Recap: Mother/Daughter Pronghorn Antelope Bow Hunt

My parents have taken me hunting since I was a kid. We primarily hunted in central Minnesota, but now that I get to travel quite a bit to hunt, I decided to invite my mom to Montana for her first pronghorn hunt. I bought her a new Mathews Bow and Bow Release for Mother’s Day, so she’s been practicing all summer. She’s always been an avid bow hunter, but this was going to be her first trip out of the state with her bow.

I picked her up in Fargo, North Dakota, on my way back from an Ontario black bear hunt and we were headed to Broadus, Montana, to hunt with CJ Gaskill from Powder River Outfitters. Upon arrival, we shot our bows and were pretty excited to get out to the blind and start hunting. We decided that blind hunting would be best because it was more of a controlled situation, but we also wanted to spice it up a bit so I bought a small pronghorn buck decoy along with a bedded doe.

It wasn’t long until the pronghorns started drawing in close to our blind. We were primarily hunting alfalfa fields and used the decoy to bring the bucks in close. But there was a problem: They weren’t close enough! My mom needed the bucks to be inside 30-35 yards and they were consistently staying at 40 yards and beyond. We had plenty of time, so we just waited it out. We sat from dark to dark, day after day, and finally, a buck decided to come in. Once again, it stayed out of range. It was the last day of our trip and my mom had to pass. I reminded her that it’s not over until it’s over, but you could see that she was disappointed. As we sat there, almost 2 hours later, the same buck decided to come back over and check out our decoy one last time. I could hardly believe it, and finally, the buck stepped inside 35 yards—not by much, but just inside our marker, and my mom released her arrow and made a great shot.

recap motherdaughter pronghorn antelope bow hunt

I got the entire thing on film and it was truly one of the most rewarding hunts I’ve ever seen! We really hunted hard, and she stuck it out and made a great shot once the opportunity finally arrived. I was super excited and my mom was nearly speechless.

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A Different Kind of Bull

Today I caught myself thinking about the early days of marriage to my wonderful husband. Let me set the stage briefly. He was full of youthful cowboy dreams with the thirst for adventure mixed with the need for adrenaline. Yes, my husband was a bull rider when we met. I can still smell the arenas and hear the sounds associated with the rodeo scene…. Chaps. Rosin. Bull Ropes. Friends. Dirt. Copenhagen. Boots.

Those days, yet familiar, are but a distant memory and we now find ourselves chasing a different kind of bull across the majestic Rocky Mountain slopes. The bulls that he once found himself on top of, hat pulled down tight and ready for the gate to open upon the words, “let’s go boys” were of a different breed. He was a crazy youthful cowboy seeking to cover the elusive 8 seconds. I find myself wondering though… is it really much different to chase bull elk across the mountains than trying not be bucked off the back of one? Adrenaline is adrenaline after all. (Okay, I’m not about to put this butt on top of a bull in a rodeo arena, just go with it.)

We elk hunters are familiar with the feeling of the little hairs on the back of our necks standing on end when the sound of the Rocky Mountain “ghost” is screaming their presence at close proximity. It is a feeling like no other when the still of the evening is suddenly filled with hoof prints or the one lone bark of an elk announces that you have finally arrived in his backyard.. and he is NOT happy with you being there. Or when everyone suddenly stops in their tracks because you can literally smell them. Yes, smell them. Or there is even the times when you hear someone say, “Don’t move!” What? How close exactly is he and why shouldn’t I move? But you do resist the urge to move knowing that there may be a chance that someone else has a shot.

So, I guess what I’m trying to say is there is plenty of adrenaline to go around come opening day in September when we will be saying, “Let’s go boys! Let’s go!” This time I’m one of the “boys” and will be right by my husband’s side experiencing the thrill of adrenaline on a mountain top. Are you ready for your adrenaline rush?

Let the count down for opening day begin!

The Color Orange

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Orange is my new favorite color, however, I’m not really sure why. I suppose it could be that I miss wearing it during rifle season. My bright orange apparel is now retired to the back of the closet or confined to boxes in the basement. Once I started pulling back on a bowstring, I was freed from having to wear this color.

I love now being able to wear camouflage from head to toe. It always seemed silly to me to pay for camo and then have to cover it up with a bright orange vest / jacket and hat. I do understand the point and agree that it is a true safety thing – unfortunately there are still a lot of crazy hunters out there.

So, I find myself wondering.. why is it when I go shopping, I’m now always drawn to the bright orange colors for my normal wardrobe? I guess I like orange after all. I’m just glad I no longer have to wear it in the woods.

My Ode to Camouflage
On the horizon, there’s a bright orange glow
not from the sun or flower petals, no
Your source is becoming clear to me
sprinkled throughout the valley floor
hunters arrayed in orange with gun in tow
Camouflage from head to toe
I love you so
you hide my frame
while hunting game
I’m no longer seen by friend or foe
Bright orange glow I used to know
now traded for other sites
For archery season is calling me
into the woods with stick and bow
Wait what do I see on arrows end?
Bright orange fletchings in a row
Camouflage from head to toe
I love you so
you hide my frame
Now when taking aim
Orange fills the sky from fletchings glow

The Unofficial Deer Buffet

Why is it that you can spend an entire morning or evening in the woods hunting for deer and not see anything, but come spring time they all come out of hiding and appear in my garden??? I’m pretty sure it is a deer conspiracy. I think they have some type of network where they tell all of their little deer friends where to come for a garden buffet. And from the looks of the tracks, they line up for their turn to munch. Grrr!
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Many a morning I’ll wake up early to water the tender shoots of corn, sweet peas, radishes, spinach, pumpkin, etc. and find the evidence – deer tracks all throughout the garden and little bites taken out of the tiny vegetable leaves. I seriously think the deer had a party in my garden the other night and they made sure to invite the whole gang. There were even cute little baby tracks next to the zucchini.
As you can also notice from the picture above, I don’t have the best of soil. This is year 2 for my garden. The first year we hauled in several loads of topsoil and compost to till into soil. I actually had quite the harvest that first year.. but it was a lot of work! It never ceases to amaze me how you can spend so much time working the soil and tending to the weeds, and yet the work never seems to be done.
The rocks appear out of nowhere and the stubborn weeds keep coming back. Hmm… Seems like life sometimes. However, I find myself actually enjoying spending time keeping up with pulling weeds out of the garden – if only it was this enjoyable with the “weeds” in life.
As you can see, my garden is on top of a hill, where I have a gorgeous view of the mountains. So, when I find myself alone tending to weeds and caring for the emerging seeds, it is really MY Time where I can just get away, pray in the mornings, and come evening reflect on the days events. Good stuff. I find myself humming about now… “and He walks with me and He talks with me and tells me I am His own; and the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known…”
So, after putting all this time and effort into my garden on the hill, it is a bit frustrating to find those deer tracks. I really wish I had a trail camera to post on my garden entrance. Then, if they manage somehow to gain entrance once again to my garden, I would have more proof than just footprints. Let’s hope the fence works, because if they do figure out how to get in, I would probably just have fat and sassy deer smiling at the camera who have seemingly found their secret garden and now can’t figure out how to get OUT.
My other garden anguish that I’m not even going into – Hail. I live in Colorado. What do I expect? Post fence protection placed securely around the garden, it happened. You guessed it. When it rains.. it hails in Colorado. Enough said.

How to make the most of trail camera for hunting bucks?

Hunting is becoming one popular outdoor activity that catches the attention of most people, especially who love to discover. When hunting, individuals often choose the bucks because it requires some skills and effective attention during the session. And choosing the proper trail camera is now the most concern after the compound bow. You can check best arrow rest for compound bow here and it’ll help you to shoot accurately.

Using camera not only makes the hunting season become easier, but increases the productivity in catching the mature deer as well. In this article, we will list out some suggestions that you can consider when catching the bucks instead.

Obviously, knowing how to use the trail camera effectively is the key method which lead to the success of your hunting season. Therefore, individuals need to pay closer attention when purchasing their trail camera. For instance, you should check features such as the light, flash mode, the quality of pictures and even the durability of the battery.

How to make the most of trail camera for hunting bucks

For most people who have not known, the trail camera not only successful in hiding from the deer, but allows individuals to have lots of great images during the hunting process.

Learn about the behavior of the buck

The more hunter knows about the movement of bucks, the more success he will get after the hunting season. If you use the trail camera for such a long time, it would be easier for you to understand the behavior as well as the frequent movements of the buck.

On the other hand, most hunters often share their experience with others. So when participate in a big group, why don’t as some professional hunters for their advices?

How to become familiar with the camera?

Using the camera means that individuals must understand how to install and set up for using. This is the most important process that most hunters need to keep in mind. With 3 basic steps below, individuals now have the general perception in becoming familiar with their trail camera.

  1. Firstly, getting familiar with the trail camera is a must before using it for the real hunting session. For example, you can set up it in the living room then run for some moments before using on the field.
  1. Take a look at some pictures produced by the camera to see whether the quality satisfy you or not.
  1. When target the goal, picking the point which is a little high from your belt is enough for reaching the bucks or other animal.

How to set up the trail camera?

How to set up the trail camera

After getting familiar with the camera, set up it requires you to understand step by step. For people who have just used for such a first time, then you should follow these steps above.

  1. Place the camera at a distance which is measured roughly 15 feet from the animal area
  1. Set up on the high terrain, even on the tree to avoid your camera from sliding away
  1. There will be some bushes of tree near your place, get rid of those bushes to limit the risk of taking false trigger

When setting the trail camera for hunting the bucks, it is highly regarded that individuals get rid of the fog season. In addition, setting the camera which is too close to the buck’s area also make them aware of this.

Bring along the essentials

For most hunters, they tend to catch the mature animal during the hunting season. In some cases, scouting is also considered as one of the most effective methods for catching them. Therefore, having the camera would be the most effective method to enhance the productivity. Best bow quiver will help you to keep your arrow and bow safely and it’ll help you on your hunting aim.

When you hunt in a small area, having one trail camera maybe enough. However, the large area measured for approximately 100 acres or more should have each camera for those areas. And when placing your camera like this, they will look like the field of fruit trees or the huge plots in the country.

Check the sensitivity

Check the sensitivity

On the market, each trail camera comes with different designs and features for individuals to implement in their hunting session. Among those features, users are highly regarded to check the sensitivity before using.

For instance, you can check in different types of terrains and distance that you intend to hunt your bucks

On the other hand, there are lots of things that one trail camera will allow you to adjust including the timer, resolution, operation or even the flash mode. Although testing of those features will take you a lot of time; however, this will worth at the end.

Narrow the area

According the advices of some professional hunters, individuals should research carefully about the places for hunting. For example, it is important to understand whether the bucks often go to this place or not. Or do those places attract lots of hunters during the hunting season.

When individuals have understood and narrowed down the area, it would be easier for them to catch and target the goals. In addition, you don’t have to spend too much time and effort which can become useless at the end as well.

Don’t forget to bring enough battery

Besides the adjustable features and designs, individuals should also keep in mind the batteries. On the market, battery comes in two types including the usual and the rechargeable battery.

For the rechargeable battery, hunters can save lots of money when you want to use for such a long term. According to researches, this type will only cost you 2 sets for replacing within one year.Obviously, it is more convenient and cost-saving compared to the fact that you have to buy a new one.

Top 3 Best Rifle Scopes in the Market

Are you ready for your next hunting adventure? Or are you still in search for the best rifle scope? If you want to claim victory against your dad’s hunting skills, you had better get yourself a rifle scope.

A rifle scope helps you achieve precise shots. It makes firing or hunting more enjoyable and fulfilling because you have the potential to aim at your target. A rifle scope is as important as a rifle. You may be armed with the best rifle but with a poor rifle scope, every shot is doomed to fail.

With hundreds of rifle scopes available, we have narrowed down 3 of the best rifle scopes in the market that will definitely make your next hunting adventure with your dad a sure win!

  1. Pulsar Digisight N550 Digital Night Vision Rifle Scope ($784.24) – Go hunting even at night time with this rifle scope. It features a built-in Infrared Illuminator that allows you to see your target at precise vision on dark areas. Equipped with USB slot so you can document your hunting experience.

 

Features:

  • With built-in Infrared Illuminator to supplement low natural light levels.
  • With click-stop focus position for a more precise target aiming.
  • With Rifle Scope Optics for an enhanced image.
  • With 3 Operating Modes: Contrast Mode, Color Mode, and Sum Light Mode
  • With external Video socket to record your hunting adventure
  • Brightness Adjustment Wheel – allows you to adjust the screen’s appearance according to your preference.

Specifications:

  • Generation: Digital
  • Objective Lens diameter: 50 mm
  • Magnification: 4.5x
  • Maximum detection range, normal night time conditions: 400 yards
  • Resolution: 50 lines per mm

  1. Zeiss Conquest 3-9×40 MC Waterproof Riflescope Matte Black ($569.99) – Conquer the wet and cold weather and go out hunting with this waterproof riflescope.

 

 

Features:

  • Waterproof rifle scope suited for wet season
  • Compact design of 13.15 inches long and 15 oz
  • Wide Coverage: 34 feet at 100 yards and 3x, and 11 feet at 100 yards and 9x
  • 40 MM objective lens diameter
  • Lightweight and compact
  • With ISO 9022-8 Certification
  • Inner lens filled with Nitrogen to avoid mist-view
  • Lifetime Transferrable Warranty
  • Available in Stainless Steel Finish
  • Multiple-coated glass for maximum transmission

Specifications:

  • Objective Lens diameter: 40 mm
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Field of View (ft @ 100 yards) : 33.90-11.01
  • Parallax (yards) : 100; 50 Shotgun

  1. Trijicon AccuPoint 2.5-10×56 30mm Tube Riflescope, Black – Crosshair w/Amber Dot TR22-1 – This dual illuminated rifle scope has advanced fiber-optic aiming point illumination that allows you to shoot target with speed and accuracy.

 

Features:

  • With adjustable aiming brightness
  • With advanced fiber-optic/tritium aiming-point illumination
  • 1/4 MOA elevation
  • Multi-layer coated lenses
  • Scope body crafted of aircraft quality, hard anodized aluminum

Specifications:

  • Illumination Source: Fiber Optics/Tritium
  • Objective Size: 56
  • Magnification: 2.5-10
  • Field of View @ 100 yeards (ft): 37.6 to 10.1
  • Housing Material: Aluminum

If you are a novice and do not know much about rifle scopes, my next article will help you understand how each rifle scope works. Remember that each rifle scope differs from one another.