Deer Season In Full Swing




The leaves are dropping and the mornings have that familiar chill in the air, which means for a lot of hunters that deer season is in full swing. Across Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana and Tennessee, hunters are hitting woods and fields in the dark to try and chase that monster buck.

For deer hunters, it’s a familiar routine – hiking under starlight, watching first light break while sitting in the stand, warming up with coffee, paying close attention to the wind, moon and weather. Opening day is right up there with Christmas morning. There are many different styles of hunting and hunters, ranging from mountain archers to hardwood bottom muzzleloaders and open range snipers.

If you don’t bag your goal early in the season, then the hardcore hunters rise to the task of dedicated repetition. By December the insanity starts to set in… why am I doing this? Going out in all weather, over and over, countless dozens of hours logged in pursuit of what seems like a ghost. You see sign all over, you have pictures from the game camera, you may have even seen the deer you’re after with your very own eyes but not had the opportunity to take him. It seems like it’s never going to pan out for you, until that one frosty morning where he slips up and gives you the opportunity. Or he doesn’t, and he lives to scratch out a living for another year while you dream about him every night.

This is deer hunting. Sometimes the game comes to you – literally and figuratively – and you have a solid harvest on opening weekend. Other times it’s the toil and grind, putting in the work, the hours, and the miles. Sometimes all of that work pays off late in the season, which is one of the most rewarding experiences a hunter can have. Other times, you get skunked. As they say, it’s called “hunting” not “killing”. But that tenacity is what it takes to be a hunter, regardless of results.

“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night” is a creed associated with the USPS letter carriers, but I think us hunters can adopt that creed as well. For those determined beyond weather, pain, cold or soreness, to those driving and hiking in the dark when everyone is still dreaming in Neverland, to those who can’t feel their fingers or toes by daybreak, I raise my travel coffee mug and salute you.





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Toledo Bend Lake Weather Forecast

Wednesday

Sunny

Hi: 56

Wednesday Night

Mostly Clear

Lo: 38

Thursday

Partly Sunny

Hi: 59

Thursday Night

Partly Cloudy

Lo: 44

Friday

Mostly Cloudy

Hi: 74

Friday Night

Mostly Cloudy

Lo: 62

Saturday

Chance Rain Showers

Hi: 75

Saturday Night

Chance Rain Showers

Lo: 53


Toledo Bend Lake Water Level (last 30 days)


Water Level on 11/30: 167.97 (-4.03)



Toledo Bend Lake

Fishing Report from TPWD (Nov. 30)

GOOD. Water stained; 59 degrees; 4.25 feet low. GOOD. The water level is 167.7 with no generators running. Water temperature at the Dam is 59 degrees. The back feeder creeks are stained and muddy with lots of Fall leaves floating on the surface, and the main lake remains clear. We were blessed with some rain this week 2-3 inches. Not much has changed on the pattern this week. Chatter baits are still producing in 3/8 to 3/4 ounce white, chartreuse, watermelon pepper, and red/black skirts. To cover a lot of water, use a square bill crank bait or a flat side crank bait and smaller rattle traps from 0-8 feet in shad and perch imitation colors and the Rayburn red traps are still working. For deeper Bass, cast a Carolina rig with a worm or lizard. Jigging spoons are still producing quality bass on 1/2 to 3/4 ounce (silver with a white or yellow accent tail feather or a deep diving crank bait in citrus shad and Tennessee shad colors). The jig and pig bite has been strong. Cast your jig to long tapering points that drop off into deep water, the best colors are black and blue, PB&J football jigs 3/8 - 3/4 ounce with a 3-inch matching color craw trailer, and a green pumpkin jig with a chunk style trailer. The Crappie bite is still good in 12-20 feet on the edge of the river channels using 1/16- and 3/32-ounce Wager Baits, #46 Bluegrass, #3 Monkey Milk, #09 Electric Chicken, #10 Black and Chartreuse and small minnows depending on the cloud cover and cooling night temperatures. Now that the lake is at a Winter drawdown, it's prime time to go out scouting for new areas for Springtime fishing. Look for areas like feeder creeks, ditches, man-made structures, creek bends and undercuts, etc. Reminder: Keep and extra set of clothes in a dry bag stowed away on your vessel just in case you get caught in the rain, heavy winds, etc. Hypothermia happens quickly. Good luck and keep casting forward! Report from Master Captain Steve “Scooby” Stubbe, Mudfish Adventures LLC, Orv

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