Jerry's Tips

KEEP THE FLAVOR IN FROZEN GAME
Vacuum-seal bags are a great way to store frozen game and fish, but only if you know how to thaw the contents. You must poke a few small holes in the packaging first. This breaks the vacuum and permits normal defrosting to occur. If you do not release the seal, the juices will be sucked out of the food, leaving your fish or meat dry.

HOOK THE ONE YOU MISSED
When a fish rises to a fly or lure but is not hooked, cast to the same place only a few times more. If you don't get a strike, move on to your next spot for a while. After half an hour, return to where the fish rose and try again. Once the fish settles, it will resume its favored feeding lie and be waiting for your next cast.

BRIGHTEN UP YOUR SIGHTS
If your rifle's open sights are getting dull, use an emery cloth to remove bluing from the top of the front sight. Then paint the bare metal with fluorescent-pink nail polish or fly-tying lacquer. The bright color will help you align the front sight deep in the notch of the rear before you shoot, which will keep your shot from going high.

CALL DURING PEAK HOURS
Having problems calling in a gobbler early in the morning? It's hard to pry toms away from hens during breeding hours. You'll have better luck around midmorning when hens start nesting and gobblers are lonely. Around 9 A.M., start moving through cover, pausing to call at least every 200 yards. When a gobbler answers, pocket your call and try to close the distance to under 100 yards. Then use soft hen calls to draw him your way.

READER TIP

NEVER FORGET GEAR

-STEVE CANNON, Sacramento, Calif.

After a big hunting or fishing trip, I make a list of everything I brought, stuff I could've left behind, and what I wished I had taken with me. I also write a brief trip summary, including weather conditions. When all my gear is unpacked, cleaned, and ready to be put away, I tuck my list in the box, too. That way the next time I'm ready to take a similar trip, I know just what to pack, even if it's a year later.