June 17, 2017
I was on vacation the
last two weeks. We were deep in the
canyons of Montana in Missoula. Stopped
at Jackson along the way. You can tell
the billionaires chased away the
millionaires in Jackson Hole. The Tetons
are always cool to see.
Why did we pick
Missoula? The Boone
and Crockett Club offered me one of
48 total seats at
their April or June measurer's training
sessions (24 each session). I chose
June. Really didn't want to fight any
winter weather in April. Four-and-a-half
days of learning the history of B&C
and measuring two animals from each of
the major categories. I am officially a
Boone and Crockett measurer now. It took
my time and some treasure but something
that was definitely on my bucket list.
And for you rocket surgeons that think
being a measurer (P&Y and/or
B&C) is something where the Clubs
just call you up and and say "You
are a measurer", you are quite
mistaken. It's an invite and most the of
the treasure is yours. And yes, there
are tests and quizzes.
I have been P&Y
certified since 2000 but have desired
the certification of B&C measurer as
well. I know much more about the club
than I ever knew before. I bet most of
you did not know Teddy Roosevelt started
the club in 1887 and the main mission of
Boone and Crockett is conservation. The
antler and horn records is just
part of the conservation effort.
We visited the Rocky
Mountain Elk Foundation. Cool place on
the north end of Missoula. We
have added three new Cabela's stores to
our Cabela's stores list. If you ever
make it to Missoula, Cabela's is on the
south side of town and a great barbeque
place is Notorious P.I.G.
Getting a couple of
bucks on camera
that may have some potential. Early yet.
Maybe one that will push B&C minimum
of 160 by the time he is done growing.
We will know more in August.
I picked up some AAE
Max Hunter vanes. Have wanted to try
them for a while. Fletched three arrows
up yesterday. Two fly great but one not
so great. It had something funky going
on with one of the vanes and I did not
notice it until it was done the first
time. I stripped it and reflected it
last night. Will check it today. The Max
Hunter profile is higher than most other
vanes. I can tell that full cable and
riser clearance is tight on the Carbon
June 4, 2017
Fawning time! Captured
my first fawn photos last week.
Nice to have a break
from the rain. Have had to put my scythe
to use the last couple of weekends
knocking the grass down in front of my cameras.
Looks like the Trail
Camera Shootout results are in. Wow!
There are a lot of cameras to choose
Forced myself to walk
away from my constant paper tuning
checks last week. Been difficult. Withdrawal!
Always looking for the perfect bullet
hole. Think I achieved it. Tried French
tuning for the first time last week.
That works okay as long as you can hold
the pin steady on the string from your
plumb bob type setup and get consistent
releases. My string was a little on the
large side but the process seemed to
achieve my goals. Drove the string into
the target quite a few times. I think
that is the idea. My arrow flight is
much more consistent. It looks good at
18 yards. For those of you interested in
French tuning there are lots of videos
on the web to guide you through the
process. It's simple. Just remember
sight first, rest second.
Still doing lots of
reading on fletching and broadheads. I'm
kind of zeroed in on vane noise right
now. Never realized it before but
different vanes are much louder than
others. I suppose it's logical but I can
definitively hear a difference. I have
some new lower profile, stiff vanes.
Very quiet. I would think that would
help the string jumping but we are
dealing with fractions of a second.
Tough to tell. However, I'm not 100%
satisfied with the flight of those
May 26, 2017
I have been doing lots
of trail camera education, lots of John
Dudley video watching, lots of Hoyt
shooting, yard mowing and a home project
or two. I am currently working on my
movable, rustic, bow mechanic bench.
Love the new Browning
cameras from TCP.
Definitely keepers. These cameras just
keep chugging along. Looks like Trailcampro
finished up some major camera testing
this week too. Their tests always
provide a lot of insight to what the
manufacturers are up to.
Have accepted that I
shoot a slow arrow but very satisfied
with the momentum my setup creates. It
should hit with a wallop.
Evidently, my setup was giving some
false positives during my earlier paper
tuning tests. My rest was initially set
and resulted in a bullet hole....but the
rest location was not in the power path
of the Carbon Defiant 34 and the sight
pin did not line up with the end of my
FMJ 340 arrow. I have
had that happen before. This always bugs
I decided to move the
rest out to the bow power path. After a
couple of paper shots I got my bullet
hole. HHHMMMMMM! Not sure what is going
on but I will take it. Bullet hole as a
result of the QAD HDX in the power path and
now my sight pin lines up with the
arrow. Yes! that's my goal.
Now I'm focusing on
shooting form and release. John Dudley
videos to the rescue. Lots of good stuff
here and presented in a form that I
understand. Good job John.
May 13, 2017
Getting the hang of
the new cameras
and what they like best for setups.
Bucks are growing but nothing stands out
quite yet. Have captured a few pictures
of a real healthy bobcat. Big boy.
Zeroing in on my
fletching setup. Have some new Full
Metal Jacket 340s to get setup. Trying the QAD
Exodus fixed blade broadheads this
hear. Everything I've read so far leads
me to believe my arrow flight will be
good. Focusing more on a hardened tip
versus a cut on contact type tip.
May 4, 2017
Been a while. In the
last month I finally got my cameras
redeployed. I purchased a new Hoyt
Carbon Defiant 34, Hoyt one pin slider
sight and QAD HDX rest. I paper tuned
the Hoyt and have a pin dialed in at 20
yards. I have fletched and refletched
numerous arrows. I am currently
evaluating four 2-inch Bohning Blazers
at 90 degrees set 1-3/4 inch from the
nock groove, four 2.5-inch Bohning Heat
vanes set 1-3/4 inch from the nock
groove and my normal three 4-inch AAE
vanes set about 1-1/4 inch from the nock
groove. Been using 125 grain field
points. Now I have a 531 grain, 5 mm FMJ.
Calculated velocity is around 230 fps.
Slow arrow but good momentum. Flight is
really good but the wind noise from the
Blazers appears quite a bit louder than
the Heat Vanes. Makes sense due to the
It's only 5 months
until season is open and we are chasing
critters again! I'm looking for the vane
setup that gives me the best fixed blade
broadhead arrow flight. Stay tuned.
One last thing, for
you bow mechanics out there I've been
watching a lot of John Dudley YouTube videos thanks to a colleague's
recommendation. Good stuff. Endless
amount of information.
Yeah I know, this site
has been a dead zone for a month. I took
a break. It's been way too muddy to
access the farm and maintenance burning
caused me to pull my cameras. Bucks
should have started growing horns
however I did receive a text last week
with a picture of a buck still carrying
both sides and he was decent.
Been looking for sheds
but not any luck for me. Still a fair
amount of bucks carrying horns and the
sheds I'm sure are out there are not on
my side of the fences. I've never really
let my lack of a shed pile bother me as
I'd much rather have a shoulder mount
with the real horns anyway.
continue to take photos. Captured some
really nifty pictures the last few
weeks. Only four months from now there
will be some bucks with awfully big
horns already. Lets all hope those bucks
call our hunting properties home.
Been spending a lot of
time watching John Dudley Youtube
videos. Love the bow mechanic stuff. I
need a bow press. Well need might be a strong
word. Want a bow press is probably more
Been test driving a
few new cameras (Brownings),
looking for sheds and messing with my
are like their earlier models. They do
many things really well. So far so good.
No luck finding sheds
for me. A few of the older bucks have
shed but sill a fair amount of bucks
Watched a video the
other day about vane placement relative
to the nock throat (1.75 inches from the
nock throat). That sure looks like a
long ways when they are on the arrow. I
am trying some 4-fletch Blazer vanes,
helical, 90-degree spacing and 125 grain
field points. In the past I had always
been a three, 4-inch vane proponent with
100 grain field points. I am trying to
move my FOC (Front of Center) location
farther forward. Shot briefly last
evening (half time of ISU game) to see
how my arrows flew. I may be on to
something. Very tight groups. That was
the intent of the adjustment...to
tighten up my groups. Maybe this FOC
thing isn't over-thinking it. Liked my
results so far. My calculations last
weekend showed me that with a Full Metal
Jacket it will be hard to move my weight
forward a lot. I would almost have to go
to a lighter arrow. Not sure I'm ready
to do that. I would gain more velocity
but I really like my FMJs. However,
there are a couple Easton models I may
Went for a good shed
hunting walk yesterday. Still nothing.
Deer have dispersed somewhat and not
focused on one feed field. Might be
tough to find the treasures. Still quite
a few deer carrying their horns.
Test driving some new
cameras now, the Browning
Strike Force 850, Browning Dark Ops 940
and the Browning Strike Force Pro.
So far so good. The Pro is a very small
camera with a view screen like the Recon
Force from last year. I like it. LED
arrangement is much different.
Shot the Hoyt Carbon
Defiant 34 this week. Liked it. I like a
spongy backwall. The 2017 lineup allows
the removal a certain peg on the cam to
allow for this. Otherwise, left in, it
maintains that hard wall feeling...which
I do not like. Most others like the hard
I purchased myself a
little grain scale for $30. Ass an arrow
builder, why I didn't own one of these
10 or 20 years ago is unknown to myself.
Weighed my arrows. 507 grains fully
outfitted. At 55 lbs the online arrow
calculator tells me 247 feet per second,
plus or minus. Weighed my broadheads
too. My Slick Tricks and Muzzy heads
weigh 100 grains or a smidge under at
99+. My G5s all weigh over 100 grains
(105). This is going to be a fun little
tool. I am also learning there is quite
a bit of variability between arrows. My
Realtree Camo FMJs weigh 7-10 grains
different from my other FMJs.
Pulled my camera cards
yesterday. Looked for sheds a little
too. Reached my 10,000 steps. Foot
hurts. Some yahoo felt the need to shed
hunt mine before me (tracks in the
snow). Many bucks
still carrying both sides anyway.
Going to revamp my
tree stand types next season. More
bowhunting type ladders. Not sure the
stand makers get it yet. Stands need to
have a full platform beneath the seat
and a flip up seat like a hang on so a
person can lean against the tree. Might
have found one that is close but still
has light extended metal platform. Many
of the existing flip up seats don't
allow a guy to lean against the tree.
Browning came out with
their new 2017
cameras already. It was Christmas at
my house again this week as the new Dark
Ops 940 HD and Strike Force 850 HD
came in the mail. Looks like Moultrie
has also released some of their 2017
Spent a little time
last week trying to lengthen the draw on
my back up bow. My Hoyt Carbon Element
has always felt a little short at 30
inches. Got the bowpress out and
untwisted by bow string a few times. Had
to redo my string look and peep sight
but think I got it done. Feels longer.
Would like to shoot outside for my final
approval. Will wait for warm weather
The legislature is
back in session. Make sure to keep
apprised of proposed legislation
affecting your favorite recreational