Part 3: Nature Owes You Nothing, but sometimes a plan comes together.

Part 3: Nature Owes You Nothing, but sometimes a plan comes together.

 4 amcame very early, but where we had this bird roosted was a bit of a drive. We were a little slow getting out of camp, groggily making coffee and since Charles my brother had to work later that afternoon, he was breaking his camp down in the dark so he would have more time to hunt in the morning. Eventually, a little later than we would have liked, we were on the road. We hit our access point and walked in in the dark. It is also spring bear hunting season here in Idaho and not very conducive to turkey hunting were all the bear hunters with their hounds in the area, or the bait sites. The evening before, we had noticed, a few hundred yards from where we were going to try to set up on this gobbler, what we thought might have been a bear bait site. So I was feeling as though we needed to be very cautious moving in in the dark even though we had a lot of distance between us and that site.

 

We reached the area where we had hunted the evening before and heard a gobble right away. It wasn’t even quite light yet but it sounded as though this bird was already on the ground. We continued up the old logging road and found an area for us to hide and set out the decoys right in the old road. The bird was above us still, but judging the terrain and what he had done the evening before, I felt more confident in getting him to see the decoys.

 

He was gobbling his head off, he would respond to my call every time, he liked the area he was in. We could hear him moving back and forth, staying in the same general area, but not moving downhill. Every time it seemed like he was getting closer, the next time I called he would move a bit farther away. I tried mellowing out the calling a bit, soft clucks and purrs, but frankly when I did that it sounded to me like he was losing interest, he certainly wasn’t coming closer. I tried shutting up for a bit to see if his curiosity would get the best of him, but again that made it feel as though he lost interest.


Up to this point, all of the calling I had done had been with my voice. So I grabbed my Uncle’s Quaker Boy Grand Ole Master box call, just to see if adding another voice to the mix might stir things up, but that didn’t do the trick either. The night before, I was worried about overdoing it on the calling, but now I was worried that perhaps I wasn’t being aggressive enough. So I changed up the strategy, become very aggressive with the yelps from my voice and every now and then throwing in a few yelps with the box call. It sounded like he was getting closer but we still couldn’t see where he was. Then he shut up. My brother whispered to me that he saw 4 turkeys walk up the ridge. I was worried maybe he was following some hens away from us. So I did something stupid. There was a lot of cover in between us and where I thought the bird might be, unless he followed those hens. I stood up to see if I could get a location on the bird. It worked! I stood up just in time to see him walk down an embankment and onto the the logging road we were set up on. At this point I felt like we probably had him, but he didn’t gobble again for a bit and when he did it sounded like he had gone the opposite direction on that logging road. I was worried maybe he had seen me when I stood up. But, the aggressive calling coaxed him downhill to our level, so I decided to continue with it, and sure enough he started moving closer. He gobbled a few more times and then shut up again. I couldn’t see him but at this point, according to my brother, the reason he shut up was because he finally got a look at our decoys and he was running for them. Sure enough after at least an hour of calling this cagey old bird I finally had him in the decoys. My Uncle took aim with his Weatherby shotgun and pulled the trigger.


Folks say that when a bird goes down you should be running for it to get ahold of it as fast as you can. Nobody moved when the bird was flopping on the ground. What happened next was nearly a nightmare: I stood up and ran toward the bird because no one else was. But my shotgun was back at the tree. I got up near the tom and he stood up. Shit. Now not only do I not have my gun but being that my Uncle wasn’t right behind me, I was standing down range. I ran to get out of the way and my brother backed up my Uncle’s shot because my Uncle didn’t have a shot from where he stood. Being that my brother had already filled a tag, my Uncle tagged this bird even though he had some back up. We have seen that happen before. In fact, we almost lost a beautiful tom a few years ago that did the same thing-- we thought it was dead but sure enough it got up and ran 300 yards into the woods. We were very lucky to have found that bird. I definitely recommend moving if you shoot a turkey. Make sure your shotgun's safety is on, and hustle.


As I am writing this, I still have not filled a turkey tag this year, and tomorrow is closing day. I think I might make one last effort for a morning hunt tomorrow, but in truth I have had a hell of a season and am proud to have called in two beautiful toms for both my Uncle and my buddy Dan. It isn’t always about filling a tag, I wouldn’t be in the woods at all if it weren’t for my Uncle, and with hunter numbers declining, it is incredibly important that we as sportsman are introducing new hunters to the sport. Dan shot a really nice Tom on his second ever hunting trip. If that doesn’t hook him to the sport I don’t know what will.


But I better get a move on if I’m gonna give it one more shot...

 Uncle Mike and my brother Charles

Uncle Mike and my brother Charles

 Took an hour for me to call this old bird in.  

Took an hour for me to call this old bird in.  

 Mike punched his tag with the knife i got at a Turkey banquet this year...  

Mike punched his tag with the knife i got at a Turkey banquet this year...  

Nature still owes you nothing! Part 2

Nature still owes you nothing! Part 2

Mid afternoon 5-7-18: My Uncle and brother had gone off and hunted one direction of an old logging road, and I went in another. I found some fresh sign, and some areas that just looked too good to not find a turkey. I found a little clearing and waited, calling every 15ish minutes or so but never heard a thing. After about an hour of this my radio squawked at me. They had located a bird. He was gobbling his head off, but they could not get him to come out in the open. He eventually got quiet on them and it was the middle of the day, so we went back to camp and made a plan for the evening hunt. Then we went to have a nice soak in a hot spring, which was just the ticket.


We set out on our evening hunt refreshed and hopeful, walked to the area where they had heard him and without even calling he started to gobble. He was hot. The problem was he was hanging out just uphill from us, and we didn’t have a good way (that we knew of) to get above him. We set our decoys near this old logging road and I started calling him with my voice.


The times I have done this before have been pretty successful, and often times I have been able to make quick work of the situation. Hell, earlier this year when I called in a big tom for my buddy Dan, the hunt was over in about 5 minutes from the first gobble. This tom was a different story. He was cagey, and did not want to come out in the open. He had a ridge he was working, he liked it, and he felt pretty safe. I felt like we needed to relocate our setup in order to have a chance, but we were also worried we were going to bump him if we moved. My Uncle taught me almost everything I know about hunting turkeys, but we have hit a bit of a point where we don’t always see eye to eye on what we ought to do on a given hunt. He is big on decoys, I have had a lot of success without decoys making the difference. I like to be as mobile as we can be in case we need to “run & gun” so if I carry a decoy often times it is one hen, a feeder from Avian X. He has an assortment, and he has had a lot of success doing it but I honestly just don’t like having as much to carry, or having all the setup of 3-4 decoys even if they do look really good...


Anyway, we had a bit of debate between the two of us as to whether we should move, and then the bird sounded off and he was much closer. He was coming, but I was feeling very doubtful as to whether or not he would come out in the open. He would get closer and then trail away a bit. He seemed to respond better when I was aggressive with my calling, but I was worried I would over do it. Despite all the safety warnings against doing this I actually let out a few gobbles myself, thinking maybe he would get worked up over having some competition in the area. He went quiet. I figured it was over for the evening when all of a sudden he came out of the trees about a hundred yards from our location. He never saw our decoys. He was strutting, and started gobbling again once in the open, and now he was even downhill from us. I thought for sure he was going to come up, but he walk through this little depression in the terrain, and over a hill. I suggested one of us running on him, but my uncle didn’t like it and felt like we were going to spook him.


I had a scenario like this play out with another tom last year, and when I ran on him quickly the bird returned without hesitation, but I was unable to get a shot at that bird with my recurve bow. That bird would have been dead if I'd had a shotgun though. So I felt that we needed to get to the crest of the hill he had just gone over and get him, but we waited, and talked about it too long. Sometimes this is the problem with hunting in a group, decisions take longer. We missed the opportunity and listened to this bird make a big circle back up to the area he had been when we first showed up... Damn it. The good news was that we felt pretty good about our prospects for the morning hunt. We knew approximately where he had roosted. We knew he was hot, it would be a matter of getting in a better position in the dark in the morning.


We returned to camp, debated a bit and went to bed with a plan for the morning.

Stay tuned for Part 3 the conclusion! 

 

Turkey season: Nature owes you NOTHING! - Part 1

Turkey season: Nature owes you NOTHING! - Part 1

I have been on a lot of turkey hunts in my life, but the last two seasons have been the most challenging. In 2016 we had a banner year, I filled two tags, called in one of the biggest birds I had ever seen for my Unlce Mike and that was his second bird of the season. Perhaps shortsightedly, we shot all of those birds from the same area, rather than conserving for future hunts... Then the Great Awful Really Bad Winter of '16-'17 hit and I am pretty sure did a number on the turkeys in that area. It is rare for none of our group to fill a few tags every year.  I felt as though there was no way that the same area could still be in recovery mode for 2018, but there I was opening morning praying for a gobble but hearing nothing but deafening silence in our usual spot.

Now, my brother did fill a tag on a jake in that area opening day, but even that left me pondering if the number of males in the area had seriously declined. So we moved locations. I called in a nice tom for my buddy Dan, who is a new hunter, later that week in a completely different area. I told my buddy Luke who is in his second season that I felt good about getting him on a bird despite the poor luck last year. He and I even located a bird in the same place where Dan shot his, but we were unable to get on that bird. When we went back again this last weekend, not only was that bird not gobbling but my Uncle found a pile of feathers by a campsite near where we had heard that bird.

Luke and I hunted and hiked our butts off for a few days but I was unable to help him find a bird. The season isn’t over yet but Luke is short on days available for the rest of the season and so am I. With all that said, the other day we got a tip from a local who had heard some birds in an area near where we have been hunting. My Uncle, my brother and I all went and hunted there but did not hear a damn thing. Sitting in a beautiful meadow with deer passing by and squirrels every now and then threatening their own existence by barking at me, I thought about the time and work put into last season, and this season and about how I was feeling that it was unlikely for me to shoot a turkey this season... Then I thought to myself: “nature owes you nothing”. A friend of mine who had filled an elk tag every year for a decade but didn’t in 2017 came to mind. The elk season for 2017 was weird too, similar the 2017 turkey season, the elk had come off a really harsh winter and then had a fall that was cut short as well. The duck season in 2017-18 was weird too. Because of all the snow melt from the previous year the rivers were still running high in the dead of winter. That meant fewer mallards using the river where we hunt. In my opinion the 2016-17 winter is still sort of haunting us.

Nature owes you nothing. Nature does not care how many days you hunted. Nature doesn’t care if you don’t think you’ve made any mistakes. Nature doesn’t care what camouflage you use or what scent block you use. Nature doesn’t care if this area has always produced birds or elk. Nature doesn’t care if the river is too high for good fishing or duck hunting. Nature doesn’t give a shit about your vortex optics. Nature doesn’t care what gun, or bow, or sidearm you carry. Nature doesn’t care about top of the line or bottom of the barrel. Nature doesn’t care if you didn’t get enough sleep. Nature doesn’t care if you are sore. Nature doesn’t care if your feet are wet. Nature might try to kill you. Nature doesn’t care. Nature owes you nothing.

Nature is beautiful. Nature is terrible. On May 7th, despite Nature, we located a gobbler.

Happy Turkey Season!

Happy Turkey Season!

Happy turkey season! I have said for a long time that, while duck hunting is where I started as a hunter, I really cut my teeth teeth turkey hunting, and that spring gobblers are what made me fall in love with hunting, and with the woods. I try to never miss an opening day, and make damn sure to do at least one 4-5 day trip every year with my Uncle Mike. This year the opening day was on a Sunday, which sometimes is enough to keep me home. On top of that, opening weekend was the Backcountry Hunters & Anglers annual Rendezvous, and it was held here in Boise. I was a bit torn: stay out late and listen to Steve Rinella and Remi Warren tell campfire stories at the Rendezvous, go to bed early and hunt Sunday, or maybe do both....? Choices. Fellow BHA members take note: if opening day had been on a Saturday you would have likely lost out on my attendance. That said, I was really glad I was able to make it this year. I really enjoyed seeing Tyler and the Train Robbers at "Beers, Bands and Public Lands", and enjoyed the film festival as well. I think my favorite film was Randy Newberg’s short film on what public lands mean to him. The campfire stories Saturday night were great. I especially enjoyed one from Remi Warren about his wife, and another about a dude who shot his wife, and another about a dude who was friends with the guy who shot his wife... I hope there is some video of this all somewhere. Also, there was of course Steve Rinella recounting the sobering and somewhat humorous tale of their Afognak Island elk hunt and subsequent bear attack.

So, anyway, after a few nights of drinking and talking public lands, Saturday night after the campfire stories, my brother Charles and his buddy David and I all headed out in the dark of night to find some spring thunder on public lands. MVP award goes to my brother Charles who stayed sober and drove us to our spot, except it wasn’t our spot. See, last year, after the piles and piles of snow we had in both the valleys and the mountains, my belief is that we lost some birds due to a hard winter in our normal spot. This year, I scouted a bit and had been feeling that this year was going to be about as bleak as the year before. So we went to a different spot for the opener, and we went in blind... This was based on a tip I had received from my brother in law who isn’t a hunter, but had said he had seen a big pile of birds in the location. So, after driving in the dark and getting a few hours of sleep, we woke up Sunday morning, perhaps slightly hungover, pounded some Yerba Mate and vitamins, and started hunting.

Turns out the intel from my bro-in-law was legit. Problem was, all of these birds were either on private property or they were within the “safety” zones (no shooting) of some public lands. There also was a lot of competition. Our normal spot typically has some but not a ton. Bottom line is that, while I think there are some ways for us to hunt this area, we need to plan it out a little better, which will probably be a part of our weekend plans.

So, after a few hours in this spot that was new to us, we decided to check things out at our normal spot. We saw a few hens in a meadow we like to hunt, but didn’t hear any gobbles or see any toms or jakes... So we decided to head out for another location. On our way, we happened upon a jake with a group of hens on a logging road, and my brother managed to get good shot. Not as fun as calling a bird in, but he did fill his first turkey tag, and I was relieved to see a male turkey in the area for the first time in two seasons. 

A few days later I took my friend Dan, who is a new hunter this year, out. We went to a spot where I hunted a bit last year and would have filled a tag had I not been carrying my bow. We went to the exact same spot. We were a bit late, but I had a feeling that there would be a bird using this clearing from a logging operation as a strutting area. Sure enough, right as the sun really started to hit the clearing, we heard a faint gobble. I called a bit with my voice and the tom started running. He was coming quickly, so I warned Dan to be ready. From the first gobble to the bird strutting in front of my hen decoy was probably no more than 4 minutes. Dan made a beautiful shot and my only regret is that I left the GoPro at home that day.

Later that week, several of us, including my wife and kids, headed up for the first of our two spring turkey hunting/camping trips. We went back to our normal spot, as I was encouraged by the jake my brother had shot, so I hoped maybe the weekend would be fruitful. We hunted our butts off, hit a lot of new spots in the area and didn’t hear a single gobble or see a single tom or jake anywhere. Now, 2 years ago during the 2016 hunt, my uncle and I each filled two tags from this area. The following winter was a really tough one. I strongly suspect that between losing 4 males from the area and a really tough winter, that the numbers are simply down. It pains me to feel like we need to hunt elsewhere, as this is a favorite spot, but right now I don’t think I would shoot a male out of this area if the opportunity presented itself. We have another trip planned next weekend, and I think our efforts will be focused elsewhere. Stay tuned.

 This young Jake my brother Charles shot had a surprisingly even tail fan!

This young Jake my brother Charles shot had a surprisingly even tail fan!

 My buddy Dan with his first turkey a nice tom with a 9 inch beard! 

My buddy Dan with his first turkey a nice tom with a 9 inch beard! 

IMAGE.JPG
IMAGE.JPG
 When the family hunting excursion turns into the nap that should have happened earlier in the day... 

When the family hunting excursion turns into the nap that should have happened earlier in the day... 

 This is Luke, he has been my best friend since I was a little kid, we met when we were like 6. Stood up at eachother’s weddings, toured together, made music together, made poor decisions together. And now we are having one hell of a time trying to get him on his first turkey... Two seasons in a row our hunting spot is just not producing.... time to move on? Probably. This dude needs to punch a tag!

This is Luke, he has been my best friend since I was a little kid, we met when we were like 6. Stood up at eachother’s weddings, toured together, made music together, made poor decisions together. And now we are having one hell of a time trying to get him on his first turkey... Two seasons in a row our hunting spot is just not producing.... time to move on? Probably. This dude needs to punch a tag!

Updates

Updates

So it has been a while since I posted, and I wanted to take a moment to update what has been going on for those who have followed this blog. First, I want to apologize for the lack of consistency over the past few months. The 2017 hunting season had some success and some failure but I am really pleased with how it turned out in the end for me and my family and I will be posting some of the stories here soon. If we are being honest with each other, we all have successes and failures in the field, sometimes a tag goes unfilled, sometimes the “big one” gets away and it has nothing to do with skill and more to do with shit luck. The last two years have been hit and miss for me. As a result, I felt some pressure to have success this year (in order to write about it) that I didn’t want to take with me into the hunting season, so for better or worse I decided to do less writing this year while hunting in order to focus on the hunt. 
 

Unfortunately toward the end of the waterfowl season I then made a poor life decision that involved going back to a job that I don’t love, or even really like, taking that job was in fact part of a bigger plan, but my wife and I quickly realized that our bigger plans were not as compatible as we had hoped with the job I had returned to. For anyone who is curious I had returned to work as a correctional officer, though I had all the best intentions of getting things squared away and implementing our bigger plans while working as a CO, the job was leaving me hardly any time or patience for my kids, or our big picture plans. So I made a 5.11 style tactical roll emergency exit and put in my notice. That tactical roll did end up involving going back to another job (emergency medical services) that I don’t truly want a career in, but I am only working on a part time basis, and a part time basis where I can make almost as much money and have more days off with family and more time to pursue the bigger picture plans I am pursuing (those will be announced soon). 
 
So if you have been reading or checking back, again, I apologize, I’ll do better. 
 
In the meantime, this week I’ll be interviewed on The Survival Podcast talking about conservation issues and how those do or don’t relate to libertarian philosophy, I will post a link to the show so be sure to look for it. Also this week I will be attending the Backcountry Hunters and Anglers Rendezvous here in Boise and I am really excited about that, especially because Saturday night after the campfire stories session with Steve Rinella and Remi Warren I will be heading out in the dark of night with my brother to wait for the sun to come creeping up on the opening day of Turkey hunting season in Idaho. I don’t like to jinx things, but I feel good about this week. 

Snow day.

DA28E31C-3BAC-453E-AE8D-70FD431C57E8.JPG

On this smoky day in September, I am wishing for a snow day... Well, sort of...  

Idaho needs to be Ready for a Fight. #keepitpublic

Idaho needs to be Ready for a Fight. #keepitpublic

“I doubt they came here to start a fight.”

 

The closing line of an article by Rocky Barker in the Idaho Statesman regarding the closure of some private land that was once open to the public here in Idaho. The land was closed after a change in ownership last year when a few gentlemen billionaires from Texas, the Wilks brothers, bought the property. I won’t get into all the details. If you are from Idaho, you know the story. If you are from any of the other northwest states you likely have heard a similar story.

 

What I want to address here are the insipid calls for friendly relations with these people. I know, I know, honey gets you further than vinegar. I don’t care. Neither, I would wager, do the Wilks brothers. In the article by Barker he talks about how Idahoans need to know where the Wilks brothers come from, which is Texas. He seems to be trying to make the case that if we all just get to know one another and that it’ll all be fine. But in the same article he mentions that the Wilks brothers have been buying up elk hunting property in Montana. Likely employing the same tactics to protect their property that they are employing in Idaho, some of which have people up in arms.

 

As far as getting to know one another, well, I lived in Texas for a few years. It is a beautiful state, with some really good people. But as an Idaho boy, I have to say that the hunting is a real pain unless you are rich. In Texas you have to have a hunting lease or be a property owner in order to hunt. Period. Which limits hunting and other outdoor recreation, due to the lack of public land, to those who can afford it. On top of tags and license fees, one needs to come up with anywhere from a couple thousand dollars to $12,000 per gun and up. At leasehunter.com I saw one lease for $60,000. Annually. This can vary from place to place, but the bottom line is I don’t know many average joe hunters who can afford to drop an extra $12,000 a year in order to hunt.

 

Now, I will fully acknowledge that the Wilks brothers have a right to do what they wish with their property. But what I cannot stand the thought of is Idaho turning into a state like Texas down the line, a state without public access; a state where there ain’t really anywhere to go unless you’ve got permission from the owner, and where the owner is only going to grant that permission if you cough up thousands and thousands of dollars each year.

 

The Wilks brothers may not have come here for a fight. But Idaho needs to be ready for one. Not necessarily against the Wilks brothers, but against those politicians who would support the sale of the public lands that we have left to enjoy in Idaho. People like the Wilks brothers aren’t evil. They are living their version of the American dream as Barker mentioned in his article. But they would love to own even more of our beautiful state, for their use, and their profit, and I am sure that they are cozy with some of the Republicans who have proposed massive sell offs. In fact, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the Wilks brothers’ land purchases in Idaho and Montana are in anticipation or hopes of a potential sell off in the future that they might be able to take advantage of. Barker also noted in his article that they had employed lobbyists who had been shopping legislation around in the statehouse to try to strengthen Idaho’s private property laws. Does that sound like people who haven’t come here for a fight?

 

#keepitpublic

Libertarianism and Conservation Part 2: The Non Aggression Principle

Libertarianism and Conservation Part 2: The Non Aggression Principle

"The unfortunate reality is that with nearly 8 billion people on the planet, it wouldn’t take much for the people of today to rob the people of tomorrow of wildlife and natural resources. As such, I am completely fine even as a libertarian with Game Wardens carrying guns and enforcing laws that will help ensure that my grand children can hunt and fish for some of their food as well." 

Libertarianism and Conservation

Libertarianism and Conservation

"I believe wholeheartedly in libertarian ideas. I also believe wholeheartedly in the conservation of our natural resources, wild places, and wild others for future generations as a renewable resource. I do not believe that this is opposed to the ideas of liberty." 

Turkey hunting with my recurve bow.

Turkey hunting with my recurve bow.

 "What the hell happened? I turned and looked at my arrows and the cover had come off and there were nice bright colors for the turkey to have seen."

 

House Joint Resolution 69

House Joint Resolution 69

 "The Senate just voted to legalize the killing of baby bears and baby wolves with poison from helicopters armed with nuclear weaponry and steel traps"... Or something to that effect.

Introducing the Taking Game Podcast.

Introducing the Taking Game Podcast.

Admittedly I have a lot of work that I need to do on this here blog...
 
One thing that I have been considering adding to it for a while now is a podcast, with mostly informal conversation about hunting, tactics, gear, stories etc. I thought about waiting to get the blog more traffic and readers, but decided that it wouldn't hurt to get started right away. So. Without further ado: Episode one of the Taking Game Podcast. 
 
In this episode I am joined by my long time friend and new-to-hunting hunting partner Luke. We talk about traditional archery, the upcoming turkey and spring bear hunting seasons and sidearms while hunting. 

More to come. 

Stay Tuned. Good Luck. Be Safe.  

https://www.spreaker.com/show/taking-game-podcast 

New to Archery

New to Archery

 "Recurve and longbows are very simple when compared to their cousin the compound bow which is much more complex to tune and maintain with more moving parts, sights etc etc. Our ancestors used traditional archery and we would not be here if they hadn't. If the simplicity of traditional archery worked for them, then I feel like I ought to give it a try."

The Libertarian Case for Public Lands

The Libertarian Case for Public Lands

 "...what is left of the American West is a Treasure. It may in fact be the last bastion of freedom in this country. Untouched. Rugged. Wild."

The slow season

The slow season

 "This is a tough time of year for a hunter. Waiting, for the right time to start scouting again. Waiting for the fishing to get good. Hoping that April doesn't take too long to get here."

In with the new

In with the new

 "2016 had some highlights. Shot 2 turkeys in the spring season. Called in a monster tom for my Uncle 20 minutes after I filled my second tag. I also shot my first bear in September. And quite a few ducks before 2017 rang in. But I had some down points as well. I spent 15 days in the field trying to shoot a deer and failed to get the job done. I wasn't even being picky. Last year, my goal was to put the meat in the freezer. Nothing less nothing more. For all the time I spent, and the opportunities missed I am disappointed that I didn't get it done."

My tag is burning a hole in my pocket.

My tag is burning a hole in my pocket.

 "I have a beautiful black lab named Tanker from Tiger Mountain Pointing Labs in Washington. He is not very happy with me. I have been trying to fill a deer tag since October 10th. The job isn't done yet, and it is eating into his bird hunting season."

Fall

Fall

 "You might notice it in the valley, the morning air is cooler, and a few leaves here and there are changing colors, maybe a few are falling too. Climb in elevation, even ever so slightly though, and the presence of autumn is more apparent than a few leaves and a change in the air."

Calling in my first bear, with nothing but my voice.

Calling in my first bear, with nothing but my voice.

"...there is something different about shooting a bear from a deer. I thought of my family and thought of the meat I would be able to put on our table by taking this animal's life. I put the crosshairs back on the bear's chest, it was facing me, I squeezed the trigger."