Archive for the 'river access' Category

New Lease Agreements = Angler Access

Wednesday, January 31st, 2018
Great fishing along the Guadalupe below Canyon Dam

Great fishing along the Guadalupe below Canyon Dam

This is Passport to Texas

Thanks to new agreements between Texas Parks and Wildlife and private landowners, anglers have easier access to The Canyon Reservoir Tailrace—one of the top trout fishing destinations in the United States.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department leased four access areas from private landowners along this coveted stretch of water, located below Canyon Reservoir on the Guadalupe River.

Stephan Magnelia, TPWD River Studies Program Director, said: “This portion of the Guadalupe River is a popular trout fishery and is likely the most fished reach of river in Texas.”

By leasing prime fishing locations from private landowners Parks and Wildlife provide anglers with a unique trout fishing experience in Central Texas.

Through late spring, the “no fee” leases give anglers the opportunity for bank and wade fishing – as well as put-in and take out areas for kayaks and paddling equipment.

Texas Parks and Wildlife will continue to stock the Canyon Reservoir Tailrace with thousands of rainbow trout each week through late-January.

Visit the Texas Parks and Wildlife website for the locations of the new access points along Canyon Reservoir Tailrace, and the full list of trout stocking dates.

The Sport Fish restoration program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

2018 Resolutions for Anglers

Wednesday, December 27th, 2017
Fishing at Padres Island National Seashore. Image originally appeared in Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine.

Fishing at Padres Island National Seashore. Image originally appeared in Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine.

This is Passport to Texas Resolutions Week

When I asked Karen Marks and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Aquatic Education team if they had any New Year resolutions for anglers that they’d like to share with me, they did, and boiled them down to three little words:

Learn. Fish. Teach.

Learn to be safe on or near the water. Understand weather and water currents, and how to safely use your gear. Learn how to hold and release fish safely for you and the fish. Most of all, learn about aquatic invasive species and how as an angler you can prevent their spread.

Fish. Get outside and go fish. Buy a licenses and follow all regulations. It’s free to fish at state parks with fishing opportunities. Use established trails to access shoreline, and pick up litter along the way. Leave every area better than you found it. And invite family and friends to join you; don’t be surprised when they jump at the chance.

That brings us to teach. Volunteer at a local fishing event, help a scout group, volunteer with Parks and Wildlife or with a local veteran fishing organization like Heroes on the Water and Project Healing Waters.

Moreover, consider becoming a certified TPWD Angler Education instructor. Share your knowledge, skills and proper attitudes towards our fishing heritage, and help create a brighter future for freshwater and saltwater fishing in Texas.

The Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti

Texas River Access

Thursday, May 25th, 2017
Tom Birdsong enjoying river access.

Tom Birdsong enjoying river access.

This is Passport to Texas

Legal access to Texas Rivers can be challenging.

Texas is a private land state. Over 95% of the land in the state is privately owned, and that’s reflected in ownership of banks along rivers.

Tim Birdsong is a rivers biologist. Texas Parks and Wildlife’s paddling trails program works with communities to create access to some of the 191,000 miles of Texas Rivers. Currently, we have 70 trails in the system.

Seventy trails, 191,000 miles of rivers—that’s a drop in the bucket. There are lots of high quality river segments that aren’t accessible because of this preponderance of private lands ownership. So, we look for opportunities to bring landowners into the mix, and provide a win-win scenario where we can provide a cost share arrangement; provide payments to landowners to lease private lands for public access to rivers. And this is real similar to our public hunting program that we’ve had in place for years.

This partnership with local landowners allows Texans to more fully enjoy the natural beauty that our rivers have to offer.

We began leasing these private lands for access to bank, wade and kayak fishing in 2012. And now, we’re up to 19 different lease-access sites statewide on 10 different rivers.

Texas Parks and Wildlife seeks landowners with riverfront property strategically positioned to expand current Texas Padding Trails, connect to parks, or provide connections to other public river access areas. Find program details on the TPW website.

The Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Working Together for River Access

Thursday, May 11th, 2017
Chandler River park lot.

Chandler River Park. New parking lot for anglers so they have better access to the water. Image from East Texas Woods and Water.

This is Passport to Texas

Chandler River Park on the Neches River is a model for public/private partnerships that provide free access to our state’s rivers, which can sometimes be hard to find.

It’s certainly going to be the model that I’m going to use in the future.

Beginning in 2012, Richard Ott, an inland fisheries biologist based in Tyler, worked with a diverse group of public and private organizations to lease and develop the site.

It was complete in 2013. We then were able to get some additional grants to improve the boat ramp on the south side of the bridge. And then in 2016, with another grant, we were able to put in a kayak launch. So, we’ve also got that as one of our paddling trail locations. So, it’s a really multi-functional location.

East Texas Woods and Water paid for the site’s 20 year lease, says Ott. And TxDOT created safe parking and road improvements. Texas Parks and Wildlife develops sites based on angler input.

This was a location that traditionally anglers had concentrated, and fished on the banks, on all four sides of the bridge. And once we located where the anglers and the fish interfaced, we knew that was where we wanted to develop these access sites.

Find out where Texas Parks and Wildlife has agreements with landowners that allow public fishing and boating access through private property, on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

The Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

TPW Magazine – Gently Down the Stream

Wednesday, March 1st, 2017
Paddling in  Texas

Paddling in Texas

This is Passport to Texas

Photo-journalist, Camille Wheeler, grew up in a farming and ranching family in West Texas, and remains a country girl at heart, despite living in the Capital City since the mid-1990s.

I didn’t grow up around very much water. So, while I was a country girl, I’ve always had a fascination with rivers and streams.

Given her fascination for flowing water, she wondered why she’d never explored Austin’s Lady Bird Lake.

So, about a year ago [in January], I went out—really for the first time by myself—on a kayak, on Lady Bird Lake. And the lake was just filled with all these wintering birds. And the double crested cormorant is one of my favorite birds in the world. There were so many of them, and I could paddle up close to them and take pictures. And I was like: Why have I not been doing this?

She discovered Lady Bird Lake is in Texas Parks and Wildlife’s Paddling Trails Program, which gave her an idea for an article. She shared the idea with TPW magazine’s editor, and the agency’s nature tourism manager.

We came up with this idea of me traveling around the state as a beginner [paddler] who has medium knowledge of birds, and putting the two things together for readers.

Read about it in the March issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine. On tomorrow’s show: how Camille Wheeler found the middle of nowhere in the middle of everywhere on an urban paddling trail.

That’s our show for today… Funding provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram

For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.