The first 2018 West Region trail tournament kicks off February 3 & 4 on Lake Amistad. This is two separate tournaments, one each day. Points will be awarded for each individual tournament. Make sure all of your National, State, and local club dues have been paid, and your B.A.S.S. Membership is current. You will be able to pay those dues and join the West Region at the tournament registration. The registration and meeting will be held, at the Ramada Inn of Del Rio, at 6:00 pm Friday evening Feb. 2nd. All of the tournament rules, format, and times will be discussed at the meeting. Entry fee is $75 for each tournament, this includes the “Big Bass” award also. There will be two official practice days prior to competition, Thursday Feb. 1 & Friday Feb. 2. The lake is off limits from sundown Sunday, January 28th until sunrise February 1st. For further information contact Kelley Hudson at 940-550-5638. We hope to see you there!
January 10, 2018 by Robert Montgomery (BASS Staff Writer)
MCQUEENEY, Texas – For new B.A.S.S. Nation (BN) state conservation directors who worry about whether they can handle the job, long-time Texas Conservation Director Tim Cook has some reassuring advice: Relax and go with the flow.
“It takes several years of service to really get on your feet,” said the owner of Cook Industrial Tool Inc. and father of two. “Learning what your priorities are is the first step.”
For Cook, a member of the Canyon Bass Club of San Marcos since 1988, a top priority is fish care above and beyond catch-and-release.
“Educating anglers about ways they can prevent delayed mortality is important,” he explained. “Catch-and-release is for nothing if the fish later dies after the tournament, so teaching livewell management, weigh-in procedures and live release management are all important.”
Other priorities for the Texas angler who has been conservation director since 2003 include habitat, aquatic invasive species and management of aquatic vegetation and fisheries.
Aquatic invasive species is heating up as an issue, mostly because of concerns about the spread of zebra mussels and giant salvinia, recently discovered on Lake Fork and other fisheries.
“By far, this is the number one issue I deal with in Texas,” Cook said. “Some invasive species like hydrilla can be tremendously beneficial to habitat. But when there are conflicts with other users, such as shoreline property owners, it’s important for anglers to have a voice in how management is implemented.”
A state conservation director must have a good working relationship with his or her state fisheries agency to have a voice in how the government deals with invasives, he added.
“Overreaction, such as lake closures and burdensome over-regulation, is a real threat to access,” he said, adding that educating anglers about exotic threats and the importance of “clean, drain and dry” also are important.
The most beneficial thing that he has done for the Texas BN, Cook believes, is to team up with Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD). “Developing trust and personal relationships is critical to being effective,” he added.
Cook serves on the Inland Fisheries advisory board, which the agency uses to get public input on proposals and programs. He also in on the TPWD Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame selection committee.
“Beyond these appointments, I have working relationships with key TPWD personnel statewide,” Cook said. “They know they can depend on and come to me when they have needs, and I can depend on them for honesty and answers.”
In 2013, that teamwork resulted in the TPWD and the Seven Coves Bass Club (SCBC) receiving the Texas Environmental Excellence Award for habitat work on Lake Conroe.
“This prestigious award was the result of the collaboration of many different organizations and the accomplishments of the Lake Conroe Aquatic Habitat Partnership,” explained the conservation director.
Ron Gunter, an SCBC member and assistant state conservation director, played a key leadership role in the project. “Ron has been a huge asset and helps me represent the B.A.S.S. Nation,” Cook said.
In 2014, meanwhile, the U.S. Department of the Interior awarded the Partners in Conservation Award to the Texas BN for its contributions to drafting the Edwards Aquifer Habitat Conservation Plan. The aquifer is the primary source of drinking water for more than 2 million people, and the aquatic habitat associated with it is home for eight endangered species.
“In Texas, water is more valuable than gold,” Cook said. “We had to represent a very diverse group of people.”
Along with continued emphasis on habitat, fish care and preventing the spread of invasive species, Cook wants to develop a conservation team.
“Texas is a big state and we need each club to have a conservation director, as well as each region,” he said. “I also plan to increase the use of social media to raise awareness of issues in our states and recognize clubs and individuals who do outstanding work.”
B.A.S.S. leadership continues to be responsive to conservation and fish care practices. They are requesting all States Nation organizations to start transitioning to the use of non-penetrating cull rings (NPCR). B.A.S.S. is applying the rule effective this year to the events they host, including the pro and open events.
The Texas B.A.S.S. Nation rules for 2018 will “suggest” the use of NPCR’s with a note in 2019 that NPCR’s will be mandatory at all Youth tournaments, Region qualifying tournaments and State sanctioned tournaments.
Texas B.A.S.S. Nation
DATE LAKE LAUNCH/MARINA
Qualifier #1 February 18, 2018 (Sunday) Lake LBJ Bluebriar Park (Granite Shoals)
Qualifier #2 March 17, 2018 (Saturday) Possum Kingdom South D & D Boat Ramp
Qualifier #3 April 22, 2018 (Sunday) Lake Conroe Lakeview Marina
Qualifier #4 May 05, 2018 (Saturday) Coleto Creek Coleto Creek Park
Qualifier #5 Sept 22, 2018 (Saturday) Lake Cedar Creek Log Cabin Boat Ramp
CHAMPIONSHIP Oct 27 – Oct 28, 2018 Lake Belton Temples Lake Park
Guaranteed 1st Place – $1000 (with a minimum field of 30 teams)
Entry Fee: $120.00 per Team, which includes Big Bass entry. (1 place paid for each 5 team entered and $20 per team Big Bass payout) Membership Fee: $25.00 each team member per year (If you are already a TX BASS Nation member, its $10.00 for each team member per year)
Texas B.A.S.S. Nation is excited to offer its membership another path to qualify for the BASSMASTER CLASSIC. Texas Team Championship Qualification is simple:
- Register and participate in one (1) Qualifier event and finish in the top 10 teams of that event, and your team is qualified for the Championship. (based upon a minimum of 20 teams at each Qualifier, any event with less than 20 teams – only the top 50% of that Qualifier event will qualify for the Championship)
- Register and participate in two (2) Qualifier events, and you are automatically qualified.
- Five (5) additional teams will qualify for the Championship from the overall point’s standings, if a team is already qualified, TBN will move down the point’s standings to obtain the final five (5) qualifying teams. Must fish a minimum of two (2) Qualifier events.
- Team of the Year – The team with the most points from three (3) Qualifiers, plus the Championship (double points), will be the 2018 Team of the Year. TBN will utilize the highest points from three (3) events + Championship to determine Team of the Year standings. (must fish a minimum of three (3) events, and if additional qualifiers are achieved, drops are allowed)
- Team of the Year is awarded “Free Entry” to three (3) Qualifiers of their choice in 2019, plaques, and website publicity!
- The Texas BASS Nation Team Championship is a two-day event, where the highest finishing team will earn the berth to the BASSMASTER Team Championship Event, with a minimum of 25-team field. For each sequential 25 teams competing during the 2018 Season, 1 additional team will earn a berth as well. (25 teams = 1st Place to National, 50 teams = 2nd Place to National, 75 teams = 3rd Place to National)
- Teams will be allowed to substitute a partner for (1) one qualifier event, only. All points will remain with the stated Boat Captain.
The BASSMASTER Team Championship is an entry-fee based National two-day event, where the top three (3) teams advance to the BASSMASTER Team Classic Event, which will be held the same week, following the BASSMASTER Team Championship. BASSMASTER will provide six (6) boats, whereby each individual will then compete. There is no entry fee to the final Classic Event, and no Payouts. The Champion wins a 2017 BASSMASTER CLASSIC entry. The benefits of Texas BASS Nation Membership are listed on the website. For more information, including the rules and entry forms, go to Texas B.A.S.S Nation Site @ http://www.texasbass.org/
2018 BASS Nation West Region Schedule
The West Region has finalized their 2018 tournament trail. They will begin with an annual tradition of heading south to Lake Amistad in February. To accommodate the “Top 6 Challenge” they will skip a few week and resume in late March with a trip to Lake Brownwood. April finds them returning to Hubbard Creek after a few missed years due to low water levels. In May they head for Lake LBJ and then conclude the season on O.H. Ivie Reservoir, lake levels permitting, if not Possum Kingdom Reservoir will be the alternate choice. Check out the attached link above or the West Region Tournament page for the dates and more detail.
We’ve revised the B.A.S.S. Club Handbook to better serve you and the other club members as an informational tool. Please take the time to familiarize yourself with
this handbook as it will help your club become organized and run efficiently.
As you look through this edition you will notice that it is packed with useful information, including the duties of club officers, ideas for club events, information about Bassmaster High School and the Junior Bassmaster Club program. We’ve included pertinent information regarding your club’s insurance coverage and the procedures to follow when admitting junior members into adult clubs. As in the past, the handbook includes forms, sample press releases, etc., which should be useful to you. Also, you can go to Bassmaster.com for additional information.
This handbook should answer many of your questions as a club member; however, the B.A.S.S. Nation staff is here to assist you in any way possible. Please don’t hesitate to give us a call.
B.A.S.S. Nation Director
The 2017 West Region Chamionship will be held October 21 & 22 on Lake Stillhouse. Headquarters is at the Temple Travel Lodge [254-773-7221] Mention Texas Bass Nation] There is a meeting that will be Friday night, Oct.20, 6:00 pm at Sol De Jalisco Mexican Restaurant just a couple of blocks south of the hotel. We have a meeting room reserved. Tournament rules and weigh in times will be announced there.The address for the meeting is 4201 S General Bruce Dr, Temple, TX. We will be launching out of Riversbend Park. Remember that the lake is off limits from this Sunday, Oct 15 sunset, till the official practice days [Thurs & Fri] Oct. 19 & 20 sunrise. Here are the first day pairings. These pairings could possibly change if someone doesn’t show up. As of right now the pairings are:
1. Kelley Hudson/Galen Weirehausen
2. Jim Brown/Jason Parsons
3. Troy Bryant/Barry Bennett
4. Noble Sessions/David Zak
5. Tom Enloe/Bobby Maynard
6. Ernie Kuehner/Bob Buchanan
7. Gary Friedel/