Outdoors

I have not abandoned writing about freshwater fishing. Normally by mid-summer, the saltwater action has taken precedence. That doesn’t mean that the sweetwater action has ceased. According to Rayburn professional guide Will Kirkpatrick, the topwater action is really good. The secret is to be on the water when first light appears in the east.

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The bass fishing club that I belong to is not looking too good. A few days ago I went out to check on the water level and had to blink a couple of times to believe my eyes. The boat shed was almost high and dry, and there was nothing under the hull but dried mud. On one of the nearby trees, there were several buzzards surveying the scene and feeding on dead carp. An alligator was laid up in the reeds with only its toothy snout showing. Fishing on that particular lake has been sucked dry by the continuing drought.

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As we open the month of July, keep in mind that the booklets for lottery hunts are about due. I contacted the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department in Austin and was told the Special Drawing and Regular Permit Hunting Opportunities booklets would be in Austin either the last week of June or the first week of July. If you entered the drawings last year, a book will be sent to you. Otherwise they should be available at the local TPWD on Eastex Freeway in Beaumont.

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I know we’re only into the first official week of summer amid triple-digit temperatures, but believe it or not now is a good time to plug into this year’s deer and duck hunting adventures. A little forward planning often goes a long way when opening day finally dawns.

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There has been much concern about the drought and our fish and wildlife. Sure we will get some showers and even possibly some heavy rains, but it will take several days of that to break the dry spell. Since there were so many folks concerned, I went to the most knowledgeable resource of information that I’m familiar with.

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Sabine angler catches 8 pound, 1 ounce trout to take second place in CCA STAR tourney

The very popular CCA STAR tournament is in full swing, and already there are some pretty impressive catches being brought to the scales. The heaviest trout in the Upper Coast Division is going to be tough to beat. She weighed 8 pounds, 8 ounces and was caught on the Galveston Bay complex. But get this: The second heaviest trout on the upper coast weighed 8 pounds, one ounce and came from Sabine Lake. It was weighed at the SGS Cuaseway and caught by Corey Frank.

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In our society, there is a strong belief that most pretty things are good, and vice-versa. That’s portrayed in the movies, on television, and also on the fishing scene. There are exceptions, however, and one of them is the toothy gar. There are several different species of gar and all of them have survived prehistoric times. According to some of the more learned folks they have changed little from those times until now. What has changed is many people’s attitude toward their place within at least some of the fishing community.

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The good news is that the very popular red snapper recreational season in federal waters is now open. The bad news is that it’ll close on July 18.

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Whenever the winds allow, the Gulf of Mexico blue water action is superb. There has been a lot of fresh water coming down the Mississippi River. Even so, there are good numbers of the deepwater fish cruising around out there, and they seem to be ever hungry. It is important to keep in mind that there are certain fish species that prefer blue water while others will be in the blue-green water. This situation will have a bearing on just how far out into the gulf it is necessary to go in order to locate your favorite fish species.

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Historically, late May and early June is the go-to time for our better inland saltwater fishing. The Sabine Jetty as well as the surf should also be included in that. Yes, there are good umbers of fish around practically all year long, but the action goes from good to excellent now. Sheepshead, black drum and redfish along with a few outsize speckled trout and flounder were the rule. Now all of the above along with many other species have arrived.

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