ANY SPORTSMAN'S SUBJECT YOU'RE INTERESTED IN? WE PRINT AS MANY OF YOUR LETTERS AS WE CAN
THAT “WILDLIFE STAMP”
OLD-TIME FLYING TARGET
ANOTHER WILD NIMROD
OWL HELPS CROW SHOOTERS
BLUEGILLS DOWN SOUTH
TOBACCO JUICE FOR SNAKES?
WILD BOARS NO DEVILS
WHO OWNS THE GAME?
CITY FOLKS ARE LONELY
SHOTGUN FOR SAFETY
Your editorial on the proposed $1 “wildlife stamp” to be required of all persons fishing, hunting, or trapping on national forests covers only half of the need. The stamp should cost $2, with half the money to be spent for improvement and enlargement of camping facilities in the national forests.
School did not interfere with Bruce Scharf’s interest in the outdoors. “Most of the time,” he says, “I looked out the window and dreamed of high mountains and fast rivers.” He did learn one “scientific fact”: Fish bite better on school days than on Saturdays.
How tough can a moose be? Sportsmen who have hunted the big, hump-nosed deer in the Canadian woods will testify eloquently to his hardihood and courage. And he’s a truculent brute, too, during the rut—ready for a quarrel with man or beast. Many a hunter has had a dangerously close brush with an enraged bull.
Since you may not have heard the news, I am happy to announce that the law for conservation of wild games has been repealed. It was, of course, high time. Wild games had been so abundant that the need for their protection was long past. For years they had been carrying away little children, whose sturdy constitutions enabled them to recover.
Getting a buck back to camp is a hard, perhaps dangerous, job. A hunter who’s done it many times lists right—and wrong—methods
Never Again, Thank You!
Rope—or Ready-made Handles
The day I killed my first buck I learned two important lessons about deer hunting. I learned that when your deer is down and dressed and you’re ready to start back to camp with him, the fun comes temporarily to an end. And I also learned that of all the ways to get a deer out of the woods, the toughest—but wait a minute.
Their wallets were weak but their backs were strong, so they parlayed a hike-hunt into a mighty satisfying trophy
Grounded by Goats
Drama on the Plateau
Just two guys with champagne tastes and beer pocketbooks. That describes Earl Nott and me, all right. But it also describes a lot of other hunters—men with a deep-seated yen to get out in real wilderness country after such trophies as Rocky Mountain goats, men who suffer from pernicious anemia of the wallet and have become reconciled to the fact that they’ll never hang that coveted head on the wall.
A story as pungent as a salt marsh proves Puget Sound snows are mighty smart. But the blast of guns and a near-limit kill is evidence that hunters can be canny too
We Get the Goose Laugh
A large number of unhappy hunters think that snow geese: (a) are possessed of telescopic vision that enables them to spot a gunner no matter how well hidden; (b) are endowed with built-in timing systems which tell them exactly when legal shooting hours start and stop; (c) are just too blamed smart.
To most men he’s the king of beasts. But to some, at least, he’s just a big, overrated cat, with little to commend him but size and awesome appearance. Actually, both the admirers and detractors of the African lion are right. Felis leo is a courageous beast, afraid of nothing.
Fishing and hunting in the big town? You bet! And the men in uniform run into some weird adventures keeping an eye on it!
Patrolling Piers and Parks
Swift Action—and Results
Repelling the Clammers
A friend of mine from the Midwest was walking down Fifth Avenue in New York City with me not long ago when we happened to pass a man in a Marine-green uniform. “Who is that guy?” my friend asked. “A state trooper ?” “No,” I said. “He’s the game warden for Manhattan Island.”
“You young squirts don’t know your A B C’s,” Uncle Peter used to snort. "You just shoot white-tails. We hunted them!” This gives the other side. Sure, times have changed—but there’s more to it than that!
Another Slant on the Subject
Quick Change of Scenery
On the Track of a Cagy Buck
PETER J. SCHOPEL
This is written for my Uncle Peter, who isn’t around any more because last summer his bum heart, which had made him hang up his .30/30 and his grouse gun a good many years ago, finally conked out on him. But he read OUTDOOR LIFE every month for as long as I can remember, and maybe somehow he still gets to read it.
A piece packed with whimsey, some sage advice, a bit of wisdom, and enough belly laughs to spook a hardened big-game hunter
“Sorry, My Mistake!”
Why Goats Climb High
Lame, Halt—and Half Blind
Take my word for it, if you try to tell the average big-game hunter how much better off he’d be hunting groundhogs, he’s apt to do one or all of several things. He’ll attack you with a butterfly net, make slighting references to your ancestry, or tell you where to go.
See a mounted javelina head, tusks bared, and you’ll decide to give him a wide berth. Meet him on the hoof, get one whiff—and you’ll want to run the other way!
The Cowboy and the Lady
Call for the Riot Squad
Big Head, Little Body
A Futile Fusillade
Some years ago a couple of archeologists came to the Southwest to study the curious ways of the ancient inhabitants. They located a cave high on the side of a great canyon and decided to climb to it to see if it had ever been used by primitive Indians.
Riding the range for rainbows among the tall rushes of a hidden prairie valley—with a brand-new “killer” fly pattern to test
A Foursome for April
Description of a “Killer”
Dry Flies are Duds
A New Slant on Rushes
ERWIN D. SIAS
Fishermen are a gullible lot, and most of them are quick to admit it. Yet when Lloyd Conger settled back in my favorite old lounge chair that February evening, touched a match to his cigarette, and commenced to expound on the virtues of Nebraska trout fishing—even I, who generally am a sucker for the most outrageous angling yarns, voiced prompt and vehement skepticism.
Here's a Score Card, devised by leading wildlife experts, that will show you whether you're getting full value for your license money. Rate your department, and if you uncover any faults, get together with other sportsmen and see to it that they're corrected promptly
We’d had amazing luck on our grouse hunt—but not the kind we wanted. Luckily, the cocker didn’t know the word “discouraged”
Reynard Drops His Guard
Pointer From the Piggy Bank
A Promise—And a Doubt
A Date for Queenie
ROBERT W. PEABODY
Maurice and I were in a queer mood. We had just been blessed with an amazing stroke of good luck, yet we were a long way from satisfied. Maurice had killed two red foxes in an hour that morning, in wilderness country where you’d have said our chances of even seeing a fox were hardly better than one in a thousand.
Hank and I have been hunting together ever since we were youngsters way back there in the black-powder days. Even then Hank was of a studious turn of mind, always wanting to know the why of things. I mind one year we hunted rabbits and Hank wasn’t getting his share of them.
These Sportsmen Have Gone All Out to Spread the Conservation Pledge
In Michigan 100,000 men are teaching everyone throughout the state to save natural resources. Your club can follow suit!
Importance of Teamwork
Hundreds of thousands of organized sportsmen, in all sections of the country, are seeing to it that the acceptance of America’s Conservation Pledge becomes more widespread every day. But nowhere has this movement to safeguard our natural resources gained such tremendous momentum as in Michigan, where nearly 100,000 sportsmen are working together, through Michigan United Conservation Clubs, to teach the Pledge to everyone in the state.
More than twenty years have passed since the urge for free land first drew us into the Peace River country of British Columbia. It was with high hopes that my brother-in-law Bill, my brother Cece, and I filed homesteading claims. We had always lived and worked on farms or ranches and thought we knew about all there was to know, but the Peace River country taught me that you never do know how much you don’t know.
Come along—via words and photos—and troll off-shore for a battling albacore. He’s like a swift bolt of blue lightning, the most unpredictable, the fastest, and the gamest fish for his pounds in the ocean
First Strike is Important
Pappy’s Educated Foot
Boats for Everybody
CLAUDE M. KREIDER
We slipped out of Long Beach harbor before daylight in a smart charter cruiser and, with the breaking of the soft California dawn, were riding broad, oily swells midway in the Santa Catalina Channel. Al Thieler, the skipper, slowed the purring diesel to trolling speed and sang out, “Four lines with feather jigs over the stern, boys!”
Ever yearn for an expensive-looking, richly tooled rifle scabbard or pistol holster? Well, you can make one yourself, from cowhide to finished lacing. And you can also turn out decorated billfolds, belts, and purses. All you need is time and a few inexpensive tools!
A Good Pattern is Essential
It’s All Done With Tools
Lining is Easily Applied
For me, necessity turned out to be the mother of a hobby—a mighty fascinating hobby. For years I’d been lugging my .300 H. & H. Magnum rifle over the Northwest and quite a hunk of Canada. Field carrying, of course, was necessary. But I grew mighty tired of having that heavy rifle slung across my back when I was in the saddle.
To become a good game shot with a rifle, simply follow these suggestions. Ignore them, and you may have to unlearn a lot!
Trigger Control Sounds Simple
Sitting Position is Steady
Get Set—and Then Relax!
Jumpiness Queers Everything
Nine tenths of all rifle shooting is very simple. All the rifleman has to do is to put his sights on what he wants to hit, hold steadily, then get off his shot without disturbing his aim. If the rifle is correctly sighted and sufficiently accurate, if he can ignore trajectory (which must be taken into consideration in the case of a long shot), and if he doesn’t have to figure lead (as he would on running game), that’s all there is to it.
A full-size Canada-goose decoy, made of easily inflated, heavy-gauge rubber, has been added to a line of rubber duck decoys already available. The goose decoy is about 2 ft. long and 1 ft. high, weighs 18 oz., and may be rolled up, as shown in the photograph, and carried in the pocket.
To promote conservation and ensure better fishing and hunting for all, sportsmen must work together. If you don’t have a club in your community, why not organize one? You’ll find many who are eager to join. As a service to its readers OUTDOOR LIFE offers a special handbook, How to Form a Sportsmen’s Club.
With probably less than 100 grizzlies in all Wyoming, the last thing we expected was to tangle with a trio of the brutes!
One Down, One Hit, and One Away
HOWARD L. NEWBY
Grizzly bears are exceedingly rare in Wyoming. In fact, most natives of the state probably would tell you that you’re just about as likely to run across a camel there. But wait till you hear what happened on Mink Creek, north of Jackson Hole, a couple of years back.
Spring and fall I work for the Pennsylvania Department of Forests and Waters as a forest-fire lookout on Buckhorn Ridge in Pike County. My job is to sit in a 6 x 6-ft. observation cabin atop a 65-ft. fire tower and report any smoke I see in the surrounding woods.
Sometime you may want to make a hole in a belt or piece of leather when you haven’t a punch of the proper size handy. You can do a neat job with a steel knitting needle—or even a wire nail—heated red-hot.
Question: What is the meaning of the terms, “automatic,” “semi-automatic,” and “autoloading”? Is there a pistol made that will fire a full clip when the trigger is pulled and held? — Z. S. Heinrich, Mich. Answer: A true automatic—such as a machine gun—fires, ejects, reloads, and repeats the cycle as long as the trigger is held back.
Thousands of sportsmen now wear America’s Conservation Pledge on their shirts and jackets, and so can you! All you need is an ordinary household iron, heated as if to press a shirt, and new paper transfers of the Pledge design which are available from OUTDOOR LIFE at cost.
More than 800 motion-picture films on fishing, hunting, travel, nature, and kindred subjects are listed in the newly revised and expanded booklet, Free Movies for Sportsmen’s Clubs, prepared by OUTDOOR LIFE as a service to its readers. All these films are available for showing at meetings sponsored by sportsmen’s clubs at no cost except that of transportation and insurance.
Every hunter has heard tales of buck deer locking antlers in their battles during the rutting season, and remaining hopelessly entangled until both die. But only rarely does anyone stumble onto such an occurrence, and even more rarely does he happen to have a camera along.
Every squirrel hunter has faced the problem—how to make a bushytail move around from the far side of a tree, so you can get a shot at him. If you have a partner along, of course, there is no problem. One of you merely need move to the far side of the tree and make a noise while the other gets ready to shoot.
Ever try sleeping in your car? In an automobile with normal seats and upholstering it is a backbreaking experience. But one day 3 years ago, while cleaning out the old two-door sedan, I made some measurements and discovered that there was a stretch of 6 ft. 3 in. from the back of the front seat to the back of the trunk.
Guide Kills Treed Cougar With Jackknife on a Stick
J. M. Cummings
The Windermere district, in the Rocky Mountains of southeast British Columbia, is famous for its big-game hunting. It is doubtful, however, that the region has ever seen a more dangerous kill than the one made last winter by Joe Jimmy Neass, a well-known guide.
Despite the fact that I myself do not go for bolt-action shotguns, they do have their place in the scheme of things. Since they are inexpensive to manufacture, they are cheap. Hence they are serviceable for potshooting on a rough trip, for use around the farm, and for the lad who cannot afford a more expensive weapon.
Patterning Demonstrates Why Shotguns Will Often Miss
That article by Jack O’Connor on patterning the shotgun (in the August issue) certainly has opened the eyes of some of my sportsmen friends. Most of them had never tested their guns on paper targets, largely because they didn’t know how to go about it and also because they wouldn’t know what results to look for if they had.
Southern hunters complained bitterly about the scarcity of squirrels—their most popular game animal—during the 1949-50 season. Did illegal gunners, disease, predators, or insecticides kill off the plentiful populations? Are there even fewer squirrels to hunt this fall?
Persistence counts as much as skill when it comes to catching the muskellunge, most elusive of our fresh-water gamefish
No Sport for the Nervous Type
He Wasn’t Having Any
It’s Worth the Boredom
Three Casts, No Strike
The muskellunge, an excellent gamefish, is not widely distributed. For that reason, a large proportion of anglers never get a chance at one. Often it would involve an expensive trip to the Northern lake country or to Canada, and not everyone can manage it.
An angler in a rowboat, using a 20-year-old rod and an 18-year-old reel, has taken what is said to be a world-record bluefin tuna. The feat was performed on St. Anns Bay, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, on September 4, by a Canadian naval officer, Comdr.
My mountain cabin, 35 miles northwest of Colorado Springs, Colo., is in highly picturesque country—far enough off the beaten track for privacy, near enough to the highways for convenience. The only thing it lacked, in other years, was trout fishing.
Sportsmen everywhere have requested decals of America’s Conservation Pledge, and here they are—blue and white, with gold stars. Display them on auto, home and store windows; on bookcases, guncases—on almost any smooth surface. The decals are 4 in. indiameter, and they’re available from OUTDOOR LIFE at cost, 10 cents each or 12 for $1.
You’ll surely get several laughs, as I did, from this amusing letter printed in The Progressive Fish Culturist, a publication of the U. S. Department of the Interior: “I see that most of the technical fellows say it doesn’t pay to stock bass.
Question: Three years ago I started fly fishing with a cheap rod—9 ft., 5½ oz.—and a D-level line. Now I’d like to get a better outfit. I fish mostly from a boat, and only for panfish, so I’d like a lighter rod. What size do you suggest? What tapered line?
There’s no “off season” for living outdoors. You can be quite comfortable in a tent in winter, if you follow these hints
Fly for Extra Protection
Avoid Drifting Snow
Set Up an Inside Stove
Keeping Bedding Dry
Foods for Cold Weather
MAURICE H. DECKER
Summer is not the only practical time to camp. You can live quite comfortably in a tent during the fall and winter months if you select your equipment wisely and manage it well. This fact is demonstrated by hunters, trappers, ice fishermen, explorers, and others whose business or recreation takes them to wilderness country during cold weather.
Commercially canned vegetables are cooked foods and need not be boiled before they are eaten. It is safe to leave food in an opened can as long as you follow the same precautions given other cooked foods that are not used immediately. Keep them covered and in a cool place.
Gee, but I’m proud! Here I am, 14 years old, and I’ve shot my first deer! Dad and my big brother were both a year older when they got their first muleys, so let me brag a little. It was on a Sunday afternoon last November, and warm for that time of the year, when dad suggested that he and I drive up into the hills back of Gardiner, Mont., and sight in his new .270 Winchester.
An editorial in our October issue told how sportsmen’s clubs in Tennessee and Kentucky are taking active steps to bring fish dynamiters to justice. Now we note that the Wayne County Sportsman’s Club, in Michigan, has declared war on another class of low-down characters—dog killers and stealers.
A piece of firewood that flies into the air when hit with the ax can inflict painful, even dangerous, injuries. You can avert such an accident, though, by using a pair of forked branches (as shown in the drawing) to hold the wood as you cut it. Spike the forks to the chopping block or drive their long ends into the earth.
Question: We use our Maine cabin a few times during the winter and we’d like to leave a supply of canned goods there. How can we stow them so they won’t freeze?—Edmund L. Piper, Conn. Answer: I think your best bet would be a small storage space dug into the ground.
Proper winter storage is important; for if your craft and motor suffer unnecessarily, it is you who’ll suffer in the end
Get it Under a Roof
Support the Hull Properly
J. A. EMMETT
The time’s soon coming when, regretfully, those who live where snow and ice and cold move in will have to prepare their outfits for winter hibernation. Since it’s inescapable, the thing to do is to face it with the best grace possible—and with good sense besides.
This Homemade Roller Makes Boat Loading Much Easier
Charles E. Foster
A roller on your auto-top boat carrier can be worth its weight in gold. Here’s one you can make yourself, at a cost of about $3. Select a roller of straight-grained hardwood—a hoe handle, say—about 1½ in. in diameter and at least 1 in. longer than the boat is wide.
Often a man who has bought his first canoe is prone to regard the paddle as a minor piece of equipment, not worthy of much thought. So he’ll take whatever is offered him. The experienced canoeist, on the other hand, is a crank about his paddles.
Question: When I hauled my boat out of the river last fall the bottom was covered with a thick growth of moss. I had a tough time scraping it off. Is there any preparation that repels such growths?—Paul E. Brock, Mo. Answer: Bottom paints used in salt-water service to prevent marine borers from getting into the wood will also help prevent the formation of fresh-water growths.
Pointer or English setter? Here, in a discussion of the merits and characteristics of the breeds, are the facts—and opinions
A Good Recommendation
Different Ways of Working
Suit Training to Temperament
C. BLACKBURN MILLER
Often when upland-game hunters get together it’s not long before the discussion swings around to the relative merits of the pointer and the English setter. The man who owns a pointer is bound to say that his breed is faster in the field, learns quicker, is more tractable, and goes about the job of finding birds with greater concentration.
How to Build a Winter Heater for Your Dog’s Kennel
One of the most worrisome problems confronting the dog owner in winter is keeping the dog outside the house and warm at the same time. Many a verbal battle has been waged in my house over the issue of whether or not my dog should stay in the cellar when outside temperatures drop well below freezing.
Dr. Kinney is glad to answer personally all letters from readers regarding their dogs’ health. It should be remembered when writing him that serious illnesses cannot be treated successfully by a person unable to examine the dog. In such instances, a local veterinarian should be consulted at once.
Devoted ducks. During recent ducknesting season Tom Sterling, biologist on Ducks Unlimited projects in southern Alberta, driving along road overtook mother pintail leading brood of 7 ducklings to water. Knowing ducks had long way to go, gathered brood in paper bag, placed it in car.
There is opportunity for plenty of sport in Lower California, that long narrow Mexican peninsula that juts into the Pacific Ocean south of California, and is separated from the rest of Mexico by the Gulf of California. It is sparsely populated and largely undeveloped.
At high tide the lower reaches of central California’s Napa River spread out over many acres of mud flats, forming Napa Bay, one of the state’s most productive striped-bass fishing areas. No public roads give access to the bay. You must procure a boat from one of the numerous boathouses that sprawl along the Vallejo water front, or at Dutton’s Landing on the east side of the river, near the Vallejo-Napa highway, or from the Cutting’s Wharf resorts on the west side of the river near the Napa-Sonoma highway.
Reindeer, introduced into Alaska in 1902 to provide food and clothing for the natives, increased to more than 2,000,000 within 25 years. Ten years ago their number was estimated at 500,000. Now they have dwindled to about 50,000. According to A. B. (Cot) Hayes of Anchorage, Alaska, who has spent many winters in the far north as traffic manager for Northwest Airlines, Alaskans are now wondering how much longer this European and Asiatic cousin of the North American caribou will last.
Don’t Blame the Fish and Game Man for Nature’s Shortcomings
How Nasty Can a Game Hog Get?
Why do novelists, poets, and song writers associate fishing with laziness? From Washington Irving onward they’ve put the angler on a par with the town drunk—just a lovable old idler who lets his wife do the plowing, his children the milking, and his neighbors the tongue clucking while he goes his serene way with rod and line.