Outdoors Digest

By Lynn Burkhead
For the Herald Democrat


Through Oct. 31 – Oklahoma dove season.

Through Nov. 6 – Texas early archery deer season.

Through Nov. 12 – First split of Texas North Zone dove season.

Through Jan. 15 – Oklahoma archery deer season.

Oct. 20 – 45th annual Texoma Ducks Unlimited fundraising dinner.

Oct. 24-Nov. 1 – Oklahoma primitive arms / muzzleloading deer season.

Oct. 31-Feb. 28 – Texas quail season.

Nov. 7-8 – Texas North Zone youth-only duck season.

Nov. 7-Jan. 3 – Texas North Zone general whitetail deer season.

Nov. 7-Jan. 3 – General whitetail deer season in Grayson County with means and methods of harvest restricted to lawful archery and crossbow gear.

Nov. 12 – Bryan County Ducks Unlimited Dinner at the Choctaw Events Center near Durant.


  The Archery Trade Association announced earlier this week that the 2021 ATA Trade Show has been cancelled in early January, moving to a virtual event instead. For more details, visit Bowhunter magazine’s website at www.bowhunter.com or Petersen’s Bowhunting website at www.bowhuntingmag.com …TPWD has announced that its Law Enforcement office locations have now reopened to the public and that appointments are no longer required, except at the Austin Headquarters. According offices will be open during regular business hours, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday…Brandon Palaniuk continues to impress and make his claim for being one the top professional bass anglers on the planet. Palaniuk took home the Bassmaster Elite Series title last weekend by weighing a four-day total of  72 pounds, 2 ounces for the win at Santee Cooper Lakes. In capturing his fifth Elite Series triumph—and his second of the season after an earlier 2020 win at Lake Champlain—Palaniuk used a 22-pound, 11-ounce bag limit on Sunday to overcome a 1-pound, 3-ounce deficit and capture the $100,000 top prize over runner-up Carl Jocumsen, the Australian-born Frisco resident who finished at 64-02…The Elite Series continues this weekend with the Oct. 16-19 event on Chickamauga Lake in eastern Tennessee. Meanwhile, the B.A.S.S. Nation circuit will have it’s Central Regional event from Oct. 14-16 on Toledo Bend on the Texas/Louisiana border…                                                                                    

Hunting Reports

  Dove numbers have dwindled in Texomaland with the shortening days and occasional cool fronts. If you’re still looking for a limit of doves fresh supplies of birds can arrive from the north as cool fronts keep pushing through the area and turning the wind to the north…It’s getting dry enough now in the Red River Valley area that dove hunters might start thinking about hunting a waterhole for an evening limit…There’s no word on the local bowhunting front as the October archery season enters its second week. Warm weather and little need for deer to move is limiting daylight movement….If you have an archery hunting permit for one of this fall’s bowhunts at Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge, keep in mind that you must either complete an online, virtual orientation meeting or complete the requirement through an e-mailed document. For more information, contact refuge personnel during business hours…

Fishing Reports

  At Lake Texoma, water is lightly stained; water temp is 75 degrees; and the lake is 3.42 low. TPWD reports that striped bass and white bass are excellent on live bait, slabs, and topwater baits when fish are near the surface. Diving birds are marking feeding schools on the surface throughout the lake. As usual, use electronics to find schools along the river channel and flats when no surface feeding or bird action is present. Largemouth bass are good fishing Texas-rigged plastic worms and crankbaits in 16-28’ of water. Some fish are moving into shallow water in the 8-12’ range, so some shallow water options exist. Crappie are fair on minnows and jigs fished by boathouses, near timber, and over brush piles in 15-25’ of water...At Lake Ray Roberts, site of the 2021 Bassmaster Classic, water is lightly stained; water temp is 75 degrees; and the lake is 0.51 low. TPWD reports that largemouth bass are good on purple or dark blue Texas-rigged plastic worms, crankbaits, and white spinnerbaits in 16-26’ of water near timber, rip rap, and channel edges. There is also an early and late topwater bite, particularly on wind-driven points. White bass are good in 20-40’ depths on white or chartreuse slabs and white bladed jigs fished near main lake points, slopes, and drop-offs. Crappie are fair on minnows in brush piles between 18-28' of water...At Lake Fork, water is lightly stained; water temp is 74 degrees; and the lake is 1.83 low. TPWD reports that largemouth bass are fair on Shakyheads, finesse worms, and skirted jigs fished near heavy timber, roadbeds, brushy points, and rocky shorelines. Crappie are fair on minnows in 18-25’ foot-deep brush piles and standing timber near creek ledges or drop-offs...While tropical activity has kept coastal tides higher than normal, the fall flounder bite continues to be good according to TPWD...At Sabine Lake, flounder will be along the shoreline and in the shop channel and are good on mud minnows...At Bolivar, flounder will be found around the rocks and are good on minnow...At West Galveston Bay, flounder are good in back marshes...At Freeport, flounder are good along the drains on mullet...

Tip of the Week

  Don’t forget to make plans to attend the 45th annual Texoma Ducks Unlimited fundraising dinner next Tuesday, Oct. 20 at the Hilton Garden Inn Events Center in Denison. The event has limited ticket numbers due to COVID-19 restrictions, so get your tickets early. For information, contact a Texoma committee member or visit www.ducks.org.