I thoroughly enjoyed Lenny Rudows recent article on lightning protection for small boats (June, 2012).
I have spent a lifetime racing offshore sailboats in the Gulf and thought I would mention a method I always used in severe weather: Buy 15 feet of galvanized chain, tie one end to a metal tube around the console (or mast), and toss the other end overboard. Problem solved.
Many sailboats have copper grounding plates in or around the keel and I have often wondered why powerboats cannot do something similar. Lightning is scary stuff and is almost never mentioned in articles about safety at sea. And I must admit I had never heard about using the microwave as he described.
I look forward to his writing every month.
Garry Dossey, DDS
5 Reasons You Dont Catch Big Trout
I enjoyed reading the article, "5 Reasons You Dont Catch Big Trout" by Chester Moore (September, 2012). Great to point out and very, very true to the fact of fishing Texas.
I do feel that the trout fishing has not been any good for me in the past 10-12 years in the surf. I have fished the National Seashore Littleshell/Bigshell for more than 30 years. In that time, trout were always something to talk about on every trip.
I have fished in the middle of winter; Fourth of July; before, during and after a storm. Fishing days were low tide, high tide, red tide, and, at times, where you could swim out past the third gut in 40 feet of water like glass and find all kinds of fish.
Now the trout are numbered on the surf. I have always used finger mullet and other great bait that I cant find anymore. It is almost impossible to even think of any large trout now in the surf.
Thanks for the Flounder
I am a regular subscriber to TF&G and a 22-year Rockport fishing fanatic. This year on our annual summer trip in early August, we caught more, larger flounder than we have caught in the prior 21 years combined---without targeting them!
There is no question that your efforts (ram-rodded by Chester Moore) resulted in TPWD changes to the flounder fishing regulations. Thank you!
After this years trip, I am now convinced that a 5-fish trout limit is the right decision. We have not had a "great year" (catching large numbers of trout) in 5-plus years, even though most of the bay looks great. Because we only make the trip once per year, I previously wanted to keep the limit to 10, so that we could maximize our "take home" fish we enjoy so much. The flounder experience has made me realize it is time to change that view.
James S. Cornelius
Fie on the Feds
The draconian and opaque details of federal migratory bird hunting regulations, promulgated by the United States Fish & Wildlife Service, that Chester Moore writes about in TF&G, Sep. 2012, have been proof positive to me, for decades, that the USFWS is run by left wing, anti-hunting bureaucrats. There is no rational purpose for many of the regulations other than to harass sport hunters.
"Baiting" rules are the great Catch-22 of them all. It is illegal, no question about it, to hunt dove near a deer feeder, and that means almost all ranches in Texas are off limits for dove hunting. The federal game wardens do, to my personal knowledge, write tickets for hunting hundreds of yards from deer feeders and advise hunters to "tell it to the judge." The judge, of course, is a federal judge in a city far away. Figure on $5000-$20,000 in legal fees if you want to fight it.
It is worth repeating: Anti baiting regulations are invented by the USFWS bureaucrats; they are not "laws." All the law says is that baiting is illegal and that USFWS has the power to develop regulations to enforce the law.
I would add that I have never been cited for a game or fishing law violation. I have been questioned by Texas game wardens many times and all were polite and professional even when citing others in the area for bag limit and license violations.
On the three occasions that I have been questioned by federal game wardens they were, to a man, rude, arrogant, and combative. One fed near Anahuac (dove hunt) was so abusive and aggressive it was obvious he was trying to entice an assault.
El Lago, TX
Department of Family Defense
I enjoyed the August issue Dept. of Defense article on emergency preparedness by Steve LaMascus. I hope to see more articles on personal and family SHTF preparedness.