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  • 26 Jul 2016
                                                                        Smith & Wesson to Acquire Crimson Trace   Corporation Acquisition of Market Leader Provides Established Platform for Electro-Optics Business Smith & Wesson Establishes Fourth Division Closing Expected August 2016   SPRINGFIELD, Mass., July 25, 2016 -- Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: SWHC), a leading manufacturer of firearms and a provider of quality accessory products for the shooting, hunting, and rugged outdoor enthusiast, today announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Crimson Trace Corporation (Crimson Trace), the industry leader in laser sighting systems and tactical lighting for firearms, for $95.0 million, subject to certain adjustments, utilizing cash on hand.   Crimson Trace has long been a key supplier of laser sighting systems for Smith & Wesson. For more than two decades, Crimson Trace has provided consumers, military units, and law enforcement officers around the globe with the world’s largest selection of award-winning laser sight and tactical light products. Crimson Trace offers more than 225 products and is widely recognized as the world’s leading brand of laser sights for firearms. Its award-winning innovations include the Lasergrips®, Laserguard®, and Rail Master® platforms. The company’s product line also includes the Defender Series®, Lightguard®, and its new LiNQ™ wireless activation system. Based in Wilsonville, Oregon, Crimson Trace operates from a 50,000 square foot , leased facility where it engineers and manufactures its products.   Crimson Trace was founded 22 years ago and has organically generated a ten year compound annual revenue growth rate in excess of 10%. The company maintains a product development team that has an established track record of launching high-quality, innovative laser sighting products. As a result, its products maintain a premium position with hundreds of independent retailers as well as large sporting goods retailers, including Cabela’s, MidwayUSA, Nation’s Best Sports, and internet retailer Optics Planet, Inc.   James Debney, Smith & Wesson President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “Crimson Trace provides us with an exceptional opportunity to acquire a thriving company that is completely aligned with our strategy to become a leader in the market for shooting, hunting, and rugged outdoor enthusiasts. As the undisputed leader in the market for laser sighting products, Crimson Trace serves as an ideal platform for our new Electro-Optics Division. Firearms purchasers frequently buy electro-optic accessories to enhance the capabilities and performance of their firearms. The growth that Crimson Trace has delivered is a testament to the high product quality and the robust product development capability that Lane Tobiassen, President and Chief Executive Officer of Crimson Trace, and his team have established. That capability, combined with Crimson Trace’s leadership position in the market for laser sights, provides a solid framework for organic and inorganic growth.”   Lane Tobiassen, who joined Crimson Trace in 2005, will serve as President of the new Electro-Optics Division of Smith & Wesson, and will report directly to Debney. The Crimson Trace management team and workforce, as well as its base of operations, will remain in Wilsonville, Oregon after the acquisition.   Tobiassen said, “It is a great honor to lead Crimson Trace into this exciting new chapter in our history by joining the Smith & Wesson team. Since 1994, we have designed and brought to market more than 225 products, all of which reflect the passion, dedication, and spirit of innovation of our design engineers, production workforce, customer service representatives, and marketing and sales professionals. As the new Electro-Optics Division of Smith & Wesson, we believe that our capabilities, combined with inorganic opportunities to acquire related technologies, will expand the reach of our existing market footprint. This makes us a great fit for Smith & Wesson, a legendary company with an iconic brand, world-class products, and markets that include consumer, law enforcement, and international channels. We look forward to offering consumers exceptional performance from two of the industry’s most trusted names.” Smith & Wesson will purchase all of the outstanding stock of Crimson Trace for $95.0 million, using existing cash balances. Crimson Trace is being acquired from Crimson Trace Holdings, LLC, which is owned by private equity firms Peninsula Capital Partners, LLC and VergePointe Capital, LLC; Lewis Danielson, the founder and Chairman of the Board of Crimson Trace; a small group of minority members; and certain members of management. Jeffrey D. Buchanan, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Smith & Wesson, stated, “As a result of our strong balance sheet, we intend to complete the purchase of Crimson Trace with cash on hand and we expect the transaction to close in three to six weeks. After the closing date, we expect the acquisition to be accretive to Smith & Wesson’s earnings per share in fiscal 2017. Due to its anticipated timing, the transaction is expected to have no impact on Smith & Wesson’s operational and financial results for the fiscal 2017 first quarter ending July 31, 2016. As of the date of signing, Crimson Trace’s trailing 12 month revenue was approximately $44.0 million, of which approximately 25% was revenue from Smith & Wesson and would be excluded from our consolidated revenue. The purchase price represents an estimated multiple of approximately 5.9x the trailing 12 month adjusted EBITDAS of Crimson Trace. We look forward to providing additional details following the close of the transaction.” Cowen and Company, LLC is acting as exclusive financial advisor and Greenberg Traurig, LLP is acting as legal advisor to Smith & Wesson and its Board of Directors. Robert W. Baird & Co. is acting as exclusive financial advisor and K&L Gates LLP is acting as legal advisor to Crimson Trace and its owners.
    3 Posted by Chris Avena
  •                                                                     Smith & Wesson to Acquire Crimson Trace   Corporation Acquisition of Market Leader Provides Established Platform for Electro-Optics Business Smith & Wesson Establishes Fourth Division Closing Expected August 2016   SPRINGFIELD, Mass., July 25, 2016 -- Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: SWHC), a leading manufacturer of firearms and a provider of quality accessory products for the shooting, hunting, and rugged outdoor enthusiast, today announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Crimson Trace Corporation (Crimson Trace), the industry leader in laser sighting systems and tactical lighting for firearms, for $95.0 million, subject to certain adjustments, utilizing cash on hand.   Crimson Trace has long been a key supplier of laser sighting systems for Smith & Wesson. For more than two decades, Crimson Trace has provided consumers, military units, and law enforcement officers around the globe with the world’s largest selection of award-winning laser sight and tactical light products. Crimson Trace offers more than 225 products and is widely recognized as the world’s leading brand of laser sights for firearms. Its award-winning innovations include the Lasergrips®, Laserguard®, and Rail Master® platforms. The company’s product line also includes the Defender Series®, Lightguard®, and its new LiNQ™ wireless activation system. Based in Wilsonville, Oregon, Crimson Trace operates from a 50,000 square foot , leased facility where it engineers and manufactures its products.   Crimson Trace was founded 22 years ago and has organically generated a ten year compound annual revenue growth rate in excess of 10%. The company maintains a product development team that has an established track record of launching high-quality, innovative laser sighting products. As a result, its products maintain a premium position with hundreds of independent retailers as well as large sporting goods retailers, including Cabela’s, MidwayUSA, Nation’s Best Sports, and internet retailer Optics Planet, Inc.   James Debney, Smith & Wesson President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “Crimson Trace provides us with an exceptional opportunity to acquire a thriving company that is completely aligned with our strategy to become a leader in the market for shooting, hunting, and rugged outdoor enthusiasts. As the undisputed leader in the market for laser sighting products, Crimson Trace serves as an ideal platform for our new Electro-Optics Division. Firearms purchasers frequently buy electro-optic accessories to enhance the capabilities and performance of their firearms. The growth that Crimson Trace has delivered is a testament to the high product quality and the robust product development capability that Lane Tobiassen, President and Chief Executive Officer of Crimson Trace, and his team have established. That capability, combined with Crimson Trace’s leadership position in the market for laser sights, provides a solid framework for organic and inorganic growth.”   Lane Tobiassen, who joined Crimson Trace in 2005, will serve as President of the new Electro-Optics Division of Smith & Wesson, and will report directly to Debney. The Crimson Trace management team and workforce, as well as its base of operations, will remain in Wilsonville, Oregon after the acquisition.   Tobiassen said, “It is a great honor to lead Crimson Trace into this exciting new chapter in our history by joining the Smith & Wesson team. Since 1994, we have designed and brought to market more than 225 products, all of which reflect the passion, dedication, and spirit of innovation of our design engineers, production workforce, customer service representatives, and marketing and sales professionals. As the new Electro-Optics Division of Smith & Wesson, we believe that our capabilities, combined with inorganic opportunities to acquire related technologies, will expand the reach of our existing market footprint. This makes us a great fit for Smith & Wesson, a legendary company with an iconic brand, world-class products, and markets that include consumer, law enforcement, and international channels. We look forward to offering consumers exceptional performance from two of the industry’s most trusted names.” Smith & Wesson will purchase all of the outstanding stock of Crimson Trace for $95.0 million, using existing cash balances. Crimson Trace is being acquired from Crimson Trace Holdings, LLC, which is owned by private equity firms Peninsula Capital Partners, LLC and VergePointe Capital, LLC; Lewis Danielson, the founder and Chairman of the Board of Crimson Trace; a small group of minority members; and certain members of management. Jeffrey D. Buchanan, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Smith & Wesson, stated, “As a result of our strong balance sheet, we intend to complete the purchase of Crimson Trace with cash on hand and we expect the transaction to close in three to six weeks. After the closing date, we expect the acquisition to be accretive to Smith & Wesson’s earnings per share in fiscal 2017. Due to its anticipated timing, the transaction is expected to have no impact on Smith & Wesson’s operational and financial results for the fiscal 2017 first quarter ending July 31, 2016. As of the date of signing, Crimson Trace’s trailing 12 month revenue was approximately $44.0 million, of which approximately 25% was revenue from Smith & Wesson and would be excluded from our consolidated revenue. The purchase price represents an estimated multiple of approximately 5.9x the trailing 12 month adjusted EBITDAS of Crimson Trace. We look forward to providing additional details following the close of the transaction.” Cowen and Company, LLC is acting as exclusive financial advisor and Greenberg Traurig, LLP is acting as legal advisor to Smith & Wesson and its Board of Directors. Robert W. Baird & Co. is acting as exclusive financial advisor and K&L Gates LLP is acting as legal advisor to Crimson Trace and its owners.
    Jul 26, 2016 3
  • 04 Jul 2016
    We just got back from great adventure my client got his first of the big 5 cape buffalo!!He hunted with a 500 ne Heym dubbel. We did average of +- 20 km a day walking on the buff tracks. In the end hard work paid of. Cant wait too get back in Dark africa getting ready for the nexst hunting client. My hunting concessions Is based in Mozambique west opposite the kruger national park and Zimbabwe famous Gonarezou national park. dwanebooysen@gmail.com We have 2 tags left for Mozambique 10 days hunt Late 2016 special One hunter $9000.00 one Buff. 2 hunters 2 buffs &$16,000.00 This includes foood &drinks Laundry service skinner trackers Ph Accommodation Tags Government Tax Exclude Staff tips Shipping and dipping of trophy Transport to hunting Areas Gun inport
    9 Posted by Dwane Booysen Safaris
  • We just got back from great adventure my client got his first of the big 5 cape buffalo!!He hunted with a 500 ne Heym dubbel. We did average of +- 20 km a day walking on the buff tracks. In the end hard work paid of. Cant wait too get back in Dark africa getting ready for the nexst hunting client. My hunting concessions Is based in Mozambique west opposite the kruger national park and Zimbabwe famous Gonarezou national park. dwanebooysen@gmail.com We have 2 tags left for Mozambique 10 days hunt Late 2016 special One hunter $9000.00 one Buff. 2 hunters 2 buffs &$16,000.00 This includes foood &drinks Laundry service skinner trackers Ph Accommodation Tags Government Tax Exclude Staff tips Shipping and dipping of trophy Transport to hunting Areas Gun inport
    Jul 04, 2016 9
  • 17 Jun 2016
    Students, especially those in their graduate studies, will be required to write a dissertation before they graduate from their studies. The main aim of writing this paper is to satisfy your examiner that you have acquired the relevant knowledge that makes you an expert in a certain field of study. Usually, this paper is not an easy task. Many students find that coming up with the best thesis paper is quite a daunting endeavor. However, working on your thesis should not scare you at all. In case a student finds that he or she does not have what it takes to come up with a stunning paper, this ought not to shake him or her even the tiniest bit. All you need is a competent AussieWriter.   Thanks to the advances in tech especially in the field of information, a student can easily find all the help that he or she may need to come up with a compelling paper. Writing services are usually provided by several writing companies that can easily be found online. The writers who offer these services are thoroughly skilled and highly proficient. It is, therefore, guaranteed that any student who hires the services of these writing services will get outstanding papers. However, one must be ready to pay for these services since they might be a little bit expensive
    27 Posted by Cole Brianne
  • Students, especially those in their graduate studies, will be required to write a dissertation before they graduate from their studies. The main aim of writing this paper is to satisfy your examiner that you have acquired the relevant knowledge that makes you an expert in a certain field of study. Usually, this paper is not an easy task. Many students find that coming up with the best thesis paper is quite a daunting endeavor. However, working on your thesis should not scare you at all. In case a student finds that he or she does not have what it takes to come up with a stunning paper, this ought not to shake him or her even the tiniest bit. All you need is a competent AussieWriter.   Thanks to the advances in tech especially in the field of information, a student can easily find all the help that he or she may need to come up with a compelling paper. Writing services are usually provided by several writing companies that can easily be found online. The writers who offer these services are thoroughly skilled and highly proficient. It is, therefore, guaranteed that any student who hires the services of these writing services will get outstanding papers. However, one must be ready to pay for these services since they might be a little bit expensive
    Jun 17, 2016 27
  • 02 Jun 2016
    Find full article at http://huntspain.blogspot.com.es/ Hunting in Spain blog   We Spanish are a passionate lot to say the least and that passion most definitely extends to our love of nature and for hunting. Hunting traditions can be found entrenched in all levels of society and they are traditions that go back hundreds of years.  In fact, some say that the landlocked, mountainous position of our capital Madrid, is due to the Kings of old and their passion for hunting. Today, we can enjoy the same experiences as we hunt the big game species that can be found in Spains's spectacular and diverse wilderness: Wild Boar, Red Deer, Fallow Deer, Roe Deer, Spanish Ibex, Pyrenese Ibex (that we call Rebeco or Sarrio), Muflon, Fox, Wolf, as well as some other mountain goat species as is the case of the Arrui can all be hunted.   Big game hunting in Spain can be experienced in the following ways: - Stalking: Probably hunting in its most pure form. Consists of locating an animal, observing it, stalking it, and waiting for the best possible moment to harvest it. Stalks are done animal by animal, and with only one gun at a time. - Night Waits "Esperas": Only Wild Boar is hunted by this method which consists of waiting in the dead of night at the feeding ground, often timed for moonlit nights, where feeling the suspense and waiting for the right boar and the right moment to take the shot are something that all hunters should experience. - The “Monteria”: The quintessential Spanish form of big game hunting. It is a driven mountain hunt, with fixed pegs strategically positioned by the hunt organisers prior to the hunt. Groups of “rehalas” (groups of 25 dogs specialized for this type of hunt to drive game) make the game move around and out of the “mancha” - the designated area to hunt, which is often of extreme dense cover making in unpassable for the hunter.     It is important to select with care which monterias you want to participate in. Being a foreigner, particular attention should be taken, as being a visitor in a country accustomed to tourism, usually results in unfairly overcharging the “tourista”.. Things to consider prior to a monteria hunt…   • In a monteria shots are taken on the move, meaning that we shoot at running animals and normally at medium ranges (a maximum of 150m for a sure and safe kill).  For this style of hunt, calibers with significant stopping power are far better suited than high velocity calibers.  • You will have very little time to shoulder your weapon, take aim and fire very quickly. Knowing your weapon and equipment intimately is essential.  • It is not normal to have to walk a significant amount, but sometime peg locations take time to access, and with everything you need for a four or five hour wait, you must be prepared.  • In a typical monteria, you can expect to shoot 10 or 15 times if you have a lot of luck, but this, as in all forms of true hunting is in natures hands, and many a time a hunter has gone home disappointed but pleased to have been hunting without firing a single shot. • The hunt grounds are usually not open ground, so even first sighting the animal is no easy task. A hunters experience and insticts are put to the test. • The hunt season is from Autumn through winter, and although its Spain, you must come prepared for it can get cold, windy, rain and even snow.  • You have to stay put at your peg for the entire duration of the monteria – 4 to 5 hours normally, with it being absolutely forbidden to abandon your post for safety reasons.  • The dog packs “rehalas” are led by “rehaleros”, dog handlers, dressed in high visibility luminous colours as they advance with their dog packs through the cover driving the game and alerting hunters to the presence of game with typical shouts "alli va el guarro" a "there goes the boar"... • The pegs are numbered and a “hilera” or line of pegs forms an "armada" so that all pegs can be identified by the name of the armada and peg number.   • The “postor” is a hunter that is also working the hunt to ensure the safe conduct of the hunt. They place each hunter on their given peg, peg by peg, and may or may not advise you as to the angle of shot permitted – its good practice to always ask and double check you understand where you can and above all cannot shoot. In a similar way, at the end of the monteria, it is the postor that comes to collect you from your peg. 
     The Day of the Monteria Hunters are usually called to meet at around 9am for a typical hearty monteria breakfast of “migas y huevos” – fried bread with eggs, and the all important ritual ballot for peg positions. On arrival, you register with the required documentation with the hunt organisers (the “organica”) at the main table. You confirm your presence and verify that you are on the list of hunters places in the ballot for pegs. Normally, breakfast is taken while you wait for fellow hunters to slowly arrive, and this is a really pleasurable wait as you greet and catch up with old friends and share the expectation of the coming days action. There are few breakfasts that are more in tune to the coming days events than that of “migas con huevos” with a glass of red wine (if desired..).    After breakfast, the ballot for pegs begins. 
This is a moment of high expectations as you listen for your name to be called out, and you find out your peg not knowing whether you’ll get a peg to your liking (open for longer shots or closed for very close action) or whether it’s a peg where for this “mancha” – hunting area, is a peg that normally sees a lot of game.  The ballot normally has you approach the main table when your name is called, and you are asked to draw a ball from a bag (although there are many alternative ways to do this). You then select a closed unmarked envelop and find out which armada – line of pegs closing the hunting area, and which peg you have been allocated. It is important to ask to know who will be your “postor” – the hunt coordinator for your armada.       Once the ballot is completed, the armadas gather together and the order of leaving for the hunting grounds is determined. In summary, there are generally two types of armadas, “los cierres” and “las travesias”.  "Los Cierres": Comes from the Spanish verb “cerrar”,  meaning to close, and these peg lines mark the external limits of the hunting grounds. These are the peg lines that are the first to be placed, so that with vehicle and other noise game doesn’t abandon the hunting grounds.    Travesias: These are peg lines situated within the hunting grounds, normally in valleys so ensuring safety, and are the last to be placed.    
 Its generally good to find out from the postor what type of peg you’ve obtained in the ballot. For example, there could be open pegs with longer clear shots where its recommended to have a scope, or you could have a closed firebreak peg where shots can be at extremely close distance and where you hunt more by sound and instinct than by sight.  Depending on your peg, you may wish to change the only one weapon that is permitted from say a rifle to a shotgun with slugs. In these pegs, where the actionnia close, you get the excitement of hearing game come nearer and nearer, breaking through and giving you very few seconds to take the shot. In these pegs, a scope or shooting sticks are more of a hindrance than an aide.    
 At around 10:00 am (in the earliest cases) the armadas begin their way to each peg, almost always by car from the location of the breakfast and ballot. Peg by peg, the postor will position each hunter (and accompanying person if present) signaling where the dog packs will come from and where you can and cannot shoot.  This placement of each hunter is done with the minimal amount of noise possible, taking care with car doors and normally whispering to your fellow hunter a message of good luck as you leave him behind on his peg to get set and prepared.  Once at your peg, the very first thing is to do is to know the location of your neighbouring pegs, and make a signal to acknowledge that you have seen them, and they know also where you are. In the best circumstances, the pegs cannot be seen by one another, so maximizing safety. Once this is done, we load our rifles first, and then start looking at possible animal paths, trails, gaps where game could potentially pass. This is where a hunters experience and instincts start to come to the surface.  In these early minutes, before the dogs are released, the game usually moves a lot and we get the first opportunity to see game and perhaps take our first shot.  They are moment of high tension where adrenalin takes over and you think that you sense game and movement behind almost every shrub, bush, and tree in front of your peg.  Once all pegs are in place, the dog packs are released! It’s a magical moment in the Spanish monteria when you start to hear the dogs barking and making their way into the hunting grounds looking for and picking up the scent of game. These first barks are of pure excitement from the dogs as there are set free to run after game.  Its good to pay attention to the sound of the dogs; when they are high pitched they are passing through neighbouring pegs, but when they are together and become a growl, we know instantly that the dogs are onto game, not just the scent, but they have visual contact and are in pursuit. In many cases and where the dog packs are highly trained, the dogs catch up with and hold down game in an “agarre”. Varios dogs start to pin the game down until one summons up the bravery to try to launch a lethal attack. With both deer and wild boar they are tremendous encounters, with nothing surrendered, and where game normally escapes at full speed, offering incredible high excitement hunting for the lucky peg in question. These animals move at an incredible speed, breaking through the cover as fast as they can. With the adrenaline running high, you can be forgiven to feel that the whole ground is shaking. It’s the moment when the hunter is on foot and is in the animals territory. It’s the moment when the Spanish monteria confirms its unique place as one of the great hunting experiences.   Injured or older animals that can’t escape, end up facing their pursuers. An “agarre” with a big tusker can end the life of several dogs in a question of seconds. In these situations, the dog handlers, or the hunter if its near their peg, has to assess the situation, and enter the hunting ground to make the kill by hand with a knife. Never ever ever do you shoot at game that is held down. Firstly, due to the possibility of injuring ourselves or the dogs, secondly as a close range shot produces a terrible shock in the dogs, and many a time they develop a fear thereafter to hold down game ever again. These are not situations that are common nor easy to handle, in fact although they are a few seconds, they are seconds of great risk. In cases where you don’t know exactly what to do, it’s always better to wait for someone who does although the priority after safety is to dispatch the animal with the minimal suffering by locating the heart and with a special purpose double-edged knife that you should carry.  
 In these chases of dogs running after driven game, the game passes by or through the peg positions giving shooting opportunities to the hunters. The dogs usually conduct a well planned route going and returning, ensuring that all the game possible is driven around the hunting grounds.  At the end of the day’s hunting, at around 3pm or 4pm, you begin to hear the sound of the conch shells, the noise that each dog handler has to summon and gather his dogs. You will then see Spain’s famous hunting dogs emerge, tired, weary, often bloodied and wounded … the heroes of the day. You don’t leave your peg until the postor comes to collect you and lets you know its time to collect your things. You then start the route back to the place where lunch is awaiting and where all the harvested game is brought together in the “junta de carnes” for the posterior compulsory veterinary checks and then butchering for the meat to be sold and distributed.  The route back to lunch is typically the moment where first impressions between hunters are exchanged, about game seen, shots fired, game that has passed from one peg to another, or if the neighbouring pegs have seen a lot of action (or nothing at all!).  
Lunch typically comprises of a warm Spanish “ladel” dish that after a winters day hunt, is very welcomed. Lunch is where you sit down with friends and share experiences, observations, and is where the infamous “hunter’s tall tales” are born, where on the day a shot at 80m gets progressively longer as the weeks go by, and the animal harvested serms to grows in size! The Spanish monteria is all about passion and emotion and all your 5 senses are put to the test in the most intense of ways. The Spanish monteria is most definitely the timeless form of hunting in Spain and one where excitement is guaranteed. If you are a true hunter, a well organised monteria is something that should definitely be on your wish list. More often than not t will have you coming back for more and more…   Hunt safe, Happy Hunting! Hunt Spain.
    41 Posted by Joaquin De Lapatza
  • Find full article at http://huntspain.blogspot.com.es/ Hunting in Spain blog   We Spanish are a passionate lot to say the least and that passion most definitely extends to our love of nature and for hunting. Hunting traditions can be found entrenched in all levels of society and they are traditions that go back hundreds of years.  In fact, some say that the landlocked, mountainous position of our capital Madrid, is due to the Kings of old and their passion for hunting. Today, we can enjoy the same experiences as we hunt the big game species that can be found in Spains's spectacular and diverse wilderness: Wild Boar, Red Deer, Fallow Deer, Roe Deer, Spanish Ibex, Pyrenese Ibex (that we call Rebeco or Sarrio), Muflon, Fox, Wolf, as well as some other mountain goat species as is the case of the Arrui can all be hunted.   Big game hunting in Spain can be experienced in the following ways: - Stalking: Probably hunting in its most pure form. Consists of locating an animal, observing it, stalking it, and waiting for the best possible moment to harvest it. Stalks are done animal by animal, and with only one gun at a time. - Night Waits "Esperas": Only Wild Boar is hunted by this method which consists of waiting in the dead of night at the feeding ground, often timed for moonlit nights, where feeling the suspense and waiting for the right boar and the right moment to take the shot are something that all hunters should experience. - The “Monteria”: The quintessential Spanish form of big game hunting. It is a driven mountain hunt, with fixed pegs strategically positioned by the hunt organisers prior to the hunt. Groups of “rehalas” (groups of 25 dogs specialized for this type of hunt to drive game) make the game move around and out of the “mancha” - the designated area to hunt, which is often of extreme dense cover making in unpassable for the hunter.     It is important to select with care which monterias you want to participate in. Being a foreigner, particular attention should be taken, as being a visitor in a country accustomed to tourism, usually results in unfairly overcharging the “tourista”.. Things to consider prior to a monteria hunt…   • In a monteria shots are taken on the move, meaning that we shoot at running animals and normally at medium ranges (a maximum of 150m for a sure and safe kill).  For this style of hunt, calibers with significant stopping power are far better suited than high velocity calibers.  • You will have very little time to shoulder your weapon, take aim and fire very quickly. Knowing your weapon and equipment intimately is essential.  • It is not normal to have to walk a significant amount, but sometime peg locations take time to access, and with everything you need for a four or five hour wait, you must be prepared.  • In a typical monteria, you can expect to shoot 10 or 15 times if you have a lot of luck, but this, as in all forms of true hunting is in natures hands, and many a time a hunter has gone home disappointed but pleased to have been hunting without firing a single shot. • The hunt grounds are usually not open ground, so even first sighting the animal is no easy task. A hunters experience and insticts are put to the test. • The hunt season is from Autumn through winter, and although its Spain, you must come prepared for it can get cold, windy, rain and even snow.  • You have to stay put at your peg for the entire duration of the monteria – 4 to 5 hours normally, with it being absolutely forbidden to abandon your post for safety reasons.  • The dog packs “rehalas” are led by “rehaleros”, dog handlers, dressed in high visibility luminous colours as they advance with their dog packs through the cover driving the game and alerting hunters to the presence of game with typical shouts "alli va el guarro" a "there goes the boar"... • The pegs are numbered and a “hilera” or line of pegs forms an "armada" so that all pegs can be identified by the name of the armada and peg number.   • The “postor” is a hunter that is also working the hunt to ensure the safe conduct of the hunt. They place each hunter on their given peg, peg by peg, and may or may not advise you as to the angle of shot permitted – its good practice to always ask and double check you understand where you can and above all cannot shoot. In a similar way, at the end of the monteria, it is the postor that comes to collect you from your peg. 
     The Day of the Monteria Hunters are usually called to meet at around 9am for a typical hearty monteria breakfast of “migas y huevos” – fried bread with eggs, and the all important ritual ballot for peg positions. On arrival, you register with the required documentation with the hunt organisers (the “organica”) at the main table. You confirm your presence and verify that you are on the list of hunters places in the ballot for pegs. Normally, breakfast is taken while you wait for fellow hunters to slowly arrive, and this is a really pleasurable wait as you greet and catch up with old friends and share the expectation of the coming days action. There are few breakfasts that are more in tune to the coming days events than that of “migas con huevos” with a glass of red wine (if desired..).    After breakfast, the ballot for pegs begins. 
This is a moment of high expectations as you listen for your name to be called out, and you find out your peg not knowing whether you’ll get a peg to your liking (open for longer shots or closed for very close action) or whether it’s a peg where for this “mancha” – hunting area, is a peg that normally sees a lot of game.  The ballot normally has you approach the main table when your name is called, and you are asked to draw a ball from a bag (although there are many alternative ways to do this). You then select a closed unmarked envelop and find out which armada – line of pegs closing the hunting area, and which peg you have been allocated. It is important to ask to know who will be your “postor” – the hunt coordinator for your armada.       Once the ballot is completed, the armadas gather together and the order of leaving for the hunting grounds is determined. In summary, there are generally two types of armadas, “los cierres” and “las travesias”.  "Los Cierres": Comes from the Spanish verb “cerrar”,  meaning to close, and these peg lines mark the external limits of the hunting grounds. These are the peg lines that are the first to be placed, so that with vehicle and other noise game doesn’t abandon the hunting grounds.    Travesias: These are peg lines situated within the hunting grounds, normally in valleys so ensuring safety, and are the last to be placed.    
 Its generally good to find out from the postor what type of peg you’ve obtained in the ballot. For example, there could be open pegs with longer clear shots where its recommended to have a scope, or you could have a closed firebreak peg where shots can be at extremely close distance and where you hunt more by sound and instinct than by sight.  Depending on your peg, you may wish to change the only one weapon that is permitted from say a rifle to a shotgun with slugs. In these pegs, where the actionnia close, you get the excitement of hearing game come nearer and nearer, breaking through and giving you very few seconds to take the shot. In these pegs, a scope or shooting sticks are more of a hindrance than an aide.    
 At around 10:00 am (in the earliest cases) the armadas begin their way to each peg, almost always by car from the location of the breakfast and ballot. Peg by peg, the postor will position each hunter (and accompanying person if present) signaling where the dog packs will come from and where you can and cannot shoot.  This placement of each hunter is done with the minimal amount of noise possible, taking care with car doors and normally whispering to your fellow hunter a message of good luck as you leave him behind on his peg to get set and prepared.  Once at your peg, the very first thing is to do is to know the location of your neighbouring pegs, and make a signal to acknowledge that you have seen them, and they know also where you are. In the best circumstances, the pegs cannot be seen by one another, so maximizing safety. Once this is done, we load our rifles first, and then start looking at possible animal paths, trails, gaps where game could potentially pass. This is where a hunters experience and instincts start to come to the surface.  In these early minutes, before the dogs are released, the game usually moves a lot and we get the first opportunity to see game and perhaps take our first shot.  They are moment of high tension where adrenalin takes over and you think that you sense game and movement behind almost every shrub, bush, and tree in front of your peg.  Once all pegs are in place, the dog packs are released! It’s a magical moment in the Spanish monteria when you start to hear the dogs barking and making their way into the hunting grounds looking for and picking up the scent of game. These first barks are of pure excitement from the dogs as there are set free to run after game.  Its good to pay attention to the sound of the dogs; when they are high pitched they are passing through neighbouring pegs, but when they are together and become a growl, we know instantly that the dogs are onto game, not just the scent, but they have visual contact and are in pursuit. In many cases and where the dog packs are highly trained, the dogs catch up with and hold down game in an “agarre”. Varios dogs start to pin the game down until one summons up the bravery to try to launch a lethal attack. With both deer and wild boar they are tremendous encounters, with nothing surrendered, and where game normally escapes at full speed, offering incredible high excitement hunting for the lucky peg in question. These animals move at an incredible speed, breaking through the cover as fast as they can. With the adrenaline running high, you can be forgiven to feel that the whole ground is shaking. It’s the moment when the hunter is on foot and is in the animals territory. It’s the moment when the Spanish monteria confirms its unique place as one of the great hunting experiences.   Injured or older animals that can’t escape, end up facing their pursuers. An “agarre” with a big tusker can end the life of several dogs in a question of seconds. In these situations, the dog handlers, or the hunter if its near their peg, has to assess the situation, and enter the hunting ground to make the kill by hand with a knife. Never ever ever do you shoot at game that is held down. Firstly, due to the possibility of injuring ourselves or the dogs, secondly as a close range shot produces a terrible shock in the dogs, and many a time they develop a fear thereafter to hold down game ever again. These are not situations that are common nor easy to handle, in fact although they are a few seconds, they are seconds of great risk. In cases where you don’t know exactly what to do, it’s always better to wait for someone who does although the priority after safety is to dispatch the animal with the minimal suffering by locating the heart and with a special purpose double-edged knife that you should carry.  
 In these chases of dogs running after driven game, the game passes by or through the peg positions giving shooting opportunities to the hunters. The dogs usually conduct a well planned route going and returning, ensuring that all the game possible is driven around the hunting grounds.  At the end of the day’s hunting, at around 3pm or 4pm, you begin to hear the sound of the conch shells, the noise that each dog handler has to summon and gather his dogs. You will then see Spain’s famous hunting dogs emerge, tired, weary, often bloodied and wounded … the heroes of the day. You don’t leave your peg until the postor comes to collect you and lets you know its time to collect your things. You then start the route back to the place where lunch is awaiting and where all the harvested game is brought together in the “junta de carnes” for the posterior compulsory veterinary checks and then butchering for the meat to be sold and distributed.  The route back to lunch is typically the moment where first impressions between hunters are exchanged, about game seen, shots fired, game that has passed from one peg to another, or if the neighbouring pegs have seen a lot of action (or nothing at all!).  
Lunch typically comprises of a warm Spanish “ladel” dish that after a winters day hunt, is very welcomed. Lunch is where you sit down with friends and share experiences, observations, and is where the infamous “hunter’s tall tales” are born, where on the day a shot at 80m gets progressively longer as the weeks go by, and the animal harvested serms to grows in size! The Spanish monteria is all about passion and emotion and all your 5 senses are put to the test in the most intense of ways. The Spanish monteria is most definitely the timeless form of hunting in Spain and one where excitement is guaranteed. If you are a true hunter, a well organised monteria is something that should definitely be on your wish list. More often than not t will have you coming back for more and more…   Hunt safe, Happy Hunting! Hunt Spain.
    Jun 02, 2016 41
  • 26 May 2016
    Answering the Call “Who could be coming this early in the shift?”At the first glimmer of a light in the tunnel, I raised my safety glasses from their perch on my chin, up to where they were supposed to be. Over the roar of the drill, you couldn’t hear it, but I sensed the boss’s jeep pull up close (too close) and my little cave world lit up in the glare of headlights.The focus on my cap lamp jiggled and danced as I leaned hard on the drill, exaggerating the effort. Working the final, of 7 long graveyard shifts underground , I was nearly played out. His shadow loomed across the face, then, over mine and the spot of his Mag-light flitted around the workplace, looking for trouble. I peered back over the rim of mud caked lenses, hoping he hadn’t found any. He smiled. Nodded his head appreciatively and gave me the thumbs up!I leaned in again, thinking "Good shifter, that Curtis! Silent supervision."That's when he tapped my shoulder and handed over the note. “CALL HOME A.S.A.P.” How many times had I asked her not to call me at work unless it was an emergency? I hope everyone is O.K.... Curtis sensed my urgency and gave me a lift up to the lunchroom, where I made the call. Boy, what a woman I’ve got! It seems that the outfitter, where my wife worked, had a bull moose tag available for the archery season in a nearby zone. I could fly in, at a discounted price, if we’d construct a camp frame for his bookings that were to hunt in the rifle season. I had recently purchased a new crossbow and, though we had never bow hunted, Alan, my brother in law and hunting buddy, was available and a nice compound. It would be a five day hunt (weather pending). “But,” she stated “You’ll have to leave tomorrow, and he’s gotta know tonight! Do you want to go?????" So, you see, it really was an emergency! My fellow miners were envious at lunch time, once everything was confirmed. Many were northern boys, like me, with keen hunting blood in ‘em. Frosts were heavy most mornings now, and there were still ten days till we could gun hunt. And in 10 days, we’d be back in here, slavin’ at work. Yeah, the fellas were itchin’ pretty bad, once I rubbed it in. A lot!. I drove home from that mine like a man possessed, a violent stream of dust, howling due south into the rising sun! Sneaking up a little early at the end of shift, I blew out the gate ten minutes ahead of anyone. The roadway kicks up a blanket of gray stuff that rises thick, and very slowly fades to hang, like fog, over the northern lowlands. No one would catch me today. Two hours to civilization. Four hours, home. Hammer down!I rustled the feathers of a few road partridge as I flew into the dawn that day. No time to stop. I had bigger fish to fry. Saw a cow and calf scamper to the bushline and hardly touched the brakes. Sorta’ in a hurry! An hour out, I hit flat hard pavement and stepped on it a bit. The sky was lit with orange and pink wisps of high cloud. A good sign!I daydreamed of hunts past, and started to get pumped. I am a Hamilton lad who let the fickle road of life take him north, at 18 years old, to expansive waterways and wilderness. Mining and money led me away and now the bush has me in its grip. From hunting bullfrogs and squirrel, to moose and bear, it's quite a transition. Success was limited, at first. Luck would flourish periodically. But, living and working in the moose’s back yard, certainly has it’s benefits! Like hunting almost daily for six weeks, or a quick hunt on the way to work. Or getting one, on the way home. Spend a lot of time in the bush and opportunity will come your way. I credit the tag allocation system for much of my knowledge regarding moose behavior. In my early hunting years, one could shoot any kind of moose and they could be brought down two and three at a time. If you saw a moose you simply shot at it. Now, we must often watch cows, calves and bulls interact with each other, with other animals, and with humans. These observations evolve into insight and intuition that can add a great deal to one's success rating. Still, "many a moose made a monkey out of me." But each failure brought new insight, and each kill greater confidence. My, soon to be, father in law, was inspirational in those early hunting years. A true northern Ontario Ojibway, he was born in the bush and his youth was hunting, fishing and trapping. Wise in the ways of the moose, (world calling champ 1964) he straightened me out on many an issue. Our outings were always a lesson and an adventure and, most often, successful. In his later years he would pour over the maps with us, listening to our daily results and give great advice for tomorrow’s hunt. A Zen Moose Master. Sadly, he’s now hunting in a far better world and, thanks to him, I’m a better hunter in this one. I was home at 8:30 in the morning. A 3 ½ hour trip out. Funny, after seven long days in the bush, I was dying to head right back into her. The wife had my sleeping bag rolled and a selection of hunting clothes laid out on the couch. She gave a status report on the arrangements and supplies while I threw them into a hockey bag and wolfed down a beer and toasted western. What a woman I’ve got! Kissed her thanks, and goodbye, and thanks again, and I was off and on the dock by nine. Alan was transferring lumber out to the waiting Beaver. George Theriault, our outfitter host and pilot, was handling load placement along with Andre, a carpenter friend of ours. Both he and Alan had worked with George at one time or another, so it wasn’t long before we taxied out onto the lake, smooth as glass, and powered up. Andre and I flew in with the first load without Al, as surely the big fella would have put us over the load limit! As it was, we took a long run before lifting off and rising, ever so slowly, into the western sky. Banking right, we climbed northwest on a picture perfect fall morning. The landscape below was a splash of paisley, gold, orange and green, with ominous dark patches of bush still in shadow. Pothole lakes wore a faint mist of gray that glistened snow white where the rising sun met the western shore. The sky was cloudless. We passed over my usual moose hunting area and I stared down, fascinated, comparing the scene to what I had perceived from ground level. I spotted a brand new pocket of prime real estate, seemingly, just a short walk to the west. Scouring the brushlines, I caught a quick glimpse of faint paths running along the edge of the cut. And quickly , the scene was behind and lost, but not forgotten. Insight from 2000 feet. We began our descent fifteen minutes out, as we crossed the broad expanse of Kap Lake and picked up the C.N. Line. A bright red-headed southbound freight snaked out below us and the heat from its three mighty engines distorted the scene below. More than a mile long, it wound in and out of view, flashing here and there through the trees. But it was soon behind and I returned to the panorama ahead. That sinking feeling was now in full effect and contours of the landscape became evident, as a monster hill loomed to the north. We skirted south of it, our shadow racing across the hillside ahead of us. George banked sharply right and bore down on a banana shaped lake, curled in the mountain’s shadow, that was just catching its first rays the of the day. A ghostly mist scurried and parted as the pontoons touched water in a quick, smooth landing. We taxied to a rocky point on the western shore and blew away the fog that was rising into the quickly warming forest. A thin frosted trail led uphill from a small dock that was sheltered by the point. Lumber, supplies, and two adventurers were unceremoniously dumped on the rocks and the Beaver was roaring back into the morning sun in minutes. Andre and I were just-a-grinnin! We sucked in a hearty breath of fresh energy and just got at ‘er. When George zoomed in, 90 minutes, later with another full load, plus Big Al, we had already carted load #1 to the camping area and set up housekeeping. The new gear was baled off of the plane and Andre bailed wonderful fresh, hot coffee. George sat down and mapped out the lay of the land, the location of our boat and canoe, and arranged a fly by for Friday. Al and Andre were reminded of the carpentry at hand, and with a big smiles all around, our pilot was up and gone. It was half past eleven . Chainsaws wailed and hammers rang throughout the day, as we cleared a spot for the campframe, cut firewood and shored up our own tent and facilities. Breaks were taken regularly. We pulled out the bows and a target was set up in the length of the clearing. My little Horton Legend was broken out of it’s box and bolts were readied with broadheads, leaving one with a field tip for practicing. Choosing a neutral sight, I was quickly on the board, but after a few pin adjustments, I found the range and could center hit a paper plate regularly over the twenty-five yard distance. I was impressed by Al’s shooting (for never having hunted with a bow). We also learned that each third cast or so, from the rocky point, brought in a follower or landed a scrappy two or three pound pike. So, even with big Al here, we would not run short of food! During a mid-afternoon super-sandwich break, Al pulled a moose calling tape out of his pack and we listened, laughed and critiqued the whole thing. We started exchanging stories of calls and answers and heart-pounding near misses, and that was it! There would be no more working today. A tour of the lake was in order. Our rocky point lay in the middle of the outside curve on the mile long, shallow lake. It was perhaps 200 yards directly across to the opposite shore, where the large ridge of tall birch and poplar rose sharply. It dominated the eastern horizon for the length of the lake and carried on south, highlighting a creek valley that ran into our lake. At the north end, the ridge flattened to a nice looking hayfield with a small creek running through. Moose Heaven! The ridge would bounce sound wonderfully and I wondered if the moose here had even heard a hunter’s call. A little four-horse pushed three men in a car topper to the south end, where I was surprised to see a rickety old stand, high in a large cedar. Countless tracks littered the sandy beach and weedbeds, offshore, had been trashed by feeding moose. A well worn trail ran along a nearby grassy shoreline The stand wasn’t ideal, but good shots were certainly possible. I vowed to bring back a saw and open up some shooting lanes.Small boulders at the water’s edge made the eastern shoreline a difficult walk for moose, but just inland, a moose highway had been pounded into the moss. Near the northern end , tag alders and a thin hayfield bordered a narrow, sandy bay and outlet creek. Trials crisscrossed everywhere. The main highway ran directly beneath one very old, very dead, leaning cedar. Feeble rungs led to a thin platform, which perched questionably on a bare limb on the upper side of the tree. Finger thin railings, to guard against falls, were held together with faded, brittle twine. This was a very old stand. Perhaps the tree was alive when it was used, but now there was little cover in its scraggly branches. I figured if a guy brought some extra boughs with him, it would still be a dandy spot. The big fella volunteered to go up and Andre and I struggled not to laugh as the smooth, white trunk sagged and groaned under his weight. But, he made it to the perch and gingerly tested its soundness. He was wearing the dirty white-gray jogging suit that he’d been working in all day and I told him he looked pretty good up there in his pyjamas, ‘cause they blended well with the dead cedar. He smiled, “Oh yeah, I’ll take this one!” It was after 5, by the time we patrolled the northern shoreline back to camp. Al and I quickly geared up and fired a last practice shot. Though he did not hunt, Andre said he was pumped up just watching our growing excitement and seeing all the evidence of moose nearby. Good feed and sign were everywhere. No one had hunted here in years, and the weather was unbeatable. I hadn’t seen a cloud all day. A light breeze was, just now, dying and though it had warmed considerably through the day, bringing out more than a few hungry pests, a definite chill was now in the air along with the promise of a heavy frost for the morning. The sun was dropping to the treetops as Al and I paddled silently up to the north end. I figured on dropping him at his stand in the hay, then stroking halfway back, making a call, and heading to the south stand. After that, he and I would both call. The canoe bottomed out twenty feet from shore. It was dead calm, and each splash, knock and step, bounced around the bay as I pushed away. Al’s labored breath carried across the reeds and I laughed again on hearing the cedar creak and groan. Looking back, Pyjama Boy was up and, somehow, vaguely hidden against the twilight. He took his orange hat off, and I almost lost him. It was incredible. No cover or cammo, and he was barely visible! Little noises, the rustle of my coat, reeds against the gunnel, swirls behind my paddle, each pained my ears while I slowly stroked the weedline back for about 200 yards and drifted to a stop. I managed to stow the paddle silently and did the long listen. The sun was almost down and, looking west, the shoreline was dark and indecernable. Andre was standing on the dock a ways to the south, but to see directly across was futile. Orange above, black below. My ears rang already. A deep breath, a muffled cough into my hand, a little listen, another breath and I called. Long and low, back to the hayfield. And again, pleading to the hillside. My eyes watered from the effort and my pulse pounded in stereo, but I heard it. Right away. Where, what? I wasn’t sure. Yep, there it was, a distant “pop”, west, in the blackness. Or was it my belly? I strained forward, to close the distance, and pointed one ear. Four beats of my heart and, snap, the branch that only a moose could break. Unreal! This is it! Red Alert! I waved frantically to Pyjama Boy. Why? I couldn’t even see him! It seemed to be a fair distance off, across the lake, in the dark, low lying bush. But, from the uniform, well spaced answers and frequent crashes, it was obvious that he was on his way, and determined. While he was moving fast, I backstroked towards shore, beached, deftly grabbed the Legend and tiptoed, through 6 inches of water, to the alder cover on land. Suddenly breathless, I took refuge in a lovely trio of boulders at water’s edge, huffing like a locomotive. His distant pop had become a subtle bark, descending, quietly now, to lake level. Caution had entered his mind as he closed on the opening and, though his footfalls had stopped, the barking was steady, at 20 second intervals. My eyes were useless, but I felt his big ears scoping across the lake. He was locked on to this locale and I dared not move. A waiting game. All was still, and he called no more. The silence was electric. Sitting in the rocks, one leg started to vibrate. My leg was electric! But I’m good at that game, and in the state I was in, knew better than to try a call. Instead, I poked around for a thin stick of driftwood, and snapped it sharply in the air. The report echoed back from the far shore, almost overlapped by a coarse “woooff” and crush of branches. Within seconds, he was stepping in the shallow water. I could only imagine his impressive rack, striding proudly, wading straight out towards me. The splashes deepened with the water, as did the tension, for it seemed he was soon to be swimming across and I had yet to see him. There was plenty of hunting light remaining and though I was blind to that direction, he would have a better view. My canoe floated ten critical yards offshore, directly in line. A move was required. The moose had stopped, knee deep, I suppose, and was staring me down. I figured the next time he moved, I would too, along the shore, north, closer to Al. If he swam the lake I’d try to pull him to where one of us may get a shot. The wait seemed forever, but at last, he grunted and stepped out once again and, on his third splash, I trotted four quick steps. He stopped and I sloshed four more, pulling up beside an overhanging alder. He was in motion again, but seemed to have more spring in his step and I realized that he had turned and now paralleled me as I looked north. Either he had spooked or decided to circle the lake. But his steps were plodding and steady and he called often, and, deep inside, I heaved a sigh of relief. He was coming around and I was pretty sure I could drag him past my partner. Time was the only factor. I had to keep him moving.I tugged the brim of my hat down to shield against the bright sky and stared hard at the sounds coming from the far shore. A hulking shape loomed out of the darkness, floating like a black ghost against the treeline. He sloshed along, ten yards offshore, becoming more defined as the background bush dropped to the horizon. Covered by his noise, I hop-scotched from boulder to boulder, making good time while staying close to shore, but soon ran out of rocks and had to stop. He plodded on until a brushy point jutted out, blocked his way. Sensing him roll his head around to listen, I swished the water with one boot while gulping my best calf call. At that, he “woofed” heavily and plowed onto the point, disappearing, but emerged shortly, on the waterfront, and stopped where the thin strip of hay began, highlighting his silhouette. The head was tilted back, long nose high, and, when he lowered it, a small tight rack was noticeable. I rustled some alders with my free hand and mewed as a calf until he moved once more. And so it went, alternating steps, call and answer, up opposing shorelines into the bay. Each call became easier as my voice loosened and confidence rose. But his treks grew shorter, stops more frequent. These stalls were painfully quiet and testing. A thousand crickets seemed to ring in my ears. Dare a call? Swirl a foot or shake a tree? One errant sound and he could be off. Pounding pulse and patience. Often, pure silence coaxed him on, and a bark, loud and gruff, would explode, in time with his first step, and echo across the bay. Moving and halting with the moose, for the better part of an hour, I had worked myself into a fine position, beneath a clump of alder, 60 yards from Pyjama Boy. I could vaguely see his pale figure, crouching in the stand, against the quickly darkening sky. The young bull, contrasted, bold and black against the hay, was broadside less than 100 yards beyond, steam spouting from his upturned nostrils as his head nodded slowly in a small circle, searching for a scent. His ears, standing at attention, focused on my hideout. The silence was deafening. One last delicate barrier lay twenty yards ahead of him. The outlet creek, 10 yards wide, the outer limit of Al’s shooting range. If only I could move him across. And soon.Our silent staredown dragged painfully . He stood motionless. Frozen, stone still. And I gave in.Grabbing a handful of brush, I gave it a gentle shake, then, cracked the heaviest branch. “WHOOOF” The entire body of the bull convulsed, as he let out a thunderous grunt and trotted the short distance to the creek. The deep roar had scarcely bounced from the hills and back to my ears when he jerked to a stop at the bank. I rattled the bush again. Instantly, he roared and shook and, to my dismay, turned and ran down stream, out of sight. I gave a desperate call, loud and pleading, and heard his splashing hooves, going away. My heart dropped. Then, pounding through the grass, there he was, on our side, barreling right down the trail towards me. I’m not sure why, if he saw me or smelled pyjamas, but he halted, dead in his tracks, straight under Al. I saw Al draw, heard a whir and a whack, and that bull spun on a dime and plunged, headlong, into the deep creek and lumbered up the other side to shake off, exactly where he had stood a few short seconds earlier. With a disgusted look back, he trotted away through the hay. Twigs rustled and snapped as he hit the bush. Then all was silent. Except for the heartbeats. Again, I waved my arms frantically at Al, hoping for some kind of response, but I guess he’s not much on sign language. So I strained my ears for a short while then, carefully, slipped along the shore and waited for him to come down the bare cedar. He had stayed up to listen and now was having a hard time descending. He was wide-eyed, quivering noticeably, and gasping as he tried to whisper.“Unreal” was all he could manage.“Did you get him?” I had to ask.“Better than sex” he babbled, “never been so excited!” “Did you get him?” “Oh yeah, stuck him good! Up here!” And he reached around for the part of his back that he couldn’t reach. “ Just the feathers left sticking’ out! Buried it. Was gonna take another shot when he stopped there, but couldn’t get it off! Last I heard him, he crashed thru that feed over there and that was it!” Al pointed down the creek to where it bent around a thick tangle of red willow. “I’m pretty sure he’s dead meat! Man, that was something else!I pumped his big mitt and slapped up at his shoulder. “Exxxcellent!”Al rambled on. “I thought we’d lost him when he took off that last time. He musta’ known it was shallow over there. Drew on him as he ran in, the railing was in the way. I had to get up on my toes to shoot. Couldn’t really aim, I just shot. Man, oh man. Un******real.” It was last light and we briefly searched for blood at the scene of the crime. None could be found and I left Allen flicking his bic and slogged back to retrieve the canoe. From the sparkle in his eye and smile on his face, I was confident there was a moose down, somewhere, across that creek. By the time I stroked in, Al was at the water, on the trail, with no blood yet. Thick gouges and craters scarred the other bank where the bull had hauled up and out. Al jumped in and I swung him across. No blood. It was hard to pick out the proper set of tracks, given the number at hand, but the thin crystal frost, quickly forming on the grass, had been disturbed in his wake and we found a couple small dots of red a short distance from shore. On finding a second patch of blood, I placed my hat over it and we retreated to the canoe and paddled hard for home. Man, I was thirsty! It was a moonless, starlit night. Marvelous. Andre waited by a small fire at camp. He had heard it all! The grunts and bellows, snapping and splashing, and was completely amazed. He was nearly as excited as the two of us. We hurriedly told him the story, so far, while gulping down an ice cold beer and rounding up lights, rope and axe. And we all piled into the boat and motored back up the lake to pick up the trail. It had been forty minutes since the shot. We must have been quite a sight that night, in the hay. Three of us, side by side, puffing steam. Ice crystals sparkled all around. Al sported a miner’s type cap lamp and gripped two hands on my cocked crossbow. I walked slightly ahead, Coleman lamp held high, axe at the ready. Andre waved a Maglight, sweeping for eyes, far ahead, side to side. The blood trail was scarce, but steady. One or two drops every five yards. The swath through the frosted grass gave us a good look ahead and the trail was never lost. It led into the patch of willow and we found our prize laying just on the other side. A three year old bull with a chunky little rack. Allen’s arrow had worked its way out the bottom of the belly. The feathers no longer adorned his back. His final run had covered less than 100 yards. We raised a little cheer, did a little dance, and made quick work of gutting him, leaving the tip of his heart on a nearby branch. (a tradition passed from my late father-in-law) With our moose propped open under a cloud of rising steam, we headed back, starry eyed, into that marvelous night. The next afternoon brought 3 days of warm rain, but our spirits were never dampened. George popped in Friday, as scheduled, and flew our quartered moose out, to hang in the cooler at the lodge. The bows were stored away, and the camp frame was completed. One quiet morning, a young bull chased a cow and calf along the far shore. Wanting nothing to do with him, she clipped along thirty yards ahead, each splashing hoof sending up a little rainbow. We found some time to catch a few fish and fix up tree stands and shooting lanes. The old bare cedar was deemed worthy and left untouched, ready for the next brave hunter Monday morning, under heavily overcast skies and steady drizzle, the Beaver came and three happy campers were homeward bound, jam packed with memories..  
    38 Posted by Jodi Cullen
  • Answering the Call “Who could be coming this early in the shift?”At the first glimmer of a light in the tunnel, I raised my safety glasses from their perch on my chin, up to where they were supposed to be. Over the roar of the drill, you couldn’t hear it, but I sensed the boss’s jeep pull up close (too close) and my little cave world lit up in the glare of headlights.The focus on my cap lamp jiggled and danced as I leaned hard on the drill, exaggerating the effort. Working the final, of 7 long graveyard shifts underground , I was nearly played out. His shadow loomed across the face, then, over mine and the spot of his Mag-light flitted around the workplace, looking for trouble. I peered back over the rim of mud caked lenses, hoping he hadn’t found any. He smiled. Nodded his head appreciatively and gave me the thumbs up!I leaned in again, thinking "Good shifter, that Curtis! Silent supervision."That's when he tapped my shoulder and handed over the note. “CALL HOME A.S.A.P.” How many times had I asked her not to call me at work unless it was an emergency? I hope everyone is O.K.... Curtis sensed my urgency and gave me a lift up to the lunchroom, where I made the call. Boy, what a woman I’ve got! It seems that the outfitter, where my wife worked, had a bull moose tag available for the archery season in a nearby zone. I could fly in, at a discounted price, if we’d construct a camp frame for his bookings that were to hunt in the rifle season. I had recently purchased a new crossbow and, though we had never bow hunted, Alan, my brother in law and hunting buddy, was available and a nice compound. It would be a five day hunt (weather pending). “But,” she stated “You’ll have to leave tomorrow, and he’s gotta know tonight! Do you want to go?????" So, you see, it really was an emergency! My fellow miners were envious at lunch time, once everything was confirmed. Many were northern boys, like me, with keen hunting blood in ‘em. Frosts were heavy most mornings now, and there were still ten days till we could gun hunt. And in 10 days, we’d be back in here, slavin’ at work. Yeah, the fellas were itchin’ pretty bad, once I rubbed it in. A lot!. I drove home from that mine like a man possessed, a violent stream of dust, howling due south into the rising sun! Sneaking up a little early at the end of shift, I blew out the gate ten minutes ahead of anyone. The roadway kicks up a blanket of gray stuff that rises thick, and very slowly fades to hang, like fog, over the northern lowlands. No one would catch me today. Two hours to civilization. Four hours, home. Hammer down!I rustled the feathers of a few road partridge as I flew into the dawn that day. No time to stop. I had bigger fish to fry. Saw a cow and calf scamper to the bushline and hardly touched the brakes. Sorta’ in a hurry! An hour out, I hit flat hard pavement and stepped on it a bit. The sky was lit with orange and pink wisps of high cloud. A good sign!I daydreamed of hunts past, and started to get pumped. I am a Hamilton lad who let the fickle road of life take him north, at 18 years old, to expansive waterways and wilderness. Mining and money led me away and now the bush has me in its grip. From hunting bullfrogs and squirrel, to moose and bear, it's quite a transition. Success was limited, at first. Luck would flourish periodically. But, living and working in the moose’s back yard, certainly has it’s benefits! Like hunting almost daily for six weeks, or a quick hunt on the way to work. Or getting one, on the way home. Spend a lot of time in the bush and opportunity will come your way. I credit the tag allocation system for much of my knowledge regarding moose behavior. In my early hunting years, one could shoot any kind of moose and they could be brought down two and three at a time. If you saw a moose you simply shot at it. Now, we must often watch cows, calves and bulls interact with each other, with other animals, and with humans. These observations evolve into insight and intuition that can add a great deal to one's success rating. Still, "many a moose made a monkey out of me." But each failure brought new insight, and each kill greater confidence. My, soon to be, father in law, was inspirational in those early hunting years. A true northern Ontario Ojibway, he was born in the bush and his youth was hunting, fishing and trapping. Wise in the ways of the moose, (world calling champ 1964) he straightened me out on many an issue. Our outings were always a lesson and an adventure and, most often, successful. In his later years he would pour over the maps with us, listening to our daily results and give great advice for tomorrow’s hunt. A Zen Moose Master. Sadly, he’s now hunting in a far better world and, thanks to him, I’m a better hunter in this one. I was home at 8:30 in the morning. A 3 ½ hour trip out. Funny, after seven long days in the bush, I was dying to head right back into her. The wife had my sleeping bag rolled and a selection of hunting clothes laid out on the couch. She gave a status report on the arrangements and supplies while I threw them into a hockey bag and wolfed down a beer and toasted western. What a woman I’ve got! Kissed her thanks, and goodbye, and thanks again, and I was off and on the dock by nine. Alan was transferring lumber out to the waiting Beaver. George Theriault, our outfitter host and pilot, was handling load placement along with Andre, a carpenter friend of ours. Both he and Alan had worked with George at one time or another, so it wasn’t long before we taxied out onto the lake, smooth as glass, and powered up. Andre and I flew in with the first load without Al, as surely the big fella would have put us over the load limit! As it was, we took a long run before lifting off and rising, ever so slowly, into the western sky. Banking right, we climbed northwest on a picture perfect fall morning. The landscape below was a splash of paisley, gold, orange and green, with ominous dark patches of bush still in shadow. Pothole lakes wore a faint mist of gray that glistened snow white where the rising sun met the western shore. The sky was cloudless. We passed over my usual moose hunting area and I stared down, fascinated, comparing the scene to what I had perceived from ground level. I spotted a brand new pocket of prime real estate, seemingly, just a short walk to the west. Scouring the brushlines, I caught a quick glimpse of faint paths running along the edge of the cut. And quickly , the scene was behind and lost, but not forgotten. Insight from 2000 feet. We began our descent fifteen minutes out, as we crossed the broad expanse of Kap Lake and picked up the C.N. Line. A bright red-headed southbound freight snaked out below us and the heat from its three mighty engines distorted the scene below. More than a mile long, it wound in and out of view, flashing here and there through the trees. But it was soon behind and I returned to the panorama ahead. That sinking feeling was now in full effect and contours of the landscape became evident, as a monster hill loomed to the north. We skirted south of it, our shadow racing across the hillside ahead of us. George banked sharply right and bore down on a banana shaped lake, curled in the mountain’s shadow, that was just catching its first rays the of the day. A ghostly mist scurried and parted as the pontoons touched water in a quick, smooth landing. We taxied to a rocky point on the western shore and blew away the fog that was rising into the quickly warming forest. A thin frosted trail led uphill from a small dock that was sheltered by the point. Lumber, supplies, and two adventurers were unceremoniously dumped on the rocks and the Beaver was roaring back into the morning sun in minutes. Andre and I were just-a-grinnin! We sucked in a hearty breath of fresh energy and just got at ‘er. When George zoomed in, 90 minutes, later with another full load, plus Big Al, we had already carted load #1 to the camping area and set up housekeeping. The new gear was baled off of the plane and Andre bailed wonderful fresh, hot coffee. George sat down and mapped out the lay of the land, the location of our boat and canoe, and arranged a fly by for Friday. Al and Andre were reminded of the carpentry at hand, and with a big smiles all around, our pilot was up and gone. It was half past eleven . Chainsaws wailed and hammers rang throughout the day, as we cleared a spot for the campframe, cut firewood and shored up our own tent and facilities. Breaks were taken regularly. We pulled out the bows and a target was set up in the length of the clearing. My little Horton Legend was broken out of it’s box and bolts were readied with broadheads, leaving one with a field tip for practicing. Choosing a neutral sight, I was quickly on the board, but after a few pin adjustments, I found the range and could center hit a paper plate regularly over the twenty-five yard distance. I was impressed by Al’s shooting (for never having hunted with a bow). We also learned that each third cast or so, from the rocky point, brought in a follower or landed a scrappy two or three pound pike. So, even with big Al here, we would not run short of food! During a mid-afternoon super-sandwich break, Al pulled a moose calling tape out of his pack and we listened, laughed and critiqued the whole thing. We started exchanging stories of calls and answers and heart-pounding near misses, and that was it! There would be no more working today. A tour of the lake was in order. Our rocky point lay in the middle of the outside curve on the mile long, shallow lake. It was perhaps 200 yards directly across to the opposite shore, where the large ridge of tall birch and poplar rose sharply. It dominated the eastern horizon for the length of the lake and carried on south, highlighting a creek valley that ran into our lake. At the north end, the ridge flattened to a nice looking hayfield with a small creek running through. Moose Heaven! The ridge would bounce sound wonderfully and I wondered if the moose here had even heard a hunter’s call. A little four-horse pushed three men in a car topper to the south end, where I was surprised to see a rickety old stand, high in a large cedar. Countless tracks littered the sandy beach and weedbeds, offshore, had been trashed by feeding moose. A well worn trail ran along a nearby grassy shoreline The stand wasn’t ideal, but good shots were certainly possible. I vowed to bring back a saw and open up some shooting lanes.Small boulders at the water’s edge made the eastern shoreline a difficult walk for moose, but just inland, a moose highway had been pounded into the moss. Near the northern end , tag alders and a thin hayfield bordered a narrow, sandy bay and outlet creek. Trials crisscrossed everywhere. The main highway ran directly beneath one very old, very dead, leaning cedar. Feeble rungs led to a thin platform, which perched questionably on a bare limb on the upper side of the tree. Finger thin railings, to guard against falls, were held together with faded, brittle twine. This was a very old stand. Perhaps the tree was alive when it was used, but now there was little cover in its scraggly branches. I figured if a guy brought some extra boughs with him, it would still be a dandy spot. The big fella volunteered to go up and Andre and I struggled not to laugh as the smooth, white trunk sagged and groaned under his weight. But, he made it to the perch and gingerly tested its soundness. He was wearing the dirty white-gray jogging suit that he’d been working in all day and I told him he looked pretty good up there in his pyjamas, ‘cause they blended well with the dead cedar. He smiled, “Oh yeah, I’ll take this one!” It was after 5, by the time we patrolled the northern shoreline back to camp. Al and I quickly geared up and fired a last practice shot. Though he did not hunt, Andre said he was pumped up just watching our growing excitement and seeing all the evidence of moose nearby. Good feed and sign were everywhere. No one had hunted here in years, and the weather was unbeatable. I hadn’t seen a cloud all day. A light breeze was, just now, dying and though it had warmed considerably through the day, bringing out more than a few hungry pests, a definite chill was now in the air along with the promise of a heavy frost for the morning. The sun was dropping to the treetops as Al and I paddled silently up to the north end. I figured on dropping him at his stand in the hay, then stroking halfway back, making a call, and heading to the south stand. After that, he and I would both call. The canoe bottomed out twenty feet from shore. It was dead calm, and each splash, knock and step, bounced around the bay as I pushed away. Al’s labored breath carried across the reeds and I laughed again on hearing the cedar creak and groan. Looking back, Pyjama Boy was up and, somehow, vaguely hidden against the twilight. He took his orange hat off, and I almost lost him. It was incredible. No cover or cammo, and he was barely visible! Little noises, the rustle of my coat, reeds against the gunnel, swirls behind my paddle, each pained my ears while I slowly stroked the weedline back for about 200 yards and drifted to a stop. I managed to stow the paddle silently and did the long listen. The sun was almost down and, looking west, the shoreline was dark and indecernable. Andre was standing on the dock a ways to the south, but to see directly across was futile. Orange above, black below. My ears rang already. A deep breath, a muffled cough into my hand, a little listen, another breath and I called. Long and low, back to the hayfield. And again, pleading to the hillside. My eyes watered from the effort and my pulse pounded in stereo, but I heard it. Right away. Where, what? I wasn’t sure. Yep, there it was, a distant “pop”, west, in the blackness. Or was it my belly? I strained forward, to close the distance, and pointed one ear. Four beats of my heart and, snap, the branch that only a moose could break. Unreal! This is it! Red Alert! I waved frantically to Pyjama Boy. Why? I couldn’t even see him! It seemed to be a fair distance off, across the lake, in the dark, low lying bush. But, from the uniform, well spaced answers and frequent crashes, it was obvious that he was on his way, and determined. While he was moving fast, I backstroked towards shore, beached, deftly grabbed the Legend and tiptoed, through 6 inches of water, to the alder cover on land. Suddenly breathless, I took refuge in a lovely trio of boulders at water’s edge, huffing like a locomotive. His distant pop had become a subtle bark, descending, quietly now, to lake level. Caution had entered his mind as he closed on the opening and, though his footfalls had stopped, the barking was steady, at 20 second intervals. My eyes were useless, but I felt his big ears scoping across the lake. He was locked on to this locale and I dared not move. A waiting game. All was still, and he called no more. The silence was electric. Sitting in the rocks, one leg started to vibrate. My leg was electric! But I’m good at that game, and in the state I was in, knew better than to try a call. Instead, I poked around for a thin stick of driftwood, and snapped it sharply in the air. The report echoed back from the far shore, almost overlapped by a coarse “woooff” and crush of branches. Within seconds, he was stepping in the shallow water. I could only imagine his impressive rack, striding proudly, wading straight out towards me. The splashes deepened with the water, as did the tension, for it seemed he was soon to be swimming across and I had yet to see him. There was plenty of hunting light remaining and though I was blind to that direction, he would have a better view. My canoe floated ten critical yards offshore, directly in line. A move was required. The moose had stopped, knee deep, I suppose, and was staring me down. I figured the next time he moved, I would too, along the shore, north, closer to Al. If he swam the lake I’d try to pull him to where one of us may get a shot. The wait seemed forever, but at last, he grunted and stepped out once again and, on his third splash, I trotted four quick steps. He stopped and I sloshed four more, pulling up beside an overhanging alder. He was in motion again, but seemed to have more spring in his step and I realized that he had turned and now paralleled me as I looked north. Either he had spooked or decided to circle the lake. But his steps were plodding and steady and he called often, and, deep inside, I heaved a sigh of relief. He was coming around and I was pretty sure I could drag him past my partner. Time was the only factor. I had to keep him moving.I tugged the brim of my hat down to shield against the bright sky and stared hard at the sounds coming from the far shore. A hulking shape loomed out of the darkness, floating like a black ghost against the treeline. He sloshed along, ten yards offshore, becoming more defined as the background bush dropped to the horizon. Covered by his noise, I hop-scotched from boulder to boulder, making good time while staying close to shore, but soon ran out of rocks and had to stop. He plodded on until a brushy point jutted out, blocked his way. Sensing him roll his head around to listen, I swished the water with one boot while gulping my best calf call. At that, he “woofed” heavily and plowed onto the point, disappearing, but emerged shortly, on the waterfront, and stopped where the thin strip of hay began, highlighting his silhouette. The head was tilted back, long nose high, and, when he lowered it, a small tight rack was noticeable. I rustled some alders with my free hand and mewed as a calf until he moved once more. And so it went, alternating steps, call and answer, up opposing shorelines into the bay. Each call became easier as my voice loosened and confidence rose. But his treks grew shorter, stops more frequent. These stalls were painfully quiet and testing. A thousand crickets seemed to ring in my ears. Dare a call? Swirl a foot or shake a tree? One errant sound and he could be off. Pounding pulse and patience. Often, pure silence coaxed him on, and a bark, loud and gruff, would explode, in time with his first step, and echo across the bay. Moving and halting with the moose, for the better part of an hour, I had worked myself into a fine position, beneath a clump of alder, 60 yards from Pyjama Boy. I could vaguely see his pale figure, crouching in the stand, against the quickly darkening sky. The young bull, contrasted, bold and black against the hay, was broadside less than 100 yards beyond, steam spouting from his upturned nostrils as his head nodded slowly in a small circle, searching for a scent. His ears, standing at attention, focused on my hideout. The silence was deafening. One last delicate barrier lay twenty yards ahead of him. The outlet creek, 10 yards wide, the outer limit of Al’s shooting range. If only I could move him across. And soon.Our silent staredown dragged painfully . He stood motionless. Frozen, stone still. And I gave in.Grabbing a handful of brush, I gave it a gentle shake, then, cracked the heaviest branch. “WHOOOF” The entire body of the bull convulsed, as he let out a thunderous grunt and trotted the short distance to the creek. The deep roar had scarcely bounced from the hills and back to my ears when he jerked to a stop at the bank. I rattled the bush again. Instantly, he roared and shook and, to my dismay, turned and ran down stream, out of sight. I gave a desperate call, loud and pleading, and heard his splashing hooves, going away. My heart dropped. Then, pounding through the grass, there he was, on our side, barreling right down the trail towards me. I’m not sure why, if he saw me or smelled pyjamas, but he halted, dead in his tracks, straight under Al. I saw Al draw, heard a whir and a whack, and that bull spun on a dime and plunged, headlong, into the deep creek and lumbered up the other side to shake off, exactly where he had stood a few short seconds earlier. With a disgusted look back, he trotted away through the hay. Twigs rustled and snapped as he hit the bush. Then all was silent. Except for the heartbeats. Again, I waved my arms frantically at Al, hoping for some kind of response, but I guess he’s not much on sign language. So I strained my ears for a short while then, carefully, slipped along the shore and waited for him to come down the bare cedar. He had stayed up to listen and now was having a hard time descending. He was wide-eyed, quivering noticeably, and gasping as he tried to whisper.“Unreal” was all he could manage.“Did you get him?” I had to ask.“Better than sex” he babbled, “never been so excited!” “Did you get him?” “Oh yeah, stuck him good! Up here!” And he reached around for the part of his back that he couldn’t reach. “ Just the feathers left sticking’ out! Buried it. Was gonna take another shot when he stopped there, but couldn’t get it off! Last I heard him, he crashed thru that feed over there and that was it!” Al pointed down the creek to where it bent around a thick tangle of red willow. “I’m pretty sure he’s dead meat! Man, that was something else!I pumped his big mitt and slapped up at his shoulder. “Exxxcellent!”Al rambled on. “I thought we’d lost him when he took off that last time. He musta’ known it was shallow over there. Drew on him as he ran in, the railing was in the way. I had to get up on my toes to shoot. Couldn’t really aim, I just shot. Man, oh man. Un******real.” It was last light and we briefly searched for blood at the scene of the crime. None could be found and I left Allen flicking his bic and slogged back to retrieve the canoe. From the sparkle in his eye and smile on his face, I was confident there was a moose down, somewhere, across that creek. By the time I stroked in, Al was at the water, on the trail, with no blood yet. Thick gouges and craters scarred the other bank where the bull had hauled up and out. Al jumped in and I swung him across. No blood. It was hard to pick out the proper set of tracks, given the number at hand, but the thin crystal frost, quickly forming on the grass, had been disturbed in his wake and we found a couple small dots of red a short distance from shore. On finding a second patch of blood, I placed my hat over it and we retreated to the canoe and paddled hard for home. Man, I was thirsty! It was a moonless, starlit night. Marvelous. Andre waited by a small fire at camp. He had heard it all! The grunts and bellows, snapping and splashing, and was completely amazed. He was nearly as excited as the two of us. We hurriedly told him the story, so far, while gulping down an ice cold beer and rounding up lights, rope and axe. And we all piled into the boat and motored back up the lake to pick up the trail. It had been forty minutes since the shot. We must have been quite a sight that night, in the hay. Three of us, side by side, puffing steam. Ice crystals sparkled all around. Al sported a miner’s type cap lamp and gripped two hands on my cocked crossbow. I walked slightly ahead, Coleman lamp held high, axe at the ready. Andre waved a Maglight, sweeping for eyes, far ahead, side to side. The blood trail was scarce, but steady. One or two drops every five yards. The swath through the frosted grass gave us a good look ahead and the trail was never lost. It led into the patch of willow and we found our prize laying just on the other side. A three year old bull with a chunky little rack. Allen’s arrow had worked its way out the bottom of the belly. The feathers no longer adorned his back. His final run had covered less than 100 yards. We raised a little cheer, did a little dance, and made quick work of gutting him, leaving the tip of his heart on a nearby branch. (a tradition passed from my late father-in-law) With our moose propped open under a cloud of rising steam, we headed back, starry eyed, into that marvelous night. The next afternoon brought 3 days of warm rain, but our spirits were never dampened. George popped in Friday, as scheduled, and flew our quartered moose out, to hang in the cooler at the lodge. The bows were stored away, and the camp frame was completed. One quiet morning, a young bull chased a cow and calf along the far shore. Wanting nothing to do with him, she clipped along thirty yards ahead, each splashing hoof sending up a little rainbow. We found some time to catch a few fish and fix up tree stands and shooting lanes. The old bare cedar was deemed worthy and left untouched, ready for the next brave hunter Monday morning, under heavily overcast skies and steady drizzle, the Beaver came and three happy campers were homeward bound, jam packed with memories..  
    May 26, 2016 38
  • 22 May 2016
    By Nico Els from East Cape Bushveld Hunting                                                                                        May 21, 2016                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                What Really Matters Being a Professional Hunter, I get to experience nature in all his glory. Anything from open plains roaming with Impala, Giraffe, Zebra and Wildebeest to Kudu infested valleys down to Springhare and Scrubhare during the cold winter nights. I’ve been privileged to be able to meet many different people from different countries, cultures and backgrounds. I’ve worked with some of them, worked for some of them but hunted with most of them. Around the traditional South African campfires I’ve heard their stories, all they had to share about life, love and of course hunting. Over the years I’ve gotten a good idea what matters to them when they are out hunting in our beautiful country. What makes them tick and what not. Some reckon that the enjoyment of the hunt is the most important part, others reckon the animals or the amount of game you see. Some might say the people you hunt with and others the guides who take you hunting. Many hunters, many opinions, but what about the actual hunt? When push comes to shove, what really matters? Well, as a Professional Hunter, I’ve developed my own list of essentials when out hunting. These essentials consist of characteristics, equipment and capabilities that, to me can really make or break a hunt. Telescopes – I went hunting for Impala, Warthog and Blesbuck once with a client. He got some real nice animals, but he took them all with one of my rifles, simply because he couldn’t get his rifle to shoot where he was aiming. After some time we realized that the crosshairs were basically hanging loose. In short, it was dysfunctional and so he had to use one of mine. So many times, I’ve hunted with chaps who seem to spend all their money on the rifle and as little as possible on the scope. They buy expensive stocks, suppressors, gun belts and similar equipment to make the rifle more comfortable to carry and handle, but then go for low budget scopes not suited for their rifles, calibres or hunting terrain. Now the first thing we do when a client arrives at East Cape Bushveld Hunting is to take him or her down to the shooting range to sight the rifles. More than often, ammo is wasted trying to sight a rifle that should have been sighted with the second or third shot. Either the scope isn’t setting or it just can’t handle the recoil from the rifle. The result? The hunter goes hunting with a rifle not sighted in properly and with limited ammo or, like with this client, he had to borrow one of mine or one from his PH , all because the choice for a scope is not taken up seriously. The quality of your telescope matters. Ammunition – The second mistake hunters make is to go for cheap ammo. Picture this; A Client joins us on a hunt for Kudu. We spot a bull in the early morning sun and plan our stalk. We walk slowly and stop regularly to avoid being spotted or heard. We get down in prone position before reaching our FFP. The kudu now not more than 120 yards away is standing quartering away, browsing on a ‘Spekboom’ or Bacon Tree as it is known in English. We get set up, shooting across the valley. Everything goes according to plan, until he fires the shot, hitting the animal just behind the shoulder and hoping the bullet exits his chest on the opposite side. The bull disappears like only a Kudu knows how to disappear in these thickets. Long story short, we tracked the bull for several hundred yards before finding it dead in the shade of a Jacket Plum where he had gone to lay down. He never got up. The bullet disintegrated but the right lung got punctured by a small fragment of the jacket. If it weren’t for that, the bull would surely have gone way further and we wouldn’t have gotten him, or worse, he could’ve hit him further back in the stomach... As with the choice of a scope, the ammo you plan on using is very important and can be the difference between a successful or unsuccessful hunt.  The ability of the bullet to penetrate and stay on course matters. Fitness - the physical capability of the hunter to cover the terrain without tiring too quickly is something many hunters oversee many times. Hunting Steenbuck with a European client once, we had to cross a valley and walk right to the top of the opposite hill where there is less bushes and trees and of course where we spotted a pair of Steenbuck. The terrain was fairly rugged, but most hunters would have covered it without breaking too much of a sweat. We probably covered about a mile to get within range of the animal, but the client being very tired from walking, forgot his rifle on safe. When he realised that, he suddenly went into a rush to take it off of safe and shoot. The animal got away and afterwards the client explained to me that he couldn’t concentrate and that it was too much walking for him. “Next time, we use more car and less foot”. Yup, fitness matters. Patience – I cannot emphasize this enough. More than ninety percent of all the hunters or clients I hunt with from all over, lack patience. When I was about eleven years old, my father took me hunting for a Bushbuck. One Saturday afternoon, we slowly made our way down into a valley where we knew some bushbuck had been hanging around. We sat down under ‘n Jacket-Plum and started scanning across the valley for Bushbuck on the other side. Couple of hours went by and we didn’t see as much as a Duiker. Bird sounds reverberated all over the valley, but no animals. A Kudu bull makes his way out of the thick bush and my father immediately notes that he is crippled in his one front leg. He instructed me to set up, but even before I can do so, he spots us and rushes back into the brush. All of a sudden a Bushbuck ewe and ram appears from the bushes below us. They must have heard our shuffling and whispering, thus deciding to leave the valley. As they make their way out, I set up to take the shot. Just before they enter the thick brush across the valley the ram turns broad side for a moment and I pull the trigger. The shot goes off but to my disappointment the ram walks in behind a River Euphorbia and the bullet from the 30-06 makes a hole on the one side of the tree trunk. The ram took off into the bush. I pulled the trigger when the animal’s front leg was exactly behind the tree, thus hitting the tree trunk and not the animal. Rooky mistake. Never before have I been so disappointed. A week later, Saturday morning very early I make my way back to that same spot to wait for that ram. I sit down under the same tree and for the next four hours, the previous Saturday repeats itself. The distinct chanting of a couple Glossy Starlings keeps me entertained for the morning, but no movement or sign of any animal, not even to mention Bushbuck. I wait patiently. Eventually I start to mash up dung from animals that have been resting under the tree, only looking up now and then to check for animals. All of sudden I catch movement in the corner of my eye. Looking up, I spot the ram making his way out of the tree line where he had disappeared the previous week and stopping in the shade of a Shepherds tree. I quickly get set up and take aim on the only part of the animal I’m able to see – his neck. Now, not more than 150 yards away I squeeze the trigger gently. The bang from the rifle overpowers every other sound and for a moment everything else seems to go quiet. The Bushbuck is down. All the hard work has paid off. Months of hunting and scouting, trying to outthink the animals. Sitting, glassing the thick brush and waiting quietly – yes my friend, patience matters more than anything else. The list goes and on. So many things come into play when you’re out hunting. Yes, you must enjoy it. Yes your guides, chef, tracker, friends, family and everyone else involved will have an enormous effect on how much you enjoy it. Even your own mind-set will be a determining factor, but on top of my list of essentials, gear and characteristics, is this; Telescope, Bullet Quality, Fitness and Patience. The most important of these, is patience.   www.ecbushveldhunting.co.za ecbhunting@gmail.com
    70 Posted by Chris Avena
  • By Nico Els from East Cape Bushveld Hunting                                                                                        May 21, 2016                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                What Really Matters Being a Professional Hunter, I get to experience nature in all his glory. Anything from open plains roaming with Impala, Giraffe, Zebra and Wildebeest to Kudu infested valleys down to Springhare and Scrubhare during the cold winter nights. I’ve been privileged to be able to meet many different people from different countries, cultures and backgrounds. I’ve worked with some of them, worked for some of them but hunted with most of them. Around the traditional South African campfires I’ve heard their stories, all they had to share about life, love and of course hunting. Over the years I’ve gotten a good idea what matters to them when they are out hunting in our beautiful country. What makes them tick and what not. Some reckon that the enjoyment of the hunt is the most important part, others reckon the animals or the amount of game you see. Some might say the people you hunt with and others the guides who take you hunting. Many hunters, many opinions, but what about the actual hunt? When push comes to shove, what really matters? Well, as a Professional Hunter, I’ve developed my own list of essentials when out hunting. These essentials consist of characteristics, equipment and capabilities that, to me can really make or break a hunt. Telescopes – I went hunting for Impala, Warthog and Blesbuck once with a client. He got some real nice animals, but he took them all with one of my rifles, simply because he couldn’t get his rifle to shoot where he was aiming. After some time we realized that the crosshairs were basically hanging loose. In short, it was dysfunctional and so he had to use one of mine. So many times, I’ve hunted with chaps who seem to spend all their money on the rifle and as little as possible on the scope. They buy expensive stocks, suppressors, gun belts and similar equipment to make the rifle more comfortable to carry and handle, but then go for low budget scopes not suited for their rifles, calibres or hunting terrain. Now the first thing we do when a client arrives at East Cape Bushveld Hunting is to take him or her down to the shooting range to sight the rifles. More than often, ammo is wasted trying to sight a rifle that should have been sighted with the second or third shot. Either the scope isn’t setting or it just can’t handle the recoil from the rifle. The result? The hunter goes hunting with a rifle not sighted in properly and with limited ammo or, like with this client, he had to borrow one of mine or one from his PH , all because the choice for a scope is not taken up seriously. The quality of your telescope matters. Ammunition – The second mistake hunters make is to go for cheap ammo. Picture this; A Client joins us on a hunt for Kudu. We spot a bull in the early morning sun and plan our stalk. We walk slowly and stop regularly to avoid being spotted or heard. We get down in prone position before reaching our FFP. The kudu now not more than 120 yards away is standing quartering away, browsing on a ‘Spekboom’ or Bacon Tree as it is known in English. We get set up, shooting across the valley. Everything goes according to plan, until he fires the shot, hitting the animal just behind the shoulder and hoping the bullet exits his chest on the opposite side. The bull disappears like only a Kudu knows how to disappear in these thickets. Long story short, we tracked the bull for several hundred yards before finding it dead in the shade of a Jacket Plum where he had gone to lay down. He never got up. The bullet disintegrated but the right lung got punctured by a small fragment of the jacket. If it weren’t for that, the bull would surely have gone way further and we wouldn’t have gotten him, or worse, he could’ve hit him further back in the stomach... As with the choice of a scope, the ammo you plan on using is very important and can be the difference between a successful or unsuccessful hunt.  The ability of the bullet to penetrate and stay on course matters. Fitness - the physical capability of the hunter to cover the terrain without tiring too quickly is something many hunters oversee many times. Hunting Steenbuck with a European client once, we had to cross a valley and walk right to the top of the opposite hill where there is less bushes and trees and of course where we spotted a pair of Steenbuck. The terrain was fairly rugged, but most hunters would have covered it without breaking too much of a sweat. We probably covered about a mile to get within range of the animal, but the client being very tired from walking, forgot his rifle on safe. When he realised that, he suddenly went into a rush to take it off of safe and shoot. The animal got away and afterwards the client explained to me that he couldn’t concentrate and that it was too much walking for him. “Next time, we use more car and less foot”. Yup, fitness matters. Patience – I cannot emphasize this enough. More than ninety percent of all the hunters or clients I hunt with from all over, lack patience. When I was about eleven years old, my father took me hunting for a Bushbuck. One Saturday afternoon, we slowly made our way down into a valley where we knew some bushbuck had been hanging around. We sat down under ‘n Jacket-Plum and started scanning across the valley for Bushbuck on the other side. Couple of hours went by and we didn’t see as much as a Duiker. Bird sounds reverberated all over the valley, but no animals. A Kudu bull makes his way out of the thick bush and my father immediately notes that he is crippled in his one front leg. He instructed me to set up, but even before I can do so, he spots us and rushes back into the brush. All of a sudden a Bushbuck ewe and ram appears from the bushes below us. They must have heard our shuffling and whispering, thus deciding to leave the valley. As they make their way out, I set up to take the shot. Just before they enter the thick brush across the valley the ram turns broad side for a moment and I pull the trigger. The shot goes off but to my disappointment the ram walks in behind a River Euphorbia and the bullet from the 30-06 makes a hole on the one side of the tree trunk. The ram took off into the bush. I pulled the trigger when the animal’s front leg was exactly behind the tree, thus hitting the tree trunk and not the animal. Rooky mistake. Never before have I been so disappointed. A week later, Saturday morning very early I make my way back to that same spot to wait for that ram. I sit down under the same tree and for the next four hours, the previous Saturday repeats itself. The distinct chanting of a couple Glossy Starlings keeps me entertained for the morning, but no movement or sign of any animal, not even to mention Bushbuck. I wait patiently. Eventually I start to mash up dung from animals that have been resting under the tree, only looking up now and then to check for animals. All of sudden I catch movement in the corner of my eye. Looking up, I spot the ram making his way out of the tree line where he had disappeared the previous week and stopping in the shade of a Shepherds tree. I quickly get set up and take aim on the only part of the animal I’m able to see – his neck. Now, not more than 150 yards away I squeeze the trigger gently. The bang from the rifle overpowers every other sound and for a moment everything else seems to go quiet. The Bushbuck is down. All the hard work has paid off. Months of hunting and scouting, trying to outthink the animals. Sitting, glassing the thick brush and waiting quietly – yes my friend, patience matters more than anything else. The list goes and on. So many things come into play when you’re out hunting. Yes, you must enjoy it. Yes your guides, chef, tracker, friends, family and everyone else involved will have an enormous effect on how much you enjoy it. Even your own mind-set will be a determining factor, but on top of my list of essentials, gear and characteristics, is this; Telescope, Bullet Quality, Fitness and Patience. The most important of these, is patience.   www.ecbushveldhunting.co.za ecbhunting@gmail.com
    May 22, 2016 70
  • 01 Jun 2014
                                         The Winds of Change By Chris Avena   Our forefathers had the vision to see far into the future to our present day America. They bestowed upon us the basic rights and freedoms as a strong foundation that our great country was built on. In present day America, it seems that our Constitutional Rights that were handed down to us over two hundred years ago are under threat of change.   In today’s America, it is politically incorrect to speak your mind in fear of offending someone. It has become a place were “Big Government” is slowly taking away our rights and freedoms that thousands of Americans fought and died to protect. The word Patriot is defined as one who loves, supports and defends his or her country and its interests with devotion. We had the pleasure of speaking to Ted Nugent. Agree or disagree with his words or beliefs, but like it or not – Ted is here to fight for your rights because he is “A Patriot”.   SeeMeHunt - Do you feel that it is detrimental that the American Media allows commentators who are non- U.S Citizens to voice a strong opinion against our Constitutional Rights – thus, Influencing the American public to believe that our Constitutional Rights are in dire need of ratification?   Ted Nugent -Ya think! With the American and global media hellbent on an America hating, freedom hating, gun hating rampage, such consistency of hate for our sacred Constitution and overall American dream of individualism and individual rights and freedoms is brainwashing an ever increasing gaggle of ignorant and weak people to fall for the Saul Alinsky/Barak Obama scam of big government socialism. That is why that same media and government goons attack me and hate me. I wear it as a badge of honor standing up for we the people principles. It is that simple.   SeeMeHunt -The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp (FDIC) had listed firearm and ammunition sellers as “High Risk”. Since then, the Obama Administration has applied pressure to banking and lending institutions such as Bank of America, GE Capital and TD Bank to cut ties to gun stores and freeze assets to firearm related business. How detrimental can it be when the government can dictate to our financial institutions who they can do business with?   Ted Nugent- Tyrants, dictators, emperors, despots and gangbangers have always tripped over themselves throughout history to disarm free citizens and in every instance, it has turned out catastrophic for every society. The history of the world is rife with irrefutable evidence that the Obama government is maniacal in their "fundamental transformation" of the greatest quality of life in the history of mankind, and we the people damn well better wake up and fulfill our we the people responsibilities to pressure and direct our government employees what we expect of them. Anyone who seeks to force free people into unarmed helplessness is evil personified. Case closed.   SeeMeHunt -The New York Safe Act is the most aggressive and controversial piece of legislation on gun control to date. What is it that makes the Safe Act more about Gun Confiscation than Gun Control?   Ted Nugent - Only evil, rotten, dangerous people would claim that "shall not be infringed" means something other than the unambiguous statement it is. All laws infringing on law abiding Americans are criminal as are the creators and enforcers of such criminal laws. S   SeeMeHunt -Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel has lobbied hard to outlaw gun stores in the city of Chicago. As of now you will not find a gun stores in 99.5 percent of the city. The few stores that still remain will require a video record of all gun sales. How is this not a direct violation of our Constitutional Rights?    Ted Nugent- Rahm Emanuel is a direct violation of the US Constitution and all things holy in America. If there were truly justice in America, Rahm Emanuel, the president and his gun running attorney general Eric Holder along with Hillary Clinton and the whole America hating gang would all be arrested, tried, convicted and jailed for their clear and present danger to America. Period.   We are at a critical tipping point in our countries history. Our rights and freedmons are under attack. It is our obligation to question our elected officials and fight for what is rightfully ours before it is too late.
    31315 Posted by Chris Avena
  •                                      The Winds of Change By Chris Avena   Our forefathers had the vision to see far into the future to our present day America. They bestowed upon us the basic rights and freedoms as a strong foundation that our great country was built on. In present day America, it seems that our Constitutional Rights that were handed down to us over two hundred years ago are under threat of change.   In today’s America, it is politically incorrect to speak your mind in fear of offending someone. It has become a place were “Big Government” is slowly taking away our rights and freedoms that thousands of Americans fought and died to protect. The word Patriot is defined as one who loves, supports and defends his or her country and its interests with devotion. We had the pleasure of speaking to Ted Nugent. Agree or disagree with his words or beliefs, but like it or not – Ted is here to fight for your rights because he is “A Patriot”.   SeeMeHunt - Do you feel that it is detrimental that the American Media allows commentators who are non- U.S Citizens to voice a strong opinion against our Constitutional Rights – thus, Influencing the American public to believe that our Constitutional Rights are in dire need of ratification?   Ted Nugent -Ya think! With the American and global media hellbent on an America hating, freedom hating, gun hating rampage, such consistency of hate for our sacred Constitution and overall American dream of individualism and individual rights and freedoms is brainwashing an ever increasing gaggle of ignorant and weak people to fall for the Saul Alinsky/Barak Obama scam of big government socialism. That is why that same media and government goons attack me and hate me. I wear it as a badge of honor standing up for we the people principles. It is that simple.   SeeMeHunt -The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp (FDIC) had listed firearm and ammunition sellers as “High Risk”. Since then, the Obama Administration has applied pressure to banking and lending institutions such as Bank of America, GE Capital and TD Bank to cut ties to gun stores and freeze assets to firearm related business. How detrimental can it be when the government can dictate to our financial institutions who they can do business with?   Ted Nugent- Tyrants, dictators, emperors, despots and gangbangers have always tripped over themselves throughout history to disarm free citizens and in every instance, it has turned out catastrophic for every society. The history of the world is rife with irrefutable evidence that the Obama government is maniacal in their "fundamental transformation" of the greatest quality of life in the history of mankind, and we the people damn well better wake up and fulfill our we the people responsibilities to pressure and direct our government employees what we expect of them. Anyone who seeks to force free people into unarmed helplessness is evil personified. Case closed.   SeeMeHunt -The New York Safe Act is the most aggressive and controversial piece of legislation on gun control to date. What is it that makes the Safe Act more about Gun Confiscation than Gun Control?   Ted Nugent - Only evil, rotten, dangerous people would claim that "shall not be infringed" means something other than the unambiguous statement it is. All laws infringing on law abiding Americans are criminal as are the creators and enforcers of such criminal laws. S   SeeMeHunt -Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel has lobbied hard to outlaw gun stores in the city of Chicago. As of now you will not find a gun stores in 99.5 percent of the city. The few stores that still remain will require a video record of all gun sales. How is this not a direct violation of our Constitutional Rights?    Ted Nugent- Rahm Emanuel is a direct violation of the US Constitution and all things holy in America. If there were truly justice in America, Rahm Emanuel, the president and his gun running attorney general Eric Holder along with Hillary Clinton and the whole America hating gang would all be arrested, tried, convicted and jailed for their clear and present danger to America. Period.   We are at a critical tipping point in our countries history. Our rights and freedmons are under attack. It is our obligation to question our elected officials and fight for what is rightfully ours before it is too late.
    Jun 01, 2014 31315
  • 02 Apr 2014
          Carl Zeiss Sports Optics Adds New Sunshade for Riflescopes             NORTH CHESTERFIELD, VA., (March 31 , 2014) - Carl Zeiss Sports Optics, the world's leading manufacturer of high performance sports optics is pleased to announce the new sunshade accessory designed specifically for 42mm and 50mm CONQUEST HD5 and TERRA 3x riflescopes.  These uniquely designed sunshades will help prevent stray light from entering your scope and producing flare and glare across your sight picture. Prevent a sudden flash of sunlight from ruining your hunting experience with these new ZEISS sunshades.  Just attach the shade to the end of your scope, and enjoy the clarity it brings on super sunny days.  These shades can also drastically reduce glare so sunlight can't give away your position to game animals.  ZEISS sunshades are also designed to keep dust and rain off the objective lens. Another benefit of the sunshade is that it reduces the effects of mirage caused by heat coming off the barrel when firing repeatedly. Installation of the ZEISS sunshade is simple.  It can be easily screwed into place on the objective end of the scope.   Product features: Reduces glare from sunlight Anodized to match scopes’ matte finish Length excluding the threading is 3.75 inches Improves Image Quality Blocks Peripheral Light Shields Dust/Dirt/Debris/Moisture   MSRP’s:   CONQUEST HD5 / TERRA 3x 42mm     $53.42   CONQUEST HD5  / TERRA 3x 50mm    $55.54      About Carl Zeiss Sports Optics   Carl Zeiss Sports Optics is a leading, international provider of premium sports optics and is part of the Consumer Optics Group of Carl Zeiss. Carl Zeiss Sports Optics, LLC is responsible for sales, marketing and distribution of its state-of-the-art binoculars, riflescopes, rangefinders and spotting scopes throughout the United States and Canada. Carl Zeiss Sports Optics’ North American headquarters is located in North Chesterfield, VA.   About the ZEISS Group ZEISS is an internationally leading technology enterprise operating in the fields of optics and optoelectronics. The company has been contributing to technological progress for more than 160 years. Founded in 1846, the company now has its headquarters in Oberkochen in southwest Germany and has representatives in over 40 countries.
    29112 Posted by Chris Avena
  •       Carl Zeiss Sports Optics Adds New Sunshade for Riflescopes             NORTH CHESTERFIELD, VA., (March 31 , 2014) - Carl Zeiss Sports Optics, the world's leading manufacturer of high performance sports optics is pleased to announce the new sunshade accessory designed specifically for 42mm and 50mm CONQUEST HD5 and TERRA 3x riflescopes.  These uniquely designed sunshades will help prevent stray light from entering your scope and producing flare and glare across your sight picture. Prevent a sudden flash of sunlight from ruining your hunting experience with these new ZEISS sunshades.  Just attach the shade to the end of your scope, and enjoy the clarity it brings on super sunny days.  These shades can also drastically reduce glare so sunlight can't give away your position to game animals.  ZEISS sunshades are also designed to keep dust and rain off the objective lens. Another benefit of the sunshade is that it reduces the effects of mirage caused by heat coming off the barrel when firing repeatedly. Installation of the ZEISS sunshade is simple.  It can be easily screwed into place on the objective end of the scope.   Product features: Reduces glare from sunlight Anodized to match scopes’ matte finish Length excluding the threading is 3.75 inches Improves Image Quality Blocks Peripheral Light Shields Dust/Dirt/Debris/Moisture   MSRP’s:   CONQUEST HD5 / TERRA 3x 42mm     $53.42   CONQUEST HD5  / TERRA 3x 50mm    $55.54      About Carl Zeiss Sports Optics   Carl Zeiss Sports Optics is a leading, international provider of premium sports optics and is part of the Consumer Optics Group of Carl Zeiss. Carl Zeiss Sports Optics, LLC is responsible for sales, marketing and distribution of its state-of-the-art binoculars, riflescopes, rangefinders and spotting scopes throughout the United States and Canada. Carl Zeiss Sports Optics’ North American headquarters is located in North Chesterfield, VA.   About the ZEISS Group ZEISS is an internationally leading technology enterprise operating in the fields of optics and optoelectronics. The company has been contributing to technological progress for more than 160 years. Founded in 1846, the company now has its headquarters in Oberkochen in southwest Germany and has representatives in over 40 countries.
    Apr 02, 2014 29112
  • 09 Feb 2015
    Well, I know some of you all are still under snow.....LOTS of it, but I wanted to see what you all do during the summer months, camping, family vacations, fishing planting ect.... Here in south Ga the summers can be hot and dry, but we get out by the pools, head to FL to do some fishing, but mostly we hang out and enjoy the long days and good friends.  What do you do in your neck of the woods to stay busy over the summer when the kiddos are out of school and the long winter days are passed?  
    24427 Posted by Scott Stover
  • Well, I know some of you all are still under snow.....LOTS of it, but I wanted to see what you all do during the summer months, camping, family vacations, fishing planting ect.... Here in south Ga the summers can be hot and dry, but we get out by the pools, head to FL to do some fishing, but mostly we hang out and enjoy the long days and good friends.  What do you do in your neck of the woods to stay busy over the summer when the kiddos are out of school and the long winter days are passed?  
    Feb 09, 2015 24427
  • 10 Dec 2010
    86-year-old Pa. man hunts from recliner, bags buck By MICHAEL RUBINKAM Associated Press Posted: 12/07/2010 04:49:01 PM EST   ALLENTOWN, Pa.—Lester Warner left the hospital in a weakened state last month, his frail body wracked by late-stage cancer. At 86 years old, he and his family had decided to stop treatment. But that didn't mean he planned to stop hunting. Pennsylvania's highly anticipated two-week rifle deer season was fast approaching, and the lifelong hunter from Dover Township, about 30 miles south of Harrisburg, wanted to take to the woods one last time. "He just assumed he would be going. We decided we were going to play along with it: 'Yeah, we can't wait for hunting season, Dad,'" recalled Warner's son, Brian. Brian and his brother Scott were skeptical. But when their father started to rally—gaining strength with the help of a physical therapist—they decided they had better accommodate him, said Brian, 51. So Brian lugged an old recliner up the side of Broadtop Mountain, near his Huntingdon County dairy farm, to the small hut the family had built for Les Warner years ago. His father would hunt in comfort. It was 19 degrees as the sun rose on opening day last week, the valley floor white with frost. Warner eased his old man's frame into the recliner, sipped his coffee, and waited, armed with the .243 Winchester that Brian had selected for its mild recoil. It wasn't long before a huge 8-point buck emerged from the woods, the biggest that Warner or his son had ever had the opportunity to take. They marveled at their good fortune. A hunter can go days without seeing a buck. "Well, shoot it," Warner told Brian. "No, you're gonna shoot it," his son replied. Warner stood up from the recliner and took aim. The buck bolted. He followed it for 80 or 90 yards. Then, as it slowed down, he pulled the trigger. A perfect shot. Lowering the gun, Warner turned to his son and said: "Never give up." "That's right, Dad." Brian called his mother. Shirley Warner could scarcely believe it. "Knowing what he's been through in the last six months, in and out of the hospital, radiation and chemo and physical therapy and really sick at times, I was shocked. In my wildest dreams I didn't think he would get a buck this year," said Shirley, who's been married to Les for 53 years. "My son and I cried because it was a miracle ... there's no other explanation." A week later, the retired pretzel baker remains thankful. "I know I've had many blessings through this situation," said Les Warner, whose story was first reported by the York Daily Record. "Everything seems to be turning out well for me, and I know the Lord's been with us."
    23501 Posted by Chris Avena
  • 86-year-old Pa. man hunts from recliner, bags buck By MICHAEL RUBINKAM Associated Press Posted: 12/07/2010 04:49:01 PM EST   ALLENTOWN, Pa.—Lester Warner left the hospital in a weakened state last month, his frail body wracked by late-stage cancer. At 86 years old, he and his family had decided to stop treatment. But that didn't mean he planned to stop hunting. Pennsylvania's highly anticipated two-week rifle deer season was fast approaching, and the lifelong hunter from Dover Township, about 30 miles south of Harrisburg, wanted to take to the woods one last time. "He just assumed he would be going. We decided we were going to play along with it: 'Yeah, we can't wait for hunting season, Dad,'" recalled Warner's son, Brian. Brian and his brother Scott were skeptical. But when their father started to rally—gaining strength with the help of a physical therapist—they decided they had better accommodate him, said Brian, 51. So Brian lugged an old recliner up the side of Broadtop Mountain, near his Huntingdon County dairy farm, to the small hut the family had built for Les Warner years ago. His father would hunt in comfort. It was 19 degrees as the sun rose on opening day last week, the valley floor white with frost. Warner eased his old man's frame into the recliner, sipped his coffee, and waited, armed with the .243 Winchester that Brian had selected for its mild recoil. It wasn't long before a huge 8-point buck emerged from the woods, the biggest that Warner or his son had ever had the opportunity to take. They marveled at their good fortune. A hunter can go days without seeing a buck. "Well, shoot it," Warner told Brian. "No, you're gonna shoot it," his son replied. Warner stood up from the recliner and took aim. The buck bolted. He followed it for 80 or 90 yards. Then, as it slowed down, he pulled the trigger. A perfect shot. Lowering the gun, Warner turned to his son and said: "Never give up." "That's right, Dad." Brian called his mother. Shirley Warner could scarcely believe it. "Knowing what he's been through in the last six months, in and out of the hospital, radiation and chemo and physical therapy and really sick at times, I was shocked. In my wildest dreams I didn't think he would get a buck this year," said Shirley, who's been married to Les for 53 years. "My son and I cried because it was a miracle ... there's no other explanation." A week later, the retired pretzel baker remains thankful. "I know I've had many blessings through this situation," said Les Warner, whose story was first reported by the York Daily Record. "Everything seems to be turning out well for me, and I know the Lord's been with us."
    Dec 10, 2010 23501
  • 09 Mar 2011
    Beanbags are fine for the playground but not for a border showdown By Ted Nugent The Washington Times      6:03 p.m., Tuesday, March 8, 2011   Being a Border Patrol agent on our southern border has got to be a very difficult, harrowing job. It is surely an even tougher job when our agents are told to launch “nonlethal” beanbags at armed, illegal intruders. Rule No. 1: Never bring a beanbag to a gunfight. Think of this: With an orgy of high-powered drug-gang violence just across our border that already has claimed roughly 35,000 lives, plus numerous reports of armed, illegal intruders crossing over the border and shooting at our police officers and committing other violent crimes against American citizens, some politically correct bureaucratic idiot directs our Border Patrol agents to launch beanbags at machine-gun-toting, violent invaders. The result of this brain-dead, irresponsible mindset: My fellow Michiganiac, Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, was shot dead by an armed illegal intruder on Dec. 14 in Arizona. This policy, of course, is lunacy defined. Only a wild-eyed lunatic would force brave, law enforcement officers into dangerous situations without adequate firepower to stop danger in its tracks. These are the same uber-left-wing fools who sputter and scream how our law enforcement agents are “outgunned,” ignorantly blaming failed gun control laws while knowingly sending our warriors into battle with phenomenally inferior firepower. In fact, beanbags have no fire power, unless you are waging war on small kittens. To add insult to the tragic death of Agent Terry,it now appears that certain bureaucrats within the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) allowed a known gun-running thug, whom they were investigating, to buy and transport the guns into Mexico that were used to kill Agent Terry. Call me crazy, but I thought law enforcers would have learned their lesson by now. It seems like it was just yesterday that the Los Angeles Police Department found itself outgunned by a couple of bank-robbing punks armed with banned, fully automatic AK-47s and wearing body armor. I’m just a guitar player, and I am never outgunned. Being outgunned is a choice, a foolish, suicidal choice, and everyone knows it. It boggles the mind to try to comprehend someone showing up with a nonlethal beanbag gun when it is widely known that human traffickers and drug smugglers and other assorted subhuman debris are often heavily armed. Common sense reels in disbelief. Word has it that logic is now on the endangered species list. I’m well aware some of you on the left have mastered the art of mind-boggling anti-logic and are desperately seeking to find some way to disagree with me. Knowing that you live in the bizzaro world where logic is outlawed, let’s say for argument’s sake that you hear an intruder kicking down your front door in the middle of the night, and you have the choice between a 12-gauge shotgun and a fly swatter at your disposal to protect your family. Which are you going to grab? Only Timothy Leary and Cass Sunstein fans would reach for the fly swatter. All you other liberals would turn into clear-thinking conservatives for at least a minute or so and splatter the intruder all over the living-room wall with your shotgun. Good for you. Stay with me. So now let’s say America is your home, and you have armed bandits routinely coming into your home. Would you show up with a beanbag gun or an M4 rifle with state-of-the-art optics? Case closed. Numbnuts lose again to a tsunami of common sense. The way to stop this insanity before it becomes an even bigger national security problem is to issue a “shoot to kill” policy against all armed invaders. Because I’m actually a docile, peaceful man who doesn’t want to see anyone hurt, I will compromise and agree to a policy of firing one round over the heads of armed intruders. If they do not immediately lay down their weapons and raise their hands in surrender, then shoot them four times, center mass. Problem solved. Armed invaders always must be considered extremely dangerous. Superior firepower is the order of the day, not nonlethal beanbags. Let’s leave the beanbags to kindergarten classes. Tragically, this is what we have come to expect from an administration that will not even refer to Muslim voodoo whackjobs who commit murder and mayhem against Americans while shouting “God Is Great” in Arabic as terrorists. How deep is the denial? Liberalism is clearly a mental disorder and liberals are outgunned. Ted Nugent is an American rock ‘n’ roll, sporting and political activist icon. He is the author of “Ted, White and Blue: The Nugent Manifesto” and “God, Guns & Rock ‘N’ Roll” (Regnery Publishing).
    22846 Posted by Chris Avena
  • Beanbags are fine for the playground but not for a border showdown By Ted Nugent The Washington Times      6:03 p.m., Tuesday, March 8, 2011   Being a Border Patrol agent on our southern border has got to be a very difficult, harrowing job. It is surely an even tougher job when our agents are told to launch “nonlethal” beanbags at armed, illegal intruders. Rule No. 1: Never bring a beanbag to a gunfight. Think of this: With an orgy of high-powered drug-gang violence just across our border that already has claimed roughly 35,000 lives, plus numerous reports of armed, illegal intruders crossing over the border and shooting at our police officers and committing other violent crimes against American citizens, some politically correct bureaucratic idiot directs our Border Patrol agents to launch beanbags at machine-gun-toting, violent invaders. The result of this brain-dead, irresponsible mindset: My fellow Michiganiac, Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, was shot dead by an armed illegal intruder on Dec. 14 in Arizona. This policy, of course, is lunacy defined. Only a wild-eyed lunatic would force brave, law enforcement officers into dangerous situations without adequate firepower to stop danger in its tracks. These are the same uber-left-wing fools who sputter and scream how our law enforcement agents are “outgunned,” ignorantly blaming failed gun control laws while knowingly sending our warriors into battle with phenomenally inferior firepower. In fact, beanbags have no fire power, unless you are waging war on small kittens. To add insult to the tragic death of Agent Terry,it now appears that certain bureaucrats within the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) allowed a known gun-running thug, whom they were investigating, to buy and transport the guns into Mexico that were used to kill Agent Terry. Call me crazy, but I thought law enforcers would have learned their lesson by now. It seems like it was just yesterday that the Los Angeles Police Department found itself outgunned by a couple of bank-robbing punks armed with banned, fully automatic AK-47s and wearing body armor. I’m just a guitar player, and I am never outgunned. Being outgunned is a choice, a foolish, suicidal choice, and everyone knows it. It boggles the mind to try to comprehend someone showing up with a nonlethal beanbag gun when it is widely known that human traffickers and drug smugglers and other assorted subhuman debris are often heavily armed. Common sense reels in disbelief. Word has it that logic is now on the endangered species list. I’m well aware some of you on the left have mastered the art of mind-boggling anti-logic and are desperately seeking to find some way to disagree with me. Knowing that you live in the bizzaro world where logic is outlawed, let’s say for argument’s sake that you hear an intruder kicking down your front door in the middle of the night, and you have the choice between a 12-gauge shotgun and a fly swatter at your disposal to protect your family. Which are you going to grab? Only Timothy Leary and Cass Sunstein fans would reach for the fly swatter. All you other liberals would turn into clear-thinking conservatives for at least a minute or so and splatter the intruder all over the living-room wall with your shotgun. Good for you. Stay with me. So now let’s say America is your home, and you have armed bandits routinely coming into your home. Would you show up with a beanbag gun or an M4 rifle with state-of-the-art optics? Case closed. Numbnuts lose again to a tsunami of common sense. The way to stop this insanity before it becomes an even bigger national security problem is to issue a “shoot to kill” policy against all armed invaders. Because I’m actually a docile, peaceful man who doesn’t want to see anyone hurt, I will compromise and agree to a policy of firing one round over the heads of armed intruders. If they do not immediately lay down their weapons and raise their hands in surrender, then shoot them four times, center mass. Problem solved. Armed invaders always must be considered extremely dangerous. Superior firepower is the order of the day, not nonlethal beanbags. Let’s leave the beanbags to kindergarten classes. Tragically, this is what we have come to expect from an administration that will not even refer to Muslim voodoo whackjobs who commit murder and mayhem against Americans while shouting “God Is Great” in Arabic as terrorists. How deep is the denial? Liberalism is clearly a mental disorder and liberals are outgunned. Ted Nugent is an American rock ‘n’ roll, sporting and political activist icon. He is the author of “Ted, White and Blue: The Nugent Manifesto” and “God, Guns & Rock ‘N’ Roll” (Regnery Publishing).
    Mar 09, 2011 22846
  • 03 Feb 2011
    Get to know SeeMeHunt by Neil on January 25th, 2011 Posted In: SeeMeHunt, Chris Avena, SeeMeHunt Today, the Social Network is probably the most powerful tool for just about anything. Keeping in touch with friends or family, following celebrities or just another form of advertising. These such social networks are very common in the world. Pretty much, any website you visit these days has the Blue “F” icon for Facebook, or lower case “t” for Twitter prominent somewhere on the page. I’d like to mention to you about a new and upcoming social website specifically for the hunting niche. A website born last May that has steadily grown to over 1000 registered members. I recently discovered SeeMeHunt after Following this @SeeMeHunt on Twitter. Curious, I clicked on his link provided in his Tweet which brought me to a familiar looking looking web site. I could almost compare it to Facebook but for this guy looking for a new venue of sharing my hunting experiences and getting to know other hunters like me, I figured the creator was a genius! I was honestly frustrated of the same old hunting and fishing forums and jumping all over their sites reading new and different threads pertaining to different items. Here I was staring at a new site and immediately registered as a member. I really struggle to stop making the comparison to Facebook as it acts and feels a lot like it but has it own uniqueness that makes SeeMeHunt one of a kind. So I quickly began fishing around with the site and uploading my profile picture. Entered a few bits of information about myself to share with others. The basics were done. Next was interacting with the members. It became apparent who the creator was after a friendly welcome message appeared at the top of the News Feed page and shortly after a personal message welcoming me to the site and explaining a little bit about it’s purpose. We exchanged a few more messages in the next couple days. Since then, I check SeeMeHunt almost daily now.   Chris & his big boar So who was this faceless person I was chatting with? I only had a name “Chris Avena” and a distant profile picture of a guy standing behind a huge boar with his face slightly shadowed by his hat. So without further ado, here are some Q&A’s for getting to know Chris Avena – creator of SeeMeHunt.com.  UGA: What inspired you to start a hunting related social network site?-How long has the site been up?-How long had you been “planning” a hunting social web site? C.A.: I have been hunting for 30 years. What inspired me to Start SeeMeHunt.com was thedesire to spend more time doing what I love. I have always loved Hunting and beingoutdoors. I had a vision of creating a place where hunters from around the world canmeet and get to know each other. I wanted SeeMeHunt to be a place where hunters couldshare their Knowledge, Friendships and Experience. I launched the site in May 2010 andI am very pleased at how well received it has been.UGA: Do you feel your page layout stands out much better than the other typical forumlayouts?- Do you feel it has its advantages or disadvantages?C.A.: When I had envisioned SeeMeHunt.com I really wanted something that was more interactive than the standard blog or forum format. I wanted a place where hunters can meet, socialize & get to know each other. SeeMeHunt is an ever evolving cycle. Hunters get to indulge themselves and interact with other SeeMeHunt members. There are no disadvantages when everyone is enjoying their favorite sport. This makes SeeMeHunt become an everyday adventure. UGA: Do you have web design or computer technology background? If not, What is yourbackground (work experiences)? C.A.: My time is spent on certain aspects of my website. I have a web designer who works with me but I am responsible for every aspect of SeeMeHunt. UGA: What are some of your most memorable hunting experiences? C.A.: I would have to say that this past October during bow season when I came face to face with a big 350lb black bear at 30 yards was something that I will never forget. It was just about dusk & I was waiting to meet up with my hunting partner Bill and I see this flash of black about 100 yards off. I looked again and I see this black bear heading in my direction. I was on the other side of the stream sitting in a natural ground blind. The Bear seemed to be walking at a normal pace looking for a place to cross the stream. The bear appeared to have a big gate & was closing ground pretty fast. I had an arrow knocked but I couldn’t draw. It kept looking in my direction. It seemed like the closer this bear got to me, the bigger it got. Finally it stopped about 30 yards away. It found the place where he was going to cross the stream. All he had to do was walk five steps down the embankment and I would be sitting on a nice bear rug while I was writing this story. His nose went up testing the wind. I knew that I was busted. Suddenly, he looks right in my eyes! I was perfectly still. Focused on a potential shot staring into his black piercing eyes, both, waiting for the other to flinch. Then he put his head down, which is an aggressive posture. He was testing me but I didn’t move and I didn’t give ground. I knew at that point that either he was going to charge or he was going to retreat. I didn’t even have a chest shot at this point but I was still focused on getting one. Then, just like that, he turned and walked away. As I watched him walking away I realized that I was not nervous or scared about being that close to this potentially dangerous animal and that scared me. That observation is just something that stands out in my mind. UGA: Have you traveled to any foreign countries to hunt? (If not countries, any other states)- If so, what did you hunt? C.A.: To date, I have not, however I have traveled extensively out side the U.S. but not to hunt. This year I do have a September bow hunting trip for deer in Kentucky and a bear hunting trip in Maine. I do have a several trips envisioned. Those trips would be part pleasure, part business.UGA: You recently went to the SHOT Show in Las Vegas. Can you explain what that is?- Had you been to Vegas before?     Chris with Lee & Tiffany C.A.: Yes, although I have been to Vegas several times in the past, this was my first Shot Show. The Shot Show is a trade show for the Outdoor Industry where all of the manufacturers showcase all of their latest products. The Shot Show exceeded all of my expectations. I saw everything from the latest rifles and hand guns by Thompson, CVA, Browning to the latest Tree Stands by Ameristep, The New Diesel UTV by Badboy Buggies, The latest Yamaha Grizzlie and the latest by C‘mere Deer, Mossey Oak, Wild Game Innovations, Primos and more. There were celebrity hunters there as well. I had the opportunity to meet Jim Shockey and his daughter Eva, Lee & Tiffany and a few others.   Chris & Jim Shocky They were all warm and friendly people. The whole scene was pretty overwhelming at first but you get into the swing of it pretty quickly. UGA:  Did you go for pleasure or business? C.A.: I did go to promote SeeMeHunt.com but although I was there for business, it really was a pleasure being there. Do we really consider it work when you really love what you do? I am very passionate about making SeeMeHunt.com the largest Social Network for Hunting and Fishing very soon. UGA: In your opinion, who had some of the best booths there? C.A.: Every company brought something unique to the show. To me, it seemed like the larger the manufacturer, the more detailed and elaborate the displays were. Sure I have my favorites but some things are better left unsaid.   UGA: Is there anything new coming out that is note worthy?   Jim's Daughter Eva Shocky & Chris C.A.: Thompson came out with the New Venture rifle that is in various calibers. It is just a beautiful Rifle. CVA also came out with some new models. Ameristep has the new Bone Collector line of Tree Stands with the sling back seats – very cool. There is a new wind direction detector by Firefly, Oilfield Camo, The new slimed down Thermacell with their new holster that you can clip to your day pack. From the moment you walk through the doors to the show you feel like you are in a hunter’s paradise. UGA: What is your hunting preference (Bow, Rifle, Shotgun, other?) C.A.: I had always been a rifle hunter. Over the past few years I have started bow hunting and I absolutely love it. I regret waiting so long to start bow hunting because now I am hooked on it. This past season I started hunting Black Powder as well. With each season that presents that perfect shooting opportunity – That is my favorite. UGA: Being from NY, do you have a lot of access to hunting land? Is it Private or State land? C.A.: Honestly, I think that I have hunted everywhere there is to hunt in New York. There is plenty of state land to hunt but I have always tried to stay on private land. I just felt more comfortable…..and safer. UGA: Do you have any trophies on the wall? Chris @ SHOT Show C.A.: Yes but do we ever have enough of them? UGA: Besides your own web site, where else can your members follow you on the internet? C.A.: I am on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Digg all under SeeMeHunt. UGA: In closing, what else do you feel we should know about you or your web site? C.A.: SeeMeHunt.com is open to anyone worldwide. I am especially fond of the diversity of cultures that it has brought together, sharing not only their hunting stories and experiences but sharing their lives as well. SeeMeHunt.com is expanding into other areas. Our store will be expanding its product line. We are working on a New SeeMeHunt Spice Rub. We have New Sponsors that will be coming aboard as well. We will be planning a few Discounted Hunts for SeeMeHunt Members. Being a new site, we have a lot of plans ahead of us. I personally enjoy target shooting with a bow, rifle or muzzle loader. I like to try out new weapons and evaluate the performance of them. I am always trying to expand my knowledge of the industry and I enjoy reading about it, watching something about it on one of the hunting channels. I also like to cook and try out new game recipes. I enjoy trying new types of food. I just had some alligator last week. No – It didn’t taste like chicken. It was good though. My favorites are duck and rabbit but I will try just about any type of food once. You never know what you will enjoy unless you try it. I want to Thank You Chris for taking the time to answer my questions. I hope after reading this you will go and check his site out and join myself and the other 1000+ members. We’d love to hear from you and share our experiences with you there!
    21287 Posted by Chris Avena
  • Get to know SeeMeHunt by Neil on January 25th, 2011 Posted In: SeeMeHunt, Chris Avena, SeeMeHunt Today, the Social Network is probably the most powerful tool for just about anything. Keeping in touch with friends or family, following celebrities or just another form of advertising. These such social networks are very common in the world. Pretty much, any website you visit these days has the Blue “F” icon for Facebook, or lower case “t” for Twitter prominent somewhere on the page. I’d like to mention to you about a new and upcoming social website specifically for the hunting niche. A website born last May that has steadily grown to over 1000 registered members. I recently discovered SeeMeHunt after Following this @SeeMeHunt on Twitter. Curious, I clicked on his link provided in his Tweet which brought me to a familiar looking looking web site. I could almost compare it to Facebook but for this guy looking for a new venue of sharing my hunting experiences and getting to know other hunters like me, I figured the creator was a genius! I was honestly frustrated of the same old hunting and fishing forums and jumping all over their sites reading new and different threads pertaining to different items. Here I was staring at a new site and immediately registered as a member. I really struggle to stop making the comparison to Facebook as it acts and feels a lot like it but has it own uniqueness that makes SeeMeHunt one of a kind. So I quickly began fishing around with the site and uploading my profile picture. Entered a few bits of information about myself to share with others. The basics were done. Next was interacting with the members. It became apparent who the creator was after a friendly welcome message appeared at the top of the News Feed page and shortly after a personal message welcoming me to the site and explaining a little bit about it’s purpose. We exchanged a few more messages in the next couple days. Since then, I check SeeMeHunt almost daily now.   Chris & his big boar So who was this faceless person I was chatting with? I only had a name “Chris Avena” and a distant profile picture of a guy standing behind a huge boar with his face slightly shadowed by his hat. So without further ado, here are some Q&A’s for getting to know Chris Avena – creator of SeeMeHunt.com.  UGA: What inspired you to start a hunting related social network site?-How long has the site been up?-How long had you been “planning” a hunting social web site? C.A.: I have been hunting for 30 years. What inspired me to Start SeeMeHunt.com was thedesire to spend more time doing what I love. I have always loved Hunting and beingoutdoors. I had a vision of creating a place where hunters from around the world canmeet and get to know each other. I wanted SeeMeHunt to be a place where hunters couldshare their Knowledge, Friendships and Experience. I launched the site in May 2010 andI am very pleased at how well received it has been.UGA: Do you feel your page layout stands out much better than the other typical forumlayouts?- Do you feel it has its advantages or disadvantages?C.A.: When I had envisioned SeeMeHunt.com I really wanted something that was more interactive than the standard blog or forum format. I wanted a place where hunters can meet, socialize & get to know each other. SeeMeHunt is an ever evolving cycle. Hunters get to indulge themselves and interact with other SeeMeHunt members. There are no disadvantages when everyone is enjoying their favorite sport. This makes SeeMeHunt become an everyday adventure. UGA: Do you have web design or computer technology background? If not, What is yourbackground (work experiences)? C.A.: My time is spent on certain aspects of my website. I have a web designer who works with me but I am responsible for every aspect of SeeMeHunt. UGA: What are some of your most memorable hunting experiences? C.A.: I would have to say that this past October during bow season when I came face to face with a big 350lb black bear at 30 yards was something that I will never forget. It was just about dusk & I was waiting to meet up with my hunting partner Bill and I see this flash of black about 100 yards off. I looked again and I see this black bear heading in my direction. I was on the other side of the stream sitting in a natural ground blind. The Bear seemed to be walking at a normal pace looking for a place to cross the stream. The bear appeared to have a big gate & was closing ground pretty fast. I had an arrow knocked but I couldn’t draw. It kept looking in my direction. It seemed like the closer this bear got to me, the bigger it got. Finally it stopped about 30 yards away. It found the place where he was going to cross the stream. All he had to do was walk five steps down the embankment and I would be sitting on a nice bear rug while I was writing this story. His nose went up testing the wind. I knew that I was busted. Suddenly, he looks right in my eyes! I was perfectly still. Focused on a potential shot staring into his black piercing eyes, both, waiting for the other to flinch. Then he put his head down, which is an aggressive posture. He was testing me but I didn’t move and I didn’t give ground. I knew at that point that either he was going to charge or he was going to retreat. I didn’t even have a chest shot at this point but I was still focused on getting one. Then, just like that, he turned and walked away. As I watched him walking away I realized that I was not nervous or scared about being that close to this potentially dangerous animal and that scared me. That observation is just something that stands out in my mind. UGA: Have you traveled to any foreign countries to hunt? (If not countries, any other states)- If so, what did you hunt? C.A.: To date, I have not, however I have traveled extensively out side the U.S. but not to hunt. This year I do have a September bow hunting trip for deer in Kentucky and a bear hunting trip in Maine. I do have a several trips envisioned. Those trips would be part pleasure, part business.UGA: You recently went to the SHOT Show in Las Vegas. Can you explain what that is?- Had you been to Vegas before?     Chris with Lee & Tiffany C.A.: Yes, although I have been to Vegas several times in the past, this was my first Shot Show. The Shot Show is a trade show for the Outdoor Industry where all of the manufacturers showcase all of their latest products. The Shot Show exceeded all of my expectations. I saw everything from the latest rifles and hand guns by Thompson, CVA, Browning to the latest Tree Stands by Ameristep, The New Diesel UTV by Badboy Buggies, The latest Yamaha Grizzlie and the latest by C‘mere Deer, Mossey Oak, Wild Game Innovations, Primos and more. There were celebrity hunters there as well. I had the opportunity to meet Jim Shockey and his daughter Eva, Lee & Tiffany and a few others.   Chris & Jim Shocky They were all warm and friendly people. The whole scene was pretty overwhelming at first but you get into the swing of it pretty quickly. UGA:  Did you go for pleasure or business? C.A.: I did go to promote SeeMeHunt.com but although I was there for business, it really was a pleasure being there. Do we really consider it work when you really love what you do? I am very passionate about making SeeMeHunt.com the largest Social Network for Hunting and Fishing very soon. UGA: In your opinion, who had some of the best booths there? C.A.: Every company brought something unique to the show. To me, it seemed like the larger the manufacturer, the more detailed and elaborate the displays were. Sure I have my favorites but some things are better left unsaid.   UGA: Is there anything new coming out that is note worthy?   Jim's Daughter Eva Shocky & Chris C.A.: Thompson came out with the New Venture rifle that is in various calibers. It is just a beautiful Rifle. CVA also came out with some new models. Ameristep has the new Bone Collector line of Tree Stands with the sling back seats – very cool. There is a new wind direction detector by Firefly, Oilfield Camo, The new slimed down Thermacell with their new holster that you can clip to your day pack. From the moment you walk through the doors to the show you feel like you are in a hunter’s paradise. UGA: What is your hunting preference (Bow, Rifle, Shotgun, other?) C.A.: I had always been a rifle hunter. Over the past few years I have started bow hunting and I absolutely love it. I regret waiting so long to start bow hunting because now I am hooked on it. This past season I started hunting Black Powder as well. With each season that presents that perfect shooting opportunity – That is my favorite. UGA: Being from NY, do you have a lot of access to hunting land? Is it Private or State land? C.A.: Honestly, I think that I have hunted everywhere there is to hunt in New York. There is plenty of state land to hunt but I have always tried to stay on private land. I just felt more comfortable…..and safer. UGA: Do you have any trophies on the wall? Chris @ SHOT Show C.A.: Yes but do we ever have enough of them? UGA: Besides your own web site, where else can your members follow you on the internet? C.A.: I am on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Digg all under SeeMeHunt. UGA: In closing, what else do you feel we should know about you or your web site? C.A.: SeeMeHunt.com is open to anyone worldwide. I am especially fond of the diversity of cultures that it has brought together, sharing not only their hunting stories and experiences but sharing their lives as well. SeeMeHunt.com is expanding into other areas. Our store will be expanding its product line. We are working on a New SeeMeHunt Spice Rub. We have New Sponsors that will be coming aboard as well. We will be planning a few Discounted Hunts for SeeMeHunt Members. Being a new site, we have a lot of plans ahead of us. I personally enjoy target shooting with a bow, rifle or muzzle loader. I like to try out new weapons and evaluate the performance of them. I am always trying to expand my knowledge of the industry and I enjoy reading about it, watching something about it on one of the hunting channels. I also like to cook and try out new game recipes. I enjoy trying new types of food. I just had some alligator last week. No – It didn’t taste like chicken. It was good though. My favorites are duck and rabbit but I will try just about any type of food once. You never know what you will enjoy unless you try it. I want to Thank You Chris for taking the time to answer my questions. I hope after reading this you will go and check his site out and join myself and the other 1000+ members. We’d love to hear from you and share our experiences with you there!
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