Archive for June, 2011

Thunderbird 3D Shoot and Seminar

Monday, June 20th, 2011

I just returned from a great event in New Mexico, the Thunderbird 3D Shoot. This event is special to me because it is the major fundraiser for NM’s 4H Archery Club. I even have some younger cousins that are involved in the club. This year, similar to last year, saw over 300 participants from AZ, NM, TX, and even Mexico.

They invited me down again this year to put on a bowhunting seminar at the lodge on Friday night and it was a a lot of fun. Along with some good “how-to” tips we had a lot of laughs and I shot my bow until my shoulder felt like it was going to fall off! It was good rehab for my shoulder as I am still building up my strength and even better company!

I am already looking forward to next year! Here are some more pics…


Team Outback Outdoors

Bear Hunt In British Columbia

Monday, June 20th, 2011

I just returned from a hunt for black bears in British Columbia and the hunt was the absolute definition of what Outback Outdoors stands for. Wild adventures and hunting with new and old friends. I headed up to the Purcell Mountains in Southern British Columbia to hunt with A/Z Outfitters. Brent Dubois is a third generation outfitter in his totally road less area. His grandfather began guiding in this wilderness in 1954. The equipment and stock date back to the 1940’s.

I arrived after a short 3 hour drive from my house. I was going to be hunting with Kristy Titus from Pursue The Wild and my good friend Rockie Jacobsen from Bugling Bull Game Call Company. We all spent the night in the Cabins At Whitetail Lake. They are rented out for day trips, fishing trips, hunting, snow mobiling and hiking adventures.

After a quick breakfast we all met at the corrals to start and sort through all of our gear. We were going to be riding in on horse back some 24 miles the first day into a main cabin. Because of the limited space on the pack horses we were going to have to bring roughly 60 pounds total for each of us in gear. When you start to add up your clothing, sleeping bag, weapon and camera equipment it tends to add up fast. Everything was laid out and weighed and put in pack boxes or canvas bags.

The pack string was going to consist of 6 pack horses and 6 horses that we would ride. We had 3 hunters and 2 guides and a cook.

It would take them several hours to assemble all of our gear and strategically place it on all of the horses and mules. Some of the stock was better at carrying certain items and he trusted a few of his horses with our expensive camera equipment. In the mean time I found my four legged taxi and tied on my bow scabbard. I was going to bring just a bow while Kristy would bring a rifle and Rockie would carry both. I really wanted to take a bear with my Hoyt. Four hours later the string was ready and the entire crew began our 7 hour trip. Along the way the scenery was going to be fantastic and I kept my still camera at the ready. We also traded places running the video camera to document our wilderness trip.

The first few hours were spent in the narrow draw following Dutch Creek but as we climbed in elevation the valley began to open up. The problem we knew that faced us was the high amount of snow still in the high country and the high water crossings. I have rode horses in the past but never had taken a trip of this length. The secret from getting a sore bottom is to walk a lot and ride the horses up hills and across the water. This will help you from getting to sore and will also keep you in pretty good shape.

My still camera was clicking away at the beautiful grandeur that was in front of me. Pristine wilderness with very little human interaction. This is the kind of hunting that I love. Along the way we saw elk, deer and mountain goats. The huge avalanche slides were still covered in snow and the trail was difficult to find at times due to the snow level. These horses have made this trip dozens of times before so they were pretty much on auto pilot.

After a long but awesome ride in we had made it to the main cabin. The accommodations were amazing for being this far in. Two main cabins and several out buildings. We had nice beds and a wood stove in our cabin and the other was the main eating cabin and its where the guides would sleep. After taking off the steel bars used to protect the cabin and welcome mats filled with nails for the grizzly bears we unpacked and got our gear ready for the first hunt. The weather was very nice going in but clouds soon rolled in and the skies opened up as it rained for the next 12 hours. We opted to go out anyway and we rode about 3 miles up the trail and sat and glassed the first avalanche slide we came to. The only thing we spotted were mountain goats and elk. Bears are more of a fair weather critter and do not like being out in the rain too much.

If you plan on hunting in the harsh spring climate of the mountains you better have good rain gear and quality hunting equipment. This is no place to find out that your gear has failed you. I stayed warm and dry and the camera equipment did as well. After a night of no bears spotted we headed back for a warm fire and and a good hardy meal.



The next day the weather cleared and we decided to head to another cabin about 10 miles further up the drainage. We packed up all our gear and enough food for 3 days and rode the horses further up the trail. We had to negotiate the deep river and it all went off without a hitch. The country opened up more and there were slides to glass and greener grass where we could locate hungry bears. The second camp was much like the first. Warm and roomy and full of all the amenities you could want in a wilderness camp.

My excitement level was high on my third day and the weather was once again cooperating. We had just gotten off of the horses when Fred the guide spotted a black bear on a distant slide. After sizing him up and making sure he was a boar the Hoyt was taken from the scabbord and the long stalk began. I was going to have to go up the far East side of the slide in hopes of intercepting the bear. He was feeding along the tall willow brush and occasionally we would catch a glimpse of him. Once I was half way up the slide I had to rely on hand signals from the crew below. After nearly 45 minutes and a climb that yanked the breath from my lungs we staged by a big spruce tree. I looked down the slope and saw the guide motioning for me to draw my bow. I switched into panic mode and began glassing the hill side. I could not see very far due to the angle of the hill and the tall brush. After several minutes I spotted a set of black ears.

I could not get a range on him but knew he was close to 60 yards. I had to get closer so I dropped down and began working my way closer to the bruin. He must have heard our approach because he was staring right down on us but did not run off. These bears do not see many people so they are a little more tolerant of strange forms walking around. I finally ranged the bear at 53 yards. I did not have a clear shot and wanted to get closer if at all possible. I slowly kept walking toward the bear and found a lane made from a fresh slide which would lead my Gold Tip right to the bear. I ranged him one last time and got a reading of 41 yards. I made sure my camera man, Rockie was on him and drew back. I settled the pin on the near straight up shot and gently squeezed the release. I could see my orange wrap right in the sweet spot as the bear ran off. He went only 50 yards into the dark timber before piling up. I had my first spot and stalk bear and I could not think of a more prettier place to do it than in British Columbia.








If you are interested in a class A hunting operation for either archery or rifle hunts be sure to contact Brent Dubois at A/Z Outfitters. They specialize in black bear, grizzly bear, mule deer, white tail deer, elk, moose and mountain goat. There is no draw for most tags in British Columbia so reward yourself to a trip of a life time.

Rockie and Kristy both took good bears as well but that is for another story.













Scouting California Bears

Friday, June 17th, 2011

Scar Face/pumpkin head

The excitement level is rising with every trip into the mountains and the anticipation for the opener of bear season is becoming obsessive. For me, scouting for any big game can never start early enough or maybe it is just my excuse to get more time in the mountains. Either way it is paying off both for deer and bear.

This past Wednesday I met up with friend and Outback Outdoors camera man, Chris Callinan, for our second trip into the mountains checking

White Nose

the trail cams we have set for bears.  The state of California does not allow baiting as a means to take bears. So in the backcountry of the Eastern Sierra’s we rely on signs of bear activity to determine where our cameras will be most usefully placed and our glassing concentrated. Chris and I have been focusing out efforts to one deep canyon. Lined with pinion junipers and aspen pockets, the lush grassy parks are showing sign of an active population of bears.


A nice chocolate bear gnawing post

Scratching post

One tell tail sign of high bear activity in the area is a railroad tie fence post. This oil soaked object is being used as a scratching post or a scent marker. The top quarter gnawed away giving a great indicator of the size and dominance of the bears in the area. This location along a high mountain cattle grazing fence line is turning up some great pictures.

Bear trail inspection

Another indicator is a fascinating sliver of aspens displaying signs that many generations of bears have been lumbering under the quaking canopy. There are trails beaten into the soft earth by the tight gait of bears following in the same foot step as the previous bear. Nearly every aspen is clawed or chewed upon as markers and scratch posts with many showing claw marks nearly to the top.

White Nose

We will be heading back in to the area at the end of June to see what these areas are producing.  All this leading up to what looks to be a potentially awesome California archery bear hunt. 

Spot Hogg Archery Products Partners with Outback Outdoors

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

Press release from Spot-Hogg

“We’re proud to be a part of Outback Outdoors and the fresh perspective they’re bringing to the notion of hunting “videos”. We’re stoked to watch what unfolds this fall with the dedicated foursome and what they will anchor to the ground using our products.”  Spot-Hogg

At Outback Outdoors, we too, are excited for this partnership/sponsorship with Spot-Hogg (even though we have been using their sights for a while) and look forward to teaming up and arrowing some trophy animals this upcoming bowhunting season!

Check out their full announcement at


Team Outback Outdoors

Outback Outdoors’ Hoyt Bow Winner is Ready to Rock!

Thursday, June 2nd, 2011

Just got a message and this picture from Outback Outdoors’ 1st Quarter Gear Giveaway winner Andrew Basabe with his new Hoyt Rampage XT….

“If you watched the video when I received the call from Trevon Stoltzfus at Outback Outdoors last May it was obvious I was shocked and in awe of the exciting news I was informed. I just received the new 2011 Hoyt rampage XT last Tuesday. When I pulled the bow out of the box I was very impressed with its appearance. I quickly ran into my garage and set it up. The next day I went to the local pro shop and compared the Rampage XT with the CRX 32 since a cast magnesium riser is the only feature that differentiates the two. I couldn’t believe the similarities and the outcome both bows performed. Long story short, I love the bow! The upcoming 3D shoots will be a blast with the Rampage XT in hand. My biggest passion is pursuing the elusive Wapiti and I am confident this bow won’t disappoint me.

Thank you Trevon and the rest of the OO crew for the opportunity and you can always count on me, as well as my friends and family, to stay tuned for more exciting webisodes.

Keep the wind in your face…”

Andrew Basabe

Mossy Oak Meeting

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011

I am headed to my annual meeting for regional pro staff managers in West Point Mississippi at the Mossy Oak head quarters. The 25 managers as well as the main people behind Mossy Oak meet for 4 days and go over a new focus for the year. We also have a number of licensee companies come in and demonstrate as well as educate us on their new products. It is a very enjoyable time down there.

Outback Outdoors is proud to have Mossy Oak as a sponsor because we do not only believe in their camo but more importantly the company itself. Spending time with Toxey Haas and his administration is a true pleasure. These core group of guys are some of the best in the industry. They not only care about hunting but more of late about the preservation of the resource and the heritage of passing along this sport of hunting to the next generation.

My job as a regional pro staff manager is to help promote the brand and the message that Mossy Oak stands for. I have a set number of guys and gals who go to everything from 3d archery shoots to major store openings and help promote our life style. Hunting and the outdoors are passed along to young and old. We are familiar with the licensee’s products and help promote them.

One of the benefits I get is to try out new products from these companies and pass along my opinion on them. I am always looking for new pro staff members so if you live in one of the following states shoot me an e mail. Montana, Nebraska, Wyoming, North Dakota and South Dakota.