Hunting

2012-13 WMA Forecast

Did you know when mast-producing trees are stressed, as they are in a drought, they produce a bumper crop of acorns?

Or that a wildlife management area in Louisiana is devoted exclusively to youth hunting and youth hunting education only?

Did you know one 19,000-plus-acre WMA is bordered by a 100,000-plus-acre national wildlife refuge, which combined gives deer hunters optimum opportunities to hunt and kill deer — some large animals, at that — on the vast public bottomland hardwood region? […]

Fishing

What the heck is trolling motor navigation?

A July press release from Johnson Outdoors Marine Electronics begins, “Continuing the evolution of GPS trolling-motor navigation, Minn Kota’s i-Pilot Link utilizes GPS technology and ethernet connectivity to achieve new levels of boat control.”

Having attended a webinar on this new system, I was already thinking about how much that opening sentence is going to mean to fishermen. […]

General

Hideout guns

A group of firearms instructors for the sheriff’s office was standing around, waiting for a meeting to begin. One of the guys, the best pistol shooter among that relatively talented group, pulled a little North American Arms .22 Magnum revolver out of his pocket, and began showing it around. […]

Inshore Fishing

Blood on the Border: Tips for catching big speckled trout on the lower Sabine River

No Man’s Land!

It has a romantic ring to it.

Most people who can associate it with anything do so with World War I, when it was used to describe the land between the trenches of the opposing armies in Europe. But before the term was ever used in the Great War, as it was then called, it was used in Louisiana.

When the United States made the Louisiana Purchase, both of its borders with Spain were unclear. What are now the Florida Parishes were claimed by Spanish-held Florida. The western boundary was disputed by Spanish Mexico. […]

Inshore Fishing

Fly-Yaking

In New Orleans, when two things compliment each other we say they go together “like red beans and rice.”

Just like that popular local staple, you can’t beat the combination of a fly rod and a kayak. […]

Inshore Fishing

Louisiana Fly Fishing Records

Want to be in the record books? While some species boast impressive weights, others are more modest and can be topped. The Louisiana Outdoor Writers Association is the keeper of all Louisiana fishing records. Here are a few of the First-place LA state fly fishing records: […]

Deer Hunting

Deer camera techniques

My excitement level is now building to a fever pitch as I plot and plan strategies for the soon-to-begin deer season.

Trail camera photos have been rolling in from my hunting property for a number of weeks, giving me a really good idea about the overall condition and demographics of my resident deer population. My current preseason trail-camera efforts are geared more toward knowing, deer wise, what exactly is out there. […]

Promote

In Plain Sight: Tips for duck hunting from layout boats

You hear it all the time when it comes to duck blind concealment: Low profile is key.

After all, the marshes of South Louisiana aren’t exactly known for stands of trees providing habitat conducive to hiding. Our marshes are dominated by cord grasses standing a towering 2 or 3 feet above the muck, depending on when the last hurricane visited.

If you’re lucky, there might be a patch of Roseau cane near your favorite pond, but that is usually more exception than norm.

And it seems that birds most often use ponds that inconveniently offer minimal cover to the hunter in pursuit.

That said, I have to chuckle when chasing summer redfish in the marsh and I come across blind after blind towering over the surrounding landscape. You know the ones I’m referring to: Just look out the window on your next flight out of Louis Armstrong New Orleans International. […]

Deer Hunting

A new season but the game is the same

If you didn’t like the 2011 deer season you probably will not like the 2012 season.

My wife and I spent the last week of July on the property at Camp David. It rained one afternoon and around 6 p.m. I made a round looking for the wild and elusive feral hog. I had killed five already and was looking for more pork for the freezer, but they did not want to come out and play. I deliberately walked the edge of a new plot I had planted with some late peas, sunflowers and sorghum looking for tracks but found none. […]

Inshore Fishing

Not your typical creature bait

Just look at those rows and rows and rows of soft-plastic creature baits, the success story of the 21st century, on the shelves at the main outlets and the local fishing tackle shops. It can be a mind-boggling challenge to pick up the right one(s).

How’s a man, or woman, to choose one that does the job — which is to get a bass to open its mouth and chomp on it? […]

Bass Fishing

Made in the Shade: Catch more bass by fishing the shade

My Lucky Craft Sammy topwater landed less than its length from the base of a cypress tree. I mindlessly snapped it back and forth a couple times to impart that lazy walk-the-dog action that big bass just can’t seem to ignore.

At 7:30 in the morning, my shirt was already soaked with sweat, so I diverted my attention away from my Sammy sitting lifelessly on the surface in an effort to see if there was any shade we could get under.

The slurping sound hardly registered in my mind, so when I turned around to walk my Sammy again, I was surprised to find that it was nowhere to be found. […]

Hunting

Ameristep Chair Blind

The new Ameristep Magnum Tent Chair Blind is compact, lightweight, durable and was designed with the archery hunter in mind. It is large enough to comfortably shoot a bow but can also be used for gun hunting. The Chair Blind has a large front zippered window for unobstructed shooting and maximum visibility. It can also be set up and taken down in less than 10 seconds. […]

Hunting

Sherburne WMA wildlife survived great flood

Remarkable resilience best describes Sherburne Wildlife Management Area, the huge tract of public acreage in the upper part of the Atchafalaya Basin that was subjected to both natural and man-made flooding in the spring and early summer of 2011. […]

Fly Lines

Making the Dog Rabid

I’ve been blessed to have known some of the greatest fly tiers of the modern era. Folks like George Harvey, Polly Rosborough, Mike Verduin, Chris Helms, Gary LaFontaine to name just a very few.

So take my word when I say that Kirk Dietrich ranks among the best. […]