Paddle Report: Apache Hills Ramp, Somerville, TX

Paddle Report: Apache Hills Ramp, Somerville, TX

Summary: The Apache Hills launch is a large, clean ramp at the back of a neighborhood along the shores of a flood-ravaged Lake Somerville. It’s a popular spot for the friendly locals. The cove makes for a nasty paddle when the wind kicks up, but you can access some creeks and shoreline at the mouth of the cove for a sheltered paddle. Wildlife was surprisingly quiet when I went in mid-spring, but the scenery was beautiful when the sun saw fit to shine through moody clouds.

 

I’ve often overlooked Lake Somerville as a paddling destination due to what appears to be a lack of cover if it’s viewed from Google Maps. There is a lot of open water, but not much cover. Mother Nature made me the fool when I put this hypothesis to the test on April Fools’ Day in 2017.

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Paddle Report: Hugo Point Launch, Cove, TX

Paddle Report: Hugo Point Launch, Cove, TX

Summary: If you’re looking for a short paddle through sheltered waters with plenty of wildlife, I highly recommend launching at Hugo Point. If the weather permits, you can also venture into some of the surrounding, bigger waters for more marsh to discover. The safety and quality of the launch site at Hugo Point Park is top-notch, and you can enjoy a pleasant day on the water without worrying about coming back to your windows being broken.

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The Abbreviated Saga of Catfish the Selfbow

The Abbreviated Saga of Catfish the Selfbow

Catfish is an Osage selfbow. He originally pulled 43# at 27″, and was 67″ nock-to-nock. He was the first bow whose back I exposed from a stave. He taught me to pull the drawknife slowly or risk ruining the ring I’m chasing. He has proven himself as a successful bowfishing bow. He bears the burden of a beginner’s poor tiller like a champ. And he shines up well to boot.

But he’s also a bit of a butthead.

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The Gar in the Grove

The Gar in the Grove

It’s 7:00 AM on July 5th and already 90 degrees. My thoughts are as foggy as the air hovering over the open waters of Toledo Bend, cloaking the distant shores of Louisiana miles away. Fleeting memories of the Independence Day celebration from the night before remind me why I feel the way I do. Beneath me the kayak slightly wobbles, and the movement is magnified in my gut. Nonetheless, I am determined to shoot the breakfast I spotted from the pier at first light.

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