If you are a hunter, or want to become a hunter you better be ready for those days when things don't go as planned. I am speaking to you this morning (Thursday) with extremely sore legs and a very disappointed heart after shooting and not finding a deer. I headed to the woods on Tuesday morning as the kids and Shelley were just rising out of the sack.
Dear deer, do you know what is about to happen? Of course you do. But how is it that you know that the bullets will start flying in another couple weeks? I know, because your mom and dad taught you, right? Or is it that God has given you senses that are so uncanny that hunters have to use their tricks to fool you? These tricks are many and some of them work some of the time but none work all of the time. In my opinion it all starts with your hunting clothing, get it all washed up nicely with some non-scented detergent and hang those articles on the line for days or even a week.
I like big bucks I cannot lie. Everybody likes big bucks (hunter or non-hunter)! And as we move into the most magical time of the deer season (with the approaching rut), people across the country are going "buck crazy." The clothes will be hanging on the lines, all the deer products will be ransacked from the shelves at your local sporting goods stores and people (like myself) will seem to fall into a semi-daze, just getting all caught up in this sport. Around these parts, good luck shooting one of these big buggers.
Does it make you feel more like a man? That was the question I was asked by a hockey coach that was on his way to do some recruiting of some Canadian players. I had stopped at a gas station up near the border of Minnesota and Canada on our way to Saskatchewan to film a waterfowl show for an episode of Mills Fleet Farms' "We Love It! Outdoors." My answer was, yes. And I let him know that's why they are here, for us to manage and enjoy. I grew up hunting, eating and enjoying everything about ducks and geese. And this was indeed an experience (the hunt) that I will not forget.
We are putting the finishing touches on the Fishing To End Hunger walleye tournament that is set to take place on Saturday (today) on the Gull Lake Chain. It's quite the process to organize such an event and I am thankful that it's not all up to me, because if that were the case it wouldn't be taking place!
It's been a beautiful week in Wisconsin! We have been over here all week filming an episode for "We Love It! Outdoors." The subject matter is the elusive whitetail deer. I'm hunting with Todd Hess, a sporting goods representative from Hudson, Wis., and we are hunting on Todd's in-laws farm in the southwest part of the state. The action has been really good but I have yet to squeeze the trigger on my Excalibur crossbow. This is the first year Wisconsin has allowed crossbows during the archery season for the general public.
I am writing to you on this morning of Sept. 11, 2014. It's a cool, beautiful morning in the Brainerd lakes area but one can only imagine the thoughts and emotions that are running through the heads and hearts of those who were immediately affected by the evil-doers that decided it would be "the thing to do" on that day 13 years ago. Last night was Obama's speech, too, and how coincidental is it that on the eve of 9/11 he gives an address that it's time to go after the "next" terrorist group (no matter where they may be).
We are less than a month away from the second annual Walleyedan's Fishing To End Hunger walleye tournament on the Gull Lake Chain. The year has zoomed by a little too fast, but we are excited to see what this years' tournament has in store. Last year the weather was ugly, this year we just don't know what we'll get for weather, either. But, we do know that the tournament field is filling in very nicely and we were given a permit for 120 boats. This is a tournament that has a lot going for it!
Life - isn't it interesting? I'm not quite sure how to put words to what's going on in this crazy world but it's getting harder and harder to stay "up" on things. I guess it's almost best to not pay so much attention to the negative crap going on and try to focus on the good stuff. The outdoors is where I spend most of my time and I know it's where most of you like to spend your time, too. If you love the outdoors, September is the start of the most awesome season here in Minnesota!
I'm back from a successful Wyoming pronghorn hunt. I sent my last column to the Brainerd Dispatch from my blind (via my iPhone) an hour or so before I harvested a nice pronghorn with my bow and arrow. I shot the buck at about 10:30 a.m. last Friday morning as he was coming to a watering hole. The shot was right on, and the animal hit the ground in less than a minute and expired! That was certainly one of the highlights of our trip but there was so much more that we experienced.