Fall is finally here, bringing with it the anticipation of partaking in outdoor opportunities this month and into a new year, and things are looking up after recent rains in much of the state.
Archery deer season began last weekend, with numerous hunters already tagging the biggest buck they’ll see all year, and the general whitetail firearm season will begin in a month, running into January.
While deer are the prime desire for more than a half-million hunters in the Lone Star State every fall, there is no shortage of other critters out there. Dove season is ongoing and cooler weather to the north has a tendency to push more birds down this way, making for some tempting late-season chances.
Later this month, hunters in the High Plains Mallard Management Unit will get a jump on the rest of the state with the kickoff of duck season and will have more days to hunt than other regions again this year. For wingshooters who enjoy the bursting sound of a covey rise, the end of this month also marks the beginning of a four-month timeframe to chase after quail. While the birds have seen a huge population decrease, there always is hope that moisture will help even in some small way to aid the survival of more birds this fall.
When it comes to goose and sandhill crane hunting, October is the apex of anticipation for the start of those seasons that begin in November and run for three months. It’s no secret the western portion of the state has some of the best bird-hunting opportunities in the country, and this year has shaped up to be on par or even better than other good years. This fall and winter also will allow hunters a possession limit of three times the daily bag on migratory game birds, which means you could make a long weekend of it and bring back plenty of great fare for the table – and still be legal.
The same mild temperatures that make doing anything else outside enjoyable right now also are advantageous to anglers looking for bass, crappie, catfish or anything else that will stretch a line. Angling during the heat of the summer can be exhausting but hitting the water now allows for fishing all day if you desire.
Cooler weather also makes it easier to take along a young one on any of these outdoor pursuits since they won’t be as prone to overheating.