What is riling me at present is all this nonsense you have printed about the Bengal tiger on page 28 of your June issue. I mean all this stuff about tigers being cruel and perverse and delighting in slaughter. All this might be very well in a cheap fiction thriller, but it has no place in a leading sportsman’s magazine.
There’s one thing sure: If you have a gunner or fisherman in the family, you are never at a loss to know what to give him for Christmas. While you wouldn’t dream of selecting the major equipment, such as a gun, rod, or reel—at least, not without definite knowledge of what is wanted (and a nice check or gift certificate might be even better)—there is an infinite variety of accessories needed for these highly specialized outdoor sports.
WARNING! This tabulation is compiled from official sources; but in the space available it is impossible to give full details, and in some cases the authorities have power to change seasons on short notice. So before you hunt in any state or province, get a copy of the current regulations from the proper agency and then read up on bag limits, local exceptions, etc.
The most dangerous hunt of all—in a part of Africa no white hunter saw before
TWO MORE FOR THE COLLECTION
BERRY B. BROOKS
Many sportsmen rate the lion as Africa's most dangerous game animal. Others vote for the buffalo, still others for the rhinoceros. I respect these opinions but I cannot agree with any of them. In my book the elephant stands unchallenged in first place.
They made a big thing of it, telling how I hunted a Korean tiger and ran smack into a band of bandits
ROY CHAPMAN ANDREWS
A few months ago a news magazine referred to me as “the late Roy Chapman Andrews.” That was the third time my demise has been anticipated in the public prints. It’s been quite interesting to read my own obituaries, to be featured in a memorial service, and to see telegrams of condolence to my family.
King-size muleys? Place to get them, we were told, was right near home. But then we ran into a raging blizzard—and three hoodlum hunters
Wet, swirling snow was pouring down to form a cold blanket of early-morning gray. The pines and aspens of the canyon bottom below us were dark, eerie ghosts; and where the foliage thinned into snow-buried sage up the opposite basin side, visibility was blurred in the soggy vengeance of the Idaho storm.
George Schuler made a helpless gesture with his hand. It included the sweep of mountain that started at his garden gate and climbed the ragged skyline, and noisy Beech Creek tumbling toward its rendezvous with Jacks River. We were standing knee-deep in the creek, waiting for the fourth member of the party to appear.
Pete Anderson has a 165-acre stock farm near New Albany, Ohio, a few miles east of Columbus. His city friend, Bob Winters of Columbus, always comes out to open the hunting season with him there on the farm. When I stopped by last spring, Pete told me about opening day the fall before.
They’re plenty tough all right, but this lifetime hunter has never found any as fierce, as cunning, or even as big as a lot of people claim they are
Carrier for Small Game
With the possible exceptions of the rattlesnake and the bald eagle, the North American alligator has been the victim of more nature faking than any other creature on the continent. For one thing, fourteen and fifteen-foot man-killers are by no means uncommon in adventure fiction.
The little ball really produces if you learn to handle it correctly
In a single day on the heavily fished McKenzie River in Oregon, last fall, my friend Bill Hunt hooked and released more than fifty trout, scaling from eight to eighteen inches. And this while other anglers on the stream were bemoaning their poor luck!
Pheasant hunting with only your dog for company holds a very special charm, as this three-page picture story shows
CARROLL SEGHERS II
When, in pheasant hunting, you’re going to make a day of it, you like to have a friend or two along. Or, if you’re hunting big fields or grain stubble, it’s not only fun but good sense to be one of a party big enough to drive a field. But when there are farm chores to do, or you have to be in an office later in the day and there is shooting near your home, it can be fun to hunt solo for as many hours as you have to spare—just you and your dog.
The smallest fishhook in the world gets amazing results for Jack Wise, of Lancaster, Pa. The hook, a size 40, is only one third as large as the smallest commercial hook made in the U. S., the No. 22. When the tiny No. 40’s came from Norway as a gift, Wise tied his own flies on them.
Only 15, he’d taken grizzlies, Dall sheep, caribou, moose. But this was the big test: a giant Alaska bear
DR. D. B. ELROD
I had seen some big bear tracks in my time, but nothing to match these. They crossed the little snowfed creek a hundred feet in front of our camp and led out onto the tide flats. The bear had walked there during the night, while we slept. My fifteen-year-old son Burk and I were camped with Bud Branham, our guide, at Kujulik Bay on the bleak and treeless Alaska Peninsula.
Tarpon put on a spectacular show at night in the weirdly radiant waters of the Gulf
EGBERT N. BOWYER
No other fishing I’ve ever done compares with harpooning tarpon. When I first heard of it, after moving to Tarpon Springs, Florida, it was something new to me. My reaction, as a rod-and-line angler, was probably the same as yours. “How in the world,” I thought, “can harpooning tarpon be sport?”
Are hunters good sportsmen? Well, I’ll nominate four New Jersey men for the title: Charles Nelson, Frank Meissner, Gig D’Agostino, and Art Balzer. It was last day of the 1950 deer season, and so far the four hunters had been skunked.
Yeah, I’m a pretty good hand with an ax. My sports like to watch me cut firewood in camp. But shucks, I ain’t in the same league with Johnny Salmon or Cutaway Cassidy. They live over in Soda Springs. Fanciest men with a double-bitted ax I ever see.
I taught myself the art in six weeks— and I’ll never be the same man again
I am frank to admit that the experts had me buffaloed for a long time. Having observed how solemnly they bared their heads at mention of the name of this or that noted fly tyer, and having read with wide eyes their odes to the noble art, I concluded that there must be awesome difficulty in attaching bits of fur and feather to a hook.
Here’s a gunrack that takes up only a little space in the corner of a room yet holds seven shotguns or rifles, plenty of ammunition and accessories, and even medals and trophy cups, if you have any. The simple plans on the page opposite, plus the photos on the one following, should enable you to build the rack with ease.
Years ago I found out that sometimes the hunt you most expect to be a dismal flop turns out to be a ripsnorter. But this trip we were on didn’t look like it was going to be one of those exceptions. I hadn’t wanted to come, but Joe Small had won me over with his smooth line of gab.
Not so many years ago the .30/06 was the undisputed leader of the more-powerful American calibers. It was the top all-round big-game cartridge; the No. 1 long-range target load; and it was even touted as a varmint cartridge by some of its more enthusiastic admirers.
Question: I have trouble in aiming my Model 70 Winchester .30/06 rifle. It’s equipped with a Lyman peep sight, and I find it difficult to get my eye close enough to the sight, especially when I’m wearing a hunting coat. That slows me up considerably.
If ever a picture told a story, this month’s cover painting does. Artist Charles Dye has packed a lot of woods-wisdom and humor into this little scene of a happy hunter and his buck. It’s all there: the months of planning for the hunt; the excitement of the stalk; the thrill of the kill—and the panting bone-weariness of the long carry out.
Before cottontails set up winter housekeeping, look for them where food is handy
ROB F. SANDERSON
We don’t always get a good fall of tracking snow as early as Thanksgiving Day here in central Wisconsin. So when dad, Tom, and I awoke that Thursday to find two inches of it in the fields and woods we were as pleased as Punch. Mother was getting ready to cook the big holiday dinner and warning us to have an appetite for it.
I read with a great deal of interest not long ago that the high-velocity .22 Long Rifle cartridge is a good jackrabbit cartridge to 150 yd. Maybe it is, but the lads who hit consistently at that distance are very shrewd judges of range. Let’s look at some figures.
At our house, beginning of the wildfowl season usually means that delectable table fare is on the way. If the hunter brings home a wild goose, there are a few preliminary steps before roasting it. First wipe out the cavity of the goose—especially if it has been feeding on fish—with a cloth wrung out in vinegar.
What hook shall I use? It's a worrisome question for all anglers, and particularly for the inexperienced ones who are understandably confused by the great variety of styles, lengths, weights, points, and barbs of hooks presently available.
You can catch minnows, crawfish, and other small live bait easily and neatly with a simple tilting net like the one shown here. All you need to make one is a piece of hardware cloth, a length of ⅜-in. iron rod, a small section of tubing, two poles or bamboo sticks about 36 in. long, and some cord.
Question: I’ve been thinking of buying a fly-casting rod for use on largemouth bass. What size should I get, and what size line?— Charles H. Porbes, La. Answer: A 9-ft. 6-oz. rod should be O.K. It will take an H-C-H silk line. It will also take an H-C-H nylon in some makes, G-B-G in others.
Most fishermen think of snapping turtles as vicious predators which should be caught, killed, and left to rot. Few know that there’s meat inside that rough, horny shell which, when properly dressed and cooked, makes a welcome addition to the camp bill of fare.
One of the best bargains I ever got in a boat was a practically new hunting skiff which I bought from an owner who was disgusted with it. The boat was tender, he claimed, and had capsized a couple of times. It was wet and uncomfortable and, according to him, dangerous to shoot from.
Making a set of oars often proves to be a tricky project, chiefly because most home craftsmen try to turn out the round-shaft type which is difficult to shape into proper balance. It is considerably easier to follow a plan which permits leaving part of the shaft square —as does the one shown here.
Have you ever broken a shear pin on your outboard motor and then remembered with a sinking feeling that you didn’t have a spare along? Usually this means a long row, or even the possibility of a dangerous drift at the mercy of winds and waves. An emergency repair is possible, however, even if it was your last pin.
If you’ve ever operated your outboard motor at high altitudes—say 6,000 ft. or more—you’ve probably noticed that it doesn’t have so much power as when you run it at sea level. That’s a natural characteristic of all internal-combustion engines which, of course, operate on a mixture of air and fuel fed into the cylinders through the carburetor.
Surplus game meat or fish can be preserved until you are ready to eat it by any one of three methods: refrigeration, salting, or dry-curing. When facilities for the first two are unavailable, as often is the case in wilderness camps and on very long trails, campers and woodsmen must rely upon the third.
Question: Can you give me the formula for a good dressing which will soften, preserve, and waterproof leather jackets, gloves, mittens, boots, and shoes? I prefer a preparation that won’t darken the color and won’t make the surface too oily or greasy.
There is no greater source of satisfaction to the hunter in the field than the company of a well-trained retriever. Such a dog is worth his weight in gold, even though training him to that degree of proficiency may cost his owner or trainer an equal price in time, patience, and energy. For retrieving is not easy to teach. In fact, it is among the most difficult of all training exercises. But it can be taught by anyone who is willing to apply himself industriously to a few simple but important procedures. There are several methods by which retrieving can be taught, and their success depends as much on the application of the teacher as upon the devices or tricks he uses. Discussions of retriever training usually involve two types—natural and “forced.” There is a wide misconception of what constitutes “forced” retrieving, and the professional means of teaching it. Many think of it as something harsh and inhumane. Actually the term can be applied to any set of procedures which get the desired results over and above those used in the occasional play retrieve. The only true non-force method is to toss an object out, let the dog play with it, and coax him to return it to get another toss. But when the dog darts under a bush and chews on the object, whatever cajolery the trainer uses to get the dog to resume the game can rightly be called “force.” The main trouble with the so-called natural method, or any of its variations, is that dogs don’t actually learn to retrieve but to play. They often will pick up an object and, when called, drop it and scamper up to the trainer. They are not retrieving but playing a game in which they are allowed to invent too many of the rules. The first rule to follow in any serious retriever-training effort is never to use a command that the dog previously has learned he may disobey without fear of reprimand. For example, if you’ve used “fetch” while playing ball with your pup, and sometimes he did fetch and sometimes he didn’t, then start serious training with an entirely new word. It is far more difficult for a dog to unlearn than to learn. Before being trained as a retriever, a dog should first be given the basic obedience or yard exercises, such as come, sit-stay, down, and also should be made responsive to a negative command. The more thoroughly these simple commands have been taught, the easier it will be to teach the more advanced exercises. The method I used on Tiptoe, a pointer, will produce a dog that will retrieve on command and will bite only as hard as is necessary to pick up an object. I’ve demonstrated with this dog by having him retrieve a cold beer bottle, a cold raw egg, and an pak leaf without crushing it. I started by sitting down on a stool with Tiptoe in sit position next to me so that my left hand could reach his foreface and stroke his skull and shoulders. In my right hand I held a soft leather glove near his mouth. The position could be reversed except that usually it's preferable to have a dog work from the left side. I gave the command “fetch,” and immediately applied enough pressure with the thumb and second finger of my left hand on Tiptoe’s lips, just back of his canine teeth, to induce him to open his mouth. Then I inserted the glove in his mouth and released the pressure on his lips. I gave the command “give” and immediately took the glove from his mouth. At first he wanted to spit the glove out, but I beat him to it with a “give” command. After a few times he waited for me to say “give.” When he didn’t I repeated the first command and applied the pressure a little more sharply. It is very important to apply the pressure within one second after the first command has been given, and likewise to release the pressure immediately after the glove is in the dog’s mouth— except for momentary promptings, of course. The pressure shouldn’t beso hard that it produces pain. If it is too severe, or if you haven’t laid a good foundation with other exercises, the dog very likely will buck like a bronco. Exert just enough pressure to keep your thumb and finger behind the canine teeth. I’ve found this a much better means than pinching ears, yanking on collars, or treading on toes. It is centered in the area with which the trainer is working, and in the dog’s mind is much more quickly associated with taking hold and releasing the object. Tiptoe trained with the glove for 10minute periods twice a day for almost a week. Even when he was opening his mouth automatically, without the lip pressure, I didn’t move on to the next stage right away but continued with “fetch” and “give” until I felt certain that the dog definitely associated the commands with the actions. Many amateur trainers fail because they don’t allow enough time between lessons to permit their dogs to absorb what is being taught. My next step with Tiptoe was to hold the glove about six inches away from his mouth and draw his head forward by applying pressure on his canine teeth. This was repeated until he reached forward for the glove of his own volition. Then I gradually lowered the glove to the ground. When he finally got around to picking the glove off the ground he was ready to start retrieving. Out in the open yard, with Tiptoe at heel, I tossed the glove a few feet ahead of us, waited a second or two, and then gave the command “fetch.” Immediately as I gave the command I caught the dog by his foreface and led him out rapidly to the glove. I didn’t want him bounding off as though we were playing ball, but to retrieve solely on command. I also wanted him to move rapidly toward the glove. I continued taking him out until I could sense, that he was moving ahead of the pressure on his canine teeth. The first day we tried this I took the glove away from him immediately after he’d picked it up. Later on I had him carry it back to the original position before delivering it to me. Toward the end of the third week I put a weight in the glove, tossed it out, and let him go and return on his own. Even then, for two days, I worked him with a light check line. I learned long ago that it’s never advisable to give a dog a chance to make a mistake —at least not until he is thoroughly grounded in his training. In this case, when Tiptoe hesitated or faltered I grasped his foreface and made him execute the command at once. The next step was to toss the glove into some tall grass and brush. Then I substituted a freshly killed pigeon for the glove. Finally I used a live pigeon with a wing shackle across its back and its feet tied to prevent running. Tiptoe was slated for upland quail shooting. Had he been intended for water birds or heavier game I would have substituted a heavier object for the glove, and in the later stages of his training I would have taken him to water instead of grass and brush. An owner may wish to train his dog as a nonslip retriever. Such a dog goes afield in company with a pointing dog to make locations. A nonslip retriever will stay at heel until ordered out to make a retrieve no matter how many other dogs may be out galloping in the field. The term originally was applied to dogs that did not try to slip their collars. When a dog is to work strictly as a nonslip retriever he should be taught to sit in front of the hunter, holding the game, until told to deliver. Then, on command, he should move to heeling position by the left side. While some trainers teach a dog to switch across in front of them to this position, I prefer to have him circle in back of me and come to the left side. If another bird flushes, or if I have to step forward suddenly, I don’t want the dog in my path. For some reason many newly trained retrievers have an aversion to picking up a woodcock. If your dog is one of these, go out with him on his first retrieve of this bird. Pick up the bird yourself and hand it to him. Then take the bird back almost immediately and offer it to him again. Let him carry it a few steps and then take the bird once more. Praise the dog for his work. Next time he may handle a woodcock without hesitation. It is interesting to know that retrieving was used in England and on the Continent to teach trailing to service dogs, before the first World War. I’d like to describe its application to man trailing, because of its simplicity, and then point out the variations for game trailing. Minka, a German shepherd, will serve as an example. I took her out in a field of short grass, placed her in the sitstay position, and walked five paces away. Then I dropped an object. I returned to the dog and sent her out for the retrieve. The purpose was to get it into her head that she was to bring back whatever had been dropped. After she’d -learned to do this at five paces I gradually increased the distance until she was retrieving at 100 paces. Next we moved into tall grass and started the process all over again—at five paces. As the distance increased she found it impossible to locate the object by sight and was forced to start trailing for it. Minka milled about at first. I kept prompting her with a repetition of the command spoken in a normal tone of voice. She caught on quickly. If I’d shouted at her and appeared annoyed or angry it would have confused the dog and prolonged her training. When she was able to run the line consistently on the straight over new ground, I started her in on turns, circles, and double track. She did fine. Game trailing is taught much the same way except that I use a drag or scent stick characteristic of the game the dog is being trained to trail. I buy my scent sticks, but I make drags myself. A drag consists of a stick or bone wrapped with burlap or other cloth and saturated with the game animal’s fat. Sometimes I cover this with hide, but often not. I attach the drag with rope to a long pole and walk on the lee side of the trail so that my own scent won’t get in the way. Then I give a two-word command, such as “game-fetch.” At first I emphasize “fetch,” and gradually change the emphasis so that I can drop the “fetch” eventually and send the dog out to seek a line with the command “game.” The actual word used doesn’t make much difference so long as it registers with the dog. The use of two words is advisable in training dualpurpose dogs that will be working feathers by day and fur by night. Dogs that trail silently should be taught to speak on command. You’ll lose a lot of game at night with silent trailers unless they’re taught to bark at a tree or run with a tonguing hound to let you know where they are. Usually I start the drag first in the open, and then shift to tall grass—just as with the man scent. At the start I run the dog on a leash and have him speak when he reaches the drag. Then I let him retrieve the drag and return it to the starting point. This encourages the dog’s instinct to fight when working varmints. His first idea is to retrieve, but when the varmint puts up a fight the dog will answer it. More than that, he won’t be inclined to leave parts of carcasses afield but will bring them back to you. As soon as the dog actually starts to run the drag line in tall grass, you can give him field problems to work out, by circling and returning on the same line, back-tracking and cutting off, and making figure eights. Blank the line for a short distance and set it over as though the game had taken a long jump or crossed a stream. Make the problems easy at first and keep the blank spots short. After every success take pains to praise the dog. This, I’ve found, helps a great deal to build up his confidence and make him feel he is able to solve any problem on the trail. Occasionally you’ll find a dog that is naturally straight on some given game and won’t pay any attention to other scents. This is likely to be true of the coon hound that grows up among and is broken with other straight cooners. But most dogs are inclined to work any of several game scents. Deer scent is particularly attractive to them, and the temptation to follow it is great. But the little extra work necessary to keep your dog from these side excursions will pay off in the end. Here are a few suggestions that might be helpful. Drag a line that you want the dog to work, and then cross it with a drag or scent-stick of some animal you don’t want him to trail. Run the dog into this on a long check line. If he cuts off the right line jerk him off his feet. If you have taught him a negative command— and by this time you should have—use it here, but not to excess. It’s not a good idea to scold the dog too severely. Put him back on the right line and let him hit the cross trail again. Repeat this until he goes over it without hesitation. Then change locations and give him a new cross drag. Some trainers prefer to use a stick or a throwing chain (a double chain 15 in. long) to register remote control over the dog whenever he does something wrong. These are not thrown hard but gently, and are used to attract the dog’s attention and let him know that he can be reached though running free. These methods of retriever training, as I said previously, can be used with many variations. But I’d like to emphasize this one thing: It’s not so much the methods or tricks used, but the consistency of their application that makes a dog a good retriever. Stick to it, and have patience. The end result will reflect as much credit on you as on your dog.—McDowell Lyon. A complete line of hunting knives featuring specially treated stainless steel has recently been made available to sportsmen. As the result of a new process, the blades are said to combine the advantages of stainless steel with the ability to take, and hold a keen edge.
Question: We’ve always lived in a fairly warm climate and have kept our dog outdoors all the time—summer and winter. Now we’re going to move to a place where in winter it sometimes gets as cold as 10 degrees below zero. Will it still be all right to keep the dog outside?
Question: I am 15 years old and would like to buy a friendly dog to keep around the house and to use in hunting partridges. I do not have too much money to spend but want a good puppy. What about a Brittany spaniel? How much should I expect to pay for one?
Battling buffalo, heavyweight champ. Joe J. Way, Supervisory Park Ranger, Yellowstone National Park, came upon carcass of large female grizzly, badly battered, punctured by hole 1 ½ in. diameter, a bloody mess. Many large buffalo tracks in arc around bear, patches of buffalo hair.
SEEING RED. Minnesota law requires deer hunters to wear bright red. They’re advised to carry a red hanky, too. Reason: people have been shot for whipping out a white one, which can look like a deer’s tail to trigger-happy hunters.—Hank Andrews, Cleveland Press.