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Guides & Outfitters
Cameron Tucker – Tucker’s Guide Service
Yuba City, CA
Shawn Howe – Howe Guide Service
7808 Hilyard Avenue, Klamath Falls, OR, United States
Troy Barr – T-Roy’s Guide Service
Dog Trainers & Kennels
Dave and Carlene Bales – Full Throttle Retrievers
P.O. Box 1064
Keno, OR 97627
HOME (541) 851-8173 or CELL (541) 891-8434
Hydrographics & Cerakoted
Travis & Kristin Van Alfen – Intermountain Hydrographics
5162 S 5950 W Hooper Utah
Franklin Hargrove – Cactus Weapons Systems Inc.
109 Pierce Street Del Rio, Texas 78840
How to Create a Killer Boat Blind on a Budget
by Mike Marsh | May 6th, 2015
Ryan Gipson’s first hunt was for woodies with his dad. Just six or seven at the time, he fell in love with the birds. Gipson, who resides in Robertsdale, Ala., mainly shoots gadwalls, redheads, bluebills and buffleheads in Mobile Bay, but still chases a few wood ducks on the Upper Delta.
“Mobile Bay is a tidal salt marsh and the Upper Delta is mostly flooded hardwoods,” said Gipson, a 2014 B&B contest honorable mention. “From where I launch to where I set up in the bay is about a 10-minute boat ride, and it takes us about two minutes to set up my blind.”
Gipson began looking for a better way to hunt ducks after an unpleasant experience on Mobile. He was hunting out of a 15-foot Gheenoe when the boat almost sank.
“ After hunting a few hours and bagging four or five ducks, we decided to call it a day,” he said. “The wind had gotten a little stronger and was now blowing out of the west. The bay was white-capping and the water was coming over the sides. After both of us moved to the back of the boat to raise the bow, we somehow managed to make it back to the launch.”
Who’s The Boss
On the old Gheenoe, Gipson had built a blind from some wire shelving. After months of debate with his wife about hunting more safely and hours of looking over used boats online every night, he finally found one that would fit his budget.
“Last summer, I purchased a 1648 Alumacraft that had all the makings for a great duck boat,” he said.
Gipson wanted a nice blind to go with the best boat he ever owned. However, the standard pop-up blinds he found cost between $350 and $600.
“No way could I talk the boss lady into letting me spend that,” he said. “I had several ideas for blinds, but one kept sticking in my head.”
The blind Gipson designed and built fit all of his criteria at a cost of only $150. While we have seen dozens of different pop-ups for johnboats, his telescoping design was unique.
The blind consists of 1½-inch EMT for the bottom section of each leg, 1¼-inch EMT pipe for the middle section and 11/8-inch chain-link fence post pipe for the top section. Each section slides into the other. The sections are held in place by clip pins inserted through holes drilled through them. The necessary pipes come in 10-foot lengths.
“This blind can be modified to fit any boat,” he said. “First, you cut each size of the pipe into four 18-inch sections and keep the excess for making cross-members. Cut the sections to allow up to 2 inches of the pipe to project into the corresponding lower section to provide extra support when the blind is erect. The four different leg systems are grouped together and a 5/16-inch hole drilled through the tops of each of the pipes to receive the clip pins.
“This is best achieved by using a drill press to keep the holes’ alignments straight and true through the corresponding sections. The goal is to insert a 5/16-inch clip pin through the holes to keep the sections erect, but with as little play as possible.”
Once all four leg assemblies are clipped together they should be as straight as possible. Each leg assembly will move around a bit while it is freestanding, but will tighten up once the top poles of the blind have been attached.
At the bottom of each leg assembly, Gipson installed a metal self-tapping screw, but he said a pin or bolt would work also. These screws are about 1½ inches from the base and keep the center section from falling all the way down inside the bottom section when the blind is lowered.
Next, Gipson installed eight 1½-inch conduit hangers in the boat. He said that any type of fastener could be used to attach them to the sides of the aluminum boat seats, but he recommended using rubber expansion well nuts because they secure everything tightly, yet allow the blind to be removed easily at the end of the season. Two clamps are required to hold each leg assembly in place. The paired clamps must be perfectly aligned from top to bottom so the blind will slide up and down properly.
“I installed a 90-degree chain-link fence corner connector at the top of each leg assembly and screwed a self-tapping screw through it into the 11/8-inch top pipe. On my boat, the length of the opening was roughly eight feet, so I cut two pieces of 11/8-inch pipe to that length and secured them into the 90-degree connectors. Before tightening them all the way, I checked the top piece to make sure it was level. If it is not, just cut one of the top leg sections. I used another self-tapping screw to attach the corner connector to the top rail.”
Using the leftover pieces of 11/8-inch pipe, Gipson made two cross-members for the fore and aft ends at the top of the blind. He secured these to the tops of the blind’s side rails with 5/16-inch clip pins. When he transports the blind, he removes one pin and the other pin becomes a pivot point so the front and back cross-members rotate out of the way, along the side rails.
The base layer of camouflage material consists of grass mats, which Gipson secured to the frame with zip ties. Gipson zip-tied a full-length piece of ¾-inch PVC pipe to the bottom of the mats to keep them weighted when they fall outside of the boat while the blind is deployed for hunting. He rolls the grass mats around the PVC for transport and storage and keeps them in place with Bungee cords. When he erects the blind and unrolls the mats, they cover the engine, bow and gunwales.
“Ducks don’t care how much you spend on your rig,” Gipson said. “We’d all probably be better off just sticking to the basics.”
1 10-foot length of 1½-inch EMT pipe
1 10-foot length of 1¼-inch EMT pipe
3 10-foot lengths of 1 1/8-inch chain-link fence post pipe
8 1½-inch EMT conduit hangers
12 5/16 x 2¾-inch clip pins
4 1 1/8-inch chain-link fence 90-degree connectors
Self-tapping screws and clip pins or other connection hardware
by David Hart | December 3rd, 2014
After years of stops and starts, waterfowl conservationists are finally getting their wish: The price of a Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp will go up by $10, likely in time for next season.
A bill sponsored by Representative John Fleming (R-LA) passed the House in November with broad bi-partisan support. A companion bill, The Federal Duck Stamp Act of 2014 (S. 2621), was sponsored by Senator David Vitter (R-LA). It passed the Senate, also with strong support on both sides of the aisle, in December.
The price increase was welcome news to duck hunters and wetlands conservationists who have been pleading with Congress to raise the price of a duck stamp for at least a decade. The cost of a postage stamp increased 14 times during the same period, but the infamously slow political process, along with reluctance over raising a perceived tax, hampered congressional efforts to approve a fee hike. Americans for Prosperity ripped the Federal Duck Stamp Act of 2014, calling it a tax increase on duck hunters.
“Duck stamp revenue fits the bill of Washington ineptitude — the user fee on hunters is used to give more land to the federal government, which already owns over a quarter of all the land in the country and cannot manage it properly,” the group wrote in a blog post in November.
AFP clearly didn’t do its homework. Support for the stamp increase has been widespread throughout the duck hunting and conservation community. Ducks Unlimited and Delta Waterfowl pushed for the increase. So did dozens of other pro-hunting conservation groups.
The money generated from the sale of duck stamps, which are required for all migratory waterfowl hunters over 16, goes directly to easement acquisition or the outright purchase of high-quality wetlands habitat, not into the federal government’s general fund. Land includes waterfowl production areas in the Prairie Pothole Region, along with national wildlife refuges, many of which are open to hunting.
More than $800 million has been generated from the sale of the stamps since they were first required in 1934 and more than 6 million acres of wetlands have been protected. The program also has one of the highest returns-on-investment of any federal program. Ninety-eight cents of every dollar generated goes directly to land acquisition or on-the-ground efforts.
Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership director of government relations Steve Kline said the additional $10 will go only to easement acquisition, a stipulation that was written in the bill. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, he noted.
“We can actually do more with easements, in part because the cost of land has gotten so high in recent years,” he said. “Dedicating the increased revenue to easements also frees up the rest of the money generated from duck stamps for land purchases, so it’s a win-win.”
Land prices in some parts of the Prairie Pothole Region, known as the “Duck Factory,” have tripled in the last decade, thanks largely to soaring commodity prices. Farmers are plowing under native grassland and opting out of the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), both of which provide critical nesting and brood-rearing habitat for waterfowl, so they can plant more crops. According to a report by the Wildlife Management Institute, an acre of duck habitat in the PPR purchased with stamp revenue cost about $306 in 1991. The same land was selling for over $1,000 in 2010.
“That’s one reason why the stamp increase was so important right now. We are losing high-quality nesting habitat in the Prairie Pothole Region and land prices may continue to increase,” adds Kline.
Although it isn’t known when President Barack Obama will sign the legislation into law, Kline and other conservation group representatives have no doubt he will sign it.
by John Taylor | February 10th, 2015
Over the past several years, I have twice lost a band on a coin toss. Not just a run-of-the-mill band, but one from an Atlantic brant and the other from a speck. If I’d had some Spectra Shot, I might have been able to claim both. On other occasions, hunting next to Joe Blowhard, who claimed every difficult shot, a quick necropsy would have revealed the true dead-eye.
Spectra consists of standard steel pellets, coated with a proprietary color—blue, green, orange and yellow—that does not rub off or shatter when fired. Apparently, the folks at Spectra have been submarined by a few too many shot claimers too, and decided to do something about it: Issue everyone a different color, and let the knife determine who shot what.
Though I am a firm believer in the Nash Buckingham doctrine, “Don’t send a boy on a man’s errand,” (i.e. stick to the 12-gauge), there are times when a smaller-gauge will do the job. Women, youngsters, and those of us older hunters who have had various parts replaced, often need to back off the firepower.
Spectra loads a 3-inch 20 with 1-ounce of shot, so I decided to give them a whirl at the patterning board (our season was still a ways from opening). My shotgun of choice was the Benelli Cordoba, designed for high-volume dove shooting, it’s a basic Benelli 20-gauge with a ComforTech stock, ported barrel, lengthened forcing cone and a couple of other bells and whistles.
I shot a Briley Light Modified choke at 30 yards and then the Benelli Crio Modified at 40. The 30-yard LM patterns were impressive with an average of 83 percent of the 189 pellets inside the 30-inch circle. There was some central thickening with 55 percent of the pattern within the center 22-inch ring and 27 percent in the outer ring.
By dividing the pattern into these concentric rings, there are two equal size areas to compare results. What impressed me was the evenness of the patterns across the 30-inch circle. Not many ducks or geese could fly through these killer patterns and survive.
The Modified choke at 40 didn’t fare quite as well. Not surprisingly, the additional 10 yards contributed to the thinning pattern. There’s an old wives’ tale that small-gauge patterns are smaller in diameter. Not true, but they are thinner due to the lighter shot charge.
Our Modified patterns averaged 57 percent, just a shade below expected 60 percent Mod patterns at 40 yards. The outer ring had an average of 22 percent with the inner ring averaging 35 percent; again, quite even, but thin with several areas devoid of pellets, which is expected as yardages increase.
After 10 shots over my chronograph, the shells averaged 1,342 fps; darn close to Spectra’s published 1,350 fps. Since steel loses energy fast, the maximum range is about 35 yards. At 40, the retained energy is right on the ragged edge of lethal at 2.19 ft/lbs.
Checking recoil with the KPY ballistics program, the 6-pound 8.6-ounce Cordoba’s recoil velocity was 15.71 fps, and the recoil energy (what it feels like on your shoulder) was 26.08 ft/lbs. A 1,200 fps 1-ounce target load generates a recoil velocity of 14.76 fps and a recoil energy of 21.98 ft/lbs, which is one reason why 20-gauge duck loads are appropriate for those who are sensitive to recoil. Also, when the ducks are decoying close, all you need are open chokes and a small-gauge shotgun.
Take ‘em as they come is still 12-gauge territory, but more and more hunters are eschewing heavy recoil when conditions allow.
HOW TO PACK A YETI COOLER FOR A HUNT
Written by Khoa Le on October 10
When packing for an early-season hunt, when temperatures are still high, you need to know how to get your meat cooled down as quickly as possible.
Knowing the right way to pack a YETI cooler will not only give you enough space, but also the ability to make the most of it to keep your hard-earned meat cool and dry.
Here is how to pack a cooler for a hunt.
1. The first step in packing a cooler for a hunt is what I call “priming the cooler.” Hours before you start packing, add a small layer of ice to the bottom of the cooler.
When you’re ready to start loading, be sure to let out any melted water that may have accumulated.
Also as part of the priming process, make sure that you pre-chill all food before you put it into the cooler.
2. Freeze some plastic water bottles and use them as ice.
This is very important as it reduces the amount of melted water in the cooler so that your meat stays more dry.
Don’t worry. Plastic water bottles are built to expand so they won’t explode in the freezer.
3. When packing bottles in a cooler, alternate between right-side-up and upside-down to fill the gaps.
The tighter you can pack, the better.
4. Next, add another small layer of ice and put in your pre-chilled food items which have been packed in resealable bags or containers.
If you’re making scrambled eggs, pre-scramble them and put them in an air-tight bottle. Meat, such as bacon, can sit on top of the ice.
5. Hunting in the heat means losing water and nutrients.
That’s why I like to pack sports drinks and extra water bottles last for easy access.
It’s for this reason I like to keep beer toward the top as well
6. Your cooler is now ready to protect the meat you’ll work your tail off to harvest.
Make sure you get it there without it spoiling.
This means cooling the meat as soon as possible by hanging the quarters in the shade or dunking it in a nearby water source before patting it dry to pack out.
Although you’ve reduced the amount of melted water in your cooler by using frozen water bottles, investing in game bags will go a long way in further protecting your harvest.
When you’re out in the field, keep your cooler out of the sun and especially out of a hot truck.
Safely store it in some shade and consider how far away from it you should be hunting.
It’s not a very successful hunt if all you’ve got to show for it is a set of antlers and a bunch of spoiled meat.
Avid Waterfowler, Upland Game Bird Hunters.
Pacific Flyway Supplies is all for you.
Just like yourself we are avid waterfowlers and upland bird hunters.
We seem to find the same problem when shopping for gear: poor quality, limited supply, store employees lack of product knowledge and most of all limited brands.
We are focused on supplying QUALITY products to our customers and fellow waterfowl hunters.
Lets talk about quality from a waterfowl hunters stand point.
Quality to a waterfowler is products such as decoys, clothes, calls, and accessories.
With these product groups we have had to become more reliable on are gear to last in the tough economy.
Within the last few years manufacture’s have made some poor choice in producing quality gear.
So you might ask then what does quality gear mean to Pacific Flyway Supplies.
Great question, quality gear to Pacific Flyway Supplies means products that last 2-5 years for the waterfowl hunter in his blind every day to the hunter that hunts weekends with his kids.