Sunday, December 10, 2017

What's happening this week 12/10

On Monday, the Cane Country Fly Casters will meet at Westside Baptist Community Center in Natchitoches, and in keeping with the holiday spirit, will hold their annual Christmas party.

Also on Monday, the Red Stick Fly Fishers will hold their annual Christmas gathering at the Wildlife and Fisheries building in Baton Rouge.

Also on Monday, the Kisatchie Fly Fishers will hold their annual Christmas gathering at Tunks Seafood Restaurant on Lake Kincaid in Gardner.

On Tuesday, the North Louisiana Fly Fishers will hold their monthly meeting at the Red River National Wildlife Refuge in Bossier City. Social hour starts at 6:00pm, club business at 6:45pm, meeting afterwards.

 On Thursday, Olde Town Fly Shop on 3675 Pontchartrain Drive in Slidell will hold their monthly tying session. Time is 6:30pm. Bring your tools, if none, the shop has a few sets for use during the session. Materials are provided. Beginners are welcome!

The Great Blizzard of December 8th - is more to come?

A few months back, we mentioned that the Old Farmers Almanac was predicting a colder than normal winter, with above-normal snowfall for the Deep South. While many may have dismissed the OFA forecast, several climatologists were predicting likewise.

Sure enough, Friday turned out to prove them right. Significant amounts of snow fell across Louisiana, as far south as Houma. Some parts of the Northshore area reported up to 8 inches of accumulation. It was the most "sneaux" we've seen in many years.

Now here's the interesting part... ALL of the forecasts predicted the most likely snowfalls to occur between mid-December to early February. So we're not even in the peak forecast period yet.

The most likely scenario for sneaux in our state is a combination of (1) the jet stream dipping deep into south Texas,  (2) Gulf moisture streaming from the southwest at the upper levels, and (3) a blast of arctic air.  All three were in place this past Friday. The first two factors look to remain in place for the next couple months. Which means that any blast of cold air could bring more white stuff for some part of our state.

Sunday, December 03, 2017

What's happening this week 12/3

On Tuesday, the Acadiana Fly Rodders hold their monthly meeting at Grace Presbyterian Hall on 415 Roselawn in Lafayette. Times is 6:30pm. Guests are welcome.

On Wednesday, the Pontchartrain Basin Fly Fishers hold their monthly meeting at Abita Brew Pub on 72011 Holly Street in Abita Springs. Gathering at 6:00pm, meeting at 6:30pm. Guests are welcome.

On Saturday, it's Fishing Tackle Unlimited of Houston's annual Inshore Expo at their Katy Freeway Store. TIme is 9:00am to 5:00pm. There's no cost. Seminars include Plugging for Big (Speckled) Trout, Fly Fishing the Texas Hill Country, and Fly Fishing in Cuba. There's also fly tying and casting. For more info, go to www.fishingtackleunlimited.com.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

What's happening this week 11/26

On Monday, the Kisatchie Fly Fishers hold their monthly meeting at the Rapides Westside Library in Alexandria. Time is 6:30pm. On the agenda: recap of their Marsh Invasion weekend, nominations for 2018 board, and discussion of the 2018 Calendar. The public is welcome. For more info, go to www.kisatchiefly.org.

Also on Monday, the Red Stick Fly Fishers hold their monthly fly tying session at Cabelas in Gonzales. Time is 7:00pm. Bring your tying tools, if none, the club has a few sets for use during these sessions. Materials are provided. Beginners are welcome! For more info, go to www.rsff.org.

On Tuesday, the Bass Pro Shops in Denham Springs will hold their monthly "Fourth Tuesday Tying Clinic" in the White River Fly Shop. Time is 6:00pm. Bring your tying tools, if none, they have a few sets for use during these sessions. Materials are provided. Beginners are welcome!

On Thursday, the New Orleans Fly Fishers hold their monthly meeting at Lakeshore Marina and Fuel (across the parking lot from the Blue Crab Restaurant). Time is 7:00pm. Guests are welcome. For more info, go to www.neworleansflyfishers.com.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving!

This day means many things to many different people. For most, it's a day of feasting with friends and family. The turkey, roast, venison, duck or other hearty meat that has been slowly cooked is delivered to the dining table accompanied by veggies, casseroles, and desserts (most notably, pumpkin pie). Here in Louisiana, there's a good chance that bird of choice is stuffed with crawfish or shrimp. Or that one of the "veggies" is sweet potatos or corn machcoux, and maybe even jambalaya. I'm getting hungry just typing this, lol! 

Here in the Cormier household, it's a day of thanks for all the blessings the Lord has bestowed upon us. For me personally, I'm thankful for all the many friends I've made through fly fishing and kayak fishing. I wish everyone a great day and lots of love!

December issue of Louisiana Sportsman is out

Sportsman readers will be excited to know that there are changes to the columns format that begins with this issue. New editor Pat Bonin is encouraging more photos in the magazine, and after talking to Pat, we agreed to add photos of one or two flies featured in the "Fishing Forecast" of the Fly Lines column. We think this will aid many readers who have no idea of what a particular fly looks like. For the December issue, the featured flies are the Perch Float Popper and LaFleur's Charlie.  Our column this month is on Christmas gift ideas beyond the usual tackle items.

In the now-expanded kayak fishing column (Paddles N Puddles), Chris Holmes discusses the planning for "Exotic Yak Trips". Chris also writes about targeting tidal lines this month. In his New Product Showcase, Chris writes about the new Jackson Coosa FD pedal drive kayak as well as new tackle from Penn and Stutterstep.  In his December's "Best Bets", he gives tips for Toledo Bend sacalait and Delacroix for reds and specks.

Other columns of interest: Jerald Horst discusses Cubera Snapper in "Creature Feature", Capt. Paul Titus tells why GPS trumps smartphones for use in the outdoors, Jerald and Glenda Horst share oyster recipes for the holidays in "Seafood Bible".  Articles of interest include "Cold Calcasieu Options" by Chris Berzas and "Beating the Bridges" on Lake Pontchartrain winter fishing by Jonathon Olivier.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

What's happening this week 11/19

With the Thanksgiving holiday, a very light week ahead.

On Monday, the Kisatchie Fly Fishers hold their monthly fly tying session at the Rapides Westside Library in Alexandria. Time is 6:30pm. Gene Taylor will lead in tying Steve Dally's Hippie Chick, a fantastic fly for a variety of species. Bring your tools, if none, the club has sets for use during the session. Materials are provided. Beginners are welcome! For more info, go to www.kisatchiefly.org.

On Tuesday, the Contraband Fly Casters hold their monthly meeting at St. Paul Lutheran Center on 1620 East Prien Lake Road in Lake Charles. Fly tying and discussion at 6:00pm, with meeting at 7:00pm. Guests are welcome. For more info, go to www.contrabandflycasters.net.

Also on Tuesday, the Lafayette Kayak Fishing club holds their monthly meeting at Pack and Paddle on 601 East Pinhook. Time is 6:00pm. On the agenda, discussion of Turkey Trout Throwdown tournament and recent fishing reports. Guests are welcome. For more info, go to www.lafayettekayakfishing.com.

Black Friday starts Monday

Today's newspapers are stuffed with circulars for early Christmas season sales. For decades, Christmas shoppers looked forward to the day after Thanksgiving - known as Black Friday - when retailers offered massive discounts on certain in-store items. A few times I was part of the mayhem, waiting overnight in long lines for the chance to buy a laptop or camera at half price. In recent years, the big discount "day" has spread over a week. A few of the specials are still reserved for Friday, but not nearly as many.

For fly anglers, price protection rules pretty much prohibit discounts. The best bet to find a great bargain on fly rods or reels is to look at house brands like Bass Pro and Cabelas. For example, Bass Pro has their Hobbs Creek Limited outfits on sale for $69. This includes a 9-foot rod - either 5 or 8 weight - with a fully-machined, anodized reel, spare spool, and travel case. While the number of rods, reels or outfits on sale might be extremely limited, there are a lot of fishing accessories marked down. These range from bags to fishfinders to filet knives to waders.

For kayak anglers, it's much the same as with fly anglers. Don't expect to see any kayaks on sale, but the list of accessories and tackle items is pretty much unlimited. Also, discounts on action cameras - including the GoPro - are being advertised.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

What's happening this week 11/12

On Monday, the Red Stick Fly Fishers hold their monthly meeting at the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries building on Quail Drive in Baton Rouge. Time is 7:00pm. Guests are welcome. For more info, go to www.rsff.org.

Also on Monday, the Cane Country Fly Casters hold their monthly meeting at the Westside Baptist Community Center in Natchitoches. Casting in the gym at 6:00pm, meeting at 6:30pm. This month, Cane River Pedal and Paddle will give a presentation on kayaking the Cane River, and will bring one of the new Hobie models. Guests are welcome!  For more info, go to www.canecountry.blogspot.com.

On Tuesday, the North Louisiana Fly Fishers hold their monthly meeting at the Red River National Wildlife Refuge on Sunflower Road in Bossier City. Time is 7:00pm. Guests are welcome.

On Thursday, the New Orleans Fly Fishers holds the 2nd of their twice-monthly fly tying sessions at St. Francis Xavier Church Hall on 444 Metairie Road. Time is 7:00pm. Bring your tools, if none, the club has a few sets for use during this session. Materials are provided, bring $1 to cover cost of materials. For more info, go to www.neworleansflyfishers.com.

Also on Thursday, the North Louisiana Fly Fishers holds their monthly tying workshop at the Bass Pro Shops in Bossier City. Time is 6:00pm. Bring your tools, if none, the club has a few sets for use during the session. Materials are provided. For more info, go to www.northlaflyfishers.org.

Starting Friday and continuing Saturday, it's the Kisatchie Fly Fishers "Marsh Invasion" fishing trip to Pointe-aux-Chenes for reds, specks, and other inshore species. For more info, go to www.kisatchiefly.org.

On Saturday, it's the Lafayette Kayak Fishing Club's annual "Turkey Trout Throwdown" tournament out of Cypremont Point State Park. Entry fee is $25, open to the public. Heaviest stringer of 5 speckled trout wins. Artificial tackle only. For more info, go to www.lafayettekayakfishing.com.

Monday, November 06, 2017

What''s happening this week 11/5

On Tuesday, the Acadiana Fly Rodders will hold their monthly meeting at Grace Presbyterian Hall on 415 Roselawn in Lafayette. Time is 6:30pm.  Guests are welcome.

On Thursday, the New Orleans Fly Fishers will hold the first of their twice-monthly fly tying sessions at St. Francis Xavier Hall on 444 Metairie. Time is 7:00pm. Bring $1 to cover cost of materials.  Bring your tools, if none, the club has a few sets for use during the session. Beginners are welcome!

Also on Thursday, Old Town Fly Shop will hold their monthly tying session at their location on 3675 Pontchartrain Drive in Slidell. Time is 6:30pm. Beginners are welcome!

Friday is Veterans Day observed, and holiday for some.  Be sure to thank a veteran for their service!

Starting Friday afternoon with the Captains meeting and with the tournament on Saturday, it's the 12th annual "Fall n Tide" kayak fishing tournament hosted by the Bayou Coast Kayak Fishing Club.  Fishing is along the Highway 23 corridor. Its open to the public. Entry fee is $60 and includes tournament entry, Friday night dinner, Captains bag, Saturday fish fry,  and chance at nearly 150 raffle items. There's divisions for Slam, Womens Slam, Youth, Seniors, Leopard Red, and largest red, speck, and flounder. For more info, go to www.bckfc.org.

Also starting Friday and continuing thru the weekend, it's the Red Stick Fly Fishers annual "Fall Catch n Eat" marsh fishing trip along the Highway 1 corridor.  For more details, go to www.rsff.org.

On Sunday, Masseys of Baton Rouge will hold a "Kayak Demo Day" at BREC Wampold Park off Stanford near the LSU Campus.  Time is 10:00am to 2:00pm.  No cost.  Models include Hobie, Perception, Wilderness, Jackson, Native and more. Subject to weather, check their Facebook page to confirm.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

What's happening this week 10/29

Tuesday is Halloween.

Wednesday the Pontchartrain Basin Fly Fishers hold their monthly meeting at Abita Brew Pub on 72011 Holly Street in Abita Springs. Time is 6:30pm, attendees are encouraged to order dinner (optional) prior to the meeting and join in conversation. Guests are welcome. For more info, go to www.pbasinflyfishers.blogspot.com.

Starting Thursday evening and continuing Saturday, it's the Kayak Bass Fishing Open Series at Toledo Bend. Activities will take place out of Cypress Bend Park and Marina near Many. Registration for this CPR kayak bass fishing tournament is $100. Details can be found at www.kayakbassfishing.com.

Starting Friday, and continuing to Sunday morning, it's the annual "Toledo Bend Rendezvous" at North Toledo Bend State Park near Zwolle. More on this later.

On Saturday, Pack and Paddle in Lafayette will hold their annual Fall Kayak Demo at Vermillionville Pond on 300 Fisher Road in Lafayette (near the airport). Time is 10:00am to 2:00pm. Models include Hobie, Wilderness, Native, Jackson, Hurricane and others. Also, new 2018 boats like the Hobie Compass and the Jackson Coosa FD. For more info, go to www.packpaddle.com.

Also on Saturday, Masseys Outfitters in New Orleans will hold a "Kayak Demo Day" on Bayou St. John near Cabrini Bridge. Time is 10:00am to 2:00pm. Models will include Hobie, Wilderness, Native, Jackson, Feel Free and others. Including 2018 Hobie Compass and Jackson Coosa FD. For more info, go to www.masseysoutfitters.com.

Also on Saturday, the New Orleans Fly Fishers will hold their annual banquet that evening at Porter and Lukes Restaurant on Metairie Road. Time is 6:30pm, with dinner at 7:00pm. Complete details are posted in the Events Forum. Also, check their website at www.neworleansflyfishers.com.

On Sunday, it's the 2nd annual Mission Six Redfish Shootout kayak fishing tournament at PAC Kayak Rentals in Pointe-aux-Chenes. Fishing time is 5:30am to 3:00pm. Entry fee is $40, open to the public. Pedal or paddle power only, heaviest 3 slot redfish wins. Monies raised go to the Mission Six non-profit. For complete rules and details, go to www.mission6.org.

29th annual Toledo Bend Rendezvous this weekend

What is Rendezvous?  It's the largest annual gathering of fly tiers in our state, with no planned activities but plenty of fly tying, food, and fishing. Held annually at North Toledo Bend State Park near Zwolle, the event is co-sponsored by the Gulf Coast and Texas Councils of Fly Fishers International, and is open to the public. It kicks off Friday afternoon and ends after breakfast on Sunday morning. Many of the top tiers from the Ark-La-Tex region and beyond will be on hand tying at the numerous tables inside the large dining room.

Five bunkhouses are reserved for overnight stay on Friday, Saturday or both nights. The 2-night fee is $50 family, $40 single, and 1-night fee is $25 family, $20 single. Those coming just for the day Saturday are asked to make a donation to help offset the rental fees. For more details on this event, check Bowfin47's post on the General Discussion forum.  Or go to this link at Walter McLendon's website.