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Nov
18

2017 – Hunting Trips Reports

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Categories : Hunting Reports
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Nov
18

Duck Hunt Rotation

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The following is a rotation list for self-guided duck hunts on central Texas lakes within 90 miles of Austin.  We will hunt either Granger Lake near Taylor, Stillhouse Hollow Lake near Salado,  Belton Lake near Temple, or Somerville Lake near Somerville in their Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs).  All four lakes are administered by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (CoE). 

I, Randy Rowley, can take up to three adult hunters (four counting me). As my boat’s motor is broke we’ll walk in (up to a mile walk one way).  We’ll either hunt from shore on buckets, stools, or sitting on our rears or stand in the water next to trees.  We’ll use natural cover.

We’ll split the vehicle gas.  We’ll also stop at Whataburger on the way to the lake.  We also might stop for lunch on the way home.

Granger does not require a CoE lake hunting permit.  However, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) leases Granger’s WMA’s; consequently, a TPWD Public Hunting Permit is required.  The cost is $48/year.  If we decide to hunt Granger we will hunt in the San Gabriel, Willis Creek, or Sore Finger WMAs.  Granger is 41 miles from my house.

Stillhouse and Belton do not require a TPWD Public Hunting Permit nor a CoE lake hunting permit (see http://www.swf-wc.usace.army.mil/stillhouse/Recreation/Hunting.asp). If we decide to hunt Stillhouse we will hunt in the Union Grove WMA on the island (the side depends on the direction of the wind).  Stillhouse is 11 miles further from my house than Granger, so we’ll have to leave 15 minutes earlier than we would if we were going to hunt Granger.  If we decide to hunt Belton, we will hunt either the Owl Creek or the Iron Bridge WMAs.  Belton is 36 miles further than Granger, so we’ll have to leave 45 minutes earlier than we would if we were going to hunt Granger.

Somerville does not require a CoE lake hunting permit.  Nor does it require a TPWD Public Hunting Permit in the CoE day hunt area (you will need one if you hunt in the TPWD day hunt area; you also must hunt out of your boat at least 200 yards from shore if you hunt in that area).  Somerville is 54 miles further than Granger, so we’ll have to leave an hour earlier than we would if we were going to hunt Granger.

Hunters who want to participate must sign, if they have not already, a lifetime FCS Liability Waiver.

I will lead hunts on the following days:

  • Saturday, 11/18/17
  • Saturday, 12/02/17
  • Saturday, 12/23/17
  • Tuesday, 12/26/17
  • Monday, 01/01/18
  • Saturday, 01/06/18

What to Bring

Bring your license and stamps, gun, shells, headlamp or flashlight, bucket or stool, calls (optional), chest waders (breathable are recommended as you’ll get hot quick walking in and out), camo hunting clothes (including a face mask or face paint – absolutely essential), snacks (optional), and drinks (optional).  I recommend Winchester Xpert shells or equivalent in 2 shot (the 1550 FPS variant), chambered for 3 inch (if your gun is also chambered for 3 inch).  I do not recommend anything smaller than 4 shot.  10 gauges and 3 1/2 inch shells in 3 1/2 inch chambered 12 gauges are overkill for ducks, in my opinion.  I usually starts out with an improved cylinder choke.  If the ducks aren’t coming into the dekes (and my only shots as passing shots) I’ll switch to a modified.  Steel shot (if of adequate size) will kill ducks.  There is no need for Hevi-shot, Tungsten, Bismuth, etc.  You’ll pay a lot more for those shells and they aren’t needed.

I have 93 decoys (23 redheads, 14 pintails, 13 gadwall, 13 teal, 11 mallards, six canvasbacks, six buffleheads, two widgeons, a pulsator duck, two quiver ducks, a motorized duck, and a wind duck (that I only use when it’s windy enough to spin the wings and when it’s too windy to use the motorized duck).  In addition, FCS has 33 decoys (25 teal and 8 wood ducks) in its inventory.  Combining my decoys and the FCS decoys I have 126 decoys.  However, I’ll only bring decoys for the types of ducks found on the lake that we’re going to.  For example, I’ve never seen canvasbacks or buffleheads on Somerville or Granger, so those will stay in my garage when we go there.  Plus we’re limited to what we’ll be able to carry, which will be at most around 36 decoys.

We will hunt until 9:00 – 10:30 AM, depending on how the ducks are flying and the weather conditions (ducks often fly longer when it is overcast).

After a hunter goes on a hunt he or she is moved to the bottom of the rotation. If I contact a hunter and he or she cannot go I will contact the next person on the list.

Being on this rotation is a privilege and is not a FCS membership benefit. I can and will remove a person from the rotation for any of the following reasons (this list is not all inclusive):

  • Not hunting in a safe manner, including deliberately not following my instructions during a hunt.
  • Not paying for your share of the gas or fixing items (that are not yours) that you broke (including decoys that you shot and sank).
  • Not helping during a hunt (including not helping get the boat back on the trailer).
  • Not controlling your dog during a hunt.
  • Indicating that you will attend a hunt and then not showing up.
  • A pattern of being more than a few minutes late.
  • A pattern of canceling at the last minute.
  • Not returning my phone calls and/or emails.
  • Not complying with the FCS Safety and Shooting rules, Hunting and Fishing Rules, and Game Law Clarifications during a hunt.

The following people are on the Duck Hunt Rotation for the 2017 – 2018 season:

  1. Ian Daniels
  2. Ryan Rowley
  3. Garrett Eklund
  4. Jake Dumaine
  5. Wayne Weilnau
  6. Binh Chu
  7. Ken Miller
  8. Colin Jackson

The following people are on the permanent Duck Hunt Rotation:

  1. Roy Brigman
  2. Tim Price
  3. Kevin Wall
  4. Harry Biggs
  5. Bill Bebee
  6. Jerry Stafford
  7. Thomas Palmer
  8. Jim Gault
  9. Jim McGee
  10. Robby Wilson
  11. Will Peterson
  12. Justin Painter
  13. Ron and Nathan Petru
  14. Ron Palmer
  15. Bruce Crockett
  16. Bill Smith
  17. Ron Denison
  18. Wayne Weilnau
  19. Jeff Cates
  20. Kyle Wickham
  21. Brian Suter
  22. Steve Bird
  23. David Lesser and son
  24. Mike Thibodeaux and sons
  25. Jonathan Sherwin
  26. Kelvin Cheung
  27. Jeff Peterson and sons
  28. Mike Calio
  29. Robert Butts
  30. Sam Martin
  31. Ian Daniels
  32. Binh Chu
  33. Chrispy Harden
  34. Ken Miller
  35. Ryan Rowley
  36. Burl Fulenwider
  37. Garrett Eklund
  38. Colin Jackson
  39. Jake Dumaine

Let me know at randywrowley@gmail.com (my preference) or 512-922-2484 if you would like to be added to this rotation. You do not have to be an FCS member to be added to this rotation.

Categories : Duck Rotation
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Nov
14

Event Planning Distribution

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Here is the list of which officer will oversee which events for 2017.

Randy Rowley will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events:

  • FCS Meetings (six events)
  • Ministry Event  – Wild Game Dinner (one event)
  • Self-chartered Bass Fishing Trips (five events; Randy’s bass rotation is in effect)
  • Self-guided Coastal Duck Hunts (two events)
  • Self-guided Inland Duck Hunts (six events; Randy’s duck rotation is in effect)
  • Semi-guided Hog Hunt (one event)
  • Self-guided Hog Hunt (one event)

Total = 22 events

Bruce Crockett will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events:

  • Sporting Clays Tournaments (17 events)

Total = 17 events

Steve Baker will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events:

  • Self-guided San Saba Dove Hunts (four events)
  • Sporting Clays Shoots (11 events; one includes a youth group)

Total = 15 events

Ian Daniels will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting on the following event:

  • Guided Inland Waterfowl Hunts (five events; three guided duck hunts, a guided teal hunt, and a guided goose hunt)

Total = 5 events

Michael Armstrong will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events:

  • FCS Banquet (one event)
  • Guided Upland Bird Hunts (one event)
  • South Texas Dove Hunt (one event)

Total = 3 events

Daryl Shipper will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events:

  • Chartered Freshwater Striped/Hybrid Bass Fishing Trip (one event)
  • Self-chartered Bay Fishing Trip (one event)

Total = 2 events

Art Barrera will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events:

  • Self-guided Uvalde Dove Hunts (two events)

Total = 2 events

Ken Miller will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following event:

  • 24-hour Sporting Clays Shoot (one event)

Total = 1 event

Grand Total = 67 events

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Here is the list of which officer will oversee which events for 2018.

Randy Rowley will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events:

  • 24-hour Sporting Clays Shoot (one event)
  • FCS Meetings (six events)
  • Guided Upland Bird Hunt (one event)
  • Ministry Event  – Wild Game Dinner (one event)
  • Self-chartered Bass Fishing Trips (11 events; Randy’s bass rotation is in effect)
  • Self-guided Coastal Blasts and Casts (Duck Hunts and Bay Fishing Trips) (two events)
  • Self-guided Dove Hunts (San Saba) (four events)
  • Self-guided Inland Duck Hunts (six events; Randy’s duck rotation is in effect)
  • Self-guided Hog Hunt (one event)

Total = 33 events

Bruce Crockett will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events:

  • Sporting Clays Tournaments (17 events)
  • Sporting Clays Shoots (12 events; one includes a youth group)

Total = 29 events

Ian Daniels will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting on the following event:

  • Guided Inland Waterfowl Hunts (six events; four guided duck hunts, a guided teal hunt, and a guided goose hunt)

Total = 6 events

Art Barrera will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events :

  • Self-guided Uvalde Dove Hunts (two events)
  • Semi-guided Hog Hunt (one event)

Total = 3 events

Daryl Shipper will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following events:

  • Chartered Freshwater Striped/Hybrid Bass Fishing Trip (one event)
  • Self-chartered Bay Fishing Trip (one event)

Total = 2 events

Michael Armstrong will oversee planning, promotion, and reporting of the following event:

  • FCS Banquet (one event)

Total = 1 event

Grand Total = 74 events

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Nov
11

Upcoming Events

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 November (date TBD) Guided Goose Hunt

FCS will have a Guided Goose Hunt in November with Rayce Jenkins near El Campo. Rayce will let Ian Daniels know when the geese start to come in, so it may be short notice.

Cost and what to bring:  The guide fee is $125/hunter, not counting tip. It is highly recommended that you stay in a motel in El Campo or Wharton the night before, as it’s a 140 mile drive from Austin. Two hunters per room with two queen or double beds is around $50/person.  Randy Rowley recommends that you bring your license and stamps, gun, shells, headlamp or flashlight, chest waders (breathable are recommended as you’ll get hot quick walking in and out), camo hunting clothes (including a face mask or face paint – absolutely essential), snacks (optional), and drinks (optional).  Randy recommends Winchester Xpert shells or equivalent in BBB shot, chambered for 3″ or 3 1/2″.  More details to come.

RSVP and deposit required.  RSVP to Ian at idaniels@austin.rr.com or 512-633-2221.

11/11/17 ‘Give ‘Em the Bird’ NSCA Sporting Clays Tournament

FCS will participate in the next Capitol City Trap & Skeet Club (8707 Lindell Lane, 512-272-4707) sporting clays tournament on Saturday, 11/11/17. There is an on-line registration form (pre-registration is requested, not required).  The main event (100 targets) price is $70.  We can have groups of up to five but must have a group of at least three (not all have to be FCS members).  We may have time to shoot a practice round of skeet.  Note that if you are not a National Association (NSCA) member you will be shooting Hunter (or Shooter) Class, which means that you will not be eligible to win any prize money, nor will your score be posted on their website.  Membership with the NSCA is $40 per year.  There will also be a 50 Target 5-Stand Event, 50 Target Side Event, and Concurrent options.  Please RSVP to Bruce Crockett at bmc55@att.net512-244-1555 (Home), or 512-970-7797 (Cell).  You can also email or call him if you have any questions.

11/18/17 Sporting Clays Shoot

Our next monthly Sporting Clays Shoot will be on Saturday, 11/18/17, from 9:00 – 11:00 AM at the Capitol City Trap & Skeet Club.  The gates open at 9:00.  We will gather by the front door of their clubhouse at 9:05.

We will shoot their six station – 50 target Corporate/Hunter course, which is their easiest course (or a 12 station – 50 target Corporate course, if available).  You can shoot singles, report pairs or true pairs… or you can follow the menu at each station which is a mix of true pairs and report pairs.  We keep score just for fun and keep a history log on the web site so you can see how you have improved over time.  We will brag about our scores, and pass around the excuses and catch you up on our near term planned events.

RSVP to Steve Baker at Steve.Baker@btasystems.com or 512-751-5744.

Approximate schedule:
9:00 AM – Sporting clays
10:45 AM – Scores and announcements
11:00 AM – Depart (Or, stick around and shoot 5-stand, skeet or the main course.)

Who should come:  Members and guests, including ladies and youth, both new shooters and experienced.  We usually have from 10-20 participants, and we break up into groups of 4-5.  Note that the larger the group, the longer it will take to shoot.  We recommend all shooters be at least 10 years old.  For youths we suggest a 20 gauge that fits the child (if a youth shoots a .410 he or she will probably miss a lot and may get discouraged).  We often have new shooters and delight in teaching others what we have learned.

Cost and what to bring:  Each 50 round course is $21.65/person (includes tax).  If you don’t have a shotgun you can shoot with one of us and use ours (just let Randy know that you don’t have one).  Most of us shoot 12 gauge, but 20 gauge is good also.  Capitol City requires eye and ear protection (available free of charge at Capitol City).  They sell shotgun shells if you need them (but you can get them cheaper at Academy, Wal-Mart, etc.).  You’ll need to bring three boxes of shells if you plan to shoot both sporting clays and 5-stand/skeet.  Randy recommends Winchester Game Loads / Federal Game and Target Loads / Estate Dove Loads / Rio Game Loads / Remington Sure Shot Heavy Dove Loads / Winchester Heavy Dove Loads / Estate Dove and Target Loads. All of which are sometimes available at Academy.  1 oz or 1-1/8 oz loads and 1250-1300 FPS and 7-1/2 or 8 shot work well.  They all sell for $5.50-7.00 / box.  All six are great dove/quail loads in addition to being good clay target loads. If you’re a dove/quail hunter, Randy recommends that for you shoot sporting clays with the same load that you use to hunt dove/quail.  This enables you to develop consistent leads for similarly sized targets.  Most of the targets on their Corporate/Hunter course are designed for skeet chokes, but improved cylinder (IC) works just fine.

In the event of rain:  Light rain – we shoot.  Heavy rain – we stay home.

December or January (date TBD) Coastal Blast and Cast (Duck Hunt and Bay Fishing Trip)

FCS will host a self-guided Coastal Blast and Cast (Duck Hunt and Bay Fishing Trip) in either December 2017 or January 2018 at Port O’Connor.  The exact date will be worked out with Wayne Weilnau and Daryl Shipper, as we’ll be using their bay boats.  We’ll stay at Wayne’s house in Port O’Connor.  We’ll probably hunt on Friday afternoon, fish on Saturday morning, hunt on Saturday afternoon, and fish on Sunday morning.
Cost and what to bring:  We’ll eat out and share the vehicle gas and boat gas.  Randy Rowley recommends that you bring your license and stamps, gun, shells, headlamp or flashlight, bucket or stool, chest waders (breathable are recommended as you’ll get hot quick walking in and out), camo hunting clothes (including a face mask or face paint – absolutely essential), snacks (optional), and drinks (optional).  He recommend Winchester Xpert shells or equivalent in 2 shot (the 1550 FPS variant), chambered for 3 inch (if your gun is also chambered for 3 inch).  He does not recommend anything smaller than 4 shot.  10 gauges and 3 1/2 inch shells in 3 1/2 inch chambered 12 gauges are overkill for ducks, in his opinion.  He usually starts out with an improved cylinder choke.  If the ducks aren’t coming into the dekes (and his only shots as passing shots) he’ll switch to a modified.  Steel shot (if of adequate size) will kill ducks.  There is no need for Hevi-shot, Tungsten, Bismuth, etc.  You’ll pay a lot more for those shells and they aren’t needed.
RSVP required to Randy.  RSVP to randywrowley@gmail.com (his preference) or 512-922-2484.  Also contact Randy if you have any questions.

12/7/17 FCS Meeting and Venison Stew

Our next FCS Meeting (social activity) will be on Thursday, 12/7/17, 7:00 – 9:30 PM at Wayne Weilnau’s home (16100 Fritsch Cove, Austin, 512-388-3340 – Home, 512-589-4120 – Cell). The meeting will feature venison stew.  The cost will be approximately $5/person. RSVP to Randy Rowley at randywrowley@gmail.com (his preference) or 512-922-2484. Also contact Randy if you have any questions.

Schedule:

7:00 PM – fellowship and eat dinner

8:00 PM – president’s report, upcoming events, and short devotional

8:30 PM – DVD

9:30 PM – depart

12/9/17, 12/16/17, and 1/6/17 Guided Duck Hunts (Marquez)

FCS will have three guided duck hunts (on 12/9/17, 12/16/17, and 1/6/17) with Ricky Eldridge near Marquez near the Navasota River. Ricky’s family owns three miles of riverbank, which enables them to set up blinds on his land. They also have ponds (the last two years we have hunted ponds).  They usually have good numbers of mallards and wood ducks, along with teal, gadwalls, redheads, GWT, shoveler (spoon bill), etc.  Six of us killed 28 ducks on the 12/14/15 hunt and five of us killed 14 ducks on the 12/18/16 hunt.

Cost and what to bring: The guide fee is $125/hunter, not counting tip. It is recommended that you spend the night in Franklin or Marquez the night before, as it is a 100 mile drive. Two hunters per room with two queen or double beds is around $50/person. Randy Rowley recommends that you bring your license and stamps, gun, shells, headlamp or flashlight, bucket or stool, chest waders (breathable are recommended as you’ll get hot quick walking in and out), camo hunting clothes (including a face mask or face paint – absolutely essential), snacks (optional), and drinks (optional).  He recommend Winchester Xpert shells or equivalent in 2 shot (the 1550 FPS variant), chambered for 3 inch (if your gun is also chambered for 3 inch).  He does not recommend anything smaller than 4 shot.  10 gauges and 3 1/2 inch shells in 3 1/2 inch chambered 12 gauges are overkill for ducks, in his opinion.  He usually starts out with an improved cylinder choke.  If the ducks aren’t coming into the dekes (and his only shots as passing shots) he’ll switch to a modified.  Steel shot (if of adequate size) will kill ducks.  There is no need for Hevi-shot, Tungsten, Bismuth, etc.  You’ll pay a lot more for those shells and they aren’t needed.

The 12/9/17 and  12/16/17 hunts are full.  Contact Ian Daniels at idaniels@austin.rr.com or 512-633-2221 to be added to his will-call list in case someone drops out.  RSVP to Ian for the 1/6/17 hunt at the same email address or phone number.

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Event participants are expected to follow the FCS Rules of Conduct.

Event participants will be required to sign FCS liability waivers if they have not already done so.

For directions to FCS events use this map.

FCS membership is not required in order to participate or attend FCS events; however, if you are interested here is how to join.

Members and guests, feel free to bring your spouse, child, and/or a friend (but RSVP for him, her, or them and pay in advance, if required)!

People who are 18 years of age or older are considered to be adults for purposes of figuring out a person’s share of lodging, food, gas, etc.  For dividing up food costs, for example, minors may be treated as adults, depending on their size (e.g., a 14 year old boy who eats as much as a man will be charged as a man, and not as a child).

The event coordinators are told dozens of things each work day.  They also are told numerous things pertaining to FCS each week.  With the amount of information that they receive they will inevitably forget some of it.  Therefore, it is much better for you to RSVP via email than to call them.  (If you call them, please follow it up with an email.)  When they receive an RSVP via email they will move the email to a folder (e.g., Lometa Blast and Cast).  It is then simple for them to make a list of who will attend the event.  Some events have space limitations and they have to ensure that we do not bring too many people.  Please help them to prevent overbooking by emailing your RSVP to them.  Also, if you text them be sure to let them know who you are.

Be aware that for events where we have a limit on the number of people that we can take that the hierarchy preference is as follows:

  1. Supporting members
  2. Spouses and minor children of supporting members
  3. Members who are not current in their dues
  4. Spouses and minor children of members who are not current in their dues
  5. Guests
  6. Spouses and minor children of guests

To quote the old American Express TV commercial “Membership has its privileges.”

Categories : Events, Upcoming Events
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Nov
02

Duck Hunt ?’s

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General
What are the appropriate stamps needed?  Texas Migratory Bird Stamp ($7) and Federal Duck Stamp ($27).  Both are available at Academy, Wal-Mart, etc.
Is the ammo steel shot?  Do you need specific chokes rated for steel or do chokes usually handle steel shot without issue?  Yes, non-lead (toxic) shot is required.  You can buy chokes that are designed for steel shot or use regular ones.  If you do the latter, know that your choke will behave as a tighter choke (e.g., improved cylinder will behave as a modified).
I wear a size medium shirt (and a 40L suit), would you still suggest large waders?  I suggest that you get boot-foot waders (with a built in boot) rather than stockingfoot waders that requires a shoe be worn over the stockingfoot, as your feet will get a lot colder with stockingfoot waders, plus it’s hard to find stockingfoot waders in camo.  Boot-foot waders are sized by shoe size; however, you can get them in regular and stout.  For boot-foot waders either get breathable or neoprene.  I wear my breathable ones when it’s not as cold.  I wear my neoprene ones when it’s colder.  Wearing neoprene waders when it’s not cold outside will result in you being too warm and sweating a lot.  So if you only buy one pair of waders get breathable ones, as you can always put more clothes under them.  Here is a pair that Academy sells – https://www.academy.com/shop/pdp/magellan-outdoors-mens-tredlite-400-breathable-wader#repChildCatid=4783074.  Be aware that they only have 400 grams of Thinsulate in the boots, so you might need to wear two pairs of hunting socks if it’s cold.  Regarding socks, either get a liner sock that wicks away sweat and cover it with a wool or similar sock or get one like the Ingenious that is a liner sock on the inner wall and wool/nylow/Olefin/Lycra Spandex sock on the outer wall.  (They’re more than 50% off right now at Cabelas.)
In terms of camo hunting clothes, besides a vest and hat, are you suggesting camo pants and camo shirt and/or camo sweatshirt as well? Do jeans and a normal shirt/sweatshirt not work?  Whatever you are wearing that the ducks can see needs to be camo or the game is over.  Here is what I typically wear – http://fcs-texas.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/121915_Coastal-duck-hunt_1.jpg.  Here are more pictures – http://fcs-texas.org/photo-gallery/hunts-duck/ (some of the guys are wearing jeans or shorts but those pictures were taken after the hunts).  I wear wading pants and/or sweats under my waders.  You can wear jeans, but you’ll need ankle gaiters to keep them from rolling up on you.
I don’t have a camo gun (I have a wood stock, black alloy frame).  Is that an issue, or is a specific camo-patterned shotgun required for duck hunting?  Camo is best, but I hunted with a wood stocked/matte barreled shotgun for years with no issues (although if you do it for long in salt water you’ll probably have to get it re-matted).  Fresh water is not nearly as hard on guns as salt water is.
Do I need a sling for my shotgun or a waterproof floating gun case? A sling is very helpful for carrying your gun on walk-in hunts, which are usually at least a mile one-way. You’ll be carrying a bucket/stool, gun, blind bag/vest, and decoys, so the more things that you can sling over your shoulder the better. You can get the hardware at McBride’s and they’ll install it for you. You can get the sling cheaper elsewhere. You won’t need a floating case, as we won’t be going on my boat. A sling with a neoprene or nylon outer shell, such as a Claw or a Yukon are designed to keep your gun from slipping off your shoulder.
How many ducks do hunters (e.g. beginner like me) usually get (and what is the limit)?  As we usually can’t tell who shot which duck we simply take the ducks harvested and divide them by the number of hunters.  So, if six hunters kill 24 ducks everyone will bring home four.  The limit is six ducks/hunter/day.  Specific species have specific limits.  For example redheads have a two duck per day limit per hunter.  The guide will keep track of which species have been killed and will let the group know how many of each species can still be shot.
Guided hunts
How much do guided duck hunts cost, typically and how long do they last (what hours/are they overnight trips)?  $125 for the guides that we have been using the last two seasons, not including tip (usually 15 – 20%).  They’re morning hunts.  We usually stay in a motel (double occupancy) the night before (about $50).
How much ammo does one need to bring?  No more than three boxes for ducks.
Is there someone in FCS you could point me to as a good hunting buddy, given that I’m a beginner?  Or is that not necessary for this hunt?  Yes, the hunt leader or I will team you up with someone.  For example if you hunt with Rayce Jenkins you’ll be hunting from a pit blind (a hole dug in the ground with a metal box put in it).  You’d be shoulder to shoulder with other hunters.  They’d tell you when to shoot.  With Ricky Ethridge we sit on buckets/stools and spread out a lot more.
Self-guided hunts

What is the duck hunt rotation?  I let the guys on the rotation know when I’m going to hunt next and ask who can go.  I then look at the list and the first three guys on the list who responded get to go (I can only fit three guys in my truck; plus you really don’t want a bigger party than that as the party will be too hard to hide).  For example, if five guys say that they can go on 11/18/17 I’ll then take the first three who are listed on the rotation.  After the hunt they go to the bottom of the rotation.

Do I need a sling for my shotgun or a waterproof floating gun case?  A sling is very helpful for carrying your gun on walk-in hunts, which are usually at least a mile one-way.  You’ll be carrying a bucket/stool, gun, blind bag/vest, and decoys, so the more things that you can sling over your shoulder the better.  You can get the hardware at McBride’s and they’ll install it for you.  You can get the sling cheaper elsewhere.  You won’t need a floating case, as we won’t be going on my boat.

For more information, see my Duck Hunt Rotation web page.  It has lots of information, including which shells to buys, which chokes to use, etc.
Categories : Duck Hunt ?'s, Events
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Oct
29

2017 – Shoots Reports

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Categories : Shoots Reports
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Oct
23

Bass Rotation

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The following is a rotation list for largemouth bass fishing on Lady Bird Lake and Lake Pflugerville.  I, Randy Rowley, can take up to two fishermen on my boat (three, counting me).  As my boat’s motor is out, we will use my trolling motor only for these trips.  I usually fish at least once a month during non-hunting months (February through August), but will not guarantee a set number of times.  We will fish with artificial lures.  I’m willing to fish part of the time with live or dead bait, but everyone in the boat will all fish with live or dead bait or none of us will (as the boat needs to be moving for artificial lures (most of the time) and it shouldn’t move when fishing with minnows (as movement will drown the minnows)).  If one guy is trying to fish with live or dead bait and another guy is trying to fish with lures then one or the other will be unhappy.

Bring your freshwater fishing license, rods, reels, lures, cap/hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, and snacks/drinks.  If you need to borrow an item(s) let me know (before we leave).  We usually stop at a Whataburger on the way to the lake.  We also might stop for lunch on the way home.

Trips will usually be six to eight hours, counting travel time, unless the fish are biting well, in which case we may decide to fish later, or if they’re not biting well or at all, in which case we may decide to quit earlier.  We’ll split the truck.  There is also often a per person park entrance fee (usually $5 each) or a boat launch fee that we will split (no more than $5 each).

Fishermen who want to participate must sign, if they have not already, a lifetime FCS Liability Waiver.

After a fisherman goes on a fishing trip I will move him or her to the bottom of the rotation.  If I contact a fisherman and he or she cannot go I will contact the next person on the list.

Being on this rotation is a privilege and is not a FCS membership benefit.  I can and will remove a person from the rotation for any of the following reasons (this list is not all inclusive):

  • Not fishing in a safe manner, including deliberately not following my instructions during a fishing trip.
  • Not paying your fair share of gas and park entrance fees/boat launch fees.
  • Not paying for items (that are not yours) that you broke or lost (including losing lures that you borrowed).
  • Not helping during a fishing trip (including not helping get the boat back on the trailer).
  • Indicating that he or she will attend a fishing trip and then not showing up.
  • A pattern of being more than a few minutes late.
  • A pattern of canceling at the last minute.
  • Not returning my phone calls and/or emails.
  • Not complying with the FCS Fishing Rules during a fishing trip.

The following people are on the Master Bass Fishing Rotation list:

  1. Bill Smith
  2. Flint and Harrison DeShazo
  3. Jeff Cates
  4. Dustin Rhodes
  5. Paul Irwin
  6. Ryan Rowley
  7. DaLee Trevino
  8. Jeff Peterson and son
  9. Burl Fulenwider
  10. Jim McGee
  11. Rex Yokum
  12. David Lesser and sons

Lure recommendations

Topwaters – walk the dog lures like Heddon’s Zara Spook, Zara Spook Jr., or Zara Puppy or Xcalibur’s Spittin’ Image; poppers like Heddon’s Chuggar Spook or Hula Popper, Storm’s Rattlin’ Chug Bug, or Rebel’s Pop-R; torpedo lures like Heddon’s Baby Torpedo; and Buzz baits like Booyah’s Buzz Clacker.  Colors – bass, shad, chartreuse, bone, and clear.  For lakes with a lot of grass (such as Bastrop, Decker, and Fayette) you can add frog colored topwaters or plastic frogs such as Lunkerhunt Lunkers, Strike King KVD Sexy Frogs, Scum Frogs (including the Scum Frog Popper) and toad style baits such as Stanley Ribbits.

Lipless crankbaits – Rapala Rattlin’ Rapala, Xcalibur Xr75 , Strike King Red Eye Shad, hard swimbaits, etc.  Colors – bass, shad, perch, red (best in spring), and chartreuse (best in the summer). Crankbaits – Norman Little N, Strom Wiggle Wart, Strike King KVD 2.5 or Pro-Model 3XD, Rapala Shad Rap, Bandit 200, and similar.

Deep divers include Norman’s DD-22, Strike King’s 5XD and 6XD, and Bomber’s Fat Free Shad.  Same colors as the lipless crankbaits.

Jerk baits (stick baits) – Bomber Long A, Rapala Husky Jerk, Rapala X-Rap, Smithwick Rattlin’ Rogue, and Storm Thunderstick.  Same colors as the crankbaits.

Spinnerbaits – white, yellow, chartreuse, combo white/yellow or white/chartreuse, watermelon (green), red (in the spring), and black/blue or black/red when it’s dark or there is a heavy overcast.  I prefer spinnerbaits with two blades over one.  The type is not that important but I tend to prefer the Colorado blade.

Soft plastics – Zoom finesse worms, flukes, crawdads, lizards, or baby brushhogs, Berkley power worms, crawdads, or lizards, Senko worms, Yum Dinger worms, Big Bite worms and grubs, Grandebass rattlesnakes, and Roadrunner’s with grub tails.  Colors depend on the time of year and such things as if it’s overcast of sunny.  The general rule is darker colors work best when it’s overcast and during the winter.  Lighter colors work best in the fall, spring, and summer and when it’s sunny.  Some of my favorite colors include Smokin’ Green, Watermelon, Watermelon Red, June Bug, Red Bug, Red Shad, Motor Oil, Pumpkinseed, Dark Blue, and Camo.  Zoom’s Baby Brushhog in pumpkinseed is a good choice for Travis in the fall.  Lizards and crawdads in pumpkinseed are good in the spring.  Frogs like Ribbits, Scum Frogs, and Strike King’s KVD Sexy Frog are good in early morning in grassy areas or lily pads.  Soft swimbaits are good in the grass.

Line Recommendations

It depends on the reels that you are using.  Generally for spin cast reels you don’t want to use anything heavier than 10 lb. mono.

For baitcast and spinning reels: Topwater rod/reel – mono 12 – 15 lb. test.  The exception is fishing with frogs, in which case 20 – 50 lb. braid is the best (to cut through weeds, lily pads, etc.; braid also floats).

Crankbait/spinnerbait/jerk bait (stick bait) rod/reel – flurocarbon (preferred) or mono 12 – 15 lb. test. Soft plastics rod/reel – braid, fluro, or mono.  Fluro or mono- 12 -15 lb. test.  Braid – 20 – 50 lb. test (braid does not have the same thickness as mono of fluro (20 lb. braid = 6 lb. mono).

Let me know at randywrowley@gmail.com (my preference) or at 512-922-2484 if you would like to be added to this rotation.  You do not have to be an FCS member to be added to this rotation.

Categories : Bass Rotation
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