April 19, 2014

Elyria
Sunny
48°F
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Late Season Bird Hunts

Dr Tom Mahl shooting pheasant

A twenty mile an hour wind is whipping through the foxtails and the switch grass as I lie on my belly in the snow. Propped up on my elbows, I hold a camera I scarcely know how to use, but offers me the best chance at getting a decent shot. About three feet in front Read More…

Jousting

Jousting armor weighs up to 150 pounds, so it helps to have a Squire (or three) assist with your equipment.

I would like to tell you that once the armor is fitted, the helmet goes on and once the visor is down, Charlie Andrews is all business, but that wouldn’t be the truth. Equal parts champion and court jester his six foot four, two hundred and fifty pound frame mounted on a war horse makes Read More…

Mapleing

Mapleing is the process of tapping a Maple tree’s fluids, pouring it into huge collecting tanks, boiling it down to a thicker sugary syrup, pouring it off and starting again.

I received a proper grammatical education in the Elyria City Schools, and I know the difference between a noun and a verb because of those good teachers. That being said, I don’t know how to convey, in a single word, the process of tapping a tree’s fluids, pouring it into huge collecting tanks, boiling it Read More…

Off-Season Archery to Keep You in Practice

The range at Spencer Lake is well maintained, but can get a little muddy in the spring, so be sure to wear boots when pulling your arrows.

Growing up, I was never much of an archer. Truth be told, I think my first shot went into the ground three feet in front of me. The second shot went sideways, some place unknown. These memories come back every year when I’ve taken a little time off the range. But shooting a bow is Read More…

Outfitters & Guides

Lady guide with Lab and pheasant. PHoto by Tom Mahl

Find something you love to do, figure out a way to make it pay, and you’ll never work another day in your life. So goes the old saying, or something like that. A few of us follow our hearts to this advice, usually in retirement. However, running your own business isn’t for everyone and before Read More…

Turkey Shoots

Do Not Straighten

Turkey Shoots could well be the original all-American sport. Going back to way before colonial times, the tradition rests on the informality of a few folks getting together for a good-natured shooting competition where anybody could win, and everybody eventually does. What may surprise you about this sport is the make-up of competitors. If you’d Read More…

Wildnerness Survival

Center Sunshine Mencke and in red daughter Armen Mencke

I’m often asked a question that begins as an inquiry about my gear and ends up revealing a person’s fear about their vulnerability in the woods. For the most part, they are just afraid of the unknown, and that’s the most natural kind of fear there is, but I’m always glad to help.   Your Read More…

Scarface the Bear

Jim skull scarface  mixed LightingIII_main photo

Every hunter dreams of an adventure in Alaska, the last American frontier. Few of us will get to see Alaska, even fewer will get to hunt the Grizzly bear. But to Grafton’s Jim Dowdell, the only way to dream is to dream BIG. Big trip, big guns, and a very big bear!   In September Read More…

The Hole in the Horn Buck …

provided rav buck

I don’t know how many times I’ve had somebody tell me about a “huge buck” only to be underwhelmed when I actually laid eyes on the beast. I guess it’s all relative, and when you’ve lived in the outdoors as long as I have, the uncommon gets pretty common. There are so many fine bucks Read More…

A Winter Wonderland in Ohio’s Hocking Hills

conkle's ice

From dormancy of winter we approach the re-genesis of spring when the whole world seems to wait to awaken from an ice age. With the first thaw the clinging icicles will again become the cascading falls. As the snow melts we again find the lesser trails we knew before the freeze. The deep stone gorges Read More…