Sunday, October 30, 2011

Hawke Optics- Gear Review

The Lead Off

  Living out West I feel that one of the most beneficial things that you can have with you while hunting is your optics.  You can shoot what you can't see.  And when your glasses hill sides 30 to 500 yrds away you need to be able to clearly identify your prey of choice.  So to give you a little back story, I have been given the opportunity to use Hawke Optics Endurance Phase Corrected 10x42 binos over the last few months.  Prior to using the Hawke Endurance PC, I was using an $90 dollar pair of budget binos because I had broken my last pair of quality mid level binos, surprise, surprise.  When I open the package up and glassed a hillside a few hundred yards from my house, I can honestly say my reaction was, "Wow, I like these."  To say the least I was impressed right out of the box, but more investigating needed to be done.

Three Point of Great Binos

1.  Durability- I beat up gear like you won't believe.  I typically wear out 1 to 2 pairs of boots a year, camo is a 1 season deal and I have even worn off the Lost Camo dip on Matthews Reezen's handle in 9 months. It's safe to say if it can make it through a few hunting trips with me it will be more than sufficient for the average hunter.  The rubberized outter layer is rezealant enought to be able to be drug through fields, my truck and my 6 year old son who thinks he is Teddy Roosevelt on safari most of the time.  The rubberized texture allowed me to grip them while covered in sweat on my pig hunt and dripping wet when I was scouting about for a new blind in the rain for duck hunting.  I will admit I did drop them about three times and I was surprised to find that no damage was done to them at all, not even the rubberized coating was scratched up.  So far there is really nothing I have not thrown at them that they did not take.

2. Clarity- Durability is great, but if you can't clearly see in low light and long distances what is the use.  Well I can tell you that the Endurance has both.  I shoot in a varirity of differnet locations, rolling hills of oaks, tight deep canyons choked full of pines and sage, and the high desert with vast open spaces all with their different challanges and unique visual quirks.  I was pleasantly suprised when no matter where I was able to clearly identify and pick out game I feel I would have missed with my old set up.  Their multi-coated lens are the real deal, but still do not have a strange tint to them while you are viewing distances.  Looking through the Endurance PCs compared to my old mid-level bino is like switching from regular TV to HDTV. Their is no comparison on how much more clear than anything I have used at or near their price range.

3. Value- Lets be honest with ourselves, though we would like to spent $2000 dollars on our optics and get the top of the line of everything, most of us can't swing that.  We are family men and women or young guys just starting out not CEOs and Millionaires.  But when you compare what the Endurance PC's offer to the top of the line Binos in your favorite Camo Box store you see that there is a case for saving a few hundred buck and going with the Endurance PCs.  I'm not saying your settling for inferior product, but instead your not paying for the name, fancy packaging and manuels. They work plain and simple and you are not going to get a better bino at or near that price range.  These are truly a killer deal.


  So to put this all together now, Durability, Clarity and Value are what I see as the biggest selling points for the Endurance PC's.  You can beat the living tar out of them and they will hold up.  And when you spent 16 hours a day in the feild like I do you will have confidence the the clarity of the optics will allow you to see what you are looking for.  Everyone who has picked up my Binos has said the same thing, "Wow, those are clear!"  And everyone can't believe they are only $220 for the 10x42s.  So for about the same price as your Scent free/smell good/ hunting jacket or a few dozen arrows you can have top notched optics that will allow you to find your game.  When was the last time your jacket did that?  If you are teetering back and forth on whether to pull the trigger on something just a little more expensive,  remember you may only get one glance at whats across the valley from you before its gone. And if you can't see it you can't stalk it and if you can stalking you won't get a chance at that trophy.

Check them out at the below places-

Thanks all,

The Bearded Boar
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Saturday, October 29, 2011

My new Diablo Paddlesports Adios!

So here is my new Killing machine the Diablo Paddlesports Adios. This beauty is an American made multi-purpose water craft that is going to put the hurt on some ducks and fish in California.  No water born game is safe now that I have endless mobility in the water.  From the Kelp Beds of the California coastline to the marshes of the Central Valley to the High Sierras be patient little fish and ducks, I will harvest you soon enough.

  So far the stable platform has allows me to fish in a more natural position, standing up!  It is much easier to identify these fish and get in close.  The crazy thing is that I was even paddling through 8" of water with it looking for fish, no regular Kayak can do that.  So with that being said I am looking forward to going new places and being able to take on new challanges with my Diablo Adios!

A big thanks to Diablo for making this happen,


The Bearded Boar

PS.  I smell a new duck and fishing video coming down the pipe.
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Friday, October 28, 2011

Well Here is your results for the Camera Mount Give Away, Congrats guys and I will contact you to finalize what you guys want.

The Arrow Reaper

True Random Number Generator  8Powered by RANDOM.ORG

Mr Chuck Condor!

True Random Number Generator  1Powered by RANDOM.ORG

Thank you for those who participated and better luck to you all next time.

The Bearded Boar
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Monday, October 24, 2011

  I was getting my gear ready this weekend for my hunts this coming week and I was freaking out because I could not find my knife.  It is a 14" PIC Bowie Knife that was made in the 1950's in Germany.  It is just a knife but this summer it became MY knife. I NEED this knife with me at all times in the field and I was worried I was not going to find it.  I mean I did leave my headlamp in the field last time out. But, I did find it and that got me thinking, what other things that are "Musts" haves for me in the field whether it is a piece of gear or a ritual of the hunt.

  We all have our "Thing" or "Things" that we do before, during and after the hunt.  Weather is wearing a lucky hat, playing the same Lead Zeppelin song, getting your lucky arrow ready or even a post hunt drink to commemorate a good day in the field.  We all have some quirk that we do whether or not you believe in luck and some are more zany than and entertaining than others.  I  don't believe in luck, fate or chance, to me things are set in motion from above and they are what they are.  But, that does not mean I don't want my Matthews or HS Strut hat on my head or my Easton ST. Axis 340 with the single blue and two white blazers with the work KILL written on it.  Heck no, I am a man of routine in the field that is my thing.

  People who know me may not believe it, but I have a militant regiment when it comes to getting ready for the hunt, how I dress and even how I draw my bow.  My though is if I do everything the same way 10,000 times the one time I am really needing consistency it will be there.  I even go as far as making sure my arrows are completely lined up when I make them.When my arrow is nocked the NAP Bloodrunner 2 blades are horizontal to the ground, the Easton ST. Axis logo is perfectly inline with the blades and the Single blue blazer is in the Vertical position with two whites followed by a neon green H nock.  It must be that way for me.  Some call it OCD, I call it precision.  

  A friend of mine has been a guide in Alaska for many years and is a die hard bear hunter.  His ritual is after every kill he takes a shot of good Bourbon in reverence for the hunt and the life they took. He has a deep respect for the animals that he hunts and that is how he shows it. 

We all have something we do to make our hunts our hunts, what are some of your ticks or rituals that you do before, in or after the hunt?  Leave a comment I'd love to hear back from you.


The Bearded Boar

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Outdoor Blogger Network is 1yr old

Well let give a shout out to Outdoor Blogger Network, they are now 1 year old and have been a huge help to me.  Good for you guys and if you are a blogger you need to check them out.

The Bearded Boar
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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Camera Mount Give Away!

  10/25/11***I am going to add a to the mix a foldible compact mount so those who don't have a bow can use it with their SLR or pocket cam.****

 I have been asked by people how I get so many camera angles with my cameras from my bow.  Well, I will unveil the secrets up my filming.  I make my own camera mounts.  Simple fact is I do not like buying anything that I can make.  My Handcrafted Gear Pages shows that.  I have three basic camera mounts and I will give away to Two lucky people.  I have the Riser Mount that will attach to most bows and is great for forward and rear facing shots and a stabilizer mount that does it all.  Here is the bowfishing set up where is mounts to the sight holes.  It can also be mounted just below the riser for your big game rig in you would like. (Available in GOPRO or Contour widths)

The other is the Stabilizer Mount that attached between your bow any standard stabilizer.  This one I love, you can rotate it to so many different angles to get all sorts of shots a standard mount just will not give you. It comes in an optional fixed our swiveled style head.

To Qualify

  Okay kids it is simple, for every comment on this blog post, you will get 1 entry.  If you follow me on Twitter you get 1 entry, leave a comment on this blog post saying you did so. For every Retweet of a Twitter post you will get 1 entry, leave separate comment on this blog post saying you did so.  If you follow the Bearded Boar blog you get 1 entry, leave a separate comment on this blog post saying you did so. A comment on other social media sites such as Facebook or Huntvids will be give 1 point as well, make sure you leave a separate comment on this blog post. If you already, follow on any above sites 1 entry, but still leave a comment saying so  Please leave separate comments for each entry! 1 Comment = 1 Entry!

The Deadline

  The give away will start time is 930 am PST 10/18/11 and the contest will close 5pm PST 10/27/11.  During this time entries will be considered valid.

The Winner and Prize Acceptance

  The winner will be announced Friday October 28th via email and post on the Bearded Boar site as well as Facebook and Twitter.  The winner must respond within 48 hours of the announcement, if contact is not made then another winner will be chosen via the same method as the first.  Winner must respond with their contact information for the prize delivery or they will forfeit their prize.

Good luck all and have at it.

The Bearded Boar

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Monday, October 17, 2011

Waiting on a Pig.... Part 2

  So day two was not much better in terms of success, but what is lacked in meat on the ground it was assurance that my spot and stalk and planning skills were up to par.  The night before I had met a gentleman in the campground who had only seen one doe and because I have become the "Doe Whisperer" I told him to come with me and we'll make it happen for him and I hopefully.

  The set up was great, a open field where deer and pigs are feeding, their beds where they take the mid morning siestas, and us in between the two.  As we walked in I realized that I did not judge the walk in properly, and I paid for it.  I must have missed a large pig by 5 to 10 minutes by the smell of him.  As I realized the sun was starting to come up I broke out into a good trot to try and get to my pinch point.  The day before I have found a hole in the fence of the "Spray Field" that the deer, elk and pigs use to easily move back and forth.  As I stopped to glass the field I was relieved to still see a few pigs in the field, but they were headed out of the field right where I should have been.  And further more, one was staring me down.

  I thought I was far enough into the trees and up the hill so that they could not see me, but I guess I was wrong.  I think what busted me was the wind that was starting to swirl, which ended up being the bane of my existence the rest of the day. He say me, I saw him we both booked it towards where I thought we would meet. Except his 80lbsish frame was slightly faster than mine and he lived to fight another day.  I did meet up with another hunter that was up the hill a ways and he did say that about 5 pigs ran by him in a hurry that morning. So well morning sit was over before it started.  It was another day of learning for me.

  The rest of the day was a mix of stalking deer and elk, but no pigs.  I got within 50yrds of two bull 5x5 elk and a 5x6 bull.  To this day nothing gets my heart racing like an elk.  I have been in bow range of a lot of animals, but it is elk that move and shake me.  Bears or Pigs are a close second though.  I was able to get 15 yards of two doe about lunch time by stalking and playing the wind.  Those ladies near knew I was there or they knew that I wasn't able to shoot them either.  Man I hate being an ethical and honest hunter sometimes, okay I don't I actually love it.

  I walked and walked and walked and when I was done with that I walked some more. I finally decided to do the whitetail thing and just set my self for a spell.  I looked at the lay of the land, found some natural areas where I thought the pigs would enter the field from and there I stayed.  Not much action for a few hours, I did see a guy put a failed stalk on a few deer.  He shot three times and missed three times  Poor guy, I think he lost all his arrows too.  Not the best way to end a hunt, humbled by missing and by not having anymore arrows to shoot.  Funniest thing is that when the deer eventually bumped they come over towards me and I was able to get within bow range of them too.

  So I was in the "Kill Zone" aka 5pm to 730pm, in my spot, camo'd up, nocked up, ready to rock.  When I hear him.  Quiet at first, but I picked up faint sound in the tall grass.  A squirrel in the distance alerted me to him.  And as I positioned myself to shoot, my Bobby the cat peeks his head out.  Man oh man.  Here I am, I'll take that shot, but then I remember I did not buy my bobcat tags this year.  Once again, just one step shy of sealing the deal, but hey it was a beautiful day and a awesome trip.  I am sure the next time I go there hunting deer and elk, all I will see is pigs and be just as frustrated.  Good times and great weekend.

Hope you all enjoyed.

The Bearded Boar

PS.  I have a gear review coming up this week so get ready.
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Thursday, October 13, 2011

Waiting on a Pig.... Part 1

  So my weekend started out a little early last week, Friday morning to be exact and with my truck loaded with all the essentials pig sticking supplies I headed north to Forth Hunter Ligget in Paso Robles, CA.  I was a pretty uneventful drive, except for the guy that I met in a gun shop that said he hunts Grizzly Bears in Central ya how's that straight jacket fitting?  Parents still give you coloring books for Christmas?  So after the Funny Farm experience I jumped in my truck and arrived at the base.

 I checked in, gave them my registration form and proceeded to pic a place that I was not planning on hunting, but they said the pigs have been moving in the area.  So, I bit and changed all my plans and headed to town to try and get an internet connection and "scout" the area.  So, my Grande black coffee and I finally settled on a guzzle that had, at least on google, a lot of game trails that lead by it.  Plan intact I headed back to my camp site for Cajun Chicken sandwiches and a Stout.  Then rest.

  Morning came and I was the first one out into the field heading out to my spot.  I arrived at early enough, or so I though.  Still dark I walked down into my little valley and took up a vantage point, problem is that it was too high and too exposed.  I was not even sitting down when "He" strolled up the valley.  When I say he I mean a 250 to 300+lb boar who was now 130 yards below me and I am out in the open.  As he turns to walk up a saddle I tried to slowly get ahead of him and seal the deal.  No such luck, he is big and old for a reason.  I got busted and he exited stage left in a hurry.  No go for that morning hunt.

 I did move down to a better set up where my large and incharge friend was headed too.  After about 10 minutes I did have 6 does and 2 bucks roll through at 30 yards, but alas I did not have a tag for that area.  over the next 5 hours I had road hunter after road hunter drive down the road and try and jump a deer.  With no and highly pitiful results.  Side note here, I despise road hunting.  It is the underbelly of hunting if you can call sitting on your backside while you cover mile after mile of graded roads in pursuit of their targets. But this subject is for another post, the hunt is at hand.

  I did see anymore pigs that morning or afternoon so I left and switched zones to an archery only, no vehicle area.  Tranquility and peace rained through my soul.  So the evening set went well, I jumped deer after deer after deer, it was so frustrating to be spot n' stalking deer to within 15 yards and not being able to shoot.  But it was good experience for me for sure a big moral buster in may ways, I still had the skills to pay the bills.  Good thing is there were pigs sign everywhere.  Rooted up earth under every tree and the pungent smell of pig where ever I went.  That afternoon I probably hiked 6 miles that afternoon before I hit my set for the evening.  A good day a restful day, a "Man I was so close" day, but good all the same.

Well pictures are nice, but I prefer video to tell the story so here you all go.

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Top ten things to do in a stand or blind...

 So this weekend I was sitting in my ground blind and waiting for pigs to come into the water hole for hours and hours.  I started to think about the things I had been doing all day while I was waiting and about the things other people do while waiting for game.  Here is a the top ten list.

1. Glass the area counting every blade of grass and fallen leaf.

2. Text everyone you know about the conditions in the field hoping they respond.

3. Range every pebble and blade of grass around you.

4. Update your Facebook, Twitter, Blog and or Google+ account with more random info.

5. Check and double check the wind direction.

6. Wish death and destruction on every squirrel within a two mile radius.

7. Text your buddy who is sitting in a stand down the road to see if he has seen anything.

8. Move to a new stand or blind because the wind has shifted again.

9. Contemplate the meaning of life for the fifty time that day.

10. Re-apply sent blocking spray for the 200th time in an hour.

These are a few of my favorites, what are yours?
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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

And now for something completely different....

  Many people have seen my video "The Canal" about bowfishing in Ventura County, CA.  It is not your typical sit down outdoor hunting type program and that to me is a good thing.  Many hunting shows today have the same footage, same B roll cut ins and same stand in front of a big tree and tell you about the kill footage and they have their place on television.  But when did hunting footage split from main stream culture and loose the ability to stir in visual appealing footage with a moving story of the pursuit of game.  That is what I am trying to do, move emotion within someone no matter what the content.

  Almost every hunt is a momentous event that should be conveyed in such a way that moves us and unveils a the primal scream that come from deep within our souls.  But given the current state of 95% of outdoor programming, I am left lacking most of the time. I long for a story line that moves me and keeps me interested for more than 5 minutes.  Not a, "here is my gear, my sponsors, my leased land, the shot, and then the inevitable standing over the kill with a smile".  Why don't you see the blood on the hands, the dirt covered faces and the bruised shins from tree stumps?  Dare I say the hunt has become too soft and sanitized?  Not the hunt itself mind you, I know the hunts can be hard, but the footage has become so executivized, pretty and family wholesome programming.  Really?  My 6 year old knows what a how to gut and skin a Rattle Snake and Cotton Tail, blood will not give him nightmares. 

   Come on lets show some true grit!  We are not Prius driving, nonfat-sugar free-latte drinking pansies, we are Outdoor Warriors! Athletes who scale mountains and traverse swaps for our prize!  Lets show our passions on our sleeves!  If we want to show other non hunters who we truly are we also need to change their perception of the backwoods, banjo playing, two toothed rednecks that we are not.  We are educated rednecks, most of us have degrees and full time jobs that are the fabric of our society.  We need to depict our lives beyond the camo and show that we are more than savages.  We have families, kids, we cook, love and are passionate about preserving the outdoors which we live in.  Lets bring our lives to the masses not just our hunts.  We need to film the hunting lifestyle and legacy, not just the hunt.

  So all this being said, I have been given the privilege to know some men who are trying to bring the cinematography that most of us crave, but did not have a voice to say we desired.  Take a look at Project: Dominion which will air in 2012 on The Sportsman's Channel.  It is a mixed bag of guys, MMA Fighter, School Teacher and well I am not sure what Peter King does anymore but he is a really cool guy all the same.

The Teaser-

Project Dominion

Here is their Facebook page too-

Project Dominion- Facebook

  What I am stoked also about it that I am slated to shoot an episode with them doing some bowfishing.  Death From Above!  Good times.

Check it out, you will not be disappointed.

The Bearded Boar
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Monday, October 3, 2011

Too many bears to deer hunt

  So I went out to my local prime hunting spot to try and shoot myself a nice Buck before pee shooting opens. So I geared up, and headed out solo. As I got to the mouth of the canyon I found lots of good fresh deer tracks and bear. Good stuff, was excited about shooting a bear, later this month. So me, myself and I thought it through and we would just be on the lookout for a few Yogis rolling down the trail.  No worries we've done this may times before.

  First let me say, I've had many run ins with bears, I spent a summer working at a camp in the Sequoias National Park and actively chased them around the camp and out of the trash bins. I have backpacked all over the East and West Sierras and had many encounters with no problems, but this time it felt different. The canyon I hunt in is one way in one way out, the trail I am on is it. Too thick and steep to try and run up and get away. So needless to say I was a little apprehensive, especially when I got to where my first set was. I think Gellystone was having a picnic basket convention and all of Yogi's kin came to visit.

  No joke at least three or four bears had been through there recently, especially the sow and here cub. The tracks were clean, defined and the sides were just starting to caving in, aka she just came through. Okay so I stopped looked, listened and nothing. Heart is pumping like the base line at a Puffy concert now, not sure who is hunting who. Wind started swirling and was most likely giving every deer in the area my current AO and with that I headed out to the mouth of the canyon where I had another set I could do.  I about faced and walked back out the same way I had come in and well wouldn't you know Yogi had decided to wait for me to pass earlier and walked back down the trail.  Let me tell ya it is strange to see bear tracks over the top of your own that you had made not 15 minutes before. Okay enough carnivore fun for one day I double timed it back to my last set and called it a day. All, I can say is that I am excited that Bear to open, but I need the right set to make it happen. Not a small choked canyon where I am all alone and no one knows were I'm at.

So to all the bears out there reading this, I'll get you Yogi and you little Booboo to.

The Bearded Boar
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