HOOD OUTDOORS

As a licensed professional fishing guide, Michael Acosta shows you how to find them. A Granbury resident of more than 35 years, he has been fishing all of his life, and has been a licensed guide since 1998.

The weather is warming up fast and the amount of boats on our area lakes is forever increasing.  We need to be courteous and safe on the water. 

Every year there are many unnecessary deaths on the water.  Please be safe and maintain safe distances from other boaters and make sure you have all safety gear on board.  For you new boaters, familiarize yourself with the boating regulations and consider taking the Texas Parks and Wildlife boating classes.  Experienced boaters should not get too comfortable, as you need to be aware as well.  As you might have guessed, this article today is on safe boating tips.

There needs to be a life jacket on board for every person in the boat and you must have an approved throw device.  Children under 13 must wear a life jacket at all times when the boat is moving.  These life jackets, if not worn, must be readily accessible.  If you are stopped by the game warden and have trouble getting them out, you may get a ticket.

Of course you must have a paddle on board in the event of a failure of the motor, and your horn must be in working order.  Ensure your fire extinguisher is accessible and in good order.  It is always a good idea to keep a first-aid kit on board and a radio or cell phone for emergencies.

If your boat is equipped with a kill switch, this needs to be attached to the driver when the big motor is in use.

If you are going to pull skiers, you need a rear-view mirror and if possible a second person watching the skier as you are driving.  This goes for tubing and any other pull toy.

When approaching another boater on the water, stay to the right if possible.  You must maintain 50 feet from any other watercraft on most bodies of water.  On Lake Granbury, 100 feet is enforced.   Anchored boats have the right over other moving boats.  Pleasure boaters should maintain their distance from fishing boats.  There are a lot of curious boaters/jet skiers that drive up close to people fishing, not realizing that their motor may spook the fish that they are trying to catch.  This is just plain common courtesy.

Lake Granbury is a public place.  The fishermen and pleasure boaters all have every right to be there as long as they obey the laws.  Property owners of waterfront property do not own the water by their property.  Landowners and fishermen need to be courteous to each other and enjoy our public waters.  Boaters need to watch for those “no wake” zones.

Watch the weather before you head out.  High winds on the water can be dangerous, especially for smaller craft.  Lightning is probably the most dangerous of all.  If you see a storm approaching, get off the water as soon as you can.  If you are going to be out in the sun, make sure you have plenty of sunscreen, for obvious reasons.

Be courteous on the ramp launching your boat.  Do not block the launch while getting your boat ready.  First get your boat ready to launch then take the boat to the ramp to launch. 

Do not drink alcohol while operating the boat.  The penalties are stiff and you are endangering others on the lake.  

Be safe and enjoy our beautiful lake.  See you all on the water!

HOOD COUNTY

FISHING REPORT

Water temperatures on most area lakes are back up close to 70 degrees.  The Lake Granbury fishing slowed some this past week with the cooler temperatures, but are sure to rebound.  Crappie catches continue to be good in the shallows on many areas of the lake.  White bass are returning to the main lake and can be found on many humps and flats from the city beach area to the DeCordova Bend subdivision.  Striped bass are fair on live bait fished from the Shores to Striper Alley.  Blue, yellow and channel catfish catches continue to be good on cut bait fished on the upper ends.  Largemouth bass to 7 pounds are good on soft plastics in the back of sloughs and creeks and near main lake points. 

OTHER AREAS

On other reservoirs, Lake Whitney striped bass to 12 pounds are possible on live bait fished from McCown to Cedar Creek.  Lake Whitney largemouth bass are good to excellent to 8 pounds fished in the back of major creeks.  Lake Proctor sand bass and hybrid striped bass are good near Sowell Creek.

michael.acosta@att.net | 254-396-4855