July 7, 2004

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Check out more photos from this outing in our Photo Gallery!

Homer Martin Ranch was great this year, with the exception of the ANTS!!! Some people had them worse than others, but everyone it seemed had to deal with them sometime. The weather was hot, but the river seemed to be up a bit from last year which was good for the float trip.

The Mullet Mixer was held Friday night, and as always it was a great success. We welcomed two new members and their spouses, Glenna and Mike Noret from San Angelo and Cynthia and Steve Nussenblatt from outside of Houston. They are wonderful people, and we enjoyed meeting them.

Ronnie and Sherri Ray made the float trip on Friday so they knew what to expect on Saturday when the whole group went. Ronnie and Sherri learned that Kayla has greatly improved her kayaking skills and Ronnie bragged about her when he gave us his talk at the mullet mixer. Ronnie’s talk included tips on how to read the water, which ’Äúlane’Äù’ to choose when entering the rapids, and basic river and water safety. Ronnie also mentioned a little bit about the snakes, mainly to stay away from them, but also how to look for where they may be.

We also set up for the silent auction and the raffle to be held on Saturday evening. The items were put on display for viewing and entering bids. Frances and Lavene did an outstanding job with the auction and raffle. A multitude of thanks go out to them and to everyone who solicited or donated items for the auction and raffle.

Saturday dawned bright and early with the kayakers leaving by 8:00 a.m. for the river float. Everyone except Frances, Lavene, Sheila, and Kerri went on the float trip. Frances and Lavene wade fished the river early, and Kerri and Sheila went down and set up shade. The kayakers started arriving at the ranch (the pull out spot) about 3 pm and were very grateful for the shade and cold drinks.

The float trip finally came to an end about 4:30 p.m. We were a tired but happy bunch, ready to meet for dinner at the Mexican food restaurant where we shared fish stories with the wade fishers. I believe you will want to go again if you were lucky enough to experience it this time and if not, you will enjoy it when we go again, I guarantee.

High fives and much applause go to Linda Love and Betty B. who for the first time went down the big rapids on the river and made it through with their kayaks. This was something neither of them had attempted before and they were very proud of themselves for trying and succeeding. Great job Betty and Linda!

Upon completion of the float trip, shuttling back and forth for cars and pot luck dinner it was time for the auction items to be sold and the raffle to be held. Some of the auction items were wanted by many people and bidding was frenzied. Betty ended up with 3 or 4 fishing shirts and the 3 Austin Angler shirts went to Audrey, Sherri and Kerri. The three of them posed for a picture in their new camel hunting attire. The picture is on the web site along with the other photos taken. Kerri ended up with an armload of loot and was very excited about all the tiny flies she bought for Jim (who can’t see to tie them that tiny).

The raffle was also a huge success. We raffled off a krill basket, fly fishing vest, kayak paddle and a Sportsman’s Finest gift certificate with a value of $200.00. The big prize, the gift certificate, was won by Betty Burleson. She promptly asked for directions to the store as she does not live in Austin. Congratulations Betty! I think that most of the people who bid on items got something. Thank you again Frances and Lavene for the outstanding job you did with the auction and raffle.

All in all, I think everyone had a good time and we are looking forward to next year’s outing at Homer Martin Ranch which will be held again during the second weekend in July.



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