The Yacht Sales Company
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Laguna Harbor
Sundance Grill

2017 Lone Star Shootout

blue marlin 2017 Lone Star Shootout

Slight Edge took first place blue marlin at the 2016 Lone Star Shootout.

Now in its 13th year, The Lone Star Shootout is an Invitational Billfish tournament known for its great format, abundant, spirited festivities, large payouts to participants and, most importantly, for its contributions to numerous charitable causes. The Lone Star Shootout provides the opportunity to compete against some of the Gulf Coast’s most talented billfish teams in a format and location that is second to none!

With the central Texas coast location in Port O’Connor, the tournament draws the top billfish tournament teams from South Texas to Florida to compete in the unique format that emphasizes billfish release, women and junior participation and a relaxed family friendly atmosphere.

Often coined “the highlight of the event” (outside of catching the winning fish), the Shootout Champion’s Party is the culmination of nearly a week of preparations, long hours, hard fishing and FUN! Praised for the generous open bar, tasty catered food, live musical entertainment and “Saloon” atmosphere, this night is the true apex of the event. The revealing of the winners and the passing on of The Perpetual Champion’s Trophy also occurs on Saturday night. This magnificent trophy is the prized possession of each year’s champion and has become one of the most sought after trophies on the Gulf Coast tournament trail.

Caracol Club has played host to the Tournament for the past 8 years and, along with the great bay city of Port O’Connor, will welcome the Tournament again this year. Known for its tranquility, laid-back fishing village atmosphere and easy access to the premier billfish spots in the gulf, the town of Port O’Connor is alive with action the entire week of The Lone Star Shootout. Numerous sponsors (and quite a few participants) are residents of or business owners in Port O’Connor and the tournament welcomes the community and visitors to come to the weigh in at Caracol Club on Saturday, July 22nd to see the beautiful boats and amazing fish being weighed in.

Last year over 45 boats competed for the title and coveted Perpetual Trophy. Online entry is currently open on the Tournament website (www.thelonestarshootout.com), along with tournament rules, scoring and side pot information, prior year’s results, photos and much more!

Don’t forget to follow all the events and photos from this year’s event on The Lone Star Shootout’s social media channels:

Participants, volunteers and Shootout guests are encouraged to actively participate on the above channels by using the “check in,” tag and share features of social media! We welcome your photos, videos and interaction!

Please find, below, a schedule of events for this year’s Lone Star Shootout. Dates and times are subject to change prior to the start of the event without prior notice. Please check the Shootout website for the most accurate, up to date information.

DATE TIME EVENTS / LOCATION

Sunday, July 16, 2017

  • 3:00 p.m. Boats may arrive. Caracol Yacht Club, Port O’Connor

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

  • 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. Registration and side pot entry at Lone Star Saloon
  • 7:00 p.m. Lone Star Pot Party at Lone Star Saloon. Come enjoy a delicious dinner and open bar. Dinner will be served from 7-9 p.m. Last chance to enter side pots

Thursday, July 20, 2017

  • 2:00 p.m. Mandatory Captain’s Meeting at Lone Star Saloon.
  • 5:00 p.m. Boats may depart Port O’Connor jetties

Friday, July 21, 2017

  • 12:01 a.m. START FISHING!
  • 7:00 p.m. Midnight Weigh station will be open for blue marlin only

Saturday, July 22, 2017

  • 3:00 p.m. Quit Fishing – All lines out of the water
  • 3:00 p.m. Weigh station open
  • 6:00 p.m. Boats must be in the POC jetties to turn in videos or weigh fish
  • 8:00 p.m. Lone Star Shootout Champion’s Party at Lone Star Saloon. Come join us for a fantastic steak dinner, open bar, awards presentation and live music by the Line Up Band!

2017 Billfish Tournaments

cajun canyon 2017 Billfish Tournaments

Cajun Canyons Billfish Classic

May 30 – June 5

Venice, LA

ComeFishLA.com

mgcbc logo 2017 Billfish Tournaments

Mississippi Gulf Coast Billfish Classic

June 5 – 11

Biloxi, MS

mgcbc.com

Deep Sea Roundup

July 6 – 9

Port Aransas, TX

DeepSeaRoundup.com

Poco Bueno

July 12 – 15

Port O’Connor, TX

Poco-Bueno.com

Lone Star Shootout

July 18 – 23

Port O’Connor, TX

TheLoneStarShootout.com

Bastante John Uhr Memorial Tournament

July 26 – 30

Rockport, TX

RockportTournament.com

Texas International Fishing Tournament

Aug. 2 – 6

Port Isabel, TX

tift.org

Texas Legends

Aug. 9 – 13

Port Aransas, TX

txlegends.com

Texas Billfish Classic

Aug. 16 – 19

Freeport, TX

TexasBillfishClassic.com

TWAT

Aug. 25 – 27

Port Aransas, TX

GoFishTX.com

Fools Rush In

fly fishing reds Fools Rush In

By Capt. Steve Soule

www.ultimatedetailingllc.com

It isn’t always a question of right or wrong. Sometimes it becomes more a matter of better or worse. Everyone has their own idea of how to approach each fishing situation, some well thought out, others are much more haphazard. The “approach,” the level of stealth, and knowledge of the area you are fishing can have a huge impact on success or failure when it comes to catching fish.

As anglers, most of us start each day with some form of a plan on what we want to catch and where we plan to try to catch it. With experience, these plans get better and more detailed. The bottom line is that we all benefit from having a goal in mind to accomplish each day on the water. If we give more thought to what that goal is, and how we might be able to tilt the scales in our favor when it comes to achieving that goal, we all stand to catch more fish, or at the very least, gain more knowledge that will lead to more fish in the future.

I feel certain that most experienced anglers have a plan of attack for each day that they fish. A location picked based on experience, knowledge of an area, or information about an area. Novices, or anglers newer to an area, the plan is likely not so well thought out.  This isn’t to say that a novice angler can’t or won’t catch as many fish, just that they don’t possess that level of experience to know exactly where to go or when to go to certain areas.

As an experienced angler, your goal should be to refine your knowledge and hone your fishing skills. As a novice or less experienced angler, your goal should be learn areas and develop an understanding of the structure, tides, and other factors that will influence the location and movements of the fish.

Take your time, use stealth when arriving and working the area you intend to fish.

As many times as I’ve talked about structure over there years, I realize that there is still a lot of confusion surrounding the topic. Structure goes well beyond just what we can see above the water; sometimes its obvious and sometimes its very subtle. Some of the many things that I consider structure can often be hard to detect. There is obvious structure like shorelines, reefs, rocks but sometimes the little things like grass, guts, humps and very subtle depressions are the keys to finding fish holding points and movement pathways. Finding these in shallow clear water is much easier than in open water. Wading and having actual contact with the bay floor can be a big help, and for those fishing deeper waters from a boat, learning to read a depth machine can be crucial.

Something interesting to remember, is that it isn’t just the contours of the bay floor, but also what’s on the bay floor that will impact when and where fish will be. Mud, grass, shell, clay, sand and many other things determine what type of prey will be in an area during different seasons and their predators.

Don’t just show up to an area and rush through it. So often I watch people on the water rush into an area, only to turn around and leave 15 minutes later. There is very little that can be gained in this approach. Unfortunately, in most cases the fish aren’t just waiting for us to arrive and throw things at them. In fact, most of the time we scare fish as we arrive and often shut down feeding behavior with our rapid and noisy arrival. This will spook fish in an area, slowing or stopping the bite temporarily.

Take your time, use stealth when arriving and working the area you intend to fish. Though it has become increasingly popular to run boats shallow and look for fish, this approach has significant short and long term impact on the environment and the fish. Starting with the obvious, sea grass and boat propellers do not mix! Some grasses recover relatively fast while others can take long periods to regrow. Prior to Hurricane Ike, there was very little natural grass growth in Galveston’s West Bay. Through man’s intervention, grasses returned and had a positive impact on bay habitat and water clarity. Fishing the same areas without the grass, was a world of difference. If just enjoying and appreciating the grass habitat isn’t enough, there is a Texas law in place that prohibits destruction of sea grasses.

Beyond the habitat impact, there is a huge short and long term impact on the fish. The sound of an outboard motor can not only be heard, but also felt by fish at a great distance. Knowing that fish are sensitive to vibration and sound should make us all aware that a hasty approach, using the big motor, doesn’t usually result in great catches.

Lets take this a step further. I know all too well how cool it is to see fish moving and feeding in shallow water, having spent over 35 years fishing shallow water from poling skiffs and other shallow water boats. I’ve seen a lot and learned a ton about fish behavior and their reaction to different things that enter their environment. Moving too fast in a poling skiff, a slight stumble when wading, and many other subtle sounds can alert fish. The practice of “burning shorelines” has way more negative impact on fish. A slow, and methodical approach will lead to much more productive fishing.

Take your time, use stealth in your approach, use the day as an opportunity to study, not just fish, and you may just learn how many things are missed by so many fishing around you. Fishing from a more methodical perspective will help you shorten the learning curve and improve your fishing not just today, but in the future as well.

Memorial Day Weekend

birdsworking2 Memorial Day Weekend

Birds working. Photo by Kelly Groce.

The start of our summertime coastal fishing

By Capt. Joe Kent

While not the official start of our summertime fishing season, Memorial Day Weekend often offers excellent conditions for both inshore and offshore fishing.  For many anglers it is their first run of the year to offshore waters.

Others focus on the jetties and bays, with all areas capable of producing some nice fish.

Most years, the water temperature has reached the 80-degree mark and, while not as warm as in the mid-summer range of July through mid-September, it is at the point when all of our summertime fish are around.

The bay waters are not so warm as to keep trout and other fish that are sensitive to dissolved oxygen levels, in deep water.  This means that wade fishing the shorelines continues to be a viable option for catching trout, reds and other fish.

During May, the jetties begin turning on with trout activity and other fish join the prized specks in feeding up and down the rocks.  May through August is prime time around the collection of granite rocks known as the North and South Jetties and many locals add still another designation, that being the Bolivar Jetties for the North and the Galveston Jetties for the South.

Regardless of which designation you use, Memorial Day Weekend is a great time to fish them.

Bird action in both East and West Bays will continue until the waters warm to the point that the fish go deeper.  Normally that does not take place until late June or early July.

kent king Memorial Day Weekend

Polly Kent with Joe Kent’s 48 pound ‘smoker kingfish’ in 1972.

Memorial Day Weekend is a Holiday Weekend that I always have looked to as the time to head offshore, conditions permitting.  My first Memorial Day trip was in 1972 and what a trip it was.  King mackerel were thick beginning about 10 miles south of the Galveston or South Jetty.  Before that I had made an offshore trip in my boat only four or five times over the previous years.

A learning experience it was.  One of the largest kings I have ever caught was landed that day.  It was a real “smoker” that weighed 48 pounds on the unofficial scales at Wilson’s South Jetty Bait Camp.

Wayne Tucker, operator of the bait camp, said the king was one of the largest he had seen.

For years thereafter Memorial Day Weekend was set aside for offshore fishing and the percentage of times we were able to make it beyond the jetties was higher than normal for offshore trips.

Some of the largest pelagic fish which include kings, ling, sharks and Dorado make it to the shallower offshore waters during May and early June, with Memorial Day right in the middle of that timeframe.

Besides good fishing and statistically good weather, the Memorial Day Weekend does not normally have the intense heat we experience later in the summer.  One advantage of fishing offshore during this time is that the crowds are much lighter than for inshore fishing.

While inshore fishing is in its prime, the weekend is one of the busiest on the water.  Normally, that does not bode well for fishing and one way to escape the heavy concentrations of boats is to head out from the jetties and enjoy the offshore.

Don’t forget the sunscreen, as the sun is intense, and that warmth of the season along with good fishing and crabbing, make Memorial Day Weekend a very special time of year.

Keep up with Joe Kent’s daily fishing report here.

Gaining Knowledge

WayneDenaDavis Gaining Knowledge

Wayne and Dena Davis caught some nice trout with Capt. Dillman despite high winds that day.

By Capt. David C Dillman

Spec-tacular Trout Adventures409-632-0924

Albert Einstein stated that “The only source of knowledge is experience.” When it comes to fishing, I firmly believe this quote holds true. There are many written books, articles and even videos on how to catch speckled trout. Lots of that information is excellent and a great resource for gaining some knowledge about the sport. But true knowledge of how and where to catch speckled trout comes from years of experience pursuing these fish.

In my 30 years of experience guiding fishing trips, I am always asked “When is the best time to catch trout?” For the majority of people that fish, it all starts with the month of May. During the first week of May, there will be a movement of speckled trout into our bay system through the Galveston Jetties. They come from the beachfront and these fish are commonly known as “tide runners.” Do they all come at once? No, but the majority of “tide runners” come May and June. As they make their way up the Houston Ship channel, these fish split into three different directions. Some move east, others west, and some head straight up the channel depending upon the salinity of the water. That is why you will read about the increase of catches in areas like Hanna’s Reef in East Bay, and the Dollar Point area on the Western side of Galveston Bay.

June arrives and so begins our summer fishing pattern in Galveston Bay. The trout begin to seek shelter of the deeper water shell pads located in our bay system. A majority of these “tide runners” can be found near the shell pads adjacent to the Houston ship channel from Markers 52-72.  They will also filter towards the numerous gas well scattered in close proximity of the channel. With every incoming tide more fish will be pushed into this area. In my years of fishing the channel and observation, speckled trout use this area to stage and spawn.

During this time of year, trout can be caught on a variety of artificial lures, but live baits seem to produce the better results. Live shrimp and croakers are the top two natural baits. Shrimp can be fished on the bottom or under a popping cork. Croakers should be fished utilizing a carolina rig or Texas rig. Eagle Point Fishing Camp always has a great supply of both and has easy access to the above prime locations!

If you want to gain further “knowledge” of these areas, I offer guided trips out of Eagle Point. Also orientation trips can be arranged where I go in your boat. Get out and experience the great trout fishing Galveston Bay has and as always, be careful on the water.

History of the Houston Yacht Club

HYC1 History of the Houston Yacht Club

Invitation to the Centennial Celebration of the Houston Yacht Club, 1997. Artwork by Al Barnes. Photos: HYC Archives.

Sam Akkerman, author of the book From Buffalo Bayou to Galveston Bay: The centennial history of the Houston Yacht Club, 1897 to 1997 on how it came to fruition. 

akkerman History of the Houston Yacht Club

Sam Akkerman

How did you get started on this project of writing the book?

I became involved in researching and writing about the history of HYC around 1995, two years before the club’s 100 year anniversary celebration. I was invited to attend one of the Centennial Committee meetings where Fleet Historian Tynes Sparks spoke and explained that one of the committee’s goals was to publish a book on the Club’s history and he needed help.

He had boxes of old photographs, clippings, and collections of stories he had been putting together for years. Few early records still existed, but Tynes knew the Club’s legendary history was worth telling and that documentation existed at the Houston Metropolitan Research Center (HMRC).

 As an English major who had always enjoyed research and writing, I was intrigued. Tynes and I scheduled a visit to the HMRC.

On that initial visit we found a Houston Post article describing the first formal meeting of the Club, February 2, 1898 at the Binz Building, Houston’s first skyscraper. It was a thrilling find and I quickly became fascinated by the Club’s history stashed away in that building.

Because the Club’s founders were prominent Houstonians, I read everything I could find on the city’s history and the early 20th century development of the Galveston Bay area as a summer destination for Houston residents.

I located and interviewed many children and grandchildren of the founders and early members. They were all aware of their families’ connections to HYC and generously shared photos and stories.

What surprised you the most as you gathered information about the history of the club?

Many discoveries were made along the way. When I started, we knew that the Club originally met and kept their boats near the foot of Main Street in downtown Houston. Research enabled  us to document specific locations: for a while a wharf was leased at the foot of Travis Street and meetings were held in a ‘tin shack’ near today’s Spaghetti Warehouse.

Another important ‘discovery’ was realizing the true significance of our early membership in the Gulf Yachting Association (GYA). In 1920 we became a founding member of the venerable southern boating organization that promoted inter-club competition in affordable one design boats from Florida to Texas. A bay home was needed for the boats, practices, and competition required by the amateur, family friendly, GYA program which the Club embraced wholeheartedly. I  believe the mission HYC fulfills today was shaped by that program.

And I must mention the oft forgotten role the Club played in the early development of the Houston Ship Channel. The members were not only vocal in their support but their yachts were used to tour dignitaries and visitors who had the power to influence the legislation to dredge the Bayou and Bay into a waterway that would accommodate ocean going vessels.

This focus of the Club continued until World War I. By then the Port was well on its way to becoming the giant we know it as today.

Madlin Stevenson and friends on an R-boat in the Houston Yacht Club harbor in 1929.

Is there a favorite story about some of the members that made you laugh out loud when you were doing research?

Humor reigned throughout the years. Choosing one incident is impossible. Theme parties with elaborate costumes were the norm after World War II. Props might include a live donkey in the Porthole bar or an old footed bathtub for serving “bootleg gin.” Beginning in 1936 the Dumbbell Award was presented periodically to recognize boating mishaps. Recipients and their ‘dumb’ mistakes were carefully recorded in a small gold stamped binder.  Helmsmen, not crew, falling overboard seem to have been quite common.

Where did you grow up and when did you become a member of the Houston Yacht Club?

I was born in Louisiana but grew up in Texas.  My family moved to Houston when I was 12.

In 1989, my husband bought a catamaran and we were sailing it one weekend when we saw a long line of Sunfish being towed behind a motor boat. Each boat had a young skipper on board, relaxing as they cruised along under tow. We learned they were HYC Ragnots (as the Club’s youth are called) and they were on their way across the Bay to an inter-club regatta. My daughters were 9 and 12, a perfect age to become Ragnots and the next summer I was one of the moms in the motor boats towing kids across the Bay.

Is there a favorite time period in the club’s history that really stands out in your mind?

The early years of the Club are among my favorites to study. Members had a fleet of amazing long, sleek luxury yachts which would rival any port in the south. They were prominent businessmen who worked tirelessly to promote the city and ship channel. Yet they commissioned a fleet of small one design sailboats for fair competition. Their younger members formed the Launch Club Canoe Division and explored islands in the Bayou that have long since disappeared. Their cruises were intended for family members and their regattas were events designed to be enjoyed by all ages, boaters and ‘landlubbers’ alike.

Are you currently working on any other projects?

We are proud to have a very well documented article on HYC’s history accepted and included in the recently launched Handbook of Houston, a publication of the Handbook of Texas Online, the most highly respected resource of state history.

Another months long project completed this spring is a permanent exhibit at the Club that honors HYC’s nationally recognized reputation for excellence in race management. Our research documented the national, international, and world regattas that HYC has hosted in the last 120 years. This information was then incorporated into a striking professionally designed display in the Club’s lobby. The project commemorates our 90/120 Celebration – this year the clubhouse is 90 years old and the organization is 120 years old.

Tell me a little bit about your relationship with Rice University.

In 2010 a large portion of our archives was digitized as part of an online exhibit that includes materials from Rice University and the Houston Area Digital Archives at the Houston Public Library. The exhibit, Business and Pleasure on Houston Waterways, explores the relationship Houston has with Buffalo Bayou and Galveston Bay. It was an honor for us to be included in this project and it also provided us with a unique opportunity to preserve our archival materials – the scanned images are safe – permanently stored and accessible online. As well, it  provides another method of sharing our history.

View overlooking lawn, wading pool, signal mast and harbor of the Houston Yacht Club during the Annual Regatta of 1954.

The Houston Yacht Club has a long tradition of bringing families together who love boating on Galveston Bay. In your opinion, is this still the best way to describe the mission of the club today?

Yes. Bringing together families who love the bay does describe what HYC is all about. As the older Ragnots leave for college, a new generation sails out to claim their own place in the cluster of Optis at the start line. Experienced sailors teach the sport and share their boats with novices. New volunteers join the long time volunteers who organize the programs and events for all ages and the well run regattas that make Galveston Bay a nationally known recreational boating center.

100+ Years of Sailing: A History of Sailing Clubs on Galveston Bay

hyc 100+ Years of Sailing: A History of Sailing Clubs on Galveston Bay

Houston Yacht Club   

Organized in 1897, the club was located on Buffalo Bayou in Houston. It was known as the Houston Yacht and Power Boat Club from 1905-1906, and the Houston Launch Club from 1906-1926. In 1927 the club went back to the original name Houston Yacht Club.

Always more than simply a social or boating organization, during the early years it was identified with some of the most fundamental developments in Houston’s growth.

The present day club house was built in 1927 in La Porte. Hurricanes and fires have left their mark on the original building but she still stands today. A charter member of the Gulf Yachting Association, the club is now over a hundred and twenty years old.

seabrooksailing 100+ Years of Sailing: A History of Sailing Clubs on Galveston Bay

Seabrook Sailing Club

The club was founded in 1934 as a means to enjoy sailing with friends in Galveston Bay. That philosophy continues today. The original club was located along the Kemah waterfront.

In 1950 the club purchased the property at 1020 Todville Rd. in Seabrook. Hurricane Ike destroyed the club house in 2008. The new club house was rebuilt and completed through dedicated club members.

Early Members: Earl Gerloff and Martin Bludworth

Texas Corinthian Yacht Club 

Founded in 1938 to educate its members and their families in the art of sailing, seamanship and boat handling.

The original clubhouse completed in 1938 was destroyed by Hurricane Ike in September 2008. The new club house and rebuilt grounds were dedicated Jan. 1, 2010.

Founding Members: Albert Bel Fay, Ernest Bel Fay, Jack Garrett, William Stamps Farish, and William McIver Streetman

Galveston Bay Cruising Association 

GBCA traces its origin back to 1947 when a small group of sailboat racing enthusiasts informally organized the club.  The club existed and prospered as a letter head organization, without elected officers, bylaws, dues, or a home.

The Club was formally organized in 1954 with elected officials, bylaws and handicap races. The Friday night Rum Races are some of the most popular races run on Galveston Bay.

Early member:  Rufus Bud Smith

Lakewood Yacht Club      

Founded in 1955 the club sits on 38 acres with water frontage on Clear Lake. It has four covered sheds and numerous docks. The original club just catered to power boats, but over the years sailboats kept showing up and the club kept growing. Lakewood Yacht Club will host the J-105 North Americans this fall.

Founding Members: Sterling Hogan Sr., Captain WR Parker and JD Kirkpatrick.

2017 AND BEYOND: THE FUTURE OF SAILING

Learning to Fly with Next Generation USA

Whether you are a seasoned sailor or just getting your feet wet, you can’t help but look in awe at the America’s Cup boats – fast, foiling multihulls with a wing instead of a sail.

The United States, represented by team Next Generation USA, is one of 12 countries entered in the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup.  Each team is allowed seven days of practice on the AC45F prior to the event in June.  That’s it, just seven days on a boat unfamiliar to anyone outside a small circle of America’s Cup Teams.

The AC45F is sailed with six crew members and each one has a critical job.  The wing controls the overall power of the boat, so it is in constant motion.  In order to get foiling, the boat needs to be going at least 16 knots and all of the crew must be on the windward side.  Getting up to speed is like taking off in an airplane. The adrenaline is pumping but no one seems concerned that they are screaming downwind, six feet above the water on a 45ft carbon rocket.

Next Generation USA is more than just a group of young sailors. These guys are the face of our country and they will be representing the USA at the highest level of sailing.

Members of Next Generation USA

  • Carson Crain Skipper/Helmsman
  • Matthew Whitehead Wing Trimmer
  • Scott Ewing Soft Sail Trimmer
  • Preston Farrow Grinder
  • Ian Storck Grinder (spare)
  • Markus Edegran Bowman
  • Reed Baldridge Tactician

The Galley: Red Snapper Two Ways

By Betha Merit

Red Snapper is in season and colorful, fresh recipes abound. A fun suggestion for foodies is to research several similar recipes and then add your own twist. In the South, that might be a dash of cayenne or tiny bit of minced jalapeño. Using juice from limes or clementines instead of the standard lemon is another change-up. Creative substitution is a great option with limited galley ingredients while on the water. Who knows, you might invent the seafood equivalent of the genius BLT or PBJ sandwich. Speaking of which, the world is always ready for another take on ceviche…

limecilantro snapper recipe The Galley: Red Snapper Two Ways

Lime Zest Cilantro Snapper

  • 6 (6 to 8-oz) red snapper fillets (with or without skin)
  • 6 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons minced garlic
  • Finely grated lime zest from two limes
  • Juice from the two limes
  • Dash or two of cayenne pepper

Brush both sides of fish with 3 Tablespoons oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss together cilantro, garlic, zest half reserved lime juice, and cayenne in a small bowl.

Pan sear snapper at medium high heat about 4 minutes on each side. Transfer fish, skin side up to a platter. Sprinkle with cilantro mixture and drizzle with remaining 3 Tablespoons oil. If desired, add remaining fresh lime juice.

Side Dish Option: roasted fingerling potatoes cooked with rosemary, butter/olive oil, and garlic.

baked fish recipe The Galley: Red Snapper Two Ways

My Mom’s Baked Fish Recipe

Serves 4 (cut ingredients in half to serve 2)

  • 4 (8-ounce) red snapper fillets, about 1/2-inch thick
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 fresh onion cut in rings
  • 2 bell peppers, cut in rings
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 2 Tablespoons dried parsley flakes
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 2-4 cups cooked rice. (white, brown, jasmine, wild…)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Season the fish with salt and pepper. Spread the onions and peppers in a 13 x 9-inch glass baking dish and place the fish on top. Dot the fish with butter. Sprinkle with a little Worcestershire sauce and parsley and cover with foil.

Bake for 30 minutes then baste fish with pan juices. Sprinkle the fish with Parmesan; if desired, place under the broiler for about 2 minutes or until the cheese browns. Spoon the vegetables and pan juices over the fish.

Serve with steamed rice.

Celebrating Four Years of Coastal Life Coverage

gulf coast mariner 4 year Celebrating Four Years of Coastal Life Coverage

By Charles Milby

Thanks for the memories.

Four years ago we started a boating magazine for Galveston Bay. My background was racing sailboats. I had done it all my life and I still enjoy doing it today. So, that’s what we did. We covered regattas, cruising out to Red Fish, and of course junior sailing.

Early on our readers informed us that they also like to fish along with sailing. We got the message. Now we cover both; offshore fishing and bay fishing along with the yachting scene. It’s been a great four years and we’re looking forward to the next four.

Thank you to all of our advertisers, writers, photographers, contributors and readers. We can’t do what we do without you. Now make sure your boat is in good working order and stay safe. Hope to see you on the bay.

Beautify the Bucket

oliviahopkins Beautify the Bucket

The winning bucket by Olivia Hopkins.

Galveston Artist Boat’s Beautify the Bucket Competition is designed to allow citizens to take an active role in beautifying Galveston’s beaches in a way that also encourages better stewardship behaviors in others. Marine debris is a serious threat to organisms in our coastal and marine ecosystems. While the three “R’s” (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) will help prevent marine debris all throughout the watershed, proper use of trash receptacles can reduce debris directly from the beach.

On Earth Day, April 22, 49 trash cans painted by local artists of all ages were on display at the Texas Adopt-a-Beach Beach Clean Up meeting location at Menard Park on the Galveston Seawall. Later that evening, the trash cans were moved to the Galveston Arts Center during Artwalk, where the public voted on which trash can they liked best for the People’s Choice Award.

All 49 trash cans will be placed on the beach along the seawall for the public to utilize and enjoy. The next Beautify the Bucket competition will be held Sept. 23, 2017. Visit www.artistboat.org for more information.

Winners

Adult

  • 1st Place: Olivia Hopkins
  • 2nd Place: Unbleached Designs (Anabel and Daniel Orta)
  • 3rd Place: Charli and Jim Rohack

Adult Groups

  • 1st Place: Beauties and the Bucket
  • 2nd Place: The Williams Family and Friends
  • 3rd Place: Galveston Cancer Crushers

Youth/Family

  • 1st Place: The Morris Family
  • 2nd Place: Brookside Intermediate Art Club
  • 3rd Place: Cub Scouts Den 3 Pack 615

Don’t Let Your Sails Get Burned

silken 2015 06 03 0499 Don’t Let Your Sails Get Burned

By Quantum Sails

Nobody likes getting sunburned, and neither do your sails. What happens when the sun burns your sails?

If not properly protected, sunburned sails can tear while in use, stranding you and your family. Ultraviolet (UV) covers can help protect your sails and your sailing season. Even seasonal UV exposure in the Northern latitudes can cause serious problems in a short amount of time. Quantum Sails Pacific Loft Service Manager Emre Kalaycioglu has a lot of experience helping customers. Here are his tips.

WHY ARE UV COVERS IMPORTANT?

If you have a furling genoa or mainsail, you probably keep it on your rig for an extended period of time. However, the elements – especially the sun – are harmful to your sails. Over the years, the sun will begin to burn out the sail’s leech, and sunburn will appear on the sail. These sunburned areas weaken over time. While sailing, stress on the sails can cause the threads to break in the weaker areas. A proper UV cover can protect your investment from the damaging UV rays of the sun.

HOW DO I TAKE CARE OF THE UV COVER?

A common misconception is that when a UV cover is installed it will last forever, but the sail cover actually needs to be maintained to last.

Something that most people overlook about their UV covers is how often they need to be re-stitched in order to last. While the UV cover can last anywhere from 4-8 seasons – depending greatly on exposure and maintenance – the thread may only last about half the lifespan of the cover, as it degrades faster than the cover itself. Bringing your sails into your local Quantum Sails loft to have the covers re-stitched will increase the lifespan of your UV covers and ultimately your sails.

Another common mistake most sailors make is keeping their sails hoisted on the boat for an extended period of time. It’s important to drop your sails and, whenever possible, keep them in a cool, dry place between sailing trips. To prevent the UV cover from deteriorating, wash your sails with fresh, clean water on a regular basis, then let them dry completely before refurling (washing and drying is very important for your sails, especially after a rainy season).

When leaving the boat, take extra caution to make sure your sails are set and won’t come loose with any strong winds. An extra sail tie could help prevent your sails from flogging, which will protect your sails and UV cover from extra wear and tear.

WHEN IS IT TIME TO SERVICE?

UV covers degrade with UV exposure and use. While a UV cover in New England may last anywhere from 6-8 seasons, that same cover in the Caribbean may only last 3-4 seasons.

It’s important to check over your sails at the beginning and end of every season. See if there are any chafed or damaged areas on your sail and UV cover. Be sure to check the side of the sail opposite the UV cover. If you see any color change on that side, it’s time to replace the UV cover as soon as possible, as the discoloration means the current UV cover has expired and is no longer protecting your sail against the sun. Delaying that replacement can cause extensive damage to the sail.

WHAT MATERIALS DO YOU SUGGEST FOR A UV COVER?

At Quantum Sails, we recommend Sunbrella UV Cover fabric. Our sewing machine thread we generally use is 138 Dabond thread for sewing UV covers – it’s thicker than what our competitors use, and thus lasts a little bit longer. We can also use UV stable thread, such as Tenara or SolarFix thread, but it’s considerably more expensive, so may not always be the best option.

For more great sailing tips and tricks or to learn about Quantum Sails, visit www.QuantumSails.com.

Family, Fun and Friendships: One Hundred Years of Commitment to the Sea

yacht sales co family Family, Fun and Friendships: One Hundred Years of Commitment to the Sea

Owner of the Yacht Sales Company, Jonathon Davis with his wife Kim, son Cole and daughter Camille at the Sea Star Base Galveston. Photography by Ashley Henry with Hey Pretty Baby Photography.

The Yacht Sales Company

Throughout history sailing has been instrumental in the development of civilization, affording humanity greater mobility than travel over land, whether for trade transport or warfare, and the capacity for fishing. Sailing for pleasure can involve short trips across a bay, day sailing, coastal cruising, and more extended offshore or ‘blue-water’ cruising. These trips can be singlehanded or the vessel may be crewed by families or groups of friends.

For the last 100 years the Mecca of sailing in the United States is the Gulf Coast of Texas, more specifically Galveston Bay, the third largest boating community in the United States. Galveston Bay has a prolific sailing and water lifestyle that embodies beautiful traditions for family, fun, and friendships.

Jonathon Davis, owner and founder of The Yacht Sales Company located in Kemah, has a family with this type of lifestyle. Jonathon and his lovely wife, Kim, have more than 150,000 sea miles between the two of them. Jonathon actually proposed to Kim on a dive on one of their trips at sea. Jonathon feels that family always comes first and has his 4 year old son, Cole, and new baby girl, Camille, go sailing as much as possible. Fun is always a factor with this family.

When Jonathon was creating The Yacht Sales Company he understood what it meant to have a rich history of sailing with the vendors he was choosing to represent and promote at his dealership. He specifically sought out Groupe Beneteau, who has the richest yachting tradition in the industry being privately owned for 130 years. This is reflected deeper in their purchase of CNB and Lagoon, who TYSC is the dealer for as well. With the dealership being located in Kemah, bordering Galveston Bay, he has much to say about family, fun, and friendships on the water.

beneteau 300x224 Family, Fun and Friendships: One Hundred Years of Commitment to the Sea

Jonathon and Kim Davis with Jean Morrison.

Beneteau boatyard, headquartered in France with manufacturing facilities located in South Carolina, was created in 1884 by Benjamin Beneteau. He was a very determined young man and at the early age of 12 he became a ship’s boy on the lugger, Eliza. His dream of building boats would begin on the boatyard of his friend’s father. His determination would convince his uncle, and he entered Rochefort Maritime towards the end of 1879 for his military service. Once out, he decided to create his boatyard near a bridge called, Quai des Greniers, and called his place “Beneteau.” Today, Beneteau is the largest sailboat manufacturer in the world.

Beneteau 1962-1964 and a Beneteau Oceanis Yacht 62.

The growth of Beneteau has been nothing but extraordinary, and it has acquired and incorporated Prestige, CNB, Lagoon, O’Hara, I.R.M., BH, Four Winns, Glastron, Wellcraft, Scarab and Monte Carlo Yacht. Annette Beneteau-Roux has been in command and control of Beneteau for the last 40 years and gives credit to their success to her family, executives, loyal and talented employees, as well as dealers and customers throughout the world, all of whom have become friends. “I believe we are one of the oldest boat building yards in the world to be run by the family as a majority,” said Annette Beneteau-Roux.

Another amazing line within this sailboat dynasty, that holds great family traditions, is Lagoon, which is in association with CNB Yacht Builders. The Lagoon model was established in 1984 and was originally a shipyard building monohull and multihull offshore racing boats. The first generation of cruising catamarans was launched from 1987 to 1996. They are celebrating their 30th year and today the company distributes its yachts in 53 countries. Davis said that the Lagoon is one of the dealerships best sellers! Recently, Jonathon Davis and team, won the Harvest Moon Regatta with owner John Sherer on Sherer’s Lagoon 42 against eight other boats.

When speaking with Davis, he noted that one of the oldest brands of sailing vessels in the United States was Alden. He, and wife Kim, co-captained one of their vessels, the “Krisujen,” designed by Alden.

Alden began his design career as an apprentice in 1902 and started his own design firm in 1909. He had modest success until he won his first Bermuda Race and experienced great success. His race victories were with Malabar VII and Malabar X in 1932 and continued until the long-lived design business finally closed in 2008. Today, the extensive Alden design archive has been gifted to the Hart Nautical Collections of MIT Museum. Jonathon commented that the Krisujen was a dynamic sailing experience and many wonderful memories were established while captaining this vessel.

The Escapade.

The sailing vessel, “Escapade,” built in 1938, holding an impressive amount of racing titles, and becoming known as Queen of the Great Lakes, holds deep inspiration for Jonathon Davis because of one special woman named Jean Morrison. While he was telling the tales of Jean and her exuberance for life, you can hear the admiration and excitement he had for this very special lady. With sailing stories ranging from stateside to international waters the one of the Escapade is one of his favorites. Jean’s husband was not much of a sailor but he appreciated the love that his wife had for sailing. He offered her something she couldn’t refuse. He said, “If you could have any sailboat you wanted what would it be?” Without hesitation she said, “Well, I would want the Escapade!” The vessel held a special place in her heart because she remembers cleaning it as a young girl. The request was granted and it launched an exciting time of sailing worldwide with a crew including her pet monkey. She told Jonathon once, with her childlike enthusiasm, “Jonathon, when you get as old as I am and you find something you love, you damned well better enjoy it!” He has never forgotten those words and makes it a motto for the way he views life.

To bring this story full circle, “friends” would be a good place to end. One of Jonathon Davis dearest friends and closest confidants was Roy Newberry, Sr. Roy had a vivacious life on the water and Davis states, “Everything I know about the water I owe to Roy Newberry.” Sailing brought these two together and the life long friendship never faltered. They sailed together, raced together, and actually won Jonathon’s first Harvest Moon Regatta dating back to 1992 on the sailboat, Alessandra. Jonathon admired everything about this sailor and loved his family. The stories that were shared between them are those of legends.

Jonathon so greatly respected Roy’s life in the local community and to sailing that he did a Cannon Dedication and race in appreciation of his devoted service to both humanity and the sport of sailing before his passing in 2016. Roy always told his kids, “See that crumby little boat over there; realize you can go wherever you want in the world in that!”

In the world of sailing heartstrings are pulled, passion is flared, and history is always made. Jonathon Davis and his family have enjoyed this “sailing life” for a quarter of a century and looks forward to many more years to come. Nothing is more exciting than establishing lifelong memories that are made with family, fun, and friendships due to a commitment to the sea and all that goes with it.

For more information on The Yacht Sales Company please visit www.theyachtsalescompany.com.

 

Red Bull Youth America’s Cup

red bull cup Red Bull Youth Americas Cup

Team Next Generation USA. Photo by Theo Queen.

The twelve teams that will compete in the 2017 Red Bull Youth Americas Cup competition are breaking new ground for young sailors all over the world. They will be racing foiling catamarans and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

All of the competitors, whose ages range from 19 to 24, are getting a taste of what the real America’s Cup teams must deal with in order to compete and perform well in this pressure packed arena known as the America’s Cup sailing.

Fund raising is one of the new skills this team must acquire in order to stick around for the finals. Racing these boats is very expensive. Sails and hardware are pushed to the limits. The crews will train non-stop from now until June aiming to make the finals. All of this costs money. Next Generation USA needs your help. Six guys were chosen to represent our country and have a very good chance to win the regatta. Two of them, Carson Crain and Reed Baldridge, are local guys who grew up sailing right here on Galveston Bay. To make a contribution to the campaign, contact Carson Crain, cmcrain@gmail.com.

 teamnextgen Red Bull Youth Americas Cup

About the Red Bull Youth Americas Cup

Dates: Qualifiers: June 12 – 16 Finals: June 20 – 21

Location: The Great Sound, Bermuda.

Format: Fleet Racing, two qualifying series with six teams in each. Top four teams in each series move on to Finals

Teams: Twelve teams, each representing their country will compete. All team members must be citizens of the country they represent

Boats: The AC45F, a 45-footer that will fly on hydrofoils. Specifications for the AC45F indicate the boat is capable of reaching speeds of over 35 knots, or 40mph/65kmh. The eight AC45Fs used in the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup are the only such boats in the entire world.

Crew: Six sailors onboard. Ages 19 – 24 years

Amenities: America’s Cup Village, Hospitality Tents, Spectator Boats, Grandstand Seating, Jumbotron Screen Viewing

The Location

In 2017, Bermuda’s Great Sound will form a natural amphitheater for the America’s Cup, and the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup will use exactly the same racecourse. Sailing conditions in Bermuda are typically exceptional in June, with historical wind data suggesting that there should be racing conditions 90 percent of the time.

The Boat

In 2017, the youth teams will be sailing the AC45F, a 45-footer that will fly on hydrofoils. Specifications for the AC45F indicate the boat is capable of reaching speeds of over 35 knots, or 40 mph/65kmh. The eight AC45Fs used in the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup are the only such boats in the entire world.

The Teams

Up to 12 national youth teams, each composed of six sailors aged 19-24, will race in the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup 2017, each representing a different nation. Six teams will race through their affiliation with current America’s Cup teams, while up to six additional teams will compete as selected by Red Bull Sport Directors Roman Hagara and Hans Peter Steinacher.

2017 Red Bull Youth America’s Cup Teams

  • Candidate Sailing Team, Austria
  • Team BDA, Bermuda
  • Youth Vikings Denmark, Denmark
  • Team France Jeune, France
  • SVB Team Germany, Germany
  • Land Rover BAR Academy, Great Britain
  • Kaijin Team Japan, Japan
  • NZL Sailing Team, New Zealand
  • Spanish Impulse Team, Spain
  • Artemis Youth Racing, Sweden
  • Team Tilt, Switzerland
  • Next Generation USA, USA

Five Lures for Big Speckled Trout

These time proven big trout lures consistently produce fish over five pounds and have landed me a number of top tournament finishes.

By Capt. Steve Soule

superspookjr Five Lures for Big Speckled Trout

Super Spook Jr.

If the wind is light or I’m fishing in shallow water, my first and often only choice for chasing a trophy would be the Heddon® Super Spook Jr.® in bone with silver sides. Its a small lure in the world of big trout, but that’s what makes it so deadly. Fish in shallow water are much more sensitive to noise and water movements and there are days when the subtle presentation of a smaller lure just works better. With a little practice and variation of the retrieve, you can make the Spook Jr. sound and appear large. The single ball rattle system can be worked gently without spooking fish, but if you work it hard, you can achieve a wide side to side motion with a rather loud clicking to draw them in.

heddonsuperspook Five Lures for Big Speckled Trout

Super Spook

When the chop gets a little bigger, it’s time to tie on a bigger bait. The Heddon® Super Spook® in Okie Shad, or as I have always called it, the “Jimmy Houston,” is a close tie for my all-time favorite topwater. It’s a very natural color combination that works well in dirty water, but produces in clear water when others just won’t. This is not a small top water, in size or sound, but with its more natural color scheme it can be used effectively across the spectrum of conditions. Big or light chop, shallow or deep, this one does it all and I have caught more quality trout on this lure than I could possibly count.

shedog

She Dog

The MirrOLure® She Dog 83MR in Chartreuse/Pearl is another topwater that excels in choppy conditions, but can be deadly in both dirty and clear water. It too has a single ball style rattle, but emits a much higher pitch sound than the Super Spook. I don’t necessarily turn to this one as frequently as some of the others on this list, but when conditions call for it, I always have one ready. This lure and color combination landed me my largest trout to date, a fish just over 29.5” and over nine pounds, in 2010 in Galveston.

fatboy91

Paul Brown Fat Boy

When its time to probe the depths with deadly precision, I turn to the MirrOlure® Paul Brown Fat Boy, a creation of Houston mastermind Paul Brown, probably one of the greatest lure designers to ever live. This lure can take some time to get a grip on, but once you do, it can be fished effectively from less than a foot to depths over six feet. It’s a soft plastic wrapped, cork over wire, baitfish imitating, seductive dancing, finesse bait that has been the demise of many giant trout. Because of the construction of the lure, the Fat Boy can be tuned to swim at different depths, diving slightly up or down with different bends applied to the nose or tail. Chartreuse, gold sides, white belly has always been a favorite color combo for me.

fatboypink

Paul Brown Fat Boy

It’s not really fair to say that there is a fifth in my top five, because it’s a repeat of number four. For many years, the Fat Boy in pink with silver sides has been my go-to for cold winter fishing. This selection is a standard answer concerning winter trout, but my tournament partners can vouch for the fact that in certain conditions, I would start and finish a nine hour day throwing this one lure. It landed me my heaviest trout that I have an accurate weight on, at 9.25 pounds, and has been the lure that led me to more top five finishes in trout tournaments than any other.

These are my choices and I’m sticking to them. Every lure on this list has produced trout over 7.5 pounds in the Galveston Bay system. There is no one single bait that suits every condition set or scenario that you will encounter, and this list may not work for you, but it’s mine and has not changed much over the past ten years. When its time for me to hunt big winter or spring trout, you can rest assured I will have every one of these ready to go.

Galveston Winter Fishing: Deep Or Shallow?

big speckled trout Galveston Winter Fishing: Deep Or Shallow?

Finding trout and redfish when the water goes cold

By Capt. Joe Kent

There has always been a rule of thumb for seasonal fishing.  You should fish deep in mid-summer and winter, and fish shallow in the fall and spring.  While I certainly do not disagree with that, there have been some modifications to that rule for winter fishing around the Galveston Bay Complex.

Several decades ago, anglers could pretty much rely upon the scenario that if you want to catch fish during the winter, fish in deeper waters.  One reason is that the winters were colder and more prolonged than they are today.  Still, fish tend to follow that pattern around the Galveston Bay Complex except in at least one area and that is West Galveston Bay.

West Bay, as we call it, is a relatively shallow bay with few deep holes when compared to other bays such as upper Galveston or East Bays.  West Bay is well-known for its cold weather fishing and in fact, tends to turn off during the warmer months.

corky 300x197 Galveston Winter Fishing: Deep Or Shallow?

Paul Brown’s Original Suspending Twitchbait in Copper Top.

Slow sinking lures retrieved at a slow pace produce the fish.

This small bay system that spans between the Galveston Causeway and San Luis Pass is one of the top spots to catch trophy trout during the winter and early spring.  Reds also are plentiful that time of year and when looking at the average depth it is surprising that it is so productive during the cold months.

Harry Landers, a retired and once popular fishing guide out of Jamaica Beach, told me that West Bay was a well-kept secret for winter fishing.  He felt the same way about Chocolate Bay, a shallow bay system that adjoins Lower West Bay to the north.

Landers caught many trophy-sized trout during his hey-day and placed many happy guests into trout that would go to the taxidermist rather than the kitchen.

Landers knew West Bay and Chocolate Bay like the back of his hand and shared a few of his secrets, many of which are common knowledge among fishing guides today.

While Offatts Bayou and its famous Blue Hole caught the attention of anglers during the winter, Landers was out fishing the shallower waters of West Bay.  Wade fishing, he felt, was the most productive way of fishing the shallow waters.

No doubt when freezes took place, Offatts was the place to fish. Once the water started warming, trout would venture out of the deep water looking for bait.

Mud bottoms during the afternoon tide, either incoming or outgoing, hold the warmest water and attract the small finfish and crustaceans.  In turn, predator fish such as specks and reds will be nearby looking for a winter’s meal.

Shell bottoms also are popular especially in deeper waters.

During periods of afternoon incoming tides, large sow trout can be found roaming the shorelines, especially grassy areas for bait.  Wade fishing is much preferred for trying to entice an older and wiser fish to bite, as boats make noise and noise easily spooks trout.

Another of the popular choices is narrow channels for reds.  While West Bay has a limited number of those channels, offshoots from the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW) are plentiful.  Carancahua and Green’s Lakes, along with several man-made canals just north of the ICW, offer excellent action on reds during outgoing winter tides.

Winter fishing styles apply to all of the areas mentioned and probably the biggest of the techniques is a very slow retrieve of the lure.  Slow sinking lures retrieved at a slow pace produce the fish.

While there will be some good fishing in deeper waters this winter, try shallow and go for the glory that is a trophy trout.

Galveston Bay Winter Fishing – What to do?

By Capt. David C Dillman

Spec-tacular Trout Adventures409-632-0924

galveston bay speckled trout Galveston Bay Winter Fishing   What to do?

Windy Marshall with a cold weather trout.

Winter is finally here. November of 2016 was very mild, with only a few cool mornings followed by record high temperatures. December arrived and in the first week we experienced record rainfall in some areas and our first real cold front. January and February are typically cold and wet months along the Upper Coast of Texas. This is a great time to enjoy some indoor activities or things that you might have neglected. Fishing still can be good, but you just have to pick the right days according to the weather.

January begins with the Houston Boat Show, held at Reliant Center Jan. 6 – 15, the show hosts the newest boats, motors and campers for the coming year. There are numerous vendor booths, with a large section dedicated to the sportsman/fisherman. I will be at the Eagle Point Fishing Camp booth the first few days of the show. Stop by and we can visit about fishing, Galveston Bay, etc.

Yes, fishing can be good during this time of year. Fishing between the fronts will be the key to your success. The upper reaches of the bay system, namely Burnett, Scott and San Jacinto Bays, draw most of the attention this time of year. The bays offer shelter from the North winds and as long as the water stays salty, redfish and speckled trout can be caught. Sylvan Beach and Bayland Park offer the closest launches to reach these areas.

Other fishing grounds to consider are the NW/W shorelines of Galveston Bay. Sylvan Beach down to Eagle Point offers protection from a NW-W wind. The area is littered with structure like old pier pilings and numerous deep water shell reefs. The traditional winter time hotspot known as Galveston’s West Bay, will also see its fair share of action. Live bait supplies can be scarce this time of year. While most people will be throwing artificial lures, bait fisherman can check with Eagle Point at 281 339-1131 for live shrimp.

Last but not least, these months are perfect to have your maintenance completed on your rods, reels, and tackle. Also, schedule any service for your boat and motor now. Don’t wait for spring to get them in the shop. I will be in Costa Rica the middle of January catching sailfish! My boat goes to the shop soon after my return.

 I hope everyone had a wonderful Holiday break! Tight Lines to all!

Healthy New Year Recipes

By Betha Merit

few years back, I realized that new year’s resolutions were effective for me when adding something to my life, rather than taking away. So, instead of a plan to cut out cheeseburgers and chicken fried steak and doughnuts, let’s add veggies! And, let’s narrow it down to a group of veggies called brassica vegetables.

Brassica veggies are commonly referred to as cruciferous, so that puts us on the right trail. Broccoli, radishes, kale, cauliflower, brussels sprouts and many of the wonderful but unidentified veggies in your Chinese take-out are on this list. They are known for their disease-fighting substances and are low in calories, fat, and sodium. A good source of fiber, they contain a variety of essential vitamins and minerals, and there’s more.

They also contain phytochemicals, which occur naturally in plants and have a variety of health benefits for our bodies. One of the best-known benefits in brassica is their apparent cancer-fighting properties. These vegetables contain sulfur-rich compounds knowns as glucosinolates, which explains their characteristic bitter taste and pungent smell. Studies have shown that consumption of brassicas could reduce the risk for multiple types of cancer. Boiling these vegetables can reduce the compounds that give this healthy effect, but steaming, microwaving, and stir frying don’t appear to do so.

An internet search for brassica or cruciferous vegetables will delight you with colorful images and recipes to encourage you in your add-brassica-veggies new year’s resolution. The following list is a good start:

Brassica Vegetables

  • Arugula
  • Bok choy
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Chinese cabbage
  • Collard greens
  • Daikon radish
  • Horseradish
  • Kale
  • Kohlrabi
  • Land cress
  • Mustard greens
  • Radish
  • Rutabaga
  • Shepherd’s purse
  • Turnip
  • Watercress
veggie stir fry Healthy New Year Recipes

Spicy Brassica Veggie Coconut Stir-fry

  • 2 TBSP coconut oil
  • 2 eggs, beaten (or substitute one chicken breast, cubed)
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • 3/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 cup small slices or pieces of broccoli and cauliflower (or brassica vegetables of your choice)
  • 1 medium bunch kale, ribs removed and leaves shredded
  • 1/4 Tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup large, unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 2 cups cooked and chilled brown rice
  • 1 TBSP soy sauce
  • 2 TBSP Sriracha
  • 1 lime, halved and fresh cilantro, for garnish

Directions

Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon oil. Pour in the eggs and cook until lightly scrambled (or cook chicken pieces for about 3-5 minutes until no longer pink). Transfer the eggs (or chicken) to a large empty bowl.

Add 1 tablespoon oil to the pan and cook the garlic, green onions and brassica vegetables until tender, stirring frequently. Add the kale and salt. Continue to cook until the kale is wilted and tender, stirring frequently, for about 2 minutes. Transfer the contents of the pan to your bowl of eggs (or chicken).

Add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil to the pan. Pour in the coconut flakes and cook, stirring frequently, until the flakes are golden. Add the rice to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until the rice is hot, about 3 minutes.

Pour the contents of the bowl back into the pan. Add the soy sauce, sriracha and juice of 1/2 lime. Stir to combine.

Slice the remaining 1/2 lime into wedges, then divide the stir-fry into individual bowls. Garnish with wedges of lime and a sprinkling of torn cilantro leaves. Offer red pepper flakes and extra sriracha.

Parmesan Cauliflower Healthy New Year Recipes

Roasted Parmesan Cauliflower

  • 1 small head of fresh cauliflower (or any brassica veggie of your choice)
  • 2 -3 TBSP olive oil
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
  • fresh baby arugula for garnish

Directions

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Cut the cauliflower into 1/4 inch thick slices, then cut those slices into smaller bites. Combine olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Toss cauliflower slices in the olive oil mixture to coat. Spread cauliflower in a single layer on a baking sheet.

Bake in the preheated oven until browned, 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally in order to brown evenly. Remove from oven and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Return to the oven to allow the Parmesan cheese to brown, about 5 minutes. Serve immediately with baby arugula surrounding the plate.

Oyster Gardening

bayou vista oyster Oyster Gardening

Bayou Vista Resident Jeannie Kidwell pulls up her oyster bags with Galveston Bay Foundation’s Haille Carter and Michael Neibuhr. Photo: www.stockyard.com

Residents hang bags from their docks to spawn bi-valves

By Janice Van Dyke Walden

Good things happen over wine, and in this case, it was oyster gardening.  At a Wine Social last Spring, Bayou Vista resident Chris Roper suggested to her neighbors that they collectively cultivate oysters, right from their docks.  It’s a program that Galveston Bay Foundation started in 2010, and has been doing with success in Kemah and San Leon.

Fourteen residents signed up to help, and in June, they gathered at the Roper’s driveway on Blue Heron Drive to create the 5-pound bags.  In all, they assembled 25 bags.  Again, wine was the elixir. “We were bagging with oyster gardening in one hand and wine in the other,” says Chris.

With Galveston Bay’s oyster population at an all time low, beset every two years by silt, storms, low salinities or high salinities, Galveston Bay Foundation is enlisting communities to spawn their growth and shore up subsiding land.

Bayou Vista’s tightknit bay community is a perfect setting to try out the nursery program.  At the intersection of I-45 and Hwy 6 near Galveston, it’s built around a series of residential canals fed by Highland Bayou.  On the community’s southeast boundary lies a wetland fed by West Bay.  Residents hung bags from their docks both on the bayou-canal side and the wetland side to see where the oyster larvae, spat, would take hold starting in June.

•••

Six months later, on this last day of November, it’s time to collect the bags, check for spat, and move the bags to an oyster bar breakwater so they can mature.  We’re at the Roper’s residence, it’s a brilliantly clear afternoon, and the folks from Galveston Bay Foundation are curious to see what’s inside two ice chests at the Roper’s front door.  Hallie Carter, Galveston Bay Foundation’s Habitat Restoration Coordinator, and Michael Neibuhr, Program Technician, open the chests and remove the wet towels covering bags that neighbors have dropped off.  One bag, hung in the canal, shows no spats; the other, hung in the wetland, is full of spats.  Commenting on that neighbor’s results, Chris says, “We’ve had very little influx.  I’m not surprised that our water in the canal was not absolutely full of silt.  It was dark brown.  You couldn’t see anything.”

Unlike Chesapeake Bay, where oyster gardening has been going on for years, it’s not legal to seed oysters here.  In Texas, it has to happen naturally.  So, if communities want to build oyster populations, they have to set their bags in optimum conditions.  This first year at Bayou Vista is a telling example for future sites.

Jeannie Kidwell has just returned from Christmas shopping for her grandkids when she comes to her dock to help pull up her half-year effort.  “I was a Foster Parent,” she says.

Haille and Michael open her bags and the others on the Roper’s dock, sorting the shells, looking for spats.  “I’m amazed at what I see,” says Haille.  She’s finding spat on every 10 oysters.  Some shells are covered with three or more spat.

oyster spat Oyster Gardening

That’s a spat! The oyster gardening program is designed to spawn new oysters each year.

It will take two years for this spat to grow to the legal 3-inch-size oyster for harvesting.  But these will never be harvested.  Today they’re going into restricted waters off Galveston Bay Foundation’s 449-acre Sweetwater Preserve.  There, the oysters will build a breakwater for land quickly eroding at a rate of two feet each year.  The waters at the edge of this Galveston Island preserve connect to Bayou Vista’s wetland nursery.  “When we transport spat, we have to keep them in the same sub-bay system,” says Haille.  And, in this case, it’s West Bay.

The evening is closing in when we arrive at the Sweetwater Preserve to deposit the bags.  Near the water is a tall pile of oyster shells, a curing site for those collected from nearby restaurants.  So far, six Bay Area restaurants participate in the shell-recycling program.  They’ve been given 32-gallon collection bins that Galveston Bay Foundation retrieves and brings to the curing site on a weekly basis.  Michael led that effort for most of last year. “I’d visit Tookie’s the most, about three times a week,” he says.

Shells at the curing site will go into the 5-pound bags for the gardening program.  They also make up the 35-pound bags that form this and other breakwaters.  Since 2011, the program has collected 570 tons of shells.

As they set the bags in the reef, Haille talks about how the program will expand to Galveston Island in the next year.  “We‘ll partner with Gaidos and Cajun Greek, and continue our partnership with Texas A&M-Galveston with students picking up shells at those recycling sites and taking them to the curing sites.”

Oyster gardening is easy for families to do with their kids, and it’s a good way for kids to connect to their eco-system.  To get involved, contact:

Emily Ford | eford@galvbay.org

www.galvbay.org/get-involved/volunteer

Galveston Bay Webcams at Saltwater-Recon.com

causeway cam Galveston Bay Webcams at Saltwater Recon.com

The Galveston causeway cam at saltwater-recon.com

By Urs E. Schmid, President/CEO of www.saltwater-recon.com

By utilizing the latest technology in live, high definition, interactive web cameras, Saltwater-Recon.com is becoming the “Know Before You Go” resource for millions of people. Whether boating, fishing, or observing real-time conditions, Saltwater-Recon.com’s array of coastal HD cameras, combined with expert boating, fishing and weather content will give visitors the information needed to plan a safe and successful day on the water.

In addition to aiding the public with their decision-making, Saltwater-Recon.com aims to provide government entities, such as NOAA, U.S. Coast Guard, N.W.S., U.S. Army Corp. of Engineers, Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, as well as local news, and maritime logistics companies the information they need to make time-critical, and potentially life-saving, operational decisions.

It has been a long-time dream of ours to be able to look at the water from the comfort of our own home. Not everyone has the luxury of living close enough to the bay to be able to pop over and check out the water before an outing. Well, we have made that dream a reality.

With the help of our site sponsors and the Saltwater-Recon Team, CTO, Broc Adams and CFO, Larry Perez, (both BOI’s), we are using industry-leading, HD cameras that pan, tilt, and zoom with the click of a mouse to provide our users with the highest quality video stream, and YOU control the cameras! Our site allows the user to point the camera and even adjust how close they want to get with 30X zoom capabilities.

We currently have cameras in three locations; Trinity Bay, the Galveston Causeway and San Luis Pass. We are currently working on adding another three camera sites by the end of March 2017. New camera locations will include a Galveston beach cam, Seabrook and two cams at Seawolf Park to give users expansive views of the Galveston Ship Channel!

Along with our HD, interactive webcams, we also have some amazing bay/weather content including tide charts, access to weather/water information from NOAA buoys, weather radar and wind speed maps. We also have a full-time meteorologist on staff to bring our users the best, most up-to-date conditions of greater Galveston Bay.

We are also working on a very exciting new algorithm to bring bay conditions and weather forecasting into the 21st century. But that’s all we can say about that for now… please stay tuned to Saltwater-Recon.com and our Facebook page for updates on all the latest happenings and tournaments around the greater Galveston Bay complex through our EVENTS page, or check out the exclusive offers and coupons on our DEALS page.

We are excited for the opportunity to continually expand our network of cameras to bring real-time, reliable weather and bay conditions to anglers, boaters, and saltwater enthusiasts.

Going Skinny

Four small skiffs for fishing Texas marshes and backwaters

east cape caimen2 Going Skinny

east cape caimen Going Skinny

EAST CAPE CAIMEN

A little skiff with attitude. This boat is the perfect blend of beauty and function.  It can comfortably cross open bays and pole after tailing reds. It is one of the  most versatile boats in East Cape’s lineup. The Caimen is synonymous with simplicity.

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Length: 17’ 10”
  • Beam: 61.5”
  • Draft: 4”- 7” (Fully Rigged w/Two Anglers & Gear )
  • Recommended HP: 25-70

407.658.7933 | www.eastcapeskiffs.com

HELL’S BAY PROFESSIONAL

The Hell’s Bay Professional is a very versatile boat for fishing a wide variety of conditions. This skiff is the perfect blend of shallow water draft, dry comfortable ride and stability. The length to width ratio of the Professional allows for easy poling, responsive turning, and has the ability to handle a variety of water conditions. If stalking the shallow flats or fishing the backcountry is what you are after, then the Professional should be your skiff of choice.

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Length: 17’ 8”
  • Beam: 70”
  • Weight: 550 lbs
  • Draft: 4.5” (with engine/fuel)
  • Recommended HP: 60 – 90

321.383.8223 | www.hellsbayboatworks.com

SABINE SKIFFS VERSATILE

When Brian S. Little designed his first aluminum poling skiff he had one main design feature he wanted to accomplish; NO hull slap. Hull slap is created by waves hitting the boat at a less than desirable angle. The Versatile is designed and built to counteract the waves that cause fish spooking hull slap.

The Versatile is also designed to pole straight and allows the guide to spin the boat easily when needed. This shallow draft skiff, with a zero dead rise hull, offers a deck layout with storage for six 9’ 6” fly rods and walk-around gunnels you can actually walk around.

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Length: 17’ 6”
  • Beam: 78”
  • Recommended HP: 30 – 50

281-380-7304 | sales@ultralightboatworks.com | www.sabineskiffs.com

SHALLOW SPORT 15 CLASSIC

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Length: 15’
  • Beam: 86”
  • Dry Weight 650 lbs
  • Draft (rest): 6”
  • Draft (on plane): 3”
  • Fuel Capacity: 20 Gal.
  • Recommended HP: 90
  • Max Capacity: 3

POWER

956-233-9489 | www.shallowsportboats.com

Be sure to also check out skiffs and shallow draft boats from: