, Port Arthur, Texas


November 16, 2013

Chester Moore column: Random outdoors thoughts that are perplexing

PORT ARTHUR —   Do you ever have super random thoughts enter your head while cruising the lake or sitting on the deer stand?

   Admit it. You do and so do I, so this week I will ponder some of these thoughts, some of which are quite perplexing.

    #1-Why do fishing lures go out of style? With bass on heavily pressured lakes I realize they sort of build up a resistance to certain lures after they have seen them thousands of times but why would a Slug-Go not work today as well as it did in the early 1990s? Think about it.

    #2-Does anyone really think we will ever get feral hog numbers under control? You read a lot about the idea of controlling them but in reality, there is no way to stop the advance of hogs other than some sort of natural “cure” such as a major disease outbreak.

    #3-Since hogs have been on my mind much lately here is another one. Are hogs really as damaging to other forms of wildlife as we hear? I can understand the damage to ground nesting birds due to their rooting but hog numbers are at record levels and deer numbers throughout virtually all of their range are high. Ditto for turkeys. Have hogs really had a negative impact on them?

    #4-At some point trophy hunting of deer may become completely irrelevant. I can see the day where people with the financial resources simply pay shed antlers of raised bucks and claim as a trophy. In reality, we are not far from that right now.

    #5-Crossbows have been legal for use in the archery-only whitetail season for several years now and amazingly (sarcasm mode turned off) bow hunters have not lost opportunities, there haven’t been a plethora of crossbow-related incidents and deer numbers have remained steady.

    In my 20 plus year career of covering the outdoors, I have never seen anything as lame, unnecessary and downright childish as the opposition of crossbows by a vocal minority of the archery industry.

    I will never forget being in a room with numerous Texas bow shop owners, representatives from archery companies, landowners and state wildlife officials and having a leader of an organization tell me they even oppose crossbows for the handicapped.

    Thankfully, these people did not get their way.

    #6-The most challenging animal to hunt in Texas is the aoudad. If you purposefully seek a mature aoudad on open range or on a large high fence facility, you are up for an extreme challenge. Amazing creatures.

    #7-Does anyone care about red snapper any more? Sure, we all love to eat them but has the federal red tape nightmare surrounding the fishery killed your interest for pursuing them. That along with fuel prices has pretty much done it for me although I am not opposed to catch them.

  (To contact Chester Moore, e-mail him at . You can hear him on “Moore Outdoors” Fridays from 6-7 p.m. on Newstalk AM 560 KLVI or online at . You can watch him on “God’s Outdoors with Chester Moore” on GETV Saturdays at 11 a.m.)



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    I was in Orlando, Fla. attending the ICAST (fishing trade) show and talked with a number of top anglers including Kevin VanDam, Mike Iaconelli and Shaw Grigsby who said it was no surprise they would return considering the massive turnout for the weigh-ins and that the area welcomed them in a very special way.
    It’s far too early to speculate anything like who the top contenders will be or how the fishing will be but there are some things to keep in mind and to look for over the next few months and into the event itself.
    • Prefishing-There is a pre-fishing cutoff that usually extends to right before the Bassmaster Classic and I fully expect most of the anglers in the Elites to come back and prefish.
    Last go-round probably 2/3 of the field fished the area but this time I expect that to be just about everyone. Many of the anglers that did not pre-fish told me they expected to have a lot of water to fish but the sheer volume and diversity was almost overwhelming.
    Beginning probably in the early fall we will see many anglers fishing local waters to get a better idea on how to approach the area.
    • East to West Runs-The Elite anglers fished far and wide but I expect even more running next go-round. After launching from the Simmons Drive Boat Ramp in Orange angler Bill Lowen ran down the Intracoastal, across Galveston Bay and fished in the Clear Lake area and placed in the top 12. The more adventurous anglers will try super long runs, in my opinion, even longer than last time to try and score on big fish. The Intracoastal Canal system makes that possible.
    • Sabine River -Very few of the anglers actually fished in the Sabine River despite the event being called the “Sabine River Challenge”. I think that will change with more anglers running as far north as they can to find pockets of fish that receive little pressure and perhaps a four or five-pounder to push them over the top.
    • Bigger Turnout-Last year some 34,000 people attended the event which set a Bassmaster record for an Elite event.
     It was broken a couple of weeks later in New York but I fully expect the 2015 tournament to draw 40,000 plus. The reason they are coming back is not for the stellar fishing because while we have lots of bass, everyone knows our fishery cannot compare to Toledo Bend for example.
    The support from the public however was amazing and that is what is bringing the top anglers on the planet to fish our area.
    We will have the very best coverage of the event beginning now and leading up to it with exclusive interviews with all of the top pros with not only their thoughts on the big event but with unique tips on how you can catch more fish.
    It’s an exciting time and I look forward to bringing you special coverage on a special event.
    (To contact Chester Moore, e-mail him at You can hear him on “Moore Outdoors” Fridays from 6-7 p.m. on Newstalk AM 560 KLVI or online at or watch him on “God’ Outdoors with Chester Moore” Saturdays at 10 a.m. on

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From the Fieldhouse blog