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Barnyard Bucks

Bucks that live to see four years of age or more have plenty of hiding spots, and chances are there’s a barnyard among them.
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Review: Colt M2012

Shooting Editor John B. Snow puts this beefy, but elegant, precision bolt gun to the test.
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Train for the West

These six cornerstones are the keys to preparing for a backcountry western hunt. Here's what you need, from guns, to gear, to conditioning.
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Wyo. Cast and Blast

Wyoming boasts the largest and most widespread populations of sage grouse. So break a sweat hunting them in the morning and cool off in the river after lunch by fishing for monster trout.
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May 9, 2008

Top Picks

  • If elk are left undisturbed, they can be patterned, and that’s how you find them—even from thousands of miles away.

  • Learn how to make fire in a can and 50 other essential skills, inspired projects, and clever hacks to improve your outdoor life.

  • We had a small field in our annual shotguns test, but it was full of some stellar models. See which gun took home top honors.

  • From trends and innovations to real-life performance, here's what we learned about the best new rifles after our annual gun test.

  • May 17, 2010

    Gold-plated AK-47 (And Other Examples of Bespoke Taste in Narco-Guns) - 7

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    Actually, the very shiny gun here is an AKS-74U, from what I can tell—though slightly modified from the original design that was supposed to propel the people’s revolution to global victory during the Cold War.

    My favorite touch is the jewelling on the bolt carrier. It’s as if whatever poor gunsmith was tasked with creating this monstrosity were actually interested in trying to make something beautiful for Tony Montana Jr., or whoever it was who commissioned the work. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 17, 2010

    Poacher Robs Hunter Of Record-Book Buck - 26

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    Just about anyone who has climbed into a fall treestand has imagined what it would be like to encounter a top-heavy trophy buck of a lifetime. In most cases, late night dreams and daytime fantasies are about as close as most hunters ever come to tagging a record book buck. However, Ohio bowhunter Ian Obenshain came dangerously close to harvesting what would have been the largest typical buck of the 2009 season. Unfortunately, a poacher robbed Obenshain of his chance to shoot the giant 16-point buck that he had been scouting throughout the pre-season in nearby Adams County. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 16, 2010

    BP: Clean Up Your Damn Mess - 5


    My two weeks on the ground in Louisiana have been a complete learning experience. Not only have I learned more about the Machiveallen machinations of large corporate America, but also of the media and the spin our country has adopted as truth. Ultimately the nation’s learning experience from the BP/Halliburton/TransOcean Oil Spill will never result in changes or answers, but more reasons to lessen corporate governmental oversight on large industry. How as an individual am I to balance a healthy belief in a free market economy based on the oil industry as the driving factor behind our financial success with the atrocities and finger-pointing the entities responsible for the mess are trying to shoulder off on the other?  I didn’t think I could, but a Republican senator from Alaska may have changed my mind.

    [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 16, 2010

    Hello Gun Nuts! - 52

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    Conservative commentator Glenn Beck and former U.S. Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich wowed the audience with their keynote addresses at the National Rifle Association annual convention in Charlotte, North Carolina.

    Here are some highlights: [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 15, 2010

    How Much Can We Take? - 3

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    Jon and I got our first day off today. After a long string of sleepless nights culling through photos, editing video, and trying to write everything down, we were able to get about five hours of sleep before the phone calls and requests for our time started pouring in around nine. I think Jon and I would both be remiss if we didn’t say this has been a life-changing experience. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 15, 2010

    Palin: Obama Would Gut Gun Rights - 55

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    From The Bellingham Herald

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. A spirited and self-deprecating Sarah Palin fired up 9,000 members of the National Rifle Association in Charlotte on Friday, bashing Hollywood, the media and animal-rights groups while warning that President Barack Obama would "gut" the Second Amendment. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 14, 2010

    The Woods Power Nap - 13

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    Want to increase your late-season longevity, kill gobblers with patience, and live longer? Sure you do. Take a regular woods nap while you’re sitting at the base of a broad-trunked tree waiting for a cement-footed longbeard to arrive.

    Countless studies have demonstrated that napping will increase your cognitive abilities (to think better while hatching gobbler-killing tactics too, no doubt), and obviously refresh you after a season of early-morning risings.

    Ever drop a gobbler using a nap to bide your time? Me too. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 13, 2010

    The Democratic Deer - 14

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    Earlier I told you I dismissed whitetails as ordinary.

    That perspective is rooted in my background. Growing up as a Missouri farm boy whitetails were commonplace, and many of my neighbors considered them crop-eating nuisances, not trophy game animals.

    But then I moved to Montana’s Milk River Valley, and got serious about hunting whitetails. And my life—and perspective—changed completely. Whitetails may be everywhere, but their very abundance makes the pursuit of an individual an even greater challenge. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 13, 2010

    Who Cares About Whitetails? - 14

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    Hello. My name is Andrew McKean and I’m a recovering whitetail skeptic.

    Maybe I should explain myself. I’m here to tell you that big bucks turn my crank. And I hope you become a Record Quest groupie who circles back to this site early and often.

    But I wouldn’t be honest with either of us if I told you that white-tailed deer rule my life. In fact, for much of the last decade I gave whitetails about as much attention as that chronic rattle under the dashboard of my pickup. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 13, 2010

    Upping the Wolf Ante - 5

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    Draft plans for this fall’s wolf hunts in both Idaho and Montana call for significantly higher harvest quotas and—in Idaho, at least—the use of bait and traps to help put the brakes on rapidly expanding predator populations.

    The draft rules would more than triple the harvest quota from Montana’s inaugural hunt last fall. In Idaho, the harvest goal might be double last year’s quota of 220, though specific numbers won’t be available until the state’s wildlife commission meets in August. But game managers have signaled that new rules will allow trapping, baiting and the use of electronic calls. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 13, 2010

    Online Photos Lead to Poaching Convictions - 11

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    Here at the Outdoor Life Newshound, we’ve written it before we’ll probably (unfortunately) write it again: Poachers and game-law violators are not the sharpest tools in the shed.

    Our most recent example of this premise is Paul Harvey III of Grants Pass, Ore., who was sentenced late in April after pleading guilty to felony unlawful possession of game animals and misdemeanor unlawful alteration of a hunting license. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 12, 2010

    Holy Crap! - 10

    It was 4:30 a.m. and Kona was whining. "Shut up," I said and rolled over in bed. It continued even as he moved into the living room. After a few minutes I got up to see what was going on.

    I found my black Lab sitting alertly next to a pile of liquid poo deposited on my apartment's carpet. Kona looked at me as if to say "this is what's wrong, you moron!" I quickly took him outside where he blew contents from his backend all over the communal compound. After painting small grass patches with poo (and cleaning it up as best as possible), I went back inside to address the mess on the carpet and return to my bed.

    Little did I know that when I'd get up a couple of hours later, my good-morning greeting would include several more crap-splatterings pasted across the carpet (none on the linoleum, mind you). What became scary is that as Kona's episode of diarrhea continued, the contents of his deposits moved from liquid stool matter to spraying blood. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 12, 2010

    More Gulf Closures - 4

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    SPECIAL REPORT: Recreational fishing has now been closed in some inshore west of the Mississippi River, expanding the closures in reaction to the westward movement of oil from the wrecked Deepwater Horizon rig.

    Inshore waters west of the river now closed are:

    • Inshore waters north of the inside/outside shrimp line from the eastern shore of the Empire Canal at 89 degrees 36 minutes 19.9 seconds west longitude eastward to the Mississippi River.

    • Inshore waters south of 29 degrees 13 minutes 12 seconds north latitude from the western shore of Bayou Lafourche westward to the western shore of Oyster Bayou at 91 degrees 07 minutes 53 seconds west longitude.

    This closure includes all of the inshore waters southeast of Empire, along with the southern half of Timbalier and Terrebonne bays. [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 11, 2010

    Guns Stolen? Never Give Up! - 8

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    Though it can be devastating for many gun owners, somewhere or sometime over the course of their lives, one or more of their cherished guns may be tragically lost in a home burglary or theft.

    The story of the successful recovery of a firearm taken during a 1970 burglary and returned to an Oregon man this week conveys a valuable lesson to those who have been victimized by gun theft: don’t give up and remain vigilant! [ Read Full Post ]

  • May 11, 2010

    Gayne Visits T.R.’s Favorite Watering Hole - 12

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    Not many bars can claim to have had a future President of the United States shoot the place up, but that’s exactly what Theodore Roosevelt did at the Menger Bar in 1898.

    T.R. was no stranger to Sana Antonio’s most famous hotel bar.  He first visited it following a javelina hunt in 1892.  Sitting next-door to the Alamo, the hotel bar had long been a fixture of San Antonio’s permanent and visiting elite and catered to an eclectic mix of cowboys and wealthy socialites.  The bar cost an astronomical $60,000 upon its construction in 1887 and was well world renown for having cold beer chilled on ice imported from northern states via gulf steamers. [ Read Full Post ]