North Carolinian hunters start pursuing deer today in the Eastern, Central and Northwestern zones as the 2013 Archery season has opened up in those zones, with the Western zone opening up on Monday. I'll be heading out for my first hunt of the year this afternoon, off to a Central zone gameland you've heard me mention many times before known as Alcoa. I just finished getting all the final details put together in the previous few days so I can just grab my stuff and go when I pull up to the parking area, so bear with me in the following video as I go over what I pack into the woods. Enjoy!
This Spring and Summer saw me going through my hunting clothes and equipment and selling a bunch of stuff to downsize on things, upgrade some items and pass on little used items to someone that would actually put them to use. My initial plan was to just upgrade some video equipment, so I sold my camera arm and one of my fluid heads. I've got a Muddy Outfitter Arm (review coming sometime during the season) waiting to be delivered at the moment so that portion of the initial plan is coming to fruition, however I have yet to find a deal on a fluid head I want so the one 701 HDV I kept will be pulling double duty on the camera arm and tripod this year. I also decided to hold-off on getting a portable voice recorder like the Zoom H1 to use for recording audio when using my Go Pro or Canon G15, unless there is a deal I just can't pass up. Unfortunately for my bank account and much to the dismay of my wife, that initial video equipment upgrade turned into an overhaul of my hunting clothing and storage for my gear. Camofire and Cabela's Bargain Cave have been my friend this pre-season as I have bought lightweight mesh pants, merino wool and liner socks, hats and a quarter-zip while updating my camo clothing. On the storage side of things, I snagged two Badlands Camera Cases to better organize my equipment and make it easier carrying it into the woods as I can now not be bothered with stuffing my larger camcorder case into my Eberlestock. Instead, I can either carry it around my waist like a fanny pack, strap it to my pack at one of the many lashing points or even slide the slimmer camera case into one of the side tubes on my pack. The design of the case also will make getting setup after I have the camera arm in place much easier on me. I also purchased a Badlands Adder duffel bag. It's made out of a PVC material (which is taking me a while to clear the distinctive smell out of it) so I can throw it in the back of my truck and not worry too much about the elements to and from where I will be hunting. This will also help keep the clothing and/or gear I store in it relatively free from outside odors. I'm sure I'll snag another item or two during season, possibly another PVC duffel so I can stop using the big plastic containers to store my hunting items in since they take up so much space in the man cave's closet. If I do, expect some reviews. Til then, remember to stay safe while out there enjoying the great outdoors!
As I said awhile back I was going to send out my BPS trigger to have some work done on it because it was just too heavy! I estimated it was close to 7 pounds which in my mind is just to much; I prefer a much lighter trigger and many of my other guns have one so the BPS was just a bear to shoot.
I found Precision Sports and had heard of some good reviews concerning them so I decided to send the trigger to them. After mailing out a $70 check along with my trigger assembly, I had my trigger back in about 10 days. I got the trigger assembly back into the gun and did some dry firing with a snap cap and boy oh boy is the new trigger great! I emailed the gun smith and asked him what the trigger was before and after. He said that it came in at around 8 lbs and when he sent it back it was 3 lbs and crisp! Let me say, I have to agree with him as the trigger is very crisp.
I'm very impressed with the work and it came at a great price, so ff you have any trigger needs or other gun work needs please contact Precision Sports on their website or give them a call (all of their contact information is on the website).
If anyone has any questions or troubles getting the trigger assembly in or out see my previous posts with some linked videos or send us an email and I can walk you through the steps!
Thanks again Precision Sports!!!
A trolling charm for many species of fish!
The J-Plug has long been one of my favorite trolling lures. This plug comes in multiple color combinations (that can be found here) as well as come in three different varieties: Rattling, lighted and everglow, which gives you a lure for every kind of fishing you can think of from daytime to nighttime trolling. They also come in lengths from 4 inches to 5 1/2 inches. They are unique in a couple of ways:
1) They have a very cool darting action that really catches the attention of a variety of fish. I've caught bass, trout and even Northern Pike on these plugs.
2) Also, the lure has a hook harness that I have not seen with other lures. These harnesses usually have two treble hooks and thread through the nose of the lure where they can be attached to a swivel or tired directly to the line.
I've usually fished these in combination with a Lurh Jensen Dipsy Diver, which I'll detail below.
These Dipsy Divers are really a very nifty gadget! They give any fisherman the ability to fish lures including J-Plugs and spoons at a variety of depths very easily! You can fish from just below the service to the bottom by varying the size of the diver and the amount of line you let out. You can also vary the angle of dive to have these "plane" out to one side or the other. These divers can be found at Bass Pro and Cabelas, just do a search for 'Dipsy Diver' and you'll see the variety that is available. The larger 4-7/8" divers will go to about 100 feet and the smaller 2-1/4" will dive to about 20 feet. I use the following depth chart as a guide. Oh, did I mention that these come in different colors as well and can be matched to the water color in order to act as an attractant as well? Not everyone has the money to invest in down riggers and this gives you an easy and budget friendly way to troll, with prices ranging from $9 - $15.
The setup is simple. You'll want to use a sturdy trolling rod and reel such as the following Dipsy Diver Model from Cabelas. I usually use 20lb test mono on the main line that will be tied from the rod to the Dipsy Diver, just as you would tie a lure to the end of your line. You then just need to add a leader to the back of the diver, I usually use 15 lb test but this can vary depending on the size and type of fish you are going after. To the other end of the leader you tie your lure, such as the J-Plug I detailed above.
Once you have your rig set up, you are ready to hit the water and do some fishing! The only other note I have is that there is a release, much like that of a down rigger. When trolling, your rod will be bent quite a bit (this is normal due to the tension the diver applies); once a fish bites and is on the line, the added weight and fight of the fish will "throw" the release and the Dipsy Diver will stop diving and you can easily fight your fish to the surface. If you need to check your line for weeds, etc while trolling, you can give a good tug (just like you were setting the hook on a fish) to "throw" the release manually. This will allow you to retrieve the diver rig. Don't try to reel in the diver without doing this as it will be quite difficult!
If you've used either of these, please let us know of your success stories as we would love to hear what color combinations you favor!
- Paul Nicolucci
Just wanted to let everyone, especially those who hike, climb, bike or paddle, know that REI is having a big anniversary sale right now. It started yesterday and runs until May 30th. There are some great deals to be found (I know I am eying their Half Dome 2 tent since it is being offered for $45 less than usual) and you'll get an additional 20% off one item if you are an REI Co-Op member. So check them out if you need a new tent like me. Or hiking boots. Or sleeping bag. Or another Go Pro HD Hero. Or a new...well, you get the point.
Sometimes the great ideas that we have just need something to bring them to the forefront. The Inside Out team will be putting our talents to work and sharing our knowledge and love of the outdoors with anyone who wants to listen.
Curran's Outdoor Adventures
GoBlog (Get Outdoors)
Grants Blog (Growing Deer TV)
Hunt Like Your Hungry
inFOCUS (Campbell Cameras)
inMotion (Heartland Bowhunter)
Make It Happen Outdoors
Taking a Walk on the Wild Side
The Rivah Blog
The Will to Hunt
Wired to Hunt