MAY, with its bursting of buds and its awakening of all nature will usher in a desire on the part of the hunter and angler to get out and mix with things in the open. The stories that we have selected for our May number are calculated to stimulate that feeling in the souls of our readers, and carry them to paths far from the office and the factory.
To the sportsman who loves the pursuit of big game and the fascination of the wilderness, with its dense forests, its rivers, lakes and brooks, its remoteness from the busy cities crowded with humanity and pulsating with industry, a trip to New Brunswick, Canada, surely possesses charms and attractions that are hard to resist.
Mother, what pushes the ocean in And piles up the waves so high? Away back where it’s so thick and still, You see how it holds up the sky! What makes it change its color so? The waves curl up so white, And mostly it is green and blue, But really black at night.
On May 24th, the day following the killing of the big brown bear by Boyd and the capture of her cubs, all were up and had breakfast over at 7 o’clock. Boyd took McAleenan’s camera in hand, which had the day previous been broken, and with his tools of a blacksmith he performed the miraculous skill usually accredited to a watchmaker.
Here's to my den—my dear old den! Where I live and re-live, again and again, Those days I spent in forest wide, By mountain lake and swift brook side, Stalking the wild things over the moors, Getting new life from God’s out-doors. Yonder my rods and well-worn creel Kindle my heart with the joy I feel, While visions of many a sparkling stream With its lurking trout—a poet’s dream— Like beauteous pictures, in colors rare, Drive from my soul its load of care.
It was in June, 1914, that I visited Lac Vieux Desert, Wisconsin, for the purpose of catching some large muscal-lunge on light tackle. I knew that they were there, and I was determined to get them at any cost. Success crowned my efforts, and among them was one weighing 35 pounds, caught on a 6-ounce split bamboo rod.
Adult Male—Entire head, including sides and chin, together with back of neck, back rump and most of upper surface of wings, bright slate blue; some of the wing coverts marked with a few large black spots; the lesser wing coverts with similar but smaller ones; throat, fore neck, breast and sides and belly, rich reddish brown, deepest on throat and chest paler and more pinkish on the sides and abdomen; sides and base of neck behind, changing to gold, emerald green and rich crimson; back undertail feathers white; wings brownish black, several of the shorter primaries with broad bluish-white areas on the outer webs near the base, and a narrow white edge to the tips.
Up the limpid Willamette River, thirteen miles south of Portland, Oregon, the first great obstacle is met by the salmon in their pilgrimage from salt-water to the head of fresh-water. there to spawn and die. Although for about four years they have been reveling in the wanton wilds of the boundless ocean where the most palatable esculents are found in abundance, now being on their pilgrimage, they eschew food of all kinds.
A ruddy glow in the air above, The leaping flames of the camp-fire bright; The curling spiral of fragrant smoke, Losing itself in the depths of night. Around us, half seen through the velvet dusk, A deeper black in the night’s black pall; Towering up until lost to sight, Loom the great pines like a shadow-wall.
If the eye were unable to distinguish between the different lengths of light waves there would be no such thing as color, and the world as we know it would be entirely different from what it is. Just as the deep sea fish knows nothing but the ocean, hence does not know that the ocean exists for lack of something with which to compare his all-pervading element, so we living things on this earth are so washed by colors that we seldom give it a thought.
Letter No. 94.—The Platte River as a Trout Stream.
Letter No. 95.—How to Make Dough Balls for Carp.
Letter No. 96.—Defends the Overalls.
Letter No. 97.—Black Bass in California.
Editor Angling Department:—I wish to add my word to the winter fly-fishing discussion. Going after trout during the winter season is not uncommon in the western mountainous country, where warm springs keep the water open throughout the year.
Undoubtedly every trout is a spring trout, for the scientific name means “dwelling in springs,” but I have a welldefined notion of a spring trout as differing sufficiently in habits from his associates, to deserve a chapter by himself. As one country boy put it to me some years ago: “Them trout that live in that spring up there are just like other trout, only more so!” That is an apt description, all right; “like trout, only more so.”
To tell one how to cast a fly is next to an impossibility, comparable to explaining what sugar tastes like. There is just one royal road to expertness with the whipsy tool, constant and untiring practice. Better than words of advice is the companionship of one who knows how to handle the fuzzywuzzy lures with grace, ease and success.
I recently received a letter from a friend regarding what he was pleased to term “upto-the-minute tackle.” There is no such thing. Every little while some brother writes me a note, scribbled in haste usually, opening with some such phrase as “Have you seen?” or “Have you examined?” I have learned to shiver at sight of the question.
We have in this state what is known as the Salmon Club of Oregon. The purpose of the club is to encourage taking large game fish on light tackle. The regulation tackle consists of a rod to be made of any material except solid bamboo cane, to be not shorter than five feet over all and to weigh not more than six ounces.
The Fiala sleeping bag is one of the best designed sleeping bags on the market, as a glance at the illustrations herewith will readily show. It is an invention of Mr. Fiala, the Arctic explorer, and is patented. The design is perhaps more suitable for fur, or other thick covering, than for a lighter bag, but is excellent in any event.
When my baggage was transferred from the boat to my guide’s democrat he looked at my khaki pack sack and then at me with a ghost of a smile flickering around his mouth. “What’s wrong, Joe,” I asked. “Don’t you like the sack?” “Oh, it’s all right,” he returned after a careful survey.
To make a sleeping-bag for two men, select heavy woolen double blankets at least 6 x 7 feet; stretch them out full length (14 feet), one on top of others; then fold up to size 6 x 7 feet; then sew up sides, the foot end being already tight; then get a cover made of some good light waterproof canvas for an envelope to put blankets in, which will keep rain and dirt from getting into bag.
I've found it to be a fact that trees move their limbs without influence from wind, rain or snow. I have cut trails through the woods, cutting away all branches to give a clear path, and later (a month or so in winter time) have had to stoop under limbs that had moved down, these same branches having been left uncut because they were high enough to clear at time trail was cut.
Give me a chance—an even break— Let me then stand or fall— I play the game with my life the stake, But you risk nothing at all! What have I done to you or yours? What crime can you fix on me? Why hunt me down with a pack of curs, 'Till my chances are one to three!
At the time of going to press with this number (March 10) final action on our bear bill had only been taken in two states— Montana and Wyoming. We regret to state that it was killed in both states, after it had passed the House in Wyoming and had been strongly recommended by the House committee on fish and game in Montana.
In the January number of your magazine I notice an article by Francis B. Fox entitled “The Shotgun Shooter’s Outfit.” After a careful perusal of the same I have arrived at some conclusions, the gist of which I take the liberty of expressing below:
Noticing the letter of Jack C. Miles in the February number of Outdoor Life regarding the hybrid wild duck, I wish to say that several years ago while hunting wild ducks on the Connecticut River, in Longmeadow (near Springfield, Mass.) I shot a wild duck, a cross between the mallard and the black duck.
This time our friend, Dr. A. P. Deacon, of Weed, Calif., gives us a great cat hunting picture. While these tree-climbing stunts of the Airedale are common in the hills, yet it is seldom that we ever get the camera set just right at the proper time to snap them.
I have some interesting hunting and war news which I think will be of interest and benefit to your readers. I have received a letter from Nairobi, head office of Newland Tarlton & Co., the well known safari outfitters, stating that the hunting grounds in British East Africa are practically unaffected by the war and the scene of hostilities is practically entirely in German East Africa.
As an old hunter and guide, I would like to say a word in favor of Bruin. Spring hunting of bears ought to be abolished for all time, or we soon will not have any bears to hunt. Another thing: No hunting with dogs should be allowed.
Resurrecting Mr. Stevens' Seventy-Five-Pound Coyote
Editor Outdoor Life
I do not believe in digging up a buried hatchet, but have just read (and believe) an account of a seventyfive-pound coyote in an old number of Outdoor Life. I lived in Routt County, Colorado, for a number of years and have seen a few animals, dead and alive, that were supposed to be a cross between a coyote and wolf—called in that part of the sagebrush a brush wolf.
Lenora, Kansas, has a man who is more than usually active for one approaching middle age, for, according to his story, he, alone, unaided except by the resources afforded him by nature, caught a full grown jack rabbit in his hands. John says it was like this: “I was walking along the road one bright day when there was about six inches of fine light snow on the ground; that feathery kind that doesn’t make any noise when you step in it.
I read an interesting letter in your November issue by Mr. Rowell, “Shall Bears Be Protected?” and I think he has got off the black bear "trail, when he says that they will not charge under any circumstances, not even when wounded and brought to bay.
R. J. Middaugh, a staunch supporter of the game laws, writes from Fremont, Neb., under date of Jan. 4, 1915: “You must keep plugging away on the subject of the Federal law on migratory birds until every state has passed a law in accordance with it, so our state game wardens will be compelled to enforce it.
The ranging and killing power of a projectile fired from any type of gun is governed: First, by boring of the arm; second, by the design of projectile; third, by the kind and charge of powder used to give the projectile its start in life. To make this clear, I have made some charts that may be referred to to get a clear idea of what takes place after a projectile leaves the bore of the arm.
It surely is. It’s big brother to the biggest little gun in the world. And it is the littlest big gun we have yet seen. It is in this wise: When the Savage Arms Co. brought out the now famous .22 high-power, popularly known as the Imp, they stepped ahead far enough to make a stock rifle using cartridges of high concentration and ballistic efficiency.
There is a rhythmic swing and uniformity of method and movement in trap shoot ing that is distinctly military in style. The recoil of the average trap load is almost identical with that of the regulation army rifle load. But most important of all, the trap shooter learns to judge trajectories, windage and acquires an ability few regular soldiers possess, i.
Suggestions For Strengthening Our National Defense
Editor Outdoor Life
I have long considered the defenseless condition of our country, and have come to the conclusion that we are certainly living in a fools’ paradise. History teaches us that all governments owe their origin and existence to the power of the sword, and just as soon as the population of a nation became indifferent or negligent to the condition of its defense it was only a matter of a comparatively short time when some better prepared nation would come along and subjugate them.
There is a young man in the vicinity of Ovando (Montana) who knows of a “Prank a Bullet Can Play.” He was out with a .22 rifle and thought to shoot a hole in the bottom of an iron kettle. The kettle was on its side and the open end was toward him; he fired at the kettle, which the bullet struck all right, but it came back and hit the shooter in the eye.
I think it was in 1896 that a bunch of cow punchers, including myself, traveled on horseback from Hyannis, Neb., to North Platte, Neb., a distance of about 135 miles, to witness Buffalo Bill’s initial performance with his Wild West Show in his home town.
I have read with great interest your March editorial on “Training the Citizen of Today for the Soldier of Tomorrow," and believe that if there were a few more editors in this country who would view our unpreparedness with the same sanity and write about it in the same open commonsense manner, the nation at large would be greatly benefited thereby.
As Chas. Askins' articles on shotguns are no doubt being read by most of your readers, I think they will have a tendency to make the fellow buying his first gun to get one overweight. While I am not an authority on shotguns, still I think my experiences with these guns will prove of some value regarding the ideal weight of a shotgun.
In regard to enquiry on page 92 of the January Outdoor Life by Floyd Halfin, Dunkard, Pa., wish to state that I have owned a Standard gasoperated auto-loading rifle, .25 caliber, since 1910, and while I can not state how many times I have shot it, still it must run close up to the 1,000 mark.
In view of the fact that I have many inquiries in regard to making composition balls I herewith submit the following: The best mixture I have been able to find is two-thirds rosin to one-third dental plaster of paris, with enough lamp black to color the mixture.
I desire a little information on a few points relative to my shotgun, and I believe I am writing to the proper place for it. I bought a new gun, fired fifteen shells, then I took it down to clean it, and discovered what I never saw before in any gun I had used: this was several streaks of lead, not more than one inch from end of shell when in gun, but extended for three or four inches.
I have been noting the articles in this magazine lately concerning dum-dum bullets and what some say regarding revolver bullets mushrooming. I have had very good success with the .38 Smith & Wesson special bullets by placing a strip of paper in the mold when casting the bullet, as directed in the Ideal Hand Book.
The accompaying photograph may prove of some interest to those readers of Outdoor Life who are interested in fancy, yet practical, revolver stocks. The gun shown at top of picture is my .38 S. & W. military revolver, fitted with target front and regular service rear sights.
Amateur Rodmaking, by Perry D. Frazer; 220 pages; illustrated with drawings; 75 cents net; Outing Pub. Co., New York. Just the book for the anglers who desire to make their own rods. Contains history of rod making, with a discussion of various materials used.
James L. Donaly, 137 Court St., Newark, N. J., has issued an attractive folder on his Redfin Baits and accessories that he will send to anglers and fishing tackle dealers free. We have received a copy of the new Ideal Hand Book, published by the Marlin Firearms Co., 37 Willow St., New Haven, Conn.
We show a photograph herewith of the new Baker single-barrel tran gun. Simplicity and strength of mechanism predominates. The ejector mechanism is very simple, consisting only of the kicker proper, actuated by a coil spring, and the trip.