I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. Today I woke up early after working 3rd shift last night. I decided to go out for a quick deer hunt. At the last minute my wife asked our 3 year old daughter if she wanted to go deer hunting with daddy. Addy excitedly jumped up and down …View full post
My friend Jim and I made it out Saturday morning for the gun opener despite the fact we worked 3rd shift the night before. We got done with work at 6:00am. We made it into our stands about 15 minutes after shooting hours were open. The weather was cold and very windy. Unfortunately we had …View full post
I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. Today I woke up early after working 3rd shift last night. I decided to go out for a quick deer hunt. At the last minute my wife asked our 3 year old daughter if she wanted to go deer hunting with daddy. Addy excitedly jumped up and down while screaming “yes!”
A good friend and hunter I hold in high regards named Chris always told me when taking a young one hunting it is all about them. If your kid is miserable and wants to go home thats what you do. Even if you have only been in your stand for 5 minutes. During the formative years of a young child being exposed to hunting it is imperative they have an enjoyable experience.
There are two categories, which need to be addressed to insure your little ones have a great hunting experience; comfort and activities. A child who is cold, wet, hungry, or thirsty for a long period of time is not going to have an enjoyable time. Not having an enjoyable hunt equates to having a difficult time getting your child to go hunting with you in the future. Bottom line, during cold weather proper clothing and or an enclosed blind are essential to your child’s comfort. Also keep in mind snacks, treats, and beverages. On our hunt today Addy and I shared hot chocolate from a thermos while eating granola bars. The fact I remember hunting with my dad and sharing coffee out of the same thermos made the moment extra special.
Activities are almost as important as comfort. Bring along books, games, coloring books, or anything else to keep your little hunting partner occupied. Not only will these items make for a more enjoyable hunt for them a child who is not bored will stay quieter. Today Addy brought along a coloring book and an I Pad. Before you roll your eyes about electronics being in a deer stand remember it is all about them. She loves several games on the I Pad and it did a great job keeping her occupied.
We kept the hunt short, around 2 hours, which is another recommendation I would have if you are considering taking a toddler hunting. Addy seemed to have a great time and we even talked about hunting a little bit too. We left the stand 10 minutes before legal shooting time because she told me she did not want to walk out in the dark. It pained me to do it, but it was all about her on this hunt. I didn’t sneak quietly out of the area like I would on a normal hunt. My 3 year old was just quiet for 2 hours, which was no easy feat for her. She wanted to make some noise and I wasn’t about to stop her. She screamed, laughed, and asked questions. I pointed out deer sign to her, but more importantly we acted silly and enjoyed each other’s company as we meandered back to the car.
My friend Jim and I made it out Saturday morning for the gun opener despite the fact we worked 3rd shift the night before. We got done with work at 6:00am. We made it into our stands about 15 minutes after shooting hours were open. The weather was cold and very windy. Unfortunately we had tag soup for lunch, neither one of us saw a deer. We didn’t even hear many gun shots and the ones we heard were not close.
We both sat until 10:00am when we decided to pull the plug since we needed to sleep to be back at work at 10:00pm. Jim and I discussed the hunt and both concurred the heavy winds hampered the deer activity. It was still great to get out and we were both thankful for having closed or semi enclosed stands.
It has been a great but frustrating fall. God has certainly showered me with many blessing this fall. For starters in early October my family was blessed with a healthy vibrant baby boy. I am thrilled to have a son and look forward to enjoying many outdoor adventures with him in the future.
As you know from a previous post a good friend of mine and I were blessed with finding a hunting lease. We have been very pleased so far with the lease, however we found and signed it well into the bow season. A good portion of time we could have spent hunting was spent putting stands together, placing stands, and scouting. That was the frustrating part; I love being outside even though it was still fun I would have rather been hunting.
We have seen a good amount of deer activity while hunting. My friend and I have only experienced a few hunts where we have not seen deer. On one of my early November hunts I had the treat of watching a buck scrape for about 20 minutes before the close of legal hunting hours. When it became apparent the buck had no intention of coming over by my stand I tried grunting him in to no avail.
The next day about an hour before dark I shot a small spike. Earlier I had visions of grandeur in implementing QDM on the property. I had hoped seeing a nice 8 pointer on our property would give me the motivation to pass on a smaller buck. I guess that wasn’t the case. Unfortunately the shot was a bit high and after tracking the deer for 4 hours we called it a night after flashlight batteries began dying. By the time we got out the next morning it had rained washing the blood away.
I still have an interest in QDM. I recently joined QDMA and have learned a lot about deer and deer hunting in the short time I have been a member. I highly recommend checking them out. Below are a few trail cam pics from a scrape. We have a stand near the scrape, however we have not spent a lot of time hunting it.
I am really excited a friend of mine and I were able to lease a 100 acre farm. It is a year long lease for hunting any legal species. The farm has a good amount of deer, turkey, and I’m sure coyotes. Most of the land is fields, but there are many brushy fence rows and edges along fields. There is also a nice chunk of woods of about 10 acres surrounded by agriculture fields on three sides. We found the lease on Craigslist and took a chance by committing to the lease without seeing it. That might seem silly or downright stupid to some but let me explain our thought process.
In Wisconsin finding a hunting lease can be a cut throat endeavor where even family members will hold out on each other. We have been looking for a lease for over two years and by the time we find them they are scooped up. I was familiar with the general area of the lease and it has a reputation of good numbers of deer and quality. We were able to get a good idea what the layout of the farm was on google earth. My friend and I discussed and both agreed it was worth the risk, especially since the land owner wants to build a long term relationship between the lessees. Long and short of it we can try it for a year and if we like it we will have the first chance at the lease every everyyear.
We went out yesterday afternoon for a quick scouting job and took my three year old daughter. She was thrilled to find a turkey feather, which of course we took home to mom as a gift. She can already pick out deer tracks but we are still working on not having her scream “deer tracks” at the top of her lungs while pointing at them. Jim and I would still agree it was a lot more fun scouting with Addy.
On a recent camping trip we made a dutch oven chicken pot pie. The recipe was easy to prepare and the end result seemed more extravagant than the actual amount of effort it required. The entire meal took less than 45 minutes. Originally we had a difficult time with getting the top crust to bake. We solved the problem by lighting a small fire on the lid.
4 Tbsp oil
2 or 3 12oz. cans of chicken breast
3/4 cup milk (or 1/4 cup powdered milk and 3/4 cup water)
1/4 cup flour
2 cans Campbell’s cream of chicken soup
2 tsp poultry seasoning (McCormick’s)
1 lb. mixed vegetables (carrots, corn, peas)
1 tube refrigerated crescent rolls
salt and pepper to taste
Put oil in D.O. and place on hot coals to stew.
Add chicken and cook for five minutes
While cooking chicken, dice potatoes and onion.
Add potatoes and onion to chicken; cook and stir for 10 minutes.
Mix milk and flour in a cup.
Add milk mix and all ingredients except crescent rolls to chicken mix.
If it seems too thick, add more water.
Bring chicken mix to a boil
Unroll crescent rolls and create a dough layer on top of the chicken mix.
Put lid on D.O. and place it on a ring of coals. Cover with coals to bake at about 350 degrees.
Check at 20 minutes, then every 5 to 10 minutes. Pot Pie is done when rolls are golden brown and flake.
Serves about 6
I just spent a wonderful weekend in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula at the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness Park. The 60,000 acre park is located on the shores of Lake Superior 15 miles west of the small lakeside village of Ontonagon. The park provides people looking for a wilderness location with an adequate experience. It is certainly not the Rocky Mountains, however the Porkies are a 4 1/2 drive for me as opposed to an 18 hour drive. The park offers approximately 60 back country campsites and just shy of 20 cabins. In addition the park offers a campgrounds for car camping during the summer months.
For this trip my friend Tyler and I decided on the Whitetail Cabin, which was right on the shore of Lake Superior. The walk into the cabin was about 1 mile walk and was very easy, although snow shoes were necessary. The cabin was clean and comfortable, and priced at $60 a night. The rustic cabins have no electricity or running water. For water we melted snow and also treated water from a small stream.
Saturday was spent enjoying a 4 hour hike on snowshoes, on designated trails, along Lake Superior, and bush whacking. We got back to the cabin around 2:45pm and enjoyed a lazy afternoon reading, playing checkers, and talking by the warmth of the wood stove while there was a common U.P. April Snow shower outside. The only other person we saw the entire weekend was while we were walking out towards the car. We bumped into a local skier on a trail who was enjoying the fresh snowfall. After a brief 5 minute conversation we headed out of the Porkies already looking forward to our next trip.
I am disappointed but not surprised by the latest lawsuit filed in federal court by the Humane Society of the United States and it’s cohorts. The goal of the lawsuit is to place gray wolves back on the endangered species list in the Western Great Lakes Region. In the press release the HSUS states “The decision threatens the fragile remnants of the gray wolf population by confining wolves to a small area in the Great Lakes region – where state wildlife managers have rushed forward with reckless killing programs that threaten wolves with the very same practices that pushed them to the brink of extinction in the first place.”
I could not disagree more with that statement. The 2012 Wolf season in Wisconsin was approached in a responsible and conservative way. The original management plan called for 350 wolves in the entire State of Wisconsin. The official population estimate of the wolf population in Wisconsin is 850. Although some people have estimated there are as many as 1,500 wolves in Wisconsin. The original quota was to harvest 201 wolves in the 2012 season. However, it was known ahead of time that the Chippewa Tribes would not use their allotment of wolf tags bringing the actual harvest down to 116 wolves.
I have a hard time understanding how killing 116 wolves out of a minumum of 850 when the managment plan calls for 350 is a “reckless killing” plan. I am not a wolf hater by any stretch of the imagination. I love the fact Wisconsin has a thriving wolf population and beleive it is a testament to modern day wildlife managment techniques. However, wolves need to be kept in check for a varitiey of reasons, which I am not going to get into on this post. I would imagine the vast majority of people that are anti wolf hunting do not live in an area populated by wolves. They should mind their own business and allow the individual states to make the management decisions about our natural resources including wolves.