If you have youngsters interested in the outdoors, don’t forget Saturday’s local celebration of National Hunting and Fishing Day at Waddill Wildlife Education Center.
It runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and features a kid’s fishing tournament, giveaways of rods and reels to the first 50 registered youngsters, goodie bags for the next 100 and food, and a chance to launch an arrow from a bow, to fire a shotgun at a clay target and feel the kick from a blackpower rifle, to get up close to a baby alligator and a hawk, to learn the art of casting a fly, and so many exhibits that it takes up the entire day to see it all.
There’ll be wild-game tasting and other food and drink, and best of all there are no fees.
Waddill is on North Flannery Road between Choctaw Drive and Greenwell Spring Road. There’s ample parking and shuttles to get you and your family into the center.
Changing the rule-r
Cypremort Point isn’t the easiest place to fish — for pleasure or otherwise — during the summer, even in the fading days of summer, and maybe that explains the departure from the norm for last Saturday’s final regular-season event on the Louisiana Saltwater Series-Redfish circuit.
LASS fits the “otherwise” category, and tournament director Sam Barbera heard grumblings from anglers who couldn’t scout the vast Vermilion Bay area for redfish that measure 16 or more inches but less than 27 inches long. Obviously the longer the redfish, the more weight for this two-redfish-limit gathering.
Barbera said he came up with the idea of drawing for a max-length size limit by putting five ping-pong balls in a hat with numbers ranging from 23 to 27 inches. No. 26 was drawn, and that was the size limit Bubba Corbin and Tristan Ordone used to win with a 13.78-pound total. The previous five LASS events this year demanded much higher stringer totals to claim first-place money. No matter, qualifiers are lining up for the Oct. 9-10 LASS Championship at Venice Marina.
Gonzales national touring pro Greg Hackney gave the other 49 bass fishermen in the Toyota Angler of the Year tournament a run for their money and earned thousands in bonuses from his three-day run that ended Sunday on Sturgeon Bay in Wisconsin.
Hackney led the first two days and earned $1,000 for his 21-pound, 7-ounce heavyweight catch and another $500 for his Day 2 lead.
Then he added $27,000 for his eighth-place overall finish in the Angler of Year standings, a spot that earned him a berth in March’s Bassmaster Classic.
Chris Zaldain won on Sturgeon Bay with a 53-4 total and earned $30,000 for his sixth-place AOY finish. Aaron Martens took home $100,000 for his fourth AOY title.
More on Martens
Last week’s story about fishing line and the need to often re-tie lures when using monofilament line reminded of an interview with Martens three years ago the day before the Classic on the Red River.
Maybe the reason Martens won AOY top money for the fourth time is his penchant for details, and that day was about braided line. He said he uses braided line, but spools it on the same reels on the same rods. He said braid can cut into the guides on a rod and that re-spooling monofilament on the same reel will damage any monofilament line as it’s retrieved through the guides.