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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Nikon Monarch BDC scopes

Looking through my predator hunting magazine I had a goal this time. Not the latest electronic caller or trick, or the fine coyote hunting in the North East, but I wanted to look for a scope to sit on top of my Model 700 Remington in .243. So the article comparing scopes was right on target comparing 10 scopes and the benefits and limitations of each one. I was a little discouraged at first as all of the ones offered were way out of my price range, $2,300, $1,200 I mean I don't have that kind of money. Then I noticed the Monarch from Nikon, certainly affordable, and with mounts and rings I was in for just under $500.00. Now I am the kind of guy who will not just drop $500.00 on a toy for me to hunt with, especially knowing that hunting is not easy on your weapon or equipment and if I own it I use it, But out of all the high end scopes that were reviewed the Monarch came in second place and was listed as the "Best Value". So I start looking for this piece of glass at my local sporting goods store, and a couple of local gun shops in the Laurel area. That in itself was a learning experience believe me, but another story. First I did not want to pay the tax, I am taxed to death, for the boat, the ramp, the equipment, my license I am sure many of you feel the same, and I live in Delaware where we have no sales tax, so I knew I could save a cool 6%. But apparently this is a very popular scope as everyone had it on back order. Then Cabellas comes through and has it in stock with a three day delivery, plus I can get all the mounting hardware for it at one time and NO SHIPPING. A quick stroke of the keyboard, some info and I am a scope owner with my own tax revolt, going on. So I check out and notice that I was hit with the shipping, a quick callback and that is taken care of, untill I get the scope of course and sure enough the shipping is on there. Monday I will get this taken care of hopefully, so much for my own tax revolt! Now I have a bunch of parts and one scope, a rifle so off to Gander to see Mr. Tom and get this mass of parts put together into a critter getter hole puncher. Now if you have never met Tom he is one heck of a guy, always ready to take time to talk to you and help you out with your weapon. I had him mount and bore sight my gun and do a little trigger work to get her to break at 3 lbs. I have a Mauser that is a deer taking piece of equipment with adjustable set triggers, once you set her do not touch the trigger until you are ready to shoot, because she goes off real easy, to easy in the hands of the inexperienced in fact. But Tom will get it right for me, then I am going to hit the range to dial her in and find the bullet she will like. Until then I will keep the 17 ready, and waiting for the next trip to the range.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Best Fishing Lures

Okay I am going out on a limb here and putting my reputation on the line with some of you people who like to fish. I am going to talk about possibly some of the best fishing lures of all times. Now I know that this is my opinion and we know about opinions but here goes.
FRESH WATER:
 The J-9 broken back Rapella in black and silver. If I could have only one lure in my survival tackle box it would be this one. I have caught more fish and a greater variety of fish on this particular plug. it has a wiggle that fish find just to good to pass up and it is super easy to fish. Cast it out and let it sit on the surface of the water till the rings get twelve or thirteen feet out from it. If you haven't had it smashed yet give it a twitch and let it sit again. Then reel fast for about six or eight cast and let it come to the top and sit maybe give it a twitch. I have gone to this lure many times and it is one of my favorite plugs. 
 RED DEVIL red and white striped spoon, a killer for pickerel and pike, and fished thru the weeds it is a good bass lure. I take off the treble hooks and put a single hook out the back to make it a little more weedless.
 SALT WATER: The bucktail has got to be responsible for more fish in the cooler than any other fish attractor in history. A good one for perch or rock fish, rigged with a piece of cut bait it will catch a catfish.
If you get in a real jam you can make a bucktail with a short piece of nylon rope, for the bucktail portion, and some fishing line. Never know when you might have to improvise!

Not your ol Red Ryder

Looking through one of my hunting mags I noticed an article some time ago about a person hunting with a custom Air Rifle. Figuring that this someone with a lot of money and out of my range I gave it a read and filed it away with those African Safari hunts I read about. But like a bad penny these stories kept making the rounds and this past month I saw a full feature article on a guy who shot a deer with one. Now I am thinking that this might be something I would be interested in especially considering the current shortage of ammo occasionally. I could not find but three boxes of .243 ammo today in Gander Mtn.
Now they have a bunch of these rifles in many popular calibers, up to 45 and you can charge em like a paintball gun. The ones I was reading about allowed you to shoot thirty times before you had to recharge, and each charge was the same first to last. I can only assume that these guns will only get better and soon we will be seeing some real high performance equipment for us to use. I mean already you can get for under $200.00 a air rifle that puts a pellet down range in excess of 1200 feet per second, and that is fast enough to take out most small game like rabbits and squirrels. Now I understand that these rifles are very accurate in their range, but tend to lose energy quickly. I cannot wait to see what this new sport will bring, because it won't be long before someone sees a way to regulate, tax, track, and list those of us who enjoy the shooting sports.

Friday, February 26, 2010

JOBS?

As a teacher I get much pleasure of seeing my students when they come back. They are working  getting into the real world. Now I tell them it is because they are paying taxes and setting me up for retirement! Not really, but that is a good thing to be working especially now. This young man graduated last year and was part of the team that took second place in the Nation for welding fabrication. He is now building Nuclear Powered Submarines, enrolled into a 5 year program that he is getting paid for, and putting the weld training he got at the local high school to use. He will have excellent vacation time, great benefits and a well laid out salary advancement schedule allowing him to plan for his financial independence, Not a bad job to have right out of high school, and a free college education. Here was a young man that looked for a job that would allow him to achieve his goals, worked hard to make sure he could get that job, and is now well on his way to achieving those goals he set for himself, Once again proving that Luck is when Preparation meets opportunity.

Other outdoor sites for ya

Ben G Outdoors is a follower of this site and has his own that you might find interesting. A recent post is on a HUGE black bear killed by a combine, you will have to read it to get the whole story! Google Ben G Outdoors and enjoy!

Boy Scout spaghetti Dinner

Tomorrow night the Bethesda Boy Scout troop will be having it's annual spaghetti dinner. Now this is a special occasion as the head chef, Robert Parker will be preparing his 10th dinner, As a former scout leader I can attest to the quality of Roberts red gravy and the pasta is always cooked just right, never mushy as can be experienced occasionally. You can get a plate of this pasta with a couple of meatballs (no raisins) for under $10.00 and the money goes directly to the troop. no middle man getting the majority of the money for "expenses". Scout tropps run on fund raising and each troop has it's own Delmar troop 174 had for years a chicken bbq that was the backbone of their fund raising.
Now one thing Scouts like to do is keep it's young men on the go, go to camp, go to merit badge workshops, skiing, and canoeing and it all cost money. Not every Scout can afford to come up with the money to do the things that the troop may offer, so by participating in fund raising each scout has the opportunity to earn his share toward these activities.
So tomorrow between 4 and 7 troop 149 members will be serving spaghetti  at Bethesda church in Salisbury cost is $7.00. I am sure that they will accept any tips offered.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Red Beans and Rice

I love to cook and to do a good BBQ, so red beans go right along with that. Now I make these for my family and friends when I do a party and they are always a hit with everyone. Now these are not your normal red beans and rice, these are some serious  straight up New Orleans Style beans and the recipe comes from one of my favorite cookbooks The New Orleans cookbook by Rima and Richard Collin. it was given to me by a really good friend of mine who is from new Orleans and makes these sometimes for functions at work. here is the recipe for those of you who might want to give these a try.
2lb of dried kidney beans soaked overnight in some cold water
1/2 cup thin sliced green shallot
1/2 cup of chopped green pepper
1 1/2 Tbs. finely minced garlic
2Tbs. finely chopped parsley
1 lb of seasoning ham cut into 1 ich cubes
1 lb of pickled pork (you will use salt pork, do not add any additional salt if using salt pork)
1 large ham bone with some meat on it like from a Christmas or Easter ham, get it sawed in half
!tbs of salt 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1/8 tbs cayenne
1/8 tsp red pepper pods
2 bay leaves broken
1/2 tsp of thyme
1/8 tsp of basil 
2 qts cold water
Drain the beans and put them is a colander to drain, get a heavy 10 quart kettle cast iron is the very best, and place the drained beans along with all the ingredients in the pot cover with the cold water. bring all this to a boil, then lower and let simmer 21/2 -3 hours stiring occassionally and scraping down the sides and mashing some of the beans to thicken them. If they appear too dry add just a bit of water or stock. Make some white rice and serve the hot rice with a ladel of beans over the top. This is some good eating especially with some pulled pork sandwich!

New puppy grade school

okay your dog has learned some general commands, like "NO" and "Stop that Noise" is now housebroken and finding his place in your pack. Let's go ahead and enter him into grade school so he becomes a good citizen when you take him out. So let's start with walking on a leash at heel. When you give your dog the command to heel he should come to your right or left side and stand or sit waiting your command to "Walk or Stay". To get your dog to heel is really easy and I assure you that if you give it just 10 min a day he will have it in three days MAX! Place your choke collar on your lead and place it on your dog, he will more than likely have no issue with this part of the training. If he does, make it a game and place the collar around it's neck and giving the dog much praise when they let's you place it on them. A small piece of a treat will make it very easy for them to accept the collar and lead. Keep in mind you have to make it fun at this point and the treats will help you along in your training. Now stand and with the lead in your hand make it short enough for you to control the dog. I like to hold the lead in the right hand, and placing the left hand close to the snap on the lead attached to the collar. Smack your left leg with your hand and give the command to "HEEL" use a stern voice, and commanding tone pulling the dog in close and reinforcing the command to "HEEL". If your dog sits or lays down that is not a problem at this time. When you get the dog in place give him some praise and play with it for a bit when the dog is out of heel during your play repeat the exercise, pulling it in close and using the command HEEL. In three days your dog will come to your left side (my preference) on the lead, every time you give the command to heel. Believe me this makes the command "WALK" easy to lead into and if you are working your dog at heel walking along side of you almost comes natural. Now this does take 10-15 min a day of training and praise playing, and it helps if you can do it at the same time everyday. Keep at your training and your dog will be through grade school in no time.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Fixing your tin boat

Okay the ol stump jumper is getting a little long in the tooth but you just can't swing $800.00 for a new hull, and that hole in the bottom is sure enough making your friends concerned to the point that they won't go with you anymore. So what do you do with this kind of problem? Well if the rivets are the source of the problem then you only have one recourse and that is to tighten up every rivet in the boat. Not only the ones leaking but all of them. When you tighten only one you cause another one to leak, and start on the keel and and work your way to the chines. A small air compressor and a rivet setting tool with a bucking bar, a good friend, and a place to work make the job one you can do in an afternoon if you keep at it. Now hearing protection is def, needed here as the one inside the hull with the bucking bar is going to get a lot of continuous noise. While the person on the outside takes the pneumatic rivet setting tool the person on the inside holds the bucking bar against the rivet, and when you pull the trigger the noise is going to be loud. Start dead center of the boat and work your way fore and aft, port and starboard. It will not take a lot of effort to reset the rivets and the work goes quick. If you have a hole in the hull you can patch it with a piece of aluminum and some set rivets. But make sure the aluminum is of a grade suitable for salt water immersion if not it will be consumed very quickly by the sea. If you can find a old aluminum boat you might be able to cut out a piece with a zip wheel in a drill  end grinder, or jig saw. Cut the patch at least two inches larger than the repair, and drill four holes in each of the corners, use a good silicone and coat one side with a even coating. but not real thick. The silicone will act like an adhesive and hold the part in place while you drill the holes thru the boat and put in the rivets. Drill out the corner holes and insert the four rivets, and set these first. Now drill the next hole and set that rivet. Do this for every rivet, one hole one rivet until you finish that quarter. Then go to the opposite quarter and do the same thing until you have all the rivets set and the patch securely in place. after using the boat a couple of time tighten up the repair if necessary. Now naturally if you are taking this boat out in the sound or ocean I would not do this type of repair, but for your flounder pounder or frog gigger this should work fine.

Weather or not?

Okay I cannot believe this. We are once again faced with a serious weather pattern forming up and headed our way. now I don't know about you but I am about bad weathered out! I mean Mother nature can be a hard woman sometimes and she is delivering a lethal  dose right now. But how does it affect us, well in my line of work it comes to a halt and I am forced to be off when believe me I would rather be working. But how about wildlife? There are areas under water that I haven't  ever seen wet, increased nesting and feeding sites for ducks and loss of nesting for turkeys. Some trees do not like wet feet and some need it to survive so there is habitat change to consider. marshes flooding over vegetation and forest and more failing septic producing increased nitrates. So just how much can an area take before it is a major change to it's flora and fauna? Well I am no scientest but I will tell you this that if we keep getting this kind of weather, I am leaving here!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

dog killers running loose

It seems that someone in Sussex county has decided to be the judge and jury in a  neighborhood just outside of Delmar/Laurel area. In the past month, two dogs have been murdered within site of their homes in the Robinhood Road area, off of Whitesville/ Gumboro road. These dogs have been shot with a small caliber gun and the shots are in the neck and chest area. This victim was kept by a couple and she works at the vets office, so all resources are being used to find out who did this. The Delaware State police have been notified as well as the SPCA. I know there are dog laws, license and rules on being restrained, we live in the country and are surrounded by hundreds of acres of farm land, but these dogs are within site of their homes when murdered. Someone is randomly shooting kids and family pets, and I hope they are caught and pay the price.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Keeping Bees

I like to keep bees and have for a few years. When I was a kid a old guy down the road had a couple of hives and I would go down there and worry him to death as he tried to work his bees. I lived on a chicken farm out near the airport and wanted to have a couple of hives out back in the hay field. My Mom was not so keen on the ideal and my Dad really did not want to mess with them so I never had my own hive. Fast foreward to 1982 and I am living in Florida and  working at the Nuclear plant down in St. Lucie.  My neighbor had bees on a big scale 60 hives that he used in the Orange groves.  Since he needed a hand I would work with him moving and robbing the hives and learning the work that goes with that kinda farming. In return I had Orange Blossom honey by the gallon and an Education that could only be learned at the hand of the master so to speak. Now at the ranch I was keeping three hives but am down to one right now as the winter has been hard on em and that one could be in a way.
Bee keeping is not for everyone but everyone depends on the little critter for the food we eat. Even keeping a single hive out back you help make for a better garden crop, and a few more apples, more melons and oranges.  If you would like to start keeping a hive in your area it is not difficult. In fact you can keep them in an apartment if you are able to give them direct access to the world. Stings are not really a problem for most people and even have some homeopathic healing powers, for people with joint pain and MS. I am hoping that my hive made it over the winter, and if you want to take a look at equipment The R. Kelly co. is a good place to start.

Wicomico County Students and snow

Today students in Wicomico County returned to school after the winter storm, and for some I think it was a welcome relief to get back to school. Now I have to brag just a little on some of my students that I teach at the Career and Technology Education dept. located at Parkside High School. As you can see these two men are working outside in a real world situation, preparing for the real world of work. Some may go to college, some in the military, some will live and surf Maui,  but we will all go to work!  
Now this project was waiting in the parking lot for me this morning, and it just had to be done today, tomorrow would not do. So we had the person back into the compound and drop it off, with the guarantee it would be done tomorrow morning. When my Junior class got there they all jumped in on clearing the snow and setting up the welding equipment. They then pulled the leads out to the equipment, and prepared the area for welding. When my senior class arrived they only had a little grinding and in an hour had the project finished, and the equipment put away. I called the customer and told him his trailer was ready for him to pick up today ahead of schedule, and was ready to go to work. I am also proud to say that both of the young men who performed the work were AWS certified welders. This is the hidden jewel of Wicomico County Education.

Who follows who here?

I have found a couple of other "Sportsmen" blog sites that I have enjoyed following  since I got into my site. I am just getting to the point where I can post a video and some pictures from my camera, and I have no ideal how to see how many visit the site. I asked another local blogger how to do that, but got no response, I guess some are real insecure. I have also noticed that some of the local blogs are now covering some hunting and NRA news,  I have no problem sharing anything, and personally think it is a good ideal.
I read an article that was on another site about a farmer who was late cutting corn and got a huge bear with his combine! Wonder if that is a legal form of harvest! Hopefully I will be able to figure out how to link Delmarva sportsmen with the other blogs, and those of us who enjoy the outdoor sportsmen will have even more resources to draw from. So it is back to work today finally! I don't mind telling you that a major storm during deer season is okay a few extra days to hunt but to be locked down with no chance of getting out is killing a brother!!!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Eating ribs and drinking beer

Payback time

One thing about life nothing comes from nothing, if you do nothing then nothing comes to you and your life is just kinda void. Now I am the kind of guy who thinks you should be a contributor if you are going to be a consumer of life, and the  last snow fall found me basically snowbound. But some neighbors came by with tractors and helped me get to the road, allowing us to get to the store, work and such, and just yesterday I was able to get the drive cleared to the asphalt by a co. out of Laurel. Now my neighbors would not take a dime and I know they worked all day helping people get out with their equipment. So now it is payback time for me. I think that that today I will get some ribs, from Sams Club and do a few racks for those neighbors who helped me out. I will show you how I do them and the smoker I am using. Now I know that most everyone but Osama Bin Noddin, likes a pork rib and I can't think of a better way for me to repay my neighbors for their help.

Ice Out Chain Pickerel

this is what I am talking about! It won't be long now before we can get out and wet a line.

Ice Out Chain Pickerel

Since we have been talking about Pickerel fishing I thought this might be cool. Of course this is my first attempt so have faith! Also it won't be long before we can go fishing!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

UmmmUmmmm Good

Here are some picture of the briskets I cooked during the snow storm. They were cooked over competition style briquettes and hickory logs which worked okay. I think I am going back to my cowboy charcoal though as the heat is much more constant. Of course having a blowing snow storm doesn't help much! When we enter these into competition there are a couple of points I look for when I am selecting my entry, First I will cook 4 of these just to get the one I think is perfect. I am looking for a nice pink ring around the edge of the meat. We call it the "rind" or the Smoke ring, and one that is tender to the pull not tough and hard to pull apart. I slice them about 1/4-3/8 thick and try and pull it in half. It should offer some resistance but not much and still hold it's shape and not crumble apart I assure you these were tasty and finished right on the money. For my sauce I live by the tried and true if someone does it better and cheaper let em do it! And Sweet baby Rays original is the sauce I prefer with my brisket sandwich. Before I turn in the entry though I like to shine em up a bit with a thin honey glaze, makes them look so good and the touch of sweetness kicks up the smokey flavor. Try a brisket and enjoy!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Eating that Brisket!

The Briskets came out killer and I got to tell you my wife and I have had them two nights now for dinner, so the now I have put one of them in the freezer for a little later of course. Now I am going to tell you something here if you like BBQ and you like a good beer then you got to try a smoked brisket sandwich with a growler of Evolution Brewing's Lucky 7. It is a thick dark beer with a hint of smokey/coffee flavor to me, that just goes excellent with the smokey brisket. Later this evening I will be posting a picture of these two together as I just got to have another of those sandwiches and a ice cold beer.

Trying out that new snow camo.

Okay like many of you, except for those of you following from the US territory of Guam, I have just gotten out from the latest snow storm storm unscathed sorta. I still don't have a snow shovel, but I did get 100 lbs of rock salt for my drive. Understand that the drive is just a 8 inch sheet of ice/snow pack like my own mini Ice Road Truckers thing, so salt is really not going to do much for me but I feel better trying.
I can finally get to a place I have been wanting to hit to see if I could call in a fox, and my snow camo is going to be the ticket for damn sure. Maybe I will be able to get him on camera if he comes in close enough. If you have been able to get yourself a set of coveralls, or a really huge t shirt and turn them into camo, I think you will be surprised with the results.
I will be trying a combination of electronic and mouth calls to get the fox to respond and to come in to me. I have learned a few things when looking for foxes, and most predators is that they will follow an edge. Very rarely will they cross a wide open space like a been field that has been cut close, or a corn field that has been mowed off. Now a corn field with tall stubble is ideal, and they will take advantage of the rows to get from one place or another. With the snow on the ground, you can see exactly where they are moving and the first two hours of light is the very best time to spot em, with the last couple hours of daylight a second choice for me. By using my snow camo I  can set up in a position that will allow me to observe the track in question, while staying well hidden. Hopefully tonight or tomorrow morning I will be able to give the suit another test and see if I really can get a fox close enough to get his picture.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Pickerel fish comming

Here on the shore we don't have the northern pike but we do have the chain pickerel a close cousin to the Pike if you will. And as soon as the ice breaks up in the headwaters of the many mill ponds we have around here they will be ready to eat and to get their groove on slaying a variety of baits offered to them. I like to canoe to the back of the pond and cast to the structure you are looking for, stump rows or old weed lines, a quick change in depth can be structure. I also like to troll for em dragging a J9 broken back Rapella in black and silver. Shallow water and a dark muddy bottom will warm up quicker and bait fish will move into these areas during the day to soak up some heat and look for food. Naturally our Pickerel fish will be waiting for them to make a slow move or any opportunity to scarf a quick meal. Now many will claim that this fish is just to bony to mess with but I assure you that the fish is a good eating fish and when cooked as a shore lunch make excellent fare. Now if you eat the fish from a freshwater pond here understand that many chicken farms and failing septic systems make their way into them so beware if you eat em.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Smoking a Beef Brisket

There are a few things everyone should know how to do in my opinion. Be able to build a suitable fire, make a decent shelter, shoot straight and enjoy a good bourbon. But also you should know how to cook a beef brisket in your smoker. Today being on lock down I decided that to keep myself from going completely nuts by smoking a beef brisket in my Oklahoma Joe smoker. So I get the smoker out and in place in my shed out back, open all the windows, and doors and light her up with some charcoal and a nice piece of hickory, to make some quick heat. Now temp is the most important thing in a cooking a brisket, you want to cook it low and slow until it reaches 190 internal. Now 190 is a critical temp for your brisket, more than that and it crumbles, under that and it is tough to pull apart. I keep my smoker at 220-250 and for a large brisket or a couple of em you are talking a good 9-12 hours of slow cooking. I like to use lump cowboy charcoal it burns hot and clean, however Kingford has come out with a competition briquette that is a hot long burning fuel also, that I am using today in my smoker. So I get the smoker holding around 120 today and put in my two briskets, knowing that I will be enjoying a bit of bbq in this raging snow storm later today. A fist sized piece of hickory off to the side to make a light smoke and I am on my way.
Now let's talk meat. A brisket is one tough piece of meat for the novice BBQ, and I have to admit I have cooked a ton of em and my first ones were terrible, but now I usually wind up having a tasty piece of Q. First I go to my local meat market and look for a brisket that has a nice fat cap and is the size I need for my needs. Your meat should be well marbled and you should be able to fold it like a wallet, with min resistance, When I am in Sam's club people look at me like I am crazy folding briskets and looking thru the whole pile. But I am looking for one with just the right amt. of fat and uniform in thickness. A brisket 3 inches thick on one end and 1 1/2 on the other is not going to cook in the smoker  uniformly. I take that bad boy home and place it in the freezer for a good 40 min. Then taking a sharp knife I trim off the excess fat so my cap is a uniform 1/4 inch. If necessary I may have to place fat that I cut off in areas of my brisket top and place it in areas that had no fat, your heart doctor is buying a new boat at this point. I take and rub my seasoning all over my meat making sure I get it under any fat I have placed. I like a Taco seasoning packet, it has everything I want right in it and is cheap to buy. I now wrap my briskets and place them in the refrigerator over night. Now with all the salty spices your briskets will weep and run juice all over your wife will not be happy I speak from experience here, put them in a foil pan! In the morning set your briskets on the counter, light your smoker and while it is getting right let your meat set to room temp. Place your briskets in the coolest part of your smoker, and keep the temp between 220 and 250 degrees until the magic temp of 190 is reached. Now when I am cooking in competition I will place my finished briskets in the ice chest wrapped in a thermal bag to let them cool slowly and to set the meat. Slice this meat across the grain about 3/8 inch thick, place it on a good kaiser roll, with just a dollop of slaw and some Sweet bay Rays original BBQ sauce. I guarantee that you will like this meat and your friends will love your efforts once you get the hang of cooking Brisket.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

More Second Amendement

I just read in the Feburary issue of "Outdoor Life' that Wisconsin is considering a Microstamp on all new semi-automatic handguns sold or produced in that state. basicly when you fire the round it is stamped with a identifying code on the shell casing.  Any wepon manfactured after Jan. 1, 2011 would be required to have the stamping code. Of course only those who already follow the law will have the legal guns, and of course those that will steal them from the legal owner.
You have to check out notwithoutafight.net Max Lemus's receantly released video. A real good vid. and will make you appreciate what you have and could lose
The city of Cleveland tried to buck the Second Amendement with it's own municipal gun ban, which has been successfully challenged nation wide. Now it gets better Cleveland says it should be able to BAN "assault wepons. prohibit open carry, maintain a gun registration scheme and pass any gun ordance it would like"!! Yea they may never take our guns but they can sure make it difficult to keep em. Support your NRA, join today

New puppy

Whoooo that puppy is growing like a weed and chewing up more than it's share of shoes and such, those old dock siders will keep him busy during all this snow while you are at work. Your wife's favorite bathroom slippers are next in line and he just can't get enough of those old work boots chewing them up and running round the house with them in his teeth. You shout at him and give chase and he runs from you, causing you to break your big toe on the end table. Falling to the floor the pup thinks it is time to play with you thrashing and howling in pain,  jumping on your belly and licking your face. He will out grow it, this phase of chewing everything in sight but if you want to correct it you have to start before he chews up those $200.00 waders. The scene described above is just a little funny no doubt, but very true. If your dog thinks that you are playing the give me the slippers game as you chase it around the house you don't stand a chance. The very first time you catch the dog chewing you must in a very stern voice tell it "NO, BAD DOG" and replace the shoe with something it can chew, like a rawhide bone. Repeat this until your dog catches on that chewing anything other than it's dinner or that toy, you are going to be be asserting yourself as the Alpha dog, with stern voice sounds, like growling to the dog. Tower over your dog and also take a very dominating stance and body language position. Your dog will learn this in three times if you establish yourself as the Alpha and take possession of the footwear, replacing it with something positive, the rawhide bone. Your dog has learned three  things, Not to chew anything but HIS toy,  NO BAD DOG, and that you are the alpha member of this pack, your family, which to him is his pack. So go get him some chew toys so he will lose those puppy teeth, and leave your waders alone.

Scopes and optics in general

Okay you are working and saving some hustle money so you are ready to get some new glass for the top of your hunting rifle. Now one thing for sure when it comes to the average guy trying to get or upgrade a scope, you should always have a plan and a budget. Let's look at your plan. What is it you expect the scope to do for you, and what are you using it for? First a 22 rifle is only effective in the hands of the average person out to 100 yds. max. So the optics you get should fall into that range most effectively. One of my friends has a 22 with this huge long range scope, that I admit you can dial it down to determine the sex of a fly at 100yds. but when we hunt squirrels in the woods, my 1 inch smokes him. The reason being in my opinion is that he is shooting out of the effective range of his gun. 150 yds is not a good thing when your bullet will only get out to 100yds effectively and accurately. All my shots are in the 25/75 yds. range and the bullet is dropping at 75 but hold to the top of his head and you are dead on, on his chin at 25 yds makes him dinner!
Let's talk cost for a min. this is the budget part for most of us, how much to spend? Well using the above as a start, I personally think that buy buying the best you can afford is the only way to do it. I know you have that new Remington model 700, sitting in the safe while you try and find the cash to get the scope. Because if you are like most of us just walking in and laying out the plastic is just not happening. Looking thru the Cabellas shooting catalog, you see prices from $150-$1,500 for a scope, more than a few manufactures, and a huge selection. One thing that did catch my eye was the Cabellas guide series of scopes, and if you are talking quality I would think that it would be top of the line to carry the Cabellas name, just  a thought there. Now here is the hard part holding out until you get the cash to buy what you want. You get that first $100.00 and set it aside and if you are like me, something comes along to nibble at that bill, I mean fishing is coming up right, and hunting season is a ways off. Then you get another influx from a side job and now you have enough to get some glass on it, you are dying to shoot it. Not what you wanted but at least it is something to get out with it. But you know that you will not be happy, that scope will never perform for you like you wanted it to and you will have a first class gun and  second class piece of glass on top of it.
So to avoid all that keep to your plan and work on the budget, buy the best you can afford and not more than the gun will deliver, you will be happier for it.

Snow camo

Okay I finally got this to post here is what I started with a large pair of white coveralls. Then I painted them with Acrylics that I had from my paintings. I would not wash them in the washer but what the heck.and the back of the coveralls, I used them once like I said earlier. They get wet and they get heavy I am sure. I am not sure of how well they will hold up paint wise. Give it a try.

snow camo

Okay I am bored and can't get out much but I did take a few min to put together this snow camo I saw in one of my hunting mags. Very easy and cheap one of my key words for hunting stuff I make myself. First I took a old pair of stark white coveralls I picked up and my wife gave them a double washing in some bleach water to brighten them up some as they were pretty soiled. Laying them out in the floor I took some black paint and proceeded to paint a tree on them running up one leg and across the chest area, I highlighted it with some white paint and a few brown splotches to help it fade in, background is very important. A little touch of blue to the white makes it even more appealing and helps to blend in really well. I wore it once last week when I went out calling foxes and had two on top of me  until they caught my scent, making me confident of the work. Take a look at my pictures and try making your own snow camo, I have heard that some guys will use a huge t shirt for their cover and a broad tipped marker. Whatever you use as your starting point keep in mind that anything you make yourself and use successfully will add greatly to the overall pleasure you get from your hunting and scouting.

More bad weather?

Okay for most of us enough is enough!!Here at the ranch we had a good 20 inches with some 30 inch drifts coming across the open fields. Drifting is a problem because of the wide open spaces around the ranch, and it was not till yesterday I was even able to make it to the road. So after shoveling and brushing I was able to get out yesterday for a few min. But I will tell ya that three days in the cabin has given me a new perspective on getting out amongst em! What is a man to do? I read the "Last of the Mohicans"  painted a couple of paintings, cooked and generally just got on my wife's nerves. And shoveled out the cars. No government subsidies needed here, no spending just neighbors being neighbors. My neighbor came down and managed to help pack the drive with his tractor, and push some snow around with the blade. And by keeping at it in small pieces I got the cars dug out. Today the  went wife to work as she works on major highways, but the back roads are a mess some not even seeing any kind of plow, with the only access to major highways being cleared by locals with a tractor or front end loader.
So what is in store for us next? Another couple of inches of the white stuff with some freezing rain mixed in for good measure is in the forecast. Oh well I guess I will just have to stock up on more TP, get another loaf of bread and a gallon of milk, just ride it out. But I have a dream that one day little boys and girls, mommies and daddies  will stand next to each other and catch fat fish in the sun. Or so the story should go.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Snow days can mean great days for scouting

The recent snow fall has given me the perfect opportunity to see what critters are going where. I can see the direction very clearly and if the snow is falling how long ago they passed. After the snow storm, critters will be up and moving around and the chance for a stalk hunt with the bow is now presenting it self for the late season. If you like to hunt sheds then you get a opportunity to follow deer trails and see fresh rubbings as the deer get ready to knock off their horns. Also keep in mind if you are a shed hunter that some chain link fence wrapped around the tree will make finding them real easy and give the deer a excellent spot to rub those horns off, often finding them caught in the fence material. Also it is easy to see in the evening as foxes and coyote begin to move about looking for an easy meal and the chance of spotting them increases. Later tonight I will be posting an article on making a snow camo suit to get out amongst em. Super easy, very efficient, and keeps you out of trouble.....right

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

DE right to carry process

I went today to  a gun shop in Laurel that offers CWP permits for $125.00 Bottom line is this two evening classes and 100 rounds at the range gets you a concealed carry permit. No huge paperwork hassle no background check, nothing to buy just bring your own handgun for the range portion.

Monday, February 1, 2010

just too funny not to tell

Not to long ago Billy Max 4 was hunting waterfowl with some friends and had come up to stay at the ranch with the wife and I. Now for Christmas my daughter in law had given me some sugar free gummy bears, that I had setting in my man cave to munch on occasionally. Knowing the laxative effects that sugar free candy can have, I always be careful how much of this confection I consume, especially when I am chest deep in my waders! Max 4 and I were in my cave when he spied the gummy bears sitting on a shelf. Now this man is very particular about his gummy snacks, clear ones are fine orange and white are okay but never red and green or some such shit. So he opens the bag and starts to consume way to many of the bears to be safe in the morning I tell ya. So watching I suggest we go down and get a cheese steak/Blue Moon and play some KENO at the local pizza place. Couple of Blue Moons and 5 games of KENO later we are out the door and heading for home, assembling gear for the morning hunt, it has not yet begun to snow. Now if it is one thing I am it is quiet when I go hunting, so I told Max 4 that he had best be quiet in the morning, and not wake me up as I was not going to go in the snow and blow. At 4:15 AM I am awaken by what can only be described as a space shuttle taking off in my bathroom. Then we had main engine ignition and I thought the roof was coming off the place. I was awake naturally and just about to get up and see if he wanted me to fix some ham biscuits and coffee, when I heard the sound of running feet and another booster rocket was launched from my john. Thank god he turned on the fan and did not light a match as the results would have been disastrous! Finally I hear him get out the door and the truck start up and I knew he was off for the day goose hunting. Now I have to say that in all the years I have known this man him and a bear do not have one thing in common, he cannot use the bathroom in the woods, but today would be special. While putting out decoys he was struck with what can only be described as labor pains, and sharp pains going down his inside thighs to his feet. Stopping so as not to soil his pants he waddled back and got another decoy or two and tried to set them up only to be stopped by what can best be described as the birthing process it self. Noticing a tree line 200 yds distant he decided that maybe now was the time to break the no bathroom in the woods thing and start to work his way over there. He arrived in just the nick of time finding a suitable tree and fighting to remove his waders and long johns, he managed to just get settled in when he gave birth to what can only be described as a mess. Of course his colon cornet was trumpeting and he was having sighs of relief that were heard back at the blind. Clean up was no picnic and he was getting snowed on and such at about this time, so his waders were pleasant. Waddling back to the blind the guys had some Vienna sausages on the grill and a bag of powdered doughnuts, soon a can of smoked oysters were brought out but he did not have much appetite. All in all a good hunt I guess they only got one goose, and it snowed hard as the dickens, but another story to share in the blind was born. 

NRA-ILA :: Right-to-Carry 2009

NRA-ILA :: Right-to-Carry 2009