Bass Champs’ Cedar Creek winner takes home $20,000

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Feb 212017

Lone Star Outdoor News

Bass Champs teams are on a roll, kicking off the North Region’s 2017 season on Cedar Creek with 252 teams participating in a $71,880 payback tournament.

Charles Buck and his son, Mitch, reeled in 23.49 pounds to clinch first place, winning $20,000.

“I’m just glad my son and I get to fish together every now and then. He just got laid off last week, so this will really help,” said Charles.

It was close, but the team of Craig Dowis and Michael Vasquez took 2nd place with 22.82 pounds for a $5,500 check.

“We were focusing on secondary points, looking for bass staging for the spawn,” Dowis said. “On our last cast, a fish broke off on us. We didn’t get to see it, but who knows? That could have been the one to put us over the top.”

Third place winners Melvin Yezak and John Yezak brought home $4,200 with 20.69 pounds.

The 9th Annual Mega Bass event on Lake Fork is coming up March 19, with $20,000 given away every single hour of the tournament. Two Skeeter boats will also be given away at the end of the day for the anglers catching the biggest bass over the slot and the biggest bass under the slot!



Feb. 25        South Region – Amistad

March 4      Central Region – LBJ

March 11    East Region – Sam Rayburn

March 19    Mega Bass – Lake Fork

March 25    South Region – Falcon

April 1         North Region – Ray Roberts

April 8         Central Region – Belton

April 22       South Region – Amistad

April 29       North Region – Lake Fork

May 13        East Region – Toledo Bend

May 20      Central Region – LBJ

June 3       North Region – Tawakoni

June 9-11    Skeeter Owner’s Tournament – Fork

June 25      Techron TX Shootout – Sam Rayburn

Oct 14-15   2017   Team Championship – TBA

Oct 21-22    12th  Annual Berkley Big Bass – Fork

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Four colors for all four seasons

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Feb 202017

Keep bass fishing simple with four basic colors

By Darlene McCormick Sanchez

Photo from James Niggemeyer

There’s room for debate, but most anglers would agree that when it comes to fishing lure color there are some basics.

After 10 years of competing on the BASS Elite Series tournament trail, James Niggemeyer, who is also a Lake Fork guide, put out a YouTube video sharing some inside information on what colors largemouth bass like regardless of season or location anywhere in the country.

“The video was done because all anglers can get carried away with color,” Niggemeyer said. “You can just sit there and stare at your tackle forever.”

So what are his go-to colors? Black-blue, junebug, green-pumpkin, watermelon-red.

Niggemeyer said that for many anglers, and especially those just getting started, sifting through a myriad of colors can be a daunting task. In his video, Niggemeyer explained that having those four basic colors on a boat would prepare anglers for anything.

Black-blue, for example, is great for overcast days or even muddy water because it shows up as a silhouette. Junebug’s purplish hue is another favorite when anglers with a little more color but still need a dark lure. Green pumpkin works across the board and can be used for anything from stained water to clear water. Watermelon red is great for clear water.

So why are there so many colors on the market? Niggemeyer said that 90 percent of them will work in a particular fishing situation, but narrowing down the lures allows him to keep it simple.

Angler Dan Phifer, of Grapevine, who regularly fishes tournaments such as Bass Champs, agreed with Niggemeyer.

“I think that’s a good place to start,” he said. “We get a little carried away with our soft plastic buying.”

Phifer said his favorites are green pumpkin, black-blue and watermelon. But he’s really a fan of green pumpkin and watermelon laminated together.

Mike Casanova, of Frisco, who frequently fishes club tournaments, pretty much agreed with the basic four Niggemeyer suggested.

“If you want to keep it basic, I can’t argue with that,” he said. “They pile up. We make it a lot more complex.”

Casanova’s favorites are watermelon and green pumpkin. But he’s not a fan of the flashy colors.

“I do believe a lot of those catch fishermen more than fish,” he said.


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 Posted by at 5:43 pm

Nice morning in quail country with nice points and retrieves. #lonestaroutdoornews #quail #quailhunting #retriever #retrieveroftheday

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Feb 192017

The post Nice morning in quail country with nice points and retrieves. #lonestaroutdoornews #quail #quailhunting #retriever #retrieveroftheday appeared first on Texas Hunting & Fishing | Lone Star Outdoor News.

 Posted by at 10:35 pm

Should be a nice night for one of these. Enjoy. #lonestaroutdoornews #deerhunting #bonfire #campfire #sickforit

 Hunting News, Instagram  Comments Off on Should be a nice night for one of these. Enjoy. #lonestaroutdoornews #deerhunting #bonfire #campfire #sickforit
Feb 172017

The post Should be a nice night for one of these. Enjoy. #lonestaroutdoornews #deerhunting #bonfire #campfire #sickforit appeared first on Texas Hunting & Fishing | Lone Star Outdoor News.

 Posted by at 10:29 pm

Take the stress out with Deer Lease Moving

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Feb 162017

Story by Deer Lease Moving

Photo by Deer Lease Moving

Every year, the end of deer season can bring about a lot of mixed emotions. Satisfaction, triumph and contentment that your goal was accomplished during the season. Frustration that the Muy Grande escaped you once again. Sadness that another season has come and gone and the pure enjoyment of sitting around a campfire with friends and family is now on hold; or stress — the stress of “How in the heck am I going to find the time and the manpower to move all of this stuff off of this lease to the new one?”

Welcome to Deer Lease Moving, where we aim to take the STRESS out of hunting. It has been said that a hunter moves ranches on average every four years. There are many reasons why a person would change a deer lease, but no matter the reason the work that needs to be done is still the same. It takes hours/days to accomplish, it takes a lot of hard work and it can be dangerous. Sometimes, if the move is not on your own terms, the timeline can be downright unforgiving when a landowner is moving you off quickly.

Photo by Deer Lease Moving

Deer Lease Moving is here to take all of that off your plate. We can go to your old lease, take down all of your equipment, load it, haul it and even set it back up on your new place. Like many hunters, you might be in between leases. No worries, we can store all of your equipment for you as well until you are ready to have it set up. If you are like some hunters, you might have equipment that you no longer want which is where our buy/sell and consignment options come in handy. We can take unwanted equipment off your hands and get you something in return for it.

We can also administer or coordinate helicopter game counts for you. There is no better way to know what kind of a ranch you are about to lease than to see it from the air! Even on your current lease, we can game count as well.

Our goal is to provide the type of service that eliminates the stress in leasing out hunting property. It’s a seamless process for you, putting all the burden on us, which is the way we like it. Let us do the heavy lifting and worry about how and when to get it done. All that is left for you to do is sit back and reminisce about the campfires, friends and big deer, knowing that next year will get here sooner than later. And this time, a lot easier.

Deer Lease Moving
(512) 200-8774

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 Posted by at 7:27 pm

BLACK riflescopes handle AR-shooters’ needs

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Feb 162017

Written by Craig Nyhus, Lone Star Outdoor News
Photo by Nikon Sport Optics

AR enthusiasts do it all in Texas — from precision rifle shooting and hunting to fast, rapid shooting. Nikon’s new BLACK riflescope series is designed for what Texas shooters like to do. The new category of dedicated optics includes models specifically engineered for both precision long-range rifle and action-shooting AR enthusiasts.

For the precision rifle shooter, Nikon’s BLACK X1000 is offered in a range of 4-16×50 and 6-24×50 models with X-MRAD or X-MOA tactical-style reticles synchronized to elevated windage and elevation turrets. Each of the new reticle designs present the shooter with a visually clean, yet highly functional and advanced tool for estimating range or maintaining holdovers.
Rapid-action shooters looking for rapid-action targeting capability with AR/MSR platforms can rely on the new BLACK FORCE1000 1-4×24 riflescope with capped turrets and SpeedForce reticle.  When the riflescope is dialed down to its true 1x magnification, the reticle’s illuminated double horseshoe center portion serves as quick reference for reaction-speed target acquisition and engagement, as well as for establishing moving target leads. The SpeedForce MOA reticle also integrates BDC circles and hash marks for precise intermediate-range target holdovers.
The new BLACK series reticles can be applied to virtually any shooting application, regardless of caliber or ballistic performance and can be further optimized for specific shooting situations utilizing Nikon’s Spot On Ballistic Match Technology.

BLACK series riflescopes all feature a 30mm main body tube built with aircraft-grade aluminum alloy and Type 3 hard anodizing, providing exceptional ruggedness and optimum strength-to-weight ratios. Each riflescope has an optical system built from Nikon’s lead- and arsenic-free glass Eco-Glass, which is optimized with the company’s full multilayer coating on all air-to-glass lens surfaces.  Spring-loaded instant zero-reset turrets provide precise, repeatable corrections on all BLACK riflescope models. And like all Nikon riflescopes, the new BLACK series is backed by the company’s No Fault policy for repair or replacement.

Nikon’s new BLACK riflescope series will be available this spring in these models:
BLACK FORCE1000 1-4.24 Matte IL SPEEDFORCE $399.95
BLACK X1000 4-16x50SF Matte X-MOA $499.95
BLACK X1000 4-16x50SF Matte IL X-MOA $599.95
BLACK X1000 4-16x50SF Matte IL X-MRAD $599.95
BLACK X1000 6-124x50SF Matte IL X-MRAD $649.95

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 Posted by at 4:59 pm

East Texas landowner revamps property for deer, ducks and bass

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Feb 152017

By Craig Nyhus
Lone Star Outdoor News

When Steve Favre bought what he named Riverview Farms in 2002, he had a vision. The vision is now reality.

“This was row crop land,” he said of the 1,450-acre, low-fenced property along the Sulphur River on the Delta/Lamar County border in Northeast Texas.

After buying the ranch, he got to work. For the deer, the work involve a lot of prescribed burning, developing food plots and getting rid of Johnson grass.

“We also to multiple disking, spraying and planted 11 native species,” Favre said. “And then there were the cedars — most of them were reduced by burning — it’s fun watching them explode into flames. Then we planted 220,000 hardwood trees, including oaks and persimmons.
Riverview Farms became part of the Managed Lands Deer Program, and the deer population and numbers were addressed.”

“There were fair numbers of deer when I bought the place,” Favre said. “But the quality of bucks was really bad — it was hard to find anything that would score 100 inches.” Favre quickly learned he had 10 does for every buck, and with help from biologists, permits were obtained, the doe population was reduced, and the quality of animals increased tenfold.

“We shot more than 20 does each year for four years, and no bucks,” he said. “Now, the ratio is 1.5 does for every buck, and the average buck ranges from the high 140s to 160. East Texas isn’t known for big bucks, but the genetics are here if you give them the right environment.”

The ranch isn’t a commercial operation, and the available hunts are reserved for family, friends and hunts donated to charities. Two years ago, the deer management effort paid off.

“I shot a 25-inch wide buck that scored 165,” Favre said. “The fact that I squeezed the trigger on this deer was the easiest part, it’s creating the environment where they can thrive and exist that was the most rewarding.”

Sharing his information with the neighbors also has paid off.

“The people all around are starting to do the same thing, so we are all on the same page,” Favre said. “Some contacted me and I contacted others.” Favre’s favorite hunting, though, involves ducks, and even though the Sulphur River was there, there was little duck habitat or food on the property.

“I needed water for ducks,” he said. “A series of levees stretching 4.5 miles was designed by Ducks Unlimited. They target a 16- to 18-inch average depth, and we pushed up some islands.” Dakota, the Lone Star Outdoor News’ newsroom dog, went on his first real duck hunt at Riverview Farms, where three hunters saw waves of green-winged teal, and good numbers of gadwall, wigeon and mallards. Dakota retrieved 16 of the 18 ducks brought in.
Favre didn’t ignore fishing opportunities, either, and created a fishing lake on the property.

“The largest bass caught was 9.5 pounds,” he said. “We have to do fish shocking to reduce the total number of bass each year.”

Favre’s efforts at Riverview Farms haven’t gone unrecognized. He received the Delta County Outstanding Wildlife Conservationist award from the Soil and Water Conservation District and the Region IV Texas Conservation award in 2015.
“I’m extremely proud of creating something from almost nothing,” Favre said, noting the efforts have been at considerable cost.

“All of the money is outgoing.”

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 Posted by at 9:46 pm

Modern rifle and gear take the fear out of shooting

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Feb 132017

By Darlene McCormick Sanchez
Lone Star Outdoor News

In the traditional world of hunting, the idea of teaching youths to use an AR-15 type rifle with a silencer to shoot a deer isn’t the first thing that comes to mind.

But that may be about to change — albeit slowly. With the proliferation of modern guns and possibility of silencer purchases becoming less restrictive, novice hunters may learn to hunt in a way their parents never did.

The underlying reason for the movement will likely stem from the advantages semiautomatic rifles offer, according to Andrew Houser, an owner of Modern Outfitters in the Dallas area.
“They are gaining in popularity in Texas,” Houser said, adding they are perfectly suitable for deer or hog hunting.

Another factor that’s increasing the popularity of modern rifles is the cool factor. With their coloring, custom triggers, match barrels that increase accuracy and lighter weight, these rifles are the equivalent to a supped up sports car.

Houser taught his three children to hunt with his modern carbine rifles and silencers for simple reasons: The rifles are relatively lightweight and have adjustable stocks to fit smaller frames, and the silencers cut down on noise and recoil.

The loud noise and kick make children afraid to shoot guns, and it makes them develop bad habits like flinching when they take a shot, he said.

“A silencer eats recoil,” he added. Using one with a .308 cuts the recoil to something akin to shooting a .223.

Houser said he has purposefully put empty rounds in a .30-06 to demonstrate that most adults will jerk when they pull the trigger because they expect a blast and recoil. These types of bad habits aren’t developed when children are trained on nontraditional rifles and equipment from the beginning.

Another issue is missing that teachable moment in the blind when a game animal approaches. Children with ear protection have a hard time hearing adults instructing them on shooting. A silencer pretty much eliminates that problem, plus it won’t scare away any remaining animals.
Of course, cost is what drives many parents to buy youth rifles because they are inexpensive. Families spend $400 on a youth rifle, but have no use for it once the child matures.

Houser pointed out that an AR-15 type rifle costs more, but it can be used from childhood to adulthood. Modern rifles can also be used by other adults in the family, making it an economical purchase.

Houser’s children — Natalie, and twins Jack and Luke —have used modern rifles since they were around 6 or 7 years old. Natalie, now 12, said many kids get their first impressions of guns from Hollywood. Guns seem loud and scary when watching people shoot them in the movies.
But when she actually shot a gun with a silencer, her experience was totally different than what she expected.
“I think it made it a lot less scary,” she said.

While she has been raised to shoot a modern rifle with a silencer, she also knows first hand what it’s like to shoot a traditional rifle. About two years ago a friend asked her to shoot a rifle while at a deer lease. She put on earmuffs and pulled the trigger. What she remembers most is the kick and the noise.

With her rifle it’s different: “Instead, it just glides back and keeps you steady and focused,” she said. This year she shot a 10-point buck with a Modern Carbine MC6 in 6.8 SPC with Leupold MARK6 scope and a Surefire Genesis silencer.

Her 9-year-old brothers both seem to like using modern hunting rifles as well. Jack said he likes the silencers because when he’s hunting pigs they don’t run away because of the noise.
“It made me fearless shooting a gun. I just think it’s really cool,” Jack said.

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Boat light strips must meet USCG standards

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Feb 102017

By Darlene McCormick Sanchez

Lone Star Outdoor News

Photo from BoatUS: Light strips like these could run afoul of rules.

Inexpensive LED light strips may be appealing for anglers who want to install them as navigation lights on fishing boats, but officials are warning that could lead to a citation or even an accident.

Advances in technology have made LEDs seem like a good solution for navigation and aesthetic lighting, but the U.S. Coast Guard has issued a warning that some of the new lights don’t meet standards and could increase the chances of a collision.

Texas Game Warden Assistant Commander Cody Jones, who serves as the state’s head boating law administrator, said wardens across the state have been issuing warnings and some citations because of improper lighting.

Jones said boat owners are running into trouble when lights aren’t USCG approved for navigation or interfere with navigation. It’s up to wardens to enforce USCG regulations whether boats are operated in freshwater or saltwater.

“That’s where most folks are getting caught up. You just can’t rig up a boat with lights,” he said.

Lake Fork Game Warden Derek Spitzer said he understands that people like the light strips, and it’s hard for people to accept they aren’t allowed. A memo came out a few months ago from the department regarding the USCG’s stance on the issue.

“The Coast Guard makes those rules,” Spitzer said.

But the issue with LED strip lights used for navigation is with the cut-off angles and their lack of approval by the USCG. Jones said that the LED strips have yet to meet the angling requirements that help boaters determine navigation based on the visibility of the green and red lights. If a manufacturer came up with a rope or strip light that could meet the angle requirements and gained the proper certification, then he doesn’t see why the USCG would not approve it.

The USCG reports that some boaters have hazardously installed unapproved red and green LED strip lighting on the bow, which hampers other boaters’ efforts to avoid collision, according to a press release from BoatUS, a recreational boating association.

Another issue with strip lights is that they lack the certification requirements of the USCG. Unapproved lighting is typically less expensive, making them a tempting choice for uninformed consumers. Use of lights that do not provide the proper chromaticity, luminous intensity, or cut-off angles could result in a boating violation or potentially cause an accident.

The USCG says things to look for on packaging or the light itself include: USCG approval, the rated visibility of the light in nautical miles, meets ABYC A-16, name of the laboratory conducting the test, date tested, along with manufacturer, and model number.

Jones said decorative lighting cannot interfere with navigation lights. That means boaters can’t just add LED strip lights to go with approved navigation lights. Boaters could receive a citation, he said. Overpowering LED lights could pose an issue, too. For example, a bright white rope light might overshadow the red and green navigational lights, or be so bright they make it difficult for the driver to see. USCG rules say that decorative lighting cannot: be mistaken for navigation lights, impair the vision or distinctive character of approved navigation lights, or interfere with the operator’s ability to maintain a proper lookout.

Also of concern is that some of the decorative blue lights could be mistaken for law enforcement lights. Jones pointed out that lights that flash with the beat of a speaker, for example, could be mistaken for a flashing blue light. Another example would be blue underwater LED lights can appear to be flashing if there is wave action, giving the appearance of a flashing blue light.

The point is that boaters need to be aware that any old light won’t suffice when it comes down to safety.

“We’ve tried to put out information. Game wardens like to educate before they enforce anything,” Jones said.

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 Posted by at 5:45 pm