensive accuracy. This 75 yard group was shot with .223 55 grain Black Hills traveling right under 3,000 fps. Seventy-five yards is a good practical defensive range.

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you don’t need too many, but whenever the gun grabbers start beating their war drums you will have regretted not buying all you could when you could. But the minimum recommendation is to have at least six standard capacity magazines for every semi-automatic pistol and rifle you own. And by “standard capacity” I mean 30 rounds of .223 for your standard AR15. The term “high capacity” is an anti-gunner term probably because it is difficult for them to count past ten. But lets face it, without a dependable, quality magazine your AR15 is nothing more than a difficult to load single shot rifle. If you rifle malfunctions, most likely it is the magazine’s fault. Mark that mag until you diagnose the exact issue and just use it for range time and malfunction training. let there be Light The next “must have” accessory for your standard defensive AR15 is a flashlight and mount. There are many good ones on the market so it’s difficult to just name one brand. Look into Streamlight, Insight, Surefire and Elzetta. The “You get what you pay for” rule still rings true. If you buy the $30 value package with a multifunction Chinese made LED light complete with “universal barrel clamp mount” don’t be surprised when it falls apart under the recoil of your rifle. There are different light functions that are useful such as low beam, high intensity, and strobe. For this RRA build we mounted an Elzetta M60 two-cell light in an Elzetta ZFH1500 polymer mount. If you read the blogs at www.fishgame.com you will see the video where we torture tested the Elzetta by dropping it out of a helicopter Photos: Dustin Ellermann

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from 300 feet on the concrete. It broke the concrete, scratched the finish on the flashlight, and damaged the batteries inside. But once the batteries were swapped out the light never missed a beat. That’s durability. And that’s the type of dependability you want on a rifle that could very well save your life. The ZFH1500 mount is also durable, easy to mount without any fancy picatinny rails, lightweight, and mounts at the perfect 6’oclock position to the bore. The under barrel mount eliminates any cast off of the light onto the rifle that would affect the shooters night vision. The Elzetta mount also comes with different sized inserts to accommodate more light sizes, and even a QD side sling mount. And another perk is that the existing sling swivel becomes a lever to activate the tail cap button on your light making it easier to use. Since evil loves darkness there is a good chance you would have to defend yourself in low light situations, so make a mounted light on your rifle a priority.

and useful in shooting situations by cinching down for a more stable platform. On a final note I would usually recommend upgrading a mil-spec trigger to something with a good bit less creep and mush. But in the case of the RRA LAR-15 the trigger was great out of the box. In fact, Rock River Arms sells their crisp two-stage trigger so you can upgrade it yourself. It measured at two pounds for the first stage take-up with a solid crisp 5.5 pound break. Not as light as you would want for target

shooting but perfect for the defensive AR15. So those are the most practical recommended AR15 modifications. After these steps the only thing worth looking into would be a quality optic, but we can save that for a later article when we add on the forward grips, lasers, night vision, magazine couplers and grenade launchers.

Sling Shot The final mandatory accessory for your AR is a sling. You can’t expect to carry it full time in your hands even though it may come with a carry handle. The 50-year-old design has sling mounts on the underside, which works fine if you are carrying it like a hunting rifle over your shoulder. But that type of sling style is more suitable for hiking, not defense. The “two point” sling is the most common way to carry and one of the most popular slings has become the 5.11 VTAC 2 point. It comes in padded or standard strap, with loops and buckles to mount anywhere along with a steel cinch buckle for easy “on the go” adjustments. For this type of carry the shooter will usually drape the rifle across their chest in the ready position, muzzle pointing down on their support side, with the stock up on the strong side ready to fire with the sling running over the right shoulder and diagonal across to the left side of his lower back to the forward hand guard on the barrel. To keep the rifle from flipping over the sling is mounted on the 11-12 o’clock position for right-handed shooters. On collapsible stocks such as this RRA LAR-15 the rear sling was woven through the stock sling slot. The forward part of the sling could have been perfectly mounted on the RRA provided side mount but it needed to be removed for the flashlight but it was easily around the forward hand guard itself. This sling system is practical, comfortable,

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Texas Bow Hunting by Lou Marullo | TF&G Bowhunting Editor

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ow. Would you look at the calendar? It is almost hunting season again and there is so much to do to prepare for another great season. Time to get crackin. Put tree stands on the top of your list. If you followed my advice in earlier columns, then your stands are safely stowed away in your garage or shed someplace. If not, then a trip in the deer woods is in order. Carefully inspect your tree stands. Are there any loose bolts that need to be tightened? How about the straps that lock the stand in place? Are they still in good shape? The weather has a nasty way of bringing on some wear and tear long before you should need it. Were there any creaks or other noises that your stand made with every movement you made? It is a good time to stock up on some nonscented silicone spray or some other form of lubricant. Take the time to spray down any metal parts. It is a good practice to get into. Not only will it help protect the metal from the elements, but it will also help eliminate any of those “noises” I just spoke of. Here is another helpful hint. I use this “maintenance” time to gather some extra hardware I might need. More than once I have found myself in my tree stand and realize that a nut or bolt had come loose and disappeared in the forest floor. I usually make sure I duct tape some extra nuts, bolts, and wing nuts somewhere on my stand. Then, if I need them, they are readily available. If you left your stand on your lease for the year, then now is the time to check it out. Bring a few extra straps with you just in case. You should have loosened the strap on the tree just a bit at the end of last season. It is just a safe practice to get into. Inspect the strap carefully before you tighten it up around the tree and if needed, just replace it. Better to be safe than sorry. 42 |

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Put tree stands on the top of your list.

Times A-Wastin’

It’s time to check out your bow. Are there any loose parts? Does it seem louder than usual whenever you release an arrow? I have to tell you that my eyes were much better when I wore a younger man’s clothes. With all the small parts such as bushings, tiny screws and lock washers along with tons of other small things I have never seen before…it is wise to just bring your bow to a professional, reputable bow shop and let the guys that know what to look for do a proper inspection. I hate to admit this, but a few years ago while I was practicing my shooting skills, I found that all of a sudden, I could not group my arrows. I looked long and hard at

my bow and could find nothing wrong. My errant shooting was soon chalked up to the sun in my eyes or my shoes were untied or anything else I could muster up.. Finally, I agreed to have a bow shop give it a once over and to my amazement, I had been missing one of the bushings on the upper limb of my bow. I had no idea when that went missing, but I was glad to have the professional fix the problem. He even went a little further to say that if my arrows are not grouping now, then it is my lousy shooting skills that is the cause of the problem. Oh well, I still go to him anyway...*!#@%. I digress. You have heard me say many times that it is important to practice with the equipment you plan on hunting with. This also includes your arrows. You may think that they are all the same but I disagree. I know plenty of guys that label their arrows by number to remind them to use the number one arrow F i s h

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first. It just always seems to fly better than the others. Strange, I will agree, but it is true. Although with today’s technological advances, you would think that all arrows are uniform in weight and circumference, but there is a slight variance and for some, it makes a huge difference when it comes to an accurate shot. A good friend of mine wanted to go to a 3-D course just before opening day last year. I thought it was a great idea as I am of the belief that you can never have enough practice time in. We met at the agreed site and my friend then told me he had to buy new arrows the night before. Apparently, he had either misplaced his stash of arrows, or lost them in the woods someplace after some bad shooting. He was surprised to see that his arrows did not fly perfect, and I was surprised to find out that this was his first day out to practice. I plan on talking about this much more next month, but I cannot say it enough. In this sport, as in any sport you try to achieve excellence (or at least be pretty good); you need to put in some practice time and lots of it. I am not sure if it was his new arrows, or his lack of practice that caused him to shoot so poorly. I suspect it was a combination of both. You should also take this time to locate all of your accessories that you like to have with you while you are bow hunting. A release and a spare release, range finder (with fresh batteries), a flashlight, a sharp knife, any calls you might use and just about any other thing you can think of. Now is the time to get that all together. Hunting season is fast approaching. There is little time to prepare and with everything else you deal with on a day to day basis, the sooner you get your hunting gear ready to go, the better. Have fun and hunt safe out there.

Contact Lou Marullo at LMarullo@fishgame.com

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Hunt Texas by Bob Hood | TF&G Hunting Editor

Just Call Me a Hunter

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ometimes it amazes me how some people can say they do not think there is a controversy about an issue yet expound on it to make it a controversial issue. A case in point involves crossbows vs. “bows,” the latter being a term some people have used to describe their difference between the two. In a Letter to the Editor published in last May’s edition of Texas Fish & Game written by a Katy, Tex., “bowhunter,” the writer expressed his views that “A crossbow is a crossbow and a bow is a bow,” further stating “Hunting with a crossbow is crossbow hunting. Hunting with a bow is bow hunting.” The writer also said he has no problem with “crossbow hunting” but he does have a problem with calling it “bowhunting,” and that it takes considerably more skill to shoot a deer with a bow because crossbows allow you to draw in advance, not in the animal’s presence, which is a far greater advantage than compound bows have over longbows and recurves. OK, let’s take a little history lesson. There once was a time when true “bow hunters” used only a tree limb for the “bow” and sinew or some other type of fiber for a “string” and a shaven limb with its end sharpened or equipped with a sharpened rock for a broadhead with which to hunt., basically a long bow. Now there was a true “bowhunter.” Later, man invented other types of “bows,” including the crossbow, recurve bow, and more recently the compound bow. And, even more recent than the compound bows, came a wide assortment of “accessories” including mechanical bowPhoto: Bigstock

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string releases, string silencers, stabilizers, lighted sights, adjustable string pull weights, range-finders and much more _ all at the same time manufacturers were continuing to create improved telescopic sights, advanced semiautomatic, bolt-action and single-shot rifles plus a host of other hunting advantages for conventional rifle, handgun and shotgun hunters as well as blackpowder and muzzleloader hunters. I won’t go into the host of other “advantages” we all have been presented, including trail cameras that send the images to your iPhone, laptop or other electronic device, nor the camouflage clothing, human scent blockers, wildlife feeders, deer food plot mixtures, and on and on. So let’s get back to the basics of crossbows vs. so-called “bows.” Or, to put it in another prospective, “horizontal bows” vs. “vertical bows.” Many of today’s hunters born after about 1970 probably don’t know anything about the controversy that stirred about that time between longbow and recurved bow hunters vs. the recently-invented compound bow users. Yes, there were some who believed hunters who used compound bows, invented by Hollis Wilbur Allen of Missouri in the 1960s, were not true “bow hunters” and even called for them not being allowed in many archery shooting contests.” They had realized they couldn’t bring an outright ban on Allen’s compound bows for which he was granted a patent in 1969, for hunting but they could regulate them in archery shooting contests. Vertical vs. horizontal? How about the Draw-Loc invented in the 1990s or the copy-cat Lock-a-Draw available today and made especially for compound bow users. Both the Draw-Loc and Lock-a-Draw lock the string in a shooting position, just as does the crossbow, so the string is in full drawn position and ready for an arrow release at any time and long before a deer or other T e x a S

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animal is present? So, now we have some “bowhunters” who say they have no problems with crossbows being used for hunting but they do have a

problem with crossbow hunters being called “bow hunters.” Hawg wash! A person who hunts with a compound bow, recurve bow, long bow or a piece of tree for a limb, sinew for a string, and a shaven limb with bird feathers for fletching and a rock for a broadhead-equipped arrow is no more of a “bowhunter” than someone using a crossbow. I’m sure crossbow hunters who were using crossbows as early as the fourth century BC might argue the point about who is a true “bowhunter” with those today who are using a compound bow inspired by Hollis Allen’s invention in the 1960s, or who use long bows or recurved bows, for that matter. If you want to call yourself a “bowhunter” because you use a compound bow that was invented only 47 years ago and which is continuing to be improved with all sorts of new whistles and horns, that’s fine with me. Just don’t tell me that I’m not a “bowhunter” because I prefer to use a crossbow inspired by its original design somewhere around the fourth century BC but improved upon with modern designs and material, just as has the longbow, recurved bow and compound bow. We all are hunters. I don’t think there needs to be a distinction between one or another, especially if the purpose is to separate us from one another. Don’t call me a crossbow hunter, a bow hunter, a rifle hunter, a shotgun hunter, a handgun hunter, or a muzzleloader hunter. I hunt with them all. Just call me a hunter. Contact Bob Hood at BHood@fishgame.com G a m e ®

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TRUE GREEN Study Answers Loggerhead Riddle

photo: NOAA

Texas Shark Fin Bill Dies in Senate A bill to criminalize Texas fishermen who possess or sell a shark fin died in the senate in the most recent legislative session. Sponsored by Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, D-McAllen, House Bill 852 was approved by the Texas House but was taken down after being introduced in the Senate. Sen. Troy Fraser, R-Horseshoe Bay, questioned Hinojosa on the bill, saying it would unfairly penalize Texas anglers. —Staff Report «TG

More Austin Carp The City of Austin released 9000 more sterile Asian grass carp off the Mary Quinlan Park dock on May 2. About 17,000 fish were stocked in Lake Austin in 2012, for a stocking rate of 50 fish per acre of

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hydrilla, Gilroy said. However, by February of 2013, the hydrilla level in the lake had increased, prompting the additional carp release that is expected to bring the stocking rate up by 10 percent, to 55.5 fish per acre of hydrilla. —Staff Report «TG F i s h

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Why do loggerhead sea turtles migrate thousands of miles to their birthplace to reproduce after roughly 25 years? Evolutionary biologists from GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel think it helps with parasite immunity, which gives offspring a better chance for survival.

The study found that a certain region in the turtle’s genome is responsible for fighting parasites and diseases—the “major histocompatibility complex”—and the genes differ between groups of turtles that were spawned in different regions. Since the genes and the pathogens they fight are locale-specific, the immunity would not work if the turtles spawned somewhere else. —Staff Report «TG photo: Hemholtz Centre for ocean research

6/3/13 9:58 AM


TRUE GREEN photo: TPWD

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will be using three zebra mussel-sniffing K-9 teams for the first time this year to help combat the spread of zebra mussels and other aquatic invasive species (AIS). Minnesota is the second state in the country to use trained dogs to prevent the spread of AIS. They will be used throughout the state during the open water season. Minnesota conservation officers traveled to California to learn about the country’s first program successfully utilizing mussel trained K-9s to prevent the spread of AIS.

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Dogs Used for Mussel Detection

Even adult zebra mussels are hard to detect because of their small size.

Because even adult zebra mussels are quite small—and the larvae almost microscopic—a human inspector can easily overlook them attached to a boat hull or engine,

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but a trained dog can locate even one of the tiny invaders. —Staff Report «TG

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TRUE GREEN CONTINUED...

DU Protects Marsh with Barrier Restoration

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Parks and Wildlife Department, completed construction of nearly 20,000 linear feet of berm along a portion of the McFad-

—Staff Report «TG

McFaddin National Wildlife Refuge “beach ridge.”

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The McFaddin National Wildlife Refuge “beach ridge” provides an important saltwater barrier between the Gulf of Mexico and nearly 40,000 acres of brackish marsh on the upper Texas Coast. Devastated by Hurricane Ike in 2008, the beach ridge has eroded such that saltwater intrusion into the marsh occurs on a regular basis during heavy south winds and high tides. This influx of saltwater is damaging to the brackish marsh and reduces its value to waterfowl and other wetland wildlife. Ducks Unlimited, working with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Texas

din NWR. The project will reduce the frequent saltwater intrusion, thus enabling the marsh to remain “fresher” for longer periods and provide better waterfowl habitat. Funds for the project were from federal damage assessment associated with Hurricanes Rita and Ike.

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“ hey say everything is bigger in Texas,” but when it comes to world record largemouth bass, that’s not necessarily true – yet! On Jan. 24, 1992, Barry St. Clair set the Texas standard for largemouth bass with an 18.18-pound lunker he pulled from Lake Fork. Although a state record, St. Clair’s fish fell well short of the 22-pound, 4-ounce Georgia behemoth George Perry caught in 1932. Perry sat alone atop the bass record pyramid until July 2, 2009, when Manabu Kurita hauled a 22-pound, 5-ounce monster from Lake Biwa in Japan. Although Kurita’s 29.4-inch giant bested Perry’s bass by an ounce, the two anglers share the all-tackle world record title because International Game Fish Association rules stipulate that any fish weighing less than 25 pounds must beat an existing record by at least two ounces. If officials with the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department have their way, the undisputed world record will return to the United States in a few years. In 1999, even before Kurita made his spectacular catch, Texas biologists began working on Operation World Record, which grew out of the Texas ShareLunker program. “Operation World Record is an attempt to produce the next world record largemouth bass through a program of selective breeding using lunkers with pure Florida largemouth genes,” explained Allen Forshage, director of the TP&WD Texas Freshwater Fishing Center in Athens. “We started strategic planning for the Texas ShareLunker Program in 1999, but the selective breeding program didn’t really get off the ground until about 2005.” Under the Toyota ShareLunker Program, anyone fishing Texas waters between Oct. 1 and April 30 each year who legally catches a bass weighing 13 pounds or more can donate that fish to the state for the breeding program. To donate a fish, call 1-888-784-0600 at any time. Within 12 hours, a TP&WD representative will come to take possession of the fish and bring it to a hatchery for breeding. The angler can release the fish after spawning season or donate the fish permanently to the state. Either way, the angler receives a fiberglass replica of the bass, ShareLunker clothing and recognition. The 48 |

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season also receives a lifetime Texas fishing license among other prizes. Texas biologists established three goals for the program: 1. Produce more and bigger fish in Texas hatcheries so anglers could catch more eight-pound or larger bass. 2. Incorporate more ShareLunker offspring into the hatchery brood stock for breeding. 3. Start a selective breeding program using female ShareLunkers and male offspring of ShareLunkers to increase the growth and maximum size of bass produced in Texas. “Our ultimate goal is to make fishing in Texas the best it can be and we’re working toward that goal,” Forshage explained. “When we get lunkers, we always try to spawn them. With the selective breeding program, we not

only use those pure Florida bass female lunkers, but some males that were offspring of lunkers that were in our system earlier.” When a lunker comes into the system, biologists take DNA samples and scan it for special tags. If they don’t detect a tag, hatchery personnel inject one into the fish. Biologists also tag lunker offspring. If someone catches a tagged lunker, biologists can determine growth rates for that fish. “Tags injected into every lunker give a unique history of that fish,” Forshage said. “We had one lunker that was caught three times over the years.” With these tagging devices, biologists can also determine the family tree of individual fish in the program through “genetic fingerprinting.” Armed with this genetic information, hatchery officials can cross two bass with excellent growth potential to produce offspring that may eventually break records. “Genetics is one of the biggest factors in producing lunker bass,” Forshage explained. “We can take a fin clip off a donated lunker and — if it was from our hatchery — tell who its father and mother were. Using genetic fingerprinting techniques, TP&WD begun studies in selected public reservoirs using tagged ShareLunker offspring to determine the growth rate of OWR fish compared to other largemouth bass in those reservoirs. Results so far show OWR fish grow bigger faster.” Even within the same spawn,

ShareLunker and the Texas Quest for a Bass World Record by john n. felsher T e x a S

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though, not all fingerlings will live up to their potential – if they survive to adulthood! Although a single female bass may produce millions of offspring in her lifetime, only a tiny fraction reach eight pounds, much less 10 pounds. Even fewer 10-pound fish live to make 15-pounders. A six-inch bass with genes that could enable it to top 25 pounds may make a great meal for a three-pound bass with inferior genes or any number of other predators. “The only problem with selective breeding is it’s a very slow process,” Forshage advised. “It takes years for a bass to grow to 13 pounds.”

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he roots of the present Toyota ShareLunker Program actually date to the 1950s when Texas began building reservoirs to maintain a steady freshwater supply in a state with only one large natural lake — Caddo on the Louisiana-Texas line. With the building of reservoirs in the 1960s and 1970s, bass fishing boomed, but anglers wanted to catch bigger fish. Therefore, TPWD began releasing Florida-strain largemouths in 1972. Floridas grow faster and bigger than native northern largemouths. Biologists hoped the introduction of Florida genes into Texas waters would produce bigger bass. It did. “Stocking Florida bass into Texas waters produced a lot bigger fish,” Forshage said. “Prior to stocking Florida bass in Texas, the state record was 13.5 pounds. It was caught by H.R. Magee in Lake Medina in January 1943. That record stood for 37 years until it was broken by a Florida bass. Magee’s fish is not even in the Top 50 now. Without those Florida genes, we would not get giant bass.” In 1980, a 14.1-pound bass broke the Medina Lake record. During the next 12 years, the state record fell several times. The ShareLunker Program began in 1986 with the objective of selectively breeding larger fish and promoting catch-and-release. Mark Stevenson caught a 17.67-pound Lake Fork lunker on Nov. 26, 1986, the first ShareLunker to enter the program. That fish also set a new state record, which stood until St. Clair caught his 18.18pound sowbelly in 1992. Stevenson’s fish currently holds the second spot. Many peobelieve that the record could fall again so as more Operation World Record fish and

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as more Operation World Record fish and their offspring continue to grow. Since 1986, more than 500 ShareLunkers from more than 60 water bodies entered the program. Survival rates of these big fish increased as anglers and biologists learned more about how to handle giants. Under Operation World Record, the state released more than 10 million fry spawned from ShareLunkers and their offspring into more than 70 lakes since 2005. “The breeding program is going well,” Forshage said. “We’ve satisfied all of our stocking objectives, but it will take time. In the past couple of years, we’ve seen an increase in the maximum size of fish donated to the ShareLunker program. We’ve also seen an increase in the average weight of the lunkers entering the program.” The 2012-13 program received a belowaverage number of entries during the season just ended, but the number of lakes producing 13-pound or bigger largemouth bass continued to increase, and investments in DNA testing showed promising results. One season highlight was the catch of a 12.54-pound ShareLunker offspring from

Lake Naconiche near Nacogdoches and the subsequent identification of the parentage of the fish using archived DNA samples. Nine fish were intergrades and two were pure Florida largemouth bass. The two pure Florida entries spawned, producing a total of 58,550 eggs. In addition, a ShareLunker offspring from a research lake produced 36,957 eggs. Each lake producing an entry this past season will receive a share of the fingerlings resulting from those spawns. Lake Fork rebounded from low production the past few seasons to produce four entries, the most of any lake. Lake Austin had two entries, and Lakes Dunlap, Falcon, Toledo Bend, Palestine, Amon G. Carter and Lake O’ the Pines produced one each. One fish, Toyota ShareLunker 538, caught by Gary Sims of Gunter on December 12, 2012, was a recapture. The fish weighed 15.02 pounds when caught by Sims; it weighed 14.25 pounds when caught by Ed Carter in March 2011. Lake Fork also produced the big bass of the season, a 16.04-pounder caught by Richard Scibek of Granbury on February 2, 2013. He was named Angler of the Year.

New ShareLunker Weigh and Holding Stations were established at Lake Casa Blanca International State Park, Falcon State park, Oak Ridge Marina on Lake Fork and Johnson Creek Marina on Lake O’ the Pines. An analysis of ShareLunker entries since the inception of the program in 1986 shows there has been a slight decline in the number of entries per season, from an average of 19.6 the first five seasons to 18.8 the past five. There has also been a slight decline in average weight from 14.1 pounds the first five seasons to 13.8 pounds the last five. Driving these declines were the fish from Lake Fork. It has contributed 253 of the 548 ShareLunker entries, and its decline from extraordinary to merely great has obscured the patterns observed among other reservoirs. “There’s nothing wrong with Lake Fork, it’s just getting older, and largemouth bass productivity typically declines as reservoirs age,” said Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) geneticist Dijar Lutz-Carrillo. “All reservoirs go through this process. What is amazing about Lake Fork is that is has produced big fish for such a long time.” Lake Fork’s four entries during the season just past weighed 14.06, 13.11, 16.04 and 15.02 pounds for an average weight of 14.55 pounds, well above the ShareLunker program historical average of 13.8 pounds. “If we take Lake Fork out of the analysis, a different picture of trophy largemouth bass in Texas emerges,” Lutz-Carrillo said. “The average number of ShareLunker entries has actually increased from 6.2 the first five seasons to 16 over the last five seasons, and the average weight of these fish has been remarkably consistent, 13.9 pounds over the first five seasons and 13.8 over the last five. And all along these fish have been getting longer, whether we include Lake Fork entries in the analysis or not, from 25.2 inches the first five seasons to 26 inches over the last five.” “Those figures illustrate the success of the ShareLunker program,” said TFFC director Allen Forshage. “By loaning their fish to the ShareLunker program for use in the selective breeding program, which uses only pure Florida largemouth bass, anglers are helping to produce trophy fish for others to catch.” For information on Toyota ShareLunker see www.tpwd.state.tx.us/sharelunker. If you catch a potential ShareLunker, call 1-888784-0600 at any time.

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Texas Freshwater by Matt Williams | TF&G Freshwater Editor

Electronics Not Just for Depth Finding Any More

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t is no secret that Lowrance ranks among the biggest of the big cheeses in the world of marine electronics. That’s because the Oklahoma-based outfit has for years taken serious pride in its products and worked to manufacture some of the most reliable, user friendly and technological advanced units that money can buy. At the forefront of the company’s army of GPS chart plotters are the HDS Gen2 and the all new HDS Gen2 Touch. The latter comes with touch screen technology that allows for navigating menus and settings in much the same way that you get around on a SmartPhone. As handy as these modern GPS chart plotters are for keeping tabs on water depth, contour changes and potentially good fishing locations, they are capable doing much more. Way much more. Sadly, only a small percentage of the anglers out there take the time -- or have the confidence -- to feel their way around the units and learn to maximize their capabilities. While I’m no gambler, I’d venture to say as few as few as 10 percent of the anglers who fork over the $2,000-plus to own one of these babies are familiar with as many as 70 percent of its handy, user-friendly features. Perhaps Lowrance pro staffer Jim Tutt of Longview summarized it best. “The HDS is much more than a depth finder and a GPS,” Tutt said. “It’s a virtual toolbox full of other useful options that a lot of anglers may not even know exist. I will use some of the options for special situations, while others I will make use of all the time.”

Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA) The ETA function allows you to keep track of the amount of time it will take to

travel from one location to another right down to the last second based on how fast the boat is moving. This one can be especially useful to tournament anglers because it helps you maximize fishing time without worrying about getting to the weigh-in on time. To illustrate, Tutt referenced Day 2 of a tournament he was fishing on Beaver Lake a few years ago. Time was running short and Tutt was still one fish shy of completing his limit. “My ETA told I still had five minutes to get back to weigh-in, so I took the time to stop on a main lake point on the way in and make a few casts,” he said. “I ended up catching a three pounder. That one fish helped me win $13,000 instead of $11,000.” To utilize the ETA feature you must first pop a waypoint of the location you plan to return to before you leave it. That way you can enter that waypoint, hit “Go To” and get your ETA from your current location.

Range Rings Range rings are a series of fixed circles that can be programmed to appear on the mapping screen to help you maintain an accurate reading of the distance between a target waypoint as the boat closes in. The range distance can adjusted between 25 and 50 feet, depending on the mapping software in use. Zooming in narrows the gap; zooming out widens the gap. The range ring option can be particularly useful when used in combination with waypoints that are used for marking spawning beds, brush piles, river ledges, submerged grass beds and other potential sweet spots that can be spoiled in short order by getting T e x a S

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too close before you start fishing. It also can useful for marking underwater hazards, so you can maintain a safe distance while the boat is underway.

Panel Size Adjustment HDS allows you to view multiple screen panels (sonar, map, structure scan, etc….) all at the same time. The panel size adjustment allows for adjusting the individual screen panel sizes smaller or larger, depending on individual preference. There are certain situations when Tutt prefers to pair a large mapping window with a small sonar window and vice versa. “Let’s say you are on a big lake like Erie with multiple waypoints marking rock piles, or a large flat on Sam Rayburn with multiple waypoints marking beds and other sweet spots -- that’s when I want the mapping screen large and sonar panel small,” he said. “A larger sonar panel would be the deal on a lake like Guntersville, where you are actually looking for fish with DownScan and are more concerned about water depth.”

Waypoint Management One of the really cool features about the HDS Gen2 Touch is it simplifies waypoint management by allowing you export and save waypoints from different lakes or specific areas within a lake to individual user files. It also eliminates the time consuming task of deleting or backing up waypoints one-by-one for later use. Anglers who visit multiple lakes will find this feature especially useful in that it prevents the unit’s processor from getting cluttered and keeps it operating at super-fast speeds.

Contact Matt Williams at MWilliams@fishgame.com

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Despite Increased Pressures, Texas Shark Numbers Remain Robust

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on the Texas Coast

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ome creatures can remind you how small humans truly are. I was weigh master at the 2006 Willacy County Young Farmer’s Tournament. It had been an uneventful tournament. There were a few big trout, redfish and one 40 pound blacktip shark that led the offshore division. Then the tournament director, J.C. Blackwell came up to the scale at a trot.

“We’ve got a big shark coming in!” he said breathlessly. “Well, tell him to bring it up to the scale,” I said. “You don’t understand,” J.C. said. “This shark is HUGE.” I walked down the Port Mansfield Pavilion’s dock walkway to a boat that was

surrounded by anglers and tourists. On the deck of the boat was a tiger shark that stretched from the center console to the stern gunwale and barrel-thick. I looked at J.C. “Do we have a scale to weigh something like this? “No,” he replied, “But you can just declare it the winner. I don’t think we have T e x a S

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another fish that will beat it.” The man who caught the 40 pound blacktip chimed in. “How can you declare it the winner without at least a measurement?” He had a point. J.C. found a tape measure, and Bill Glenn—who caught the giant—and I jumped back down into the boat and measured it (for some reason, Glenn held the tape at the tail of the fish while I had to measure to the nose, and mouth). The shark was 13 feet long. That’s an 1100 pound fish.

Fins Game

Shark fishing is an institution on the Texas Coast. The Galveston Jetties, Padre Island National Seashore, and the South Brazos Santiago Jetties are iconic spots among hunters of the Man in the Grey Suit. Tackle shops up and down the Texas Seaboard have pictures of monster hammerheads, tigers, lemons and bull sharks with proud anglers standing next to G a m e ®

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them. Roy’s Tackle in Corpus Christi still has a photo of a huge 1200+ pound tiger taken off PINS. Many people over the age of 35 who grew up around Port Isabel and South Padre Island can tell you about being kids and seeing the old men who used to shark fish on the North Jetties with huge Calcutta poles and 9/0 Penn Senators loaded with 100 pound mono. Shark fishing has always been popular around these parts. The shark fishery is still very strong in Texas, according to Texas Parks in Wildlife Southern Coastal Fisheries Leader Mark Lingo. “We have a good population of the medium-sized sharks such as blacktip and spinners,” said Lingo. “The big sharks like the bulls, lemons, tigers and great hammerheads are caught mostly in the big passes and offshore, but they’re also out there.” Lingo added that the shark fishery’s strength is remarkable when two factors are taken into account: the first is that worldwide shark numbers have dropped, especially of seagoing species such as oceanic whitetip and various whaler sharks, due to the almost unrestricted commercial harvest

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of shark fins for use in Asian dishes. The National Marine Fisheries has asserted that some shark populations have dropped as much as 90% since 2000. The second factor is the pressure on Texas coastal shark populations by illegal gillnetting and long lining by Mexican commercial fishermen who trespass into state waters. State game wardens have confiscated literally miles of illegal nets and long lines set by Mexican poachers who have depleted their home country’s resources and are looking for new frontiers. Still, Texas anglers see plenty of sharks.

Rows of Teeth

“There are lots of sharks out there,” says avid shark angler Marin Alvarado, III. “There are tons of four-footers out in the surf, and those are the perfect size to catch. They put up a good fight, and are just right if you want a few shark steaks for the grill.” During the fall, when mullet migrate up and down the coast and smaller baitfish start to form bait balls along the beachfront, huge numbers of sharks invade the surf line to par-

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take in the smorgasbord. These sharks may range from dinky two-foot spinners and sand sharks to robust bulls and lemons in the five to seven foot range and a few bigger bulls, lemons, hammerheads and tigers sprinkled in for entertainment purposes. Offshore anglers see their fair share of large sharks as well. Fishermen trolling around oil rigs report spotting monstrous tigers cruising around and sometimes even stealing hapless fish off the hooks of bottom fishermen. On more than one occasion an angler dozing in the fighting chair has been startled back to reality when a huge mako crashes the spread and vaults 20 feet into the air before breaking off and disappearing back into the cobalt.

Smart Conservation

According to Lingo, the strong Texas shark fishery is a reward for years of smart conservation. Conservative size and bag limits have protected shark populations from overfishing. An assist goes to state game wardens that are diligent in enforcing those regulations and help inform anglers who may

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Photo: © FAUP - Fotolia.com

Know the Rules! Texas Shark Regulations of regulations for Texas sharks: For Atlantic sharpnose, blacktip, and bonnethead sharks anglers may retain one (1) shark with a minimum total length of 24 inches.

For all other sharks, including all hammerhead (except bonnethead), tiger, bull, lemon, finetooth, spinner, blacknose, thresher, blue, shortfin mako, nurse, and oceanic white-tip, anglers may retain one (1) shark with a minimum

total length of 64 inches. For further information, visit the site www.tpwd. state.tx.us/publications/pwdpubs/media/ pwd_br_v3400_1162.pdf

be unaware of what the regulations are. Though anglers are allowed to retain their personal limits, many are opting to release all the shark they catch. “I just love the kick I get out of a sharks fight,” said another avid shark fisherman,

Louie Sanfillipo of Corpus Christi. “I’ve pulled in 10-foot hammerheads (from the PINS surf) and let them go. I don’t need to kill one of those fish. It’s just beautiful to touch one and feel the power under the skin. Then, it’s even better when I watch one

swim back out. That’s all a lot of us surf rats need to have an awesome day.” Thanks to the strong fishery, those awesome days should continue.

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6/10/13 2:26 PM


Open Season by Reavis Wortham | TF&G Humor Editor

Men Seeking Lease

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he somewhat dejected membership of the Hunting Club, myself included, milled under a wide live oak as Chet Hanby waved an arm toward a tired looking homemade deer stand. “Yessir, I built that one about 20 years ago and have killed a lot of deer from up there. You boys go ahead and take a look in her.” Seeing that the rest of us were content to stay in the shade, Delbert P. Axelrod, frequent sunstroke victim, left the cool shelter and made his way through the prickly pear to examine said deer stand. “How many acres do you have here?” Doc asked. “Fiteen hunnerd,” Chet answered. “I got too old to hunt, so I figgered I’d just raise cows full time and let somebody else have a chance at these bucks. I reckon you boys could offer me a little backstrap every now and then…” “Sure,” Wrong Willie answered, ever the negotiator. “Any other game here?” Chet watched Delbert grab hold of the wooden ladder reaching up to the ten foot stand. “You betcha. With the deer we have hogs, turkey, dove, a few quail, and you can fish in any of the tanks whenever you want.” Delbert opened the door and fell backward off the ladder, followed by a swarm of angry insects. “I should have told ya to watch for yellow jackets,” Chet said. “I haven’t checked that stand in a while.” Delbert flailed for a moment and started running back toward our shade. Experienced outdoorsmen, the Club members set their feet to run before the Cap’n waved Delbert off. “Go the other

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way, Idiot! Don’t lead them here!” “Run to that tree over there!” I waved toward the opposite direction. Delbert veered away and outdistanced most of the unhappy Stingers. He shot behind the wide tree trunk, as if they couldn’t see him from the air. Relieved, I contemplated the stand. “You know, that looks a lot like one Cousin and I built when we were in junior high. We didn’t call it a deer stand, though. We referred to it as a Frog Stand, because it was by the stock tank on Granddad’s farm.” Doc cleared his throat. “Anyway, do you have any other stands here or do we need to bring our own…what’s a Frog Stand?” Derailed from the original conversation and Delbert’s evasive moves, Chet waited for my answer, which I cheerfully supplied. “We were kids, and didn’t hunt deer, but we liked to shoot bullfrogs with our BB guns, so we re-purposed some lumber from the barn to build it. That was after we built a three level tree house in a red oak not far from the barn.” “What’s re-purposed mean?” Chet asked. “I got that term from HGTV,” I answered. “That’s where you take something and use it for something else.” H gave the statement some thought. “What’s HGTV?” “It’s a cable channel,” Willie answered. “We ain’t on the cable,” Chet said. “We just get Channel 9 on our old antenna.” “So anyway,” I plowed on. “We built the Frog Stand and shot a lot of frogs from there. We also shot some birds, a few targets, the bull, that was a joke, and a few snakes…” Our conversation was interrupted when Delbert left his tree to rejoin us. The yellow jackets had apparently gone back to their nest. Delbert was typing on his phone with his thumbs. “Hey, there’s no 911 out here.” “Nope. We just call the sheriff, or if we need medical help, we throw whoever is sick or hurt in to the truck and go to town.” Delbert’s eyes widened at something F i s h

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he saw on the screen. “You have three-G, though. It says here you can put chewing tobacco on a sting and it helps.” “What’s three…” Chet began. “Internet for the phone,” I answered and watched Doc take a huge chew out of his cheek and mash it on a red welt swelling on Delbert’s neck. “Ewww, that’s nasty,” Delbert complained. I tried to get the conversation back on track. “Anyway, we kind of like this place.” “Sure,” Chet said. “I bet you boys would like it here. Y’all want to see more?” “Oh wait, yes you do,” Delbert started talking loud into his phone, as if it were old fashioned long distance. We left him under our tree, and walked away, toward the big stock tank lined by large oaks. Wrong Willie opened negotiations. “You have a price in mind?”. Chet told us, Doc staggered and I wondered if we’d need Delbert’s nonexistent 911 service after all. “That’s pretty steep.” My voice came out high. “Hey guys, how long we gonna be here?” Delbert called across the hot pasture. “I don’t know.” The Cap’n regained his equilibrium. “Well, the pizza delivery guy says it might be 45 minutes, and he wants to talk to Chet there to get directions.” Chet nodded and tilted his hat back. “Well boys, I’m sorry, but I gave y’all last year’s rates. Double it, and that’ll be what it’ll take this year.” “Thanks.” Willie looked crestfallen. “But we’ll have to pass. We’ll be going now.” “What about him?” Chet pointed at Delbert way back under the original tree. “Tell him to meet the pizza guy at the gate, find a shade to eat it, and we’ll come by and pick him up on the way back home Sunday,” Doc said and he climbed in the truck and left. Contact Reavis Wortham at RWortham@fishgame.com

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Digital Edition

Free Range Exotics by gayne c. young

Fences may make good neighbors but in the last century they’ve also proven that they’re not very good at keeping exotics (In this case defined as non-indigenous deer, antelope, goats, sheep, and bovines) in a designated area. Because of this, Texas is home to more free-ranging exotics than anywhere else in the world. And for hunters who want a chance at big game animals from exotic locales around the globe without spending high-fence prices, that’s a good thing.

Photo: Gayne C. Young

The Species

Through carelessness, accidental escape, and intentional release large numbers of exotics such as axis, sika, and fallow deer as well as blackbuck, aoudad, and nilgai and a multitude of other species roam freely and without restriction throughout the Lone Star State. In some cases, due to prolific breeding, a lack of natural predators, and fairly low hunting pressure, the number of free ranging exotics in Texas dramatically outnumbers the specie’s numbers in its native environment. T F & G

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GEARING UP SECTION

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texas tested • Hobie, G-Loomis | by TF&G staff

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industry insider • Hooked for Life, Springfield/Rob Leatham | by TF&G staff

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fish and game gear• Hot New Outdoor Gear | by TF&G staff

OUTDOOR LIFESTYLE SECTION

FISHING FORECAST SECTION

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COVER STORY • Free Range Exotics | by gayne c. young

HOW-TO SECTION

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texas boating • 10 Quick Tips to Make Your Boat Better | by lenny rudow

66 tips • Boat Rigging for 67 paul’s Dummies | guns & gear • The 68 texas Deer Hunt | texas kayaking • Summer School | by greg berlocher by paul bradshaw

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Texas Hotspots • Texas’ Hottest Fishing Spots | by calixto gonzales, bob hood & george sportsman’s daybook • Tides & Prime Times | by TF&G staff

101 |texas tasted • Feral Hog Ham CLASSIFIED 102 OUTDOOR DIRECTORY • Guides, Gear and More | TF&G by mike holmes

hotspots focus: upper coast • Surf, Rigs Hot in July | by capt. eddie hernandez

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hotspots focus: galveston • Cause and Effect | by capt. mike holmes

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hotspots focus: matagorda • Diversity in Fishing | by

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hotspots focus: rockport • The Art of the Net | by capt. mac

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hotspots focus: lower coast • Pedestrian Ports | by

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tf&g Photos • Your Action Photos | by TF&G readers

mike price

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calixto gonzales

www.FishGame.com

by steve lamascus

In the Southern region of the state for example, more than 30,000 nilgai antelope call the Gulf Coastal Prairie home. This dwarfs the number of blue bulls found in their native India where hunting was made illegal in the 1970s. In the Panhandle and Western region of the state aoudad sheep in herds as large as 300 in number reign supreme over the sparsely vegetated landscape that resembles their native North Africa. And in some counties of the Edwards Plateau and South Texas Plains, axis, fallow, and sika deer often outnumber native whitetail. For the hunter that is willing to put in the time and effort, Texas offers more opportunities at free ranging exotic game than any other state in the union. As more than 90 percent of Texas is privately owned, most hunts for free-range exotics are found on private land. These landholdings fall into three major categories: upscale hunting ranches, managed land, and mom and pop outfits. The first group is by far the more common and, unfortunately for the bargain hunter, the most expensive. These facilities, such as the Indianhead near Del Rio, cater to the hunter who expects 58 |

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Private Land Hunts

Free range sika taken by the author near Harper, Texas.

five-star accommodations and chef-prepared meals along with his quest for free-ranging exotics. Facilities such as these that offer true free-range exotics are difficult to find but they are out there. Most that do offer true free-ranging animals have at least partial high-fencing. This is the case with the F i s h

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Indianhead whose western and southern boundaries are free of eight-foot tall fencing yet semi-barricaded by canyons, deep draws, and rivers. Head guide Darren Carr explains, “Of course this doesn’t keep animals on the ranch. Some have left and others have come on but then that’s what

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Cover Story

Young bagged this free rang scimitar-horned oryx at the Indianhead hunting ranch near Del Rio.

makes it free-range I guess.” The second group of private land is that which is managed by an outfitter or outfitting group who conducts hunts on behalf of the actual owner. Outfits such as Wildlife Systems, Inc. have access to hundreds of thousands of acres – mostly in south and west Texas – where they conduct hunts for free-ranging nilgai and aoudad. Owner Greg Simons has seen the latter roaming the mountains outside Alpine in groups as large as 300 to 400 in number. “When you find them like that you feel like you’ve hit the mother lode,” Greg explains. “But trying to get within three hundred yards and have a clean shot at the right sheep when you’ve got 200 of them surrounding you can be pretty confounding.” 60 |

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While these first two groups can easily be found following some time on Google, the third is more likely to be found in local papers or through word of mouth. These are smaller land holdings that just so happen to be blessed - or cursed, depending on your outlook - with uninvited species. These can range from the hundred acre ranch where I hunted outside of Kerrville where I saw a herd of over 120 axis deer to the forty acre family retreat I happened upon in Harper where in one afternoon I saw axis and fallow deer, black buck and an errant aoudad. Accommodations on these mom and pop properties is usually non-existent but well worth the hassle for the chance at true freerange animals.

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Public Land As exotics continue to spread throughout the state, more and more public land is becoming inundated with animals originally from Asia, Africa, and Europe. Wildlife management areas that once hosted drawn public hunts for whitetail and mule deer only are now adding axis and fallow deer, mouflon, black buck, ibex, and red stag to their list of species available for hunting. Examples of this from last year’s Public Hunt System include three out of the 15 in the Archery Deer category offering exotics and 10 out of 30 in the Gun Deer, Either sex offering exotics. There are even special drawings just for exotics, both with archery gear and with traditional firearms. This hunt

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The author with a free range red sheep that had only one horn.

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hunts for aoudad, black buck antelope, and mouflon sheep. The Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge (www.fws.gov/ refuges/profiles/index.cfm?id=21553) near Harlingen offers public hunts for nilgai. Hunts for free-range exotics in Texas aren’t hard to find but they do take a bit of research to locate. Fortunately the there’s

no season on exotics so hunting is open year round. That leaves you plenty of time to plan your first or next free-range exotic hunt. I suggest you start now!

Visit the author online at: www.GayneCYoung.com

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– and their locales - is easy to find, research, and to apply for. Simply visit Texas Parks and Wildlife webpage at www.tpwd.state. tx.us to check out the Public Hunt Drawing System. For a chance at free-range exotics on federal land look to the Amistad National Recreational Area (www.nps.gov/ amis/index.htm) near Del Rio, which offers

Young with a free range nilgai.

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Texas Boating by Lenny Rudow | TF&G Boating Editor

10 Quick Tips to Make Your Boat Better

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ure, we’d all like to march right over to the dealership and buy a brand new boat. Of course we wish we could afford the latest and greatest hull to hit the water. But economic reality will stop most of us from enjoying such a pleasure in the near-term. In fact, some of us will be hard-pressed to come up with an extra $10. Luckily, no matter how old your boat is, how bad it looks, or how often it breaks, there are some quick, easy, and extremely cheap things you can do to make it better. Ready to get started?

it in a regular washing machine. But be careful to set it to cold water, only, because a hot water wash can cause it to wrinkle and distort. And don’t add much detergent – a sprinkle is all it takes – or the canvas will lose its water-repelling properties. No matter how careful you are, after a wash it still won’t repel water as well as it once did so after its back on the boat, spray it down with canvas waterproofer. Make sure you do this early in the day, when sunny skies are forecasted. The longer the waterproofer gets to soak in and dry, the better it will work.

1. Canvas Conundrum – Okay, so the canvas on your T-top is old, dingy, and mildewed. Don’t worry; you can wash

2. DSC Delight – If your boat has a GPS and a VHF radio, there’s an extremely good chance they’re not wired

together to get you DSC (digital selective calling) capabilities. With DSC up and running the Coast Guard will receive your latitude and longitude via VHF at the press of a button—a great safety feature, which 90 percent of the boats on the water today don’t take advantage of. Luckily, getting these two units to talk to each other is amazingly easy; just wire the NMEA data-out wire on the GPS to the NMEA data-in wire on the VHF. You don’t know which wire is which? Five minutes on Google can straighten that problem out. Then go to www.boatus.com to get a (free) MMSI identification number, punch the number

“ With DSC the Coast Guard will receive your latitude and longitude at the press of a button.

“ into your VHF, and you’ll have full DSC functionality without spending a dime. 3. Fog Fighter – Nothing says “old” like a foggy Lexan or Plexiglas windscreen. You could buy a plastic polishing kit, but that would cost money. And we’d bet you already have some car polish sitting around in the garage somewhere. In most cases, this stuff works just as well. Be sure to try an inconspicuous area first, and whatever you do, never use an ammonia-based cleaner on a plastic windscreen, or it’ll turn foggy and yellow in no time. 4. Raw Water Repair – If your 62 |

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Texas Boating

5. Rope Rejuvenation – You say you wish there was a way to make those stiff old dock and anchor lines flexible and soft once again? There is. All you’ll need is a cup of fabric softener and a bucket of warm water. Mix them well, drop in your lines, and let them soak for a few hours. Then dry them in a cool, shaded area. The next time you coil them up, you’ll be shocked at how soft and supple they feel. 6. Supplemental Speed – Just about all of us wish our boat went a tiny bit faster. And you can get that extra MPH or two, if your boat has bottom paint on it. Bottom paint shaves off a few MPH due to both weight and friction. There’s not much

All of us wish our boat went a tiny bit faster.

raw water wash-down just doesn’t blast the way it used to and you use your boat in saltwater, there’s a good chance the problem is in your nozzle, not the pump. Bits of scale and crust often build up inside of it, cutting down the water flow. To solve the problem, make a 50-50 mix with water and vinegar in a bucket. Then drop in the nozzle and let it soak for a couple of hours. When you hook it back up, it’ll fire out that water like it was new again.

you can do about the extra weight of the paint (hint: getting rid of unnecessary gear in the boat will often get you a MPH or two, all on its own) but you can reduce the friction with some careful wet-sanding. Start with 220-grit, on a rubber sanding block. Soak it in water, then sand the bottom making sure each and every stroke runs parallel to the centerline. Once you’ve done the entire bottom, do it over again with 400-grit paper. Be sure to smooth out any bumps or imperfections you find as you go, and when the process is complete, your boat should go a tiny bit faster. 7. Supplemental Speed II – Your boat’s bottom is paint-free? Proper treatment can still get you some extra

speed—and wax isn’t the answer. Wax will grip tiny air bubbles, which increase friction as the hull moves through the water. Instead, you need to coat your boat’s bottom with a product designed to carry a microscopic layer of water along with the hull. HySpeedKote or QuickCraft will do the trick. If you can’t find it in a nearby store or on the internet (and if you don’t know how to order off of the internet, we hope you awaken from that coma soon), remember that Rain-X works, too. 8. Vibration Elimination – Does it seem like your boat vibrates more than it used to while you cruise? If so, there’s a good chance you have a nick or two on the prop, that is creating the added vibrations. Severe damage needs to be fixed by a pro, but minor nicks and dings can be flattened out with a regular metal file. 9. Waxy Wonder – If you’re sick and tired of sticky hatches and drawers that are so swelled with moisture that they’re tough to open, the solution is easy. All you need is a regular wax candle—simply rub it around the edges of whatever’s sticking, and the candle wax will help keep it unstuck. Bonus tip: the candle trick works for hesitant zippers and rusty snaps, too. 10. Wire De-crustifier – Crusty green corroded wires can make all of your electrical accessories unreliable. But rewiring your boat would cost an arm and a leg. Luckily, there’s an easy way to get rid of the crud: pickle juice. Yes, pickle juice. I know it sounds exceptionally weird, but if you soak your connections in pickle juice the corrosion will melt away. Once it’s gone, rinse and dry the wires then coat all exposed surfaces with liquid electrical tape, to protect them from future corrosion. Contact Lenny Rudow at LRudow@fishgame.com

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Texas Kayaking by Greg Berlocher | TF&G Kayaking Editor

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here are two major reasons why you go to summer school: to catch up or to get ahead. If a student has trouble with a particular course, a remedial course allows them to catch up. Students can also attend summer school to get ahead, taking courses ahead of time and build educational credits. Although I have finished all of my high school and college requirements, I will be heading off to summer school to sharpen up my angling and paddling skills. Dean Thomas, owner of Slow Ride Guide Service, has been teaching the Texas Kayak Fishing School class for twelve years. Although we are long time friends on the phone, Thomas and I haven’t been able to fish together for one assorted reason or another. During a recent chinwag, Thomas invited me to attend one of his upcoming classes. Don’t call me an old dog because I will learn some new tricks. Each class covers three days, with classroom and on-the-water instruction and all level of paddlers are welcome to attend. Thomas explained the basic course syllabus, saying, “We cover a variety of things, all of which are important to kayak fishermen. We start with safety. There are lots of ways to get hurt out on the water. We discuss the best ways to prevent getting hurt. For instance, there is a lot of action in your lap while you are fishing from your kayak. Lots more people get hooked in kayaks than in regular boats. In a kayak, you bring the action right into your lap. Fishermen can get hooked in the legs and hands and need to understand what tools they need and how to deal with the situation if it happens to them” In addition to safety, Thomas teaches students how to be efficient when pad-

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There are two reasons you go to summer school: to catch up or to get ahead.

Summer School

dling in the wind; the science of tides and underwater terrain; how to fish structure, like oyster reefs and drop-offs; how the tides vary with the season; the biology of popular game fish; and tackle selection for the Texas Gulf Coast. The first day is spent in the classroom as well as the first half of the second day. Instruction is then moved to the water the afternoon of the second day as well as the morning of the third - assuming the weather cooperates. Occasionally the wind and weather are just too dangerous to venture out on the water. “You can’t send people out to hurt themselves,” stated Thomas. When the weather cooperates, Thomas focuses on shallow water venues and students learn how to sight cast with lures and flies. Without pausing for a breath, Thomas rattled off at least six options within fifty miles of his shop in Aransas Pass. “There are a lot more places to fish in this area besides Lighthouse Lakes.” “Everything revolves around water conditions,” Thomas explained. “Sightcasting requires the right depth of water. Too shallow or too deep will affect your chances of success. There are different high and low tides during the different seasons. We will fish different flats depending on the type of low tide we have. Tides should impact the planning of everyone’s trips. We are always chasing the prime depth around.” Thomas explained that the goal of the class is for each student to take what they have learned and be able to plan trips on their own. If you plan on paddling the Texas coast you will have to deal with the wind. “It’s the life we live outdoors,” explained Thomas. “If you don’t want to play games with the wind, I suspect you need to find a new game.” Anglers of all ages can attend Texas Kayak Fishing School. The school sees a lot of husband-wife bookings as well as fatherson trips. Thomas, a former scoutmaster, enjoys a good rapport with young people. “I enjoy teenage kids way more than their

parents do,” he chuckled. There is a definite need for this type of class. The sport of kayak fishing is growing faster than an okra pod in the summer heat, and not everyone has a group of friends they can learn from. Kayak anglers need a place to start. Plus, a class allows you to determine whether kayak angling is a good fit. Paddling and casting aren’t for everyone and some people realize after taking a class that they need to find a different pursuit The Texas Kayak Fishing School (www.texaskayakfishingschool.com) holds multiple classes throughout the year. Dates are listed on the web site. The cost per person is $350. Gift certificates are available. Although Thomas doesn’t advertise, his classes sell out quickly. There are benefits to booking early. Besides being guaranteed a seat in the class, you have a little extra time to put in for a vacation request. There are two major reasons why you go to summer school: to catch up or to get ahead. This summer school will help you find more summer schools. That’s getting ahead in my mind.

Greg Berlocher can be reached for question or comment at GBerlocher@fishgame.com.

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Paul’s Tips

Boat Rigging for Dummies

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y wife unhooked the crappie, looked at me and asked, “Where’s the measuring board?” I stared back with a stupid look on my face (as I do most of the time) because we didn’t have a measuring board on the boat. You see, the wife and I recently purchased a boat so that we could spend more time on the water with the kids since they are growing way too fast. No, it’s not new. I’m an outdoor writer, not a lottery winner so I don’t have tons of cash to drop on a bazillion dollar bass boat. It’s used but in good condition and after just a few short trips has already turned into a great family investment. However, as the beginning of this article points out, I’m not real bright and hadn’t adequately stocked it with fishing provisions. If you have ever purchased a boat then this article might be boring since you probably learned all this already, but if you’re in the market for one then pay attention because you need to know this stuff. There are certain items that you will need in your boat that probably 95 percent of you will never think of until you are out on the water wondering why you don’t have it. This month we’re going to look at these items and break them down into three categories: 1. Items the state of Texas requires. 2. Items you should have for emergencies. 3. Items you should have for convenience. There are certain items that the state requires you to have in your boat for safety purposes. Yes, this is a case of the government playing big brother and thinking they T F & G

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too. Throw in some wire cutters, wrenches, screwdrivers, pliers, wire ties, and a few nuts and bolts because you really don’t want to have to try and fix your outboard with a hook, split shot, and bubble gum. The last list of items is things that you should keep in your boat to make your fishing experience better, and so your wife doesn’t give you the stinkeye. Put a measuring board or stick in your boat and know what the length limit is for each fish you plan to chase. Don’t trust the measuring sticks molded into the tops of coolers, I know people who have found that out the hard way. Those of you who can’t afford GPS depth finders (like me) - do you have any marker buoys in your boat to mark brush piles? Yep, I forgot those too. How about a bait bucket for minnows when the kids go with you? Buy one. Do you have an anchor? What about a bow line to tie off to the dock? You’ll thank me for that one when you have to launch the boat by yourself. Got a paddle? Get one and hope you never have to use it. I’m sure there are a few things I’ve forgotten that you will need but this should give you a good start to help you enjoy your first or latest boat.

know what is best for you but there isn’t a huge list causing a lot of hardship for boat owners so you’ll just have to live with it. The first item on the list is an accessible properly fitting personal flotation device (PFD) for each person on board. Just a hint given to me by a friendly game warden, accessible means out on the deck not locked up in a storage box. If your boat is over 16 feet long then you must also have a throwable PFD aboard as well. For boats under 12 meters long you must have a sound making device on board (air horn, whistle, etc…). Boats over 12 meters must have a sound making device and a bell. Every boat must also have a light visible from 360 degrees from sunset to sunrise. If you are wondering if you should carry a fire extinguisher the answer is yes. There are a few boats that don’t require them, but just keep one on board anyway. It’s cheap insurance. That’s all you have to keep in the boat, but what about the items you should carry just in case? Do you have an extra plug? You should. How about duct tape? I’ve seen the guys on Mythbusters make an entire boat out of this stuff so you should probably keep a roll on hand just in case you need to mend a broken hose, splice a few wires, or in dire times patch a hole in the hull. A few tools should be on this list A L M A N A C

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by Paul Bradshaw | TF&G Contributing Editor

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Texas Guns by Steve LaMascus | TF&G Shooting Editor Photo: Bigstock

The Deer Hunt

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y brother and I went deer hunting last week. It was actually a hunt intended to cull a few of the too many axis deer on a ranch near where I live. The ulterior motive was, for me, to put some of that scrumptious axis meat in the freezer. We went with the general manager of the ranch, who is a close friend of mine. We drove out in the big diesel pickup, then offloaded our stuff into a big 4-wheeler with front and rear seats. I had decided to use my little .35 Whelen and David was toting his old .270, which has been all over the country with us, from West Texas to Wyoming and Idaho. Within a few hundred yards of the ranch headquarters, and about 10 minutes after we started out, we spied a nice, juicy, two year-old axis buck, weighing about 140 pounds. I had first shot, by way of a coin toss – my coin, by the way. I got into a comfortable rest position, put the crosshairs on the buck, aiming for a high shoulder shot at between 175 and 200 yards, and touched it off. The deer hit the ground so fast that I had to ask David if I hit it. He said I hit it and it ran off into the brush. He lied. The buck was lying right where it had been standing. The bullet, a 225-grain Nosler Ballistic Tip, hit the right shoulder, smashed the spine, and then broke the left shoulder on its way out, leaving a hole about two inches across. I shot the Ballistic Tip and aimed for bone by way of a test to see if the larger caliber Ballistic Tips really were built tougher than their smaller caliber kin. I think this proves that point rather conclusively. After I gutted my buck it was David’s turn. We saw several more axis deer but

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David didn’t shoot. After a while I asked him why he was along, if he didn’t intend to shoot a deer, and he said “I just came along to be out in the brush with a rifle in my hands. If I shoot it will ruin the rest of the day.” I guess he had a point, and that F i s h

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is the second and most important point of this piece. Sometimes shooting is just not what we want to do. Killing an animal is not always the point of the hunt. My wife, Kandace, and I live in the country on a small piece of land I bought

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after I retired from the Border Patrol. We sometimes have different game animals wandering through, including some decent white-tailed bucks. There is an old doe that comes into our place every evening to browse. The ranch next door has a lot of goats and they keep the huajilla pretty well denuded in the winter. The doe and whatever last-year’s fawns she has with her come to our place to eat the huajilla and other plants that stay leafed out pretty much all year, because we don’t have any goats on the place. At the moment, because of the continuing drought, the only stock we have is a 32-year old quarter horse named Festus. Festus has been with us since my daughter Lindy retired him about five years ago. I volunteered to feed him until he died. At that time I didn’t realize he was immortal. One evening this last December, I was standing on my deck, just pondering the imponderable and watching the rays of the setting sun light up the Anacacho Mountains in the distance, when I saw a deer cross our entrance road about 200 yards away. I got the binoculars and saw it was our old doe. Then I saw that there was a nice buck trailing her. I stepped into the house and picked up my .25-06, walked to the brace that supports the roof over the deck, and found the buck, a big eight-point, in the scope. I put the crosshairs on his ribs, flicked off the safety, and tickled the trigger. Then I watched as the buck followed the doe on across our place in the direction of the goat pens on our neighbor’s ranch. I never shot. I guess you could say I “counted coup” on the buck. I could have shot him, but just didn’t want to. I hope he lives long and has many, many sons and daughters. I have killed a lot of deer in the last 45 years. Most years I kill a good many on cull hunts on the surrounding ranches with MLD permits. Nowadays I have gotten to the point where just shooting a deer is no fun. I shoot them because they have to be shot and if I don’t do it someone else will, or because I have a new caliber or a new bullet that I need to test on game. I still love to hunt deer, but I almost never get to do that. Most of my deer killing is simple slaughter, not hunting. That was what it was with the axis in the above story. I got about as much pleasure out of that as I do out of shooting a sub-one inch group on my target range. I made a good shot, which made me feel good, but I was shooting meat, not hunting. T F & G

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There is a difference. I have found that most of us, as we age, begin to take things in a different perspective. A great many old hunters come along to keep camp, cook on the campfire, have a couple of sundowners, and tell stories in the camp house or around the campfire. They bring a rifle because this is, after all, a hunting trip, and they want to have the tool to do the job should they decide to. They might even go sit in a blind or take a stand on the point of a hill, to overlook a big valley. But seldom do they shoot. They understand that when they shoot, the hunt is over, so instead, they continue to hunt, right to the end. On some hunts in the last few years, where I was obligated to shoot a deer, I found myself wishing that there was some way to avoid it. This happened to me a few years ago on a writer’s hunt on a big ranch in South Texas. When the time came to drop the hammer, I didn’t want to. I would have rather been out calling the multitude of coyotes that roamed the place. I shot a nice eight-point buck, but the thrill just wasn’t there.

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This eventually happens to all of us, I think. After we have shot so many deer, the thrill we felt as young hunters goes away. We still love to hunt, but shooting brings on a certain sadness that we would rather avoid. When we shoot it is because we want the meat. It is part of the circle. At first we want to kill a lot of deer; then we want to kill a big deer; then some of us just want to hunt and let the deer continue to be deer. Some of us fight this by becoming bowhunters. Others sell their guns and buy a camera. Some, like my brother, and me, still take a rifle to the brush, because we want to have the ability to shoot a deer, even if we don’t pull the trigger. With the rifle in our hands we are hunting, without it we are merely spectators. There is a huge difference, and I really can’t explain it to you any better.

Contact Steve LaMascus at SLamascus@fishgame.com

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Hobie Pro Angler 12 Kayak anglers looking for a compact fishing mini-machine will be interested in Hobie’s latest offering, the Pro Angler 12. This is a scaled-down version of the Pro Angler 14, but it still offers plenty of room for the solitary fisherman and his gear. And since it’s specifically designed for fishing, it has a lot of features built-in which would require serious customization on more common kayaks. For starters, you can move the Pro

Angler 12 handsfree, if you get the Mirage Drive. This is Hobie’s pedal system which flaps a pair of flippers to propel you forward. Using leg power you can move just as fast as you can with a paddle, and more important, it leaves your hands available for fishing. The Pro Angler 12 also has four rodholders, molded-in flats for a fishfinder and transducer, a built-in tackle box, a cargo area that can be plumbed as a livewell, an optional anchor trolley system, and a forward stowage hatch. Having all of those fishing features onboard is great, but if you’re anything like me, after a couple of hours in a kayak, your back hurts like the devil. In fact, back 70 |

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problems are one of the biggest impediments to fishing from a kayak. So when I was checking out the Pro Angler 12 the feature I found the most important of all was the seat. Hobie calls it the Vantage, and it really is unlike any other kayak seat out there. It has adjustments for lumbar support, seatback, bottom, and height, so you can dial it in exactly right for your body size and shape. When I sat down in it, I could tell it would change my attitude towards kayak fishing forever. There are also a wide range of options

available for the Pro Angler 12, from an electric motor to an H-bar that provides you with something to hang onto if you stand up. Not that I think you’ll need it much. The roto-molded hull has a threefoot beam, so it’s exceptionally wide and stable for its size. It’s also fairly heavy for a 12-footer, tipping the scales at 120 pounds. On the off-chance that the built-in and optional equipment still doesn’t satisfy you, Hobie mounts a pair of replaceable mounting boards along the gunwales, just forward of the seat. That means you can screw down other accessories and mounts, without poking any holes into your hull or gunwales. When all is said and done, Hobie has thought of just about everything with the Pro Angler 12. Spend an afternoon fishing from one, and you’ll have to remind yourself that this little rig is a “kayak,” not a “boat.”

Photo: Hobie

Texas Tested

The Hobie Pro Angler 12 comes with a number of features that fishermen will appreciate, including Hobie’s Mirage Drive pedal system for handsfree propulsion. It also features the Vantage seating system with complete adjustment settings that will make a long day of fishing much easier on the back. F i s h

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Photo: G-Loomis

G-Loomis GLX The more specialized your equipment becomes, the more effective you can be at your mission. And if your mission is catching largemouth bass on conventional gear with soft plastic baits, the G Loomis GLX series of rods is going to make you particularly effective. These rods give you hyper-sensitivity, not only through the extra-fast action blank but also via a cork split-grip handle with the “mag-touch” trigger. This T F & G

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matches nicely with the dark green color of the G Loomis. The GLX series is available in a wide range of sizes: 6’8”, 7’1”, and 7’5”, in medium, heavy, medium-heavy, and extraheavy weights. Line weights for these rods range from 10 pound test, all the way up to 25 pound test. All of the models are one-piece, and have either fast or extra-fast tip actions. The pieces-parts used to build these rods are top-shelf; too, with Fuji titanium SIC guides and a clear coat that won’t fade, chip, or crack. These rods aren’t cheap—prices range from $410 to $460—but as usual, you get what you pay for. And if you want a highly-specialized bass rod that lets you feel every bump and nibble, the G Loomis GLX is not going to disappoint.

G-Loomis GLX rod series.

trigger is a bit different than most, more angular and a bit shorter, but since your finger slides in against the blank there’s zero sensitivity loss and I found it a comfortable place to hold my finger. The back section of the cork is contoured to fit your hand perfectly, the front section is just large enough for a finger-wrap, and all the while your forefingers touch the blank so you feel the slightest tap, quiver, or nibble. I tested the GLX 803C JWR, a medium-heavy extra-fast model rated for 12 to 16 pound test and 3/16 to 5/8 ounce lures, matched up with a Shimano Curado 200 G6 reel. This is a match made in heaven. The rig was light enough that I cast all day without tiring my wrist, but when a fish took my lure and I swung the tip up, it had gobs of hook-setting power. The dark metallic-green finish on the Curado even A L M A N A C

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Hooked for Life Tournament Drew over 2100 Children. On May 21 Hooked for Life, Kids Gone Fish’n kicked off their 4th Annual Fishing Tournament. More than 2100 children participated in the all free event. This is a very special event that the community looks forward to each year. Excitement filled the air with the arrival of 5,000 pounds of catfish that will stock the resaca systems of the City of Brownsville. Each year children are invited to witness and help with the stocking efforts. Involving children with nature at an early age is truly a wholesome experience for them. This year the organization was awarded a grant from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to stock the waters for the tournament. The first participants to arrive on Friday evening were Boy Scouts troops. Scouts pitched their tents and set up a campfire in preparation for a fun evening of activities. Cook-out, archery and outdoor movies were planned for the scouts. The scouts volunteered after the event for clean up efforts. On Saturday morning, participants began lining up to register at 3:30AM. Children from several cities competed in

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Over 2100 young anglers and their parents lined the resaca system of the city of Brownsville for the 4th Annual Kids Gone Fish’n Tournament.

the Kids Gone Fish’n tournament. The angling competition was hosted for children of ages 16 and under. Trophies were awarded to First- through Third-place winners for the longest fish in three age brackets. An overall trophy was awarded to the child that caught the longest fish of the tournament. The first 1500 kids that registered received a free rod-n-reel, t-shirt, goodie

Kids Gone Fish’n Results Third Place Samuel Rivera 4 yrs 23-3/4”

ages 6 and Under First Place Sebastian Escamilla 4 yrs 31-3/4” Second Place Joaquin Cavazos 6 yrs 28-1/2”

ages 7-11 First Place Fabian Covarrubias 10 yrs 28-3/4” Second Place Alexis Mandujano 11 yrs 22-1/4”

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bag, magic bait and snacks. This free tournament was made possible through the efforts of major sponsors such as City of Brownsville, Brownsville P.U.B., H.E.B., ACR Engineering, Driscoll Children’s Hospital, BCIC, Burke Children’s Dentistry, Las Huellas, Magic Bait, Sombrero Festival and Lone Star Bank. The goal is to provide children in the community an opportunity to enjoy our Third Place Liliana Baldonado 9 yrs 20-3/4”

Grand Champion Sebastian Escamilla 4 yrs 31-3/4”

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Photo: Hooked For Life

Industry Insider

ages 12-16 First Place Ruby Acosta 12 yrs 21” Second Place Brandon Guerrero 14 yrs 20-3/4” Third Place Leonel Ramirez 13 yrs 20-3/4” —TFG Staff

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Four-year-old Sebastian Escamilla won the tournament with this 21-3/4-inch catch.

Kids help release the fish back into the resaca.

natural resources and to build memories with their families. This inner city event brings the sport of fishing to children who otherwise may not have the opportunity. Of the 2408 children who participated, 78 percent fished for their first time at this year’s event. By providing children with a rod-n-reel we hope they continue to go out utilize the natural resources offered in our great State of Texas. This year Kids Gone Fish’n reached out to Port Isabel and hosted a free fishing tournament at Pirates Landing Fishing Pier. The event was called Hooked for Life, Kids Gone Fish’n presents the Mayor Joe E. Vega’s Kids Fishing Classic. This was the first time a free kids fishing tournament was hosted for the community. The event attracted over 360 children from the Port Isabel, Laguna Heights, Laguna Vista and South Padre Island area. Free rod-n-reels and t-shirts were provided to the first 200 kids who registered. Once the kids made it down the Longest Fishing Pier in Texas, they baited their hooks and the game was on. Saltwater fish were measured and trophies awarded for the longest species of tournament. The event was a hit with the community, and they look forward to next year’s event. Next year’s Kids Gone Fish’n event is scheduled for May 17, 2014. T F & G

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1911 I have shot. Going into any match, it’s important that I can focus on what I need to focus on, and not have to worry about my pistol functioning as it should.” One of the best male shooters of all time, Leatham has appropriately earned the title of ‘The Great One,’ or ‘TGO’. Having won the USPSA National Champion an incredible 26 times, as well as six IPSC World Championships, 9 NRA Bianchi Cup wins, 8 World Speed Shooting Championships and 6 IDPA Nationals titles, he has cemented his place in the sports shooting history books. As Team Springfield Captain since 1985, has influenced the company in developing superior out of the box competition grade pistols.

Visit the Hooked for Life website at www.hookedforlife.us for updates on other events.

Leatham Wins National Pistol Championship Springfield Armory, the first name in American firearms, congratulates Rob Leatham on his outstanding win at the 2013 USPSA Single Stack National Championship, which took place May 9 - 11 at PASA Park, Barry, Illinois. This win marks the Team Springfield Captain’s 25th USPSA National Championship title and 17th Single Stack National victory. Staying true to the “ruthless consistency” he’s become known for, Leatham competed without penalty. He used superior equipment including a Springfield Armory Custom Shop pistol built specifically for the Single Stack Nationals, to take advantage of allowable weight limits, along with dimensions and other pistol features. Said Leatham, “Tuned to my exacting specifications by Springfield Custom, this pistol is the culmination of many years of refinement and is without question, the best A L M A N A C

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Fish and Game Gear

Chiappa’s 1887 lever action shotgun is a faithful copy of the 1887 Winchester, the first repeating shotgun. With its ability to carry up to seven rounds it was also the first high-capacity shotgun. The Chiappa 1887 is chambered for modern high-pressure 2 3/4 -inch rounds. Fitted with select walnut wood stock, either a case colored receiver and a polished blue barrel and magazine or fully (receiver, barrel and magazine) bushed nickel finish. Internal components are individually machined and hand assembled. The current Chiappa 1887s have 22- and 28-inch barrels. They come with three different chokes and an internal safety that prevents accidental firing until the breechblock is completely closed. The 22-inch compact gun will work for SASS competition, hunting and self defense; and the 28-inch version makes for an excellent and unique field gun. Specifications: • Chambering: 2 3/4-inch 12 gauge • Magazine Capacity: five rounds in 74 |

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tubular magazine • Action: Lever • Overall length: 39 inches (22-inch barrel); 45 inches (28-inch barrel) • Barrel length: 22 and 28-inch

1887 Lever Action Shotgun

• Weight: 9 lbs (22-inch barrel); 9 lbs, 4 ounces approx. (28-inch barrel) • Stock: Walnut • Finish: Case colored receiver and polished blue bbl and magazine or fully brushed nickel • Chokes (included): Full, modified, and improved • MSRP 22-inch barrel: Polished blue$1,333, brushed nickel $1,490 • MSRP 28-inch barrel: Polished blue $1,357, brushed nickel $1,533 For information: MKS Supply, Inc. @ 937-454-0363, www.mkschiappa.com

A Game Changer in Food Preservation Hunters, anglers and meat processors now have the ultimate vacuum sealing system to seal and store large amounts of game and fish with the introduction of the new FoodSaver GameSaver Titanium G800. The heavy duty Titanium G800 is the first FoodSaver GameSaver model that features a 15-inch-long seal strip with two settings. In single sealing mode it F i s h

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can produce up to 100 repetitive seals with no waiting time. The double sealing option provides extra security with an added closure. The Titanium G800 is the perfect machine for avid hunters and anglers who store large amounts of game and fish in the freezer. It’s also ideal for meat processors and lodge owners who seal and store commercial quantities of game and fish. With the 15-inch-wide bag, large portions of meat, such as roasts or backstraps, need not be pared down. For smaller cuts of meat or fish, such as rainbow trout or panfish, Titanium also seals 8-inch- and 11-inch-wide bags. Like all FoodSaver vacuum sealing systems, Titanium removes air from the specially designed FoodSaver bag and creates a quality, air-tight seal that keeps frozen food fresh up to five times longer than traditional storage methods. A hunter who packages and freezes venison using traditional storage methods can expect the meat to stay fresh for up to three months. However, by using a FoodSaver GameSaver vacuum sealing system, frozen venison will stay fresh and provide a delicious meal up to 1 ½ years later. The same holds true for anglers packaging salmon or other fish like trout or grouper. Built for durability and performance, the FoodSaver GameSaver Titanium G800 has an internal dual pump that provides more power than a single pump to pull air out and seal contents tightly. The system

also includes a patented, removable drip tray to capture excess moisture

Photos: Chiappa/MKS supply; Foodsaver

1887 Lever Action Shotgun: More Fun Than You Can Stand

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and to make clean-up easy and convenient. The extra-large, rubberized buttons and easy grip handles make the Titanium G800 simple to operate. The built-in bag cutter makes it easy and convenient to process large jobs. This heavy duty vacuum sealer also has internal storage for an extra bag roll. The Titanium G800 is compatible with all FoodSaver GameSaver vacuum sealing bags, including the exclusive 15-inch-wide Heat Seal Rolls, the Heavy Duty Heat Seal Rolls, the Expandable Heat Seal Rolls and the DAM Bags, with a built-in, liquid blocking strip. Other features of the FoodSaver GameSaver Titanium G800 vacuum sealing system include: • Foam gasket that ensures a good vacuum seal • Bag cutter on lid that slides across to cut bags at any length • Seal button to seal rolls and create custom-sized bags • Vacuum and seal button that vacuums, seals and shuts off automatically • Accessory port for use with a vacuum hose (included) for all FoodSaver brand containers and accessories The FoodSaver GameSaver Titanium G800 will be available August 1, 2013 at Bass Pro Shops, Cabela’s, Gander Mountain and Academy and has a suggested retail price of $449 with a Limited Lifetime Warranty. For more information go online to www.foodsaver.com

Photos: Ameristep/Lightspeed; Flextone

Rattle a Big Buck’s Nerves Flextone Game Calls, the industry leader in natural game sounds introduces the new Black Rack rattling system to their 2013 deer hunting line-up. When it comes to rattling in big bucks, not only do you need the most realistic sound possible, you need to be able to maintain your stealth in T F & G

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the stand or on the ground when Mr. Big comes in looking for the fight. Made with Flextone’s proprietary Bone Core Technology, The Black Rack includes two full, easy to grip racks designed to deliver the realistic crash of bone-against-bone that’s convincing even at longer distances. Plus, from treestand to still-hunting, the black satin finish conceals movement and shine and “flash” that you normally get while rattling with other white or tan plastic rattling antlers. These heavy-duty racks will reach out and grab the attention of that boss buck in your woods. He won’t be able to find the fight, or see the danger. The manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $24.99 For more information on the Black Rack by Flextone Game Calls go to www.flextonegamecalls.com or call 877.993.4868.

Lightspeed Razor

most sturdy design available. And in terms of concealment, it has a uniquely designed shape for optimal concealment. 3601 Lightspeed Razor Ground Blind features include: • Lightweight 8 lbs. portable design • Ideal for crossbow & firearm hunting • Patented Lightspeed single hub frame • Blind Dimensions: 69” shooting width x 98” front width x 67” back width x 60” deep x 60” tall • Pack Dimension: 6” x 50” • Window Openings: 5 • Window System: Mesh/elastic toggle • Available in new Realtree Xtra camouflage pattern • MSRP: $149.99 For more information, call 800-8478269 or visit www.ameristep.com or www.lightspeedoutdoors.com.

Blind Set-Up at Lightspeed Ameristep and Lightspeed Outdoors are pleased to announce the launch of a new innovative line of ground blinds complementing Ameristep’s existing premier ground blind line up.Unique to this product line are the patented Lightspeed Outdoors hub and pole systems that provide a structure, which is both easy-to-use and structurally sound while offering plenty of concealed space. New Patented Lightspeed Technology makes moving your hunting spot easier than ever. Just a quick pull Black on the side-draw hub Rack and your blind is open. In terms of strength, it has the lightest and A L M A N A C

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ONLINE STORE Shop for innovative, new and hard-to-find outdoor gear at

www.FishandGameGear.com &

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Hotspots Focus: Upper Coast

by Capt. Eddie Hernandez

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’m not quite sure how it happened so fast but somehow or another we’ve already made it past the halfway point of 2013. July has snuck up on us and in case you haven’t started already, it is time to give some serious thought to fishing in the Gulf of Mexico. It is time to take advantage of the calm winds and green tides that this month offers. The surf will be a popular and proven destination for many along the coast. Whether you get there by car or boat, wade or drift, the payoff can be huge. Hungry trout and reds looking for an easy meal while cruising the guts are more than willing to take soft plastics, mullet imitations, silver spoons or live bait. We spend

“ It is time to take advantage of calm winds and green tides.

Surf, Rigs Hot in July

a lot of time drifting the first and second guts this month catching hefty stringers of trout as well as some nice reds. When the winds are favorable and the green water has made its way to the surf it’s almost hard not to score big and if you’ve got finger mullet and surface activity you can really up the ante. One of the coolest things about fishing the surf in July is that if you live close enough and the conditions are right you can drive down at daylight, catch a quick limit and be home in plenty of time for your other obligations. Another good option would be to hit the short rigs. The trout bite at the rigs is hitting its stride this month with nice hauls being taken on artificials as well as live bait. Soft plastics like Bass Assassins and Norton Bull Minnow will get the job done as well as rattletraps, spoons, MR51 MirrOLures and topwaters. You do have to be careful throwing your expensive lures though because the Spanish mackerel and all their line cutting teeth can get pretty thick in the

warm green water. For those who prefer to fish with live bait, if you can get your hands on live shrimp or croaker, use it. Both are deadly when it comes to big numbers and big trout in July on the surf and at the rigs. Finger mullet and shad will also work well and are an easy cheap alternative for those who can’t find or afford the others. Most of the fish are caught near structure by casting to or between the legs. It is also a good idea to check your sonar for pods of baitfish or any other unforeseen structure. If the bite slows try casting away from the rig and fish all sides before moving on. A lot of times for whatever reason, the fish will stack up several yards from the rig and you will be back in action.

the bank bite Location: McFaddin Beach Species: Trout, Reds, Jack Crevalle Baits/Lures: Topwaters, soft plastics, mud minnows Best Times: All Day (light winds and green water)

Contact Eddie Hernandez at EHernandez@fishgame.com

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Hotspots Focus: Galveston

by Capt. Mike Holmes

Cause and Effect

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hings outside the immediate Galveston area can cause changes in both the ecology locally, and how we deal with it. My friends Roy and Jan Edwards, who spend much of their lives trying to keep the mouth of the San Bernard River open, alerted me to a meeting held by the US Army Corps of Engineers in Bay City back in January that could affect boaters and fishermen along the whole Texas coast to some extent. The Corps plans to enact stricter regulation of the floodgates on the Brazos River and the locks on the Colorado River. Commercial and emergency traffic will be able to pass through on an on-demand basis, but recreational boats will be restricted to a scheduled opening once an hour, on the hour. Passage by large groups of recreational boats at unscheduled times, as for fishing tournaments, will be at the option of the Lock Master, and only with “reasonable” prior notice. The Brazos floodgates allow or deny access by boats to the “New” Brazos River, as well as passage on the ICW. The Colorado River locks control access to the Colorado River, and East and West Matagorda Bays, as well as the ICW. The stated purpose of this change is to reduce the number of lock openings per day, and thus lengthen the time periods between major maintenance events. I also wonder if the problem of strong currents pushing towards the Brazos River while the mouth of the San Bernard is sanded closed might not have a lot to do with it? Traveling boaters using the ICW, as well as fishermen in these areas need to keep these schedules in mind. July is a “hot” month for offshore fishing, in more than one way, but a predicted red snapper season in Federally regulated T F & G

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waters over nine nautical miles from shore in Texas that will drop from last year’s 45 days to only 27 might cool that off a bit. NMFS continues to hold that snapper are overfished and need more protection, even though the experiences of fishermen on the water conflicts with this view. As Bob Zales of Panama City, Florida, President of the National Charterboat Operators Association stated, “No matter how you put it, when fishery management has over built a fishery to the point that anglers catch almost nothing else, the fish species increase in size 2-3 pounds every year, the stock expands to other oceans – that is success! Yet the season is still closed, and anglers lose because they cannot fish for snapper even as the water turns red with them!” The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries agrees with Capt. Zales and others, and is urging the Gulf States to band together to push for state regulation of fishing in waters off the Gulf Coast, instead of federal control. A spokesman

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stated, “There is no confidence in the federal regulations, so it’s time to draw a line in the sand. We hope our fellow Gulf Coast states will join us in rejecting the federal red snapper dates and limits and move forward with our own interpretation of regional management.” So far, the only reaction from Texas Parks & Wildlife in this direction is a proposed change in state law that would allow wardens to make cases for federal fisheries violations in local JP courts, where any fines collected go to the state, rather than NMFS. This is even though most TPWD officials I have discussed the matter with over the years have been strongly in favor of regional regulation. Because the state bag limit for red snapper is four fish per person, per day, anglers are allowed to dock with four fish, regardless of whether they fished Texas or federal waters, BUT - if they only fished in federal waters, they are only allowed two fish. This changes CONTINUED ON PAGE 79

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Hotspots Focus: Matagorda

by Mike Price

Diversity in Fishing

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uly is a month when Matagorda fishing is at its most diverse. A good example of this was two days of fishing with a group from Texas Outdoor Writers Association. In late July we approached the south shore of West Matagorda Bay, and eased the boat into a channel about half way between Matagorda and Port O’Connor. Jim Darnell, guide Dave Blake and I then walked over the dunes, keeping an eye out for the ever-present rattlesnakes. In the green surf, Jim caught four trout between 14 and 18 inches using a fly rod and Clouser Minnow fly. Dave, fishing with a Texas Tackle Factory, Sabin Machine Red Killer soft plastic on a bait caster rod, and scored

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five trout between 16 and 20 inches. I caught an 18-inch blue fish and a 16-inch trout using spinning tackle and a four-inch glow chartreuse Bass Assassin soft plastic lure. Dave selected the brownish TTF soft plastic because it looked like the brown shrimp that were running. He started fishing in the first gut and then moved to the second gut looking for trout. Dave cast his lure to the top of the sand bar where the waves were breaking, and then let it drop into the trough, working it slowly. He said, “Big trout hang out in the gut and hit it as it drops, they use the gut like a highway. When you catch one, move with them.” We also fished in West Matagorda Bay that day, but the tide was not moving and the water was brown, so we didn’t catch anything. The next day the group of writers fished between 30 and 60 miles offshore. The wind was from the southeast at 5-12 mph, waves were about three feet, and the water

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was very clear and 87°F. Our first stop was a wreck in 120 feet of water. We baited our 8/0 circle hooks with live croaker and dead sardines. Tackle included 100-lb. test leaders, 30-lb. test line and eight ounce sinkers. We each caught our limit of four red snappers. Dave Redwine had never been offshore fishing, and he was getting frustrated because he reeled his line up many times with a bait-less hook. Then he mastered the use of a circle hook. He would feel the bite and slowly raise his rod until he felt the fish swimming with the hook, and then he worked the fish to the surface. The year that we went on this trip, red snapper season extended into July; but this year (2013) the red snapper season was only open in federal waters (more than nine miles offshore) from June 1-12. Therefore, you can’t keep red snappers caught in federal waters in July, 2013. You can keep four red snapper over 15 inches caught in state waters. When you catch red snappers in federal waters, you should return them to the water as quickly as possible. Fish that are bloated with expanded gas because they came up from deeper than 50 feet should be vented before being returned to the water. Other types of snapper such as lane, vermilion, and mangrove can be kept. Our next stop was really wild. We saw a piece of green floating fiberglass about ten feet square. Underneath were tripletail, ling, dolphin and many small fish like bar jack. Jim Darnell hooked and landed a dolphin on his fly rod using a Clouser Minnow, and he also hooked and nearly landed a tripletail on his lightweight bait caster. Tripletail is around in the summer and can be found in West Matagorda Bay as well as 50 miles offshore – where we were. I had never caught one, so I was anxious to give it a go. I put a white soft plastic on a 1/8 oz jig and let it drop under the green fiberglass. A tripletail watched it fall and swam up to it, turned sideways and took the bait. It put up a great fight and I worked it to the side

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Galveston focus of the boat. I did not want to gaff it because I wanted a picture, so I pulled it up, but the leader broke and the tripletail swam away. Water in East and West Matagorda Bays can get really warm in July, making the fish sluggish and forcing them to seek the deepest, coolest water around. In addition the bays can be off color. But the surf is cooler and better oxygenated and loaded with many different species of fish. Offshore fishing is superb in July.

the bank bite The East Matagorda Peninsula is a barrier island between Matagorda and Sargent. It is 22 miles long and accessible by four-wheeldrive vehicle. If you have a two-wheel-drive vehicle, park at the Matagorda jetty park and walk to the beach, pier, or jetty with your fishing tackle. If the water is clear and calm, try wade fishing with artificial lures. If it is rough or off color, try natural bait.

Contact Mike Price at MPrice@fishgame.com

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t CONTINUED FROM PAGE 77 if they fished overnight in federal waters, on a permitted charter vessel with two captains aboard, and have a receipt to verify it. In this case, two days’ limits are allowed to be in possession at the time of reaching shore. In Texas, there is no provision for extra fish when over-nighting, and while the possession limit is twice the daily bag limit, fishermen are not allowed to have more than one day’s limit in possession while still in the act of fishing. Of course, there are other fish in the ocean, as they say, that we can fish for, IF the endangered red snapper haven’t eaten them all as they seem to be doing with the triggerfish!

Galveston Bay that are often good for night-time fishing, when the biting bugs are not too bad. Waders can reach oyster reefs and flats behind the island, and along the Seabrook shoreline. Species: The warm-water gang will be out – speckled trout, reds, flounder, and pan fish – along with trophy sized tarpon and shark on the beachfront. Best Baits: Live bait can be hard to come by in hot weather, unless you catch your own, but “fresh dead” will catch some fish. Chunking artificials is probably more fun, and just about all lure types will catch summer fish at one time or the other. Best Times: Early morning, late evening, and night tide changes offer the most promise.

the bank bite Contact Mike Holmes at MHolmes@fishgame.com.

Location: Beachfront piers and the early morning surf are good places for a pleasant outing. There are also piers on several bayous off

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Hotspots Focus: Rockport

by Capt. Mac Gable

The Art of the Net

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once could throw a cast net to catch bait like nobody’s business, and if I could recall my Pappy’s directions, I might could again. Whatever caused it, that instinctive skill was gone. I started the long process to again becoming a proficient cast-netter. My search to regain my lost cast-net skills took me in many directions, and as is usually the case, down a lot of dead-ends.

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Many think a 3/8-inch mesh is the best all-around net for all types of bait, and others argue that 5/8-inch is best for saltwater bay netting. My personal choice is a 1/2inch mesh that allows for decent catches of menhaden, mullet, and to some extent shrimp. Croaker and piggy perch are caught as well by this size. I like a six-foot net or six-foot radius, which means when thrown, will expand to a 12-foot diameter. Most nets are sized according to radius.

too heavy for you, so adjust accordingly. I think going with the biggest and heaviest net you can handle effectively within reason is your best bet for productive netting. That said, a smaller net thrown correctly will outperform a poorly thrown large net. This is what I call the “Fold-Over Technique.” It’s eight steps and is pretty easy once you walk through it a couple of times. This is for right-handed folks, opposite for southpaws.

Rule of thumb: the wider the mesh and the heavier the weight, the faster it will sink, which usually equates to a better catch. If when holding the net your arms get tired after a minute or so, this usually means it’s

1) Put line loop over your right hand; gather line up.

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2) Hold net at horn until weights are just off the ground or until net is fully stretched out.

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3) Reach up with your right hand, grab the net about six inches below the horn, and with your left hand encircle the net with your thumb and fingers, sliding your hand down the net about halfway. 4) With your left hand loop the net forward grasping into your right hand (weights should be back towards your body and the loop should be forward). Net is now fully in your right hand. 5) From the side of the net closest to your left hand, gather half of the net as close to half way down as you can (you now have half the net in right hand half in your left hand). 6) Now bring your left hand with the net and loop it back into your right hand. The leads should be in front of your right hand hanging about half way down in front of the other half of the leads hanging closest to your body. 7) You will have an upper and a lower portion of leads (again upper portion away from your body and lower portion close to your body). Reach down with your left hand about half way, grasp the outside weighted perimeter line that transitions from upper to lower weights, grab the outer edge and fold that under your right thumb.

a moving tide. This is rattle cork country with Mansfield Maulers and plastic rattlers preferred with fresh cut mullet. Wading the east side of the mouth of Cedar Bayou is good for trout using croaker.

Channel are good for trout and some black drum. Live shrimp free-lined is a good bet here for either species. Aransas Bay — Early morning wades close to Allyns Lake is good for reds using Bone colored Super Spooks or soft plastics in Plum/chartreuse and Limetreuse. Rootbeer-colored plastics are good for trout at the west end of Jaybird Reef. The sheepshead are still just off the rocks/concrete netting of the new spoil area at the mouth of Dunham Bay.

Ayers Bay – A lot of gafftop midbay here, with squid and live shrimp the ticket. A few trout frequent this area as well. Medium hook-ets are best until you know what you’ve hooked. The north shoreline or second chain has some reds with cut perch the ticket. Long casts and patience are key. Try not to reel in until you have a bite due to hang-ups on the shell.

St Charles Bay — With a high tide, the red action is good in the back of Cavasso Creek using Berkley Gulp! Crab under a silent cork. The key to this area is fishing the salt grass edges with much patience. Salt Creek still has some black drum and a few lost flounder with free-lined live shrimp or white grubs on a jig head.

the bank bite FULTON BEACH — A lot of fish hang just off the piers that frequent Fulton Beach Road this time of year. Pick a spot and drag your feet, as there are a lot of rays in this area. Use free-lined shrimp if the wind allows, and be respectful of people’s private property. Big sheepshead, and some monster black drum can be hooked into down this beachfront, and it’s a good long walk/ wade, so pack some water with you.

Carlos Bay — Cedar Reef is a good wade using Berkley Gulp! Shad in black and New Pepper neon glow colors for reds and trout. If the wind allows, run the lures parallel with the reef using a fast retrieve. The shell transition out of Cedar Dugout is good midday for trout.

Contact Capt. Mac Gable at Mac Attack Guide Service, 512-809-2681, 361-790-9601

Mesquite Bay — I like the reefs close to Ayers Dugout early morning with

8) Reach down with your left hand, grab the lower outer edge of the weighted line in your left hand, and hold just over shoulderwidth apart, level with your right hand. With your left foot slightly forward facing your target area, use a smooth and gentle motion to sweep the net forward with the right hand releasing first and your left hand shortly thereafter. This technique is great for wading, as throwing and can be practiced from your knees. It doesn’t get stuff in your mouth or your shoulder wet, and when perfected, you won’t hardly get wet at all. • • • Copano Bay — Italian Bend is good for trout using free-lined croaker. Some red activity close to Turtle Pen with cut mullet and/or menhaden the preferred bait. I like a light Carolina rig in this area. Midday on high tide the reefs adjacent to Smith T F & G

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Hotspots Focus: Lower Coast

by Calixto Gonzales

Pedestrian Ports

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t can be hard for the shore bound angler to find a good spot to fish these days. Housing and condo developments have popped up all over the Texas Coast with the speed and regularity of melanoma and have thus closed off some longtime shoreaccessed wade-fishing spots for anglers who can’t afford even the most modestly-priced boat (or can’t justify the expense in a slowrecovering economy). Even a once out-ofthe-way destination such as Port Mansfield has seen its shorelines populated with summer homes and permanent residences. It’s gotten so the angler a-foot is shut out of his pastime. These pedestrian fishermen can take heart, however. There are still a few spots that the land-locked wader can still get to, however, and they do provide excellent fishing. One of the most popular bank accessible wading spots on the Lower Laguna Madre, for example, is the Community Bar in Port Mansfield. Wade fishermen can gain access to the area via Fred Stone Park, which is adjacent to the King Ranch. There is a pedestrian entrance set up on the ranch fence line that allows for fishermen to walk along the shoreline for the ¾ of a mile to the Bar’s general area (that’s just a good stretch of the legs for the average Texan). Over the years, rainfall and floods have created a muddy, boggy ditch that separates the access point from the parking lot. Some resourceful fishermen place pallets and boards across the ditch, but it may be easier to wade in and around the end of the fence line and back onto shore. Then you can tramp the rest of the way on dry land. Regardless of how you reach Community Bar (boaters can also anchor up on top of the shallow bar and disembark to fish the

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edges), you can wade out toward the bar and start fishing. Don’t head straight out into deeper water immediately. It doesn’t hurt to work parallel to the shoreline in knee-deep water, especially on a high tide. Redfish and trout will cruise close in during low-light conditions. Work the area with smaller top waters such as a Spook, Jr., Badonk-ADonk or, my favorite, or my new favorite, a Mirrolure Mirromullet. Gold spoons such as ¼ ounce Johnson Sprite or a #14 Tony or a Nemire Red Ripper by Katchmore are also excellent choices for working the early morning shallows. After you’ve worked the area thoroughly, then you turn you attention to deeper water. And there is plenty of deeper water. Between the shoreline and Community Bar is a deep gut that speckled trout use as a migration route up and down Laguna Madre. The wide gut deepens until you are in neck-deep water, which can make a fisherman pretty nervous. It’s easy to spot where the really deep stuff is, though, because local commercial crabbers set their traps at the bottom of the gut, and the white buoys make excellent channel markers. Set up in waist-deep water and fan cast into the gut to prospect for trout. The classic shrimp/popping cork rig is the top fish producer in the area, but many fishermen who would rather avoid lugging a bait bucket switch over the either a Gulp! Shrimp in Nuclear Chicken or Glow. Both are effective under a popping cork or Mansfield Mauler. You can also use a ¼ ounce Kelly Wiggler Ball shrimp tail rigged on a 1/8th ounce Kelly Diamond Head or Vudu Shrimp. Make sure your leader is 18-24 inches long, and that your rod is long enough (7-7 ½ feet) to facilitate long casts into the gut. If you prefer eschewing the floats, shad tails such as the Kelly Wigglers Ball Tail or H&H Queen Cocahoe are good choices to fish the gut. Lipless crank baits such as the Rat-L-Trap in gold/black are also excellent options for the gut, and they help you cover a lot of water quickly. A suspending Catch F i s h

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2000 can also be productive Fan cast an area, and if you don’t find any fish, move a few feet to your left or right, and keep working the deeper water until you hit pay dirt. Some adventurous fishermen are willing to negotiate the deeper water to cross the gut and reach the actual Community Bar. Then they will either fish on top of the grassy top for redfish (with gold spoons being the #1 choice), or they turn around and fish the edge of the depth break. The latter method is quite popular because it allows you to fish the deeper water with the wind at your back—and there will almost always be a stiff breeze pushing off the Gulf of Mexico by the middle of the day. A word of caution: Community Bar’s close proximity to Port Mansfield means that it experiences heavy boat traffic, especially on the weekends. For the most part, boaters are considerate enough to give the area wide berth. There are a few slobs that will run close to the shoreline, regardless of the number of waders in the area. They should pay attention to their surroundings, but some don’t. It never hurts to be proactive and dress in bright colors in order to stand out, especially if you’re in chest-deep water. Depending on some of these idiots to do the right thing is an exercise in futility and can be very dangerous. No one has been hurt yet, but you don’t want to be the first. Don’t let those boaters deter you though. The fishing around Community Bar can be quite good. Keep a sharp eye, and you’ll be fine. You might have a hard time walking back out though, if the fish are there…

the bank bite Location: Isla Blanca Park Surf Species: Speckled Trout, Redfish Tips: Fish shell areas with live bait or soft plastics.

Contact Calixto Gonzales at CGonzales@fishgame.com

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UPPER GULF COAST

Run a Short Route for Sabine Trout by GEORGE KNIGHTEN gtkphoto@yahoo.com LOCATION: Sabine Pass HOTSPOT: Short Rigs GPS: N29 38.884 W93 42.237 (29.648067, -93.70395) SPECIES: speckled trout BEST BAITS: soft plastics in Glow/chartreuse, Pearl/chartreuse, Green Tomato, Strawberry/white CONTACT: Captain Eddie Hernandez ehernandez@fishgame.co TIPS: Trout hold around the cover provided by the structure of short rigs. Anchor uptide of the legs and fish the mid-depths. If trout are holding deeper, use heavier jigheads to get down to them. Use fluorocarbon or braided line. There are more sharp cutoffs than the barnacle-encrusted legs to worry about. LOCATION: Sabine Lake HOTSPOT: East Pass GPS: N29 58.920 W93 47.135 (29.982, -93.785583) SPECIES: speckled trout BEST BAITS: soft plastics in chartreuse, Glow/ chartreuse, Pearl/chartreuse CONTACT: Captain Eddie Hernandez ehernandez@fishgame.co TIPS: Fish the deeper water and near the bottom for good numbers of speckled trout. “Glowing” soft plastics are good choices because they tend to stand out a bit more and capture the fish’s attention. Swim lures in the current, or cast it around and under nervous bait. Use larger (1/4-ounce) jighead for better control in the current. Be sure to get a Louisiana license if you are going to cross into Cajun territory (three-day permits are available for a nominal fee).

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GPS COORDINATES are provided in two formats: “Decimal Degrees” (degrees.degrees) and “Degrees and Minutes” sometimes called “GPS Format” (degrees minutes. minutes). Examples (for Downtown Austin): Decimal Degrees: N30.2777, W97.7379; Degrees and Minutes: N30 16.6662, W97 44.2739. Consult your manual for information specific to your GPS device.

LOCATION: Galveston Bay HOTSPOT: Campbell’s Bayou GPS: N29 19.66278 W94 53.52036 (29.327713, -94.892006) SPECIES: redfish BEST BAITS: live shrimp, soft plastic lures CONTACT: Captain George Knighten 832-310-9146 gtkphoto@yahoo.com galvestonbayguideservice.net TIPS: This area has lots of oyster shell and can be waded or drifted. A great area for topwaters like the top dog when you’re wading. When you’re drifting work the water from top to bottom with soft plastics like the 5” soft mullet from MirrOlure. Location: Galveston East Bay HOTSPOT: Hanna’s Reef GPS: N29 28.703 W94 45.703 (29.478383, -94.761717) SPECIES: Speckled trout BEST BAITS: Texas Trout Killers in Red Shad and Limetreuse CONTACT: Captain George Knighten 832-310-9146 gtkphoto@yahoo.com galvestonbayguideservice.net TIPS: Fish any of the mid-bay reefs that are about 4-6 feet deep. Bounce the lure along the bottom. Location: Galveston Bay HOTSPOT: Halfmoon Reef GPS: N29 24.023, W94 50.632 (29.400383, -94.843867) F ish

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SPECIES: Speckled trout BEST BAITS: Texas Trout Killers in Red Shad and Limetreuse CONTACT: Captain George Knighten 832-310-9146 gtkphoto@yahoo.com galvestonbayguideservice.net TIPS: Try Halfmoon Reef when the trout are deeper, 6 – 9 feet deep. LOCATION: West Matagorda Bay HOTSPOT: Cotton’s Bayou GPS: N28 30.602 W96 12.603 (28.510033, -96.21005) SPECIES: speckled trout BEST BAITS: live bait; soft plastics in chartreuse patterns, Plum/chartreuse; Gulp! baits CONTACT: Captain George Knighten 832-310-9146 gtkphoto@yahoo.com galvestonbayguideservice.net TIPS: Fish the shorelines and grassbeds with topwaters early in the morning. Hop soft baits along the bottom and near sand or shell later in the day. Trout come up to feed on baitfishes that are holding near the vegetation. LOCATION: West Matagorda Bay HOTSPOT: Jetties GPS: N28 35.666 W95 59.000 (28.594433, -95.983333) SPECIES: speckled trout BEST BAITS: live bait; soft plastics in chartreuse patterns, Plum/chartreuse; Gulp! baits CONTACT: Captain George Knighten 832-310-9146 gtkphoto@yahoo.com galvestonbayguideservice.net TIPS: The jetties are always good for trout, especially the deeper holes during the heat of July. Fish will be holding in deeper, or near the rocks where current eddies push bait down and past them for easy pickings. Live bait is always good, as are soft plastics and Gulp! tails in highvis colors. Use a 1/4-ounce jighead with lures, and free-line live baits with as little weight as possible

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to prevent snags. LOCATION: East Matagorda Bay HOTSPOT: Beachfront GPS: N28 43.213 W95 41.828 (28.720217, -95.697133) SPECIES: speckled trout BEST BAITS: live bait, soft plastics CONTACT: Captain George Knighten 832-310-9146 gtkphoto@yahoo.com galvestonbayguideservice.net TIPS: Soft southeasterlies and green water to the beach create “cupcake” conditions for fishermen seeking surf-running trout. Experienced fishermen anchor beyond the third bar and fish the guts for the fat dime-silver specks that roam the beachfront in July. Watch for diving birds or flitting bait to tip you off to the presence of fish. Keep your weather radio on, too. You never know when a summer squall may pop up and you need to head for cover. LOCATION: East Matagorda Bay HOTSPOT: Beachfront GPS: N28 43.213 W95 41.828 SPECIES: redfish BEST BAITS: live bait, soft plastics, spoons CONTACT: Captain George Knighten 832-310-9146 gtkphoto@yahoo.com galvestonbayguideservice.net TIPS: redfish also roam the beachfront. When the wind lies down and small waves prevail, fishermen can have quite a time with spoons and soft plastics. If the water greens up nicely, then the fishing can be quite memorable. Live bait also works quite well.

MIDDLE GULF COAST

Super Reds on Aransas Bay by GEORGE KNIGHTEN gtkphoto@yahoo.com LOCATION: Aransas Bay HOTSPOT: Super Flats GPS: N27 53.782 W97 2.684 (27.896367, -97.044733) SPECIES: redfish BEST BAITS: live bait; topwaters; gold spoons; T F & G

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(28.226516, -96.948338) SPECIES: speckled trout BEST BAITS: topwaters and soft plastics in dark patterns; live bait CONTACT: Captain Mac Gable 512-809-2681, 361-790-9601 mgable@fishgame.com TIPS: The north end of St. Charles becomes an excellent choice as summer rumbles along. Trout stack up on the drop-offs along the deeper reefs. Topwaters early in the morning can cause blowups that get the heart pumping. Live baits or soft plastics can be fished under popping corks, or free-lined if the fish are near the bottom.

soft plastics in Avocado/chartreuse, Motor Oil/ chartreuse, Pumpkinseed/chartreuse CONTACT: Captain Mac Gable 512-809-2681, 361-790-9601 mgable@fishgame.com TIPS: Wade the shorelines of San Jose Island early for redfish. Topwaters and gold spoons can be fished early. As the day progresses, turn your attention to deeper water (3- to 4-foot) and dropoffs. Live shrimp or mullet are tough to beat, but soft plastics and the gold spoon get more than their fair share of reds. LOCATION: Aransas Bay HOTSPOT: Oil Rigs GPS: N28 2.124 W97 00.194 (28.0354, -97.003233) SPECIES: speckled trout BEST BAITS: Gulp! Shrimp/float; live croaker, pinfish; Gulp! Swimming Shad CONTACT: Captain Mac Gable 512-809-2681, 361-790-9601 mgable@fishgame.com TIPS: The wellhead and shell pads that dot the deep water of Aransas Bay are trout magnets. Anchor up-current of a pad or head and drift baits and lures back to the trout that sit in ambush in eddies and breaks, waiting. Live croaker and pinfish (piggy perch) are very good choices, as is a large white shrimp when you can find them. Fish jigs across the current and let them swing into ambush points.

LOWER GULF COAST

Baffin Specks Get the Point by CALIXTO GONZALES cgonzales@fishgame.com LOCATION: Baffin Bay HOTSPOT: East Kelberg Point GPS: N27 16.161 W97 30.28398 (27.269350, -97.504733) SPECIES: speckled trout BEST BAITS: Topwaters in dark patterns, chartreuse; BassAssassins in Opening Night, gold/ glitter, or, live croaker CONTACT: Captain Mike Hart 361-449-7441 TIPS: Use topwaters early. Fish deeper water as the day warms up. Use live croaker with a Texas Rattlin Rig when fishing deep water. Watch for birds. Plastics should be fished near the bottom.

LOCATION: Aransas Bay HOTSPOT: Hog Island Cut GPS: N27 53.686 W97 06.453 (27.89477, -97.107553) SPECIES: redfish BEST BAITS: live bait; topwaters; gold spoons; soft plastics in Avocado/chartreuse, Motor Oil/ chartreuse, Pumpkinseed/chartreuse CONTACT: Captain Mac Gable 512-809-2681, 361-790-9601 mgable@fishgame.com TIPS: Again, wade near the shoreline early in the morning. Topwaters work well here, especially when the fish are cruising around in 2 to 3 feet of water. Fish a gold spoon with your rod tip held high and skim it over the tops of grass and shell. Very little action is needed, but an occasional tick of the rod tip might trigger a strike from a following fish.

LOCATION: Port Mansfield HOTSPOT: Community Bar GPS: N26 35.14398 W97 25.644 (26.585733, -97.427400) SPECIES: redfish BEST BAITS: Spook, Jr; in baby trout, Bone, Sand Eel, Jr; in LSU CONTACT: Captain Danny Neu 979-942-0165 TIPS: Fish the top of the sandbar or close to shoreline. Watch for tailing reds. Use noisy topwaters if water is off-colored. Live bait is always very good, too. Watch for wade-fishermen.

LOCATION: Rockport HOTSPOT: St. Charles Bay GPS: N28 13.591 W96 56.900 A L M A N A C

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Texas Hotspots HOTSPOT: North of Arroyo GPS: N26 25.67814 W97 24.34806 (26.427969, -97.405801) SPECIES: black drum BEST BAITS: live shrimp or on a jighead or under a popping cork, Gulp! shrimp under popping cork CONTACT: Captain Richard Lopez 956-207-4715 TIPS: By July, there is a huge school of black drum roaming the bay. If you locate them, use a live or fresh shrimp under a popping cork or on a 1/4-ounce jighead. Gulp! Shrimp are also effective. These 3 to 5-pound drum are good sport. LOCATION: South Padre Island HOTSPOT: Cullen Channel GPS: N26 15.159 W97 17.27298 (26.252650, -97.287883) SPECIES: flounder BEST BAITS: live shrimp, Gulp! shrimp in Nuclear Chicken, Lime Tiger, soft plastics in Chartreuse patterns CONTACT: Captain Jimmy Martinez 956-551-9581 TIPS: Fish the edges and weedlines. Most flounder will be holding right on the drop-off edge. When using artificials, use a 1/4-ounce jighead. Kelly Wiggler shrimptails in rootbeer/chart are ideal. Use a live bait on fish-finder rigs. LOCATION: Arroyo Colorado HOTSPOT: Green Island GPS: N26 23.61798 W97 19.01022 (26.393633, -97.316837) SPECIES: speckled trout BEST BAITS: Topwaters, cut ballyhoo or mullet, live shrimp or piggy perch under a popping cork, Gulp! shrimp under a popping cork CONTACT: Captain Richard Lopez 956-207-4715 TIPS: Work the windward side potholes for speckled trout holding around potholes. If there are light breezes, try a topwater. Otherwise, live bait and plastics under a popping cork are good.

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LOCATION: South Padre Island HOTSPOT: Old Causeway GPS: N26 4.2744 W97 11.37648 (26.071240, -97.189608) SPECIES: mangrove snap BEST BAITS: live shrimp or finfish, fresh shrimp CONTACT: Captain Richard Cadengo 956-434-2521 TIPS: Anchor and cast toward the in deeper water. The larger mangroves are off the pilings in the holes formed by eddies. Live shrimp or fresh shrimp freelined work well. The really big ones will nail a mullet or pinfish. LOCATION: Lower Laguna Madre HOTSPOT: Mexequita Flats GPS: N26 3.78096 W97 11.33868 (26.063016, -97.188978) SPECIES: redfish BEST BAITS: live bait, cut bait; Mirrolure 5M in Bone, red/white, Kelly Wigglers in mullet, Cockroach, gold spoons/red teasers CONTACT: Captain Jimmy Martinez 956-551-9581 TIPS: Drift the long flat on an incoming tide. Use Old-school prop baits early in the morning. Fish live or cut bait under a popping cork. Kelly Wigglers on 1/8th-ounce heads are effective too.

PINEY WOODS

Toledo Bass on a Bender by BOB HOOD bhood@fishgame.com

LOCATION: South Bay HOTSPOT: Mangroves GPS: N26 0.8046 W97 14.87232 (26.013410, -97.247872) SPECIES: snook

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BEST BAITS: Topwaters early, Bass assassins in Pearl, gold glitter CONTACT: Captain Jimmy Martinez 956-551-9581 TIPS: Fish the treeline with topwaters. If snook are short striking, use an Assassin-type plastic on a weighted worm hook. Use live finger mullet unweighted and with circle hooks. Use a heavy leader, 25-pounds or better.

LOCATION: Toledo Bend HOTSPOT: Silvia Bend Area GPS: N31 38.9337 T e x a S

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W93 49.14834 (31.648895, -93.819139) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Topwaters, Rat-LTraps, spoons, crankbaits CONTACT: Greg Crafts 936-368-7151 gregcrafts@yahoo.com toledobendguide.com TIPS: Main lake points will be active for largemouth and white bass. Typically, early morning and late evening will be prime feeding times. Work topwater plugs, Rat-L-Traps, crankbaits, spoons and plastics shallow and back out to deeper water if needed. LOCATION: Toledo Bend HOTSPOT: Green Willow Point GPS: N31 46.15398 W93 49.94898 (31.769233, -93.832483) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Topwater lures, crankbaits, RatL-Traps, soft plastics CONTACT: Greg Crafts 936-368-7151 gregcrafts@yahoo.com toledobendguide.com TIPS: In July the main lake points will be active with schooling activity for both largemouth bass and white bass. Early mornings and late evenings typically are prime feeding times. Work topwater plugs, Rat-L-Traps, shallow-diving crankbaits, and plastics. LOCATION: Lake O the Pines HOTSPOT: Johnson Creek GPS: N32 47.11026 W94 32.60142 (32.785171, -94.543357) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Plastic worms, crankbaits, topwaters CONTACT: Sonny Kopech 903-592-8221 Marion.Kopech@HDSupply.com TIPS: Use topwaters early along the banks and shallow off the points. Once the sun rises, move out and work the drop-offs with plastic worms and crankbait. Fish the channels under the bridge during the mid-day hours. LOCATION: Livingston HOTSPOT: Point Blank GPS: N30 44.85102

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W95 12.15426 (30.747517, -95.202571) SPECIES: white bass BEST BAITS: Jigging slabs, Topwaters, spoons, Pet Spoons, Tsunami Zombie Eyes CONTACT: David S. Cox 936-291-9602 dave@palmettoguideservice.com palmettoguideservice.com TIPS: Look for surfacing white bass off the points in this area early and late with topwaters. During the day, move out to the old Highway 190 submerged bridge and fish 11 to 15 feet deep with Slabs, spoons and Tsunami Zombie Eyes. LOCATION: Livingston HOTSPOT: Dam Area GPS: N30 37.97598, W95 0.99996 (30.632933, -95.016666) SPECIES: striper BEST BAITS: live shad, 1 1/4-ounce white Slabs, spoons, Tsunami Holographic Swim Shad CONTACT: David S. Cox 936-291-9602 dave@palmettoguideservice.com palmettoguideservice.com

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TIPS: Bounce 1 1/4-ounce white Slabs or spoons off the bottom and look for the strikes to come when the baits are falling. Troll a hot pink/gold 4-inch Swim Shad behind a No.10 Jet Driver.

(30.380703, -95.590405) SPECIES: catfish BEST BAITS: Primos stinkbait CONTACT: Richard Tatsch 936-291-1277 admin@fishdudetx.com fishdudetx.com TIPS: By now the catfish have finished eating all the shad they can along the bulkheads after the shad spawn. They are back in deep water along channels. Find a stump near a channel, chum with range cubes and the strikes should come about 30 minutes later.

LOCATION: Lake Fork HOTSPOT: Wolf Creek GPS: N32 50.719 W95, 32.160 (32.845317, -95.536) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Zara Spook, buzzbaits, poppers, shallow- to medium-diver baits in shad patterns; Tiki Sticks in Green Pumpkin, Watermelon, and Watermelon Red CONTACT: Ricky Vandergriff 903-561-7299 ricky@rickysguideservice.com rickysguideservice.com TIPS: Work topwaters over the grass in Rodgers Creek and Wolf Creek. Use crankbaits and wacky rigs in same area.

LOCATION: Caddo HOTSPOT: Alligator Bayou GPS: N32 43.27506 W94 5.40354 (32.721251, -94.090059) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Plastic worms, V&M Slippin Jig, V&M Porkshad CONTACT: Paul Keith 318-455-3437 caddoguide1@att.net caddolakefishing.com

LOCATION: Conroe HOTSPOT: Main Lake GPS: N30 22.84218 W95 35.4243

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Texas Hotspots TIPS: Use Texas-rigged plastic worms along the edges of the hydrilla in this area and Big Cypress Bayou. Also try using heavy punch jigs and fish the grass on the drop-offs.

PRAIRIES & LAKES

Tawakoni Stripers Take Their Humps by BOB HOOD bhood@fishgame.com LOCATION: Tawakoni HOTSPOT: Lower Lake Humps GPS: N32 51.711 W95 55.92078 (32.861850, -95.932013) SPECIES: hybrid striper BEST BAITS: 4-inch Sassy Shads, Slabs, topwaters CONTACT: Tony Parker 903-348-1619 tawakonifishing@yahoo.com tonyparkerfishing.com TIPS: You can catch hybrid striped bass and white bass here by jigging Slabs and Sassy Shads or casting topwater lures when the fish are surfacing, which usually is early. Keep and eye out for feeding birds to lead you to the feeding activity of the fish. LOCATION: Whitney HOTSPOT: McCowan Flats GPS: N31 55.42464 W97 24.50904

(31.923744, -97.408484) SPECIES: white bass BEST BAITS: Slabs CONTACT: Randy Routh 817-822-5539 teamredneck@hotmail.com teamredneck.net TIPS: The thermocline has set in the white bass are relating to a reaction strike. Bounce chartreuse 1-ounce slabs on ledges above the thermocline at about 20 feet. Early morning is best. Areas to look for are the ledges from the island to McCowan Flats. LOCATION: Lewisville HOTSPOT: Standing Timber GPS: N33 6.28422 W96 59.11242 (33.104737, -96.985207) SPECIES: catfish BEST BAITS: Secret 7 dip bait or punch bait CONTACT: Bobby Kubin 817-455-2894 bobby@bobby-catfishing.com bobby-catfishing.com TIPS: For channel catfish, bait out several spots in standing timber in the main-lake area in 15-20 feet of water using soured grain or range cubes. Punch baits will result in good catches of 1-5pound fish. Set the hook as soon as you detect a bite. LOCATION: Lewisville HOTSPOT: Main Lake Flats GPS: N33 8.14752 W96 56.96496 (33.135792, -96.949416) SPECIES: catfish

BEST BAITS: Fresh gizzard and threadfin shad or cut buffalo CONTACT: Bobby Kubin 817-455-2894 bobby@bobby-catfishing.com bobby-catfishing.com TIPS: The bluecat bite is good drifting the main lake flats with fresh shad or cut buffalo on a Santee-Cooper rig with 3-0 or 5-0 circle hook. If you are after bigger cats go to an 8-0 circle hook. Drift at right at or less than 0.5 m.p.h. LOCATION: Palestine HOTSPOT: Flat Creek GPS: N32 12.54096 W95 31.7109 (32.209016, -95.528515) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Spinnerbaits, Wake Baits, Manns 1 Minus crankbait CONTACT: Sonny Kopech 903-592-8221 Marion.Kopech@HDSupply.com TIPS: The fish are cruising the flats feeding on shad and other baitfish. Some schooling action is likely to be found during the early morning and late evening hours, so keep and eye out for any bird activity. LOCATION: Fayette County HOTSPOT: West Ridge Hump GPS: N29 55.9212 W96 44.781 (29.932020, -96.746350) SPECIES: catfish BEST BAITS: stinkbait, worms CONTACT: Weldon Kirk 979-229-3103 weldon_edna@hotmail.com FishTalesGuideService.com TIPS: The hump is 4-5 feet deep. Anchor on the hump or close to shore. Use tight line with egg sinker or drift shallow with a cork along shoreline. Chum close to the boat, putting out a marker over the chum so you can fish right on top of it. LOCATION: Lavon HOTSPOT: Tickey Creek GPS: N33 6.72168 W96 29.56632 (33.112028, -96.492772) SPECIES: crappie BEST BAITS: Medium minnows CONTACT: Billy Kilpatrick

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214-232-7847 straightlineguide@yahoo.com straightlineguide.com TIPS: Night fishing is best at this time of the year, especially during the full moon phase _ one week prior, one week after full and after the moon is gone. Crappie are holding at 16-24 feet suspended 1-2 feet off the bottom. Expect subtle bites. LOCATION: Gibbons Creek. HOTSPOT: Dam Rocky Point GPS: N30 36.6822 W96 3.996 (30.611370, -96.066600) SPECIES: crappie BEST BAITS: Minnows, jigs CONTACT: Weldon Kirk 979-229-3103 weldon_edna@hotmail.com FishTalesGuideService.com TIPS: Submerged stumps, rocks, trees and brush are here. A fish light after dark also helps produce catches. Use minnows under a slip cork, fishing close to the bottom, then experiment with the depth until fish are located. LOCATION: Cooper

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HOTSPOT: Harpers Crossing GPS: N33 18.63714 W95 39.04248 (33.310619, -95.650708) SPECIES: hybrid striper BEST BAITS: Sassy Shads, spoons CONTACT: Tony Parker 903-348-1619 tawakonifishing@yahoo.com tonyparkerfishing.com TIPS: I use my electronics to find schools of hybrids on many underwater humps such as near Pelican Point and Harpers Crossing. When I locate schools, I either drift over them and fish 1 1/2-ounce spoons vertical or cast a 4-inch Sassy Shad to them.

979-229-3103 weldon_edna@hotmail.com FishTales-Guide Service.com TIPS: Anchor in this area. Tight line using ghost minnows or shad. If using lures, try to imitate shad colors. Sassy Shad trailers work well. Watch for birds feeding. Move to the fish with a trolling motor to prevent spooking them if they are surfacing. LOCATION: Texoma HOTSPOT: Preston Bend GPS: N33 53.8542 W96 38.18748 (33.897570, -96.636458) SPECIES: striper BEST BAITS: Chug Bugs, Sassy Shad jigs, Slabs, Pencil Poppers, Zara Spooks CONTACT: Bill Carey 877-786-4477 bigfish@striperexpress.com striperexpress.com TIPS: Fish the topwaters early along the points for schools of stripers following shad. During the mid-day hours, move out to the edge of the river channel and jig slabs, spoons and Shad jigs. Try different depths to locate the stripers.

LOCATION: Somerville HOTSPOT: South Schooling Area GPS: N30 18.639 W96 34.206 (30.310650, -96.570100) SPECIES: white bass BEST BAITS: Ghost minnows, shad, small RatL-Traps CONTACT: Weldon Kirk

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Texas Hotspots LOCATION: Aquilla HOTSPOT: Dam Riprap GPS: N31 54.14166 W97 11.97546 (31.902361, -97.199591) SPECIES: white bass BEST BAITS: Little Georges, Rat-L-Traps, topwaters CONTACT: Randy Routh 817-822-5539 teamredneck01@hotmail.com teamredneck.net TIPS: White bass are running along the riprap chasing shad. Use chrome and blue Rat-L-Traps and silver Little Georges and topwaters early, After the sun gets up, move over to the Bubbler and enjoy fast action on white bass and largemouth bass. LOCATION: Palestine HOTSPOT: Main Lake Docks GPS: N32 5.75658 W95 26.78502 (32.095943, -95.446417) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Plastic worms, creature baits CONTACT: Ricky Vandergriff 903-561-7299 ricky@rickysguideservice.com rickysguideservice.com TIPS: Rig the plastic worms on a Carolina rig or use creature baits in Watermelon-red colors. Fish all the boat docks you can find but also target any structure you come across between the docks such as stickups and rock retaining walls. Fish points late. LOCATION: Palestine HOTSPOT: 155 Bridge Brush Piles GPS: N32 8.6616 W95 28.55412 (32.144360, -95.475902) SPECIES: crappie BEST BAITS: Minnows, jigs CONTACT: Ricky Vandergriff 903-561-7299 ricky@rickysguideservice.com rickysguideservice.com TIPS: Fish 1/32-ounce jigs or small minnows vertically just above the brush piles. Feel for the brush with your bait and then raise it just above the brush. Expect light bites. Move to another brush pile if the action is slow.

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LOCATION: Richland Chambers HOTSPOT: Highway 287 Bridge Columns GPS: N32 0.5385 W96 11.94714 (32.008975, -96.199119) SPECIES: crappie BEST BAITS: Minnows CONTACT: Royce and Adam Simmons 903-389-4117 royce@gonefishin.biz www.gonefishin.biz TIPS: Use small minnows and fish the bridge columns at 20-30 feet depths. The early-morning low-light conditions and night fishing are when most of the crappie are caught but often the midday bite during the hottest periods can yield some nice catches. LOCATION: Richland Chambers HOTSPOT: Fisherman’s Point Marina GPS: N31 56.45394 W96 7.41012 (31.940899, -96.123502) SPECIES: white bass BEST BAITS: Tiny Torpedo, Rat-L-Trap CONTACT: Royce and Adam Simmons 903-389-4117 royce@gonefishin.biz www.gonefishin.biz TIPS: July is the month white bass begin a topwater feeding frenzy. Fish the main lake south shoreline from Fisherman’s Point Marina to Ferguson Point. Look for terns and egrets picking up baitfish. Use a clear Tiny Torpedo or bluechrome Rat-L-Trap. LOCATION: Cedar Creek HOTSPOT: Upper Lake Area

LOCATION: Richland Chambers

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HOTSPOT: Highway 287 Bridge Columns GPS: N32 0.5385 W96 11.94714 (32.008975, -96.199119) SPECIES: crappie BEST BAITS: Minnows CONTACT: Royce and Adam Simmons 903-389-4117 royce@gonefishing.biz www.gonefishing.biz TIPS: Use small minnows and fish the bridge columns at 20-30 feet depths. The early-morning low-light conditions and night fishing are when most of the crappie are caught but often the midday bite during the hottest periods can yield some nice catches.

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GPS: N32 22.58784 W96 10.20432 (32.376464, -96.170072) SPECIES: catfish BEST BAITS: Punch bait CONTACT: Jason Barber 903-603-2047 kingscreekadventures@yahoo.com www.kingcreekadventures.com TIPS: Travel carefully here. There are lots of limbs underwater. Move from stump to stump in 6-15 feet of water and tie up. Fish the bait just off the bottom straight down. The bites may be light so set the hook at any steady line or rod tip movement.

PANHANDLE

Dam It for Possum Stripers by BOB HOOD bhood@fishgame.com LOCATION: Possum Kingdom HOTSPOT: Dam Area GPS: N32 52.21698 W98 25.6779 (32.870283, -98.427965) SPECIES: striper BEST BAITS: live shad, Sassy Shad, Curly-Tail soft plastic CONTACT: Dean Heffner 940-329-0036 fav7734@aceweb.com TIPS: Live shad is best but a Sassy Shad or Curly-Tail worm will draw strikes from the stump patch to the dam overflow at 24 feet. I like to fish deeper water at night with a green light to bring in baitfish. Downrigging for stripers also works well here. LOCATION: Possum Kingdom HOTSPOT: Bee Creek GPS: N32 51.1833 W98 32.1618 (32.853055, -98.536030) SPECIES: white bass BEST BAITS: Topwater lures, Rat-L-Traps, Slabs CONTACT: Dean Heffner 940-329-0036

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fav7734@aceweb.com TIPS: This area is away from most boat traffic and provides a great place for white bass to corner shad. I set at the mouth of the creek early with a topwater in hand to await the action. Some hybrid stripers also can be found here under the white bass.

BIG BEND

Amistad Bass in the Rough by BOB HOOD bhood@fishgame.com LOCATION: Amistad HOTSPOT: Rough Canyon GPS: N29 36.31098 W100 58.377 (29.605183, -100.972950) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Pop Rs, buzzbaits, Zara Spooks CONTACT: Stan Gerzsenyl 830-768-3648 stan@amistadbass.com amistadbass.com TIPS: Fish topwaters from the main lake grass beds to the backs of the creeks. Zara Spooks are my favorites but Pop Rs and buzzbaits also can be effective. Look for schooling fish throughout the day.

HILL COUNTRY

Set Sail for Canyon Bass

CONTACT: Robert Amaya 956-765-1442 robertsfishntackle@gmail.com robertsfishntackle.com TIPS: Fish the brush here early with topwater lures, Texas-rigged plastic worms and spinnerbaits. Carolina-rigged soft plastics also work well off the roadbed and in the openings where the water drops off from five to 8-12 feet. Also fish nearby humps.

LOCATION: Granger HOTSPOT: Main Lake Brushpiles GPS: N30 42.49554 W97 22.3479 (30.708259, -97.372465) SPECIES: white bass BEST BAITS: Slab spoons CONTACT: Tommy Tidwell 512-365-7761 crappie1@hotmail.com www.gotcrappie.com TIPS: White bass are feeding on shad roaming the main lake points. Sometimes they can be found by seeing shad jumping out of the water, but most of the time sonar units are needed to locate them. They should be close to the bottom most of the time. LOCATION: Canyon Lake HOTSPOT: The Dam GPS: N29 52.12476 W98 12.07182 (29.868746, -98.201197) SPECIES: striper BEST BAITS: Striper jigs CONTACT: Steve Nixon 210-573-1230 steve@sanantoniofishingguides.com sanantoniofishingguides.com TIPS: Look for striped bass to be deep (50-80 feet). They will be suspending over the river channel and close to the dam. Trolling the jigs on downriggers around this area produces lots of catches.

SOUTH TEXAS PLAINS

by BOB HOOD bhood@fishgame.com LOCATION: Canyon Lake HOTSPOT: Sail Boat Marina Area GPS: N29 53.9862 W98 14.148 (29.899770, -98.235800) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Berkley Ring Worm, Missile Bait D-Bombs, Bass Kandi Stik, Picasso Spinnerbait CONTACT: Kandie Candelaria 210-823-2153 kandie@gvtc.com T F & G

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TIPS: Start at the point on the right and work your way in with a Berkley Ring Worm with 1/4-oz. Picasso Tungsten weight Texas rigged. Fish the area thoroughly. The bites may be light. A small crawfish-colored crankbait also is good along the rocks here.

Hit the Road at Falcon by BOB HOOD bhood@fishgame.com LOCATION: Falcon Lake HOTSPOT: Alejandrejas Roadbed GPS: N26 44.22498 W99 11.9439 (26.737083, -99.199065) SPECIES: largemouth bass BEST BAITS: Jigs, plastic worms, spinnerbaits A L M A N A C

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Sportsman’s Daybook Tides and Prime Times

JULY 2013

TIDE forecast for GALVESTON CHANNEL (29.3166° N, 94.88° W) SOLUNAR forecast for TEXAS CENTER (31.14° N, 99.39° W) MONDAY

Jul 1

High Tide: 1:29 AM Low Tide: 5:38 AM High Tide: 10:57 AM Low Tide: 6:58 PM

TUESDAY PRIME TIME

1.02ft. 0.93ft. 1.15ft. -0.04ft.

7:30 — 9:30 AM

Sunrise: 6:36a Set: 8:44p Moonrise: 1:54a Set: 3:14p AM Minor: 1:03a AM Major: 7:15a PM Minor: 1:27p PM Major: 7:38p Moon Overhead: 8:31a Moon Underfoot: 8:55p

8 l High Tide: 6:51 AM Low Tide: 11:49 AM High Tide: 3:02 PM Low Tide: 11:09 PM

PRIME TIME 1.34ft. 1.14ft. 1.18ft. -0.19ft.

7:30 — 9:30 PM

Sunrise: 6:39a Set: 8:43p Moonrise: 7:07a Set: 8:56p AM Minor: 6:09a AM Major: ----PM Minor: 6:32p PM Major: 12:44p Moon Overhead: 2:03p Moon Underfoot: 1:40a

15 º Low Tide: 2:23 AM High Tide: 9:13 AM Low Tide: 4:31 PM

PRIME TIME 0.68ft. 1.19ft. 0.26ft.

12:00 — 2:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:43a Set: 8:41p Moonrise: 1:31p Set: 12:25a AM Minor: 11:52a AM Major: 5:40a PM Minor: ----- PM Major: 6:04p Moon Overhead: 7:20p Moon Underfoot: 6:55a

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High Tide: 6:02 AM Low Tide: 10:45 AM High Tide: 2:58 PM Low Tide: 10:47 PM

PRIME TIME 1.49ft. 1.16ft. 1.36ft. -0.56ft.

6:30 — 8:30 PM

Sunrise: 6:47a Set: 8:38p Moonrise: 8:32p Set: 6:43a AM Minor: 5:40a AM Major: 11:55a PM Minor: 6:10p PM Major: ----Moon Overhead: 1:11a Moon Underfoot: 1:41p

29 Low Tide: 3:14 AM High Tide: 9:17 AM Low Tide: 5:20 PM

0.93ft. 1.17ft. 0.05ft.

PRIME TIME 6:00 — 8:00 AM

Sunrise: 6:51a Set: 8:34p Moonrise: 12:31a Set: 2:01p AM Minor: ----- AM Major: 5:59a PM Minor: 12:11p PM Major: 6:23p Moon Overhead: 7:14a Moon Underfoot: 7:37p

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2 High Tide: 3:18 AM Low Tide: 7:55 AM High Tide: 11:19 AM Low Tide: 7:43 PM

WEDNESDAY PRIME TIME 8:00 — 10:00 AM

1.15ft. 1.07ft. 1.15ft. -0.15ft.

Set: 8:44p Sunrise: 6:37a Moonrise: 2:32a Set: 4:09p AM Minor: 1:46a AM Major: 7:58a PM Minor: 2:10p PM Major: 8:21p Moon Overhead: 9:18a Moon Underfoot: 9:41p

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PRIME TIME

High Tide: 7:15 AM Low Tide: 12:13 PM High Tide: 3:46 PM Low Tide: 11:39 PM

1.33ft. 1.08ft. 1.14ft. -0.11ft.

8:00 — 10:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:40a Set: 8:43p Moonrise: 7:59a Set: 9:33p AM Minor: 6:57a AM Major: 12:45a PM Minor: 7:20p PM Major: 1:08p Moon Overhead: 2:49p Moon Underfoot: 2:26a

16 High Tide: 12:15 AM Low Tide: 3:06 AM High Tide: 9:19 AM Low Tide: 5:25 PM

PRIME TIME

0.96ft. 0.90ft. 1.21ft. 0.03ft.

1:00 — 3:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:44a Set: 8:41p Moonrise: 2:33p Set: 1:03a AM Minor: 12:18a AM Major: 6:29a PM Minor: 12:42p PM Major: 6:55p Moon Overhead: 8:11p Moon Underfoot: 7:45a

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High Tide: 6:34 AM Low Tide: 11:32 AM High Tide: 4:12 PM Low Tide: 11:36 PM

PRIME TIME 1.44ft. 1.00ft. 1.31ft. -0.38ft.

7:30 — 9:30 PM

Sunrise: 6:48a Set: 8:38p Moonrise: 9:18p Set: 7:52a AM Minor: 6:39a AM Major: 12:25a PM Minor: 7:08p PM Major: 12:53p Moon Overhead: 2:10a Moon Underfoot: 2:38p

30 » High Tide: 2:13 AM Low Tide: 4:01 AM High Tide: 9:37 AM Low Tide: 6:20 PM

PRIME TIME 7:00 — 9:00 AM

1.12ft. 1.11ft. 1.17ft. -0.03ft.

Sunrise: 6:52a Set: 8:33p Moonrise: 1:10a Set: 2:56p AM Minor: 12:34a AM Major: 6:46a PM Minor: 12:58p PM Major: 7:10p Moon Overhead: 8:01a Moon Underfoot: 8:25p

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High Tide: 4:28 AM Low Tide: 9:40 AM High Tide: 11:40 AM Low Tide: 8:24 PM

1.26ft. 1.14ft. 1.16ft. -0.22ft.

PRIME TIME 3:30 — 5:30 PM

Set: 8:44p Sunrise: 6:37a Moonrise: 3:11a Set: 5:02p AM Minor: 2:28a AM Major: 8:40a PM Minor: 2:52p PM Major: 9:04p Moon Overhead: 10:05a Moon Underfoot: 10:29p

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PRIME TIME

High Tide: 7:40 AM 1.32ft. Low Tide: 12:47 PM 1.01ft. High Tide: 4:33 PM 1.08ft.

8:30 — 10:30 PM

Sunrise: 6:40a Set: 8:43p Moonrise: 8:53a Set: 10:09p AM Minor: 7:45a AM Major: 1:34a PM Minor: 8:08p PM Major: 1:56p Moon Overhead: 3:33p Moon Underfoot: 3:11a

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High Tide: 2:03 AM Low Tide: 4:06 AM High Tide: 9:26 AM Low Tide: 6:21 PM

1.12ft. 1.10ft. 1.26ft. -0.19ft.

PRIME TIME 2:00 — 4:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:44a Set: 8:41p Moonrise: 3:36p Set: 1:46a AM Minor: 1:06a AM Major: 7:20a PM Minor: 1:34p PM Major: 7:48p Moon Overhead: 9:07p Moon Underfoot: 8:39a

24 «

PRIME TIME

High Tide: 7:05 AM 1.37ft. Low Tide: 12:22 PM 0.82ft. High Tide: 5:27 PM 1.23ft.

8:00 — 10:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:48a Set: 8:37p Moonrise: 9:59p Set: 8:59a AM Minor: 7:39a AM Major: 1:25a PM Minor: 8:06p PM Major: 1:52p Moon Overhead: 3:06a Moon Underfoot: 3:32p

31

High Tide: 4:20 AM Low Tide: 8:58 AM High Tide: 9:46 AM Low Tide: 7:14 PM

PRIME TIME

1.24ft. 1.19ft. 1.19ft. -0.08ft.

2:30 — 4:30 PM

Sunrise: 6:53a Set: 8:33p Moonrise: 1:51a Set: 3:49p AM Minor: 1:19a AM Major: 7:31a PM Minor: 1:43p PM Major: 7:55p Moon Overhead: 8:49a Moon Underfoot: 9:13p

G a m e ®

T F & G

THURSDAY

4

High Tide: 5:11 AM Low Tide: 10:53 AM High Tide: 12:04 PM Low Tide: 9:01 PM

1.32ft. 1.18ft. 1.18ft. -0.26ft.

PRIME TIME 4:30 — 6:30 PM

Set: 8:44p Sunrise: 6:38a Moonrise: 3:53a Set: 5:54p AM Minor: 3:10a AM Major: 9:22a PM Minor: 3:34p PM Major: 9:46p Moon Overhead: 10:53a Moon Underfoot: 11:17p

11

Low Tide: 12:09 AM High Tide: 8:05 AM Low Tide: 1:26 PM High Tide: 5:30 PM

-0.01ft. 1.30ft. 0.92ft. 1.01ft.

PRIME TIME 9:00 — 11:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:41a Set: 8:43p Moonrise: 9:47a Set: 10:42p AM Minor: 8:34a AM Major: 2:23a PM Minor: 8:56p PM Major: 2:45p Moon Overhead: 4:17p Moon Underfoot: 3:55a

18

High Tide: 3:20 AM Low Tide: 5:48 AM High Tide: 9:47 AM Low Tide: 7:17 PM

1.29ft. 1.26ft. 1.32ft. -0.39ft.

PRIME TIME 3:00 — 5:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:45a Set: 8:40p Moonrise: 4:41p Set: 2:35a AM Minor: 1:57a AM Major: 8:12a PM Minor: 2:26p PM Major: 8:41p Moon Overhead: 10:06p Moon Underfoot: 9:36a

25 «

Low Tide: 12:23 AM High Tide: 7:34 AM Low Tide: 1:16 PM High Tide: 6:45 PM

PRIME TIME -0.14ft. 1.31ft. 0.63ft. 1.13ft.

9:00 — 11:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:49a Set: 8:37p Moonrise: 10:38p Set: 10:04a AM Minor: 8:37a AM Major: 2:25a PM Minor: 9:03p PM Major: 2:50p Moon Overhead: 3:58a Moon Underfoot: 4:24p

Aug 1

High Tide: 4:49 AM Low Tide: 8:01 PM

PRIME TIME 1.31ft. -0.12ft.

4:00 — 5:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:53a Set: 8:32p Moonrise: 2:35a Set: 4:40p AM Minor: 2:03a AM Major: 8:15a PM Minor: 2:27p PM Major: 8:39p Moon Overhead: 9:37a Moon Underfoot: 10:01p

A L M A N A C

6/24/13 4:26 PM


SYMBOL KEY

l

Add or subtract the time shown at the rightof the Tide Stations on this table (and map) to determine the adjustment from the time shown for Galveston Channel in the calendars.

KEY PLACE Sabine Bank Lighthouse Sabine Pass Jetty Sabine Pass Mesquite Pt, Sab. Pass Galveston Bay, S. Jetty Port Bolivar

FRIDAY

5 High Tide: 5:42 AM Low Tide: 11:32 AM High Tide: 12:41 PM Low Tide: 9:36 PM

1.35ft. 1.19ft. 1.20ft. -0.28ft.

5:00 — 7:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:38a Set: 8:44p Moonrise: 4:38a Set: 6:44p AM Minor: 3:53a AM Major: 10:05a PM Minor: 4:17p PM Major: 10:29p Moon Overhead: 11:41a Moon Underfoot: None

12 Low Tide: 12:40 AM High Tide: 8:28 AM Low Tide: 2:08 PM High Tide: 6:44 PM

0.12ft. 1.27ft. 0.80ft. 0.93ft.

PRIME TIME 9:30 — 11:30 AM

Sunrise: 6:41a Set: 8:42p Moonrise: 10:41a Set: 11:15p AM Minor: 9:23a AM Major: 3:12a PM Minor: 9:45p PM Major: 3:34p Moon Overhead: 5:01p Moon Underfoot: 4:39a

19 High Tide: 4:10 AM Low Tide: 7:55 AM High Tide: 10:45 AM Low Tide: 8:12 PM

1.42ft. 1.34ft. 1.36ft. -0.55ft.

PRIME TIME 4:00 — 6:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:45a Set: 8:40p Moonrise: 5:45p Set: 3:29a AM Minor: 2:50a AM Major: 9:05a PM Minor: 3:20p PM Major: 9:36p Moon Overhead: 11:07p Moon Underfoot: 10:36a

26 Low Tide: 1:08 AM High Tide: 8:02 AM Low Tide: 2:13 PM High Tide: 8:10 PM

0.14ft. 1.25ft. 0.44ft. 1.04ft.

PRIME TIME 9:30 — 11:30 PM

Sunrise: 6:50a Set: 8:36p Moonrise: 11:15p Set: 11:06a AM Minor: 9:34a AM Major: 3:22a PM Minor: 9:59p PM Major: 3:47p Moon Overhead: 4:49a Moon Underfoot: 5:14p

2 High Tide: 5:08 AM Low Tide: 10:41 AM High Tide: 11:36 AM Low Tide: 8:42 PM

1.34ft. 1.22ft. 1.22ft. -0.13ft.

PRIME TIME 4:00 — 6:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:54a Set: 8:31p Moonrise: 3:22a Set: 5:28p AM Minor: 2:46a AM Major: 8:58a PM Minor: 3:10p PM Major: 9:22p Moon Overhead: 10:25a Moon Underfoot: 10:49p

6 « High Tide: 6:06 AM Low Tide: 11:43 AM High Tide: 1:29 PM Low Tide: 10:09 PM

LOW -1:31 -1:31 -1:15 -0:25 -1:05 -0:06

KEY PLACE HIGH Galveston Channel/Bays Texas City Turning Basin +0:33 Eagle Point +3:54 Clear Lake +6:05 Morgans Point +10:21 Round Pt, Trinity Bay +10:39

LOW

PRIME TIME 1.35ft. 1.20ft. 1.21ft. -0.27ft.

13 Low Tide: 1:11 AM High Tide: 8:48 AM Low Tide: 2:53 PM High Tide: 8:22 PM

0.28ft. 1.23ft. 0.65ft. 0.87ft.

6:00 — 8:00 PM

High Tide: 4:51 AM Low Tide: 9:13 AM High Tide: 12:16 PM Low Tide: 9:05 PM

1.49ft. 1.34ft. 1.38ft. -0.64ft.

PRIME TIME 10:30A — 12:30P

Low Tide: 1:51 AM High Tide: 8:29 AM Low Tide: 3:14 PM High Tide: 9:46 PM

0.43ft. 1.21ft. 0.28ft. 1.00ft.

PRIME TIME

High Tide: 5:19 AM Low Tide: 10:38 AM High Tide: 12:49 PM Low Tide: 9:18 PM

1.34ft. 1.22ft. 1.24ft. -0.12ft.

LOW +4:43 +4:18 +3:31 +2:33 +2:31 -1:06

«

PRIME TIME

best days

PRIME TIME

Low Tide: 1:45 AM High Tide: 9:03 AM Low Tide: 3:40 PM High Tide: 10:17 PM

21 «

7:00 — 9:00 PM

0.47ft. 1.20ft. 0.47ft. 0.87ft.

PRIME TIME 11:00A — 1:00P

PRIME TIME 1.51ft. 1.28ft. 1.38ft. -0.64ft.

6:30 — 8:30 PM

Sunrise: 6:46a Set: 8:39p Moonrise: 7:42p Set: 5:35a AM Minor: 4:41a AM Major: 10:57a PM Minor: 5:12p PM Major: 11:28p Moon Overhead: 12:09a Moon Underfoot: 12:40p

28

Low Tide: 2:33 AM High Tide: 8:54 AM Low Tide: 4:17 PM High Tide: 11:39 PM

4:00 — 6:00 AM

PRIME TIME

0.70ft. 1.18ft. 0.15ft. 1.02ft.

5:00 — 7:00 AM

Sunrise: 6:51a Set: 8:35p Moonrise: None Set: 1:05p AM Minor: 11:21a AM Major: 5:09a PM Minor: 11:45p PM Major: 5:33p Moon Overhead: 6:26a Moon Underfoot: 6:50p

PRIME TIME

4

High Tide: 5:30 AM Low Tide: 10:33 AM High Tide: 1:47 PM Low Tide: 9:49 PM

5:00 — 7:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:55a Set: 8:30p Moonrise: 4:10a Set: 6:13p AM Minor: 3:28a AM Major: 9:40a PM Minor: 3:52p PM Major: 10:04p Moon Overhead: 11:12a Moon Underfoot: 11:36p

A L M A N A C

14

PRIME TIME

1.34ft. 1.19ft. 1.26ft. -0.09ft.

6:00 — 8:00 PM

F i s h

&

HIGH -0.09 -0:44 0:00 -0:03 -0:24 +1:02

LOW -0.09 -1:02 -1:20 -1:31 -1:45 -0:42

The facing pages contain TIDE predictions for Galveston Channel (29.3166° N, 94.88° W) and SOLUNAR forecast for TEXAS CENTER (31.14° N, 99.39° W) TIDE PREDICTIONS are located in the upper white boxes on the Calendar Pages. Use the Correction Table above, which is keyed to 23 other tide stations, to adjust low and high tide times. SOLUNAR ACTIVITY is shown in the lower green boxes of the Calendar pages.

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY data is provided to indicate major and minor feeding periods for each day, as the daily phases of the moon have varying degrees of influence on many wildlife species. AM & PM MINOR phases occur when the moon rises and sets. These phases last 1 to 2 hours. AM & PM MAJOR phases occur when the moon reaches its highest point overhead as well as when it is “underfoot” or at its highest point on the exact opposite side of the earth from your positoin (or literally under your feet). Most days have two Major Feeding Phases, each lasting about 2 hours. PEAK DAYS: The closer the moon is to your location, the stronger the influence. FULL or NEW MOONS provide the strongest influnce of the month. PEAK TIMES: When a Solunar Period falls within 30 minutes to an hour of sunrise or sunset, anticipate increased action. A moon rise or moon set during PRIME one of these periods will cause evenTIME greater action. If a FULL or NEW MOON occurs during a Solunar Period, expect the best action of the season.

Sunrise: 6:55a Set: 8:30p Moonrise: 5:01a Set: 6:55p AM Minor: 4:11a AM Major: 10:23a PM Minor: 4:34p PM Major: 10:46p Moon Overhead: 12:00p Moon Underfoot: None

T e x a S

KEY PLACE San Luis Pass Freeport Harbor Pass Cavallo Aransas Pass Padre Island (So. End) Port Isabel

using the prime times calendar

PRIME TIME 1.35ft. 1.18ft. 1.21ft. -0.24ft.

Set: 8:43p Sunrise: 6:39a Moonrise: 6:15a Set: 8:15p AM Minor: 5:22a AM Major: 11:34a PM Minor: 5:46p PM Major: 11:58p Moon Overhead: 1:16p Moon Underfoot: 12:52a

High Tide: 5:28 AM Low Tide: 10:00 AM High Tide: 1:41 PM Low Tide: 9:57 PM

5:00 — 7:00 PM

Sunrise: 6:50a Set: 8:35p Moonrise: 11:53p Set: 12:06p AM Minor: 10:29a AM Major: 4:17a PM Minor: 10:53p PM Major: 4:41p Moon Overhead: 5:38a Moon Underfoot: 6:02p

3

HIGH +5:48 +3:16 +2:38 +2:39 +2:32 -1:06

Sunrise: 6:42a Set: 8:42p Moonrise: 12:32p Set: None AM Minor: 11:02a AM Major: 4:51a PM Minor: 11:25p PM Major: 5:14p Moon Overhead: 6:31p Moon Underfoot: 6:08a

Sunrise: 6:46a Set: 8:39p Moonrise: 6:46p Set: 4:29a AM Minor: 3:45a AM Major: 10:00a PM Minor: 4:16p PM Major: 10:31p Moon Overhead: None Moon Underfoot: 11:38a

27

7 «

High Tide: 6:28 AM Low Tide: 11:42 AM High Tide: 2:17 PM Low Tide: 10:40 PM

Sunrise: 6:42a Set: 8:42p Moonrise: 11:36a Set: 11:49p AM Minor: 10:13a AM Major: 4:01a PM Minor: 10:35p PM Major: 4:24p Moon Overhead: 5:45p Moon Underfoot: 5:23a

20

KEY PLACE Pt Barrow, Trinity Bay Gilchrist, East Bay Jamaica Beach, W. Bay Alligator Point, W. Bay Christmas Pt Galveston Pleasure Pier

+0:41 +4:15 +6:40 +5:19 +5:15

SUNDAY

Set: 8:44p Sunrise: 6:39a Moonrise: 5:25a Set: 7:31p AM Minor: 4:37a AM Major: 10:49a PM Minor: 5:01p PM Major: 11:13p Moon Overhead: 12:29p Moon Underfoot: 12:05a

T F & G

ALMANAC Digital.indd 93

HIGH -1:46 -1:26 -1:00 -0:04 -0:39 +0:14

SATURDAY PRIME TIME

»

New First Full Last Good Moon Qtr Moon Qtr Day

NOT TO BE USED FOR NAVIGATION

Tide Correction Table

¡

º

G a m e ®

NOT TO BE USED FOR NAVIGATION

J U L Y

2 0 1 3

|

93

6/24/13 4:26 PM


Sportsman’s Daybook Tides and Prime Times

JULY 2013

USING THE PRIME TIMES CALENDAR

The following pages contain TIDE and SOLUNAR predictions for Galveston Channel (29.3166° N, 94.88° W).

T12

T4

T11

T10

TIDE PREDICTIONS are located in the upper white boxes on the Calendar Pages. Use the Correction Table below, which is keyed to 23 other tide stations, to adjust low and high tide times.

T9 T8 T7

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY is shown in the lower color boxes of the Calendar pages. Use the Solunar Adjustment Scale below to adjust times for points East and West of Galveston Channel.

T15 T16

T6 T17

T3 T2 T1

TIDE PREDICTIONS are shown in graph form, with High and Low tide predictions in text immediately below. SOLUNAR ACTIVITY data is provided to indicate major and minor feeding periods for each day, as the daily phases of the moon have varying degrees of influence on many wildlife species.

T13 T5

T14

AM & PM MINOR phases occur when the moon rises and sets. These phases last 1 to 2 hours.

T18

AM & PM MAJOR phases occur when the moon reaches its highest point overhead as well as when it is “underfoot” or at its highest point on the exact opposite side of the earth from your positoin (or literally under your feet). Most days have two Major Feeding Phases, each lasting about 2 hours.

T19

T20

PEAK DAYS: The closer the moon is to your location, the stronger the influence. FULL or NEW MOONS provide the strongest influnce of the month. PEAK TIMES: When a Solunar Period falls within 30 minutes to an hour of sunrise or sunset, anticipate increased action. A moon rise or moon set during one of these periods will cause even greater action. If a FULL or NEW MOON occurs during a Solunar Period, expect the best action of the season.

T21

Tide Correction Table

Add or subtract the time shown at the rightof the Tide Stations on this table (and map) to determine the adjustment from the time shown for Galveston Channel in the calendars.

KEY PLACE T1 Sabine Bank Lighthouse T2 Sabine Pass Jetty T3 Sabine Pass T4 Mesquite Pt, Sab. Pass T5 Galveston Bay, S. Jetty T6 Port Bolivar

HIGH -1:46 -1:26 -1:00 -0:04 -0:39 +0:14

LOW -1:31 -1:31 -1:15 -0:25 -1:05 -0:06

KEY PLACE HIGH Galveston Channel/Bays T7 Texas City Turning Basin +0:33 +3:54 T8 Eagle Point +6:05 T9 Clear Lake +10:21 T10 Morgans Point Round Pt, Trinity Bay +10:39 T11

LOW +0:41 +4:15 +6:40 +5:19 +5:15

KEY PLACE Pt Barrow, Trinity Bay T12 Gilchrist, East Bay T13 Jamaica Beach, W. Bay T14 Alligator Point, W. Bay T15 Christmas Pt T16 Galveston Pleasure Pier T17

HIGH +5:48 +3:16 +2:38 +2:39 +2:32 -1:06

LOW +4:43 +4:18 +3:31 +2:33 +2:31 -1:06

KEY PLACE San Luis Pass T18 Freeport Harbor T19 Pass Cavallo T20 Aransas Pass T21 Padre Island (So. End) T22 Port Isabel T23

HIGH -0.09 -0:44 0:00 -0:03 -0:24 +1:02

LOW -0.09 -1:02 -1:20 -1:31 -1:45 -0:42

SPORTSMAN’S DAYBOOK IS SPONSORED BY:

NOT TO BE USED FOR NAVIGATION T22 T23

KEYS TO USING THE TIDE AND SOLUNAR GRAPHS TIDE GRAPH:

Yellow: Daylight

12a

Tab: Peak Fishing Period

6a

12p

6p

12a

Light Blue: Nighttime

BEST:

5:30 — 7:30 AM

Green: Falling Tide

Gold Fish: Best Time

Blue: Rising Tide Red Graph: Fishing Score

Blue Fish: Good Time

MINOR Feeding Periods (+/- 1.5 Hrs.) Time Moon is at its Highest Point in the Sky

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY:

12a

AM/PM Timeline

94 |

AM/PM Timeline

AM Minor: 1:20a

PM Minor: 1:45p

AM Major: 7:32a

PM Major: 7:57p

Moon Overhead: 8:50a 6a

6p

Moon Underfoot: 9:15p

J U L Y

ALMANAC Digital.indd 94

12p

2 0 1 3

12a

MAJOR Feeding Periods (+/- 2 Hrs.) Time Moon is Directly Underfoot (at its peak on opposite side of the earth)

T e x a S

F i s h

&

G a m e ®

T F & G

A L M A N A C

6/24/13 4:26 PM


SYMBOL KEY = New Moon l º = First Quarter l = Full Moon » = Last Quarter « = Good Day n = Best Day SUNDAY

NOT TO BE USED FOR NAVIGATION BEST:

7:45-9:40 AM

= Peak Fishing Period

= FALLING TIDE = RISING TIDE = DAYLIGHT HOURS = NIGHTTIME HOURS

Fishing Day’s Best 2nd Score Graph Score Best

Jul 1

Sunrise: 6:23a Set: 8:22p Moonrise: 1:38a Set: 2:53p

TUESDAY

2

THURSDAY

3

Sunrise: 6:23a Set: 8:22p Moonrise: 2:16a Set: 3:47p

FRIDAY

4

Sunrise: 6:24a Set: 8:22p Moonrise: 2:56a Set: 4:40p

SATURDAY

5

Sunrise: 6:24a Set: 8:21p Moonrise: 3:38a Set: 5:32p

6 «

Sunrise: 6:24a Set: 8:21p Moonrise: 4:23a Set: 6:22p

7 «

Sunrise: 6:25a Set: 8:21p Moonrise: 5:10a Set: 7:09p

Sunrise: 6:25a Set: 8:21p Moonrise: 6:00a Set: 7:53p

AM Minor: 12:45a

PM Minor: 1:09p

AM Minor: 1:28a

PM Minor: 1:52p

AM Minor: 2:10a

PM Minor: 2:34p

AM Minor: 2:52a

PM Minor: 3:16p

AM Minor: 3:35a

PM Minor: 3:59p

AM Minor: 4:19a

PM Minor: 4:43p

AM Minor: 5:04a

PM Minor: 5:28p

AM Major: 6:57a

PM Major: 7:20p

AM Major: 7:40a

PM Major: 8:03p

AM Major: 8:22a

PM Major: 8:46p

AM Major: 9:04a

PM Major: 9:28p

AM Major: 9:47a

PM Major: 10:11p

AM Major: 10:31a

PM Major: 10:55p

AM Major: 11:16a

PM Major: 11:40p

Moon Overhead: 8:13a

12a

WEDNESDAY

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 9:46a

Moon Overhead: 8:59a 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 10:34a 12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 12:10p

Moon Overhead: 11:22a 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

MONDAY

Tides and Prime Times for JULY 2013

Moon Overhead: 12:57p 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

feet

feet

Moon Underfoot: 8:36p

+2.0

-1.0

TIDE LEVELS

0

BEST:

7:30 — 9:30 AM

High Tide: 1:29 AM Low Tide: 5:38 AM High Tide: 10:57 AM Low Tide: 6:58 PM

Moon Underfoot: 10:10p BEST:

8:00 — 10:00 AM

1.02ft. 0.93ft. 1.15ft. -0.04ft.

High Tide: 3:18 AM Low Tide: 7:55 AM High Tide: 11:19 AM Low Tide: 7:43 PM

1.15ft. 1.07ft. 1.15ft. -0.15ft.

High Tide: 4:28 AM Low Tide: 9:40 AM High Tide: 11:40 AM Low Tide: 8:24 PM

1.26ft. 1.14ft. 1.16ft. -0.22ft.

Moon Underfoot: 11:46p

BEST:

3:30 — 5:30 PM

T F & G

ALMANAC Digital.indd 95

Moon Underfoot: 10:58p

BEST:

4:30 — 6:30 PM

High Tide: 5:11 AM Low Tide: 10:53 AM High Tide: 12:04 PM Low Tide: 9:01 PM

A L M A N A C

1.32ft. 1.18ft. 1.18ft. -0.26ft.

T e x a S

Moon Underfoot: None BEST:

5:00 — 7:00 PM

High Tide: 5:42 AM Low Tide: 11:32 AM High Tide: 12:41 PM Low Tide: 9:36 PM

F i s h

&

1.35ft. 1.19ft. 1.20ft. -0.28ft.

Moon Underfoot: 12:34a

High Tide: 6:06 AM Low Tide: 11:43 AM High Tide: 1:29 PM Low Tide: 10:09 PM

G a m e ®

1.35ft. 1.20ft. 1.21ft. -0.27ft.

J U L Y

+2.0

BEST:

6:00 — 8:00 PM

7:00 — 9:00 PM

High Tide: 6:28 AM Low Tide: 11:42 AM High Tide: 2:17 PM Low Tide: 10:40 PM

2 0 1 3

|

TIDE LEVELS

+1.0

BEST:

Moon Underfoot: 9:23p

1.35ft. 1.18ft. 1.21ft. -0.24ft.

+1.0 0 -1.0

95

6/24/13 4:26 PM


Sportsman’s Daybook

SYMBOL KEY = New Moon l º = First Quarter l = Full Moon » = Last Quarter « = Good Day n = Best Day SUNDAY

NOT TO BE USED FOR NAVIGATION BEST:

7:45-9:40 AM

= Peak Fishing Period

= FALLING TIDE = RISING TIDE = DAYLIGHT HOURS = NIGHTTIME HOURS

Fishing Day’s Best 2nd Score Graph Score Best

TUESDAY

8 l

9 «

Sunrise: 6:26a Set: 8:21p Moonrise: 6:51a Set: 8:34p

THURSDAY

FRIDAY

10 « 11

Sunrise: 6:26a Set: 8:21p Moonrise: 7:44a Set: 9:12p

Sunrise: 6:27a Set: 8:21p Moonrise: 8:36a Set: 9:48p

SATURDAY

12

13

14

Sunrise: 6:27a Set: 8:20p Sunrise: 6:27a Set: 8:20p Sunrise: 6:28a Set: 8:20p Sunrise: 6:28a Set: 8:20p Moonrise: 9:30a Set: 10:23p Moonrise: 10:23a Set: 10:57p Moonrise: 11:17a Set: 11:31p Moonrise: 12:13p Set: None

AM Minor: 5:51a

PM Minor: 6:14p

AM Minor: 6:39a

PM Minor: 7:02p

AM Minor: 7:27a

PM Minor: 7:50p

AM Minor: 8:16a

PM Minor: 8:38p

AM Minor: 9:05a

PM Minor: 9:27p

AM Minor: 9:55a

PM Minor: 10:17p

AM Minor: 10:44a

PM Minor: 11:07p

AM Major: -----

PM Major: 12:26p

AM Major: 12:27a

PM Major: 12:50p

AM Major: 1:16a

PM Major: 1:38p

AM Major: 2:05a

PM Major: 2:27p

AM Major: 2:54a

PM Major: 3:16p

AM Major: 3:43a

PM Major: 4:06p

AM Major: 4:32a

PM Major: 4:55p

Moon Overhead: 1:44p

12a

WEDNESDAY

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 3:15p

Moon Overhead: 2:30p 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 3:59p 12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 5:27p

Moon Overhead: 4:42p 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 6:13p 12a

6a

12p

6p

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

MONDAY

Tides and Prime Times for JULY 2013

12a

feet

feet

Moon Underfoot: 1:21a

+2.0

-1.0

BEST:

7:30 — 9:30 PM

TIDE LEVELS

0

BEST:

High Tide: 6:51 AM Low Tide: 11:49 AM High Tide: 3:02 PM Low Tide: 11:09 PM

96 |

1.34ft. 1.14ft. 1.18ft. -0.19ft.

J U L Y

ALMANAC Digital.indd 96

Moon Underfoot: 2:53a

8:00 — 10:00 PM

High Tide: 7:15 AM Low Tide: 12:13 PM High Tide: 3:46 PM Low Tide: 11:39 PM

2 0 1 3

Moon Underfoot: 3:37a

BEST:

8:30 — 10:30 PM

1.33ft. High Tide: 7:40 AM 1.32ft. 1.08ft. Low Tide: 12:47 PM 1.01ft. 1.14ft. High Tide: 4:33 PM 1.08ft. -0.11ft.

T e x a S

F i s h

&

Moon Underfoot: 4:21a

BEST:

BEST:

BEST:

9:00 — 11:00 PM 9:30 — 11:30 AM

Low Tide: 12:09 AM High Tide: 8:05 AM Low Tide: 1:26 PM High Tide: 5:30 PM

G a m e ®

-0.01ft. 1.30ft. 0.92ft. 1.01ft.

Low Tide: 12:40 AM High Tide: 8:28 AM Low Tide: 2:08 PM High Tide: 6:44 PM

T F & G

Moon Underfoot: 5:04a

Low Tide: 1:11 AM High Tide: 8:48 AM Low Tide: 2:53 PM High Tide: 8:22 PM

+2.0

BEST:

10:30A — 12:30P

0.12ft. 1.27ft. 0.80ft. 0.93ft.

Moon Underfoot: 5:49a 11:00A — 1:00P

0.28ft. 1.23ft. 0.65ft. 0.87ft.

Low Tide: 1:45 AM High Tide: 9:03 AM Low Tide: 3:40 PM High Tide: 10:17 PM

TIDE LEVELS

+1.0

Moon Underfoot: 2:07a

0.47ft. 1.20ft. 0.47ft. 0.87ft.

+1.0 0 -1.0

A L M A N A C

6/24/13 4:26 PM


ALMANAC Digital.indd 97

6/24/13 4:26 PM


Sportsman’s Daybook

NOT TO BE USED FOR NAVIGATION BEST:

7:45-9:40 AM

= Peak Fishing Period

= FALLING TIDE = RISING TIDE = DAYLIGHT HOURS = NIGHTTIME HOURS

Fishing Day’s Best 2nd Score Graph Score Best

TUESDAY

15 º

WEDNESDAY

16

THURSDAY

17

18

Sunrise: 6:29a Set: 8:19p Sunrise: 6:30a Set: 8:19p Sunrise: 6:30a Set: 8:19p Moonrise: 1:11p Set: 12:07a Moonrise: 2:11p Set: 12:47a Moonrise: 3:14p Set: 1:30a

SATURDAY

19

Sunrise: 6:31a Set: 8:18p Moonrise: 4:19p Set: 2:19a

SUNDAY

20

Sunrise: 6:31a Set: 8:18p Moonrise: 5:22p Set: 3:14a

21 «

Sunrise: 6:32a Set: 8:17p Moonrise: 6:23p Set: 4:14a

Sunrise: 6:32a Set: 8:17p Moonrise: 7:20p Set: 5:19a

AM Minor: 11:34a

PM Minor: 11:58p

AM Minor: 12:00a

PM Minor: 12:24p

AM Minor: 12:48a

PM Minor: 1:16p

AM Minor: 1:39a

PM Minor: 2:08p

AM Minor: 2:32a

PM Minor: 3:02p

AM Minor: 3:27a

PM Minor: 3:58p

AM Minor: 4:23a

PM Minor: 4:54p

AM Major: 5:22a

PM Major: 5:46p

AM Major: 6:11a

PM Major: 6:37p

AM Major: 7:02a

PM Major: 7:30p

AM Major: 7:54a

PM Major: 8:23p

AM Major: 8:47a

PM Major: 9:18p

AM Major: 9:42a

PM Major: 10:13p

AM Major: 10:39a

PM Major: 11:10p

Moon Overhead: 7:01p

12a

FRIDAY

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 8:48p

Moon Overhead: 7:53p 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 9:47p 12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 11:51p

Moon Overhead: 10:48p 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

MONDAY

Tides and Prime Times for JULY 2013

12a

Moon Overhead: None 6a

12p

6p

12a

feet

feet

Moon Underfoot: 6:36a

+2.0

-1.0

TIDE LEVELS

0

Low Tide: 2:23 AM High Tide: 9:13 AM Low Tide: 4:31 PM

ALMANAC Digital.indd 98

0.68ft. 1.19ft. 0.26ft.

BEST:

1:00 — 3:00 PM

High Tide: 12:15 AM Low Tide: 3:06 AM High Tide: 9:19 AM Low Tide: 5:25 PM

0.96ft. 0.90ft. 1.21ft. 0.03ft.

Moon Underfoot: 8:20a BEST:

2:00 — 4:00 PM

High Tide: 2:03 AM Low Tide: 4:06 AM High Tide: 9:26 AM Low Tide: 6:21 PM

1.12ft. 1.10ft. 1.26ft. -0.19ft.

Moon Underfoot: 9:17a BEST:

3:00 — 5:00 PM

High Tide: 3:20 AM Low Tide: 5:48 AM High Tide: 9:47 AM Low Tide: 7:17 PM

1.29ft. 1.26ft. 1.32ft. -0.39ft.

Moon Underfoot: 10:18a BEST:

4:00 — 6:00 PM

High Tide: 4:10 AM Low Tide: 7:55 AM High Tide: 10:45 AM Low Tide: 8:12 PM

1.42ft. 1.34ft. 1.36ft. -0.55ft.

Moon Underfoot: 11:20a BEST:

5:00 — 7:00 PM

High Tide: 4:51 AM Low Tide: 9:13 AM High Tide: 12:16 PM Low Tide: 9:05 PM

1.49ft. 1.34ft. 1.38ft. -0.64ft.

Moon Underfoot: 12:21p

+2.0

BEST:

6:30 — 8:30 PM

High Tide: 5:28 AM Low Tide: 10:00 AM High Tide: 1:41 PM Low Tide: 9:57 PM

1.51ft. 1.28ft. 1.38ft. -0.64ft.

TIDE LEVELS

+1.0

BEST:

12:00 — 2:00 PM

Moon Underfoot: 7:26a

+1.0 0 -1.0

6/24/13 4:27 PM


SYMBOL KEY = New Moon l º = First Quarter l = Full Moon » = Last Quarter « = Good Day n = Best Day SUNDAY

Tides and Prime Times for JULY 2013 TUESDAY

22 «

23 ¡

Sunrise: 6:33a Set: 8:17p Moonrise: 8:11p Set: 6:27a

THURSDAY

24 «

Sunrise: 6:33a Set: 8:16p Moonrise: 8:57p Set: 7:35a

FRIDAY

25 «

Sunrise: 6:34a Set: 8:16p Moonrise: 9:40p Set: 8:41a

SATURDAY

26

Sunrise: 6:34a Set: 8:15p Moonrise: 10:19p Set: 9:45a

27

28

Sunrise: 6:35a Set: 8:14p Sunrise: 6:36a Set: 8:14p Sunrise: 6:36a Set: 8:13p Moonrise: 10:58p Set: 10:47a Moonrise: 11:36p Set: 11:46a Moonrise: None Set: 12:44p

AM Minor: 5:22a

PM Minor: 5:52p

AM Minor: 6:21a

PM Minor: 6:50p

AM Minor: 7:21a

PM Minor: 7:48p

AM Minor: 8:19a

PM Minor: 8:45p

AM Minor: 9:16a

PM Minor: 9:41p

AM Minor: 10:11a

PM Minor: 10:35p

AM Minor: 11:03a

PM Minor: 11:27p

AM Major: 11:37a

PM Major: -----

AM Major: 12:07a

PM Major: 12:35p

AM Major: 1:07a

PM Major: 1:34p

AM Major: 2:07a

PM Major: 2:32p

AM Major: 3:04a

PM Major: 3:29p

AM Major: 3:59a

PM Major: 4:23p

AM Major: 4:51a

PM Major: 5:15p

Moon Overhead: 12:52a

12a

WEDNESDAY

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 2:47a

Moon Overhead: 1:51a 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 3:40a 12a

6a

12p

6p

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

MONDAY

Moon Overhead: 5:19a

Moon Overhead: 4:30a 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 6:07a 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

feet

feet

Moon Underfoot: 1:22p

+2.0

-1.0

TIDE LEVELS

0

High Tide: 6:02 AM Low Tide: 10:45 AM High Tide: 2:58 PM Low Tide: 10:47 PM

1.49ft. 1.16ft. 1.36ft. -0.56ft.

Moon Underfoot: 3:14p

BEST:

7:30 — 9:30 PM

High Tide: 6:34 AM Low Tide: 11:32 AM High Tide: 4:12 PM Low Tide: 11:36 PM

ALMANAC Digital.indd 99

BEST:

Moon Underfoot: 4:55p

BEST:

8:00 — 10:00 PM

1.44ft. High Tide: 7:05 AM 1.37ft. 1.00ft. Low Tide: 12:22 PM 0.82ft. 1.31ft. High Tide: 5:27 PM 1.23ft. -0.38ft.

T F & G

Moon Underfoot: 4:05p

BEST:

9:00 — 11:00 PM

Low Tide: 12:23 AM High Tide: 7:34 AM Low Tide: 1:16 PM High Tide: 6:45 PM

A L M A N A C

-0.14ft. 1.31ft. 0.63ft. 1.13ft.

T e x a S

Moon Underfoot: 5:43p BEST:

F i s h

&

0.14ft. 1.25ft. 0.44ft. 1.04ft.

5:00 — 7:00 AM

Low Tide: 1:51 AM High Tide: 8:29 AM Low Tide: 3:14 PM High Tide: 9:46 PM

G a m e ®

+2.0

BEST:

9:30 — 11:30 PM 4:00 — 6:00 AM

Low Tide: 1:08 AM High Tide: 8:02 AM Low Tide: 2:13 PM High Tide: 8:10 PM

Moon Underfoot: 6:31p

0.43ft. 1.21ft. 0.28ft. 1.00ft.

J U L Y

TIDE LEVELS

+1.0

BEST:

6:30 — 8:30 PM

Moon Underfoot: 2:19p

Low Tide: 2:33 AM High Tide: 8:54 AM Low Tide: 4:17 PM High Tide: 11:39 PM

2 0 1 3

|

0.70ft. 1.18ft. 0.15ft. 1.02ft.

+1.0 0 -1.0

99

6/24/13 4:27 PM


Sportsman’s Daybook

SYMBOL KEY = New Moon l º = First Quarter l = Full Moon » = Last Quarter « = Good Day n = Best Day SUNDAY

NOT TO BE USED FOR NAVIGATION BEST:

7:45-9:40 AM

= Peak Fishing Period

= FALLING TIDE = RISING TIDE = DAYLIGHT HOURS = NIGHTTIME HOURS

Fishing Day’s Best Good Score Graph Score Score

TUESDAY

29

30 »

Sunrise: 6:37a Set: 8:13p Moonrise: 12:14a Set: 1:40p

THURSDAY

31

Sunrise: 6:37a Set: 8:12p Moonrise: 12:54a Set: 2:35p

FRIDAY

Aug 1

Sunrise: 6:38a Set: 8:11p Moonrise: 1:36a Set: 3:27p

SATURDAY

2

Sunrise: 6:39a Set: 8:11p Moonrise: 2:20a Set: 4:18p

3

Sunrise: 6:39a Set: 8:10p Moonrise: 3:07a Set: 5:06p

4

Sunrise: 6:40a Set: 8:09p Moonrise: 3:55a Set: 5:51p

Sunrise: 6:40a Set: 8:09p Moonrise: 4:46a Set: 6:33p

AM Minor: 11:53a

PM Minor: -----

AM Minor: 12:16a

PM Minor: 12:40p

AM Minor: 1:01a

PM Minor: 1:25p

AM Minor: 1:45a

PM Minor: 2:09p

AM Minor: 2:28a

PM Minor: 2:52p

AM Minor: 3:10a

PM Minor: 3:34p

AM Minor: 3:53a

PM Minor: 4:16p

AM Major: 5:41a

PM Major: 6:05p

AM Major: 6:28a

PM Major: 6:52p

AM Major: 7:13a

PM Major: 7:37p

AM Major: 7:57a

PM Major: 8:21p

AM Major: 8:40a

PM Major: 9:03p

AM Major: 9:22a

PM Major: 9:46p

AM Major: 10:05a

PM Major: 10:28p

Moon Overhead: 6:55a

12a

WEDNESDAY

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 8:30a

Moon Overhead: 7:43a 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 9:18a 12a

6a

12p

6p

Moon Overhead: 10:54a

Moon Overhead: 10:06a 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

6a

12p

6p

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

SOLUNAR ACTIVITY

MONDAY

Tides and Prime Times for JULY 2013

Moon Overhead: 11:41a 12a

6a

12p

6p

12a

feet

feet

Moon Underfoot: 7:19p

+2.0

-1.0

TIDE LEVELS

0

BEST:

6:00 — 8:00 AM

0.93ft. 1.17ft. 0.05ft.

J U L Y

ALMANAC Digital.indd 100

High Tide: 2:13 AM Low Tide: 4:01 AM High Tide: 9:37 AM Low Tide: 6:20 PM

2 0 1 3

Moon Underfoot: 9:42p

BEST:

7:00 — 9:00 AM

Low Tide: 3:14 AM High Tide: 9:17 AM Low Tide: 5:20 PM

100 |

Moon Underfoot: 8:54p 2:30 — 4:30 PM

1.12ft. 1.11ft. 1.17ft. -0.03ft.

High Tide: 4:20 AM Low Tide: 8:58 AM High Tide: 9:46 AM Low Tide: 7:14 PM

T e x a S

BEST:

4:00 — 5:00 PM

1.24ft. High Tide: 4:49 AM 1.19ft. Low Tide: 8:01 PM 1.19ft. -0.08ft.

F i s h

&

Moon Underfoot: 10:30p

G a m e ®

BEST:

BEST:

4:00 — 6:00 PM

1.31ft. High Tide: 5:08 AM -0.12ft. Low Tide: 10:41 AM High Tide: 11:36 AM Low Tide: 8:42 PM

T F & G

Moon Underfoot: 11:17p

1.34ft. 1.22ft. 1.22ft. -0.13ft.

5:00 — 7:00 PM

High Tide: 5:19 AM Low Tide: 10:38 AM High Tide: 12:49 PM Low Tide: 9:18 PM

1.34ft. 1.22ft. 1.24ft. -0.12ft.

Moon Underfoot: None

+2.0

BEST:

6:00 — 8:00 PM

High Tide: 5:30 AM Low Tide: 10:33 AM High Tide: 1:47 PM Low Tide: 9:49 PM

1.34ft. 1.19ft. 1.26ft. -0.09ft.

TIDE LEVELS

+1.0

BEST:

Moon Underfoot: 8:07p

+1.0 0 -1.0

A L M A N A C

6/24/13 4:27 PM


Texas Tasted by Mike Holmes | Contributing Editor

Feral Hog Ham

the daytime, hunts them in the nighttime, hunts them at harvest time. And he cooks them. And, presumably, eats them. I weaseled this recipe out of him recently, and although I have not tried it at this writing, I’ve cooked enough game to know already that it will be delicious.

Submerge the ham in the solution, leave for 6-8 days. Remove and wash in cold water, refrigerate, uncovered, for 12 - 24 hours. Hot smoke the ham at 200 F for 2 hours, brush with half of the glaze mixture, then resume cooking to an inside temp of 155. Remove from heat, let cool, and brush on remaining glaze.

Cured, Smoked Feral Hog Ham with Brown The Curing Brine (will do a 12 – to 15-pound ham with Glaze Sugar/Mustard Glaze

C

skin and bone removed.)

1-1/2 packed cups dark brown sugar 3/4 cup Dijon mustard 1 Tbs minced garlic

1-1/2 cup Kosher salt 2 packed cups dark brown sugar 8 tsp pink curing salt 1 gallon water

—Don Zaidle

Photo: Mike Holmes

ontributing editor Mike Holmes is a hog-hunter’s hog hunter. He slays them with whatever is handy–including specialty “silenced” rifles, handguns, bows, and hand grenades for all I know. He hunts them in

T F & G

ALMANAC Digital.indd 101

A L M A N A C

T e x a S

F i s h

&

G a m e ®

J U L Y

2 0 1 3

|

101

6/24/13 4:27 PM


TEXAS FRESHWATER

TEXAS SALTWATER

TEXAS REALESTATE

LAKE TEXOMA

Upper Coast (Sabine Lake)

PORT O’CONNOR

GALVESTON

OUTDOOR SHOPPER

DFW METROPLEX

HUNTING & FISHING GEAR MIDDLE Coast

have a safe and happy 4th of july

ROCKPORT / BAFFIN BAY

WWW.FISHGAME.COM Striper Express

LAKE AMISTAD

ROCKPORT

102 |

J U L Y

ALMANAC Digital.indd 102

2 0 1 3

T e x a S

F i s h

&

G a m e ®

T F & G

A L M A N A C

6/24/13 4:27 PM


ALMANAC Digital.indd 103

6/24/13 4:27 PM


Redfish

Catfish

Laguna Madre

Turkey

Private Pond

Autumn Trevino caught her first red with help of her grandpa Fidencio Trevino near Green Island in the Laguna Madre.

Bridgeport

Seven-year-old Elena Schoeffler caught this catfish with rod and reel on her grandparents’ private pond. Grandpa Randy Krueger had to holde it for her for the photo.

Connor Hulstein, age 10,shot his first 2 turkeys with a 20 gauge while hunting near Bridgeport.

Whitetail Gillespie County Mangrove Snapper

Eight-year-old Easton Hays helped his father, Patrick, harvest this doe in Gillespie County.

San Bernard River Loren Burke, age 6, caught her first fish—a mangrove snapper—while fishing at her grandparents’ house on the San Benard River near Churchill. Her family is very proud of her.

Black Drum Port O’Connor Henry Greive, 16, caught his first black drum which topped the scale at 40 pounds while fishing in Port O’Connor with his father.

King Mackerel South Padre Island Rick Cruz with son-in-law Frankie Herrera caught these kingfish 3 miles off the jetties at South Padre Island.

104 |

J U L Y

ALMANAC Digital.indd 104

2 0 1 3

T e x a S

F i s h

&

G a m e ®

T F & G

A L M A N A C

6/24/13 4:27 PM


MAIL TO: TFG PHOTOS 1745 Greens Rd, Houston TX 77032 NOTE: Print photos can not be returned.

EMAIL: photos@FishGame.com

For best results, send MED to HIGH quality JPEG digital files only, please.

No guarantee can be made as to when, or if, a submitted photo will be published.

Bass Benbrook Lake David Darwin caught this 8-pound, 4-oz. bass while fishing on Easter morning at Benbrook Lake with his brother Bob. He used a 7-inch Power Worm in 6 feet of water. Even though it was his only fish of the day, it was worth it.

LADYFish Galveston Hercules Guillen, age 4 of Magnolia, caught his first fish with his uncle Doug Pena on Tiki Island, using his Spider-Man fishing rig.

Catfish Lake Livingston Willie Davie of Dayton caught this 25-pound, 36-inch catfish on the Trinity River below the Lake Livingston Dam.

Feral Hog Private Ranch Justin Rock killed his first feral hog using a .243, at his Grandpa’s North 40. The hog weighed over 300 pounds.

Bass

Speckled trout

Houston

Texas Coast

Thanks to Mr.Robert Scherer and the “Pink Lady Rodsmiths,” Madelyn Zarco caught this beautiful bass at a Houston city park.

Four-year-old Heylee Leal caught her first keeper trout. She and her Daddy were using live shrimp under the lights.

Redfish Laguna Madre Ernesto Abrego landed this 26-inch Redfish while drifting the waters of the Lower Laguna Madre using artificial bait in clear, shallow water.

T F & G

ALMANAC Digital.indd 105

A L M A N A C

T e x a S

F i s h

&

G a m e ®

J U L Y

2 0 1 3

|

105

6/24/13 4:28 PM


106 |

J U L Y

ALMANAC Digital.indd 106

2 0 1 3

T e x a S

F i s h

&

G a m e 速

T F & G

A L M A N A C

6/24/13 4:28 PM


C4_ALL.indd 3

5/31/13 2:57 PM

July 2013  

THE Authority on Texas Fishing & Hunting Texas Fish & Game is the largest, oldest, and best outdoors resource of its kind in the nation. No...