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TOP STORIES

  • What's Next

    We asked our experts to peer into the future of hunting, fishing, and conservation. Here’s what they see.

  • Best Reader Photos, March

    Check out the 25 best shots from our readers and submit your photos for the chance to win gear.

  • Bowfishing Gear

    The only required gear for bowfishing is a fish arrow tied to a line that’s tied to a bow. But good gear does make it more fun and productive. These items are definitely worth having.

  • The Real Fly Girls

    Meet seven women with the chops and attitude to infiltrate the industry boys' club and wade into the mainstream.

  • Bowfishing Rigs Test

    Don't trash your whitetail bow shooting carp, suckers, and gar. Get a dedicated bowfishing rig.

  • The Drone Report

    Some sportsmen have started using unmanned aircraft for hunting and fishing applications. But, where do we draw the fair-chase line?

  • Small-Stream Smallies

    If you live in bronzeback country, small streams could be your best chance at big fish. Here's how to target them.

  • Early-Season Streamer Tactics

    There's nothing quite like that angry tug you get when fishing big baitfish and leech streamer patterns for trout.

  • Turkey Freaks

    Lots of folks love turkey hunting, but these 4 guys are totally nuts about it, as in gone-for-three-months, drive-all-night, no-sleep, forget-married-life crazy about spring gobblers.

 

Top Picks

  • April 3, 2014

    Outdoor Survival: First-Aid Kits

    By David E. Petzal

    I was asked what’s in my first-aid kit. Since I don’t remember, and I’m too lazy to dig it out, I’ll give you some general rules about first-aid kits that will be more useful than an item-by-item rundown.

    Don’t think about a first-aid kit as a fixed and immutable object. The kit should expand and contract, depending on where you’re going, what you’re likely to encounter, and how long will it take to get to a doctor, or have a doctor get to you. I have two first-aid kits, one for hunts, which are in close proximity to civilization, and the other for places like Alaska, where you may be left to your own devices if something happens. This saves me the trouble of re-building a single first-aid kit over and over.  Whatever you take, it should be small enough that you can keep it with you. My small kit is a little bigger than a fist and fits in a fanny pack with no trouble. The larger one is the size of maybe two fists. Package it in something waterproof, like a Ziplock bag, or better, the rollup Velcro-seal plastic bags sold in camping-supply stores. [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 2, 2014

    Controversial Wyatt Earp Guns Up for Auction

    9

    By Ben Romans

    Guns that reportedly belonged to Wyatt Earp, one of the most iconic figures of the Old West, are slated to go on the auction block on April 17 at the J. Levine Auction & Appraisal in Scottsdale, Ariz.
     
    The owner of the auction house, Josh Levine, told the Arizona Republic the collection also includes guns owned by Virgil Earp and their grandfather. But the centerpiece is a .45 caliber revolver Earp descendants say he carried in Tombstone, Ariz.; possibly at the infamous shootout at the O.K. Corral.
     
    “This is American history here — and not only is it that, it's Western folklore... This gun, the O.K. Corral shootout, it's lived on where other stories have not stood the test of time,” Levine said. [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 2, 2014

    The Elusive Blue Trout of Pennsylvania

    By Joe Cermele

    Genetically modified Palamino or Golden trout have always been a prized catch in the areas I grew up fishing in Jersey and Pennsylvania. But to be completely honest with you, they never did much for me. I never found them pretty and they weren't something I was dying to catch, though I have many comical memories of watching swarms of crazed anglers bombing a poor Palamino in a hole with every kind of bait and lure in their vests. I think the fact that the fish stick out like sore thumbs in most waters contributed to the loss of luster in my mind. However, if you dig hooking those orangey-white slobs, I've got a new quest for you: the elusive Pennsylvania blue trout.

    [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 2, 2014

    Video: Kayaker vs Shark

    By Ben Romans

    Angler Jason Downs was working a hooked grouper from his kayak when a bull shark broke the water’s surface next to his kayak and stole the fish.

    He was fishing off Florida’s Navarre Beach and managed to film the incident. He said the fact the shark stole the grouper made him more angry than scared.
     
    “To be honest, my first reaction was anger,” Downs explained in an email to GrindTV Outdoor. “The reason I muted the video after the shark took my grouper was not because I was cussing out of fear; it was because I was cussing at the shark for taking my grouper! [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 2, 2014

    96-Year-Old Nebraska Waterfowl Guide to Retire

    5

    By Phil Bourjaily

    The end of this year’s spring snow goose season also marks the end of Ralph Kohler’s career as a Missouri River waterfowl guide. At 96, the Tekamah, Neb., guide is a living legend among Midwestern waterfowlers. Kohler began guiding hunters near Omaha when he was 16 years old, often hunting every day of Nebraska’s duck and goose seasons. He is retiring to move to California to be closer to his family.

    Kohler spent more than 45,000 hours in a blind and kept records of every hunt he made over the years. He is credited with making the first full-body goose decoy, the now-collectible K and W, which he made out of paper mache in his garage. Kohler and Dorothy, his wife of 79 years, were the only husband and wife to earn All American honors in trapshooting. They also competed successfully in ballroom dance competition throughout the country. [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 2, 2014

    My Favorite Online Fishing April Fool's Day Gags

    5

    By Tim Romano

    As every new April Fool's day comes and goes, the internet hoaxes seem to get more prevalent and elaborate. I was had by my mom (just briefly) and few jokes online today. Here are a few of my favorites from the fishing world.

    1. YETI Coolers sent a press release that was titled "YETI Launches Casket for Die-Hard Outdoor Enthusiasts." [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 1, 2014

    App Review: Gogal's GPS Topo USA

    7

    By Kirk Deeter

    Granted, sometimes you want to get out in the wild to intentionally get lost and be out of touch.  But then again, it's always nice to have at least a hint of where you are going.  I get to test a number of GPS and navigation devices, some of which cost hundreds of dollars, but the GPS Topo USA from Gogal Publishing is a simple iPhone (or iPad) app that I've taken a shine to because it costs $6.99, and it can be used either online or offline.

    [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 1, 2014

    Lawsuit Filed Against Mining Exploration on Montana's Smith River

    7

    By Sarah Grigg

    In the same week that some anglers received coveted lottery permits to float Montana's iconic Smith River—a bucket list experience for many trout anglers—environmental groups filed a lawsuit to prevent mining exploration near its headwaters.

    [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 1, 2014

    Gear Test: 4 Top Red Dot Sights

    5

    By Slaton L. White


    Photo by Satoshi

    When a gobbler's glowing head pops up, a red-dot sight helps you put him down. All last season, our testers evaluated four models to see which performed best.

    [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 1, 2014

    Opt For White Or Chartreuse Plastics When Fishing Bass Beds

    1

    By Joe Cermele

    http://ak.c.ooyala.com/lncGNpbDoC7A5pqGCktT_2tB13LEvNNC/QCdjB5HwFOTaWQ8X4xMDoxOjA4MTsiGN

     

    While hunting for bass beds in the clear waters of Arizona's Lake Pleasant just a few weeks ago, guide Dale Merry of The Hook Up Outfitters surprised me by tying all the rods up with white or chartreuse plastics. Being not as well-versed in fishing bedded bass as I probably should be, I asked why he liked these colors. His answer made a lot of sense. Check out the short video to find out why these hues are his spring-time go-tos.

    [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 1, 2014

    Turkey Hunting: Sit or Sneak on a Flocked-Up Tom

    0

    By Dave Hurteau

    Flocked-up birds? Toms not leaving hens? Here are two ways to fill your tag anyway.

    As I hunted Nebraska's Pine Ridge with Allen Williams of Dos Plumas Hunting Ranch last year, bitter weather lingered into early spring and kept the turkeys on a mostly winter pattern. Huge flocks of hens hung tightly together. Although the shadowing toms would gobble and strut, there was no luring them away from all those girls—no matter how sweet our turkey calling. We certainly tried, but eventually, we switched to a pair of less conventional tactics to get shotgun-close to those cold-weather toms.

    [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 1, 2014

    Video: Can You Spot the Mountain Lion?

    By Ben Romans

    Eric Martin was recently hunting for bobcats with a decoy and predator call and had his video camera rolling when a much larger cat showed up on the scene.

    In this short clip, it looks like the lion seemingly materializes from the brush. But later review reveals that it was actually present through most of the scene. If you enlarge, view at the highest quality setting, and look closely, you can see the cougar enter the frame in the first few moments of the footage. Obviously confused by the decoy, the cat approaches with caution and doesn’t waste time retreating when it realizes the ruse. [ Read Full Post ]

  • April 1, 2014

    Surfboard and Boat Innovator Hobart 'Hobie' Alter Dies at 80

    3

    By Ben Romans

    Surfboard pioneer and founder of the Hobie fishing company, Hobart “Hobie” Alter, passed away at his Palm Desert, California home on March 29. He was 80 years old.

    The son of a second-generation orange farmer, Hobie spent most of his youth in the garage of his family’s Laguna Beach summer home where he combined his two loves — wood working and water — crafting handmade 9-foot balsawood surfboards for his friends. [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 31, 2014

    March Madness: The Elite Eight of Whitetail Shotguns

    7

    By Dave Hurteau

    Kentucky is not the only 8-seed to move on. In a head-scratcher of an upset (on par with the .30-06 winning last year's Long-Range Whitetail Cartridge Championship) the tricky-to-scope and not-particularly-tack-driving yet classic Browning Auto 5 has thumped the 1-seed Savage 220/212 bolt with it's excellent trigger and stellar reputation for accuracy—and affordable accuracy at that. Go figure. [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 31, 2014

    On Low-Down, Dirty, Bass Tourney Cheaters

    By Dave Wolak

    A few weeks ago while fishing a bass tournament on California's El Capitan Reservoir, a competitor dredged up the contraption in the photo below. Per this story on SDFish.com, some folks believe it's a lure retriever. Others, however, think that the heavy weights on one end, nylon rope on the other, and addition of stringer clips points to it being a device meant to keep fish alive and hidden until tourney day. Honestly, I'm never shocked by the lengths people will go just to make a few bucks in a weekend tournament. What's even more depressing is that I don't think I've ever fished a tournament where someone wasn't accused of doing something illegal, or at least something against the rules. These claims are not always directed at the winner, nor are they always true, but the perpetual mentality is that there's always someone doing something shady.  

    [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 31, 2014

    Rifle Ammo: Hanged by the Neck

    By David E. Petzal

    A friend of mine has just returned from his first trip to Africa and, as all such hunters do, is now walking around with his eyes fixed on a distant continent, plotting how to get back. (The place does get a hold on you.) He was hunting for plains game, and brought along a .300 Winchester Short Magnum, loaded with Swift Sciroccos, which performed peerlessly. However, he experienced a problem that comes up very often, particularly with short-necked cases like the .300 WSM—the bullets slipped forward in the case and one of them eventually jammed its little meplat in the rifling causing all sorts of problems.

    If you’re not aware of this when it happens, you’ll yank the bolt back and the bullet will come out of the case, spilling powder everywhere and leaving you to find a cleaning rod to drive the slug out. It happened to me on an elk hunt in Colorado, using 250-grain .338 factory loads with a very long, then-experimental bullet. I barked and roared like a berserk baboon. [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 31, 2014

    What's the Craziest Way You've Ever Crossed a River?

    7

    By Kirk Deeter

    I've crossed rivers in boats and simply walking to get to an eating fish. I've also crossed them with less traditional means like stand-up boards, kayaks, beach balls, and inflatable blow up dolls. No joke on that last one.

    This video from Live Leak however takes things to a whole new level.

    [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 31, 2014

    How to Cure a Gun-Shy Puppy

    4

    By Jerome B. Robinson


    Photo by Dan Saelinger

    When puppies are surprised by loud noises, they may become shy for life. Prevent this by teaching yours that violent sounds mean something good is about to happen. Here’s how:

    Step 1: Ding the Dinner Dish. This may scare him, but he will immediately overcome his initial fear as he dives into his bowl. Move on to step 2 when he starts wagging his tail at the sound. [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 28, 2014

    Deer Hunting Tip: Cut Your Shooting Lanes Now

    3

    By Tony J. Peterson

    Last November I hung a portable stand in a peninsula of high woods that jutted into a cattail slough. During the first sit I noticed a single red osier dogwood that blocked a 20-yard shot to the best trail through the sawgrass. As soon as I called it quits I snuck out to the dogwood, snipped it clean and left.
       
    The following evening I sat the stand again and readied myself to fill an antlerless tag as a doe noisily walked through the slough. When she hit the spot I had trimmed, her eyes bugged out and she back-peddled. She offered no shot as she walked stiff-legged back into the cattails. Nearly 30 hours had passed since I’d handled that brush with gloved hands, yet it was more than enough to turn the doe inside out. [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 28, 2014

    Slide Show: Arizona Bass and an Epic Day of Carp Fishing

    1

    By Tim Romano

    A couple of weeks ago I had the privilege of being invited out to the Arizona desert with my good friend and fishing editor at Field & Stream, Joe Cermele.  We went out to shoot the opening episode of the 2014 season of Hook Shots. As usual, going anywhere with Cermele is a gas and this trip did not disappoint.

    While the weather somewhat stymied us on bass, we did have one of the most outrageous days of carp fishing I've ever had. We also stumbled onto one of the strangest little cities out in the desert named Quartzite. Which made for some pretty good photography. It had very little to do with fishing, but was well worth the couple hour stop. I'll let the photos do the talking...  Enjoy the photos from the trip and make sure to watch the full episode here. [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 28, 2014

    Proposed Stream and Wetlands Rule is Great News, But with a Caveat

    By Bob Marshall

    You’ve heard of clouds with silver linings. Well, this week conservation news can be described as a bright sunny day--but with some threatening clouds on the horizon.

    Tuesday the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers finally announced the long-awaited proposed rule for which streams and wetlands would regain Clean Water Act protection stripped by Supreme Court decisions in 2001 and 2006.

    Well, the bright light of salvation is now shining down on those intermittent and ephemeral headwaters that feed 60 percent of the nation’s water supply--including most of our trout fisheries. And the sportsmen’s conservation community rejoiced.

    But dark clouds are still hovering over isolated wetlands absolutely essential to waterfowl such as the prairie potholes and the playa lakes. [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 28, 2014

    Gunfight Friday: Colt Trooper vs SIG Sauer

    By Phil Bourjaily

    Today’s gunfight is between a couple of versatile all-around carry guns: a .357 revolver and a .22/.45 ACP semauto combo. The revolver is a Colt Trooper Mk III, made from 1969-1982. It is a redesigned version of the original Trooper, which was intended to be a medium-frame, lower cost version of the Python. As its name suggests, the “Trooper” was marketed to law enforcement agencies. The SIG Sauer P220 was introduced in 1975 as the Swiss army’s service pistol. Designed in Switzerland and built in collaboration with Sauer in Germany, it works with the precise reliability you would expect from a German-Swiss partnership and is still in use today. Here are this week’s contestants: [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 28, 2014

    Diving with Tarpon Can Make You a Better Fly Angler

    1

    By Kirk Deeter

    I am on a family vacation on the island of Bonaire. It’s part of the "ABC islands” (Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao) in the Caribbean, just off the coast of Venezuela. While I have been doing some bonefishing — which I will write about later on (there are some really big bonefish here, the flats are very interesting, and I caught eight fish the other day, between breakfast and lunch) — much of my time, however, has been spent under the surface of the sea. Bonaire is one of the best do-it-yourself shore diving destinations in the world. You literally just pick up your tanks and go. [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 28, 2014

    March Madness: The Sweet Sixteen of Whitetail Shotguns

    7

    By Dave Hurteau

    Kansas has been clipped, ’Cuse cut, Villanova vanquished, the Shockers shocked, and shucked. But in our Sweet Sixteen, all your favorites—the 870, the Deerslayer, the Tar-Hunt, and 220—are still in it, for now.

    While I have carried enough of the shotguns below to have an opinion here (go Ithaca Deerslayer!), when it comes to scatter- and slug guns, I gladly defer to Shotguns Editor Phil Bourjaily, who has chosen and seeded the contenders in two divisions. Here’s Phil: [ Read Full Post ]

  • March 28, 2014

    Ferrell Vs. Redford: Raise The Colorado Or Move The Ocean?

    3

    By Joe Cermele

    The loss of water in the Colorado River is a very serious conservation issue. In fact, the Colorado doesn't even meet the Sea of Cortez anymore. In this video, Will Ferrell and Robert Redford propose two different solutions to this problem. Side note: this is how you shoot a conservation campaign video! Have a great weekend.

    [ Read Full Post ]