Friday, September 28, 2007

Traditional Archery Website

For those of you that may be interested in traditional archery or are already a traditional archer be sure to check out Pete Ward's website. I've been searching for quality information on traditional bows etc. and this website is one of the best I've found. Thanks Pete for the good work, it is appreciated.

Training a Retriever Pup

I wish that I would have known about this tip when my lab was a puppy. He is a fantastic retriever both on land and in the water, but in the water Charlie likes to take the fastest way back to shore and then run the bank back to me. This is a bad habit for a retriever and it would not bode well during any competitions.

A method I recently read about for training retriever pups is to go to a small pond that is encircled by tall grass or cattails. Beat down a small path to the waters edge and do your water retrieving training from there. The pup will have no choice but to return to you if they want out of the water. When the pup does get back to you, lay on the praise. After a few sessions of this training it should be engrained into the pups mind that he needs to retrieve directly to you if he wants the praise and the chance to retrieve the dummy again.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Fluorocarbon Line

If you are using fluorocarbon fishing line you need to know that this line does not have a memory. What this means is that in a way it is like salt water taffy. When it gets stretched out it stays streched out. This stretching is the cause of much frustration for the fisherman because it is along this stetched out section that most break offs will occur. Do yourself a favor and the next time you get snagged while using fluorocarbon line. Back up your boat as close to the snag as possible, pull a few more feet off of your reel, cut the line and re-tie. Be sure to retrieve your cut line from the water and hopefully your lure also.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Practice Calling Deer

If you don't have any faith in a deer call or are afraid of scaring deer away, only use it after you see a deer that you are not going to shoot! You will get to see that it doesn't scare them and you will get to see their reactions. Make sure to use the appropriate call though or you just might confirm to yourself that they don't work.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Boat Landing Etiquette

Don't become the victim of boat ramp rage. Learn the following method of unloading and loading your boat for a more enjoyable time at the boat landing.


Find a quiet spot in the parking lot away from the launch lane traffic. Some ramps provide lanes to "prep" the boat for the water ("make ready" area).

Remove all tie-downs except the winch hook attached to the bow eye of the boat. Remove any outboard or stern-drive tie-downs or supports. Anything that can be detached from the trailer should be placed inside the tow vehicle.

Stow needed gear and required equipment in the boat. Make a thorough pre-launch check of accessories (bilge pump, lights, battery switches, etc.) to ensure they are working.

Place any maneuvering aides equipment (boat hooks, paddles, fenders, anchors, etc.) within easy reach. Store lines where they are handy. It is a good idea to secure at least one mooring line to a bow cleat.

Check the boat over carefully one more time. THE BOW EYE WINCH LINE SHOULD STILL BE SECURED and the engine raised, though ready to be lowered.


Wait patiently in line at the launch ramp. When it is your turn, stay in a single lane! Pull your rig onto the ramp and back the trailer until the wheels are at the water's edge. Be slow and deliberate. This boating activity requires a degree of precision developed only with practice. (Practice during low use times in a parking lot or other large area.)

The launch procedure can be accomplished solo, but it is much easier with two people. The second person signals the tow vehicle driver when the boat and trailer are in position. Place the tow vehicle in GEAR or PARK. Put the emergency brake on.

The second person can board the boat and lower the outboard or stern-drive unit to its normal operating position. Be sure the lowered unit is not touching the ramp.

When given the signal, the vehicle driver backs slowly to a position where the engine's cooling water intakes are submerged. This assures the engine will receive adequate cooling water during warm-up, so no internal damage occurs.

Start the engine. Let it warm up. This prevents the engine from stalling at critical times when leaving the trailer.

Once the boat engine is running, check to see everything is operating properly. Ease the engine into and out of reverse a couple of times. If it doesn't stall, you are ready for the big step-- backing off the trailer.

Unhook the bow winch hook. If using a fixed bunk or adjustable trailer, have the tow vehicle driver back the trailer into the water until the boat begins to float free of the bunks or bolsters. This may mean backing the tow vehicle's rear wheels into the water. It should now be possible to shift the boat into reverse and slowly back off the trailer. If not, your helper might have to push back at the bow. If this effort does not help, have the boat driver sit in the stern of the boat while someone pushes the boat back. If none of these procedures work, the trailer and boat may need some adjustment.

A multiple-roller trailer differs somewhat in that as soon as the bow hook is released, the boat should roll off with very little effort. You need not back this type of trailer in nearly as deep as a bunk trailer. Use caution. The drive unit or outboard must remain in a slightly upright position so it will not hit the ramp as the boat rolls off the trailer.

Control the launch of a roller trailer with the boat's forward and reverse throttle. Once off, lower the drive unit.


For boats with additional operators, drop off a person who is experienced in trailering to pick up the vehicle and trailer while the boat and occupants wait offshore. Do not block a ramp with an unattended boat or vehicle.

The line is formed by cars and trucks with trailers, not by boats already in the water waiting to be retrieved. Please wait your turn in line.

When first in line, back the trailer into the launch lane. The boat operator can slowly drive onto the trailer. Secure the winch hook to the bow eye. Winch the boat up to the stop and secure the winch. Be sure the boat is centered on the trailer and the lower unit is raised before pulling out.

Proceed to an uncongested area of the parking lot to further secure the boat.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Using Tire Pressure

You can get a lot farther off road this fall by altering your tire pressures for the conditions. The rules are pretty simple: If the tires need to penetrate to gain traction leave the tires at the pressures indicated on the sidewall. If the tires need sidewall protection increase the tire pressure by 20%. If the tires need to float over thick mud or soft sand decrease the tire pressure by as much as 50%, just be sure the you don't go too low or the wheel could damage the tire. In order for you to take advantage of changing tire pressures you will need to purchase a DC compressor. These are inexpensive and an item everyone should own anyway.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Jigging for River Walleyes

Jigs are made to order for walleye fishing in rivers. Cast jigs into active water below dams, rock piles and other obstructions. Sand and gravel bars at the mouths of feeder streams are also good jigging bets. Some river specialists cast upstream and retrieve at cross angles to the current, letting the water carry the jig downstream during the retrieve. This "wind-in" covers lots of water while the jig simulates natural food being washed downstream.

Others cast downstream and slowly retrieve the jig back against the current. When current is strong enough, it's possible to work the jig in one spot without retrieving line. This approach enables you to hound a hot spot. Your bait stays in the water more with less casting.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Fishing for the Young by Ted Takasaki

More than four out of five Americans fished as a child. Surveys show most adults who fish today started before their 13th birthday. That means the best way to preserve the future of the sport is to take kids fishing.

A day on the water can improve the bond between parent and kid or make you the hero of the neighborhood. Fishing builds self-esteem, independence, responsibility and decision-making.

All it takes is a little patience. Be sensitive to how children will judge the time they spent fishing. It's that judgment that will determine if you have a fishing pal for life.

Here's a few ideas to help;
* Start the trip long before you hook up the boat. Include youngsters in on planning. Show them where the lake or river is on the map. Show them hydro maps of the targeted waters. Build anticipation.

* Let them help with preparations by spending a night or two after dark with flashlights and trowels digging in the yard for nightcrawlers. Kids love to get dirty. And, you might just remember why you liked hanging out after dark long after mom called you home for dinner.

Take them to the store and let them pick out lots of goodies and things to drink.

Let them help make and wrap the sandwiches. Have them gather the sunscreen, insect repellent and sunglasses. Take a bird-watching guide along.

Spend some time in the yard teaching them how to cast. Show them what you mean by vertical jigging.

The point is the more they feel a part of the trip, the more they will work to make it a success.

* Check state regulations. Some require children under certain ages to wear safety jackets. If your state doesn't require them, it's still a good idea they do. Make certain theirs fits and is comfortable.

* Don't use Mickey Mouse gear even for small children. Tackle foul-ups are just as frustrating for them as they are for you. Spincasting reels are OK for youngsters. But, make certain they are good ones that won't break down.

* It's not a good idea to target muskies the first time out for a lot of obvious reasons. Kids want ACTION. They don't care if their fish are small. They just want something to pull on the line over and over and something to brag about at school on Monday morning.

Target schooling fish. Bluegills are good. Perch and crappies are good, too. Walleyes can be good at certain times. Do your homework to insure as much success as you can. Go when the odds of catching fish are highest.

* Use a simple slip-bobber rig for panfish. Kids love to watch for the bite. (And, so do we.)
Use a Thill float, a small hook and enough split shot to balance the rig to detect even light bites. Show them how to tie a simple Palomar knot. It's quick, good for many uses and it works.

Use wax worms and nightcrawler pieces for bluegills. Use wax worms or minnows for crappies. Your son or daughter might get a surprise in the form of a big bonus catfish or bass.

Don't get too fancy. Older kids can be taught to jig for walleyes and sauger in rivers. But, let them use heavier jigs, like 3/8 and 5/8th Fuzz-E-Grub jigs to keep them on the bottom in the strike zone. It's probably easier to teach them to use three-way rigs with heavier weights on the dropper. Same is true for Lindy rigging. Make sure the weight is a heavy one to teach them the importance of bottom contact.

When the bite is on, trolling for walleyes in lakes and reservoirs is simple and fun. Use planer boards and teach them how to spot strikes. Let them reel in the fish.

* Here's an important point: Kids don't care what kind of fish they catch. Make a big deal out of whatever they reel in.

Put away your prejudices, and applaud even carp. They fight great, and that's all children want. Nothing is more depressing than to watch a kid fight a fish for five fun-filled minutes only to hear the grown-ups in the boat say, "Oh, it's just a carp." The smile from the little fisherman disappears very quickly.

* Take lots of pictures or videotape. They let you relive the fun and reinforce the experience over and over again.

*Stop often for snacks and soda. As most parents know, hungry kids are tough to handle.

* Even if you don't plan to keep any fish, put the first one or two in the livewell. Let the kids check on them often. It gives them something to do. The same goes for the minnows. You'll be surprised how a trip to the livewell or bait bucket to check on the fish will perk up bored kids.

* We happen to think it's a good idea to take some fish home to eat. It is good to show children the angling process from water to table. It teaches kids there's nothing wrong with harvesting a few fish according to the state and local laws. Kids should know that there is a food chain and they are part of it.

* If you shore fish, let them explore. Countless hours can be filled with exciting discoveries, like crawdads hidden under rocks.

* Never, ever make them stay longer than they want. When fishing becomes a chore for them, you've lost.

Nearly a quarter of Americans who fish are under the age of 16. Someone has to show them how. Don't you think you should?

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Stalking Your Stand

This idea, which I would have never thought of comes from Byron Ferguson, the famous archery guy. Byron stated that you should stalk your stand. What this means is that you should approach your deer stand as if there is a deer standing by or below it. This makes so much sense because isn't the reason you placed your stand in the spot you did is because you expect deer to be by it?

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Mathews Switchback For Sale

Anyone out there interested in buying a like new Mathews Switchback. It is a left hand bow with a 30" draw. #60-#70 draw weight. The bow will include a Mathews drop-away rest, Specialty Archery peep & Loesch custom grip. I'm going to make the switch to traditional archery but need to sell this bow first. Email me at for more information.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

A Real Deer Story

I received these pictures in an email and I thought I would pass along the story and pictures. Pretty amazing stuff.

You won't believe this one. I was hunting out in Sidney this past weekend for my muzzleloader buck. Well I got him. I'll make a long story short.

First off, Mike kept telling me he saw a buck with an arrow through his head.
I thought he was full of it, but he kept telling me he saw it again.

Sat. evening we saw this buck jumping around going out of control from about 350 yards away. Mike told me it was probably the one with the arrow in its head. The buck was with another one that night.

The next morning I sat up in the tree stand and waited, all of a sudden at about 10 minutes after sun up there were two bucks that came right to the side of my stand, 30 yards. I saw the arrow instantly and didn't know what to think. Anyways, he ended up giving me a shot and I took him.

Looks like the arrow was in there probably at least a couple months or more. No blood or anything and you could move the arrow.

Forget the Bucks

You have spent the summer patterning a buck and now he is gone. Has the rut started? If it has you can pretty much forget about the pattern the buck developed during the summer and early fall. He has one thing on his mind and it's not his normal routine.

If you want to harvest a buck during the rut forget about him and look for the does. Find out what the does are doing, where they are doing it and when they are doing it. If you can pattern a doe during the rut you will also find the bucks.

Also remember that does get harassed a lot by bucks of all ages, waiting for her to go into estrus. To excape this harrassment many does will seek out the thickest cover they can find. The dominant bucks know this and if you find a doe holed up in thick cover you can bet that a visitor will appear at some point in time.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Rut Week

If you need to pick a week of vacation for deer hunting, choose November 3rd - November 9th. In the Northern 2/3's of the United States this is the week that the first does of the year will likely come into estrus. If you live in the Southern 1/3 of the country you will need to do some local investigation of the deer activity and adjust these dates accordingly.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Light Minnows

If you are heading to your fishing spot by foot leave the heavy minnow bucket in the truck. Pick out the minnows that you want to use and put them in a zip lock bag with a little water. They will live for quite a while and if you plan on jigging it does not matter if a few die.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007


If you are one of the lucky hunters this fall to kill an early season animal that is still in velvet consider it an early Christmas present. Not many hunters get the chance to haul such a trophy out of the woods.

However, if you are not careful you could do damage that the taxidermist can't fix. Follow these steps and your special trophy will grace your wall for years to come.

  1. Never, and I mean never use the antlers as a handle. Don't even lift the head up by the antlers for a picture. If the tips of the antlers are already showing you can be assured that the velvet is close to coming off naturally.
  2. Do not drag the animal on the ground. Use a sled or another means of transporting it out of the woods. If you can cape the animal in the field, do it.
  3. Keep the antlers out of the sun and protected from insects.
  4. Keep the antlers dry and cool.
  5. Do not lay or store the antlers on their side or upside down. Set them with the tips up to allow the blood to drain.
  6. Get the antlers to the taxidermist or the freezer as soon as possible.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007


If you use a personal computer, create a folder called "Checklists" in which to store lists of items you don't want to forget the next time you leave on an outdoor excursion. In the folder, keep permanent lists for Boating, Deer Camp, Bass Fishing, Upland Hunting, etc. If you don't use a computer, type up the lists and keep them in a "Checklists" folder in your filing cabinet. After each outing you should adjust your checklist to include items your could have used and delete items that were not needed.