If Southeast Texas is anything “unique” is the word.
This is especially true when it comes to outdoors activities that run the gamut from traditional to 21st century.
Here are five outdoors activities that are prime for the summer months.
Frogging: Although it is not as popular as it was when I was growing up, a fair amount of local outdoors lovers participate in frogging.
The swamps and marshes of the region provide good opportunity for big bullfrogs whose fried legs are a popular dish.
What do they taste like?
Same say chicken but I say they taste like bullfrog.
Short Rig Specks: There are not many places where anglers can fish for trout offshore.
The rigs between High Island and Cameron, La. provide awesome opportunity for big trout during the summer months. In fact, there are a dedicated contingent of anglers who prefer this to any other method of finding these sought after fish.
I have not heard many reports from the rigs yet but right now is the time and the fishing will only get better going into summer.
Herping: Have you heard of “herping”? It is searching out reptiles (mainly snakes) and counting them much as birders keep a log of their finds. Some herpers have life lists just like birders and many also engage in catching and photography of their serpentine subjects.
Our area has wonderful “herping” opportunities and in fact last week I ran into a herper in the woods near Saratoga who was searching out timber rattlesnakes, his favorite snake.
If you like snakes, “herping” may be for you. There are few places in the state with more diverse opportunities within 90 minutes.
Gator Hunting: Limited gator hunting has been opened statewide but the best alligator hunting in the state is during the fall gator season here in Southeast Texas.
We have a huge alligator population and public opportunities (by drawn permit) on state and federal properties. This pursuit has always been popular with local outdoors enthusiasts but it has grown in popularity due to the popularity of the television progam “Swamp People”.
Public Hunting: There is no region in the state with more affordable hunting opportunities than Southeast Texas. Not even close.
We have waterfowl, deer, hog and gator hunting opportunities on the JD Murphree Wildlife Management Area, Tony Houseman State Park and Blue Elbow Wildlife Management Area, Sea Rim State Park, Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge, Texas Point National Wildlife Refuge and numerous wildlife management units around Sam Rayburn, B.A. Steinhagen and Toledo Bend.
On top of that around that area we have the Sam Houston, Sabine, Davy Crockett and Angelina National Forests.
Most of the state has no public access other than draw hunt opportunities in state parks.
We are truly blessed to have some good hunting opportunities for everyone.
(To contact Chester Moore, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. You can hear him on “Moore Outdoors” Fridays from 6-7 p.m. on Newstalk AM 560 KLVI and watch him online at www.Godsoutdoors.com.)
If Southeast Texas is anything “unique” is the word.
Bassmaster Elites are coming back
The Bassmaster Elite Series returns to Southeast Texas in March 2015 to fish out of Orange.
The announcement was made last week, ahead of Bassmaster’s official tournament schedule announcement and the buzz is already strong in Southeast Texas and beyond.
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 email@example.com. You can hear him on “Moore Outdoors” Fridays from 6-7 p.m. on Newstalk AM 560 KLVI or online at www.klvi.com or watch him on “God’ Outdoors with Chester Moore” Saturdays at 10 a.m. on GETV.org)
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