Archive for Around the Campfire

Oct
13

Guns and Accessories for Sale

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Oct
09

Groaning by Randy Rowley 10/09/18 ©

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Over many years of deer and hog hunting I’ve heard a lot of sounds – soft, barely audible sounds, loud frightening sounds, crashes, growls, howls, shrieks, and cries of agony.  But I never heard a buck grunt in person until a hot Saturday afternoon deer hunt in early October.

As I driving towards a property that I hunt near the west side of Round Rock, I was greeted by a doe that ran in front of my truck and then down towards the creek.  She was soon followed by a young 8-point buck in hot pursuit. Read More→

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In late March, David Chalmers, Warren Hoke and I headed to the El Portillo Ranch near Charlotte for a weekend of hog hunting.  When we arrived we were met by the outfitter, who took our money and then showed us around the ranch.

Later that afternoon I took David and Warren to their chosen stands and then headed for mine.  As I was driving down the dirt road I saw what I thought was a stick standing straight up about 50 yards ahead.  I was a little perplexed, as I didn’t remember the stick being there during our tour. Read More→

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It was a warm Saturday morning on Lake Decker, but that was the norm for early June.  My son (Ryan), his future wife (Claire), and I headed over to the hot water discharge.  I’d caught bass there on a couple trips in the late spring and thought that it would be a good place to start.

I went halfway up the discharge, shut down the main motor, and started the trolling motor.  After the wake from Bob (my boat at the time) had dissipated we saw several tiny splashes on the surface of the water.  It looked like rain, but we knew it wasn’t as we weren’t getting wet.  It took a few seconds to figure it out due to the darkness – the little splashes were caused by small minnows hitting bugs on the surface.

With great anticipation, I cast a Heddon Zara Spook Jr. to the far bank.  I walked it back to me, bracing for the strike that would surely happen, but it never came.  Ryan and Claire also threw topwater plugs with the same results.  We chunked topwaters for a good 15 minutes and had nothing to show for it.  We all eventually gave up on topwaters.  Ryan and I started to throw lipless crankbaits, while Claire covered her head with a seat cushion to escape the rain that has started to come down. Read More→

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Sep
18

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This web page is solely a service provided by the Fellowship of Christian Sportsmen (FCS). This service does not constitute or imply FCS’ association, endorsement or recommendation of any of the following listings.

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Sep
18

Fallow Deer (Buck) Hunt

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Charles Batts’ friend, Richard, has a good Fallow deer buck for someone to hunt.  The hunter will stay in a house.  Simple food will be provided.  Charles will probably guide the hunter.  They can also replace the Fallow buck with a giant Sika buck.  The ranch is near Mason.  Charles will furnish a picture off of a game camera to interested parties.  The price is $1100.  Contact Charles Batts at charlesbatts@cbhardware.com or 512-750-2225 for more information.

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Sep
17

Deer Day Bow Hunts for Sale

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Ricky Ethridge (one of our long-standing duck guides) is offering a limited number of bow hunts in October, 2018 on his land near Marquez.  The price is $750 for a buck (mature bucks only) and doe.  Contact Randy Rowley for Ricky’s number at (512) 922-2484. Read More→

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My second motor boat was a 1989 18’ 4” Champion 184 bass boat with a 150 HP Mercury motor that I named Champ.

Champ proved to be a good bass boat.  I could cruise at 50 MPH with two guys in the boat and 48 MPH with three.  But Champ has his limitations.  For duck hunting he was just a transport vessel, due to his mostly white hull.  As he wasn’t camo, I couldn’t hunt out of him like I could from Bob, my previous camo boat.  We’d go to where we were going to hunt, unload our gear, move him 75 or so yards away and cover him with a camo tarp. Read More→

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Aug
20

New Cabelas Bird belt for sale

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Binh Chu has a new Cabela’s bird (dove/upland bird) belt for sale, size medium.  He paid $30.  Asking price is $20.  Contact Binh at binh_chu@yahoo.com or 512-537-4758. Read More→

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Aug
01

Thwarted! by Randy Rowley 8/1/18 ©

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It was with considerable anticipation that Roy Brigman and I boarded Dannie Golden’s boat on Lake Ray Roberts on August the 15th for a morning of bass fishing.  Dannie is the owner of Get Bit Guide Service and has a great reputation.  We were booked to fish with Dannie on March the 9th but postponed out trip due to a high chance of projected thunderstorms.  Two days before our trip was to have happened one of Dannie’s clients caught a 15.18 lb. bass, setting a new lake record.  Roy and I were hoping to get into some big bass. Read More→

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Jun
25

Hardcastles – Germany 2018

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Hello.

I wanted to share upcoming trip Sabrina and I are taking and ask for your support.  We are excited to share our hearts and God’s calling in this request.  We want to ask for PARTNERS to make this summer’s trip to serve in the Frankfurt outreach to the refugees successful on every level.  We know that God has called some to GO, and some to SEND and PRAY.  We are willing to Go.
Please reference the attached PDF guide.  There is lots of information linked to this guide, should you be interested to follow the links and watch/ read.  I would love to share in person, but for those remote I think email is our only option at this point in the game.  Please let me know if you would like to schedule a face to face or call.

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Jun
12

Hunting Safety at Home and Beyond

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Jun
04

PSE Compound Bow for sale

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May
28

2002 Black Chevy Impala For Sale

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See https://thefederalist.com/2018/05/03/springfield-armory-severs-ties-dicks-sporting-goods-gun-control-lobbying/.

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Apr
23

Yeti and the 2nd Amendment

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Yeti Coolers has severed ties with the NRA Foundation and dropped its sponsorship of Friends of the NRA banquets around the country.  Many pro-2nd Amendment groups consider Yeti giving the Bird to hunters.  See http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2018/04/daniel-zimmerman/yeti-coolers-drops-nra-affiliation-rtic-coolers-steps-right-in/.

However, Yeti has a different take on how this went down.  See http://www.foxnews.com/us/2018/04/24/yeti-calls-nra-claims-inaccurate-says-it-has-unwavering-belief-in-second-amendment.html.

This may be, as Cool Hand Luke famously stated, a failure to communicate.  At the very least, with several businesses pulling the plug on the NRA, it is bad timing on Yeti’s part.

 

 

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On a chilly Saturday morning in April, Roland Olivarez and I found that we had Lake Pflugerville to ourselves for our bass fishing trip.  But, it wasn’t the cold that was keeping other fishermen, who are usually kayakers, away; it was undoubtedly the projected 15 – 25 MPH winds with gusts up to 30.

Motor boats are allowed on the lake, but are only allowed to use their trolling motors.  As I had sold my gas motor for parts a few weeks before this trip after a piston went bad, a trolling motor was all that I had.  I had bought a new 12-volt deep cycle battery shortly before this trip and had hooked it up to a sister battery to power the trolling motor.  I felt confident that my boat was up to the task of handling the projected winds. Read More→

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This is a website that shows the depths of most fishing spots.  It loads fast and they have a mobile app.  See http://www.gpsnauticalcharts.com/main/us/us_tx_fishing_maps-texas-fishing-maps-fishing-maps-folio.html.  Note: Click “i-Boating” instead of “i-boating US”, as the latter’s link is broken.

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Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission Approves Changes to Fishing Regulations for 2018-19 Read More→

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On a hot and partly cloudy Monday in June, five fishermen hopped in guide Jay Garrett’s boat on Lake Belton for an afternoon of hybrid bass catching.  After several years of these annual trips I started called them catching trips instead of fishing trips, as we usually engaged in the former.

We ran across to the dam side of the lake and slipped into a cove.  We knew that Jay had found the right spot, as we soon spotted a large school of shad right by the bank.

Jay anchored his boat near the shad, baited a hook with a live shad that he had previously caught, and handed me the rod.  I went and set it as per his instructions – release the bail and pull the mono fishing line from the reel to the first rod guide six times.  As I went to get another rod from Jay, I heard an unmistakable sound – Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!  A fish had hit the first shad!  My wife (Chris Rowley) promptly grabbed the rod and started fighting the fish. Read More→

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On an overcast but mild Monday in February, two friends, Jim McGee and Roland Oliverez, and I descended on Lake Decker, just east of Austin, for a morning of bass fishing in Champ, my boat. The weather forecast called for 10 – 20 MPH south winds, but when we got there it was calm, so I decided to head along the NE bank using my foot-controlled trolling motor. A piston in the gasoline motor on my boat had stopped working the previous July and, rather than rebuild a 21-year old engine, I sold it for parts. That left the trolling motor and two paddles as our means of propulsion.

Two hours later, and having thrown every type of bait we could think of without success, we decided to head back the way that we had come. The south wind had picked up and we were headed right into it. So I turned my trolling motor up to half power. As we progressed, the wind became stronger, causing me to continue to increase power to the trolling motor. Read More→

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Feb
07

Samson Society Men’s Group

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Do you have a group of men you can be ‘rot gut honest‘ about your struggles and needs?  All men are fighting against sin in their lives, and many are losing because they don’t have “Traveling Partners” to share the journey, gain encouragement, and biblical support.  Samson Society is a men’s group that supports men in their Christian discipleship and fight against sin, such as isolation, depression, anger, marital issues, sexual temptations and failures, substance abuse, online gaming, and more.  There are two Samson groups in Austin.  One meets at FM 620 & FM 2222 on Thursday nights and the other meets at Wells Branch (North Austin/RR) on Tuesday nights.  If you want to learn more, call FCS member, Mike Hardcastle at 512-423-8710 or visit their website at:  https://sites.google.com/site/samsonnorthaustin/home.

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Jan
30

Patched by Randy Rowley 1/30/18 ©

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When we were getting ready to leave for our early January self-guided/chartered coastal Blast and Cast (duck hunt and bay fishing trip) at Port O’Connor, Daryl Shipper asked me if he could borrow my spare pair of waders, which were made from neoprene.  Daryl had a pair of waders with him, but they weren’t made of neoprene and he knew that the water would probably be cold, due to recent cold fronts.  I said “sure” and we threw them in my truck with the rest of our stuff.  I wasn’t concerned about them because they had worked fine the last time that I had used them.  But that was about a year prior to this trip. Read More→

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Dec
31

1/1/18 State of the Club Report

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As every sportsman and shooter knows, hunting, fishing and shooting can be hazardous to our health. Almost all of us have experienced scratches, cuts, scrapes, punctures, bruises and burns while participating in our favorite pastimes. Fortunately, fewer of us have broken bones or experienced other injuries that required ER visits while doing what we love. And even fewer of us have almost met our maker while pursuing our passions. Perhaps it’s because I hunt, fish and shoot more often than most sportsmen do or perhaps I’m just in the wrong place at the wrong time, but I’ve experienced what could have resulted in serious injuries or death on more than my fair share of occasions. Read More→

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On a weekend in mid-March my middle daughter Robin and I went on a hog hunt with about eight other hunters on the Pierce Ranch near El Campo. On the first afternoon, the guide put Robin and me in a box blind for two. The blind was about 100 yards from a feeder. We didn’t see any hogs on that first hunt, but were instead treated to a display that neither of us would ever forget. Read More→

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Jul
07

Dominance by Randy Rowley 7/7/17 ©

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It was a cold and sunny December afternoon for a meat deer hunt on the Hymeadow Ranch near Lampasas. Robin, my middle daughter, and I lay on our bellies on the edge of a 9-acre field. We decided not to hunt the natural blind, as the feeder was about 300 yards east of it. Instead, we hunted south of the feeder, which put us 100 yards closer to the feeder.

Within a few minutes a couple does came out, but I had already killed two antlerless deer (a doe and a button buck), so I passed on them hoping that I’d get a shot at a decent spike. Read More→

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It was a crisp and clear Saturday in early May, a perfect day to go bass fishing. My son, Ryan, my grandson, Hunter, and I launched at Mansfield Dam on Lake Travis and headed to Commodore’s Point Cove on the northwest side of the boat launch. We arrived at the northward point and I shut Champ, my boat, off and engaged the trolling motor.

About the 15th cast with my Whopper Plopper (a hard body top water propeller bait) I hooked a bass and quickly brought him in. He didn’t put up much of a fight, as he was only around 12 inches. After another 15 or so casts with no hits, I switched to a square bill crankbait. I tried slow retrieves, medium retrieves, fast retrieves, and stop and go retrieves, all to no avail. Then I tried a lipless crankbait, then a spinnerbait, then a deep-diving crankbait, then a jointed swimbait, then a Roadrunner, then a creature bait, and finally a worm. All generated the same amount on non-interest. Read More→

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May
08

Feral Monkeys Near Dilley, Texas

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See http://blog.wildlifejournalist.com/2017/05/feral-monkeys-in-texas-photo-and-more/.

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Apr
12

The Trials of Fishing

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See https://www.youtube.com/embed/tSiAnJBGc7w?wmode=transparent&fs=1&hl=en&modestbranding=1&iv_load_policy=3&showsearch=0&rel=0&theme=dark&hd=1&blocked=true.

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See http://saladovillagevoice.com/mountain-lion-kill-spotted-downtown-salado/.

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Usually when my friends and I hunt ducks down at the Texas coast we hunt in the marsh between Corpus Christi and Port Aransas, off Wilson’s Cut.  The area is the wintering grounds for 80% of the one million redhead North American population.  Pintail, widgeon, scaup (blue bill), and a few other species also call it home.  Redheads are easy to decoy and are not picky about what your spread looks like.  It is not uncommon for redheads to land among our decoys as we set them out in the afternoon or pick them up after a morning hunt. Read More→

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Feb
13

Help! by Randy Rowley 2/10/17 ©

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For central Texas in early December, it was cold.  The thermometer in Ryan’s (my son) truck said 31 degrees, which made this duck hunt the first sub-freezing hunt of the season.  We launched at Friendship Park on Granger Lake at dark thirty and proceeded west to the Sore Finger Wildlife Management Area and our usual cove.

Unbeknownst to us, our frequent hunting partner, Mr. Murphy, joined us yet again.  Ken Miller started the fun by losing his balance while setting out decoys and falling into the water up to his neck.  He crammed the butt stock of his unloaded shotgun into the muddy bottom and got up quickly – so quickly in fact that the rest of us didn’t know that he had gone down.  Some water went down the front of his neckline and up his left sleeve, but not much. Read More→

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Jan
31

Access to a Creek

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The State of Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife sent a letter to a home/landowner asking for permission to access a creek on his property to document the decline in a certain species of unheard of frogs. 

The property owners’ response in the second letter is EPIC.

Original Letter from Oregon Dept. of Fish & Wildlife: Read More→

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Event Attendance Comparison Read More→

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Why not to go duck hunting or fishing when high winds are expected – http://www.click2houston.com/news/coast-guard-searching-for-3-missing-houston-area-hunters-near-corpus-christi-bay

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Jan
01

1/1/17 State of the Club Report

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2016 was a fair to good year for the club. Highlights include: Read More→

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We decided to post this story on the FCS website as a warning to our group concerning the potential dangers to hunters and fishermen of wearing waders without a life jacket or wading belt.
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Nov
14

Steel vs. Lead Shot by Randy Rowley

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A few years ago I went on a dove hunt at the Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge.  One of their rules was that you had to hunt with non-lead shot.  I bought three boxes of 12 gauge steel dove shot (7 shot) but we didn’t see or shoot at many dove that day. Read More→

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On a Monday morning in early September, Rex Yokum and I met at the Decker Lake boat ramp. After we launched, we slowly proceeded to the north arm of the lake. Our crawling speed wasn’t due to the darkness. No, it was due to a far worse enemy – heavy fog! Fortunately, Champ’s (my boat) GPS was working just fine and we were soon fishing the point across from the dam.

In no time, Rex had a strong hit on a worm, but missed the fish. Then it became the fishing equivalent of silence. There were no splashes on top and I didn’t get even a bump on my dog walker or frog. Rex also didn’t generate any interest for his Whopper Plopper. Read More→

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Aug
07

Hide by Randy Rowley 8/7/16 ©

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On a bright and sunny day in March, eight hunters and four spectators converged at the Schumann Brothers Outdoors property near Dimebox for a quail, chukar, and pheasant hunt.  The group that I hunted with opted to go after pheasants first.  We drove to the field and waited for a few minutes while the guide positioned the birds.

The cover was a mixture of open country and thick mesquites, oaks, cedars, and scrub brush.  In less than five minutes, we had two birds in the bag.  The dog, a brittany spaniel named Buddy ran through the scrub brush and into an open area that had a few clumps of high grass the size of basketballs.  I thought to myself, “There can’t be any birds there!”  Then all of a sudden, he came to point. Read More→

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On 3/15/16, I read an article in the online version of Field & Stream (F&S) called How I Became a Gun Owner, by Tom McHale.  The author was neutral on gun issues until the unthinkable happened – early one Saturday morning his business partner was shot 11 times for no reason at all by two punks and left for dead.  Now Mr. McHale is a fierce advocate of gun rights and a shooting expert.  The article was as harrowing as it was well written. Read More→

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Feb
21

Wild Game Processing

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Kevin Wall recommends Smokey Denmark’s.  The owner attends Hyde Park Baptist Church.  He processes hogs, as well as javelina, deer, and exoits.  Only Hudson’s and him process hogs in the Austin area.  Your game must be quartered and on ice.

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Feb
21

Gun Selling Service

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Randy Rowley offers a service to sell guns on gunbroker.  He’ll take pictures of the gun, create the ad, and post it.  After it sells he’ll package it and ship it to the buyers FFL dealer.  He charges 10% of the selling price for this service.  This fee does not include gunbroker ad fees, packaging costs, and mailing costs.  He has sold a $2,500 shotgun and a $350 rifle (for two separate customers) successfully on gunbroker.

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Bible verse of the day

Believers in humble circumstances ought to take pride in their high position. But the rich should take pride in their humiliation—since they will pass away like a wild flower.

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