Hunting Photo Friday

I always tell stories about these photos. When we were 2 & 4 at our Uncle Paul’s with all the Uncles and our dad with the days harvest.   The year is 1986. Almost 30 years ago and our hunting bug is still alive.

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My big brother Nate and myself

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Nate and our cousin

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One of our cousins

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Trail Cam Wednesday!

Just wanted to share a little video showing a few deer that we are looking forward to seeing this hunting season from our stands.

October 1st is bow opening and these lucky guys will get to wait a few weeks until the stalk will be on. Not every buck in this video will be shot at. We will hope that the 2nd and 1st year bucks will survive the season, winter, and the summer traffic.  Then next year if the proper genes prevailed, they will be some very nice bucks with big bodies and nice racks.

That is one thing I enjoy about our family. We don’t shoot at fawns, young small does, or small bucks and there are definitely some keepers in this video. I hope you enjoy the snippet and can feel a pang of jealousy 😉

Some trail cam action!

Some trail cam action!

Weekend Recap

This past week, the corn was chopped behind the house by the local farmer. Now every morning, before Zoey and I head to daycare and work, we say good morning to the ladies as they eat their breakfast.  There has been 2 does and a fawn out there and we need to remind our daughter not to yell at them and spook them away.

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My First “Big Buck”

As we get closer to the season starting I think of the deer I have passed up, and the deer I have not.  One particular story that I will continue to tell is of my first “big buck”.  Now this buck is not in any record books but it is the largest one I have ever shot and to me it is a big buck.

This memory takes place back in December 2013.  It was muzzle loader season so approximately mid-December, the 11th to be exact.  I was supposed to go out on a Tuesday afternoon. The wind was right, there was no real snow on the ground. It was a pleasant afternoon.  However, due to an unscheduled conference call I was forced to stay at work.  At the time I was also taking classes for work in Chemical Engineering so when I chose to go out that following day, Wednesday, I would leave straight from my afternoon class to the farm.

The Wednesday was different weather-wise. Overnight it snowed quite a bit.  It was still chilly and cold and I had to wear my snow camo.  The best way I describe snow camo on myself is a giant stay puff marshmallow with teal snow boots. But I was determined to get out one more time before season closed and off I went.

I was going to a location that we call “the neck”. It is between two sets of woods.  I parked and started to walk with my muzzle loader on my back.  I got into the neck and I could see about 300 yards into the field, 15-20 does. I knew this would be a good day as long as I could get on top of the crest of a hill without being smelled or spotted. I started to walk further into the woods out of their line of site and creep slowly up the hill. With the recent snow fall I wasn’t able to see the fallen limps or holes in the ground which meant that extra caution was needed.

I made it to the top of the hill and crawled until I got to “my tree”. I call it this because I always sit at this tree if I’m on the ground in the neck.  There is a rock at the base and you can see all around you in the woods and out into the field. Let me just say that I did not scare any deer away, and the movement in and out of the woods was intense.  250 yards straight south of me was a bedding area of deer. 100 yards from me along the tree line edge does and fawns were running in and out of the woods playing.  150-180 yards  into the field were approximately 20-30 does and fawns eating.  No matter what happened, today was going to be a great day.

I watched all around for movement. I was looking for a big buck and this would be the spot I would find him.  I arrived in my spot around 2:30pm in the afternoon and around 3:45pm a nice 8 point walked out of the woods.  I was kind of happy. The wind had picked up and even with the multiple layers, gloves and face mask I was cold. Ice cold.  I drew up my range finder to get an accurate distance and then noticed something walk into my vision.  A very beautiful 9 point.  He was big of body and mass and put the 8 point to shame.  I ranged him. 185 yards.

It was a long shot, a very long shot, but one I didn’t know if I could pass up.  I drew up my gun and put him in my sites. He was eating and walking and stopping. Creating a perfect shot. I was hoping to have him walk a bit closer but the does in the field started to get reckless. A twitch here, a head bob there. I knew they were about to run. I took my shot.

Up he jumped, in a circle he ran, and down he went. 50 yards from where I shot him to where he finally laid down which was not bad for such a large animal. I reloaded as fast I could. Single shot black powder rifles are not always the easiest, especially for me, with adrenaline pumping and numb fingers. The next was the phone calls. Nate called me and then I called my dad back, since he called as well. They both said the same thing, “How big and is it dead?” I don’t know and yes.

My size gauge is not always the best so when I say it was big, they usually think I’m lying. Well this time, when my dad, Kenny and Nate pulled up they were pretty darn happy with my choice. A single shot through the lung at 180 yards.  I was sure lucky.  We took the photos with the snow camo on and we loaded him into the truck.  My dad didn’t want me to clean him there since they wanted to use the woods in a few days and use the cleanings for coyote bait.

We went back to the barns behind the bunker and I cleaned him then hung him at my parents.  The rest is history.  I know that I may never get another chance to shoot a buck in snow camo in the late season.  Muzzle loader season is now anterless deer only. It’s disheartening that we have gone this way, but you can’t control DEC some days. I hope that this season is the only season of this decision and they realize the error in this choice.

If you want to check out the “big buck” you can see the photos on a hunting photo Friday post here.

Guest Post – Leanne Worboys – Bow Fishing, the Experience

I am super excited to have my first guest post! My friend Leanne posts these great photos of her experiences and I asked if she would tell me a bit about bow fishing. 

All spring the anticipation for the ice to start melting becomes greater and greater when you realize May 31 is in the near distance. I love the great outdoors and Gods gifts to this earth, nature and the serenity it beholds; one of the things I love most is bow fishing. Fishing in the lakes of western New York is awesome, that flicker of excitement when you get a bite and all the hard work pays off after you reel in a big fish. But what is the real thriller is shooting a fish out of the water with a bow. Crazy, right?

I catch a quick nap before the sun sets; while getting the boat batteries all charged up for a long night filled with lights. Making sure our arrows and bows are all loaded up, we head to the launch right before dusk to set the lights and generator up in the boat. Making sure all the gear is thrown in the boat and the batteries are hooked up right to the trolling motor, we go to a secluded lake about 5 miles long not too many people know about; loaded with carp. We back the boat in, park it next to the dock and give the generator a few pulls. On it goes, the lights start to heat up and get bright, real bright.

We are off, trolling along the banks looking for any sort of movement in the water. Early on the fish are 5+ feet down too far to be shooting at but when the temperature is just right and the water is to their liking they are right under the surface. We troll banks and shallow spots throughout the lake. They love seaweed; they are bottom feeders so it’s their main food source. The lights reach out about 10 feet which is a trick shot if you can hit a carp out that far.

Trolling along I start to see some movement, bass and walleye zooming by the lights. Then the carp start to appear. Their eyes and skin glow from the bright lights, easy to spot out. Four people standing up fighting for the first shot. FEW! FEW! Arrows flying into the water, it’s a thrilling moment when you see a 30 pounder swimming by. The adrenaline is pulsating and you don’t think, you pull back aim and release. Milliseconds after you are searching for your arrow anticipating it moving through the water like a thrashing shark. Then there is goes! Away from the boat in a furry, you drop you bow and start pulling in line as fast as you can. Praying to god the arrow doesn’t come out before you haul your trophy into the boat.

When it’s in the boat it’s a rush to get the arrow out of the fish before you start tangling lines and worst case you got two thrashing fish in the boat with 15 feet of line spooled out. Unscrew the tip of the arrow and off the fish goes right into the barrel. The boat keeps on trolling and you’re standing back up on the plat form bow in hand eyes dead locked on the water searching for your next victim.

What do I do with the fish you ask? Well carp are bottom feeders as I mentioned before therefore they eat the junk of the bottom of creek beds and lakes. They are perfect fertilization for my back farming field. It has been said that carp are detrimental to other fish and duck habitat which provides to be beneficial to the environment to shoot carp & turn them in to fertilizer.

What I use. My bow fishing set up consists of a Mathews Solo Cam MQ1 bow. Originally a professional target shooting bow passed down to me from a family friend, it was used  to kill my first deer back in 2007 and since updating to a Mathews Z7 Extreme in 2011 it has stuck with me for my bow fishing bow. It has an AMS bow fishing reel and various different arrows have been put through it. The sight I use is an old Tru Glow sight that the outer plastic is broken off from a flying arrow.

If you have not tried bow fishing I suggest you put it on your bucket list because it truly is a thrilling experience!

Leanne with her catch

Leanne with her catch

Leanne with her bow

Leanne with her bow

Leanne and her catch

Leanne and her catch

My name is Leanne Worboys, I am 23 and live in Hamlin NY. I am an avid hunter, when I am not hunting I’m working on my pallet art business called Doe Made Rustic Designs. This company was created from my love of hunting and the outdoors. I have been hunting for about 15 years and grew up with the hunting lifestyle taught by my dad and brother. Hunting is a big aspect of my life and whether it be deer, turkey, waterfowl or fishing I am out every chance I get.

Hunting Photo Friday

As the end of summer draws near I always think of when I was a kid and how my summers were spent, every other weekend, on the water with my dad, my grandpa, and my brother. Our trips to Lake Leroy, Lake Champlain, Quebec, Ontario, Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. We loved to fish.  So, here are some throw backs to our fishing days.

My fish and I

My fish and I

My dad and grandpa Smith

My dad and grandpa Smith

My dad and grandpa Smith

My dad and grandpa Smith

Nate and his fish

Nate and his fish

Daylight Savings Time

At work this past week we had a conversation about daylight savings time. When it was occurring this year specifically, and it is October 31st.  I knew that I remembered this because it was midway thru bow season.

So my question is, how does daylight savings time affect the hunter? If it was taken away what would that do? Could we wake up later and hunt longer? The deer’s cycle should not change since they eat with the cycles of the sun.

My thought is that daylight savings time should be done away with. We won’t end up like Alaska with zero light for 28 days, but our light and dark hours would change.

From a hunting standpoint, I honestly do not think it would cause an adverse affect to the day to day deer and hunter routine.

What do you think? Would daylight savings time affect your hunting? Why?

Also, don’t forget to change your smoke alarm batteries when you set your clock back!!

p.s. sorry for the short post it has been a busy week with work and starting gym class again for the little one so I need to step up my game next week!