If you’re gearing up for bowhunting season and in the market for a new crossbow, the Barnett RAZR is full of features, lightweight, and looks as sharp as its name suggests. It weighs just 6.4 lbs. and produces speeds up to 400 feet per second. The RAZR has a redesigned quiver that protects broadheads from damage, and its trigger contains an added safety measure to prevent unintentional dry firing.
“Featuring the industry’s first full carbon stock along with Barnett’s proprietary Carbonlite Riser Technology (CRT), the RAZR is extremely light weight, and thanks to titanium side torque plates it’s as strong as they come. The reverse cam system provides for an increase in speed and power stroke without extending the overall length of the bow. The retractable underarm support system adds counterbalance stability to the rear of the bow, giving it that balanced feel shooters desire.”
Photo by: Barnett Crossbows
Chris Parrish, two-time National Wild Turkey Federation Grand National Calling Champion, says all kinds of terrain come into play when you’re hunting wild turkeys, whether it’s big, open hardwood areas or broken terrain. The area you’re hunting affects how you should call because turkeys respond differently to calls depending on the landscape.
Parrish shares his techniques for hunting in big timber areas or when the weather is less than ideal, as well as how to get started using a mouth call.
“Remember when you’re hunting big timber areas, those turkeys will come from greater distances and oftentimes those areas are very open and the turkeys can see from a long distance so you have to set up farther away. But with broken woodlots, you have to get closer in before you set up and call.”
Photo by: National Wild Turkey Federation
More than two years ago, a camera crew followed three teams of hunters as they hunted mature bull elk in Colorado’s Flat Top Wilderness. The result of the crew’s month-long journey and the hunting footage they captured has now been made into a documentary hunting film.
The Trembling Giant is a feature-length film inspired by the beauty of elk camp, the passion for hunting in the rugged Rocky Mountains, and the unique connection between man, animal, and nature.
“While our team navigated the side of a 12,000-foot mountain and traveled the four-hour horseback ride to base camp, a full moon wrapped the Rocky Mountains in the most stunning light,” said Haven Anderson, Creative Director for Danner Boots. “The film came to life at that very moment, when the elk we were packing out faded from our thoughts and the beauty that surrounded flooded in. We wanted to create a film that captured that moment — a piece that is more than just about harvesting a mature bull and instead sharing how any hunt, no matter if you fill your tag or not, is a successful one.”
The Trembling Giant public screening tour, hosted by select Danner retail partners, will then travel across the Western U.S. from August 10–September 6, 2013.
Photo by: National Parks Service
To accomplish any task, it’s helpful to have the right tools. The same goes for hunting dogs. Depending on the type of game you hunt and the tasks you want the dog to perform, there are several factors to consider when choosing the best gun dog. As you can imagine, opinions vary about which hunting dog is best. American Hunter’s Ron Spomer compares some of the most common gun dog breeds and gives his top pick. The winning gun dog may surprise you.
“Hunting dogs are a bit like hunting rifles—they’re all good for something, but none are perfect for everything. Those of us who want it all might be barking up the wrong tree, but we keep searching for the .30-06 of dogs, a breed that comes closest to handling all our hunting chores: find, point, flush, trail, chase and fetch. And clean their own kennels … maybe hunt antlers in spring … guard the castle and look handsome doing it. That’s a good dog. But it ain’t gonna happen. Nevertheless, we can sort out those breeds that come closest to our ideal.”
Photo by: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
Compound bows and crossbows store tremendous energy, so much so that releasing a string at full draw without an arrow (dry firing) can shatter limbs in a single occurrence. No wonder the vibration, or sound, of an arrow’s release can cause the ducking phenomenon known as “jumping the string.” This is particularly likely if a game animal suddenly hears the creak of your bow limb or jacket brushing against the bark of a tree and becomes alarmed. In this case, the softer the sound of release, the better your chances.
Limbsaver has been a specialist in bow-quieting innovation for many years, offering products that absorb vibration in both compounds and crossbows. Compound users will benefit from the Broad Band Limbsavers that attach to the solid or split limbs of your compound. Reducing limb vibration translates to a quieter shot.
Stabilizers add balance and mass to the bow (thus reducing vibration). Limbsaver’s AWS Modular Stabilizer allows you extend the length of the unit by adding modules one at a time. Stabilizers multitask by reducing hand-shock and bow torque.
Crossbow users can double down on a variety of vibration reduction products in a single package with the Crossbow Silencing System. This includes the Broad Band Limbsaver mentioned above, string and cable leaches, stirrup dampeners, and a Bolt Retainer Dampener (a small yet important feature that targets the bolt retainer). It’s easy to attach and will instantly make a difference.
Visit Limbsaver’s website for the full line of vibration dampening products.
Fishing for largemouth bass on a lake you’ve never fished before doesn’t mean you need new tactics. Terry Tuma of Outdoor News says he frequently receives questions about locating bass on a new lake. According to Tuma, locating fish is more about general patterning than finding specific sweet spots.
First, he writes, you need to gain an understanding of basics like water temperature and clarity, and types of cover. Then consider seasonal movement to determine specific locations.
“Trying to pattern fish means thinking about their movement and likely haunts. Too often we think of a pattern as the type of bait or lure. It’s a live bait rig for walleyes or Texas rig for bass. But before we think of that, understand why fish are in a specific area, then apply the appropriate lure.
“Ask yourself, ‘What are the fish doing right now?’ Are they spawn or post spawn? It varies on different types of water because of different clarity and depth, both of which affect temperature.”
Photo by: SC.gov
How would you like to walk a mile in the shoes of your favorite cast member from A&E’s Duck Dynasty? That may now be possible, as the Robertson Family, owners of the Duck Commander Company, has signed a deal with Pro Line Manufacturing to release a new line of footwear.
The Duck Commander Footwear Collection includes eight different styles of boots. The Robertsons promise the footwear will be high-quality items, intended to help properly gear hunting enthusiasts. By partnering with Pro Line, they’re utilizing that company’s 38 years of experience in making performance outdoor footwear.
The Duck Commander Footwear Collection can be purchased at a major sporting goods or retail store near you.
Photo (bottom): The New York Times
Spotlighting deer is illegal when hunting, but the practice is legal — and beloved by many hunters — in Pennsylvania. Recreational spotlighting, known as “spotting,” is a common practice by hunters, kids, and families who enjoy looking for wildlife at night.
The problem, according to Rich Palmer, director of the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Bureau of Wildlife Protection, is that poachers also use bright lights to spot and shoot deer at night, and it’s difficult for wildlife law enforcement officers to determine if a light is being used simple for spotting, or for poaching. Some wonder if it’s time to ban spotlighting altogether.
“Poachers are especially tempted by large-racked bucks, which are in bigger supply these days because of antler restrictions. Whether there are more poachers now than before, it’s hard to say. But certainly the extra large-racked deer are attractive to a certain element.”
It’s legal until 11 p.m. year-round, except for those times when the two-week firearms deer season is open, and when extended firearms deer seasons are open in certain wildlife management units.
You can’t have a firearm or bow in your vehicle when you’re spotting at any time, and it’s always illegal to shine your light on livestock, houses and other buildings and photoelectric cell.
Photo by: OutdoorHub
Camouflage has come along way from the blotchy green military patterns of the 1970s. A host of transitions has seen their gear match bark, leaves, twigs, and open terrain, yet Cabela’s still managed to make blending into a background interesting with its new ColorPhase technology. Better yet, it actually changes color. Holy chameleon, Batman! Here’s how it works:
Cabela’s revolutionary ColorPhase is the first camouflage clothing to be printed with rapid-change, temperature-activated dyes. In mild temperatures, these special dyes allow certain elements in the patterns to show as vivid greens that blend perfectly with early-season foliage. When temperatures drop, the greens change to browns or grays.
Under typical conditions, ColorPhase changes from warm to cold colors at approximately 65 degrees. Body heat, sunlight, moisture and wind can affect the color-change process. ColorPhase is used exclusively in Cabela’s two new camouflage patterns: Zonz Woodlands and Zonz Western. It is available in a limited number of garments constructed of cotton and cotton-polyester fabrics.
Check out this quick video clip of the new product:
Mathews has been a leader in compound bow technology for more than a decade, so it was only a matter of time until they entered the crossbow arena. Launched under the Mission brand, the new bow has a number of engineering factors that make it a prime prospect for anyone thinking of launching the horizon. First, the Mission MXB-320 and 360 models are engineered as very shooter-friendly bows weighing just 6.5 lbs., nearly two pounds lighter than some competitors. Instead of a standard stirrup, which adds length to the bow, the MXB has a cleated, no-slip tread on the riser, which shortens the bow and makes it easier to cock.
Although light and compact, the MXB-320 launches at 320 fps with 91.4 ft-lbs. of energy using a Mission 400-grain bolt, all from a 12-inch power stroke. The MXB 360 features a 14-inch power stroke and top speed of 360 fps. By comparison, bows used for elephant and Cape buffalo rarely have more than 100 ft-lbs. of energy, so this Mission will handle anything in North America.
Power to the bolt is delivered by split limbs and a Hunter cam system. Draw weight is adjustable from 100–180 lbs. and can be reduced completely should some type of adjustment or repair be necessary in the field. The forend is molded composite with rubber inlays and a safety flange. The stock has 1.5 inches of adjustment so that it accommodates various lengths of pull, while the trigger is set at 3 lbs., ideal for accurate shooting.
Mission is introducing the MXBs into the hunting arena, but they’re also offering the MXB-320 tactical and the MXB-360 tactical with rail options. The hunting models are available in lost camo or black, with the tactical versions only available in black. In summary, the MXB-320/360 is a light, compact, shooter-friendly crossbow that can handle any hunting situation. MSRP for the 360 is a competitive $899, while the 320 lists for just $699. They’re easy to cock, have two safety features, and come with several optional accessory packages. Just add a Limbsaver crossbow sling, throw the MXB over your shoulder, and you’re ready to hunt.