Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Ruffed Grouse Hunt Hibbing MN 10.3.23

 


We got out early before the wind and heat hit again today.  We went north of Hibbing MN.  I haven’t had a chance to hunt this area in two years.  I was a little bit surprised to have trucks parked in the first two spots that we went to.  I guess the reports of good bird numbers are bringing out the hunters even on hot weekdays.

I put the 11 year old Tasha down at the first spot that we could hunt at.  It is a little bit older than what I would think of as prime but within a 100 yards of starting she went on point and I was able to take the bird with one shot.  It was in thinner cover than what we have been moving birds out of.  After another 1/2 hour we were ready to turn around and head back to the truck and she started to work scent and this one held for a moment before flushing close to the trail.  I was able to also take this one.  On the way back we had a bumped bird and I did not connect on it.

Tasha got in just over an hour at 70 degrees and we moved 3 birds and took two.

The second spot was Val’s and this one looked better.  Unfortunately we had a tailwind to start and had two bumped birds on the way out.  We turned around at the 45 minute mark.  I wasn’t too optimistic that we would see anything since we had just hunted the trail.  Val ended up working wider than on the way out and got a point within 10 minutes.  She was 70 yards off the trail and I was a little surprised that the bird was still holding for her.  I was able to take her on the flush and Val made the retrieve.  We got a second point about 200 yards short of the truck and it was also near the trail and I had another day shot.

We ended the day as it was creeping into the high 70s and the wind was also picking up.  We didn’t move any woodcock today, but on the plus side most of the shots were the easiest that we’ve had so far this season.

 
 

2 ​ 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Grouse Hunting Dogs: The 10 Best Breeds

Six pointing breeds and four flushers round out our picks. Now let the fur fly…

Grouse hunters are a notoriously opinionated bunch. Put more than two of them in the same room and sure as sunrise they’ll find something to disagree about. More likely, they’ll find lots to disagree about. The best shotguns are a bone of endless contention. But if you really want to see the fur fly, stand up in a roomful of grouse hunters and say, “When it comes to grouse hunting dogs, I think breed _____ is the best.” Before you do, identify the closest exit, because objects will be thrown at you.

Today, that’s all changed. Flushing dogs now enjoy a large and enthusiastic following, the Continental breeds are an established force, and the Irishman and the Gordon have made heroic comebacks as grouse hunting dogs. It isn’t that the lights of the pointer and the English setter have dimmed; it’s just that they are no longer the only stars in the sky. William Harnden Foster wouldn’t know what to make of it.

To be sure that you do know what to make of it when it comes time to choose your next pup, here, in no particular order, are snapshots of the top 10 best grouse hunting dogs, 21st century style.

1. English Setter: The Traditional Grouse Dog


 

 

 

 

 

This breed remains the classic choice for traditional-minded grouse hunters—although the words “English setter grouse dog” can connote very different animals depending on who’s listening. There are low-to-the-ground, wispily feathered 35-pound English setters that smoke through the woods like missiles, and tall, extravagantly coated 70-pounders who go about their business with the unhurried formality of Downton Abbey butlers. The former are generally known as the field-trial type, the latter as the Ryman/Old Hemlock type. The legendary Tom Prawdzik of Clare, Michigan, believed that an English setter somewhere between those extremes—wide-ranging, but with an easy, all-day gait—was the most “efficient” dog for ruffed grouse hunting. He had 50 years of meticulously kept records to back up that opinion too.

2. Gordon Setter: The Handsomest Grouse Dog

Perhaps the handsomest of all the sporting breeds, the “black-and-tan” gets its name from the fourth Duke of Gordon, the Scottish laird who stabilized the breed’s type in the early 19th century. A steady, level-headed worker who operates at close range and rarely screws up, the Gordon was a great favorite among market hunters—about the best recommendation possible if your aim is to put birds in the bag. But for many years, as bird-dog fashion changed and the Gordon’s breeding was increasingly co-opted by the show crowd (the same fate that befell the Irish setter), sportsmen who’d have loved to hunt grouse with a Gordon had a devil of a time finding one that could hunt. Thankfully, the hunting Gordon is back, and while you won’t find one behind every bush, they’re out there if you make the effort to look.

3. Pointer: The Speedster

No breed elicits stronger opinions than the pointer. As the saying goes, there are really just two kinds of bird-dog people: those who think pointers are the only dogs worth feeding, and those who are scared to death of them. The way I look at it, the pointer is the Formula One racecar of the pointing-dog set: capable of jaw-dropping performance in the hands of those who know what they’re doing, and a wreck waiting to happen in the hands of those who don’t. Both Burton Spiller and William Harnden Foster, two of the most hallowed figures in the lore and literature of grouse hunting, were diehard pointer men. The greatest pointer man of all, Robert G. Wehle of Elhew Kennels fame, was a grouse hunter, and it’s no coincidence that the overwhelming majority of pointers used to chase ruffs boast a preponderance of Elhew blood.

See all 10 breeds and the complete Field and Stream article

 

 

 


Sunday, July 16, 2023

For Sale Selling my Garmin 430 Astro Bundle - 430 Handheld + DC 50 Collar + Fenix 3 Watch

Selling my Astro bundle.... I got a 300i system for my birthday

This is a Garmin 430 Astro Bundle - 430 Handheld + DC 50 Collar + Fenix 3 Watch
It is the perfect bundle for your hunting adventures.
The 430 handheld unit has always had a screen protector on it.  Includes a NEW antennae + the extra long distance antennae.  It is already paired to the DC 50 collar and the Fenix watch so all you will have to do is to calibrate the compass for your area.  The DC 50 collar is in great shape and includes a spare antennae as well as the charging clip.  The Fenix 3 watch includes a bright green band so you can easily find it as well as the charging clip.
Hunting with the GPS system and the synced Fenix watch makes the hunt more enjoyable.




 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Handheld Tracking System for Sporting Dogs

  • Track up to 20 dogs¹ at a time, with ranges up to 9 miles using compatible Garmin dog collars (sold separately)
  • 2.5-second update rate provides faster location tracking when dogs are on the run
  • GPS and GLONASS reception enables better satellite tracking in challenging environments than GPS alone
  • Comes with preloaded TOPO U.S 100K mapping; compatible with Garmin HuntView™ cards
  • Hunt Metrics data helps analyze your dogs’ hunting patterns and behaviors; view distance traveled, time afield and more

Astro

With faster 2.5-second location updates and the capacity to follow up to 20 dogs¹, Astro 430 is a handheld powerhouse of dog-tracking performance. Intuitive and easy to use, the Astro 430 handheld features a vibrant 2.6" color display, preloaded TOPO U.S. 100K mapping, an optional in-unit rechargeable battery and Hunt Metrics data to help analyze your dogs’ tracking habits in the field, so you can know how to train more effectively.

Free Shipping

Astro

Follow Your Dog's Every Move

Using a compatible Garmin dog collar (sold separately) to transmit each dog’s location as often as every 2.5 seconds, Astro 430 is quick to pinpoint the track they’re following — even when they’re on the run. On the Astro handheld's bright, crisp display, you can see your dog’s current location and a trail of where he’s been. You also can switch over to the Dog Track page to view a compass pointing to your dog’s location. For help in keeping the big picture in sight when tracking multiple dogs, it’s easy to auto zoom the map page, so all dogs can be seen on the display at any time. Dogs that are too far away to fit on the map’s current zoom scale can be notated on the display’s margin in the direction of the dog’s location. To reduce visual clutter on the map, you can toggle between “show all,” “show some” and “show none” — selecting the duration that each dog’s track is viewable on the display. You can also share a dog’s track code so another person can view your dog’s location on their unit’s map, along with the dog tracking compass. Further, by sharing a dog’s control code, you can allow another person to configure and control your dog’s on-collar device.

Astro

See More Detail with Additional Mapping

Astro 430 features a microSD™ card slot that allows you to load even more mapping options, such as TOPO U.S. 24K and HuntView maps (sold separately). You also can opt for City Navigator® NT map data that gives you turn-by-turn driving directions on roads. The Astro handheld’s mapping depicts important nearby geographical features and enables you to see if your dog has crossed a creek or is nearing a dangerous roadway.

Astro 430 is also compatible with Garmin Custom Maps, free software that transforms paper and electronic maps into downloadable maps for your device.

Astro

Track with Hunt Metrics Data

Sophisticated Hunt Metrics help monitor your dog’s hunting patterns and behaviors to optimize your training opportunities. You can see your dog's times, distances traveled and overall scores. Plus, the Astro 430 will also capture the number of times during the hunt when an “on point” or “treed” event was indicated.

Astro

Count Your Coveys

After you’ve tracked down your quarry, mark the exact spot with Astro handheld’s Covey Counter™, a special waypoint that shows the exact location, time of day and elevation where you found your prey as well as the number of birds you flushed and took from that location. Astro lets you save other special waypoints, such as “Truck” and “Lodge,” so you can easily find your way back to these locations at the end of the hunt. Astro also offers special waypoint icons to represent food plots, tree stands and other hunting-related points.

Astro

Share Wirelessly

With an expanded ecosystem of wireless connectivity options, Astro 430 can support unit-to-unit data transfer with a variety of compatible Garmin devices. For example, the rugged Tread® off-road powersport navigator or Garmin DriveTrack™ 71 car navigator (each sold separately) can receive and display dog positions on its moving map — with topographic or satellite image views — showing navigation cues to your dog’s current location. Likewise, fēnix® series watches can receive dog status updates and alerts for viewing at a glance on your wrist. Also, while you’re in the field, Astro 430 lets you link and share wirelessly with your buddies’ compatible devices, such as the Oregon® handheld, Montana® handheld, GPSMAP® 64 chartplotter or other ANT+® enabled devices, to help coordinate hunt logistics on the go.

Turn Your Computer Into a BaseStation for Tracking Dogs

Load your laptop with BaseStation software to turn it into a field control center for tracking multiple dogs (equipped with compatible Garmin dog collars²). View real-time GPS information on the larger display of your computer, making it ideal for canine search and rescue teams. And because it’s GPS and GLONASS capable, you'll get tracking, even where Internet and cellphone service isn’t available.

Astro

Tough, Water-resistant, Long-Lasting

Like all Garmin outdoor products, Astro 430 is designed to be effective, easy to use, reliable and rugged enough to withstand all the blows, bumps and sloppy conditions of training and hunting. The handheld unit is water-resistant to IPX7, and it can be powered with standard AA batteries — or it’s optionally available with a long-lasting NiMH battery pack that’s rechargeable in the unit. What’s more, if you ever drop or misplace your Astro 430 in the field, the high-visibility orange case makes it easy to track down.

DC 50 Collar

Rugged, All-weather Collar for Astro

  • High-sensitivity, top-mounted GPS/GLONASS receiver
  • Braided stainless steel VHF antenna
  • 26–54 hour battery life
  • Innovative bark detection technology
  • Dog position updates every 5, 10, 30 or 120 seconds

This rugged, water resistant all-weather collar features a high-sensitivity, top-mounted GPS and GLONASS-enabled receiver that works with the Garmin Astro® 320 and Astro 430 handheld dog devices¹. The DC™ 50 can track additional satellites using a combined GPS and GLONASS system, which will locate your dog more quickly and maintain location even in heavy tree cover or deep canyons.

A braided steel VHF antenna adds reliability and achieves a range of up to 9 miles, depending on the terrain. And the battery lasts 26 to 54 hours, depending on the update rate. Its innovative bark detection technology alerts you if your dog is barking even beyond audible range.

With additional DC 50 transmitters (sold separately), you can track up to 10 dogs simultaneously with one Astro 320, or up to 20 dogs simultaneously with one Astro 430. The DC 50 has a replaceable collar strap (sold separately) in a variety of colors. Dog position can be set to update every 5, 10, 30 or 120 seconds. It also features a PIN-based Collar Lock feature to prevent unauthorized persons from tracking your dog.

Fenix 3 Watch

Uncompromising Multisport Training GPS Watch

  • Omni-directional EXO™ stainless steel antenna, with GPS/GLONASS satellite reception, has the ability to track in more challenging environments than GPS alone
  • 1.2-inch sunlight readable Garmin Chroma Display™
  • Fitness training features like VO2 Max and Recovery Advisor (when used with a heart rate monitor¹)
  • Outdoor navigation features like 3-axis compass, altimeter and barometer, TracBack and Sight’n Go
  • Connect IQ™ compatibility for customized apps, widgets, watch faces and data fields
  • Battery life: up to 20 hours in GPS training mode; up to 6 weeks in watch mode
fēnix 3

fēnix 3 is the rugged, capable and smart multisport training GPS watch. With feature sets for fitness training plus feature sets for outdoor navigation, fēnix 3 is ready for any training activity and competition. Access to the Connect IQ platform allows customization of watch faces, data fields, widgets and activities. And, fēnix 3 is a thin, light multisport training GPS that won’t slow you down whether for training or every day use.

Serious Style That Stands Up to the Roughest Conditions

fēnix 3 style

fēnix 3 is available in 3 bold models: gray with high-strength, scratch resistant, crystal and black band; silver with red band; and the premium sapphire model with a stainless steel band and sapphire lens. Each watch features a protective stainless steel bezel and buttons, and reinforced housing for extra durability. A sunlight-visible high-resolution color Garmin Chroma Display with LED backlight lets you access your data in any light. fēnix 3 is water rated 100 meters and has a battery life of up to 50 hours in UltraTrac™ battery saver mode, 16 hours in GPS mode and up to 3 months in watch mode (all depending on settings).

Advanced Fitness Metrics

fēnix 3 is packed with training features to tell you about your form and fitness. The first is the VO2 max estimator. When used with a heart rate monitor¹, fēnix 3 crunches data, including your running speed, beats per minute and heart rate variability to estimate the maximum volume of oxygen you can consume per minute. Track changes to your VO2 max to see your fitness gains and to compare with your peers. Other fitness metrics include recovery advisor with a recovery timer and recovery check, plus a Race Predictor, which estimates your ideal finish time based on your current VO2 max number.

fēnix 3 altimeter

Running Dynamics Features

fēnix 3 incorporates sophisticated Garmin running watch feedback on your running form by reporting multiple metrics. When used with the HRM-Run monitor¹, fēnix 3 reports your cadence, vertical oscillation and ground contact time. These metrics are called running dynamics, and they affect your running economy.

Swim Profile and Ski/Board Mode

fēnix 3 activity listThe fēnix 3 isn’t just for running; special feature sets help swim training and skiing too. Borrowing from the Garmin Swim™, fēnix 3 tracks your distance, pace, stroke count and more. You just tell fēnix 3 the size of the pool you’re swimming in and begin your workout. Ski/Board mode puts speed, distance, vertical drop and an automatic run counter (with Auto Pause for the lift line) and more at your fingertips. You can even use your fēnix 3 as a glove-friendly remote, via ANT+®, for the VIRB® and VIRB Elite action cameras.

Navigate Your Way

No other navigator GPS plus ABC (altimeter, barometer and compass) wristwatch offers you the combined training functions and our leading GPS technology. fēnix 3 provides comprehensive navigation and tracking functionalities to guide you on and off the beaten track. Its built-in sensors provide information on heading, elevation and weather changes.

It records a GPS track log creating a “bread crumb trail” as you move. It also allows you to mark locations, such as a start/finish line, course checkpoint, or a campsite, vehicle or other point of interest. With fēnix 3, you can create and follow courses, mark up to 1,000 locations and store up to 10,000 track points and navigate to them.

Plan trips and share adventures with friends and family using BaseCamp™.

Altimeter, Barometer and Compass

fēnix 3 altimeter

fēnix 3 is equipped with ABC sensors to provide relevant real-time information. The built-in altimeter provides elevation data to accurately monitor ascent and descent, while the barometer can be used to predict weather changes by showing short-term trends in air pressure. The 3-axis electronic compass keeps your bearing whether you’re moving or not.

fēnix 3 auto-calibrates its ABC sensors using its GPS receiver and also auto sets the time based on location. For an extremely accurate temperature reading, pair it with our tempe™ external temperature sensor.

Custom Apps and Watch Faces

Personalize fēnix 3 with free downloads from our Connect IQ store. You can customize your watch face, add data fields and get apps and widgets that provide information at a glance.

Stay Connected

fēnix 3 notifications

Smart notifications let you receive emails, texts and alerts right on your watch, even if you're on the trail. fēnix 3 receives the wireless signal from a compatible iPhone® 4s (or newer) or Android™ smartphone² and lets you know you have a message, displaying the text on its own screen whenever you’re ready to read it.

Wear Your Personality on Your Sleeve

Download the free Garmin Face It watch face app to customize your device with any photo from your smartphone. Just download the app, choose an image from your photo library, adjust the style for time and set it as your watch’s face. Whether it’s a scenic view from your last hike or a picture of your new puppy, with Garmin you can add personality to your watch that’s uniquely you.

¹Heart rate monitors and HRM-run, sold separately.
²When paired with a compatible smartphone
Device wear and care

The Bluetooth word mark and logos are registered trademarks owned by Bluetooth SIG, INC. iPhone and App Store are trademarks of Apple Inc. Android and Google Play are trademarks of Google Inc.

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Coyote Incident While Dog Training

 










 

 

Well that was interesting and not in a good way… everyone is ok though.  I was running the dogs out at Kelly Farms ( where I train the dogs )this morning.  The workout was going well even though it was warm.. we got to the spot where we were going to turn around and start to work back when Val went on point and I something small in front of her.  I thought she was pointing a fawn and then she went in like she was going to play with it and I heard yipping.. couldn’t figure out what it was until I heard more and louder yipping.. it was a pup coyote and 2 adults were going in to save it.  I ran in and tried to scare them off.. they were biting at Val’s rear side and she was growling back.. Tasha came in to help and it was getting to be a cluster… I grabbed both dogs by the collars and tried to drag them away but the coyotes kept coming in.. I threw my started pistol at the closest one and missed.. ( i had already fired my blanks at birds.. )  I got one of the short leads that I carry thru Tasha’s collar and also clamped it onto Val.. I was still hollering at the yotes….  and they were still right next to us.. I ended up getting out the 2nd lead which has a big brass connector and started to swing it at them.. they backed up a foot.. it probably took us 10+ minutes to move a few feet.  A 3rd yote had come close but hadn’t come in.. we moved a few more feet and one of the yotes moved back.. the main one kept growling and nipping at us… I finally got the dogs under a bit on control and started to move but the more aggressive one never was more than three feet away and would try to slip in.. I was hollering at it and trying to appear big.  It took us quite awhile to get back to the truck and get the dogs loaded.. I took them to bald eagle lake to wash them and check them over… it doesn’t seem like anyone is injured… I won’t train in that part of the farm again but will maybe start to carry a shotgun along with a training pistol...

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Gunner® Releases Kids Snack Crate

Gunner® Releases Kids Snack Crate

 


Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Keeping the dogs sane when it is too cold for them to hang outside

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By the time this cold snap ends here in Minnesota we will have had 10 days where the weather has barely broken above zero and if I just let the dogs hang out inside with us all day for the duration all of us will get on each other’s nerves. So to keep us all from going goofy I put them in their neoprene vests and dog booties and take them for their walks. The booties are mostly to keep their feet dry. The city puts chemicals on the streets to try to keep them clear and this causes the snow and ice to melt and when it gets on their paws it freezes later and causes issues.

Saturday, January 30, 2021

My Dog Hates Me

 

Tasha hates me... On Tuesday she had surgery to remove a couple of masses so now she has to wear the Cone Of Shame for 2 weeks...