The Phoenician Unveils Exclusive Resort Ritual

Scottsdale, AZ (PRWEB) October 20, 2014

The Phoenician, Arizona’s premier AAA Five Diamond destination, is launching an innovative program of mythical proportions. The Flight of the Phoenix, now taking place every Friday and Saturday at sunset on the Thirsty Camel patio, features the iconic bird of legend come to life.

Each weekend, Master Falconer Robby Sinkler spins the captivating tale of the Mayan Fire Spirit, which ancients believed could rise from the ashes to be born again. Known as Zopilote Rey, this magical creature soars from above, swooping down on the audience to once again regain his regal position amidst a flaming replica of his likeness. The South American Vulture’s twilight return to The Phoenician symbolizes renewal, as prophesized in the story, bringing good fortune and well-being to all who witness him.

After the complimentary performance, guests and visitors alike are invited to take pictures of Rey, ask questions, and meet some of his wild counterparts who also reside at The Phoenician. Adult guests will have the opportunity to cap off their evening with the Thirsty Camel’s exclusive Classic is Cool offerings. The mid-20th century, nightclub-style feel is played out through servers’ special uniforms and an interactive cocktail cart presentation, where different hand-crafted and infused drinks are prepared tableside nightly. The weekend menu also includes a signature cocktail, the Phoenix Rising, featuring The Phoenician’s own Woodford Reserve Bourbon. The slightly tart, refreshing flavor of this drink is a result of orange liqueur, orange juice, bitters and grenadine, which are combined with the vanilla and spice essence of the bourbon.

“Together, the Thirsty Camel’s Classic is Cool scene and the Flight of the Phoenix show blend the best of the past with a more modern resort experience,” said Mark Vinciguerra, managing director for The Phoenician. “While honoring our iconic history, we are also able to ‘rise’ to the occasion by creating new programs of discovery for our guests.”

Located at the base of Camelback Mountain, the 250-acre Phoenician offers two exquisite experiences – a 583-room AAA Five Diamond luxury resort hotel and Arizona’s only Forbes Five Star, AAA Five Diamond boutique hotel, The Canyon Suites — at one magnificent destination. The property features elegant, residential-style accommodations, distinctive and tantalizing cuisine across such restaurants as Il Terrazzo, J&G Steakhouse and Relish Burger Bistro, a championship golf course, 11 tennis courts, eight swimming pools, a children’s splash pad, The Centre for Well-Being and Salon Mila spa complex, an activities program for all ages and interests, numerous boutique shops, and a multi-million dollar art collection. In addition to these offerings, the stylish 60-room Canyon Suites provides more intimate surroundings and enhanced services, creating an atmosphere of uncompromising splendor. Both The Phoenician and The Canyon Suites are owned and operated by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., as part of The Luxury Collection. For additional information, please call (480) 941-8200; (800) 888-8234 or visit and

2013 wolf hunters hall of fame

WARNING!!! If you don’t like seeing dead animals close this video now. These are a few of the true conservationists who take the time to manage predators.
Video Rating: 3 / 5

Lone Druid – The Wolf Hunter Dota 2: Store Playlist: Dota 2: Store v2 Playlist: Dota 2 Playlist:…
Video Rating: 4 / 5

The Night Of The Hunter Return Of The Big Bad Wolf Now Showing On Dishdtvdirectdotcom

I have recently seen this movie at a film festival and loved it so much. And to my surprise, this is one is going to show in this week. Let me share something about this wonderful movie.

Synopsis: When Ben Harper is arrested for murder and robbery, only his children, John and Pearl, know where he has hidden the stolen money. He is found guilty and condemned to death. His cell mate is the itinerant preacher Harry Powell, who has been imprisoned for thirty days for stealing a car. Because Ben talks in his sleep, the Preacher learns of the money, but not where it is hidden.

On his release, he visits Bens home, purporting to be a former prison clergyman whose work brought him into contact with Ben. He insinuates himself into the family by courting Bens widow, Willa. The matchmaking is encouraged by Icey, who runs the local ice cream parlor with her husband, Walt. The Preacher marries Willa. In spite of his indifference towards her, she is drawn to his evangelical brand of religion. Pearl likes her stepfather, but John is wary. The Preacher separates the children and threatens Pearl in his quest for the stolen money. When he discovers that Willa has overheard him, his wifes fate is sealed. He pretends that she has left him in the night, taking his car.

Uncle Birdie is fishing when he discovers her body in the submerged car, but he is afraid of being accused of her murder and does nothing. By threatening John, the Preacher gets Pearl to admit that the money is hidden in her doll. The children escape their tormentor and flee in a boat, taking the doll with them. Their journey lasts several days. The boat drifts into reeds, where the youngsters are found by Rachel Cooper, who takes in unwanted children. The Preacher is searching for John and Pearl in the neighboring town when he encounters Gloria, one of the older girls who live with Miss Cooper. He poses as a suitor until Gloria reveals where John and Pearl are staying.

Miss Cooper becomes suspicious when he comes to collect them and she threatens him with a gun. When he returns that night, she shoots at him. He shelters in her barn, where the state troopers find him the next morning. At his trial, he is sentenced to hang for Willas murder. Icey and Walt, who were so much on his side, are the first to denounce him. The children remain with Miss Cooper.

By: Francis David

Francis helps people learn about Direct tv vs Dish network, and how they can save money every month with popular Dish Network offers. Francis and his team also help people determine if Satellite Internet is right for them.

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World Record Mako Shark Reeled in by Outdoor TV Host

Weatherford, Texas (PRWEB) August 27, 2014

Jeff Thomason of Weatherford, Texas is smiling ear to ear as he crushed the current record for arrowing a mako shark off the coast of California. Thomason reeled in an 800-plus pound shark and filmed the entire event for his TV show, Predator Pursuit.

“I couldn’t believe it when we were reeling this behemoth to the boat – he’s nearly 300 pounds larger than the previous record holder,” said Thomason.

The shark was 11 feet long and weighed in at 809.5 pounds. Thomason shot it with a bow and arrow attached to fishing gear. He was approximately 40 miles off the coast of California fishing with Captain “Mako” Matt, who also helped reel in the previous record holder’s shark. The meat was all donated to a local homeless shelter, according to Thomason. The previous record holder reeled in a 544-pound shark in mid-June.

The Bowfishing Association of America has verified the record.

A full article with behind-the-scenes photos from the event will be in Petersen’s BOWHUNTING January/February issue. Plus, Thomason is creating a full episode for his Predator Pursuit TV show.

Learn more about Predator Pursuit at and

About Predator Pursuit:

Predator Pursuit TV hosted by Jeff Thomason is a rare blend of fast action predator hunting and educational material all rolled into one. Jeff takes viewers all over the world chasing a variety of dangerous predators. Prepare to be entertained and informed on different tactics to become a more successful hunter. Thomason also owns and operates Night Hunting Depot at Learn more about the TV series and more at

Press Contacts:

Michelle Scheuermann

BulletProof Communications, LLC

P: 651.964.0264

E: michelle(at)bulletproofcomm(dot)com

Related Hunting Tactics Press Releases

Pearl Hunting

For a vast length of time, divers in the Indian Ocean gathered pearls. Also areas like the Red Sea and Persian Gulf were popular.

In those days pearl hunting had an element of danger, which even today still exists, albeit to a lesser degree.  The South China Sea was a popular place for the Chinese to hunt for pearls.  Hunting for pearls in the South China Sea started around the Han Dynasty (around 200bc).

Pearl hunting became very popular in areas such as Cubagua and Margarita, which are areas off the Venezuelan coast. The main reason for these areas becoming so popular was due to the simple fact that there were so many readily available pearls.  Nowadays Margarita pearls are very rare!

Divers used to dive down and manually extract the pearls from the bottom of the seabed and also from rivers.

Nowadays, in places like Dubai you can actually go pearl hunting!  As we have established earlier in this article, the Persian Gulf was (and still is) a very popular place to in go pearl hunting. Although considered dangerous, entrepreneurs have started to capitalize on this market by offering days out for those wanting to find pearls.

Making a living from pearl hunting requires a huge amount of time commitment, and also being happy to dive up to 40 meters is a useful prerequisite! However, on these pearl hunting days you will not be diving to such depths.  What you will learn on these days are where to look for pearls, and also what’s great is if you find a pearl you get to keep it!

In the 19th century pearl hunting accounted for over 90% of the regions economy in the gulf, including Dubai.

Many thousands of men used to work as divers. It was a very tough job as you cam imagine. May men lost their lives, and many suffered long term health issues from the nature of the work. The pearl divers were often rubbed in fats and oils to protect themselves from the seawater.

When vessels went out to sea they would often be cramped full of divers (over 100 per vessel at times). During these trips there were not just divers, but also men who did a range of jobs including a cook, ropes-men, a captain and even a singer!

The pearl hunters were very fit individuals – swimming lots kept them in shape. This was very important as they would have to dive down very fast, and then not breathe for up to 2 minutes.

Most people would find this very hard, but doing such when doing cardio-vascular exercise is something else! As you can imagine only younger men (under 40) could do this job. After the age of 40 most had either died or were too ill to continue.

This is the sad truth about the history of pearl hunting. Lucky today it is not as dangerous. However, it will ways have that inherent risk. That maybe is one of the reasons pearls are still so sort after today…

In the 19th century pearl hunting accounted for over 90% of the regions economy in the gulf, including Dubai. More details pearl jewellery in dubai

HUNTER Aston Short Navy Blue Wedge Ankle Rain Boot 42/10

Hunter eBay auctions you should keep an eye on:


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Deer hunting Scotland

There are many exciting and fun activities that you can do in Scotland, there are so many activities that you may find all of the activities that you want to do, hard to fit all into one holiday. As there are many things to choose from it really does help looking at all of the different types of activities that you can choose from. This article is aimed at exploring Scotland and giving you a list of the different types of activities that you can choose from. The article will then conclude by informing you on where you can find more information on these different activities including deer hunting Scotland and deer stalking Scotland.

As mentioned previously there are many different types of activities that you can choose from when looking for things to do on your holiday in Scotland. It is only after looking at all of the different choices of activities that you can be sure that you have found the best activity for you. Some examples of the different types of activities that you can choose from include:

Walking – there are many different types of walks that you can choose in Scotland including, hill and mountain walks and also Loch walks. Scotland has a lot to offer in terms of scenery and greenery. You will be sure to find a walk that is suited to you.

Deer hunting – Scotland has lots of wildlife and can offer lots in terms of hunting and this is also true with deer hunting. Scotland is home to many different estates with deer roaming around them.

Fishing – with the abundance of lakes and lochs Scotland can offer many different types of fishing holidays including fly fishing.

Deer hunting Scotland – to conclude

As you can see there are many different types of activities that you can choose from; if you would like more information then this can be found by entering the keywords ‘deer hunting Scotland’ into an internet search engine. This search will allow you to search through a vast array of companies that can aid and assist you.

Deer hunting Scotland is a great activity and at we can provide quality deer stalking Scotland to allow you to see these animals in their natural habitat. Visit us today!

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6 sent to hospital after car smashes into Hunter's Inn restaurant for second

6 sent to hospital after car smashes into Hunter's Inn restaurant for second
POTOMAC, Md. (WJLA) – For the second time this year, a car slammed into the Hunter's Inn restaurant, sending six people to the hospital. The incident marks the third time overall that a vehicle has driven into the establishment, prompting its owners to …
Read more on WJLA

Hunter-Reay wins IndyCar race in Iowa on tire gamble
NEWTON, Iowa — Ryan Hunter-Reay led only two laps in the Iowa Corn Indy 300 on Saturday night, but they were the ones that counted most as he helped continue Andretti Autosport's dominance at Iowa Speedway. Hunter-Reay stormed past the night's …
Read more on USA TODAY

Status update

We spend 6 months in Arizona so we've been totally occupied getting ready for our transition from Wolf Country to Coyote Country.

In the meantime, we've proofed out a great load for the Youth Ranger.  It's 37 grains of H4895 under those 150 grain Winchester Power Points.  We got them chronographed this week and they are doing 2250 fps at the muzzle and 1300 ft. lbs of energy at 100 yards.

The minimum energy for a wolf is said to be 1000 pounds and this load is good for that out to 200 yards.  The ballistics aren't good at 200 yard and you'd have to aim 7-8 inches high.  However, the load shots flat as a pancake at 100 yards and we are VERY happy with it.

We bought a loudspeaker on eBay and have been experimenting with various 12 volt sound system permutations and combinations.

From here on out for the next six months, everything we do will be "all about coyotes."  We're hoping to learn how to design a 12 volt sound system to really bring them in close.  We've ordered some various camo material to throw over our vehicle and we hope we can design a "field-of-fire" system this winter utilizing a team concept.  Ideally, we will have a team of four shooters, each covering a radius based on the north-east-south-west quadrants.  We will try to begin to work together with two-way radios so we are all totally safe.

No one knows from where the predators will come so it's imperative we have a plan that covers all the bases.

We simply don't have time right now to go into more detail.  Sorry 'bout that.  More in a week or so.

Meanwhile, Happy Hunting & Happy Shooting!

Many Cheers from A Wolf Hunter

Never Say Never

What is it about saying "I'm never gonna (fill in the blank)?"  Last Friday I essentially said, "I'm never gonna reload for the .308 Youth Ranger and then BAM, a little more than 24 hours later, I had loaded my first 100 rounds of .308 Winchester.  Go figure.

Now I'm hooked on reloading for the rifle within days after saying there was "no way, no how" I was going to reload.  That's crazy.  I gotta be more careful about using the "never" word.

Here's how it shook out in kinda chronological sequence.

First, I couldn't give up looking for .308 brass.  As you know, once-fired .308 brass is somewhat hard to find.  Anyway, Saturday morning, I found some on our local Craigs List--even though "all things gun" are banned from Craigs List.  Apparently, the Gun Cops at Craigs List hadn't spotted this guy's ad for brass.

So, I went out to his house and spent an hour BS-ing about guns and ammo and came away with 100 military Lake City once-fired, all headstamped from either 2005 or 2007 for $16.

Meanwhile, I hustled and picked up a pound if IMR4895. Paid $40 for 200 150 grain Winchester Power Points and some large CCI rifle primers.  I took all these to Shooting Buddy's George's place late Saturday afternoon.  He and I reamed out the military crimp and had 'em all loaded up in a couple of hours.  George then sold me a set of new RCBS .308 for $25.   George also loaned me a Dillon toolhead for the dies.

We loaded those flat base bullets over 40 grains of the IMR 4895.
The first 100.

Meanwhile, during Sunday's crummy weather I got to researching the Hodgdon website and "discovered" the reduced rifle load data.  It was such a startling revelation I actually called Hodgdon Monday morning to see if I read the data right.  I talked with the Sales Manager, Tom, and he was great.  He helped me understand the reduced rifle load data better and I was even MORE hooked.

Sunday was bad weather here so I didn't get to the range until Monday.  I shot up 40 of the them and quite a few had difficulty chambering.  Meanwhile, on Tuesday I decided to blow off using the Dillon 550B and switch back to a single stage Lee "C" press for the rifle shells.  George swapped me my leftover IMR4895 for an equal amount of H4895 and I was off and running.
The cartridge that won the West finds a new use on the range.

George has a $250 digital powder measure and I don't have diddly.  So, I took a spent .44-40 casing and soldered on a piece of welding rod and made my own powder scoop that holds precisely 37 grains of H4895.  I got my brass tumbled, lubed, decapped, resized, etc. and proceeded to adjust the dies for the Lee press and loaded by 25 rounds all by myself.  They fired GREAT yesterday and I was a very happy camper.

Then I bought another pound of H4895 and will pick up another couple hundred bullets today.  All-in-all, I expect to be able to load 400 rounds for a grand total (incl. tax) of $164 in supplies.  That calc's to 41 cents a round--a significant savings from the buck-a-pop of factory ammo.  Meanwhile, I've spent a whopping $60 on dies, shellholder, cartridge box and widgets such as a deburring tool and primer pocket reamer.

Luckily, I already had the digital caliper, single stage press, RCBS hand primer tool, Hornady digital powder scale, RCBS loading block and other necessary widgets.  Contrary to practically every single thing I said in that anti-reloading tirade, I am saving a bundle of money and finally getting to shoot the rifle...a lot.

So far, I burned up 80 rounds and can tell you this is going to be a GREAT Wolf Rifle and it's a keeper.

Hopefully, I can get the reduced loads chronographed soon and then calculate the foot-pounds of energy.
I have to tell you, I am happy as a clam reloading for the rifle.  It's a lot slower than loading .45 ACP on the Dillon 550B but it's every bit as much fun in its own way.  What the heck was I thinking when I said I wasn't going to reload for rifle?  What a fool!
 Our home on the range has a lot of great shooting bays, tables, stools and so forth.

Clearly, I have a long way to go to improve accuracy--these are at 50 yards--
but all of my first 20 shots were easily within the strike zone for an adult wolf.
 Happy Reloading & Happy Shooting!
PS--Don't worry--camera was on tripod w/self-timer.

Friday Hunt

We went out for a short hunt on Friday, October 26, 2012.  We met our new mentor, Kevin, for the first time and left Idaho Falls in the dark shortly after 7 am.  Kevin wanted to drive the Kelly Canyon area.  He knows that area well.  A decent snow storm hit that high country earlier in the week and put down 6-10 inches of the white stuff.  We spent well over three hours in 4WD low gear roaming the snow and ice packed back roads of this area.

The idea was to look for trackways that would cross the road.  If we spotted unmistakable wolf tracks we would then get out of the vehicle and hunt on foot.  Although we roamed far and wide through the high snow-covered country, we saw no wolf, coyote, deer or elk tracks.  We did see plenty of cattle tracks. (See post below.)

Periodically, we would stop and Kevin would give me some lessons on how to use the calls we are accumulating.  Kevin imparted a lot of great insights, ideas and some theories that we will discuss in separate, upcoming article posts.

Below are two graphics made with screen clips from Google Earth.  The top one shows our approximate area of meandering around the top of the Kelly Canyon area.  It sure was beautiful up there.  THANKS, Kevin!  That sure was a great choice for a place to do some "road hunting!"

The bottom graphic shows roughly where we hunted October 26th and its proximity to Idaho Falls and other nearby communities.  Discussion of the other circles is below the graphic.

OK, here's some discussion of the circles above.  As far as we know, the only documented pack is in the "Pine" circle.  That area is some super sweet wolf habitat and it's little wonder it's been colonized by a viable pack.  We don't know that there's a pack in our 10/26 hunt area.  It just happened to be a great area for Kevin and I to drive together while discussing the pros and cons of various calling techniques and animal behavior.

The smaller circles are where we plan to hunt next, if there's time in our schedule.  These areas go by various names such as: Skyline Ridge, Sunrise Ridge, Blacktail, Willow Creek, Tex Creek Wild Mgmt Area and "the wind farm."

IDFG doesn't mention wolves in either of these areas.  However, we have received four credible reports of the existence of wolves there.  One thing's for certain sure--it's near perfect wolf habitat.  Wolves are opportunistic colonizers and will quickly find and fill any (and presumably ALL) habitat niches suitable for their species.  The area of the two smaller circles "2" and "3" is richly abundant in mule and white tail deer and smaller game.  There are even some elk in that vicinity, too.  There's super quality denning habitat and amply cover and water as well.

We are certain we won't have time this year to hunt the Pine Creek Pack.  However, that's a goal for next year.

The Cattle Call

The cattle are prowlin', 
The coyotes are howlin' 
Way out where the doggies roam 
Where spurs are a jinglin' 
And the cowboy is singing 
His lonesome cattle call...

"The Cattle Call" was written by Tex Owen in 1934 and became one of Eddie Arnold's signature songs.

We finally had our chance today to put The Cattle Call to good use.  We bunched up with a herd of heifers and a few Bad Attitude Steers at a back country corral deep in MOAN Country.  (MOAN = Middle of Absolute Nowhere).  Basically, here in The West cattle OWN MOAN Country.  When you enter their turf, especially their feeding turf, the Cattle are in Control.

That's how it was when the Alpha Cows decided to do an intervention and block the cattle guard--our only way out.  Normally, the sight of a chunky Samurai sends them scattering left and right.  Today, the Samurai didn't bother them.  They weren't going to budge.

What's a guy to do?  Well, hey, we just purchased a $50 freaking WOLF CALL so we figured we might as well start getting out money's worth out of the call.  We got our of the Samurai, fetched the call, leaned down and proceeded to blow "The Cattle Call" in notes and tones only bovines could know.

Oh, you should have seem them scatter.  GONE were the Bad Attitude Steers.  Harried were the Heifers and nary a calf was to be seen.

So the moral of this story, pardner, is when ya git yerself backed up by bovines, don't hesitate to blow The Cattle Call!

The cattle are prowlin', 
The coyotes are howlin' 
Way out where the doggies roam 
Where spurs are a jinglin' 
And the cowboy is singing 
His lonesome cattle call ...

No Fleas, Please

Our Newest Mentor Kevin minced no words when it came to our jury-rigged flea protection deal.  He said, "I don't think your flea powder thing is going to work at all."  Kevin then proceeded to tell us about the "hows" and "whys" of flea control on a wild canid, specifically coyotes.

Kevin said he put coyotes in a contractor-grade garbage bag and covered them heavily with an flea fogger.  He said this took care of all the fleas.  The trouble is that coyotes are maybe 35-40 pounds and wolves can run to 110-120 pounds.  Wolves ain't gonna fit in a garbage bag until they are skinned.

Anyway, naturally, after we heard this report, we took our flea carpet powder back to Wal-Mart and got a miraculous full refund and swapped it out for RAID Flea Spray.   We can spray this stuff right on the wolf.  Roll him/her over and spray the other side.  We think it will take a full can of spray for the whole wolf.

Get this, the spray we just bought is approved for direct use on dogs but it isn't sold in the pet department--only in "Insecticides."  (It's back by mops, brooms and laundry soap.) Go figure.

The canister is the same weight as the powder but appears MUCH safer to use than the powder.  Likewise, we don't have to worry about what to do with the leftover powder--the leftover spray stays nicely in its own can.

Kevin did tell us to check out flea foggers.  We checked them out and they are MAJOR toxic chemicals the likes of which we can't even think about using.  This particular spray will be a compromise between the carpet powder and the foggers.  THANKS, Kevin, this is just one of the many great ideas you gave me today.

Factory vs. Reloads

We've been going "round and round" (pun intended) in the debate over whether to use factory ammo or to reload our own.

Bottom Line: We're going with factory ammo and have abandoned plans to reload for .308 Winchester.

So, why?  Please explain.

Simple.  One Word: M-O-N-E-Y

Here's how the economics add up or shake out or whatever.

Factory ammo costs a buck a shot.  A box of Winchester 180 grain Power Points is $18.57 at Wal-Mart.  Add the sales tax and you're a whisker under twenty bucks.  OK, 20 shells, 20 bucks, a buck a shot.

Now, theoretically, you could shoot for a lot less if you reloaded.  Right?  Wrong!  That paradigm works great for pistol shooting but it falls apart for rifle shooting.  Rifle shooting is so expensive is makes pistol shooting look free by comparison.

Here's how the math of reloading for our .308 works out.

First you need various equipment.  Here is a partial list:


  • Dillon turret head
  • .308 Brass
  • Brass trimmer
  • case gage
  • powder measure
  • bullets
  • powder
  • primers
  • (and probably a lot more I haven't thought of)

Each of the above is expensive.  Oddly, the cost of .308 brass is very high.  Currently, in Idaho Falls there are NO used casings.  New, unfired brass is selling for 50 cents a casing (incl. tax).  Even if I could coax a seller into shipping me some brass of dubious pedigree, the price would be 25 cents each delivered.  Match grade "used" brass is roughly 40 cents a casing delivered.

Bullets for the .308 are PRICEY!!!  Off-the-shelf bullets can run from 30 cents to 50 cents EACH.  I found a local guy selling really old bullets for 20 cents each but they were so worthless I wouldn't bother buying them.

Meanwhile,  rifle shells take giant GOBS of powder.  In the case of the .308 Win, we would be using 40-41 grains of IMR 4895.  That figures out to 15-16 cents per round in powder costs.

The primers are pretty straight forward and would cost a paltry three cents each.

A brass trimmer will cost about $45.  A case gage will cost $30.  A powder measure could cost as high as $200 (or more) for a hot rod digital model.  The dies could be had for maybe $25.  The turret head is $30 delivered.  (We already have a Dillon 550B.)

Now, if I need a de-burr tool and any other widgets, gadgets and gizmos, we're talking yet MORE money before we've loaded out first round.

That way I look at it, I'd have to invest AT LEAST $500 just to get STARTED in reloading for .308 Win.

Even if I cheaped it out and used a local buddy's equipment, I'd still have to spend roughly $150 just to begin the reloading process.  (NOTE: My local buddy is still using IMR 4895 powder that he bought for 50 cents a pound when they scooped it into paper bags!)

Friends & Neighbors, this math does NOT add up.  For the amount I plan to shoot, at the barest minimum, I'd have to shoot something like hundreds of rounds just to begin to break even on the deal.  If I bought stuff up to the $500 level, I'd have to shoot one or two thousand rounds to begin to break even.  Meanwhile, 1000 rounds of reloaded ammo, assuming the lowest possible amortization of the brass expense would cost about 50-60 cents per round, possibly more, depending on how much you paid for the bullets.

Right now, here's how the actual math shook out yesterday for me.  I calc'd I could reload for 88 cents a round or buy off-the-shelf ammo for $1.00 a round.  That's a total no-brainer of the first magnitude.   I might wind up spending $1200 just to save 12 cents. There is NO way I am going to invest a lot of money and time to save 12 cents a round for the amount of rounds I plan to shoot.

We will be very judicious in the amount of rounds fired to sight in the M70 Youth Ranger.  Laser bore sighting is free! After we have a good feel for how and where it shoots, that's it.  We will go back to the 1930's regime my Dad faced when his Father gave him one rifle shell and said, "You better come back with something to eat."

It really doesn't matter how many rifle shells you have to shoot--it only matters that you hit what you shoot with your first shot.  With wolves, the first shot is going to send them running 40-50 feet per second as far away from you as wolf-ly possible.

You could be Idaho's best shot on the rifle range and the Toast of your shooting buddies.  But that doesn't mean a thing if you get a case of "Wolf Fever."  (Think: Buck Fever)  All the target shooting in the world isn't going to help you if you get Buck Fever when the wolves show up.

With this Wolf Hunt Thing, it's always going to be a single shot game.  IF and WHEN you are lucky or skilled enough to get your ONE SHOT, that's it.  As anybody who shoots any type of firearm knows, you can practice and practice forever but when it comes down to one shot, all that practice is only as good as your eye, nerves and trigger control.  You're either going to make the shot...or not.

Bottom Line: I am not going to spend hundreds upon hundreds of dollars burning .308 WIN ammo.  I'll spend my time practicing with my Marlin Model 60 .22 auto.

Thanks for reading & Many Cheers, WHIT  (Wolf Hunter In Training)

Wolf Call Arrives

The Wolf Call arrived Wednesday afternoon--two days after we ordered it.  We've put up a series of photos below--each with a caption or narrative.  It snowed here today we it's going to be a great day to head down to the basement and learn how to blow this call.
We were very impressed with the customer service of  Hunt Wolves Dot Com on Monday when we ordered.  We were even more impressed yesterday when this professional-looking package showed up in our PO Box.  Top notch in every way!
 We saved opening it until Thursday morning.  It snowed overnight so we were a little like a kid at Christmas with a special package waiting under the tree. What Fun!  Anyway, the whole contents of the package were just very professionally presented.
 You have to be sure to save to top of the bag that contains the wolf call since the instructions are printed on the backside. We forgot that a bonus call was included.

Above are the instructions for use of the wolf call.  They are on durable cardboard that we will get laminated.  We will also probably retype the essential parts and make a pocket size card to carry while hunting.

Above is the card that was stapled to the bag containing the wolf call.  Use your graphics program to rotate it to see the other side.  We highly recommend buying this call through Hunt Wolves Dot Com since their profit helps support their truly awesome website.  We think it's The Best wolf hunting website there is.

Above are the directions for the bonus Distemper Predator call.  This item alone could set you back $6-$10 at Sportman's Warehouse.  It looks like a great call.

Above is the relevant portion of the receipt.  We folded it to keep our personal info private.

 The wolf call itself is obviously VERY well made and a lot of thought has gone into the fine points of its design.
Here's an adjustment you can make to the front of the horn.  The black plastic is covered by a nice camo piece of fitted nylon.  The lanyard length is ample and it is well attached.
 Here's the heart of the call--the reed.  We haven't tried it yet but it looks well made and substantial.
 The reed is covered by two pieces of soft plastic.  The inner cover helps protect the reed while you are calling and also helps protect your lips, too.  The other cover keeps the elements off the reed system.
 Here's a close look at the bonus call.  If you've looked at some of the little distemper predator calls in the store, you can tell right away this is a quality unit.  We really appreciate the lanyard and the way it is securerd to the call.

Our next step is to learn how to use this call.  We will do a separate article on that whole process.

Thanks Again to Hunt Wolves Dot Com!

Wolf Call

As you know, we took a coyote call out for a walk in the woods for Wolf Hunt One.  We figured it was better than nothing.  Obviously, we have a LOT to learn as far as gaining skill with the coyote call.  We still think that mimicking a coyote offers promise as a good way to attract wolves.

However, there's no doubt that a real wolf call is the best way to bring in wolves.  The wolf howl is part of the very DNA that drive wolf behavior.  The howl is to a wolf what an engine and transmission are to a vehicle.  Without and engine and tranny, a vehicle doesn't move.  The same can be said for having a good wolf howl.  That's the way to get them up and moving.

We knew the first moment we laid eyes on their website that we wanted and needed one of the calls sold by Hunt Wolves Dot Com.  We simply didn't have the time before Wolf Hunt One to get our hands on one of these calls.  It's been a priority since the day we got back to get one of these calls.  Today, we got our order in and the call will be coming soon from Moscow, Idaho, right near the heart of the Panhandle's Wolf Country.

The Hunt Wolves Dot Com website is by far and away the finest wolf hunting website in existence.  The folks who keep this website ticking are really doing a great job.  So, when you buy a wolf call from them, you are also helping support the maintenance and updating of a great website.

You can go to their "Store" to check out the various calls they sell.  Here is what John from Hunt Wolves Dot Com had to say about their wolf calls in an email this morning:

"We currently offer two howlers. This howler is our most popular. It is easy to blow and you can blow consistent howls that wolves will respond to after practicing for 15-20 minutes.

This howler probably creates a more realistic howls, and allows you to create much more varied sounds with greater volume, but it is much more difficult to learn to use. If you have a lot of time to practice before your hunt, this howler is probably going to create the best howls, but it is much like a musical instrument that you will need to practice with to become proficient with.

Personally I use the first one, because I still haven't got good enough with the second one, but the guys who have can make some wickedly realistic sounding howls with the second one.  I hope this helps you decide which howler you want."

Be sure to click the link for the Wolf Pack Wolf Call and check out the awesome videos there.

John at Hunt Wolves Dot Com proved to be one of the best online retailers I've ever dealt with.  His Customer Service this morning was absolutely superb in every way.  I am very excited to get my hands (and lips) on this call and hope to get it out in the field right away.

We will post up an article when we receive the call and, naturally, when we actually get to use it in the field.

Thanks, John, we sure appreciate your Customer Service!

Rifle Two

We Thank Dear Friend Mike for the loan of his Savage Model 340 .30-30 for Wolf Hunt One.  The day after our return from the hunt we bought a sweet little Winchester Model 70 Youth Ranger in .308 Winchester.  A bunch of photos of it are below with captions on most of them.

As most of you know, the bullets for .308 are identical to the bullets used in .30-30 rounds except .30-30 lever guns need flat tipped bullets for their tubular magazines.  Frankly, I just like the Model 70 and its iron sights, even though this obviously isn't a pre-'64 Model 70.

Here is a history of the Ranger Model with notes on the Youth Ranger as well:

"The Ranger was introduced in 1985; several sources say it is still in production, but is not currently offered on Winchester’s web site as of the time I write this (mid-August 2011).  It is a simplified version of the M-70 Sporter, less expensive (in real-life terms) than the Sporter, but intended for the same type of work.  The Ranger has plain hardwood stock (most were made of beech) and used a simpler push-type feed.  Originally, the Ranger had no iron sights, relying on buyers to add optics, and did not have a hinged floorplate for the magazine; but these were added in 1990 (with the sights being detachable).  The 7mm Remington Magnum chambering was not introduced until 1997, and the Ranger did in general have less chambering choices than the Sporter.  The lesser-quality wood is a little lighter than that on the Sporter, and the fore-end is simply rounded instead of having a cap.  Like the Sporter, the Ranger has a 24-inch standard-weight barrel.
     Introduced in 1987 and built until 1997, the Ranger Youth & Ladies rifle was a minor variant of the Ranger, differing chiefly in having a shorter, lighter stock with a shorter length of pull and somewhat lighter weight.  It also used some chamberings than the standard Ranger came in. The 5.56mm NATO chambering was discontinued from 1989-97, when it reappeared, accompanied by a 7mm-08 chambering.  Except for this, it is identical to the standard Ranger."


For a thorough introduction to the Model 70, this Wiki article is superb:

One nice thing about any .308 is its ability to use 7.62 x 51 military ammo.  I already have my eye out for some.  It looks like we will start reloading for the .308.  One of our local shooting buddies is going to give me a "hands on" lesson this week.  I also found a local guy selling name-brand .308 bullets for 20 cents a pop.  I am hoping to be able to load for this rifle for about 35 cents a round (not including cost of brass).

We did buy a laser bore sight for the .308 and definitely used it in the Youth Ranger BEFORE we bought the rifle.  There's actually a fun story about how we got this rifle.  We went camping in City of Rocks over Columbus Day weekend.  The day we drove back home, a guy in Burley listed the rifle on KSL.COM out of Salt Lake City.  We probably drove within a few miles of his house on our way home from City of Rocks.

Well, we called and started talking with the seller right away.  We told him we weren't coming to Burley, Idaho, to buy his rifle but if he could somehow get it to Idaho Falls, we'd think about it.  Time passed.  By and by, the seller called and said he had a guy who would bring it to a business in Idaho Falls.  That's how I was able to take a look at it before the purchase.  It was located in a warehouse so we could take the rifle out of its original box and check it out with the laser sighting device.  The original box is a real asset if and when I ever decide to sell this particular rifle.

We intend to do more laser sighting exercises before we take it out to the range.  A storm is coming along soon so it will be later this week when the rifle gets it's first workout.  OK, here's the photos:
 As the Wiki article says, "It has an iconic place in American sporting culture and has been held in high regard by shooters since it was introduced in 1936, earning the moniker "The Rifleman's Rifle."  All of us Baby Boomers grew up drooling over sporting magazine ads for the Model 70.  We show one of the ads at the bottom of this blog post.
 We really do like the three-position safety of the Model 70.
 The classic rear leaf adjustable iron sight is just the ticket for our tired, old eyes.  We know we'd be too clumsy and rough on a scoped rifle, plus we've always had a hard time sighting through a scope.
 We've also always loved the hooded front sight.
Few Youth Rangers were ever sold in .308.  Most of them were chamber for kid and wife friendly .243 and .270.

There it is--New Haven, CT.  Chances are this rifle was produced before the union workers at the plant lost morale and became disgruntled by the corporate shenanigans that finally led to the closure of the plant in March 2006,  a very sad day in American firearms history.   Even though the Belgians who own the WInchester trademark are once again buildings Model 70's, the sticker price starts at $1,000 and goes up steeply from there.  We were able to buy this one for $350, delivered   Yeah, that's a little on the high side but we doubt we will ever see a Youth Ranger in .308 again.  Might as well pay may $50 over fair market value because it's precisely what we wanted in a wolf rifle.
Who can forget these kinds of ads.  Granted, the Youth Ranger isn't a pre-'64 Model 70, but I guarantee you, just hefting ANY Model 70 brings back a lot of childhood memories day dreaming my way through Field & Stream and all the rest of those hunting magazines.

Wolf Hunt One

Wolf Hunt One is history.  We didn't see or hear a wolf or any tracks, scat or other sign.  However, we learned a lot, had a lot of fun and we declare Wolf Hunt One an unqualified success.

The goal of Wolf Hunt One was to get ready for Wolf Hunt Two by finding out everything we would do wrong...or right..or sorta right or wrong.  In that department, this hunt was wildly successful, especially if measured in terms of the things we did wrong.  "Learning by mistake" is a time-honored method of education. 

The second, concurrent goal was to really have some fun and in this department the hunt was even more successful than we suspected it might be.  We actually had as much or more fun hunting wolves than anything else we've done in a really long, long time.  It met the "EEE Test" It was new, different, as well as EEE = Enlightening, Exhilarating and truly Exciting.  (You say "EEE" as in the last syllable of YIPPEE!)

My Sweetie really enjoyed herself as much as I did.  We are both looking forward to our next wolf hunt.
Due to our life's schedule, that might not be until 2013.  Fortunately, we will be much better prepared for the next hunt--whenever it may be--because of everything we learning from Wolf Hunt One.

Below are some photos.  We're less concerned now about having our face become "recognized."  We doubt that could happen without other supporting and identifiable material.  Short comments are below each photo and more narrative is included below the last photo.
  We had a great campsite in the Stoddard Creek Campground.  It was a double site for free.  The USFS had taped over the iron ranger and pulled the fee envelopes.  No charge.  There was only one other hunter in the campground.  Overnight lows were cold and the tep inside the camper dropped to 34.
This is what finally wound up on our belt in addition to the freighter pack and bag of supplies.  We carried the Gerber 650 but also packed Mike Buck Knife in the bag of supplies.  The Bianchi #15 holster and the magazine holder were perfect for this type of usage.
All rigged and ready to roll the first day.  The pack frame and bag were a HUGE Bad Idea.  No way, no how are we going to make that mistake again.  The bag ripped apart right away.  It was totally worthless.
The whole rig was ridiculously heavy and we had to climb over 1000 feet to get to our first calling site.
Hanging around calling is really a lot of fun--FAR more fun that I thought it would be.  It has the "EEE" factors built right into the process.  On eht first day I moved around to several locations to call.  I only succeeded in bring two curious ravens and am inquisitive magpie to the calling site.
The wolf hunter at work.
The first day's terrain was not at all optimal.  I totally misread the habitat values of this country.
On the second day, Sweetie and I did a 50-mil driving loop from camp to scout out the heart of the Pleasant Valley Pack's territory.  We began to think and learn much more about how the wolves will be utilizing their habitat.  Open rolling country with a mosaic of hiding cover and water resources is much more suitable habitat than knife edge ridgelines with 1:1 steep slopes and deep canyons.
Our calling site on the second day was spectacular and much more suitable wolf habitat.  We even managed to scare up four mule deer who fled in haste at the sound of our calling.  The view from this calling site was incredible.  To our left lay the Island Park caldera lip and the entire Grand Teton Range.  The Snake River Plain stretched our across the southern arc with all the prominent volcanic features easy to see.  To the right lay the Italian Peaks and the Lemhi Range with snow-dusted Diamond Peak prominent on the western horizon.  To be able to hang out in such a spot, wailing and calling like a forlorn coyote is simply far more fun that we ever imagined it could possibly be.

We will be making quite a few upcoming posts here to debrief our memory of what we did both right and wrong on this trip.  That's one of the primary purposes of this blog: being a place where we can organize our thought and document our evolution through the learning curve of wolf hunting.

Thanks for reading & Many Cheers!

Wolf Hunt Status

(Update @ 6:30 am 10/17/12) We're on schedule to get out of here by 8 am today.  Naturally, we won't be posting again until we begin to report on various aspects of the experiences that lie ahead over the next couple of days or so.  We're happy to be 99% rigged and ready to roll.  Have a great week and we'll see ya on down the road.
Below is the screen shot of Wednesday morning temps in our region.  The hunt area is to the right of the red "X."  Looks like we will be mid to upper 20's for morning lows.  It's going to be dry and cool each day.  The  red numbers are wind gust speeds.

(Update @ 7 pm 10/16/12)  We kinda figured our readers might be up for a chuckle tonight.  So, here it is--Two Gun Johnny, Circa 1955 in Lafayette, Indiana.  Back then, Two Gun was out gunnin' for whatever came his way.  Unfortunately, being a working class, lunch box, shift-worker neighborhood, the only things that came his way were stray cats--and then not very often.  But he could Dream and dream he did.  Somehow, boy and girls, going Wolf Hunting brings back a lot of Childhood Dreams...And Memories...Fond Memories.

We are very excited, very happy, very prepared and very eager to shoot a wolf.
Two Gun Johnny

(Update @ 2 pm 10/16/12)  Five shots.  That's all the more practice we were able to squeeze a trigger to.
We thought we saw a window in the storm so we hot-footed it out to the range.  A very ominous almost black wall hung low on the west desert horizon.  The wind was putting up sheets of opaque brown dust from the freshly tilled potato fields.  As I backed the Samurai into the range bay, drops of water started spitting from the sky.  I hurried as fast as possible and got off three shots at 25 yards, each almost exactly high and to the left by the same 3 inches.  Then the skies opened and the wind picked up and it was blowing dust and rain horizontal right into my eyes.  The first of three shells jammed so I only got off two more shots.  I aimed low and to the right 3 inches and then hurried to put the rifle in the passenger seat before it became as drenched as my jeans and shirt.  I was pleased to see both shots were within an inch of the homemade crosshairs on the cardboard.

There was barely any time to throw stuff in the truck before it REALLY cut loose.  WHEW!

I wasn't able to adjust the rear sight so that the rifle will shoot to Point of Aim.  All I can hope is that I can adjust enough low and to the right for whatever distance I might hope to see one of these creatures at.  I'm figuring as much as 6-7 inches in the 50-100 yard range.

Next year, we're going to have a well-tested rifle that shoots precisely to Point of Aim.  This year, it's totally Pot Luck--"luck" being the key word here, as in "beginner's luck."

The weather really turned a lot worse than progged here today.  it's a danged good thing we already changed our plans.  Being inside a warm, cozy house with a forced air furnace is a real good thing right now.

PS--Don't worry, we wiped and oiled the rifle immediately upon our arrival home and also ran an oiled patch through the bore.  First things first, ya know.

(Update @ 8 am 10/16/12) Slight change in plans as of this morning.  Our Original Plan A was to leave late this afternoon and hope to get up to camp by 5-6 pm tonight.  Likewise, we weren't planning on juping out at the crack of dawn tomorrow but rather to begin in mid-morning.

Well, it's raining and blowing an being typical Idaho right now and it's progged to keep being blustery all day and into the evening with winds gusting to 50 mph.  The Continental Divide area is progged to get even more rain that we are down here on the plain.  Meanwhile, the next two days are progged as dry and cold with light winds--perfect wolf hunting weather.

Soooo....all things being equal, we're going to leave about 8 am tomorrow and should be set up in camp and out hunting about the same time as originally pegged in Plan A.  There's no point in driving through a mini-gale with direct 90-degree cross winds late this afternoon if we don't have to.  Likewise, there's no point in setting up camp in a driving, wind-driven, cold rain if we don't have to.

Our actual hunt will proceed as planned during the same time frames as originally envisioned.

The only problem with the rain is that it's highly unlikely we will be able to spend more time sighting in the rifle.  We sure hope there's a small break in the rain this afternoon so we can send some more rounds down range.

(Update @ 7 pm 10/15/12)  Mid-October has always been a special time for me going as far back as I can remember.  This year's no exception.  Who'd a thunk Little Yonni would be almost all packed up today to howl off into the wild wolf yonder in search of the Big Bad Canine Carnivore?  Even a couple of months ago, if you would have asked me if I would like to go hunt wolves, I would have looked at you like you're nuts.  My, my, how things change.

We finally have all our PPE purchased and packed.  Dear Friend Mike loaned us a much better knife.  When Dear Friend Wes was here in July we visited a local gun shop and I found a great $10 Bianchi holster with a retainer strap for the Bonomo Custom 1911.  Wearing that this trip will give me a lot of confidence the pistol will still be there whenever I might need it.  Kydex retention holsters are great for IDPA matches and casual concealed carry around town but ya gotta wonder how good they would be on a hunting trip.

We did take a recreational break today and visited a shooting buddy's today to load 100 rounds of .38 Special on his Dillon 550B.  Bill loads everything and he's good at it.  I learned a lot watched him manipulate that Dillion so easily.  I miss shooting .38 Special.  But I digress.

Anyway, we won't be leaving until late tomorrow afternoon so there's plenty of time to continue packing.  The most important thing that remains is another trip to the range to shoot that .30-30 some more.  I've only shot two rounds through it so far.  That's not really a lot of practice with a new-to-me rifle.  Maybe I ought to shoot at least a couple more rounds.  You think?

Thanks for reading.  We will put up at least one more update tomorrow before taking off.  Be sure to read "The Irony" below.

(Update @ 8 pm 10/14/12) 'Twas a productive day.  We accomplished almost everything on our list.  The biggest item we crossed off was "hunt food."  Since we're gonna be "outstanding in our field" for quite a long time Wednesday and a pretty medium decent amount of time Thursday, we figured we might as well put some time and effort into rustling up some good grub.  Mission accomplished.

My Sweetie likes to joke that we go camping so we can eat "camp food."  Well, there's a lot of truth to that. What would camping be without bacon, for example?  We eat a lot of stuff when we're camping that we don't eat at home.  Well, we're starting a new tradition, so we might as well have some "hunt food."  Maybe if it's good enough, we will want to hunt more so we can eat "hunt food."

We've changed out the Back Up Gun Plan. We're no longer going to carry the Taurus PT145.  Nope, we're going with the Bonomo Custom 1911.  Yeah, it's heavier and that's an issue.  The bottom line is that we have six mags for the 1911 and only one mag for the PT145.  After watching that video of the wolves taking down that coyote, we decided we would like to have AT LEAST six magazines with us during these hunts.

I can sure see why some guys prefer to hunt wolves with an automatic rifle.  We're beginning to think an semi-automatic .30-06 or a semi-auto .308 like a Saiga might be the way to go next year.  It wasn't all that long ago when I was thinking an AR-15 with the right load would be OK.  Nah, I don't think so.  It has to be at least a .30 caliber with a HOT load behind the bullet for those Big Dogs.  I missed a chance to get a great Saiga .308 the other day for $400 and I am already kicking myself about it.  Too bad those .45-70 guide guns have such a limited range.  The slugs in those .45-70's are kind of like cruise missiles.

It's going to be real interesting when we get into the field.  You can bet I am going to choose my calling sites VERY carefully.  I want my back totally covered.  If I can't get a good feeling about my backside, I will keep moving until I find a solid defensive position before I bring that coyote call out of my pocket.  I've read that even if you are a "bad caller" there's something primal that gets triggered in a canid's brain by certain sounds.  Man, if they come running like they did on that coyote in the video, I definitely want to be prepared!

---end of 8 pm update---

(Update @ 10 am 10/14/12) Spending Sunday morning working with electronics.  We're charging the cell phone, AA batteries, lith-ion batteries, checking the GPS (batteries were totally dead); checking the 2-meter HAM handheld, making sure we have a functional LED flashlight, etc.

We used Google Earth to determine the Point of Beginning of the Long Loop and then input those long/lats into our GPS.  We dusted off the dormant HAM radio and checked its batteries and made sure we had notes about the frequencies in its carrier.  It's going to be VERY "iffy" whether than handheld would get out to a 2-meter repeater.  The most likely possibility might be Sawtell Peak in Island Park.  Rexburg might also be a possibility.  The cell phone is highly unlikely to work but "ya never know."  We will have the HAM radio along for a total "worst case scenario."  If Search & Rescue personnel were looking for us, we would have the simplex frequency turned on.

We can't give our HAM call sign here because it would make it insanely easy to learn our name and actual street address.  That's the one thing I really don't like about the FCC HAM database.  If someone knows your call sign, you are definitely NOT anonymous!

We're not taking any chances when it comes to preparedness. Heck, if this trend keeps up, maybe we better buy some Hornady Zombie Max rounds.  Them danged zombies!

(Update @ 9 pm 10/13/12) Been a busy prep day.  Heck, I can't even remember everything.  I focused on PPE and have that pretty well under control.  There's a blog post below about PPE.

I found a buck fifty sling for the rifle and you can see the sling under the rifle post. I also filed a Hunt Plan.  Susun has a Ladies Night here before they all went to the Symphony so I stayed in the basement and rigged my freighter pack.  It's pretty well under control.

At this point, we're pretty much getting ready.  There's not that many details to tend to.  I clearly need more rifle sight-in time and also time on the Song Dog coyote call.  Also, mysteriously, the Gerber 650 vaporized so I am now going to have to borrow a skinning knife.

Meanwhile, we have to pack the camper and rig the Samurai to tow.  On Monday we are going up to Rigby to reload a bunch of .38 Special for the ICORE snubbie Match on 10/20.  On Tuesday morning, we have to continue to train for the IDPA Classifier 10/21.

Meanwhile, we are driving outta here Tuesday afternoon and wolf hunting on Wednesday.  Done deal.
So, that means tomorrow is going to be your basic wild & crazy Rigging Day.

We really didn't have to bite off all this stuff this late in our Idaho Season.  We did so because we wanted to do so.  We're going wolf hunting Wednesday and that's really all that matters.  Everything else takes a back seat.

Life is Good!  Many Cheers, jp

PS--Thanks, TOM!

(Update @ 7 pm 10/11/12)  We've found this update format works well. Simply tack on an update.

Yesterday, we wrote a long narrative describing our first visit to Dubois.  It was a tremendous success.  Later than evening we picked up the Savage 340 and put up photos of it this morning in the "Rifle" post below.  After picking up the rifle we went to Sportman's and bought a box of .30-30 ammo and a coyote call.

Here's the deal.  We think it's best to make a plan and stick to it.  The plan might be right or it might be wrong--but it's our plan and we're sticking to it.  So, the plan is to attempt to call in the wolves by pretending to be a coyote.  (See rancher's observation in Dubois Visit One below.)  It's kind of a stretch to make a plan based on one guy's observations but it feels right to us.

We kinda think the Pleasant Valley pack feels like they have some viable competition from coyotes.  Afterall, coyotes RULED that area long before wolves were introduced and multiplied and divided and went exponential.  (Excuse the higher math.)  So, it's only natural for us to think wolves in that area have a chip on their "huff & puff" because of the prior Rulers--The Coyotes.

Today, we took the 340 to the range and put precisely two rounds through it at 50 yards.  We were using a modified seated position.  Dear Friend Mike said it shot high and to the left for him at 100 yards and, yep, it sure did the same thing at 50 yards.  We will try and post up a photo of the target.

we plan on shooting only one or two rounds each visit to the range up to a maximum of 15 practice rounds.  We're going to save 5 rounds out of the box for the actual hunting trip.  That sum total of 5 rounds pretty much sums up our expectations of success this year.  You have to realize we're looking at this year's hunt with an entirely different perspective.  We weren't even planning to hunt this year--it was all about next year.  Then we realized we could somehow get it together for this year and, well...the rest is history.  We're going to write a separate piece entitled "One Round" and it will tell you everything about why we are only saving 5 rounds for the actual hunt.

Well, we bought our first coyote call last night and then went out and bought three more today so we've got $50 invested in coyote calls now.  I keep thinking if I took all this money and bought Powerball tickets I'd be a LOT better off.  That thought nags me a LOT, Dang it.

Anyway, I decided to actually try to USE the coyote call today.  My Sweetie was gone so I thought it would be OK to fill the house with the Call of The Coyote.  After a few bleats I decided I would try to get a rise out of the neighborhood dogs and go into the back yard and do my best coyote karaoke routine.

SO I started woofing through the call and, Man, I really, REALLY pissed off this big red fox squirrel.  He practically flew down out of the branches like Super Squirrel and took up a tactical defensive position on an Alpha Branch of a tree and he turned and hunkered down and freaking started BARKING at me.  I'm not kidding.  Barking like a freaking dawg!  Now I grew up as a squirrel hunter.  I know squirrels.  I tell you what, if the hillbillies back in Stumpwater Country knew a coyote call could make a fox squirrel come out and expose itself like this one did, the entire SQUIRREL NATION PARADIGM would change.  Squirrels would become an endangered species overnight.

I don't know that I will ever be a successful woof hunter but I can tell you I have the magic voodoo on red fox squirrels!

My Sweetie learned about this and decided she would change my new acronym.  If you've read the Dubois report from yesterday, you know I have adopted the WHIT persona.  Yeah, I am a Wolf Hunter In Training.

Well, My Sweetie heard about the whole coyote call gig with the squirrel and decided I was a Squirrel Hunter In Training.  Without further ado, I present to you that acronym:  SHIT

That pretty well sums up my day.
---end of 7 pm update---
As of Tuesday evening, October 9th, here's the current status of our first wolf hunt.
  • We will be hunting the Pleasant Valley Pack NW of Spencer, Idaho.  See post below.
  • We secured a loaner rifle from Dear Friend Mike.  It's a Savage 340 as described in a post below.
  • We bought our hunting license and wolf tag today
  • We checked in with Idaho Dept. Fish & Game concerning the wolf skin to be checked
  • We've begun to assemble various hunting gear.  See various posts below.
  • We are planning to visit Dubois, Idaho, to begin accumulating information.
  • We are planning to hunt October 16-19
We need to buy and practice one or two predator calls.  We need to buy and pack various PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) as well as a pulley and lightweight rope with which to hang the wolf for skinning.  We need to buy ammo and sight in the loaner rifle.

We've made good progress in the last few days.  We are pleased.

The Irony

Now, this is a ironic story, maybe even a little too ironic.  There's two ways to tell this story: the short and the long.  We have no time tonight so you get the short version.

I was born and raised in Tippecanoe County, Indiana.  Yep, you guess it--that's the site of the famous and truly pivotal Battle of Tippecanoe. )  Trust me, it was one helluva real battle.  I grew up on that battle field.  I go there ever time I return to Indiana.  I was just roaming that battle field this past Christmas Day.  It's a personal shrine to me in ways that are far beyond the scope of this blog post.

Anyway, the battle site has been famous practically since the battle ended in November 1811, nearly 201 years ago.  So famous, in fact, that people quickly built a little town there naturally called Battle Ground.  It even has its own Zip Code: 47920.  Susun's even been to Battle Ground--more than once even.

Beginning back sometime in the late 1960's, I started a tradition of going to Prophet's Rock to howl like a wolf.  I carried on this tradition well into the 1990's and, even last Christmas, I let out a few low volume howls there at Prophet's Rock.

OK, OK, get to the point, will ya?  Well, a few years after I started hanging out near Battle Ground howling like a wolf, along comes this guy who eventually founded Wolf Park, right smack dab in Battle Ground, Indiana. They keep wild wolves on the premises and make a living selling tickets to people who want to see and howl with wolves.  I am not making this up.  You can click here to go to their website:

And, yessiree, you can even hear the wolves howl, right here on your very own internet:

Why, you can even order an full hour's worth of wolf howling for and get it delivered for under $20!

It sure looks to me like I will be able to take this CD into the field and patch it into an audio system and have some amazing wolf howling going on with the flick of a remote switch.

So, my favorite place of all places in my boyhood home now comes full circle and will indirectly be helping me hunt wolves in Idaho.

Oh, The Irony of it all.

Hunt Weather

The above graphic is the five-day QPF.  QPF = Quantative Precipitation Forecast. The numbers are in inches.
Idaho is just going to be barely brushed by the Big Storm gobsmacking Vancouver Island and the British Columbia Coast.  In a nutshell, Tuesday is going to be very windy, Wednesday will be much cooler with a pretty good chance of precipitation, although it is likely to be light. Thursday looks drier and slightly warmer.

High Temps on Wednesday will probably be in the 40's and might never get out of the 30's. Our camp is 6400 feet and the highest point of the long loop is 8400 feet. The general location of our hunt area is marked by the red "X."

Below in italics is what both the Missoula and Pocatello NWS Offices have to say about the upcoming weather.  Missoula is first.  Pocatello is in ALL CAPS--that's the way they type.  We have bolded the portions relevant to our area.

(Missoula NWS)  Model guidance continues to depict a powerful Pacific jet stream moving across the Northern Rockies from Monday through Wednesday. This intense FLOW aloft from the west will translate to gusty winds at the surface, particularly during the day on Tuesday.

There is little question of the impact that widespread gusty winds will have, especially for those traveling through the area with high profile vehicles that are susceptible to cross winds. However, the question of how strong the winds will become remains a bit uncertain. Model guidances have played down wind speed somewhat for locations such as Kalispell and Missoula, but are depicting a brief, yet strong wind event for both Grangeville and Butte. 

The strongest and most impactful winds will likely be found near a surface cold FRONT, anticipated to pass across north central Idaho and western Montana during Tuesday morning through early afternoon hours. Those planning on recreating on Flathead Lake.  Monday through Wednesday should be prepared for wave heights 3 to 5 feet during daylight hours. Another factor at play during this coming week will be the Pacific moisture, likely to provide rainfall amounts exceeding one inch for some mountain locations such as Lookout Pass and Glacier Park. 

The intense winds from the west will create a relative rain shadow effect for much of the broad valleys of the region, limiting precipitation amounts. The relatively warm nature of this system will keep much of the precipitation as rain except for the highest elevations.

 High Pressure will be present over the Northern Rockies Wednesday evening through Thursday. Following a particularly cold morning Thursday, conditions will dry and warm somewhat, especially noticeable at higher elevations. Stable air and temperature inversions will slowly develop for valley locations, with haze on the increase. 

Lingering showers are possible, but will be confined to high elevations along the Continental Divide.
---end of Missoula NWS---
---end of Pocatello NWS---

Watch out for the umbles: “You start to stumble, mumble, bumble, and grumble,” says Cappaert.

What's that quote from?  Why, a short article on hypothermia.  We like the little ditty above and it's going to find a place in our daily volcabulary--at least when we are hiking during cold and/or wet weather.

What Wolves Do To A Coyote

Opps, this coyote made a BIG mistake. It was the LAST mistake of this Song Dog's life.

Emergency Preparedness

Things can and often do go wrong.  Even though time is running short between Sunday, October 14th when we are writing this post and our upcoming hunt on October 17, Emergency Preparedness weighs heavily on our minds.

The "what if" factor nags at us.  There are a whole lot of "what if's" in this enterprise, especially since we are hunting alone.

How will we be able to call for help if we need it?  We have two options.

First is the good ol 'cell phone.  There ought to be line of sight from our ridge-top-route to a cell tower along I-15.  After all, the Continental Divide is very nearby, so there "should" be a cell signal.  "Should" being the key word here.

Next is our HAM 2-meter handheld.  We have a hot rod antenna for it and have reached out 70+ miles across the Snake River Plain in past exercises.  If we are line-of-sight to a repeater, we can reach it.

Luckily, the Sawtell Peak repeater is only 42 miles (plus or minus) from our hunting routes.  Sawtell stands at 9906 feet, more than 4000 feet above the Island Park caldera floor.  The red line in the graphic below connects the approx. mid point of our hunt routes to Sawtell.  It appears that the line-of-sight runs south of the Centennial Mountains that form the Continental Divide in that vicinity.  It's going to be "very interesting" to see if we can "get out" with the handheld from our hunt area.

Even if we can't, we will still carry the handheld in case S&R is coming to look for us.  We can talk to them on the Simplex frequency--146.52 and that should help a lot.

We will carry some rudimentary first aid, bombproof fire starter, a space blanket and a real nice LED flashlight gifted to us by Dear Friend Gary.  Barring the total unforeseen, we should be OK. "Should" being the key word here.

Here's a link to a glimpse of Sawtell Peak

Bear Spray

Bear Spray is a fundamental requirement of venturing into this neck of the woods.  Don't leave home without it.  It could easily save your life.  Pistols are basically worthless with bears.  Studies have shown pistols are only 50% effective with bears while spray is generally 90% effective.  (Pity the poor ten percent.)

We have been working with a local leather shop to get a decent bear spray holster designed.  This was the first draft version she made in 2009.  Geeze, three year, huh?  Yeah, it's a slow process.  She's made two more drafts and we are waiting on draft #4.  In the meantime we will carry draft #1 on the belt and carry our spare spray in the pack.  Yep, the prevailing advice up here is: "If one canister of spray is good, two is better."

One of our buddies went on an Alaskan walk this summer where the guide carried a .45-70 "guide gun."  If .45-70 wasn't so limited in its range, we'd be carrying one of those on our wolf hunts.  The .45-70 is deadly at 50 yards--beyond that, YMMV.  It's HIGHLY unlikely I will be able to coax the Big Bad Wolf in under 50 yards.  I'm not real sure I'd want to be that close to an Alpha Male wolf and his pack.  Maybe 70-100 yards but 50?  Um...maybe not.

Well, anyway, the trouble with bears is they generally get in your face.  That's why bear spray is so effective. if you have the huevos to be able to actually draw and use your bear spray properly without falling to the ground as a slobbering, sobbing bear appetizer, you have a pretty good chance of survival.  Dear Friend Gary and I have actually practiced using bear spray.  Imagine that.  Actually, there's a lot more to using bear spray than you would think.

Speaking of think--don't even THINK of going into Bear Country without bear spray.  Got that?


Here are a three general facts about calling wolves:

  • There are a bewildering array of theories.
  • Ba-zillions of types of calls exist.
  • It takes lots of practice to get good at it.
So what are we supposed to do with limited time?  Simple.  Make some decisions and GO!

There are three basic theories of calling wolves:

  1. Sound like prey, especially elk.
  2. Sound like an enemy, especially a coyote.
  3. Sound like a fellow wolf.
We decided to take choice #2.  Why?  Well, two reasons:

  1. The name of the call was irresistable.
  2. We will be able to use the call in Arizona.
More than 20 years ago, Dear Friend Goatherder and I were in the salsa business together.  The name of the salsa and the business was "Song Dog Salsa."  Back then, people asked, "What's Song Dog mean?"  Goatherder would patiently explain that's just another name for a coyote and our salsa was howling good, so....

Naturally, when I was looking at the dozens upon dozens of calls at Sportsman's, I immediately spotted the Song Dog call.  Yeah, well, duh...kind of a no-brainer there.  It sealed the deal that the $23 call was on closeout for $14.  Just to be safe, I bought both of the remaining calls.

We have a couple of photos and two scans below.  Here is the description of the Song Dog:

"The Song Dog was designed with the best features and use characteristics of all Crit'R•Call models to make coyote vocalizations. The Song Dog makes great lone howls, group howls, challenge barks, ki-yi calls, whines, whimpers, and combinations of all coyote sounds. It provides excellent range from very quiet sounds to howls which can be heard three miles away. It is sold in a kit with 5 reeds, 3 reed blocks, 2 reed bands, 2 extensions, and a 54-page instruction book on how to call coyotes with howls, barks, yelps, and whines. The book identifies coyote vocabulary, instructs you on how to make the sounds, when to use them, and what to do to respond to coyotes that reply to the caller. The book provides the caller with highly successful methods which have been used for 50 years by predator-control professionals. Used with quality rabbit distress calls, fawn bleats, and other prey sounds, coyote talk becomes the clincher in bringing call-shy coyotes into range. It is terrific on windy days and when calling in timber and heavy cover.

The Song Dog is also a terrific main-line prey distress call. It makes excellent rabbit squalls, pig squalls, doe bleats, and other fox and coyote sounds. It is available in blaze-orange and sand colors. Size:  6" x 7/8".
Price: $23"

You will undoubtedly get a kick out of this cartoon here:

OK, on to the photos & scans:
 Here's most of the calling outfit.  The call comes with a 53-page great booklet--two pages are excerpted below.  Note the extra reeds at right.  Also, I found a "call holder" at the thrift store for 50 cents.  It fits perfectly in the sleeve pocket of the camo jacket.
 You can click on either scan for a much more readable version.  We posted these at half-meg quality so just click om them to be able to read them.  The top is a table of the various coyote calls.
 We really like this "Joy of Life" call and hope we can duplicate it.  It will be the most fun to use when we are standing around the campfire at Second Chance Ranch trying to trick the trickster coyotes into running across the Montezuma Well pasture.  Nah, we won't shoot 'em there--we'll just mess with their heads.
Finally, here's a story.  Back when I was a wee tyke, my Dad liked to collect old muzzle loader powder horns--you know, the honest, real thing--a bovine horn fashioned into a powder container.  He acquired quite a few powder horns (and flasks).  He also found this "blank."  I think he bought it back about 1957, plus or minus.  Knowing him, he probably paid a buck or two for it and then complained he had paid too much.  He was ahead of his time in that regard.

Anyway, I was roaming one of the many predator calling forums online the other day and someone said the Song Dog would perform a LOT better if you put a cow horn to it.  Hum...

So I got to wondering if somehow I could possibly find this artifact in the boxes of various artifacts culled from my former boyhood Indiana home.  As if by a bolt of lightning, I went almost straight to this form and found it within the first 10 minutes of looking through boxes.  Amazing.  And, guess what?  The horn DEFINITELY amps up the Song Dog and adds a depth of realism the little plastic thingie simply couldn't do otherwise.

I've been testing it out in the backyard and I can get all the neighborhood dogs to bark.  I've also pissed off one large male fox squirrel and scared the sh*t out of another one.  Our 70-something neighbor is a bag pipe player and instructor so I am going to get a few pointers from him tomorrow.

Tom & Goatherder have already indicated their interest in engaging Wily Coyote this winter so we're hoping by Wolf Season of 2013 we will be MUCH better as using this thing.  Maybe even my Sweetie will want to use the second unit I bought so we can sing a Song Dog duet!