Here is a photo of David Nance of Claremore and the non-typical buck that he arrowed in Pawnee County.
The buck has a preliminary score of 200 3/4 after deductions.
Here is a photo of Ronny Lambeth of Edmond and the big buck he harvested off the McAlester Army Ammunition Plant.
The buck, named the “Ace of Spades” by wildlife biologists on the plant, has a preliminary score of 197 2/8.
The new North Point Recreation Area will open next week at Lake Stanley Draper, complete with a new fishing pier, boat ramp, picnic shelters, volleyball courts and walking paths.
Included in the development are two new parking lots, a new playground, two volleyball courts, three picnic shelters, a walking patch with additional picnic areas and an American Disabalities Act-accessible fishing pier and courtesy dock.
“Lake Stanley Draper is one of our untapped recreation jewels,” said Wendel Whisenhunt, Parks and Recreation Director.
The area will open to users beginning next Tuesday following a ceremony. Regular hours will be 5 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Beginning Oct. 31, the three picnic shelters will be available for citizens to rent through the Oklahoma City Parks and Recreation Department. Rates are $ 20 for the first two hours and $5 for each additional hour. A refundable deposit of $100 is also required during the off-season from Oct. 31 – April 15.
The North Point (Pt. 10) Recreation Area is located on the north side of Lake Stanley Draper and is accessible from Douglas Boulevard. New stone entry portals at the Douglas exit greet visitors as they come into the lake road.
Additional signage directs visitors to the new recreation area, located approximately ¼ mile east of Douglas, at Point 10.
The total project cost was $2.39 million, with primary funding coming from the 1995 and 2000 General Obligation Bonds.
The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation and the Federal Aid Sport Fishing Restoration Program have approved more than $500,000 in grant funds to assist with the project.
The grant money is dedicated to the new boat ram, courtesy dock, fishing pier and access road.
State wildlife officials still haven’t resumed putting rainbow trout in the Lower Illinois River below Tenkiller Dam, saying the water temperature remains too warm.
They had hoped by mid-October the water would have cooled enough to resume stocking the river with trout.
“Temperatures need to be 65 degrees or lower in the tailrace during power generation before regular stockings can begin again,” said Gary Peterson of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation.
No trout has been added to the stream since Aug. 12. Anglers are still having success at the Lower Illinois River catching largemouth bass on topwater lures in the backwaters and weed beds.
Striped bass fishing is good on cut bait and catfishing is fair on cut bait along the bottom of the river.
With the temperatures cooling off, the striper action on the Red River has been heating up again. Fishing guide Norman O’Neal reports big stripers have been slamming 8 to 12 inch shad below the Denison dam.
“I have been catching them with the water running and it is extremely fast action,” O’Neal said.
To reach O’Neal, call (903) 624-4900.
On Sunday, I wrote a column about Rose State College history professor Jim Hochtritt’s poor bass fishing in the Oklahoma City urban “Close to Home” waters.
State wildlife officials say money is the primary reason the bass fishing is so poor in the urban ponds and small lakes, which are primarily stocked with channel cats and bluegills.
Bass is too expensive to raise and stock in the ponds.
Hochtritt is not buying the “party line,” however, and had this to say about the state Wildlife Department’s response to his complaint.
“First, every single one of the Close to Home lakes has a sign that indicates that they have been stocked with largemouth bass, catfish, and sunfish or perch (I cannot recall the term they used for the panfish). They also indicate that the policy is catch and release for the bass. But according to Mr. Gilliland the lakes are “for the most part” home to channel cats and blues. He said that bass are rarely put in the ponds and in some cases the habitat is not there. Well, gee. Then why doesn’t someone create the habitat if they are going to the trouble of putting up a sign that says bass are in the lakes. What logic!Secondly, he claims that it costs about $4 to grow a largemouth bass to 12 inches. Why do the bass have to be 1 pound fish? Why can’t fingerling bass be placed in the ponds and lakes? They would probably die and survive at the same rates that natural fingerlings die and survive. And I can’t believe that a fingerling costs $4 but maybe so. I will have to check into the matter.Moreover, once a healthy bass population is put in a “catch and release” lake or pond, they will self-produce and since most people are too impatient to fish for bass on lakes that get a lot of fishing pressure and such, the ponds and lakes would become self-regenerating like the urban ponds I fished in the San Francisco Bay Area, smack dab in the middle of urban sprawl and congestion. They have had a nice bass population since I was a kid and I’m 55! And they are not, ever stocked, except for the occasion when they had to repair a dam and drain a lake.
I do agree with the bills he says have not gone anywhere. I know that people fight for every little piece of the pie and seeing that local ponds and lakes have healthy fish populations is probably not a high priority.
At the same time, that type of thinking is what discourages me about Oklahoma City. I have lived here for 17 years and I love this state and area very much, but at times, it fails to understand basic quality of life issues. All one has to do is see the lack of well-kept parks, bike trails, green urban spaces, sidewalks, and such, to understand that.
Eagle Lake in Del City is a prime example. It is a nice body of water. It has great fish habit in numerous places. There are catfish, bluegill, spotted gar, and, ah um, bass in it, but it is, I am sure, underfunded, and obviously not a top priority.
If the city cared about fixing it up or if the county did, it could be turned into a beautiful urban space with a paved walking trail around the whole lake, shore access around the whole lake, and green lawns and picnic areas.
Instead, it is garbage strewn, fairly dicey park at certain times of the day, and attracts the kind of people who do not care about themselves much less the park. It is, by all standards, a dump, but I fish it and catch nothing on a fairly regular basis because it is convenient and close to home. I look at a space like that and think, this is the mindset of Oklahoma. In almost any other city or state, that lake would be pretty instead of an eyesore.
Midwest Regional Park is a classis example of something done right. Years ago, there was not much there, but the city has spent a lot of time and effort fixing that place up and now, surprise of surprises, it is used on a regular basis by all kinds of people. It’s a beehive of activity from morning until evening.
People get very excited about a pro-basketball franchise, and deservedly so, but other amenities in the metro area are sadly lacking. Quality of life means many things, and just claiming to be a major league city because we have a NBA franchise is rather short-sighted.
Since living here, I have always found it highly ironic that I am in the “country,” if you will, and yet I had better places to fish in the San Francisco Bay Area or I can find better places to fish in the suburbs of St. Louis. All I can do is shake my head and laugh.”
The Wall Street Journal had an interesting story today on female hunters, which has gained attention since the vice-presidential nomination of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who is a big game hunter and supposedly knows how to field dress a moose.
While the overall number of hunters have declined in the last 15 years, female hunters have slightly increased. The story chronicled how female hunters are now taken seriously by those in the outdoors industry.
One of the women interviewed in the Wall Street Journal story was Beth Ann Amico, who operates Deep Fork Retrievers in Choctaw with her husband, John.
Amico pointed out how outdoor manufacturers once assumed that slapping pink on such things as weapons and camo would get women to buy their products.
“Initially, their attitude was pink it and shrink it and women will buy,” Amico said. “We’re savvier than that.”