Ray Sasser: Archers appear to be growing in number

Archery season for white-tailed deer, mule deer and Rio Grande turkeys begins Saturday and continues through Nov. 6. It’s hard to know how many archery hunters are out there, in spite of the fact that they must pay a $7 stamp endorsement to take advantage of the early season.

Local Schedule

Ray Sasser: Old-timers share love of good bird dogs

MIAMI, Texas — Delmar Smith and T. Boone Pickens have a lot in common. Both are Oklahoma natives, and both men have a reverence for good bird dogs. Not just bird dogs — good bird dogs, canine Geiger counters that sift the often dusty air for the subtle aroma of America’s finest game bird.

North Texas Karters

North Texas Karters

Ray Sasser: Tips for deer rifle accuracy, safety

The firearms deer season doesn’t begin until Nov. 7, and that leaves plenty of time to visit a nearby shooting range and make certain your deer rifle shoots where it’s supposed to shoot.

Ray Sasser: Spinning-wing decoy worth price

After the best opening-day mourning dove hunt we’ve seen in a while, my wife, Emilie, and I wound up on a pretty slow second-day hunt. Luckily, we had our mojo working.

Ray Sasser: Don’t scrimp on dove ammo

Several thousand shotgun shells have been fired since dove season started Tuesday in most of Texas. Even more will be shot up this weekend. If the 70-day season goes well, Texas hunters will bag about 5 million doves with 25 million shots — about a million boxes of shotgun shells.

North Texas Karters

Krugerville’s Smith wins world title

Cathy Smith, of Krugerville, captured the world championship title in performance halter geldings at the 2015 Adequan Select American Quarter Horse Association World Championship Show on Sunday in Amarillo.

For the DRC

Gruver bull rider leads

Stand-alone bull riding has come into its own as both a sport and entertainment in the rodeo world in the past 20 years. Denton has been home to one of the best bull-only events in the region for years with the North Texas Fair and Rodeo’s Bull Blowout.

Ray Sasser: Dove season forecast looks good

Dove season begins in most of Texas on Sept. 1. That’s a Tuesday this year. I’m personally in favor of kicking off the first major hunting season on a Saturday, but Sept. 1 is the longstanding tradition and doesn’t appear likely to change anytime soon.

Denton’s Webb wins twice

Every year at the North Texas Fair and Rodeo, the future stars of pro rodeo competition get their chance at the 21-and-under youth rodeo. Tackling the same events as the professionals, with a couple of events added, the competitive drive and the cowboy spirit are on display as the contestants develop skills to take them to the next level.

Registration underway for city tourney

Denton Parks & Recreation is taking registrations for the Denton City Golf Championship, scheduled for Sept. 12 and 13 at Robson Ranch’s Wildhorse Golf Club.

Fair veteran claims bareback crown

The third and final performance of the 2015 North Texas Fair and Rodeo PRCA event played to another sold-out crowd at the fairgrounds on Sunday night. Cowboys and cowgirls from across the country and even a couple of international competitors were there to try to earn their share of the prize money.

Courtesy photo

PRCA riders put on a show

A record-breaking crowd Saturday night at the North Texas Fair and Rodeo saw the athletes of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association put on one of the best rodeos Denton has seen in years.

Fair opens with PRCA rodeo

The first rodeo performance of the North Texas Fair and Rodeo was held Friday night featuring the cowboys and cowgirls of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. The first of three PRCA performances, its competitors included several world champions and National Finals Rodeo qualifiers.

There’s a license combo to suit you

On Saturday, new fishing and hunting licenses go on sale at about 1,200 retailers throughout the state. Licenses also will be available at the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department website, http://tpwd.texas.gov....

Ray Sasser: Visit range before dove hunting

Dove season begins Sept. 1 in most of Texas. In a banner season, the state’s dove hunters will fire about 35 million shotgun shells. Six out of seven times, the shot misses its target.

Ray Sasser: Heat brings out secretive cuckoos

One of my favorite birds became more visible with the heat of summer. Most people, even those who profess an interest in birds, have never heard of a yellow-billed cuckoo. They may have seen one, but they didn’t recognize it as anything special.

The Dallas Morning News

Ray Sasser: Score bargain hunt on public lands

It’s time to do your homework to score a bargain hunt on public lands this fall. In fact, there’s a drawing deadline coming up Aug. 3 for alligator hunts, youth-only alligator hunts and exotic hunts.

North Texas Karter

Ray Sasser: Firm’s adviser has fished the world

North Texas-based Temple Fork Outfitters just added Larry Dahlberg to its lineup of world-class advisory staff. Temple Fork builds fishing rods and relies heavily on input from expert anglers.

Ray Sasser: Raptor facility to open; Sanger shines

The Blackland Prairie Raptor Center celebrates 11 years in August with the opening of a new facility near Lucas. Widely known for its educational programs throughout North Texas, BPRC will open rehabilitation and flight centers Aug. 3.


All things pickleball

Ford Roberson has never been the type of person to shy away from anything — his competitive juices just won’t let him do that.

Ray Sasser: Toledo Bend ranked No. 1 for bass

Bassmaster Magazine just came out with its annual “Top 100 Bass Lakes in America” list, and Toledo Bend Reservoir is ranked No. 1. In fact, nine Texas lakes made the list, with three in the top 15.

North Texas Karters

Community Calendar

Ray Sasser: Dear old dad would love these gifts

Father’s Day is coming up Sunday, and I’m certain most of you have done your due diligence and have a nifty present appropriately wrapped. If not, here are some things that an outdoors dad might like:

Ray Sasser: Toledo Bend hard to beat for bass

What’s the best bass fishing lake in Texas? Some would say Lake Fork.

Local Schedule

Community Calendar

North Texas Karters

Ray Sasser: Floods endanger area lakes, boaters

The May floods were a mixed blessing. The tragic side was the loss of human lives and millions of dollars in property damage. The positive side was that Texas reservoirs went from 65.8 percent full three months ago to 83 percent full, and they were still collecting runoff early this week.

Softball: A league of her own

It’s Friday morning and Alicia Mathney calmly walks out the door with her two small girls on her hips. After getting them in the car, Mathney, a successful Mary Kay independent beauty consultant, slips into the front seat to begin a long day of running errands and dropping off orders. She checks herself in the rearview mirror to touch up her lipstick one last time before driving off.

Ray Sasser: California angler wins big at Fork

The Toyota Texas Bass Classic was a muddy mess for fishing fans who planned to attend the festivities. Brent Ehrler liked it just fine. Ehrler could find only one fishing spot he was confident about. It was the only fishing spot he needed.

Ray Sasser: Anglers will have to fish hard at Fork

The Toyota Texas Bass Classic starts Saturday at Lake Fork and wraps up Memorial Day. Thirty-five of the world’s top professional anglers will find an entirely different Lake Fork than they saw last May.

Ray Sasser: Tips for dangerous holiday boating

Memorial Day weekend looms May 23-25. It’s the official start of boating season for thousands of recreational boaters. Some of the most crowded Texas lakes are in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Ray Sasser: Ballpark habitat is for the birds

A reader emailed a photo last week of a hawk, asking for help with identification. What made the photo unusual to the reader was that his friend had photographed the bird before a Ranger game at Globe Life Park in Arlington.

Ray Sasser: Rainy spring boosts fishing

A rainy spring was the right ticket for Dallas-area lakes. Check the water levels updated daily online at waterdatafortexas.org, and it’s apparent that most lakes from Dallas east fared well in the past six months.

Honoring an athlete

Deavonte’ ‘DJ’ Hicks, a 2012 graduate of Denton High School and a member of the Centenary College basketball team, was recently named the Northwest Louisiana Christian Athlete of the Year and represented Centenary College at the 2015 NCAA Leadership Forum in Orlando, Florida. Hicks received all-district and all-region honors while playing at Denton High. Hicks, left, is pictured with Centenary coach Adam Walsh.

Community Calendar

Ray Sasser: Revolting bird case exposes illegal trade

The revelation last week that a Dallas resident was ordered to pay $5,000 in fines and restitution for trafficking dried hummingbird carcasses seems revolting to those of us who keep feeders to attract the tiny, supercharged birds to our backyards.

Ray Sasser: Outdoor activities call for splash of DEET

It doesn’t matter if you’re fishing, hiking, camping, birding, looking at wildflowers or hunting turkeys — spring is a good time to be outside. Remember to be careful out there. There are tiny insects that can cause serious health problems by carrying dangerous diseases like West Nile virus and Lyme disease.

Getty Images

Johnson wins Duck Commander 500

FORT WORTH — Kevin Harvick knocked Joey Logano out of the way and thought he was about to pass Jamie McMurray for the lead with 15 laps to go, but Jimmie Johnson ducked underneath both of them and pulled away to win the Duck Commander 500 on Saturday night at Texas Motor Speedway.

Motor sports: Ryan grad making second lap of Sprint Cup career

Marcos Castro was a Ryan tennis player looking to plot a course for college and beyond. The school’s guidance counselors weren’t sure how to help. “I want a career in motor sports,” he told them. “I got a couple of laughs. It’s in the ballpark of ‘I want to be an astronaut.’

Ray Sasser / Outdoors

The Legislature is in session. Elected officials are in the process of reviewing more than 8,000 bills. How anybody could come up with 8,000 more laws than we already have is beyond me.

Ray Sasser: Bank on shoreline fishing this spring

A reader emailed last week to say that he did not have access to a boat and wondered where he could fish from the shoreline.

Five gymnasts qualify for regionals

Five entrants from Achievers Gymnastics Center earned berths at the USA Gymnastics regionals in Wichita, Kansas, this month with their performances at the recent USAG Texas meet.

North Texas Karters