Archives for February 2009

Pebble prospect's foes, fans testify at hearing

From the Anchorage Daily News (2/28/2009)

Alaska lawmakers this year are beginning to look deeper into the massive, controversial Pebble project.

The debate over Pebble involves a proposal to build one of the world’s biggest hard-rock mines in the headwaters of the world’s biggest sockeye salmon fishery. Many consider it a battle on the scale of the duel over oil exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Read the entire article here.

Legendary Triple Drop Tine Buck Dies

triple_drop_tine_buckA buck that had become a sort of local celebrity due to its phenomenal size and the tree huge drop tines hanging from its rack, has died, falling victim to brutal winter weather.

While the rack on “Triple Drop Tine” or TD as the local Minnesota residents called him was impressive, what made the buck even more unique was that such a widely observed, photographed and filmed deer managed to elude hunters, and one would even think some poachers, during its 8 ½ years of life. This was no high-fence, pen-raised animal, but a free-ranging whitetail.

The deer lived in the Yucatan Valley area and had been filmed by at least a couple of camera crews with outdoor television shows and had hunters traveling from as far away as Florida to try hunting him.

In the summers, the buck could regularly be spotted in Matt Semling’s food plot behind his house, feeding in plain view of the road.

“Any day out of the summer, starting right away in June when I was on my way home from work, I would always know when he was in my food plot because there would be between five and fifteen vehicles pulled over on the road,” Semling told Greg Schieber for the Caledonia Argus.

“He’d show himself all the time when not being hunted,” he said.

But once hunting season opened, the buck would disappear. Semling, a hunter, told Schieber that a week before bow season started each year, he would go in to pull his trail cameras out.

“Me being in there 10 minutes was all it took to turn him nocturnal. He must have known the bowhunting season was close. Time after time I’d see him during the hunting season but the only time was when I was in my truck going down the driveway. He was a super smart buck,” Semling said. Friends of the landowner traveled from all over, but never had any better luck. At least 20 to 25 people hunted Semling’s property or the surrounding properties each year and every year, they returned without TD.

The deer was discovered dead behind a barn Semling was about to burn Feb. 7. The landowner called local DNR Conservation Officer Scott Fritz to report the find and secure a permit for its possession. The two went over the body looking for wounds that would indicate it had been shot by a bullet or hit by an arrow, but found nothing. It also had no broken bones, such as those suffered from being hit by a vehicle.

Fritz reasoned that the buck — which was a single tine buck at 3 ½, a double-tine buck at 5 ½ and grew the third tine at the age of 7 ½ —must have died of natural causes. Since it is not evidence in a poaching case nor can be claimed by another hunter, Semling becomes the owner of the local legend, which gross scored 181 inches. 

To read Schieber’s complete article at the Caledonia Argus, click here.

More Research Resources

Another very useful from South Cox on some additional research resources to assist you in gathering information on the area(s) that you will need to hunt, once you decide on the type of country that you want for your backcountry hunt.

Though Ive been guilty of disregarding my own advice in the past, one thing you never want to do is go off of just one source when you are spending 10 days of valuable vacation time.  I always try to back up a hot tip by cross checking it through other sources.  Regardless of whether you’re able to collaborate the information or not, I always like to have a back-up plan.  A couple of years ago I hunted a new spot in Colorado with a few other friends in the hunting industry.  Everything we’d heard about the place was exactly what I’d wanted to hear, remote, tough access, alpine and the guy we’d learned about it from had reliable first-hand information.  The prior year a couple of buddies had both taken big bucks out of the same spot during rifle season and had seen a ton of bucks.  The hike in was a killer, as tough as any I’ve made in recent years, and we even had llamas packing in the bulk of our gear.  Opening day, we collectively saw one doe and I saw 2 mountain lions.  We pulled out without a backup plan and only ended up filling one tag out of 4 deer tags and 4 elk tags.

Read the full article here.

The Idaho Fish & Wildlife Foundation is gearing up for the 19th 2009 Trip Auction


Brighten your day knowing you’re ready to bid at 9:00 am Mountain Time!

Proceeds from the 19th Trip Auction will support: “BE OUTSIDE” – The Idaho Children and Nature Network program. The Network’s mission is to connect children with nature in Idaho from backyards to mountaintops.

**LOOK for the “BE OUTSIDE” logo – it means the trip is suitable for children of varying ages.

Become a winning bidder & experience Idaho’s greatest gift, the outdoors!

Here are just some of the types of auction items:

Day & Overnight Trips

Wildlife Research Trips


Wolf pup counts

Sage grouse lek counts

Upland Bird Hunt

Harlequin Duck River Float

Family Camping



Bird Watching

Lots More!


Email family and friends about these unique Idaho outdoor adventures. There are trips for everyone and for a great cause!


For more information:



Bull Run Chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Banquet





Saturday, April 4, 2009, 4:30 p.m.

Burke Volunteer Fire Department Hall

9501 Old Burke Lake Road

Burke, Virginia

Dinner, Raffles, Silent and Live Auctions


Carl Hampton  (703) 323-8671  Rich Vigue  703-317-0441

SINGLE $ 65  COUPLE $ 95  YOUTH $ 15


**Ticket includes meal and 1 year Membership in RMEF

**A corporate table includes 1-Sponsor Membership, 3 – annual memberships and meals for 8 guests.

**Pre-Banquet Raffle is a Sony BRAVIA KDL-42V4100 42″ LCD TV or $1000 cash.

1 Ticket for $10

3 Tickets for $20

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation is an international, non-profit organization whose mission is to ensure the future of elk, other wildlife and their habitat.


VA. Hunters Have Record Bear and Deer Harvests in 2008-09

Wildlife biologists with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (VDGIF) have compiled preliminary figures for bear, deer and turkey harvests for the 2008-09 fall seasons. Wildlife Division Director Robert Ellis commented, “Notable results of the 2008-09 seasons include record black bear and white-tailed deer harvests. While the fall turkey harvest was down, clearly there is good hunting to be had in the Commonwealth.”

Black Bear — A record number of 2,204 bears were harvested during the 2008-09 Virginia bear seasons. The figure represents the combined kill from archery, muzzleloader, and firearms. Bear Project Leader Jaime Sajecki, noted, “This year’s record harvest was 35% higher than the previous record of 1,633 bears set in the 2006-07 bear seasons.” The harvest in 2007-08 was 1,517 bears. West Virginia also had a record bear harvest this year. Read more »

White-tailed Deer — During the 2008-09 deer season, a total of 253,678 deer were harvested by hunters in Virginia. Deer Project Leader Matt Knox, announced, “This new record represents a 4% increase from the 242,792 deer reported killed last year. The harvest is also 16% higher than the last 10 year average of 212,780 deer killed by hunters.” Read more »

Fall Wild Turkey — Fall turkey hunters harvested 3,505 birds in the 2008-09 season. This was 26% below last year’s reported kill (4,759 wild turkeys). Small Game Furbearer Program Manager Gary Norman indicated the harvest decline was a result of several factors including poor reproduction, good mast conditions and fall season regulation changes. Read more »

The Department would like to thank those hunters and game check stations for providing the wing feather samples so reproduction can be monitored. These data help the Department gain a better understanding of turkey population trends and harvests.

For more information about Black Bear, White-tailed Deer and Wild Turkeys, visit the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries website. The website also contains information about wildlife management, hunting regulations and hunting opportunities within the Commonwealth.

Elk Foundation Bidders Help Pennsylvania Elk Tag Auction

 MISSOULA, Mont.—The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation knows how much premier elk tags can generate for conservation, and RMEF reps on Friday night helped Pennsylvania’s first-ever special elk tag raise $28,500.

The tag was auctioned at the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF) convention in Nashville.

“Congratulations to NWTF. We’re always pleased when good money is raised to conserve habitat for elk and other wildlife and it was gratifying for us to be there, participate in the auction and help this tag bring a respectable amount,” said David Allen, president and CEO of RMEF.

The tag appeared seconds away from selling for $8,500 when RMEF reps jumped into the bidding to ensure the tag brought a worthy sum. When the auctioneer finally finished, the cheering crowd erupted at the total raised for conservation in the Keystone State.

Allen said, “We knew what we thought was a fair market value for that tag and we wanted to make sure it brought at least that amount. Our volunteers and the Pennsylvania Game Commission have worked hard for a lot of years to get the state’s elk herd to the level it’s at today. We also know that someday we will likely be selling this tag ourselves and we wanted to invest in its long-term success. All the money ends up in wildlife conservation and that is our overall focus anyway.”

A bidder from Pennsylvania wound up with the tag.

“It was great as the buyer is a longtime member of RMEF as well as other conservation groups. He and his wife are Pennsylvania residents and they told me later that they wanted to make sure the tag went home to an in-state hunter. We couldn’t be happier about that as well,” Allen added.

Opportunities to hunt elk in Pennsylvania also will be awarded though a general drawing. Fifty-nine lucky hunters who submit an application and a $10 fee will receive a tag.

In addition to stewarding elk habitat in the Keystone State, the Elk Foundation also is enhancing conservation education in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. Together, the partners are building a new Elk Country Visitor Center in western Pennsylvania.

ElkNut’s PlayBook Update!

ElkNuts PlayBookThis is the latest update on ElkNut’s Playbook that I have received from Paul.  The publishers worked through this past weekend & assure him that he should have several hundred of them by Friday & they will start shipping them out immediately. Everyone should have their PlayBooks next week for sure in their hands! All inside pages are 80# weight & gloss coated to help as much as possible against moisture damage. The outside cover is also glossy with an extra UV coating at 110# weight. They did this for the best possible durability within reason. Paul also had the font size enlarged to a #-10, he wanted a bit larger print for guys that are wiser! (half blind) He also opted for a durable core binding instead of stitching or glues. The reason for this is so you can open it up where they may need to quickly & it will stay open right there & not try to close on you! There are several blank pages in the middle & back of book for notes. Those pages say “notes” on them. They did their best to really put out a nice long lasting PlayBook!!! They wanted a Cadillac not a Volkswagen! Maybe that’s why it’s taking longer than expected?

This is book has gotten me gitty as a school girl!!!

Jury Awards $157 Million in Tree Stand Death

Being that I do not know any of the details of this case, I cannot comment on the points that I have shown below. But, in my opinion we may now be seeing more of these cases in the news, which in-turn will drive the costs of treestands up! But, I would like to know if the gentleman was wearing his fall restraint properly.

Jurors went beyond what was requested by attorneys and have awarded a Lafayette, Ind., woman $157 million in a wrongful death lawsuit against the makers of a tree stand that malfunctioned and caused her husband’s death.

This is a very tragic accident, but it could’ve been prevented if the tree stand was not malfunctioning. If you are someone who has been involved in a similar incident in which a loved one has wrongfully died, you are completely within your right to file a wrongful death lawsuit. You can find a professional attorney at

Jurors only deliberated for around an hour before reaching the verdict Tuesday.

Carol Simonton filed the lawsuit in February 2006 after an incident where her husband, Timothy, 42, was found hanging from a tree. He had used the stand to climb the tree while scouting for deer season.

Filing a lawsuit against the guilty party is the first step in achieving justice for your loved one. As well as Simonton, there will be many people across the country who have contacted a lawyer in their area, to hear their expertise about how to go about a wrongful death claim, in order to get the compensation that you deserve.

Simonton’s attorney, Mike Phelps, had sought a $100 million award, and was surprised when he learned of the higher amount awarded by jurors. The complaint had sought $6,000 for funeral expenses and $1.5 million for lost wages based on what Timothy Simonton would have earned over 30 years.

Named in the suit were L & L Enterprises of Hattiesburg, Miss., Ol’ Man Tree Stands of Jay, Fla., and TSR Inc. of Pace, Fla. No one representing any of the companies was present for the trial.

The Associated Press left a phone message seeking comment from Ol’ Man Tree Stands and TSR Inc. Wednesday night and spoke to a person named in the suit for L & L, who said he was no longer with the company.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, TSR recalled about 9,000 Ol’ Man tree stands and about 500 replacement pin sets in 2007.

This should be a reminder that, we all should wear our fall restraint/safety harness systems while hanging treestands, sitting in them, climbing in and out of them. I think that our loved ones would much rather have us arund than the money! This being said if you have ever unfortunately lost someone due to a defect or similar circumstances, you might want to get in touch with someone like The Law Offices of George Salinas.

You Don’t Need a Weatherman


I am not sure that I buy into the who “Global Warming” issue as the planet has been goint through changes before we were here and will probably continue to do so, well after we are gone.  But, I stumbled across this article and felt that it was a bit thought provoking!”

If the debate over climate change is closed, why is John Coleman, the founder of the Weather Channel, still trying to prove it’s all a scam?

Well over a quarter-million weathercasts that’s the ballpark figure the 74-year-old founding father of the Weather Channel guesses he’s probably performed in his 55 years in the business. Today, as for the past 15 years, he’s chalked up another weathercast like it’s his job, because it is. This, he tells me, is the best time of his career. [Read more…]