Welcome to Bat City Outdoors


News: Paddling Texas: A Guide to the State’s Best Paddling Routes available for order.

Waves of live music, heaps of barbecue, personalities like Kinky, tireless Texas fight football fans, electric get-downs on 6th Street, it’s all right here. And still people treat each other like neighbors – Austin is just right.

Even so, that urban just right can bake on like sun-dried mud. When it does, it can only be scraped off in the outdoors. Luckily, Austin has some of that too. It’s in the rivers and ravines and with the waterfolk and wildlife that are Bat City outdoors.

Here you’ll find stories about the outdoors in Austin and beyond. And, you’ll find information to help get you out there.

Thanks for reading,
Shane Townsend

Bat City Outdoors |
From Austin. For Outdoorsfolk Everywhere.


Venison Donations Feed 11 Million

For food banks nationwide, acquiring protein is a challenge because of the high cost of meat. Fortunately during hunting season, hunters help make up the shortfall with generous donations of protein-rich, low-fat venison that provide 11 million meals annually to the less fortunate.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation, the trade association for the firearms, ammunition, hunting and shooting sports industry, reports that, thanks to hunters, an estimated 2.8 million pounds of game meat makes its way each year to food pantries, church kitchens and shelters and onto the plates of those in need.

“Without venison, some of these organizations would not have protein, wouldn’t have meat, to give to those folks who are coming in,” said Peter Aldrich of Hunt To Feed in Connecticut.

With one deer able to feed up to 200 people, it’s easy to see how important donations of hunter-harvested venison are to charitable food providers. Last year in Missouri, for example, 4,500 hunters donated more than 227,000 pounds of venison through a state program.

The NSSF video called Share Your Harvest encourages hunters to contribute some portion of their harvest this hunting season. “If you have a successful hunting season, donating venison is a way to make it an even better and more meaningful one,” points out Glenn Sapir, the video’s host.

Many states have at least one organization that will accept donations of venison or other game meat and ensure it is properly processed and reaches individuals and families in need of a nutritious meal. The NSSF website Hunters Feed can assist hunters in finding a charitable food provider, and your state wildlife agency, local fish and game club or food pantry can help as well. Various donation guidelines may apply, so it’s best to check with the organization or processor before bringing in your game.

If you’re not a hunter and wish to be part of this caring effort, most organizations will accept donations to help pay for butchering and other services.

The tradition of hunters donating deer and other game for charitable purposes is longstanding, and the impact of that generosity is told in NSSF’s infographic, Hunters Feed Those in Need.

About NSSF
The National Shooting Sports Foundation is the trade association for the firearms industry. Its mission is to promote, protect and preserve hunting and the shooting sports. Formed in 1961, NSSF has a membership of more than 10,000 manufacturers, distributors, firearms retailers, shooting ranges, sportsmen’s organizations and publishers. For more information, visit www.nssf.org.

Eating Orphans: An innovative solution

If you love it, set it free. If it comes back to you, it’s yours. That’s a beautiful old sentiment.

Here’s one from this year: If there’s only three, let someone shoot one for four million Namibian dollars; and if the money can’t save the species at least the last two can live out their days as royalty.

Fair enough. There’s logic in that – a sacrifice-the-one-to-save-the-many battlefield triage kind of logic I hadn’t applied to conservation. But 97,523 self-proclaimed LinkedInnovators say this is the innovation generation. It’s true. We’re reformers. We’ve made our poor people fat and rich ones skinny. We’ve segregated kids from elders and now they both plump up, dope up, and rot away in and on HD. We’ve ignored our farm-fur-fin-and-feather-to-fork-food-chain so long that its future rests infirmly in the pasty, soft, slender hands of hunt-and-gather-hipsters. Now, we’re contract killing for conservation. Beneficiary: Endangered black rhinos. Awesome.

Read the full story here at GAFF Magazine.

Gold Medal in 2014 International Davey Awards

The Meadows Center & Eye Byte Solutions Win Gold Medal in 2014 International Davey Awards

New York, NY (October 21, 2014) –The winners of The 2014 Davey Awards have been announced by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts today. The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment and partner design firm Eye Byte Solutions have been named gold medal winners for their collaboration on a promotional piece entitled, “No natural resource is more important to our future. Water is what we do.”

With nearly 4,000 entries from across the US and around the world, the Davey Awards honors the finest creative work from the best small firms, agencies and companies worldwide. Please visit http://www.daveyawards.com to view the full winners list.

The Davey Awards is judged and overseen by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts (AIVA), a 600+ member organization of leading professionals from various disciplines of the visual arts dedicated to embracing progress and the evolving nature of traditional and interactive media. Current IAVA membership represents a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, advertising, and marketing firms including: Code and Theory, Condé Nast, Disney, GE, Keller Crescent, Microsoft, Monster.com, MTV, Push., Publicis, Sesame Workshops, The Marketing Store, Worktank and Yahoo!, and many others. See http://www.aiva.org for more information.

“This year’s Davey Award winners truly embody the idea of small firms with big ideas. The work entered into this year’s competition reflects a smart approach to creativity that highlights the capabilities and talents of small agencies worldwide” noted Linda Day, Executive Director of the Davey Awards. She added, “On behalf of the Davey Awards and the Academy, we applaud this year’s entrants and winners for their dedication and commitment to perfecting their craft. Congratulations once again for a job well done.”

For more information about The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, please visit http://www.meadowscenter.txstate.edu/

For more information about Eye Byte Solutions, please visit http://eyebytesolutions.com/.

For more information about the Davey Awards, please visit http://www.daveyawards.com, email the Davey Awards at info@daveyawards.com or call us at (212) 675-3555.

About The Davey Awards:

The Davey Awards exclusively honor the “Davids” of creativity, the finest small firms, agencies and companies in the world. David defeated the giant Goliath with a big idea and a little rock – the sort of thing small firms do each year. The annual International Davey Awards honors the achievements of the “Creative Davids” who derive their strength from big ideas, rather than big budgets. The Davey Awards is the leading awards competition specifically for smaller firms, where firms compete with their peers to win the recognition they deserve. Please visit http://www.daveyawards.com for more information.

The Davey Awards is sanctioned and judged by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, an invitation-only body consisting of top-tier professionals from a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, advertising, and marketing firms. Please visit http://www.aiva.org for a full member list and more information.

Spread the word: Youth outdoor writing contest

Can you help publicize the 3rd Annual Junior Outdoor Journalist Adventure Story Writing Competition to middle and high school students in your area? The contest is divided into two divisions: middle school (grades 6-8) and high school (grades 9-12).

  • First Place winners in each division will receive a new laptop or tablet computer.
  • Second Place winners will receive $100.
  • Third Place winners will receive $25.
  • Winners may also receive an invitation to the 2015 TOWA Conference in Corpus Christi Feb. 26 – March 1.

See Rules & Registration Form for complete rules.  Deadline for entries is Midnight Saturday January 31, 2015.

For more information, see http://towa.org/junior-outdoor-journalist-writing-competition/

Register here  http://towa.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/2015-Junior-Outdoor-Journalist-Writing-Competition.pdf

Thank you for your help.

Back Country Kings Gear Guide


This gallery contains 17 photos.

Earlier this year an opportunity presented itself: Hop a place to Juneau, hop a float plane up the Taku River to Tatsamenie Lake and spend a week in a back-country camp where I would have a chance to catch multiple … Continue reading

Backcountry Kings

Cold fog hangs white like muslin over the Juneau morning, masking the waters of the Taku River. To the Native Tlingit, “taku” is “salmon.” The river has long been central to the lives of people here and it’s one of the most important salmon fisheries in the world. An hour bush flight up the watershed runs the glacier-fed Tatsatua River. This stream is known by few. And, the salmon are plentiful, gorgeous, and gear-busting big.

38" Back Country King

38″ Back Country King

Let’s try it,” says my bush pilot Denis. Ahead stands the Coastal Mountain range, the Stikine Ice Fields, goats and grizzlies, and pristine North American wilder- ness. He hands me earplugs and stows an over- night bag and a sat phone – just in case.

I strap into the co-pilot’s seat and laugh at the prospect. The only switch in reach reads, “Do not turn off in flight.” No worries there. Tick, tick, tick Denis flips a dozen switches. The growl of the single-prop de Havilland Beaver fills my chest. Denis looks over and nods. The prop blurs then disappears, pulling the floats through the chop and then skimming the river’s surface. We are up and catching half-glimpses of the wilderness below. The thickening curtain forces us downward. We fly the river toward Tatsamenie Lake where I hope to rendezvous with the largest Pacific salmon, the Chinook, Oncorhynchus tshawytscha: the King.

Read the full story here at GAFF Magazine.