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Posts Tagged ‘Tri-Tronics’

You can see Canada from the deck of your safari-style tent at Sage Safaris, a brand-new hunting operation north of Havre, Montana. Between our neighbors to the north and the tents are more whitetails per square mile than I’ve ever seen, and healthy populations of sharptail grouse and ringneck pheasants.

Kind of “roughing it smoothly,” the tents are heated and the beds are soft. (See video here.) Most importantly, the game in the coulees and plains is plentiful … if you’re willing to work. Or should I say walk.

Buddy was in the zone, covering ground according to the cover (closer in the cattails, running bigger in the grasslands). Surprisingly, a sharptail was the first to fall to my gun following a stalk through short grass and low sagebrush. Several ringnecks flushed wild in the distance, skittish from the wind and sounds of a gang of humans – likely the first they’d heard all year.

Now, for a short commercial message:

Please remember to vote NOW for your favorite dog, non-profit, and breed and help them and possibly yourself in our Wingshooting  USA features …

www.wingshootingusa.org … Take one of your kids hunting on the show next season. Click on the “Win a Shot on the Show” icon.

www.blackswingandclay.com… Cash for your conservation group, Cabela’s gear for you! Click on the “Hot Dog” icon.

www.nativedogfood.com … a TON of food for a hunting dog rescue club. Click on the “”Win a Ton” icon in the upper left corner.]

Thanks sponsors: Black’s Wing & Clay Waterfowl, Irish Setter, TriTronics and NSFF/www.wingshootingusa.org. Leave a comment, you might win a pair of Irish Setter boots and hunting jacket!

Back to the story: The “moose pit” yielded our first pheasant, so named because even the plains of northen Montana harbor a few of the swamp donkeys. Buddy tracked, crept, pointed and then finally and tremblingly, held solid for this bird, which Jake dropped into the buffalo berry.

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ALONG LAWYER’S CREEK near Kamiah, Idaho: This desert rat was in heaven: three gun dogs, a cottonwood-lined creek and plenty of shade. Do you know the feeling? A change of scenery, fresh perspective, everything seems brand new and full of potential. All participants were cooler by a large measure than during our last hunt at Flying B Ranch, a blistering chukar expedition called on account of heat at 9 a.m. [Watch the very raw sky-cam footage, above.]

The ringnecks that dwelled among the thorns and cattails of this valley knew their neighborhood well, testing the dogs’ noses and hunters’ shooting abilities. Often more like a ruffed grouse hunt with brush-busting and tangle-inducing vines and branches, there were times when your shot was pointed at a white neck ring and nothing else in the shadows of chokecherry and cottonwood.

Guide Rich Coe’s dogs were trained to handle the bird flushing when needed, and they were needed often. Maybe you don’t like the idea (can you say porcupine?), but it was most appreciated by this bruised and battered, scratched and skinned-up hunter. Finding footing and swinging room for safe shots (two camera operators in tow) was tough enough without having to boost every bird from it’s hidey-hole.

And boost we did, flying a lot of birds, shooting at some, and hitting a few. One memorable flush ultimately yielded four roosters; we gawked instead of getting close enough for a shot, thinking each was the last to fly. (Count to four real slow … that’s how it played out.)

The jungle-like cover took its toll, as did the jinking and juking pheasants. But plenty of birds ended up headed for the table of a deserving family somewhere in the Kamiah metropolitan region.

Thanks sponsors: Black’s Wing & Clay Waterfowl, Irish Setter, TriTronics and NSFF/www.wingshootingusa.org. Leave a comment, you might win a pair of Irish Setter boots!

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Fueled up? Yes. Dog in truck? Uh huh. Ammo purchased? Yep (ouch!). Must be time for the second leg of the Awesome Upland Road Trip. We’ll be making TV shows across the West, for next season’s Wingshooting USA.

New friends and old, some fresh scenery, and lots of birds are some of the highlights of this trip, which starts at Double Barrel Ranch near Spokane, Wash. Ron Olmstead is a sensitive dog trainer and great host and this is a repeat visit (we made some Cast & Blast episodes there about five years ago). Strong dog work (except when Buddy’s on the ground) is a given on the rolling hills and coulees of eastern Washington

From Spokane we vector toward Havre, Montana and a new outfit, Sage Safaris … interesting concept for an upland hunting operation. Sara and Jake have outfitted their place a la’ luxury African safari camps – floored tents, real beds, wood stoves, etc. Should be interesting.

Dog is my co-pilot: Buddy always wears his seat belt.

Dog is my co-pilot: Buddy always wears his seat belt.

From Montana we head to beautiful downtown Mott, North Dakota. It’s been on my list since a friend here in town bought a place there just for pheasant hunting. We’ll be just down the road from Larry (there aren’t that many in Mott), at Tailfeather Inn, and hunting ringnecks and a few sharptails on nearby farms. Tailfeather promises an interesting stay: part of it is a restored convent (no smart remarks you former altar boys). Looks like the bird numbers are strong in this part of North Dakota, so we are pumped! Thanks to everyone at North Dakota’s tourism department for logistical support, especially Mark Zimmerman.

Then, it’s back to my favorite state, South Dakota. Ever had this thought? If there was a Nordstrom nearby, I’d try convincing my wife to move there! I’m hunting near Aberdeen, where I’ll help out at the Camp Gilbert Celebrity Hunt there, raising money for that great operation that supports kids with diabetes.

If they’re not sick of me and the crew after the celeb hunt, we will hunt the area for a couple more days, basing out of Rivett Refuge Preserve. Trees, water, sounds like a good time.

And in what’s becoming an Awesome Upland Road Trip tradition, we conclude again at Ravenwood Lodge near Topeka, Kansas. Ken and Bev Corbet run a beautiful place, full of history and incredible habitat. It’s like a tailor-made hunting amusement park, with a little of everything plus sporting clays! Want a preview? Go here and see some snaps and a report from last year.

Watch for the rig, give a honk or stop by and say hello! And safe travels on your own Awesome Upland Road Trip. Let the dog ride up front.

[Thanks to road trip sponsors National Shooting Sports Foundation and www.wingshootingusa.org, TriTronics, Irish Setter and Black’s Wing & Clay Waterfowl.] Speaking of which, leave a comment and you might win a pair of Irish Setter boots and hunting jacket!

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Scott & Buddy shooting the "Buddy & Me" segment for the new TV show

Shooting the "Buddy & Me" segment for the new TV show

[Before you read on, help out your favorite cause by voting NOW at these sites:

www.wingshootingusa.org … Take one of your kids hunting on the show next season. Click on the “Win a Shot on the Show” icon.

www.blackswingandclay.com … Cash for your conservation group, Cabela’s gear for you! Click on the “Hot Dog” icon.

www.nativedogfood.com … a TON of food for hunting dog rescue club. Click on the “”Win a Ton” icon in the upper left corner.]

Now, where were we?

The chance to support conservation groups, hunting dogs and youth are part of the new “Wingshooting USA” television series, which debuted Wed. Sept. 30 at 7:30 p.m. and Thursday 9:30 p.m. (East) on In Country TV (Dish Network Channel 230). The program launches on Sportsman Channel (DirecTV Channel 605) Saturday Oct. 3 at 11 p.m. (East).

Here are early online comments as the first broadcast aired …

Think you have a winner on your hands Scott- impressive- focus was on the dogs and not the advertising – Shadow

I liked it and will be watching it in the future – Big Dave

Watching it now. So far it looks great !! Sadie_Marie

Producer/host Scott Linden surveyed hundreds of bird hunters and hunting dog owners to create what he calls “a good show that does good.” Highly educational and interactive, the program, sponsored by the National Shooting Sports Foundation, offers viewers multiple chances to vote a la’ “American Idol” on everything from favorite dog breeds to a “most valuable dog” in each episode. They can also enter to “win a shot on the show” for a viewer and child at NSSF’s website, www.wingshootingusa.org.  Also featured is Linden’s popular “Buddy & Me” training feature, where he learns as much as his dog does.

Highest vote-getters mean cash awards for one conservation group, a ton of Native performance dog food for breed rescue clubs, and merchandise prizes for viewers. A list of over two dozen beneficiary groups includes: American Kennel Club, North American Grouse Partnership, SCI’s American Wilderness Leadership School, Pheasants Forever and breed rescue groups for virtually every hunting dog, among others.

Visit our sponsors:

www.wingshootingusa.org                      www.happyjack.com

www.espamerica.com                               www.cabelas.com

www.nativedogfood.com                        www.tritronics.com

www.rossyoung.com                                www.travelsd.com

www.blackswingandclay.com               www.ravenwoodlodge.com

www.treoranches.com

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LEAVING ELLENSBURG, Wash.: What does it mean when the clearest shot you have all day at a chukar is punctuated by a bee sting on your arm as you’re swinging on the bird?

I guess it could have been worse: I hit the bird, we got a beautiful retrieve, and camera operators Tad Newberry and Lynn Berland both got their shots. The swelling hasn’t gone down, but I’m not worried … yet … about the arm. And memories of the rest of the morning should keep me distracted.

Cooke Canyon Hunt Club is nestled in the hills along the edge of the valley that contains (most years) the Yakima River. Excellent hosts Doug and Alice Burnette were kind enough to invites us back and I was glad to accept. Doug’s dog training skills once again ensured an enjoyable and educational hunt on preserve chukars and pheasants as well as a few wild birds.

Weather was hot and dry, portending a short day and careful scrutiny of the dogs’ every move toward shade or water. True to form and certainly justifiable, jaegermeister Doug called it a day the moment one pointer laid down in the puddle of shadow surrounding a bitterbrush. It was hot.

Before that, we watched English Setters, Pointers, a shorthair and even Buddy track, stalk, point, relocate on, and retrieve (usually) some of the wiliest preserve birds I’ve encountered. Case in point: setter Jasper (royal stud dog and ruler of the Cooke Canyon kennel – and house) slams a point along an irrigation canal. The “back” by shorthair Elsa is upwind, until we figure the bird had already ran/waded up the ditch beyond both. A couple relocates including one point in the water capped a long chase and flown bird that fell to Doug’s gun.

Thanks to everyone in Ellensburg for your hospitality!

PS: ever wondered what a dog really sees in the field? Here’s some raw footage from our new high-def “Buddy cam.”

PPS: The Irish Setter giveaway is back, so leave a comment – even just a plea to be selected – and you could win a pair as well as a new hunting jacket.

Thanks to all the Awesome Upland Road Trip sponsors: TriTronics, Black’s Wing & Clay Waterfowl directory, National Shooting Sports Foundation and www.wingshootingusa.org, and Irish Setter.

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