Episode #20 – Deer Camp

This week, we bring you a special edition episode where Ken sits down with his brother-in-law Mike Kirby and talks about the Deer Camp tradition “up north” in the western Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Also tune in for this week’s Fishing Report brought to you by Mark Malevich of The Bait Shop!

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #19 – Round Table

This week, we bring you a special variety episode with shorter interviews across a range of topics. We start out with what we hope to be a weekly feature – a Michigan Fishing Report from Mark Malvich at The Bait Shop. Then, we move on to a discussion with Drew YoungeDyke and Alex Cerveniak from the Michigan Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers about a timely topic and call to action regarding ORV use on the Deward Tract and other public lands. Then we talk with Jeremy Nicklow about Dick Huvaere’s Richmond Buck Pole Contest.  We then get an update from Rich Benson and Tim Muir  with the Lake Saint Clair Walleye Association. Finally, we close things out with a great recipe!

Be sure to leave us your feedback on the new format. Also, please check into the information concerning the ORV use and public comments.

Products & Resources mentioned:

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #18 – Hunting Strategy With Alvin Sitkiewicz

Join us this week for a nice long chat sure to get the deer hunting juices working overtime. We are joined once again by Alvin Sitkiewicz of Michigan Gone Wild. We are talking deer hunting strategy and what makes him, his brother and his entire camp so successful on public ground.

Be sure to listen in as the peak of the hunting season is upon us!

In case you missed it, you can listen back to Alvin’s previous episode here.

Products & Resources mentioned:

Michigan Gone Wild

https://www.facebook.com/MichiganGoneWild/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5QOiKGBZp3A7B13n7ezMWA

Watch Wednesday Nights at 10:30pm EST on the Pursuit Channel and Tuesday Nights at 9pm EST on the Hunt Channel.

 

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #17 – Jamey Caldwell

One this episode, we a very cool chat with professional FLW tour angler Jamey Caldwell. Listen in as we discuss life on tour, Jamey’s past season, mental toughness, equipment, tips and much more!

Products & Resources mentioned:

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #16 – Kegan McCabe of Omega Longbows

On this week’s show we talk with traditional archer and bowyer of Omega Longbows, Kegan McCabe. We discuss how Kegan came to be a bowyer, his passion for creating longbows, common questions of those new to traditional archery and more. Traditional archery is a growing trend that doesn’t show signs of slowing down any time soon. Listen in and gain some knowledge of traditional bowhunting from someone who makes his living hand crafting high performance longbows! 

Products & Resources mentioned:

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #15 – Lake St. Clair Walleye Association

On this week’s show we are talking fishing and conservation of the resource that is the Walleye fishery here in the state of Michigan with the guys at the Lake St. Clair Walleye Association. Their club is very involved with the conservation side of fishing as well as getting the youth involved. Just an all around great organization that is very important here in the great state of Michigan!

 

Products & Resources mentioned:

 

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #14 – JT Kenney

On this episode of the Hunt2Fish podcast, we talk with BASS/FLW Tour Pro Fisherman JT Kenney .

Some highlights include:

  • Recap of JT’s Season
  • The advantage locals have over tour pros
  • JT’s whitetail season hopes
  • Introducing a young person to hunting
  • A few tips, tricks, and techniques
  • A technical snafu!
  • And much more!

Be sure to join us, as the deer opener is rapidly approaching!

Products & Resources mentioned:

 

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #13 – Saddle Hunting with Bobby Boswell of Aero Hunter

On this episode of the Hunt2Fish podcast, we talk with Bobby Boswell, pro-staff for Aero Hunter.

Some highlights include:

  • Bobby’s saddle hunting background
  • Benefits of Saddle Hunting
  • Hurdles to getting into saddle hunting
  • Climbing methods
  • Common mistakes, adjustments, tips and tricks for hunting from a saddle
  • The New Aero Hunter Kestrel
  • And much more!

Be sure to join us, as the deer opener is rapidly approaching!

Products & Resources mentioned:

 

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

Listen to the Podcast! (And don’t forget to leave us a review!)

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Episode #12 – Alvin Sitkiewicz of Michigan Gone Wild

On this episode of the Hunt2Fish podcast, we talk with Alvin Sitkiewicz of Michigan Gone Wild.

Some highlights include:

  • Background of Michigan Gone Wild
  • Thoughts on the outdoor industry
  • Elk Hunting
  • And more!

Be sure to join us, as the deer opener is rapidly approaching!

Products & Resources mentioned:

Michigan Gone Wild

https://www.facebook.com/MichiganGoneWild/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5QOiKGBZp3A7B13n7ezMWA

Watch Wednesday Nights at 10:30pm EST on the Pursuit Channel and Tuesday Nights at 9pm EST on the Hunt Channel.

 

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #11 – John Eberhart

On this episode of the Hunt2Fish podcast, we talk with the legendary John Eberhart, a premier Michigan whitetail bowhunter with 30 bucks in the Michigan record books and 19 Pope and Young bucks over his 53 years of hunting experience.

Some highlights include:

  • Post season scouting
  • Scouting public land
  • Differences in hunting different states
  • What it really means to get into remote areas
  • Primary scrape areas
  • Scent control
  • Hunting subordinate bucks and does
  • And much more!

Be sure to join us, as the deer opener is rapidly approaching!

Products & Resources mentioned:

Eberhart’s Whitetail Workshop

ScentLok

Aero Hunter Tree Saddles

SaddleHunter.com

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #10 – Cross Bone Outfitters

On this episode of the Hunt2Fish podcast, we talk with Chaz Hickcox, owner of Cross Bone Outfitters. Chaz is a United States Marine Corps veteran and well-respected fisherman who noticed a gap in the fishing industry that he wants “Break Barriers” and fill. 

Some highlights include:

  • The philosophy and unique offerings of crossboneoutfitters.com
  • Fishing
  • The World of Pro Staffing
  • Much, much more!

Be sure to join us, as the deer opener is rapidly approaching!

Products & Resources mentioned:

Cross Bone Outfitters

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #9 – Elliot Hubbard

On this episode of the Hunt2Fish podcast, we talk with land management guru and whitetail enthusiast, Elliot Hubbard.

Some highlights include:

  • Fall food plots
  • Deer behavior
  • Hunting strategies
  • And, of course, we have a little APR talk.

Be sure to join us, as the deer opener is rapidly approaching!

Products & Resources mentioned:

Michigan Deer Hunters Let em go Let em grow FB page

Lil Acorn Outdoors

North Woods Whitetails

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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A Traditional Archery Journey – Part 2: Decisions, Decisions

Read Part 1: Background here

After a week of unsuccessfully chasing turkeys, I was bit with the hunting bug. When I get into something, I dive in all the way. Now hunting has been added to my  list of eclectic interests right along with open source software, board games, art, barefoot running, photography, and music. Along with hunting, two sub-interests tagged along – flintknapping and traditional archery. My next step in the pursuit of archery was to buckle down and get a bow.

So many decisions: What would I need? Custom or factory? Recurve, longbow, hybrid, reflex-deflex, horse bow, flatbow, self bow – what does that all mean? What is my draw length & what weight do I need. What length? Do I need a shelf? If so, should it be cut to center?

Most everything I read was geared for those who were switching over to traditional from compound, where there was at least some understanding of terminology. There was very little information that was easy to understand for someone completely new to archery. I had to break things down into very general areas before I could dive deep into the nuances.

The longbow has a lot of romance tied to it, it's the bow of Robin Hood, the bow of Howard Hill, it's also a very forgiving style of bow, I can make mistakes and still hit the target.

-Byron Ferguson

Type of Bow

I scoured and devoured every piece of information I could find on what all the different types of bows were. I had already made the decision that I would not use a compound. I have nothing against compounds, I just knew they weren’t for me. To pay the bills, I work in the high-tech world of computers and gadgets and I craved something simple.  I quickly learned, however, that within the traditional archery world, things are only as simple as you choose them to be.

I realized that there were two main types of bows to focus on – recurves and longbows. Within those two very broad categories, there is a plethora of subdivisions, but I wanted to focus on those main two. They each had their positives. For me it came down to these things

  • A mysterious thing called handshock. Apparently, it is not fun and longbows were supposed to have it,while recurves don’t.
  • Smooth draw. Apparently, it is good and longbows are supposed to have it, while recurves don’t.

Now, looking back, I realize that neither of those things is completely true. There are recurves with handshock and longbows without it. Similarly, there are recurves that don’t “stack” and have smooth draw and there are longbows that stack and aren’t as smooth. However, this was the information I was working with and the generalized consensus of “The World Wide Web.”

Faced with the false dilemma before me, I was trying to figure out if I wanted to give up smooth draw or handshock. I then came across something called a hybrid, or reflex-deflex longbow. this design offers many of the advantages of a recurve in the form of a longbow.

Custom vs. Off-The-Shelf

Having decided on a hybrid longbow, I needed to find one of good quality that fit my budget. This led me further down the rabbit-hole of terms I didn’t understand the significance of: draw length, draw weight, riser type, grip shape, ILF, etc. I researched all I could and found the very basics of what I needed to know. Still, I was a bit overwhelmed and knew I needed some help. I looked at some of the more popular manufactured hybrid longbows. There wasn’t a real consensus like there was with recurves (you will see the Samick Sage mentioned over and over as a recommended first recurve). For no real reason except price and availability at a local big box store, I was set on the Bear Montana.

I noticed that at its price I could also get an entry level custom bow. So my research led me down the road of custom bowyers. There are some incredible bowyers out there that make wonderful works of art. I really wanted a Stalker Stickbow. South Cox, the owner/bowyer and I shared a bit of a connection – he was from Big Sur and his place in Fortuna was a few houses down from my mom.  Small world! However, the bows were out of my price range.

There was another name that kept coming up – Kegan McCabe and his Omega Longbows. People kept mentioning that his bows performed as well or better than high-end custom bows at a fraction of the cost. How could that be? He uses native woods as opposed to the exotics of many other companies. The more I read and researched, the more I was intrigued. Especially when given the option of an unfinished (unstained, unsealed) bow at a discount. Now, high-end performance was attainable while spending far less than I would have on any manufactured bow that offered similar performance.

The unfinished bow

I also had access to a helpful, knowledgeable bowyer. He didn’t mind the simple questions I asked that he’s likely answered hundreds of times for others. He guided me to what I needed, not what made him the most money. Truly good customer service.

Final Decisions

My initial setup, after about a month of practice @ ~15 yards.

Now that I knew where I wold be sourcing my bow from, I still had to do things like figure out my draw length, weight, etc. Here’s what I ended up with and the reasoning behind each part:

Component Description & Reasoning
Make & Model Omega Imperial  This model offered the most options. It is a “stealth D” bow, meaning it is legal for strict longbow tournaments. It is forgiving and does well with both targets and hunting. I don’t have any aspirations of competing in tournaments, but it is nice to know that the option is there.
Length 64″  This is a length that would be short enough for most hunting situations, but long enough at my height and draw length to have a nice, smooth draw.
Draw Weight 40#  40 pounds out of modern hybrid like the Imperial is roughly equivalent to 45# out of an older style bow. This is more than enough to hunt North American big game with, but light enough that I can still work on good form. Some people suggest getting an even lighter bow. I’m inclined to think that generally, lighter is better and I went at the very top of the “light first bow” range since I had the now laughable perspective I would only ever get this one bow.  This will be different for everyone, but keep in mind that lighter is better – No matter what you may use in the compound world or how much you can bench press.
Draw Length  29″  I’m 6’0″ and figured out my draw length with the calculation of my arm span (72″) divided by 2.5 which came out to 28.8. Kegan recommended rounding up to 29″ as he believed my draw length would likely expand somewhat over time, which it has (about 30″ now).

Arrows

What a complicated subject! Again, the terms were thrown around as if I understood – Bareshaft tuning, weak spine, stiff spine, FOC, carbon, aluminum, wood, etc. I asked Kegan for a basic recommendation that would get me close and ended up with some Beman ICS Bowhunter .500 spine arrows 31″ long. I figured I would learn to tune after I learned to shoot, knowing that even given perfect arrows for my bow, I still needed to learn the mechanics of the shot cycle. Looking back, this approach was a good one because the detail of information can get overwhelming in a hurry. I have since changed my arrow setup (now shooting Valkyrie Archery‘s full-on “Ultimate Broadhead Delivery System”), but this was an excellent starting point.

My current setup with a beaver tail grip, Selway slide-on quiver, custom flemish twist string, bear hair rest, and Valkyrie arrows.

Now that I had made my decision, I placed my order and waited for my bow to arrive.In the meantime, I needed to study and prepare myself to be ready once my bow was ready. About 6 weeks later, it was shipped in a nearly indestructible PVC tube ready for me to sand and stain.

Recommendation: If you are at all interested in traditional archery and are wondering where to start, just get started somewhere. Don’t let the all of the information and opinions become daunting. Be sure to do your research – reach out to bowyers and those on the web. Just don’t let it overwhelm you. Get a (light) bow, some arrows, and start flingin’ ’em!

To Be Continued…

Episode #8 – Jeff Elliott

On this episode of the podcast we talk bass and bass fishing with with fisheries biologist Jeff Elliott. Jeff is also a very successful bass tournament angler from the west side of Michigan. We get to pick his brain about a variety of topics related to bass fishing. You don’t want to miss this one, it is packed with useful information!

Products & Resources mentioned:

http://jeffelliottoutdoors.com/

http://www.reelnsmoke.com/

http://fishsens.com/

Jeff’s Facebook page

 

 

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #7 – Capt. Wayne Carpenter

In the seventh episode of the Hunt2Fish Outdoors Podcast, Ken has a discussion about Fishing on Lake St. Clair with Captain Wayne Carpenter.

Capt. Wayne has dedicated fifteen years of effort to bringing in fishing information and bait technology to anglers. The research done over that period resulted in the development of the Combat Fishing Weekly Newsletter, No Secrets on Lake St. Clair volumes 1 and 2 books, No Secrets On Lake St. Clair DVD, Marked Map Series 1 and 2, and multiple websites.  Wayne has also developed a full line of tournament quality baits by Xtreme Bass Tackle. He has been recognized as the foremost bass fishing expert on Lake St. Clair through his participation in Michigan’s major fishing shows, TV and radio appearances and nationally known product development.

 

Show Highlights

  • Seasons on Lake St. Clair
  • Equipment use
  • Canadian vs American waters

 

Products & Resources mentioned:

Xtreme Bass Tackle

St. Clair Report

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #6 – Dr. Jim Brauker

In the sixth episode of the Hunt2Fish Outdoors Podcast, Ken has a long discussion about Antler Point Restrictions (APRs) in the state of Michigan and Extreme Deer Habitat with Dr. Jim Brauker.

Dr. Jim Brauker is part of the Let em go Let em grow page and operates Extreme Deer Habitat.

 

Show Highlights

  • Pros and cons of APRs
  • A scientific approach to data collection and interpretation
  • Techniques for habitat improvement

 

Products & Resources mentioned:

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #5 – APR Debate with Dr. Jim Brauker and Richard P. Smith

In the fifth episode of the Hunt2Fish Outdoors Podcast, Ken & Gabe host a debate on mandatory Antler Point Restrictions (APRs) in the state of Michigan between Dr. Jim Brauker and Richard P. Smith.

Dr. Jim Brauker takes the position in favor of mandatory antler point restrictions. He is an admin of the Let em go Let em grow page. You can also read more about his work at Extreme Deer Habitat.

Richard P. Smith, an outdoor writer, takes the position against mandatory antler point restrictions. You can find out more at his site here.

We will also be releasing previously recorded individual interviews with each of our guests in the near future.

Show Highlights

Products & Resources mentioned:

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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Episode #4: Talkin’ Turkey with Chad Andrus

In the fourth episode of the Hunt2Fish Outdoors Podcast, Ken & Gabe talk with turkey hunting veteran Chad Andrus.

Show Highlights

  • Scouting Tips and Tactics
  • Morning Roost Hunt
  • 10am-2pm Run-n-Gun
  • Evening Hunts
  • Beginner’s tips on tools of the trade – calls & decoys.
  • And much more!

Products & Resources mentioned:

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.  

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SWEET AND SPICY VENISON CHILI

Give this recipe a shot next time you decide to use up that ground venison!

Sweet and Spicy Venison Chili

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground venison
  • 1 onion
  • Garlic (as much as you like)
  • 1 can of tomato soup
  • 1 big can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can of tomato paste
  • 1 can of hot chili beans
  • 1 chili seasoning packet (or season your own)
  • crushed red pepper
  • olive oil
  • brown sugar

Cooking instructions:

Brown venison with olive oil, onion and garlic. Add tomato soup, tomatoes, tomato paste hot chili beans (don’t drain the beans) and chili seasoning packet. Bring to a boil while stirring occasionally. Turn heat down to medium, add crushed red pepper to taste, cover let simmer 10-15 minutes stirring occasionally. Add brown sugar to taste, simmer for 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

Bonus: If you have squirrel or rabbit, crock pot the meat, de-bone and add to your chili and now it becomes “sweet and spicy wild game chili”!

Episode #3: Theo Corcoran

In the third episode of the Hunt2Fish Outdoors Podcast, Ken & Dom talk with the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup Co-Angler champion, Theo Corcoran.

Show Highlights

  • Theo tells us how he got his start in fishing
  • Theo’s thoughts on Pontiac Lake
  • Theo’s  mental approach to fishing
  • How Theo got involved with FLW
  • Theo’s  Forrest Wood Cup Championship experience
  • Some insight into rod selection Theo makes

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.

Products & Resources mentioned:

Okuma

Nemesis Baits

FLW

Listen to the Podcast! (And don’t forget to leave us a review!)

 

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Recipe: Venison Meatballs

Give this tasty slow cooker recipe mentioned on the second podcast episode a try!

Ingredients:

Meat

1 pound ground venison
1/4 cup uncooked instant rice
1 beaten egg
1tbs. onion powder
1/4 cup tomato soup
1 tbsp creole seasoning
cooking oil

Sauce

1 cup tomato soup
1/2 cup water
1 tsp soy sauce

Directions:

  1. Combine venison, rice, egg, onion powder, creole seasoning and 1/4 cup tomato soup. Shape into balls
  2. Brown meatballs in skillet in oil over medium-high heat – than place in slow cooker
  3. In large bowl mix 1 cup tomato soup, water and soy sauce together and pour over meatballs
  4. Let cook several hours in slow cooker

“A hunt based only on the trophies taken falls far short of what the ultimate goal should be.” -Fred Bear

Episode #2: Spring Fever

In the second episode of the Hunt2Fish Outdoors Podcast, Ken, Dom, and Gabe talk about their plans for the spring including pre-spawn bass fishing, bass tournament season, food plots, saddle hunting, and spring turkey hunting.

Show Highlights:

  • Pre-spawn bass tips & techniques
  • Bass tournament season
  • Food plots and land management
  • Public land and leases
  • Tree Saddle advantages
  • Spring turkey hunting

Products & Resources mentioned:

Recipe

Venison Meatballs

Listen to the Podcast! (And don’t forget to leave us a review!

 

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Podcast Sponsors

Village Glass Company

A Traditional Archery Journey – Part 1: Background

What is it about a stick and a string that is so appealing? With all the advancements in technology, why would I ever be enticed to use something so simple?

There’s more fun in hunting with the handicap of the bow than there is in hunting with the sureness of the gun.

– Fred Bear

The catalyst was a simple enough: a Facebook post by Ken, “Every year people say they wanna try [turkey hunting] with me and every year I’m alone. Let’s do it, I would love to guide. PM if interested.” I jumped at the chance.  In the following weeks I learned all I could about turkeys, and on one of the scouting trips, we came across some feathers. When I picked one up, synapses fired and I was taken down a rapid-fire train of thought:

  • Wouldn’t it be cool to use the turkey feathers from the turkey I was bound to shoot to fletch an arrow?
  • Aside from some decorative ones, I don’t have arrows.
  • If I’m going to fletch the arrows, I would like to build the entire arrow. I should learn how to make arrowheads.
  • What good is having an arrow if I can’t shoot it? I would really like a bow.
  • If I get a bow for a homemade arrow, I think it only fitting for it to be a “traditional” bow. Nothing against compounds whatsoever, but it they just didn’t fit into this line of thinking. Learning to make a bow is too much for this year, so I’d like to look into options for custom recurves and longbows.
  • What good is having a custom bow if I can’t hunt with it? This year, I have the time and ability to hunt deer. No excuses.

A Displaced Californian

Growing up, I was used to backcountry hunting…without the hunting.

I grew up in the outdoors. Camping, hiking, fishing, backpacking – that’s my wheelhouse. It is difficult to recall the number of nights I’ve slept under the stars in the backcountry of the Ventana Wilderness or the fish breakfasts I’ve had in the Sierra Nevadas or the sidewinders I’ve encountered in the Mojave Desert.

I grew up in one of the most spectacular places on earth. My family was among the first settlers in Big Sur. As the song says, “The South Coast is a wild coast and lonely.” My Ohlone ancestors and their Esselen neighbors hunted deer, grizzly bears, and other game on the land for hundreds of years.  That tradition continued even as my great-great-great-grandfather homesteaded and ranched the land. I distinctly remember what I believe was the last hunt on the family property – it was the night I first ate deer heart. My father killed a deer on what is now the Post Ranch Inn. With the construction of that world-class resort, the horses we kept there and the hunting privileges were removed.

Yours truly as a boy well before the Inn’s construction. I can’t defend the clothing…it was the 80’s!

View from approximately the same spot today at the Post Ranch Inn. At the eco-friendly resort, wildlife has no human hunting pressure.

Misfire

With a father who hunted, an uncle who was a gunsmith, and Pastor and Youth Pastor that hunted, handling firearms was almost instinctive. It should logically follow that I would take up hunting as well. I passed the Hunter Safety Course taught by my uncle. My father gifted a rifle to me for my 12th birthday. And so, I went on my first hunting expedition with my father. Unfortunately, things didn’t go so well. I was 12 and I was made to sit still on a rock for hours in cold coastal fog. I honestly don’t remember much of it. In my mind, it wasn’t very noteworthy. However, my father decided that hunting wasn’t for me and never took me with him again. We’d go the gun range from time to time, but never hunting.

Years passed. I went to college where I met my wife. Hers was a family of hunters from Michigan. Every year, they asked me to go with them to their deer camp in the Upper Penninsula of Michigan. Every year, I had the desire to go, but I never had the time or finances to do so.

Then, a year ago, I had the time. I had the means. So, when that Facebook message from Ken came across my feed, I took advantage of the opportunity.

To Be Continued…

Episode #1: Introductions

Episode #1: Introductions

 

Welcome to the very first episode of the Hunt2Fish  Podcast! Get to know your hosts Ken Scicluna, Dom Guzzardo, and Gabe Forster.

Show Highlights

  • Who we are and our backgrounds in the outdoors
  • Goals for this podcast
  • Tournament Bass preparations
  • Hunting with a longbow and Tree Saddle
  • Spring Turkey hunting

We’d like to thank our sponsor, Village Glass Company of South Lyon, MI.

Products & Resources mentioned:

Listen to the Podcast! (And don’t forget to leave us a review!

 

Listen on iTunes

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Podcast Sponsors

Village Glass Company

 

The Hunt2Fish Podcast

Ok, so we are actually in the final stages of getting this podcast up and going. It has been a long process but we are right there! It is a dream come true for me to be hosting a podcast about  hunting and fishing. Ever since I heard my first outdoor radio show back in 2001, Bob Bauer’s Outdoor World, I knew it was something I would love to do. When podcasts hit the scene and I discovered them and realized people were doing them from their spare bedroom or basement, my wheels started turning. I was able to be a guest on the Dock Talk podcast run by a bass fishing friend of mine. Being in that studio and seeing a podcast run in such a professional manner really got me excited.

We are a Michigan based show and we will be talking about things we do here but everything we talk about will be helpful to everybody that hunts and fishes across the country. We are NOT experts at anything we want this podcast to be about learning and education. We are average guys who just fish and hunt a lot. We want to learn everything we can. What better way than to have our own podcast and have the actual experts come on and teach us all something?  When coming up with the name I struggled. I wanted to call it “Michigan” or “Great Lakes” something but I did not want to confine myself, I want someone to listen to the show in Colorado to Texas or New Jersey and get something out of it. We are proud Michiganiacs and that presence will be felt on the show, but this is for everybody.

Now that you have the back story, I want to discuss what the Hunt2Fish Outdoors content is all about. I have a passion for the outdoors in general but the two things that consume most of my thoughts are hunting and fishing. Specifically deer hunting and tournament bass fishing. Since that is what I’m most passionate about, I think its what I could do the most high quality programming on and make it great. Now I love all other types of hunting and fishing and do them quite often but this show will focus on deer hunting and bass fishing. I can tell you though when its turkey season, we are gonna have a turkey episode, when its walleye time we are gonna have a walleye episode. I have been toying with the idea of having a “spring in the outdoors” series of episodes. A couple of episodes where we dedicate time to all the great activities of spring like pan fish and bass on the beds, walleye jigging, turkey hunting, Morel mushroom hunting, food plot prep, all that stuff. What a great time of year that is!

We will most likely open the show with a  “chew the fat” segment where we might dive into some other topics we have been up to outside of bass fishing and deer hunting or how our bass/hunting season is going at the time.  We are hoping to have the top names in the world of deer hunting and land management. Did I mention I am a huge land management geek? Yeah we are gonna dive into that big time. When it comes to bass fishing I am currently trying to get some FLW pro’s on the show, who knows maybe we will get really lucky and score an Elite series angler. On top of that I would love to talk to guys that fish the BASS opens and BFL’s. The guys that are grinding and trying to go pro. We will also have guide services, charter boat captains, fish biologists etc…  We are gonna talk a lot about technique, gear and strategies. The world of bass fishing is Pandora’s box, the topics are endless. The best part about bass fishing is that it can make you an all around better angler a lot of the techniques and strategies carry right over to other types of fishing, especially pan fishing and pike fishing and we are gonna dive into that. The best pike fisherman around are bass guys, just ask em! On the hunting side of things we wanna get guys on the show that do land management and education for a living or a big part of their living. We are gonna talk about going after mature bucks, how to just shoot a deer no matter the size, the basics of hunting, how to hunt the huge tracts of public ground, how to use scrapes and rubs to your advantage, playing the wind,  hunting gear and equipment, land management, deer biologists,  deer camps and last but not least recipes, we are gonna try and have a recipe segment during each show. Hopefully we can get a wild game chef to call in and give us one from time to time. Of course we would have to go sample the food first. Food will be a big part of the show because after all that is the end game. There is a lot that I did not mention that we will talk about but I’m sure you get the gist of what we are trying to accomplish. We want to dive deep into all these outdoor topics and get geeky and learn. We want the podcast to be a place for all of us to come and learn something.

Thanks for reading this and look for the show soon. until next time, tight lines and shoot straight!

 

Year Round Whitetail Hunting

Hey everybody, I just wanted to write a quick, short article to keep you motivated about deer hunting. This time of year it is easy to think about everything else. There is ice fishing, small game hunting, turkey season is right around the corner and of course we are all gearing up for open water.

There is plenty to do this time of year in regards to deer hunting though –  the hunt should never stop. Now is a great time of year to scout new areas especially if there is no snow. Last years’ rubs, scrapes, deer runs, and possible bedding areas are still visible. If you are looking to scout new areas, this is the prime time because most hunters on public land leave lots of evidence they were there and you can eliminate ground quickly.  Studying maps is one of my favorite things to do this time of year as well. Satellite maps and contour maps can really be a help if you know what to look for.

If you have private ground, now is the time to start making that to do list and thinking about improvements to be made over the summer. I like to go through and fix my shooting lanes in late winter, it will be similar to what the woods are going to look like come fall. Personally, I plan on making a new bow spot with a ground blind in the thickest cover on the property and expand my food plot, possibly doubling its current size.

So, get out there and keep things moving. I try to get out once a month and do something, even if it is just going for a walk with a shotgun. Until next time, shoot straight and tight lines!

Scouting and Deer Hunting on Heavily Pressured Public Land: What I’ve Learned

 

 

 

I want to start off by saying that I have brought this challenge of public land hunting on myself. I currently have a very good private land spot that I usually take a couple deer off of every year. There is no guarantee that permission land will be there year to year, so it is always a good idea to have a back up plan. I have decided to challenge myself to the max by picking what is arguably the heaviest hunted public ground in the state of Michigan. I love this challenge. I think it will be fun and I think it will sharpen my skills as a deer hunter by leaps and bounds as the years go on. The good news is that this public ground has a healthy deer population with big bucks on it. Battling other hunters and their movements is a major factor and once I can master that, I think the pieces will fall in place for me. I look at this in a very methodical way. I have spent two years scouting, now I am ready to make my first real move. It might take me 4-5 years to get it figured out, maybe more but it will very rewarding when I do.

I have actually only hunted this public ground for a couple weeks two years ago because I made the mistake of hunting around a crop field and had other hunters show up for gun season preparation, the game was over and I just went back to private ground. While I have been scouting public ground off and on  for the past two years, there are some valuable lessons and conclusions I have came to recently. One conclusion is, a person needs to be in decent shape physically to remain mobile during the season. I say this because to be successful you need to have a minimum of five or more trees to sit in for several reasons. The main one being, having other hunters move in and spoil your spot. Others include bad wind direction or plain and simple a spot that just didn’t pan out like you hoped. I personally do not have an interest in owning more than 3-5 tree stand set ups. I would much rather be in decent shape to the have the stamina and strength to take down a stand and just move. Its a lot of work but you need to be mobile on public ground. My goal by next year is to have at least 10 trees that I can just go to and hunt. The idea being, to have two or three stands in the most prime spots to kill a doe for the freezer or a prime rut spot that I wanna leave untouched until Halloween. Then, have that extra one to move around with. I really feel being mobile is a major factor on public ground  if you want to hunt a lot and not just during the rut. So hit the treadmill, elliptical or trails and get that cardio in check!

Secondly, is going the extra distance to get at those hard too reach spots. I say that keeping in mind that if its too thick and nasty for a long way, you are going to ruin your hunt, I don’t care how early you get there. Remember its public ground and you cannot cut down or trim anything that is living. Some of the terrain here in Michigan is so thick and nasty its impossible to maintain any level of stealth but still hard to reach areas are the key. Boats, canoes and kayaks really come into play  if water ways are around and accessible. A person can access hard to reach places with ease. I have a few of these spots that I’m excited to check out. Also, I know that don’t matter how far back I go, there is still a good chance that another tree stand or blind is close by even though I never seen it, or one will be popping up a week before the gun opener. Also, if a funnel or pinch point looks like the money spot on Google Earth, even if it is way way back there, there is a very good chance someone has claimed it. This has happened to me several times already. Learning how to react to this is something I’m still working on. My mind tells me to just leave the area totally and another part of me says if there is a good amount of sign around, roll the dice and set up an appropriate distance away and hunt it until the guy or gal starts showing up (why I want to have at least 10 trees to choose from). But I can for sure say that hunting the edges or the inside wood line of public land crop fields or wherever there is a public parking area or pull off spot is a complete waste of time. You might get lucky the first week but after that its all been ruined by careless hunters.

I also want to mention the overlooked land. The land that is right next to the road but has no public parking areas or pull off areas. A lot of these types of areas have very thick cover and are not easy to get at. With some natural browse around and in this area of Michigan a crop field or a white oak is never too far away, its a winning combo for deer. Right now, I have a huge chunk of public ground that runs parallel with a dirt road and  sits between the road and some big power lines. It has crop fields within  reach for the deer, that land right now has no other stands on it. Its loaded with deer sign. I could be missing one or two stands, but bottom line, compared to most other areas, its about as good as it gets for lack of human activity.  I would just say that if you find an area that has a lot of sign and no other stands around, set up and hunt it! Don’t matter how close to the road it is. Then adjust to deer movement accordingly.

Right after gun season ends, the months of December and January are the best times to get out and scout for the next season. Rubs, scrapes and deer runs that were actually used in the fall will be very visible and easy to spot. Also, human activity will be easy to spot and can really give you big clue of what is gonna happen next season with other hunters. Plus, you never know, a great spot to set up real quick for muzzle loader or late bow season could be discovered. Until next time, shoot straight and tight lines!!

My Tournament Bass Fishing Season in Reveiw

To say I learned a lot about bass fishing this summer would be an understatement. Last year my partner and I managed to pull off a miracle and win Angler of the year (AOY) for Cash For Bass’s Thursday night division. This year made me realize how special that was and should never be down played or taken for granted when that recognition is earned. My hats off to this years winners.

This year I tweaked my style a little bit. I felt I fished “scared” last year trying to win AOY and it cost me money. This year we incorporated some big fish techniques such as punching, pitching big jigs, pitching big tungsten with big flippin hooks and  craw imitation plastics in deeper weeds. Early on it worked. We won our first ever tournament on Whitmore Lake and followed that up with a second place finish and some cash on the Portage Chain of Lakes. That one was an  NTBA tournament against the very best around. After that, we had some close finishes just out of the money with some “the one that got away” excuses that we kept to ourselves. That brings me to my next point, FISHING CLEAN. This is a deal breaker! If we could have fished clean I know without a shadow of a doubt we could have racked up another win and cashed two more times BUT we didn’t and that is the bottom line. Later in the season we cashed on a 3 hour event on Woodland lake with 2 fish! After that, we rounded out the season with an awesome second place finish on a Saturday event on Whitmore Lake. That was a big deal for us and it was a good pay day.

After starting out the season firing on all cylinders I found myself slipping back into my same old patterns, fishing offshore while the shallow guys were winning and placing in the money. We got wrapped up in the dream of getting AOY. That messes with my head. I should of put that out of my mind. I spent all winter and spring telling anyone who would listen to me that I was gonna move shallow later in the summer. Never did. Offshore can produce and we hung in there most weeks dragging a Kustom Kicker Dock Monkey 1/2 oz. jig and drop shotting out in the deeps. We had 5 just out of the money finishes. Needless to say I need to become a shallow water guy, specifically a dock guy and use that weapon appropriately at the appropriate time. Instead of grinding out in the deeps every week. I will not make this mistake again.

I have to mention our DQ on Whitmore. We came back one minute late. We pushed it to the limit like everybody else does, hooked a giant smallie in  the last minute and it fought us a little too long. End of story. We also had a zero result on Big 7. That lake can ruin your AOY hopes in 3 hours, no problem. We ended the season with a big motor malfunction on Kent lake and zeroed again. That killed our hopes for the tournament of champions, a tournament for the top 3 anglers from each division at the end of the season.

I will call it a successful season though. I learned a ton and we actually made money. We won one event, placed in the money on two all day Saturday events and cashed one more time on a Thursday night. We also made some new friends and become closer with a few guys from Thursday nights. What a great crew we had this past summer, lots of fun. I have a lot of things to think about going into next season. I am thinking about abandoning fishing on a regular night and just cherry picking the lakes I actually enjoy fishing. After all, this is supposed to be fun. I know I’m not going pro and I am ok with that. Until next time, tight lines and shoot straight!

Welcome to Hunt2Fish Outdoors!

Hey everybody, Thanks for stopping by. We are a group of guys that absolutely love hunting, fishing and anything to to with the outdoor lifestyle. Our main goal here is to help you and ourselves learn and grow as outdoors people. We have a podcast coming soon, we also will be doing video updates and of course articles right here on the page. We want this to be a place to celebrate our outdoor lifestyle and to just get down right pumped up about it. So much on the way. Stay tuned and thanks for reading this.