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Sanctuary Identified as Manta Nursery

June 21st, 2018

unnamed Sanctuary Identified as Manta Nursery

Where do young manta rays spend their time? Finally, researchers have an answer: Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary.

In a paper published in Marine Biology, Dr. Nancy  Foster Scholar Joshua Stewart and sanctuary researchers Marissa Nuttall, Emma Hickerson, and Dr. Michelle Johnston suggest that Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary and the area surrounding it may represent the first documented nursery habitat for oceanic manta rays (Manta birostris) and a potential new species of manta (Manta cf. birostris).

In light of the fact that oceanic manta rays were recently listed as threatened under the Endanger Species Act, this is quite significant. The protections provided within the sanctuary keep juvenile mantas relatively safe from threats affecting them in other parts of the world.

We always knew this place was special. This new finding just makes it more so!

Seabrook fish kill reported

June 6th, 2018

seabrook fish kill 2 Seabrook fish kill reported

Thousands of dead shad begin to accumulate at the rocks near the base of the Todville Road bridge in Seabrook, TX on the afternoon of June 6, 2018. Photo by Brandon Rowan.

By Brandon Rowan

June 6, 2018 – A new fish kill has been reported in Galveston Bay near Seabrook. Thousands of dead shad are washing ashore near Todville Road and the surrounding area.

This is the second Galveston Bay fish kill reported in two weeks. The Seabrook event comes only a week after a massive fish kill further north in the Bay near the Houston Yacht Club.

Hotter-than-average temperatures in late May and early June are most likely responsible. Hot weather depletes oxygen supplies from the water and suffocates these small fish.

Due to health concerns, Texas Parks and Wildlife discourages fishing in areas where fish carcasses have accumulated.

You may report other fish kills to Texas Parks and Wildlife by calling their 24-hour hotline at (281) 842-8100.

The 37th Annual South Padre Island Chamber of Commerce Ladies Kingfish Tournament

May 11th, 2018

 

2015 1024x683 The 37th Annual South Padre Island Chamber of Commerce Ladies Kingfish Tournament

LKT NewLogo w400 The 37th Annual South Padre Island Chamber of Commerce Ladies Kingfish Tournament

The 37th Annual South Padre Island Chamber of Commerce Ladies Kingfish Tournament will be held on August 10-12, 2018.

The tournament is divided into two divisions, Bay and Offshore. Anglers fishing in the Bay Division will vie for trophies in the categories of Redfish, Trout and Flounder, while anglers in the Offshore Division complete in the categories of King, Bonito, Blackfin Tuna and Dolphin.  Trophies will be awarded to the first four places in each category and Grand Champion Bay and Grand Champion Offshore winners will also receive trophies.  Trophies will be original unique artwork from famed artist Dinah Bowman.  NOTE: To qualify for Grand Champion an angler must bring in one of each fish listed in the category they are fishing in. In the event all qualifying fish are not brought in the division, the next highest number brought in will qualify.

The tournament kicks off Friday, August 10 with check-in and on-site registration from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the SPI Convention Centre.  On Saturday, fishing begins at 6:30 a.m. Sea Ranch Marina II at SouthPoint is where all the action will be with Bay division weigh-in from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Offshore weigh-in from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.  Sea Ranch Marina II at SouthPoint provides a large viewing and parking area for family and friends, and anyone else that would like to see who brings in the biggest fish. The Sunday Awards Luncheon will be held at SPI Convention Centre beginning at 11:00 a.m. All participants are invited to attend.

Early registration fees are $95.00 per angler. The registration fee includes an event bag and lunch at the Sunday awards ceremony.  The early registration fee for Captains/Boat Operators, Deckhands and Guests is $25.00 and includes lunch at the awards ceremony on Sunday.  Registration fees increase to $100.00 for anglers and $30.00 for Captains/Boat Operators, Deckhands and Guests after July 13.  All anglers and their Captain/Boat Operators, Deckhands and Guests must be paid registrants of the tournament and have completed release forms on file with the SPI Chamber of Commerce.  Tickets may also be purchased at the door for Sunday Lunch for $25.00 per person.  Food will be available only with a ticket.

Join us for the 37th Anniversary Ladies Kingfish Tournament and start your own Island tradition.

If you would like additional information about the tournament please contact the South Padre Island Chamber of Commerce at 956.761.4412 or info@spichamber.com

Texas Boaters Education Class

May 2nd, 2018

15894631 683956928452037 8901466855224964972 n 300x300 Texas Boaters Education ClassSea Star Base Galveston, in partnership with Texas Parks and Wildlife, will offer Texas Boaters Education classes on Saturday, May 12, 8 am – 5pm, 7509 Broadway, 5 th floor, for ages 13 years and older. Must be registered to attend.

The Texas Boaters Education class is required by Texas education law for all those born after August 31, 1993, who wishes to operate personal watercraft, including sailing vessels, of more than 14 feet, and any motor vessel with more than 15 horsepower. Approved by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, the course includes a final exam after which certifications are awarded to passing students. In partnership with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, the hands on class will focus on nautical terminology, safety equipment, rules of the road, legal and moral responsibilities and other important marine topics. Class instructor is Captain Margaret Candler, who is certified by Texas Parks and Wildlife.

The Texas Boaters Education class will cover nautical terminology, safety equipment, rules of the road, legal and moral responsibilities and more. In addition, students will board the 111 foot training vessel, BaySmart Express, where crew will combine traditional classroom instruction with modern technology and hands-on activities during a three hour cruise through Galveston Bay.

Students should dress comfortably and bring a sack lunch. A fun and unique on the water class, space is limited and registration is required. Participants will be eligible to receive their Texas Boaters Education certificate upon successfully completing the class.

Sea Star Base Galveston is a high adventure marine and maritime destination offering aquatic aducation programs that instill lifetime leadership, teamwork skills, and independence in body, mind and spirit.

Texas Boaters Education Class is $20 per person and students may register online at www.ssbgalveston.org. For information contact Captain Margaret Candler at (409) 572-2560 x 1006 or mcandler@ssbgalveston.org.

Art by Bill Edwards and Beafish Designs

May 1st, 2018

Redfish on boat 1024x680 Art by Bill Edwards and Beafish Designs

Interview with Jan Edwards

Tell us about yourself and Bill’s passion for photography, fishing and nature.

Bill and I met in 1981 when I interviewed for a position in General Electric’s renowned inhouse advertising agency. They told me there was an opening in the Louisville office and that I would be meeting with the creative director, Bill Edwards. (It should have been a red flag to me about his punctuality that I waited THREE HOURS for him at the airport, but that’s another story!) What struck me during my visit to their office were his hands: they were thick and masculine but moved in an artistic way I’d never seen before. I just remember noticing the pen in his hand as he sketched something out and wondered if I was completely in over my head in the creativity department. Cotton tees 300x214 Art by Bill Edwards and Beafish Designs

After we married in 1986, he became the creative director for McCann Erickson’s office in Dallas. While his business strengths were in branding and corporate identity, his personal creative expression increasingly developed through his photography. He had a long contract with Getty Images, shooting anything that might lend itself to use in advertising — and since he took off for the coast for offshore fishing every chance he could, the ocean became his subject more often than not.

How did Bill get the idea to convert his photography into his beautiful PhotoArt?

We moved to Houston in 2001 and Bill began to spend more time down in Galveston and Port Aransas. He was frustrated with corporate America having gone through a cycle of layoffs and was looking for a way to combine his passions. He was experimenting with his camera and Photoshop, and seemingly “stumbled” onto something extraordinary. The first one he completed was a tuna – he spun his computer around and said to me, “Well, what do you think about this?” We both knew he’d “hooked into a big one.”

He created a few pieces and placed them in galleries along the Gulf Coast. After Hurricane Ike demolished the Strand, he joked that he was famous because he had art “all up and down the coast.”

But he persevered, and the then owner of Galveston Outfitters suggested Bill start putting his art on apparel. He began with his signature “Double Dot Redfish” and it took off. The colors are so vibrant and complicated, it’s actually very difficult for silkscreeners to get it right, but Bill was always on press guaranteeing that they did.

Also, the logo itself is one of his best. The B-E- A stands for Bill Edwards Art, but it became his battle cry and mantra after he was diagnosed with stage four metastatic cancer in 2009. His courage and attitude were inspirational, and led him to pen the statement for what Beafish means: “It’s about the wide open sea and the great outdoors – and the ability to use our God-given talents to make a difference in the lives of others. So when life sends you downstream, swim upstream and make a splash!”

He fought so hard, but in his passing, we believe his story and art are even more inspirational and important.

Shortly after he died, Gulf Coast Conservation Association contacted me about putting his crab art on a serving tray for their auctions. I’d never even seen it before, but then I found an external hard drive with lots of art I’d never seen. Our daughters and I decided we’d do what we could to make sure his art can live on.

Last year we expanded into dri-fits, and the response has been fantastic. It seems to be where the market is going, and customers value the fabric quality and SPF factor.

What can we expect to see in the future from Beafish Designs?

More apparel, for sure – different colors and new designs. But we’d also like to use the art on home décor and beach accessories.

Where can people purchase Beafish Deisgns apparel and prints?

In Houston, they are currently exclusively in Berings, but we’re actively looking for more retailers in the Bay Area, particularly in Kemah or Galveston. Our apparel is also carried in Rockport‘s Tackletown and Port Aransas’ Fish Tales, although the latter has not yet re-opened after Harvey. We also plan on participating in the Galveston Shrimp Festival again. Limited pieces of art and apparel are available online at www.beafishdesigns.com.

Columbia Fishing Gear

April 30th, 2018

Outfit your next fishing adventure with state-of-the-art gear from Columbia.

mega vent2 Columbia Fishing Gear

Megavent™ II PFG Shoe

It dries quickly, drains water easily, and laces up fast. The latest Megavent™ hybrid shoe is made for the professional angler who needs an outsole that grips when wet, an upper that resists stains, and an overall design that performs when the excitement hits.

columbia pant Columbia Fishing Gear

PFG Blood and Guts III Convertible Pant

With a quick zipper pull, these pants convert into an 8.5″ inseam short that lets you adapt to changing conditions. They’re crafted from a lightweight yet durable nylon ripstop fabric that repels angling stains, resists harsh UV rays, and dries fast so you won’t get soggy.

Flycaster LS Hoodie

New from Columbia, this long sleeve shirt with Omni-Wick and Omni-Shade UPF 30 technology has a built-in hood that will keep you cool and protected.

PFG Mesh Snap Back Ball Cap

Built with a cool-wearing mesh back and moxie fish flag graphic, this hard-working PFG ball cap keeps the sun off your face as you reel ’em in—or run errands around town. A classic adjustable snap-back closure lets you dial in the perfect fit.

2018 Texas Outlaw Challenge

April 30th, 2018

outlaw challenge 2018 Texas Outlaw Challenge

Countdown to the “Biggest Performance Boating Event in Texas” has begun!

One of the most respected and popular speedboating events in North America, the Texas Outlaw Challenge will kick off its 11th Annual event June 20- 24. The 2018 event is again upping the ante with more excitement and public events. The event of the season features million-dollar performance powerboats and offers the opportunity not only to see, but to hear the roar of thunderous horsepower, and feel the chills and adrenaline pumping through your veins as you experience performance power boating at its best.

IOGP 2018 Texas Outlaw ChallengeThis significant Texas performance boating event has the support of seven local Texas cities and city councils, including Seabrook, Nassau Bay, Kemah, El Lago, Pasadena, Clear Lake Shores, League City and Galveston, and is a U.S. Coast Guard Permit approved event.

The Texas Outlaw Challenge supports the local community and businesses with a substantial economic impact that is estimated well over $1 million each year. A more significant impact to the economy is anticipated in 2018 with the added attractions of Formula One racing and expanded public events – a fantastic boost to the local economy.

The Texas Outlaw Challenge responsibly supports several local charities, donating over $100,000 since 2008 including $50,000 donated to Harvey Relief through generous event participant and sponsor donations. These proceeds help the following local charities: Shriners Children’s Hospital, The Bridge Women’s Shelter, Boys & Girls Harbor, Clear Creek Environmental Foundation, Kemah Lions Club, Seabrook Rotary, Seabrook Marine Group, Galveston-Houston Families Exploring Down Syndrome, and various Veterans groups.

The five-day high performance packed event features over 250 performance boat teams totaling over 500,000 Horsepower that will be powering into the area from coast to coast including international participation from Canada,Europe, and Dubai, to name just a few.

Huski Chocolate Superboat debut.

There will be two BIG additions to the Texas Outlaw Challenge this year.

First, the selection of our Clear Lake community to host the season opening event of the International Outboard Gran Prix Formula One boat racing circuit. Second, the unveiling of a new Superboat Unlimited race team from our hometown. Superboat Unlimited features the largest and fastest boats on the international circuit.

The team unveiling will be featured on the evening of Thursday, June 21 at the Stampede Street Party that is open to the public in the Kemah lighthouse district.

Except for race participants, the entire lake will be declared a no-wake zone during scheduled 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. race activity on Friday and Sunday. We’re expecting a massive increase in water spectating and on-shore viewing.  Spectacular viewing locations will be available by ticket purchase.

Saturday will feature the Gunslinger Power Run and Boat Parade.

In between it all, check out the High Horsepower Car Show featuring exotic cars, vintage muscle, extreme race cars and participation in the Steel Horse Stampede Charity Bike Rally, both held on Saturday.   

Sunday, the highly anticipated Formula 1 Finals in Clear Lake will be on display with great spectator ticket viewing areas at Water’s Edge, Villa Capri and Endeavour Marina. Pre-purchase tickets online at www.TexasOutlawChallenge.com.

Don’t miss this fantastic 5-day Texas Outlaw Challenge horsepower weekend!

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Wednesday, June 20

Welcome Outlaws – You’re in Texas NOW! – Sam’s Boat.

Thursday, June 21

6 pm – 11 pm: Stampede Street Party & Offshore Performance Display in Kemah. The highly anticipated, unveiling of the New Super Unlimited local racing team. Million Dollar Boat displays featuring cars, trucks, and boats. Walk the streets of Kemah, enjoy great Rock the Dock Entertainment at the Boardwalk.

Friday, June 22

9 am – 1 pm: Formula One – Pre-Qualifying Races and Radar Run Shootout. ESPN 2 will be featuring coverage of the Formula One Races on Friday and Sunday.

9 pm: Kemah’s Fireworks Display. Continue the evening with live bands, bars, saloons and local shops.

10 pm Miss Outlaw Bikini Contest at Cabo

Saturday, June 23

Gunslinger Poker Run

Register your performance boat and join the Outlaws on the water.

Sunday, June 24

IOGP Formula 1 FINALS

Tickets for spectator events/viewing will be available online. Pricing from $10 and up depending on the venue.

For more information, updates, registration and to buy spectator tickets online visit us at texasoutlawchallenge.com

Kayak fishing with Marine Corps Veteran and Hurricane Harvey Hero Donald Justin

April 30th, 2018

Interview by Brandon Rowan

donald justin 300x298 Kayak fishing with Marine Corps Veteran and Hurricane Harvey Hero Donald Justin

Donald Justin fishing in Iraq.

Where are you from?

I was born in Hagåtña, Guam but I grew up all over America. My dad was in the military my whole life and then I joined the military myself. I settled down here in the Galveston Bay area after I retired.

What branch of the U.S. military did you serve in?

I was in the Marine Corps. I finished service there and then joined the Army and was assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division. I was trained as a combat diver and paratrooper. I jumped out of planes and all that fun stuff. I was a machine gunner in Iraq, too – not much use for a diver in the sand. I deployed to Iraq five times between 2005 and 2011.

What do you do now that you’re out of the service?

I kayak fish a minimum four to five times a week. Sometimes I can go two to three months without missing a day of fishing.

I like to fish. It’s relaxing when I go out there. Sometimes if I spot a school of redfish I won’t even cast to them, I’ll see how long I can follow them.

But I don’t eat fish. I ate fish every day growing up, a couple times a day. I’ve fished my whole life, starting in Guam. I’ve fished all over the United States and even in Iraq.

What’s there to catch in Guam?

Mostly pelagics but also different kinds of snapper. Guam is smaller than the city of Houston and surrounded by very deep water. You can fish in 1,200 feet of water from a pier and catch tuna. The Mariana Trench is just off the shore of Guam.

What’s your favorite place you’ve ever fished?

Florida Keys. I go there twice a year. I take my wife and kids and they do “wife and kids stuff” and I go fish. My favorite place in Texas is the Port Aransas area. It’s pretty good for kayak fishing because you get other stuff besides just redfish and trout without going six or seven miles offshore like in Galveston. I just picked up a Hobie Tandem Island just to go past the breakers. I’m on a mission for kingfish this year.

Do you have a favorite fishing moment?

The first time I got my son on a fish. He had just turned 4 years old and it was just a little 15” rat red, but he brought it in on his own. He casted and reeled it in all by himself on a spiderman pole and chickenboy lure.

heroes on water Kayak fishing with Marine Corps Veteran and Hurricane Harvey Hero Donald Justin

Heroes on the Water provides no-expense kayak fishing trips for veterans.

Tell me about your involvement with the community and veterans.

For the past few years I’ve been a member of Heroes on the Water – Southeast Texas Chapter, which organizes kayak fishing trips for active-duty military and U.S. veterans. They bring the kayaks and all of the fishing equipment; they supply everything. The only thing veterans need to bring is a fishing license. They started in Texas but there are chapters all over the states.

Veterans can relax out on the water for a little peace. They don’t necessarily have to fish; some just paddle around to take a break and clear their minds. Heroes on the Water concentrates on disabled veterans, but all veterans and service members are welcome.

I fell into it because it gives you a chance to be normal and meet people who have gone through the same things you have. I go out for every event I can. They need experienced people and sometimes we lack enough volunteers.

How can a veteran or volunteer get involved with Heroes on the Water?

They can visit heroesonthewater.org for information on the closest chapter, and most chapters have a Facebook page.

I understand you put your kayak collection to work during Hurricane Harvey.

Yeah, me and two neighbors on kayaks, and a handful of neighbors on big lifted trucks, got a couple dozen people out of their homes. The water was so high in some neighborhoods that we did rescues out of second story windows

Right on. In what areas did you perform rescues?

Friendswood and Dickinson. Boats were awesome for rescue but there were dry patches in some neighborhoods. So boats would tow us as far as they could go, and we would go get people and bring them back to the boats. We even rescued nine border collies that are featured in Alpo ads and commercials.

Border Collies being rescued by Donald Justin after Hurricane Harvey.

My family was affected and actually my own border collie, Murphy, rode in my kayak that day. It was a real bad time but great to see so many good people come together. Were you affected by the storm?

I live in Webster and my whole neighborhood lucked out. Everyone came together though; cooking for people, collecting donations and opening their doors. I had three people that we didn’t know live in our house for four months. Their son has special needs and there wasn’t a place for them.

Well, aside from helping others and fishing, what else are you passionate about?

Old BMWs. I have 22 various BMWs. I’m driving a 1990 BMW today that’s probably nicer inside than most 2018 models; no stains, rips, tears…everything is flawless.

Wow, is that your favorite BMW?

No, that’s the only one I’m willing to put miles on. My favorite is my 1991 E30 318is; it was only available for one year here in the States. It’s a slick top, turboed and has everything done to it. I’m giving it to my son one day. (without the turbo).

Is it time to lower the limit on speckled trout?

April 30th, 2018

blumentrout Is it time to lower the limit on speckled trout?

Speckled trout. Photo by Garrett Blumenshine.

By Capt. Joe Kent

Almost every time the subject of lowering the number of fish anglers can retain crops up, a controversy arises that seems to draw a line in the sand.

Part of the problem is that there remain a large number of anglers who grew up fishing under no size or bag limits for saltwater fish.  Fifty years ago anyone would have been laughed at if they suggested placing a limit on the number of fish an individual could keep, let alone place any size restrictions on the catches.

After all, there was an endless supply of finfish and shellfish swimming the coastal waters and there was no way fishermen could even dent the populations.

Unfortunately, it did not take long to prove otherwise, as freeze events and overfishing by both commercial and recreational anglers began taking their toll on our stocks of trout, redfish and flounder.

Toward the end of the 1970s, when the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) was compelled to take action, the bag and size limits imposed were met with resistance by many in the fishing community.

That mentality continues to exist and was noticeable as recently as seven years ago when the TPWD held public hearings soliciting comments and opinions from anyone affected by any change in the bag limits for trout.

One meeting that was held at the TPWD Dickinson Lab almost got out of hand, as guides, marina operators and others were quite vocal in their opposition to any reduction in the number of trout allowed.

While the TPWD passed on the concerns expressed for the upper Texas Coast, they did recommend and had approved by the commissioners a reduction from 10 to five trout for anglers fishing the lower and middle coasts.

As an outdoor writer and columnist, I have been noticing an increasing number of sportsmen, including fishing guides and others with commercial interests in fishing, supporting a change in the rules.

Many of those same individuals were among the loud protesters at the hearings mentioned earlier.

I asked several of those I personally know what brought about their change of attitude?  Universally, they said that it was concern over the long-term survival of our stocks of trout.

One well-known fishing guide pointed out that the problem was of an environmental nature and that while recreational fishermen had a minimal impact, the solution required sacrifices on all ends.  There is not much individuals can do about devastating floods or severe droughts; however, they can do their part as stewards of our wildlife resources.

Each year there are increasing numbers of anglers fishing the Galveston Bay Complex and we are at the point that our resources of trout and other fish just cannot handle all of the added pressure.

At this point trout appear to be the only finfish about which there are concerns.  Reds have a three-fish slot limit and seem to be thriving well around the Galveston Bay Complex.

Several years ago the bag limit for flounder during the majority of the year was reduced from 10 to five and all indications are that the stocks are rebounding well following that change.

While anglers have a voice in the matter, the answers are going to have to come from the TPWD.  If the parties are in agreement, the process should be fairly easy to get initiated. The legislative procedures will begin to get the regulatory changes into law.

Thoughts on the call for a trout limit reduction

April 30th, 2018

By Capt. David C. Dillman

galvestonbaycharterfishing.com | 832-228-8012

dillman fishing Thoughts on the call for a trout limit reduction

Mickey and Pat Carr

Galveston Bay is the seventh largest estuary in the United States. The surface area of the bay is 600 square miles with a average depth of ten feet. The bay complex has survived floods, freezes and pollution and still continues to thrive. Changes to the bay have occurred ever since “Moby Dick was a minnow.”

In the past few years, the bay system has seen its share of droughts and floods. Ever resilient, the bay system rebounds and so does the fishery. No matter what “Mother Nature” throws at it, the bay system rebounds. This resiliency is what makes Galveston Bay such a great fishery.

There has been a recent increase in calls for a reduction in the bag limit for speckled trout. The influx of freshwater into our bay system over the past two years has made trout easy targets for some. A situation known as a “stack up” of these fish occurred in the bay and many trout were taken by anglers in the know, many of them being charter boats. Fearing another “stack up” situation this year from the recent rains and runoff this April, some anglers and charter boat captains are calling for a reduced limit of trout. The current limit is ten fish per angler and on charter boats the captains limit is excluded. A five fish limit is what this group is seeking.

dillman fishing2 Thoughts on the call for a trout limit reduction

Dick Daugird with grandkids Wade and Walker Winters.

A article that was in the Houston Chronicle dated April 4, 2018 deemed our fishery “fine and dandy” according to Glen Sutton of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. So why are some anglers and charter boat captains “beating their drum” for a reduced limit? Some of this group believes the trout population has suffered over the past couple years due to them being stacked up in one area for a few weeks. I do believe they became easy prey for some anglers, most of them on chartered boats. The question becomes, what type of conservation should be in place to protect our trout fishery?

Fact is, the average angler seldom, if ever, catches a ten fish limit of trout. They just want to go out and enjoy their fishing experience with the hope of catching a ten fish limit one day. Anglers on charter boats go out with the expectation of catching their trout limit. The captain, as the law is written, can contribute to the boat limit of speckled trout. I think we all can agree there is an abundance of charter boats on Galveston Bay. These same charter boats take a majority of trout from the bay system. So maybe we need to find a way to reduce the catches of trout on chartered boats. I know good and well that a captain fishing along with their customer catches and retains an unequal amount of trout most of the time. This ensures the captain of a quick day and full limits for the boat.

What I would propose, is that a captain CANNOT retain any fish on a chartered trip. They can fish, but with no retention or “boxing” of fish. After all, I feel the customers should be the ones catching their own fish to take home, not the boat captain.

I feel no one user group should dictate what the fish limits should be unless it is agreed upon by the majority of fishing license holders or TPWD officials and biologists.   

The Galley: Savory nuts, wine and brie

April 30th, 2018

Sometimes you want to entertain light. You’ve had a big mid-day meal and the party continues. That’s when you plan a fun wine tasting and include nuts, cheese and apples for substance.

Plain nuts are fabulous on their own, but savory nuts add a bit of spice, salt and aromatic zest. They also show a little TLC for your guests. The following recipes pair well with Brie. The creamy butteriness balances the spice. Wines that pair well will be more sweet, without tannins. Examples are Riesling, pinot noir, rosé, or bubbles! A jar of rosemary-herbed Spanish Marcona almonds are an easy third nut option.

baked brie The Galley: Savory nuts, wine and brie

Baked Brie

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place 1/4 wheel brie on a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper. Optionally, you may drizzle with  honey. Bake 5 to 7 minutes, or until cheese starts to ooze but not melt.

spicy pecan recipe The Galley: Savory nuts, wine and brie

Hot & Spicy Pecans

  • 2 Tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 cups pecan halves
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder
  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

In a medium bowl, mix butter (melted), Worcestershire sauce, red pepper, salt and garlic powder. Stir in pecans and gently toss with chili powder until coated. Spread pecans on a baking sheet and cook 30 minutes in oven. Stir every 10 minutes.

Curried Cashews

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 1/4 cups roasted cashews, salted
  • 2 Tablespoons curry powder
  • salt to taste

Melt butter in a sauté pan. Add nuts. Cook slowly over medium heat until cashews are browned. Move to a plate covered with a paper towel to dry. Sprinkle with the curry powder.

Something for every boater

April 30th, 2018

quantum loft Something for every boater

The Quantum Sails Seabrook team discusses the designs for a custom sewing project. From left: Rese McLaughlin, Farley Fontenot, James Berry, Alan Woodyard. Photo by Brandon Rowan.

It’s no secret that the team at the Quantum Sails Seabrook loft share your passion for all things sailing and boating. We take pride in working as a team and in the services we offer; going far beyond new sails.

Many people don’t think about swinging by their local loft unless they need new sails or [gulp] they need something repaired. However, there are a vast number of services beyond setting you up with a handsome new set of sails or your annual service that you may not be taking advantage of to help you get where you want to go, even if you prefer powerboats.

Quantum’s high standards don’t stop at our sails, it extends to every person that puts the green Q on their business card. Our team members are truly experts in their fields and work together every day to help you with any need, big or small. Here are some of the ways you can use your local experts to meet your next challenge.

woodyard sail Something for every boater

Quantum Sails Seabrook Loft Service Manager Alan Woodyard fabricates a canvas boat cover for a local power boat.

CANVAS AND CUSTOM SEWING PROJECTS

Quantum designs custom canvas for sailboats and powerboats and even for on-land projects for companies such as NASA. We come to your boat, meet with you and see what your needs are via private interview. The pattern and frames are then custom created to your boat. We finish the job with a personalized installation and work to make sure everything is finalized to your exact standards.

Our canvas is sewn with SolarFix PTFE Thread which is guaranteed for the life of the fabric. We create every kind of canvas need for boats such as biminis, enclosures, hatch covers, dodgers, sail covers, and Roller furling covers. We also make sun shades for parks, ceilings for museums, and ceiling shapes for our local library and churches.

A specialist in advanced fabrication techniques from the Hood Marine Canvas School, Alan Woodyard will make sure your new canvas is the perfect solution for your boat.

CHOOSING THE RIGHT SAIL FOR THE CONDITIONS

Reachers, runners, Code 0s, jib tops, genoas, windseekers, and staysails—that’s just a tiny sample of the type of sails that can make up your inventory. How do you know which one to use and in what conditions? And does the sea state matter? Ask us to come out for a sail and help you build a crossover chart to get the most out of your sail inventory so you have a better chance of winning that top regatta or a successful weekend sail with the family. Don’t forget, if sails are sun rotted, or too stretched they won’t do you much good, we can also help make sure everything is in tip-top shape for when you need it.

Quantum Sailmaker James Berry puts the final touches on a sail repair project.

PROLONGING THE LIFE OF YOUR SAILS

We take great pride in helping you prolong the lifespan of the sails you already own. Regular sail maintenance and evaluation in the offseason can prevent a costly sail repair later and will help your sails last as long as possible. Additionally, before you open your checkbook for a new sail bring your sails to us to look over. There might be some adjustments or repairs we can make to buy you some more time, particularly with our Precision Recuts. Precision Recuts give new life to your sails by restoring up to about 90% of their original shape at a fraction of the price of a new sail.

DIALING IN THE LUFF CURVE FOR PEAK PERFORMANCE

Take a picture of your mainsail and genoa when it’s brand new, and hold onto that for future reference. As a sail ages, sail cloth naturally stretches making the sail deeper, which in turn makes it less efficient. It’s great if you have the budget to replace your main every few years, but it’s not always necessary. A small adjustment can make all the difference in performance.

Quantum Sail Scan powered by VSPARS is a simplified version of the very powerful VSPARS real-time sail-scanning tool used on grand prix programs like Quantum Racing. Any photo uploaded to the program creates a digital version of your sail, allowing us to analyze the flying shape and determine where it may need to be recut. It’s a good idea to have the luff curve on your mainsail and genoa evaluated every three to five years.

These photos can be taken to your loft for tips on adjusting your trim and rig settings to get the best flying shapes.

ON-THE-WATER COACHING

Many of our customers are first-time boat owners. We’ll deliver your sails, and then go out sailing with you to get it set up and trimmed for performance. We’re available for on-the-water coaching to help you dial in crew work and communication. Farley Fontenot, the co-founder of Quantum Sails, has coached everyone from the J105 Local North American Champion to the 2018 new Swan 78 from Hamburg, Germany.

BUILDING A CUSTOM SAIL REPAIR KIT

Your sail repair kit should be unique to your boat and type of sailing. We’ve got a good starter list, but spend some time talking to the team at your local loft and we can line up the perfect kit for you. They can also give you tips and tricks on how to handle the most common repairs you’ll likely see during your adventures or regattas. You can also check out our photo guide to some common repairs and how to fix them.

At the end of the day, anything you need from sails to advice, our entire staff such as Rese McLaughlin, a 30 year veteran of our loft with a focus on spinnakers and James Berry, our highly trained and experienced service tech, are here to help you every step of the way – so be sure to use our expertise to help you meet your challenges.

Meet Tom, The Boat Coach

April 30th, 2018

boatcoach 227x300 Meet Tom, The Boat CoachMy first encounter to boating was being drug up and down the San Bernard River near Churchill bridge behind a Yellow Jacket 15’ runabout trying to mount the skis – yes, two skis.

I graduated to boat building during 11th grade summer break when my best friend and I decided to create a sailboat with no plans or even pictures. Remarkably, it turned out to look about right for a Laser.  The designer, my buddy, was a little ahead of his time and went on to graduate UT as an aeronautical engineer and a career at NASA

I was addicted, and from then on I cannot remember ever not owning at least one boat. There was always something to be installed, repaired or improved on any boat I owned. My passion crowded the need for 100% adherence to my real job. But it was easier when I bought a Offshore 27 Choey Lee sloop, had it trucked into Houston and planted in my driveway for a major refit, including refreshing the mast and rigging.

Can you imagine the West University ordinance police if that was tried now! But still it was not the boat I had in mind for what I had in mind.

I had upgraded to a 40’ Valiant and proposed to my girlfriend that we take off and spend a year cruising the Caribbean. She said ‘let’s go!’ and off we sailed for a year across the Gulf, the Keys, Bahamas, DR, Virgins and Windwards and Leewards to the Grenadines. 

When you’re out on a trip like that, you might need to know how to fix whatever went wrong.      

For boat consulting, call Tom at 713-254-3105. First 12 callers to make an appointment get one hour free.

Alex Leva of Blue Wave Boats

April 30th, 2018

Blue wave alex Alex Leva of Blue Wave Boats

Alex Leva, left, and Tim Long with a mixed bag of fish.

Blue Wave Boats is excited to announce that long-time industry professional, Alex Leva has joined the company as manufacturer representative and director of fishing.

In his new role with the brand, Leva will be responsible for manufacturer and dealer relations in Florida and the entire East Coast.  Steven Parks, Blue Wave president commented, “We are thrilled to bring Alex on board.  Not only is he well respected for his work with other leading boat brands, he’s got a great eye for design, growth and marketing opportunities.  His experience will be invaluable as we continue to grow the brand.”

Leva is a 33-year veteran in the boating industry, having most recently served as president of HydraSports Custom Boats. Under his leadership HydraSports Custom brought the world’s largest center console, the 53 Suenos, to market.

A little-known fact is in 1999 Leva visited the Blue Wave facility in Oklahoma with his friend and fishing buddy, Tim Long, to explore positions as reps.  While Leva decided to stay with HydraSports, Long joined Parks Manufacturing and became a minor partner in 2017.  Leva remained close to his friend Tim as well as the Parks family, who developed the Blue Wave and Silver Wave brands of boats.   

Leva states, “What attracted me to the Blue Wave brand in the first place is what brings me back today; the versatility, performance and pricing of the boats is without comparison in the industry.”  Leva is especially drawn to the 2800 Pure Hybrid and the 2400 Pure Bay for their inshore, skinny water capabilities and their ability to run 40 miles offshore into the Gulf.  Leva goes on to say, “These hulls are magic.  I totally understand why the Blue Wave brand is the go-to boat for the top guides in Texas and Louisiana.  It’s going to be a lot of fun bringing these boats to Florida and the East Coast.”   

About Blue Wave Boats

Blue Wave was founded in 1992 and is headquartered in Seminole, OK. Blue Wave builds bay boats from 20’ to 28.’  In 2017 Blue Wave announced the 2800 Pure Hybrid, the world’s largest bay boat.  This model immediately gained the boating industry’s attention, even earning a Best Boat title from Florida Sportsman Magazine.

For more information, visit www.bluewaveboats.com

TPWD Projects 82-Day Red Snapper Season

April 30th, 2018

2018 red snapper season 300x225 TPWD Projects 82 Day Red Snapper Season

Private recreational anglers fishing in federal waters off the Texas coast will see a projected 82-day season starting June 1 under an agreement between the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS).

The agreement is a modified version of the Red Snapper Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) application submitted to NMFS earlier this year, and will allow TPWD to establish the opening and closing of the red snapper fishery in federal waters off the Texas coast for private recreational anglers fishing from their own vessels in 2018 and 2019.

Based on current harvest quota estimates, TPWD projects an 82-day red snapper season in federal waters, while state waters (out to 9 nautical miles) are expected to remain open year-round. Bag and size limits will remain unchanged under the permit; 2 fish per person daily with a 16-inch minimum size limit in federal waters, and 4 fish per person daily with a 15-inch minimum in state waters.

In September 2017, NMFS invited each of the Gulf States to apply for an EFP that, if approved, would authorize the states to manage recreational red snapper harvest in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Texas submitted its application for an EFP in February 2018 and subsequently held three public meetings along the coast and set up a web portal online for official public comment. The public overwhelmingly supported the original EFP application and the combination of the private recreational angler sector with the for-hire sector. Under this scenario, anglers were projected to receive up to 104 fishing days in federal waters.

While NMFS accepted the EFP allowing TPWD to manage the red snapper fishery, it rejected the application’s plan to combine all recreational anglers into one user group. “While we respectfully disagree with that decision, we are confident that Texas can successfully manage the red snapper fishery to the benefit of anglers and the resource. As such, this is a positive step forward in our larger discussions with NMFS and the Gulf States about state-based management of the red snapper fishery,” said Carter Smith, executive director of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

“Historically, charter boats have been included by NMFS in its allocation for recreational anglers.  As a result, I believe it was unreasonable for NMFS to refuse to include the for-hire sector under the Exempted Fishing Permit offered to Texas,” said Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission Chairman Ralph H. Duggins. “I have advised senior representatives at NMFS that I will vigorously oppose any future efforts to privatize the charter sector through the use of individual fishing quotas.  To do so would undermine the fundamental linchpin of the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation – that fish and wildlife are public resources.”

Help TPWD better manage this resource by downloading the iSnapper app on your smart phone and reporting your red snapper landings.

La Izquierda Surf and Music Festival

April 23rd, 2018

La Izquierda is a surf and music festival dedicated to enriching and uniting communities of Galveston, the Gulf Coast and beyond through a good old fashioned surf competition and Fun-raiser for the Surfrider Foundation. And of course there has to be music.

Local and touring bands and artists come from near and far to celebrate surf culture and the preservation of our natural waters and beach habitat with groovy tunes.

There’s also a beer competition. Artisan beers will be available for the price of one beer-one purchased ticket and at the end of the day, the brewery with the most ale donated, wins the prize. (Go GIB)

There is an 8 am highly encouraged free surf and coffee session sponsored by Galveston Coffee Roasters with yoga going on by the beach. Live Music and surf competitions ($30 entrance fee) go from Ten to Ten (am/pm). Prizes include cool artwork, gear and an all inclusive world class Surf Getaway.

For information and the line-up as it appears visit, please visit our website at www.laizquierdafest.com. We also encourage everyone to like and share the facebook page, La Izquierda Surf and Music Festival. For inquiries about getting involved or non-profit sponsorship opportunities contact robert at robertkuhnmusic@gmail.com.

Flier 1.0 La Izquierda Surf and Music Festival

Haynie Custom Bay Boats – 25′ Magnum

March 5th, 2018

 Haynie Custom Bay Boats   25 Magnum

haynie fd789218dbb4e21f7267ca50532332aa59d509521a94b31e82195d7d4c639a54 300x173 Haynie Custom Bay Boats   25 MagnumWith hundreds of miles of Texas coast line, Haynie custom bay boats can cover it all. From the open waters that can kick up a healthy chop on the Galveston Bay complex to the flats of Rockport, you won’t find a more superior ride. The 25 Magnum is the newest addition to the Haynie line-up and it is a monster.

The Magnum handles extremely well in choppy conditions. The hull is 24’ 11” long and has an 8’ 3” beam. This V-hull will draft in 10” of water, get up in 16-18” of water, and will run in 6-8” of water. With a 250-hp Mercury® Pro XS®, this boat will run between 55-60 mph. With a 350-hp Mercury® Verado®, it will run 65-70 mph depending on the deck layout and rigging.

All Haynie boats come on a custom aluminum Coastline Trailer built in Seadrift, Texas. Each trailer is built for your boat and comes standard with L.E.D. lights and smooth riding torsion axles.

Located in Aransas Pass, Chris’s Marine is a family owned full service marine dealership and the largest Haynie boat dealer. Stop by and visit the nice folks at Chris’s Marine and let them help you design your perfect fishing boat. The options are endless!

CHRIS’S MARINE:
1213 W. Wheeler Ave
Aransas Pass, Texas
361-758-8486
www.hayniebayboats.com
www.chrismarineboats.com

Tight Budget? How to get the most out of your current sails

March 1st, 2018

Tight Budget Image Tight Budget? How to get the most out of your current sails

Part of managing a sailing program of any kind–be it cruising or racing–is balancing the budget. From deck hardware to bottom paint and sails, something always needs replacing or fixing. Luckily when it comes to sails, there are a few inexpensive things you can do to help you extend that budget a little further.

1. GET YOUR SAILS INSPECTED

Sail inspections can bring to light not only torn stitches or tired webbing, but also use issues that may be causing damage to your sail. For example, broken stitching on the luff of the sail could indicate too much halyard tension or dimples in your spinnaker could be the result of crew pulling it down by grasping the middle of the sail instead of using the tapes.

Annual inspections should be part of every program with the goal of maximizing the life of the sail. Catching and fixing a few small problems (especially if the sail is older) can also prevent catastrophic failure on the water.

2. RECUT YOUR SAILS EVERY FEW YEARS

All sails stretch and lose shape over time and through use. If you’re experiencing the tell-tale signs of stretched sails–an inability to point, difficulty steering, or lack of power under sail–it doesn’t necessarily mean you need new sails. Many sailors don’t realize sails can be recut to bring back up to 90 percent of their original shape and extend their life at a fraction of the cost of new ones. Typically, one or two recuts can be done over the life of a sail. Recutting sails has been a common practice for pro programs for years, sometimes adjusting and recutting sails between race days.

You’ll want a handful of good sail shape photos to take to the loft along with your sail. And bonus points if you take photos of your sails on an annual basis! Click here to learn how to get the best shots and start your recordkeeping. If you’re curious about the recut process and benefits, click here for an article to shed some light on what you need to know about recuts.

3. HAVE YOUR SAILS PROFESSIONALLY REPAIRED

You might have saved the day with your quick fix when the spinnaker caught on a turnbuckle and started to rip, but did you remember to take it to the loft for a proper repair afterward? Onboard sail repairs are great when you need to finish the sail and get back to the dock safely, but they’re not meant to be a permanent fix. You’d be surprised how easy it is to forget you have a few strips of duct tape holding part of your sail together when it’s packed out of sight and out of mind. As you can guess, ignoring damage will not end well for the sail or your budget.

4. CHECK YOUR RIG TUNE

If your rig tune is out of whack, it can significantly affect sail performance. Before you throw in the towel with your current sails, check to make sure the issue isn’t your rig. Have an expert sail with you to see what adjustments might remedy the problem. This is especially important for cruisers who don’t regularly tune their rigs for conditions the way a race program might. We have more information on that here.

5. CONSIDER SAIL ADD-ONS

There are a number of sail add-ons and updates that can help improve functionality and extend their lifespan. Reefing points, UV covers, and spreader patches are all on the list. Talk to your sailmaker about what modifications can be made to help the sail work better and make it usable for a few more years.

6. LOOK BEYOND THE SAIL

It is important to look at the health and setup of your boat’s entire system in order to get the most out of your sails. Not all systems are created equally, and having the right sail handling system for your needs will help reduce stress on the sails. Roller furlers are great for easily and smoothly using your headsail, especially if you have a novice crew or sail shorthanded. Mainsail handling systems, such as the Dutchman and an in-mast or boom furling system, can also come in handy and help to reduce wear-and-tear on your sail.

Of course, the right system needs to be in good shape. If the sail handling system is failing, you’re at risk of damaging your sail. Similarly, sun-rotted lines or finicky winches pose threats to sails under load, as do sticky tracks and tired blocks. Invite your sailmaker or local rep to your boat for help identifying problem areas or to discuss options for improving your sail handling systems.

You shouldn’t give up on your trusty sails just because you’re starting to experience performance issues or they’re getting older. Call your sailmaker and explore a few of these ideas before you open your checkbook to pay for a new set. If you decide a new set is the right solution, use this information and the expertise of your sailmaker to ensure your sails are setup properly and you’re using best practices and sail care services to maximize their lifespan and protect your investment.

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Contact Quantum Sails Gulf Coast at gulfcoast@quantumsails.com or 281-474-4168 to learn more about getting the most out of your sails. You can also visit QuantumSails.com for more great tips and tricks to help you meet all of your sailing challenges.