The 42^nd Annual Memorial Classic is officially in the book and the fishermen that participated in the two day S.A.L.T. tournament managed to weigh-in some very solid catches in spite of the weather.A little bit of rain and sunshine and a whole lot of wind changed a lot of game plans.

This tournament not only kicks off the summer for most local saltwater anglers, but always provides a pretty good read as to the current status of Sabine Lake fishing.The final weigh-in confirmed the fact that it is probably a little better than most folks thought.

Justin Trahan took home the first place check for the largest red with a 9.74 pound red.Four of the top four were all over the nine pound mark.Edna Ramsey won the bonus check for the red with the most spots.Her winning fish looked more like a leopard than a fish with a whopping 46 spots!

While seven of the top ten trout failed to eclipse the four pound mark, Mike Fresco’s winning 27-inch speck weighed a very impressive 7.99 pounds.Devin Cryer’s 4.58 pound winning flounder was one of the seven top ten flounder released alive.

Matthew McBee won the sheepshead division with a 5.73 pound fish, Chris Wolfe earned first place honors with a 6.01 drum and Courtney LeBlanc took home a first place check for her 1.0 flounder. Kristen Zenos posted a two day total of sixteen pounds to win this year’s Lady Angler Award.

The S.A.L.T.Club hosts family oriented tournaments every month and welcome new members and their families to join in the fun.Entry fees are low and it gives you one more reason to “have to go” fishing!

James and Kelly Parsons of Houston enjoyed a bitter sweet trip on Sabine Lake this weekend. “We had a pile of good reasons not to drive over and fish the S.A.L.T. tournament with our cousin, but wound up just fishing for fun anyway,” said Kelly.“Too many people out on a holiday, the wind was going to blow, we didn’t catch anything the weekend before…..all good reasons to stay home, but there we were launching our boat at the R.V. park on the island at 10.00 in the morning.”

The initial game plan was to run from the R.V. Park across the lake to the Garrison’s Ridge area in hopes of finding a little clearer water.About half way across, the Parson’s cousin, Tim, spotted several terns working pretty tightly.Not usually a dependable indicator of fish, but with nothing to lose, they shutdown the big engine and troll motored within casting range.

“The next time we picked up the troll motor,” said Kelly, “we had 27 trout and nine slot reds in the ice box. Tim griped the entire time because we didn’t enter the tournament, but we wouldn’t have won a single category.”

Nonetheless, the trio stumbled up on one of those bites that used to be common place on the lake this time of the year.The best news of all for local anglers is that the potential for more of those type outings still exists.

Too many anglers refer to terns as liar birds, but I wouldn’t pass up terns, gulls, pelicans or even vultures right now.Regardless of the type of bird, they are worth checking out anytime they are reluctant to leave a small patch of water.

Kelly said that as aggressive as their fish were, both the trout and the redfish, they still caught most of them bouncing their lures off the bottom.They caught all of their fish on a chartreuse-orange tail Swim bait and a chartreuse-silver flake paddle tail grub. “We continued catching trout thirty minutes after the terns left and we never saw them again!”

Congratulations to six year old Katy Collins who caught her first keeper redfish while fishing with her Dad this weekend.“The fish weighed six pounds and after several hundred pictures she turned it loose,” reported her proud Dad, Len.

“I asked her to hold the rod while I dug around for her granola bars and the next thing I know she is hanging on for dear life and screaming. I was proud and excited and all of those things that she caught the fish on her own, but I was even prouder of the fact that she hung on to my custom rod and Shimano reel!”

He ended his email with, “That was the only bite we got all morning long.”