May 9, 2008
If you've ever felt that your voice can't be heard, you might want to tune in to the battle raging over angler access on the Cumberland River. And be ready to click that "like" button.
If you'll recall an Open Country post in December of 2012 revealed that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers intends to close tailrace areas below dams on the Cumberland River to fishing. Its reasoning? "Public Safety." That’s a curious citation given that there have been just eight boating-related deaths below Tennessee Corps projects since 1978 and only about two percent of all deaths on the river system occurred below dams. [ Read Full Post ]
That’s Joel Rotz from the Farm Bureau, and next to him is the guy from the Pennsylvania Equine Council,” whispered Monica Kline as we sat in a dimly lit, wood-paneled hearing room in the Pennsylvania State Capitol building in Harrisburg on a drizzly morning late last October.
We were awaiting the start of a public hearing before the state House of Representatives Game and Fisheries Committee, and Kline, a lobbyist for the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance, was identifying for me the gathered opposition to House Bill 1760, which would overturn Pennsylvania’s Sunday hunting ban. “That’s the guy from the Keystone Trails Association, and those women over there are from the Humane Society.”
Among those testifying in support of overturning the ban that day last fall were representatives from the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance, and the Quality Deer Management Association, as well as Pennsylvania Game Commission executive director Carl Roe. [ Read Full Post ]
Not bringing a GPS along when you hunt or fish is kind of like not having toilet paper. Sure, you can do that, but you’re only creating problems for yourself.
While GPS has improved much in recent years, it still has its limits. It's easy to lose a signal in certain areas like mountains with heavy tree cover, at which point you’re blind unless you have some other means to navigate. Then there’s the issue of the vulnerability of the system that depends on satellites (31 of them at last count) that hang in the sky like sitting ducks should someone decide to take them out. This last concern is one that the military has and, should we somehow lose some or all our satellites to an attack, it would have tremendous repercussions around the globe. [ Read Full Post ]
My instinctive reaction to the headlined question is, “No, I don’t believe I want to see a wardrobe-less survivalist trying to do perform survival skills on a deserted island.” The whole thing stinks of gimmicks and exploitation.
Spawning bass are already difficult enough, what with shallow water and their procreation priority making the fish profoundly nervous. But add in the daily depth fluctuations of a tidal habitat and you'll need to factor the area's ebb and flow into your calculations of approach, distance and presentation.
First consider that bass will establish their nests in spots that retain sufficient depth through mean low tide, so note the low-water marks on shoreline wood, rip rap, docks and seawalls. In the sprawling California Delta, vast stands of tules (tall, wispy vegetation) provides much of the spawning habitat, so anglers note the mud line on stalks as a depth gauge. [ Read Full Post ]
We have been planting food plots for almost 25 years and have learned a thing or two about what works with whitetails and what doesn’t. And, when it comes to planting food plots you can’t beat clover.
Clover is relatively easy to grow, is loaded with nutrition, and whitetails simply love it. A good clover plot will produce 2 to 4 tons (per acre) of easily digestible plant matter and give your whitetails a shot in the arm when it comes to nutrition. [ Read Full Post ]
Officials in both New York and Maine have issued alerts asking spring turkey hunters to help them identify birds that may be suffering from Lymphoproliferative Disease Virus (LPDV). The virus, which causes Elephant Man-like lesions on a turkey’s head and legs, has already been found in the Maine population while biologists in New York are seeking further information to determine whether the disease has impacted their flock. [ Read Full Post ]
We all love our knives. Each of us owns several of them for various purposes and they’re the most indispensable tools that we carry. So the idea of making blades from stone may seem primitive and even backward. But what happens if you get caught without a knife? Or you need to do some butchering work and want to keep clean the only knife you have on you? Sharp stone blades can fill in for your favorite knife, and the best part is that they are easy to make. [ Read Full Post ]
A West Virginia 8th grader was arrested on April 18 for obstruction and "disturbing the education process" after he engaged in a heated exchange with a teacher and refused to remove his NRA T-shirt.
Jared Marcum, 14, of Logan told the Associated Press on April 19th that he was on a cafeteria line when a teacher demanded that he remove his NRA T-shirt or wear it inside-out because it featured a gun, which the teacher insisted violated the middle-school's dress policy.
Marcum refused, stating it was his First Amendment right to voice his support for the Second Amendment by wearing a T-shirt with an image of a gun and the words ”Protect Your Right” on it. [ Read Full Post ]
Luke Tonlino of Otis, Massachusetts was admittedly a bit peeved. Upon hearing some odd banging sounds coming from outside his home last week, Tonlino decided to investigate. That’s when he spotted the source of the commotion—an adult gobbler. Apparently enamored with his own reflection in the bumper of Tonlino’s truck, the bird strutted back and forth occasionally pecking at the high-polished chrome.
“I went inside for the camera and watched him for 5 minutes,” Tonlino said. “He saw me and didn’t care—until I ran him off. I was afraid he would ruin the bumper.” [ Read Full Post ]
With overwhelming support from most of the state’s sportsmen, the New York Department of Environmental Conservation held the state’s first youth deer hunt last fall. The results are in and the three-day Columbus Day weekend hunt was a great success. The DEC estimates that 7,800 junior hunters (along with non-hunting mentors) took 1,411 whitetail deer. [ Read Full Post ]
As rivers, streams, and creeks across the country begin to flood, we’re reminded that spring rains bring muddy water, which decreases visibility and makes bass fishing even more challenging. Turbid inflows prove particularly disruptive in lakes where fish are spawning, as the dirty—and typically colder—water will push fish off their beds.
Past the bedding season, murky water in any scenario demands attention and adjustment from anglers hoping to fool bass with artificials. It’s all about increasing the fish’s ability to detect your bait. [ Read Full Post ]
The maddening itch of poison ivy is something that most outdoor lovers know all too well. Poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac are all capable of torturing us at some point during the course of the year. But the shiny, oily springtime leaves of poison ivy seem to be the worst of the bunch. [ Read Full Post ]
When the stars align and the feeding window is open, a big muskie or pike will hit anything that moves. Your bait selection doesn’t matter and all you have to do is be in the right place at the right time. If you’re lucky, you’ll experience this feeding-frenzy action once or twice a season. The rest of your time hunting trophy pike and muskies will be spent cranking, casting, and waiting. The right presentation will make the difference between a bite and a follow-up. So, don’t waste all of your effort pitching second-rate lures. Here’s our round up of the best muskie and pike fishing baits on the market right now. [ Read Full Post ]
Until a few weeks ago, I’d never tried to kill a turkey with an arrow. While bows are permitted during the spring turkey season in my home state of New York, there is no dedicated archery season, so I’ve always just hunted them with a shotgun. When you fire one and a half ounces of number-five lead shot through a tightly constricted turkey choke at a bird’s head/neck area at close range, there is little chance of wounding it. The result will more than likely be either a miss or a very dead turkey.
And then I was invited to try and kill a couple turkeys with a crossbow in Nebraska the last week of March during that state’s archery turkey season. Needless to say, I was intrigued. After all, I do understand the appeal of the challenge of trying to kill a bird with an arrow, and if a state like Nebraska is going to provide an opportunity to hunt turkeys in March (another thing I’d never done) then why not take them up on it? (By the way, if New York tried to implement a three-week bow-only turkey season prior to the firearms season, I’m... [ Read Full Post ]