Prepping

Woodcock migrate, a trait they share among upland gamebirds only with the quail that fed the Israelites. That comparison isn’t lost on woodcock hunters, who treat their favorite birds as practically heaven-sent. Step into an October cover full of flight birds that was empty the day before, and the woodcock migration does indeed seem miraculous.
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Insects suck. They also bite and sting. Some inject venom that can kill outright or produce a deadly allergic reaction. Others, like mosquitoes, spread parasites that are responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people annually. The list below, just to be clear, is taxonomically laid-back. Spiders and scorpions, for example, are not
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Late fall trout fishing can be hit-or-miss. Fall streams might be skinny from the hot, dry summer, or blown out by autumn storms. Pools that produced in April or June might now seem empty, especially on waters that rely on spring stocking for their fish. And fall is a busy time—there are leaves to rake,
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One thing about hunting camp: Even if the hunting is terrible, at least you can rely on some good eating. Whether it’s a pot of venison chili, the greatest, perfectly-cooked backstrap recipe, or a warm meal that’s been bubbling in the slow-cooker all day, hunting camp is a place for great meals. Here, our editors
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You can learn a lot at deer camp. How to hang a treestand and field-dress a deer, sure. But camp is also the perfect setting to teach invaluable skills, such as driving a stick shift, executing a family deer drive, and cussing. That’s right, cussing. Here is a collection of some of our favorite tips
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Sure, hunting camp is a great place to hang with family and friends, eat good food, and maybe enjoy a drink or two. But there are always some chores to be done around camp—whether it’s splitting firewood, setting a mousetrap, or cleaning a skull to hang on the wall. So, let’s get to work. Clean
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A lineup of quintessential modern deer guns from Weatherby, Savage, ­Winchester, GA Precision, and Henry. (Bill Buckley/) Boiled down to the essentials, a proper deer camp requires only a few things: a source of fire for cooking and warmth; coffee in the morning and sipping ­liquor in the evening to enjoy around said fire; and
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The author carefully adds kindling to a fire in the rain. (Jim Baird/) Hunters today have access cutting-edge gear like satellite messengers, GPS units, space-age synthetic fabrics, and other high-end tools. However, the survival skill of knowing how to start a fire with primal tools is still as essential as ever. Lighting a one-match fire,
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A shooter buck makes a rare ­daylight ­appearance. (Lance Krueger/) Biological evidence essentially proves that the so-called October lull is a myth. Still, many bowhunters have trouble finding bucks in early October. I’d never call it my favorite time of year. But every so often, conditions are such that they blend early-season predictability with pre-rut
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Depending on where you hunt elk, your choice for a rifle could change. (John Hafner Photography/) Selecting the 10 best elk rifles is like choosing the world’s most beautiful people. It’s subjective, for one. But also, the “best” may not be practical for you. A Hollywood star might set your heart a flutter, but she
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NEEDS INTRO COPY Pat Missed the 8-Pointer, Twice, by Scott Bestul It was opening morning at our Minnesota bowhunting camp, and our group had gathered in a rough circle in my yard after the morning sit. We were trading stories when Pat straggled in, wearing a sideways grin directed at Dave. “You look like you
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The author packs out a nice 5×5 bull, taken in a remote public-land drainage. (miles fedinec/) For a fee, Travis Reed and Miles Fedinec of Western Sky Outfitters will treat you to a week of misery in Colorado’s San Juan Mountains. There are no showers and only restless tent sleep. You’ll burn so many calories
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The Pebble Mine project could destroy the Bristol Bay ecosystem forever. (VasikO via depositphotos.com/) Pebble Mine executives have finally admitted the obvious: that once they start digging their copper-and-gold mine, set in the headwaters of Alaska’s famed Bristol Bay, home to the world’s largest red salmon run, they have no intention to stop—at least not
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You don’t always have to trek into the backcountry to score on a trophy bull. (Lon Lauber/) For many elk hunters, September means spiking out in the high country with some pack horses and a wall tent. For all the backcountry’s glory, it suffers from a problem: It’s a hell of a tough place to
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An early-season buck grunts to make contact with a nearby deer. (John Hafner Photography/) The vast majority of deer hunters are call-shy. In forty years of hunting with and talking to fellow hunters, I’m continually surprised at how few of them call to whitetails half as much as they should. And almost no one talks
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The Wasp Havalon HV 125 was the author’s favorite fixed-​blade of the test. (Wasp/) Last spring, I spent a week tearing up broadheads. I shot 20 new models through sides of beef ribs to test durability and pene­tration. I further evaluated them for accuracy, sharpness, and consistency. What I learned can help you pick the
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A 140-class buck works a rub in a prime staging area. (Mark Raycroft/) You couldn’t miss this buck, and not just because he was hitting the same feeding area day after day. There was the rack. The landowner described the buck’s velvet antlers, which he could see from the roadside most evenings, as “a chandelier
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I love to squirrel hunt for the pure, low-brow fun of it. You get to see a lot of game, make a lot of stalks, and do a lot of shooting. That’s the Good Time Trifecta in my book. Plus, it’s cheap and accessible. You can kill a limit of squirrels as easily in a
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The Roman army issued its soldiers a dagger called a pugio, and they used it to stab anyone who annoyed them, which was a lot of people. The pugio, however, was distinctly unhandy for anything but puncturing Parthians or carving Carthaginians, so the Romans carried folding knives, lots of which have turned up in excavated
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Your first year of flyfishing is going to be an adventure. But I’m not going to lie to you, it can also be frustrating—and it will be more so without the right gear. That said, you don’t need to spend thousands of dollars to get quality equipment to serve you during and beyond your first
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