Hopefully, the wind will be a little more forgiving by the time next weekend rolls around. On consecutive days this week I met clients at the launch only to reschedule rather than deal with the wind. It was an easier decision the first day as there wasn’t even enough water to launch the boat.

At least two local anglers that gave it a try this weekend spent some extra money due to high winds. Brad Deslatte was taking a pounding while running the ICW between Stewt’s and Sidney Island when the welds snapped on his Talon bracket. “The only thing left connecting the unit to the boat was the power cord and I was glad that I didn’t have anyone in the passenger seat, said Deslatte. It slammed into that seat just prior to flying over the stern!”

The same afternoon, Jerry Porter ground a blade off the prop on his big engine after getting pinned atop a shell reef on the north side of the ICW. “I couldn’t even get the boat turned around in the right direction to try to drive off the reef,” said Porter. “I finally got out and pushed the bow around and just plowed my way back to deeper water.”

He added that he hadn’t had time to look at the bottom of the boat or check for any lower unit damage so it may be worse than anticipated. And, while on the subject of lower units, thanks to Texas Marine for a phenomenal job of getting me back on the water after I melted down my lower unit due to braided line wrapped around the prop shaft last week. I brought my rig in on a Thursday, they ordered the new unit out of California that evening and my boat was ready to go Monday afternoon!

The Triangle Tail Chasers have one eye on the weather forecast for Saturday as they kick off their 2013 tournament season with an Open Trout event. The launch and weigh-in will take place at Port Neches Park. A team Captain’s meeting will be held at Daley’s Hunt N Fish Friday evening to accommodate last minute entries and discuss rules, etc.

If you haven’t already met one of the Bassmaster Elite pros in a local restaurant or at an area launch over the past several months you will have yet another opportunity to do so next weekend. Mike Iaconelli will spend some time Friday evening at Daley’s and Ish Monroe, John Murray, and John Crews will be there as well the following day.

Granger’s Chevrolet and Simon Outfitters will also host a “Meet the Pros” autograph session Saturday at Simon Outfitters located on Mac Arthur Drive in Orange. Several of the pros will be on hand from noon until 6:00 p.m.

If you are not into fishing, especially bass fishing, chances are that you have no idea just how big a deal this tournament is for the area and the folks that live to chase bass. The Bassmaster Classic is the Super Bowl of competitive bass fishing, but this event is easily the equivalent of an annual MLB All Star game.In fact, it is an even bigger deal considering the amount of time the pros have already spent in the area.

How overwhelmed would a baseball fan be if he walked out on a local field after work with his Little Leaguers only to find Derek Jeter and Albert Pujols tossing the ball around? That is exactly what has been happening over the past several months for many local bass fishermen.

While they asked only that their fans respected the fact that they were down here in advance trying to put together a winning game plan, they also took the time to make themselves surprisingly accessible. On more than one occasion we were late getting away from the LaQuinta on Texas Avenue in Bridge City for a scouting trip due to unscheduled meeting and greeting sessions.

Their wrapped boats parked out front were virtual magnets for fans hoping to just meet a pro at best. More than one full breakfast was reduced to a quick cup of coffee and a muffin after shaking hands and chatting with more folks than you would think even get up that early.

The biggest fishing event in the history of this corner of the state will take place next week and the city of Orange will find itself front and center on the national stage. Take the time to thank the folks that worked so hard to make this happen and whether you like to fish or not…make time to attend at least one weigh-in and welcome visitors to our community!

Lawrence Tettle may have best put the magnitude of the event in perspective when he said that he and his sons cannot wait to attend the blast off each morning as well as the weigh-ins.“The kids are excited about seeing a real ESPN camera man and my eight year old wanted to know if Chris Berman was going to be there,” laughed Tettle. “He said that was the only way to be sure that it was the real ESPN that he watches on television.”

A schedule of events is listed in the top menu on the home page of TheRecordLive.com

Pictured: The pros are back for the upcoming Bassmaster Elite Sabine Challenge.