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Published by trutested on 17 Dec 2010

Dangerous Encounter

As a hunter there are certain hunts that just stay with you and actually drive you to get off your butt and hike the miles required to find the game your after. These memories stick with you and you remember what is the most important about the sport of hunting. Those little unexpected discoveries each and every day that you have to look for and be in touch with the energy of the outdoors to see but most of all, Feel! My Javelina season in the mountains near Ashfork, Arizona was the perfect theater for this moment to play out.

Joining me on this hunt was my boss Greg, Sam, and the mortgage guy Dave. We had obtained leftover tags after missing the original draw because of busy work schedules and downright forgetfulness. Luckily I found that all the tags were not drawn and even though the area is just not known for great populations of Javelina I had spotted a herd the year prior and had a good notion where to find some pigs. After finding out we had the tags I traveled up a couple weeks prior and scouted the area. I found some tracks in the area and felt like I was in the right place so I told the guys and in a couple weeks the hunt was on!
We entered the area after staying the night in Flagstaff at Greg’s cabin the weather decided to not lend a hand and a snow storm was on it’s way. We had to go home early that day after spending only a few hours in the field. No big deal good friends and not at work, no problem! The journey back to the cabin was an adventure to say the least! The snow really fell and gridlock was upon us on the I-40. The next day things were about the same and because the area I’d scouted was quite a ways from Flag we decided to try a spot Dave had heard about near Ashfork. I did not know the area at all but it looked promising lots of cover, cliffy mountains, caves the whole bit. We parked the vehicles and I headed out while Greg and Sam decided to sit water. I gave Sam my .223 because I wanted to attempt and harvest my pig with my bow. With the fellas at the water Dave went out on his quad to search for tracks and I set out on foot. After about 300 yards I topped out on a ridge and instantly spotted sign. Deer, Elk and javelina had been working in the thick junipers and I was feeling excited. I found a game trail and followed it for about 100 yard when I discovered a fresh lion track. Bah Bump, Bah Bump my heart thumped in my chest. This track was only about an hour old! I followed the tracks for a while but my senses came back to me. I have a bow! Not the best weapon to have when going against 150 pound of killing machine. So I go from kitty mode back to pig mode but nevertheless stoked to see sign of all the critters. I journeyed for probably another mile or so and came to a cliff face. I scaled down to the base and searched for sign found a skull of a javelina and decided to get above and check the base of the entire cliff from there. As I walked into a u-shaped part of the cliff I noticed a lion scrape at the base of the juniper. Holy cow! He is close by! I round the corner about 100 yards away and see motion in the thick brush believing it’s probably a pig I nock an arrow and go on a few steps forward. Again the movement and then it looks up and I see white on its chest and this is no pig! The lion who’s track I’d seen and scrape I’d just passed sat below me not 20 yards away. I froze! What the heck do I do now! He has me located and I have a damn stick in my hand! I kneel down slowly and try and gain control of my adrenalin my heart is pounding like a drum and I have to make a choice. We stare at each other for about 5 minutes the rock under my knee is creating some serious pain and I have no clean shot! Finally I have to move I draw back my bow and whoosh the Lion jumps 10 feet to the top of the cliff at the opposite edge and as quiet as a mouse runs away! What a moment! Did that just happen. I have hunted for 25 years and observed barely a tail of a lion and now I had just had one 20 yards away.! What a day my life as a hunter is complete! Bury me now cuz it gets no better!

As I returned to the place where my friends were, taking about 20 foot strides I recall the elation and great excitement. I couldn’t help but yell and thank God for that moment. My senses were wired and alive, I felt like I could do anything. As I pretty much screamed the story to my buddies they were in absolute amazement. To this very day that memory sticks with me like it was yesterday. So everyday when I awake and say you know I think I’ll sleep in or stay inside where it’s warm I’m reminded of what I could miss out on.

Thanks for reading God Bless

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Published by trutested on 14 Dec 2010

Low Cost gift ideas for Bow Hunters, Hunters and Fisherman

Financially many of us are a bit more strapped for cash than we have been perhaps in previous years. I have put together a few products from three of the leading suppliers of outdoor products for those of us who hunt, fish and Bow hunt. I found items that I was particularly interested in and thought that many of my brothers and sisters in the field would like to have that are well priced and/or on sale. All of these products mentioned have great reviews from me and my team as well as other consumers. I will be compiling reviews and making posts weekly for different items from different store to try and help those starting out or just looking for the best bargain. That being said lets get down to business.

Bass Pro Shops this year seems to have the best bargains this year with their line of quality products. A good example of this is their Deer trail day pack. It sells for 20 bucks and can be equipped with a hydration bladder which comes in very convenient while out scouting, hunting or hiking. It will carry plenty for a small trip and is comfortable. This pack comes highly suggested with great reviews. Next on the list is the Outdoor edge Game processing kit. For 70 bucks you get an array of great knives that really hold their edge. I have used mine on many a critter and have yet to have to sharpen it. Everything in this kit is all you will need to have after a successful hunt. All the stores promote this at the same remarkable price. For excellent quality Camo shirts Redhead Micro lite shirts are a great deal at 30 bucks they are made of great material and hold up well under all circumstances. The True fit line is on sale for 20 bucks as well and is comparable to the micro lite. For pants we highly recommend Red Head Fleece camo pants they are quiet, comfortable and at 30 bucks a great deal.
For the Bow hunter the Plano hard case is a must have! At 40 dollars you can’t believe the protection it delivers under the worst treatments. For Carbon arrows, Bass Pro Shops gives you the Red Head brand Carbon Fury arrows. At 45 Bucks for a dozen they cannot be beat. They come extremely recommended and are durable and stand up to other more expensive brands although they are just a bit heavier than some of the more expensive brands. If you are looking to get a loved one a new Bow then you should undoubtedly check out the Diamond Razor Bow package at 330 Dollars it is a great fast bow and is ready to hunt with as it comes with all the accessories. Some people do not like the rest that is provided with this package but a rest can be picked up rather inexpensive if necessary. Another great package is the Bear Archery Charge. It is available for 400 bucks and comes very highly suggested. Bear archery is a strong company and has been around for years. Founded by one of the finest archers to ever live! For targets we recommend the Morrel Yellow Jacket target. It’ll last a very long time and new covers are available if you wear the first one out. But it takes thousands of shots before that happens.

For the Fisherman in your life Bass Pro Shops is providing great rod and reel combos. For example the Team Daiwa Strike force Combo is only 65 dollars at any length rod you may need. This isn’t true with other companies most only provide the option of 6’6” and 7’ and although most popular sometimes not the best suited for some people and applications. We all know how the Bass fisherman needs at least 4 different sized rods! Also for those that need to have a spinning combo. The Wally Marshall Spinner combo is just 30 bucks and is a bargain for sure. All types of fish are caught on spinning reels every day and as the weather is cold many fisherman are going to be employing light line and fishing deep. Another great idea that we love is the Berkely portable spooler. This awesome gadget makes life so much easier when despooling and spooling lines. But for those of you who like to struggle through the process I understand. You probably don’t ask for directions either. If your looking for raingear at a great price. Look no further than the Squaltex Bone Dry rain paints matched with the Red head camo rain jacket. Together they are 110 bucks but are quality rain gear and are worth the extra money. Hypothermia is way more costly!

At Cabelas I found it a bit harder to find great deals but there are a few that are out there . Their website is just a tad more difficult to navigate for great deals. But I did manage to find a few I felt were spectacular. The Primos Ground max blind is at its lowest price here at Cabelas. This Blind is very spacious and can be used for archery and rifle hunts. It is portable and relatively light weight. Save 50 bucks on it right now only at Cabelas! I also found an awesome Predator call here. The Power dog is on sale for only 100 dollars usual retail price is 150. This digital call contains great sounds already programmed into it and can be used to call in all sorts of critters. Its remote control has a great range of 100 yds to help keep the wiley coyotes, foxes and bobcats confused. Start it up and wait for the action! For Archers/bow hunters Cabelas has their Carbon Hunter Arrows on sale for 30 dollars for a half dozen arrows, naturally they sell them by the dozen for 60 dollars. Compared to the popular Carbon Express Maxima hunter for 150 dollars a dozen this is a great deal! Look into them and compare. I think you will find they are comparable for the price. For ready to hunt combinations on Bows the PSE bow madness is going for 565 bucks and everyone knows that PSE is one of the major and more well known manufacturers. This Bow is fast at well over 300 fps and comes highly reviewed. We have shot these bows and feel that anyone will definitely be happy he or she bought it. Cabelas did win out when it came to targets for archery their comparable bag target is only 40 dollars as compared to 45 for the Morrell yellow jacket. We like both targets but if you really need to pinch some pennies this is the best deal. Also they have a 3-d target from Mckenzie targets for 80 dollars. These targets were the very first life like 3-d targets and have been around for years. They have replaceable inserts and are great out at camp and home for practice! As far as clothing shirts and pants were all pretty much the same comparable price depending on what you like.
For the fisherman at Cabelas I found the Daiwa Exceller rod and real combo. Daiwa provides some great rod and reels and at 60 dollars you cannot beat em. Lengths of rods are 6’6 and 7’0 like I said earlier though. Also I like their Frogg Togg rain gear 60 bucks for the set blows all others out of the water. So keep your fisherman dry and pleased so when he comes back from his trip he will have a great fishing tale not a darn it was cold and wet out there story. We all understand how fisherman like their stories.

At Gander Mountain I determined their Techunter Day back to be awesome! At 100 dollars though I found it hard to place in this article as we are trying to stay on a budget. But I did finally determined to include it because of its superior quality. So if you can spend the extra cash to get a pack that not only looks great but is just a little tougher than the cheaper brands this is the pack for you! It also is water bladder compatible and is made with hi-tech fabrics I don’t even want to try and understand. The camo long sleeve shirts at Gander for the penny pincher is about 2 dollars less expensive than Cabelas or Bass Pro Shop at 18 bucks.
For Archery/bow hunters I found that arrows were not comparable they have the name brands of Carbon Express at 55 dollars and Gold tip at 70 bucks. This is only for 6 arrows and even though they are great arrows I believe that saving these for the hunt is best as to making use of them in every day practice is not really recommended. There are many that will advise you different because they want to get scientific but folks I’m a poor boy so I’ll take the slower arrows to practice with, then a week before hunting season hook my bow up to the more expensive arrows and adjust accordingly! For Bow packages that are ready to hunt they have the Parker Wildfire XP at 300 dollars and Parker Wildfire extreme at 500 dollars these are superb bows and come with everything you need to just take out and start shooting after a few adjustments.
For fisherman at Gander Mountain I located the Bait cast BSP for 50 dollars it has great reviews and comes n 6’6 and 7’0. Also the Creek side basic raingear is going for 100 bucks.
Well I hope I helped give you some ideas about what your outdoorsman might be wanting at a decent price. I think that holiday shopping is comparable to going to the dentist to get a tooth pulled without the drugs so I wish you all the best. Remember if you really need a bailout plan just get them a gift card and you know that they will get what they want. A bit less personable but for some they sure come in handy. From all of us here Happy holidays and God Bless you all!

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Published by trutested on 02 Dec 2010

Hunter Ethics-Mandatory

Today’s world is allowing a whole new code of ethics and morals. For Sportsman this is affecting our sport in a very serious manner. I have seen many an atrocity and have had to confront many sportsman on their unethical behavior and feel I need to discuss this subject with the rest of you hoping it will be passed on to all and get them to think the next time they go hunting, fishing or camping. I grew up on a ranch in Central Arizona and have been engaged with the outdoors and wildlife since I was old enough to lift my head. At age 5 I became involved in fishing and hunting by taking trips with my Grandpa and my Father. As we hunted, fished and worked cattle on different ranches in the 80’s Sportsman seemed to have more respect for one another and made sure that if another stepped over the line as far as respect for land and or the game they pursued, it was reported or handled right then with a firm word and yes sometimes a physical confrontation. Now I don’t approve of the latter as I feel that dealing with the issue if it has to come to that should be done by the authorities (i.e. Game wardens or Sheriffs depends on where you live.). But the thing is many a so called sportsman observes this behavior and does absolutely nothing, just say Oh gosh, that is so wrong, and that is as far as it goes. That is unethical on your part now. It is all of our obligation as TRUE Sportsman to report game infractions and vandalism. I would even correct my best friends and they me if we even thought of doing something unethical.
The unethical conduct that is the most common and easiest to see is the destruction of land by today’s ATV’s, OHV’s and off road vehicle travel. Roads are made for a reason. But all that it takes is for one inert person in a vehicle to drive off the main road then the next guy arrives behind him and thinks hey he went there so I guess I can too! All of the sudden you have another road and land destruction. From there it just escalates because there is always some idiot to go off even that road. Next thing you know you have a network of roads, trails that were never meant to be there. Then what you get is an annoyed land owner or lessee and he decides to put locks on all the gates and close off the property to Sportsman like most of us who practice proper ethics. Another issue that has been affecting our sport is target shooting and vandalism. This has been occurring for years and really is discouraging to see the after effects. When target shooting, merely pick up all your trash and put it in the garbage where it belongs (on State trust land here in Arizona it isunlawful to shoot targets so pay attention to the land use rules before entering). So simple but again there is always one bad apple out there not cleaning up their camp site or temporary gun range. Observing the mess and not cleaning it up on your own is also unethical. Nature gives us so much so give back! Don’t think you’re cleaning up after an flake. Consider it saving our sport. Now I know there are organized cleanups from different groups but cleanups once in a while help alot but don’t solve the problem. Besides it will make you happy you cleaned up the mess and give you more of a sense of ownership to your favorite spot.
Vandalism is also a great concern. Do not shoot signs, water storage tanks and equipment. I don’t know how much money the ranch my father is working for has spent on replacing,but tens of thousands if not more. This equipment helps the wildlife to thrive during a drought and signs help keep the folks who are new to our sport understand rules of use a little better. Destroying signs, fences, gates and other property sets the tone for behavior and gives sportsman a bad name. Usually they are the first thing you see upon coming into a property. Property owners and leasers’ can be quite helpful to sportsman if they and their property are given the regard they deserve. So practice treating other folks property better than you would your own. You might just be shocked on how helpful someone who is out there every day can be when pursuing game.

Less noticeable actions but extremely sad comes from those that simply do not respect the game they pursue. I have seen whole bull elk left on the side of a road with just the cape taken home. It strains my soul as a sportsman to see this. An animal whose life is taken away by such a selfish and ungrateful human being is disgraceful. This can threaten our sport severely by giving fuel to animal rights activists and basically proving that this type of behavior is present by so called sportsman. Have we become so selfish? Is the scoring element of an animal all that is valuable to us? I don’t feel it is wide spread but even one instance is enough. Another dishonorable behavior I have observed is shots taken with other unlawful or unintended animals in the foreground or background. Just be patient and wait for a good shot. Bullets and arrows more than likely will go all the way through so be mindful of what is happening all around the animal you intend on taking. Not making a serious effort to recover wounded game is also becoming a problem. Folks I have hunted for days for an animal I have hit because of a badly placed shot. If you make the choice to take a shot that was more difficult than your capabilities or something transpired to cause a trajectory change that is still your responsibility to give 150% to find and recover that animal. Don’t even think about going after another animal that season. As far as I am concerned you have harvested and counts to your total (for those of you lucky enough to be able to have multiple harvests).

Having respect for other sportsman is a wide spread problem. I do not know how many times I have been sitting a blind and observed someone not even bother to look around an see that someone has set up a blind and might be there already. Now I know that sometimes we are in a tree and you are not looking there just like the game we pursue. But man during hunting season you got to be aware of your surroundings! If you do accidently walk in on somebody at least give a gesture of remorse. Also I despise the stories of how some ones game camera was stolen. This is dreadful and very costly. Someone spent a big chunk of a paycheck for that gear so just leave it alone. Who knows you might even get to share the knowledge that is gained from its use.
In conclusion I believe that sportsman just need to stop considering about only themselves and obtaining that trophy of their dreams at the expense of lowering their values and ethics. We all need to work together. I know I have only covered but a fraction of info on Sportsman ethics. If you are new to hunting you should take a hunter education course. Join a good group in your area and learn as much as you can and please continue to treat our sport, the game we pursue and each other with respect. Thank you for reading my articles please pass it on so that maybe we can renew some ones memory as to why we need to behave ethically in life and in the field.

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Published by trutested on 29 Nov 2010

Hunter Christmas list/ Product review

Hunting, Fishing and Camp ideas for Christmas

Many people this time period of year wonder? “What the heck do I get my close friends or loved ones that love the outdoors”!? Well guys and gals I’m here to make that just a little bit easier for you!

Hunting fans this time of year will be getting prepared for the upcoming deer rut and for Arizona where I am from we are getting our archery skills tuned up and looking for those new products that will help make us successful. This year is going to be colder than many of the years prior. First I would check out clothing products that are lightweight yet will keep them warm and dry. Red Head apparel is what I use and has been a proven brand for a lot of years. Camo patterns vary but I like Mossy Oaks break-up. Next I would look into those items that tend to get broken and lost. For Bow hunters that would be arrows. Carbon Arrows are most common and are very excellent gift this time of year. Arrows can be bought by the dozen or half dozen and vary in price. Intermediate priced ranged products are recommended as cheaper is not always best. I myself shoot PSE brand carbon arrows. They have proved to be tough and long lasting for me and right here in Arizona a miss signifies a deflection off a rock or two. Most arrows will be destroyed under these conditions, but PSE brand arrows hold up the best for me. For those hunters blessed to have a rifle hunt approaching this time a year I would look into warm clothing as mentioned and also new optics that have arrived this year. Also there are many great game calls that will be helpful for the approaching hunts. Trail cameras and their accessories is also turning into a very popular item as well. These gadgets keep us out in the field time and time again searching for the big one and bragging rights. I personally use the Stealth Cam sniper series but also have used my buddy Dave’s Moultrie trail cam and have had great final results. As far as Optics go I use Nikon Action series binoculars at 12×50 power for glassing long distance. I also use Bushnell’s 8×42 waterproof binoculars for when I’ve spotted my buck and am putting on my stalk. They are lightweight and tough and have lasted me throughout the years.

For the Fisherman I would look into new and improved lures, rods and reels and clothing to keep them warm and dry. This time period most fish are down deep so lures such as deep diving crank baits, plastic lures, spinner baits as well as weights and the glass beads are good stocking stuffers. I personally like to use Berkeley power baits for my plastics. For my crank baits I utilize a few different brands I like Excalibur brand the most as they are very lifelike and have consistent diving depths. I use Team Daiwa for my shallow running crank baits and jerk baits they have awesome action and I catch a lot of nice fish with them. Also look into the new electronics that have come out recently as they seem to advance year after year. Fly fisherman that tie their own flies are constantly running out of supplies so you might want to look into that as well. For clothing you need to consider those awesome Jackets with the big logos so they will feel like their favorite BASS pro! These jackets and pants are all very lightweight warm and water resistant. For the trout creek fisherman/fly fisherman a good pair of waders is a must to keep them comfortable and warm. One thing I have learned over time is that I never have enough tackle boxes as well. When everything fits I seem too always be able to fill another one up so deciding on a good tackle box is also a great gift idea. I choose Plano tackle boxes and have used them since I was 5 yrs old and love em!

For the Camper/hiker looking into a good pair of boots I believe is a must. Footwear always gets worn out after all those miles put in with the heavy packs. I use Danner boots mid ankle boot for my long hikes and hunting trips. They are light in weight and water resistant and have undeniable comfort. For those day hikes I prefer Columbia footwear because they are even lighter and are very well priced for the top quality you get. Also look into propane packs, lightweight cooking utensils and new and improved products that let the hiker/camper make his camp just a bit more comfortable. A good Global positioning system is now a very popular item to take with you as well. There are many different types at many different price ranges. I use a Garmin 60 CSx. It’s a very precise search for my GPS once I learned to keep it on the side of my pack in a pocket for sure. I also have used Garmin’s 520 and 530. Both are great combo GPS/radios although the range is not optimal like most radios, generally only good for about 2 to 3 miles max. Although they say they have a 15 mile range. Good clothing is also a great item to have and yes great pairs of good wool socks are awesome stocking stuffers especially to us hikers?. For hiking I love Columbia’s clothing line they are well priced and comfortable for all seasons. They are also a very well established company that has been providing quality gear for many years.

Well hopefully I’ve given you guys a good base on what your Outdoorsman might have on his wish list. Most importantly remember that we all just love receiving the stuff that pertains to the outdoors. It is here where we relax and really put all our troubles behind us. We fantasize about our next trip coming up and love visiting the stores with all our favorite gadgets and equipment. It fills our hearts and souls with joy to be able to go out and breathe in the fresh country air and meet others that share our love. Most of us are lucky enough to share the experiences together with our families. So no matter what you get I’m sure it will make them happy. Just so you folks know I am not paid to endorse any of the products that I have suggested. I truly like these products and recommend them out of my personal experience. I will be providing many more blogs to come and hope that you find them helpful. Thank you, Happy Holidays and God Bless!

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Published by Kyle_Knapp on 26 Nov 2010

READ!!!

just curious which is better whisker biscuit or a fork type set up?

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Published by jodimark on 25 Nov 2010

janesville bowmen blacklight challenge

saturday dec 12. 8am to 4pm and sunday dec 13 8am to3pm,the janesville bowmen in janesville wi. are hosting a indoor mooonlight archery mayhen challenge, it a 360 indoor shoot under black lights, registration will be $10.00. also a $5.00 50/50 pot for high score.open to all ages. kids are welcome.

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Published by Matt Weaver on 13 Nov 2010

Martin Silencer or Pantera

I am looking to get a Martin Silencer or a Pantera. Any suggestions from people who have them/shot them?

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Published by wyomingbucks on 12 Nov 2010

Tripod Stand or Ground Blind?

Looking to buy either a Tripod Stand or a Ground blind just wondering if there is any distinct advantage to one over the other? Or is it just a matter of preference.

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Published by charliehunts4life on 11 Nov 2010

arrow speed?

if i bought a bowtech destroyer 350 at 29″ draw and set at 60 pounds how fast should i be shooting with a 29″ gold tip xt hunter? i would think in the low to mid 290s.

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Published by gibby1122 on 03 Nov 2010

Safety caution for gorilla ladder sticks

PLEASE READ THIS POST IF YOU USE GORILLA LADDER STICKS. On 10-25-10 I had the unthinkable happen to me twice. The metal clasp on the strap that holds the Gorilla ladder sticks broke while i was climbing up and setting up new ladder sticks. Thank goodness I was wearing my safety harness and only escaped with a few scrapes, bumps and bruises. On 10-26-10 I called Gorilla to let them know what happened and the Customer Rep was as horrified as I was about the failure in the buckle. I sent her pictures and she promised to send me a return authorization form to return the products for immediate inspection. She also stated she would make the public aware and I did not have to worry about that. She has never sent the form, has never returned any of my calls, has never returned any of my emails and has hot to my knowledge made the public aware of this serious issue. If this has happened to you or you know anybody that uses these dangerous and faulty sticks please share my story. Had I not been wearing my safety harness I may not be here to tell this story.

 

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