The next great backcountry bow….
Archive for January, 2012
A big congrats to my boy, Matt Alwine, on his Idaho lion! Despite warm temperatures and very little fresh snow, the crew managed to get the job done on a great cat. Even with Matt’s ugly mug in it…the photo below is about as good as it gets when it comes to good times in cat country.
Also, be sure to catch Matt’s show, Trophy State of Mind, on the Sportsman Channel at 5:30pm on Wednesdays and 12:30pm Saturdays (Eastern Time).
This week’s HeartShots devo “Slippery Places” is now live!
Check it out by clicking on the HeartShots page or the link: http://realitybowhunting.com/heartshots
Several times over the past season I’ve left the house or truck without the proper base for my tripod or treearm. This typically has put me out of the game when it comes to videoing for that particular hunt. However, my buddy, Jeff Umland, shares what to do when you’re in a pinch…forgot your tripod mount…and need to make something work. He recently used a surgical glove to keep his pocket camera in place on the treearm! These gloves have a multitude of varying uses, but I honestly never thought about anchoring a video camera with one. Classic!
Grunting and squealing, growling and screaming, America’s best elk callers are headed to Las Vegas to vie for a world title.
The 2012 RMEF/Leupold World Elk Calling Championships will be held as part of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF) convention and International Sportsmen’s Exposition, Feb. 2-4, at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
The raucous event is open to the public.
Elk are the most vocal species of North American deer. The signature call is a “bugle,” a loud, high-pitched whistle or scream used during mating season by bulls trying to attract cows and advertise their dominance to other bulls. Bulls also grunt at cows straying from their harem. Cows bark to warn of danger, mew to keep track of each other and whine to signal distress. Calves bleat when they are lost. Mimicking these sounds has been a competitive sport for almost 25 years, but 2012 will be the RMEF/Leupold World Elk Calling Championships’ first time in Las Vegas.
I was out the other morning trying to punch one last doe tag before the season wrapped up. As I thought back over the season, I found myself a bit disgruntled that I hadn’t had a coyote or fox in bow range all season. A short time later I caught movement a couple hundred yards up the river bottom. A quick look through the binoculars revealed a big fox that was chompin’ on a fresh kill. I scrambled to dig the Primos Lil Dog predator call from my pack before the fox moved on. The fox had disappeared from sight by the time I got the call from my pack. I knew he couldn’t have gone far so I squealed a short series on the call. Within three seconds the fox charged in under my stand. I did my best to free my hands from the binocs and call but the fox caught my movement. He stood around long enough for me to flip the camera on but busted out of bow range as I grabbed my bow and eased around to draw. Close…just not close enough.
The Innovation Zone at the ATA show is a great place to find some pretty cool gear as it highlights many of the newest companies in the industry as they debut their new products for the year.
Here’s a few companies that have some slick products for 2012…
Camo FX from GameFace, Inc. allows hunters the opportunity to utilize a quality face paint to blot out the shine of exposed skin in the woods. Unlike most camo face paints, Camo FX offers easy on…easy off use for quick and clean application and removal. Check them out at http://camofxnation.com
Bill and Pennie Montgomery of Quick Draw Bowfishing continue to grow their new company with one of the best bowfishing rests on the market. For 2012 they offer their popular bowfishing rest in a pink finish, appealing to the ever-growing group of ladies getting into the sport of bowfishing. Check out more on Quick Draw Bowfishing at http://quickdrawoutdoorgear.com
After a frustrating few weeks with very little snow we finally got a tiny bit on Tuesday night. I gave big Dave Oligee a call and we made plans to ditch work and try to find some tracks in the morning.
We were out several hours before light driving the mountain roads in search of tracks. By daylight we had covered two different drainages and had seen only bobcat and coyote tracks. There was under an inch of fresh snow, but on the untraveled roads tracks showed up easily.
Just after light a track was found heading into some private ground we had permission on! My heatbeat picked up a bit realizing I would at least have a chance to chase a cat today.
As the dogs were turned loose on the track I followed the tracks and Dave and Randy(the dog handler) headed around the drainage to listen to the dogs progress. About a half mile in the dogs got a bit turned around and Big Dave picked up the tracks and continued on. I caught up and we followed the tracks into some cliffs waiting for the dogs to catch up. As I entered a near vertical cliff the cat circled right and I followed. The cat made a hundred yard circle and pretty soon I was back at my own tracks with smokin’ fresh kitty tracks doubling back right on my tracks! About this time the dogs showed up and we got ‘em turned on the right set of tracks. It was only minutes later we heard Red and Sally barkin treed! I pretty much ran to the tree to see a pretty tom staring back with those cold eyes. After 5 weeks of waiting, my chance was here. We took a bunch of pics and found a shootin’ hole. The shooting wasn’t easy as the cat was 30 feet up the tree and quartering away.
The last thing I remember hearing was Dave saying hit him up front as cats vitals are far forward. With this cue I proceeded to draw back my Centaur longbow and drive a Big Simmons Tree Shark into the cats hip! Crap! At the hit the cat started descending the tree and I kept shooting as fast as only an instinctive archer can go. My next shot went through his belly and up into orbit and he kept coming down. As he rounded the tree jumpin from limb to limb he must have finally got into my range cause I hammered him right in the neck with a frontal shot as he paused momentarily. He bailed off the tree and was dead in seconds as the Treeshark left a gaping wound through his jugular. It was an amazing hunt to have with an amazing friend. By coincidence we ended up only a quarter mile above Daves shop when we killed the cat. We were also right above the field where my horse had been attacked by a cat this summer. Redemption!
The guys at Hunter Safety System (HSS) once again showed out this year with several new products that continue to build on their very impressive line. For 2012 the new HSS Hybrid harness is lightweight and functional. The Hybrid features the best of both worlds…a lightweight, fully functional harness, yet also features six pockets to keep gear close by, as well as to keep your hands warm on chilly mornings in the stand.
Also from HSS is the addition of their new Lifeline Plus. Whether you’re climbing into the treestand with a child, buddy, or cameraman in tow, the new Lifeline Plus allows two hunters to be safely harnessed from the time they leave the ground until they get back down again.
See all the latest from Hunter Safety System at http://huntersafetysystem.com
Day 2 of the ATA show in Columbus brought another round of great gear for archers and bowhunters. One very cool tool that I’ve often wished for while climbing around in the mountains with my bow is the new Armour Dillo 360 Cam Protector from He Dog Archery. This cam protector device keeps your bottom cam and string from being bumped, dinged, or frayed. Whether you drop your bow, or use it as a crutch, your cam stays protected. Check it out at http://hedogarchery.com
Soctt Archery has several new releases for 2012 with their new Wolverine and Wolf and their new additions for the ladies, including the new Fox and Cougar releases.
See them at http://scottarchery.com
X-1 Treestands from X-Stand offers a revolutionary concept in treestand design. The X-1 is the lightest weight climbing treestand on the market. With its flexible arms that flex inwards as the cable clinches to firmly girp the tree and outwards to open the cable for easy climbing. See it at http://x-stand.com
As always, Bohning Archery started the new year with an assortment of new products. I particularly like the new wraps that are now available for 2012. See all the latest at http://bohning.com
Check back here often to see more from this year’s show in the next couple days, including a look at the Innovation Zone, featuring lots of new companies with their debut products.