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Robert Montgomery

Why We Fish

Fish, Frogs, and Fireflies

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Sunday
Apr222018


Sunday
Apr222018

YETI Drops NRA Foundation

It will be interesting to see how this plays out. I suspect that YETI will regret this decision. It has just alienated a huge number of outdoorsmen and women who use its products. In the name of political correctness, it bowed to a vocal minority of gun control advocates.

From the NRA:

 For years YETI Coolers have been a hot item for sportsmen at the Friends of NRA Foundation Banquet and Auction events around the country.  

These Foundation events raise money to support youth programs and educational programs nationwide. The youth of America who benefit from these programs are the future hunters, hikers, fishermen/women, bikers, campers, wildlife photographers, mountain climbers, sportsmen/women and conservationists who will protect our natural resources and recreational lands. 

Suddenly, without prior notice, YETI has declined to do business with The NRA Foundation saying they no longer wish to be an NRA vendor, and refused to say why.  They will only say they will no longer sell products to The NRA Foundation.  That certainly isn't sportsmanlike. In fact, YETI should be ashamed.  They have declined to continue helping America's young people enjoy outdoor recreational activities.  These activities enable them to appreciate America and enjoy our natural resources with wholesome and healthy 
outdoor recreational and educational programs.


The NRA Foundation is 501(c)(3) non-profit, charitable organization.

In this day and age, information is power.  We thought you needed this information. 

 *     *     *     *

Following the mass shooting in Parkland, Fla., on Feb. 14, these companies also have cut ties with the NRA:  First National Bank of Omaha, Delta Airlines, United Airlines, Avis, Hertz, Alamo, Enterprise, National Rental Car, Starkey Hearing Technologies, MetLife, TrueCar and SimpliSafe.

Sunday
Apr222018

'Bad' Weather

Not surprisingly, raging storms account for some of my most vivid memories. Perhaps at the top of the list is the time I watched softball-size hail pound down, only to bounce 10 or 15 feet into the air. Yes, it caused all kinds of damage to homes and cars, including my own. Yet I felt privileged to see what most people haven’t and never will: the spectacular consequence of updrafts pushing hailstones back up through thunderclouds until they grew to almost four inches in diameter, before pelting the Earth with a fury that seems almost—but is not— malevolent.

Yes, indeed, weather can be dangerous. But it isn’t “bad.” Weather is what it is: A meteorological symphony orchestrated by nature and a reminder that, as much as we would like to think otherwise, we are not in control around here.

I love “bad weather,” as long as I’m not in danger from a tornado or hurricane. I love the crack of thunder and the flash of lightning. I love snow that blows sideways and ice pellets that rattle off the windows. I love the showy side of nature. And, even though I’m not a student or a teacher anymore, I still feel a little tingle of joy when I hear snow days announced on the radio. Maybe there’s something to that Pavlov theory after all.

Excerpt from Fish, Frogs, and Fireflies: Growing Up With Nature. Photos are mine, as was the decked crunched by huge branch from an old oak tree.

Friday
Apr202018

Decisions. Decisions. I think that I'll just buy all three.

Friday
Apr202018

Powerful Opposition Kills Public Access Reform In Louisiana

A bill that would have restored anglers’ rights to access public waters in Louisiana was voted down in the state legislature this week by a vote of 37-59.

Proponents of House Bill 391, including B.A.S.S., the Louisiana B.A.S.S. Nation and the Louisiana Sportsmen’s Coalition (LaSC), were disappointed but not surprised at the loss, said Gene Gilliland, national conservation director for B.A.S.S.

“Everyone knew going in that this was likely to be a contentious issue and that it might take several years to find a good fix,” he explained. “When the vote came to the full House of Representatives, wealthy landowners and energy companies with deep pockets and armies of lobbyists persuaded legislators from many parts of Louisiana that are not even affected by this issue to vote against the bill.”

Gilliland said the bill’s author, Rep. Kevin Pearson (R., Slidell), told him his bill was perhaps the most talked about piece of legislation in this session, and although it was voted down, it raised awareness of the problem statewide.

HB 391 would have restricted the ability of private landowners to prohibit boater access to navigable waters flowing over or through their lands. Almost alone among the 50 states, Louisiana permits private property owners in tidewater areas to bar public access to those waters and to do so without posting them against trespassing.

“Almost everywhere else, the law says that, ‘If you can float it, you can boat it,’” Gilliland pointed out.

“Louisiana is one of the only states in the nation where you can be traveling by boat on public, navigable waterways, and suddenly with no warning find that you are not,” according to the LaSC. “As a result, families out for a day of fun have been subjected to armed challenges from guards hired by big landowners and told to leave the unmarked, seemingly open water.”

Because of the inconsistencies in access, B.A.S.S. announced last year that it would no longer conduct professional bass tournaments in Louisiana’s tidal regions, including the Louisiana Delta, which has hosted four Bassmaster Classics, and others where public access is being increasingly restricted. In the upcoming Bassmaster Elite at the Sabine River out of Orange, Texas, competitors have been told they cannot fish in Louisiana waters.

Gilliland said Pearson made it clear that B.A.S.S.’s decision to stay away from Louisiana until this issue is resolved played a major role in raising awareness among the public and his fellow legislators.

“Although the bill is dead for this year, Rep. Pearson is fully committed to making a run at this issue again next year,” Gilliland said. “We hope that prior to next year’s session there will be meetings of all the concerned stakeholders, including B.A.S.S. and the Louisiana B.A.S.S. Nation.

“We want to build a consensus on how public access to the waters of Louisiana can be preserved for recreation and commerce, while respecting landowners’ rights.”

The LaSC said in a statement this week that it is encouraged by the fact that 37 state representatives voted for the reform despite “powerful opposition” and little time to prepare for a legislative push.
 
It added, “This was always going to be a multi-year fight, and we are optimistic that the progress made in this year’s legislative session has moved up the expected timeline.”