Archives for July 2014

Why I stopped carrying a traditional hunting knife

Havalon PirantaI’ve carried the same hunting knife every deer season ever since I was 6 years old.  It was a gift from my grandfather.  He bought it for me when I was an infant and I’ve carried it dutifully every fall since I was 6…until 3 years ago.

I was deer hunting in northern Missouri and killed a great buck the first evening of the hunt.  The following morning when I went to cape the buck out, my buddy Shane tossed me this weird folding knife with an orange handle.  “Use mine,” he said.  “You can repay me by caping my deer.”

The knife he tossed me was a Havalon Piranta and 30 minutes later, I was a firm believer.  It’s a simple plastic handled folder that accepts scalpel blades.  I made short work of caping that deer and later in the week, I repaid my debt by caping Shane’s 160 inch 10 point.

I don’t get too excited about hunting gear.  I’m the eternal skeptic when it comes to hunting products but this thing is the real deal. It comes with 12  of the 60xt blades which are 2.75 inches long.  It will accept other sizes but I’ve found the 60xt perfect for field dressing, skinning, and caping the head so there’s no need for swapping sizes.  It’s most useful for caping heads and doing the delicate work around the eyes, nose, and lips.  It also makes zipping around the antler burr pretty easy.

The Havalon makes up all the shortcomings a traditional knife has.  You never have to deal with a dull knife.  When it does get dull, you simply snap off the blade and get another.  And unlike my old standby knife, there is no sentimental attachment to it.  If I lost it, I’d just buy another.  It’s also orange so losing it in the fall leaves is pretty difficult.

There are some drawbacks, however.  After a lifetime of using a knife that I thought was sharp, using a scalpel blade took some getting used to.  It makes a traditional knife, no matter how sharp, look dull.  Over the years, you get used to being sloppy without consequence, but with the Havalon, one slip can spell a trip to the E.R. for stitches.  You learn fast to keep this thing away from what you don’t want cut like fingers and deer stomachs.  Two years of heavy use later, mine is still going strong and I couldn’t imagine life before it.  Get yours here.


Texas Tech Cheerleader draws ire of Anti-Hunters

Kendall Jones, a 19-year-old Texas Tech Cheerleader has drawn fire form the anti-hunting community for posting pictures on Facebook of some African animals she recently killed on safari.

Via Kendall Jone's Facebook Page

Via Kendall Jones’ Facebook Page

What isn’t shocking is the backlash.  She’s an attractive girl that cheers for a Big 12 school.  It’s somewhat unusual someone like her would post photos of an African hunting trip.  It’s the type of thing that begs for media attention.  A lot of people simply don’t have a favorable view of hunting especially when African animals are concerned so it stands to reason when something like this happens, the media will blow it up and the anti-hunters will come out of the woodwork.

What is surprising is the outpouring of hate toward this girl.  And I mean hate.  I understand disagreeing with someone’s position but a lot of these people have taken it pretty far.  People have an uncanny ability to be great shit talkers behind a keyboard but just a quick glance at the comments on her Facebook photos shows more than just shit talk.  “They should give you the death penalty,” one commenter writes.  “I’d like to leave you in the wild and hunt you.  That’s fair,” writes another.   The striking thing is this isn’t just another case of internet trolling where you screw with someone while hiding behind a pseudonym.  This is on Facebook where these people aren’t anonymous.  They’re passionate enough about their positions to put their names on them.  Scary.

This whole debacle illustrates how ignorant a lot of anti-hunters are.  If you look through these negative comments, there are several consistencies.  The first being their arguments are emotionally driven and largely whiny bullshit.  They feel this way because it feels good to them.  In their heads, life is a Disney movie.   Secondly, most comments are devoid of fact.  I couldn’t count the number of comments that accused her of hunting endangered species.  I even heard a news anchor say the same thing this morning.  None of the animals she posted photos of were endangered, but to most uninformed people, African game = endangered.  But whatever, most people in this country couldn’t tell you which party controls the House or the Senate so this shouldn’t come as a surprise.  Americans are dumb and this is just another instance where they get to prove it.

The one who gets the last laugh in this would have to be Kendall Jones though.  She is filming for a hunting show on the Sportsman Channel for the 2015 season and from the looks of it, is getting the buzz going early. The people who wish her ill will wouldn’t watch the show anyway and their chest beating will attract people who will.  There’s no such thing as bad press so cheers to you, Kendall.  Go to her Facebook page and give it a like.



Death of a trail camera

It was bound to happen.  After having a trail camera out for a few weeks, I’ve gotten quite a few pictures of some nice bucks and unfortunately, some nice bears.  All the bear pics have been at a pretty good distance with them showing no interest in the camera.   Until last night.  Today after work, I went to retrieve a my memory card and as I approached the tree where the camera had been, I initially thought it had been stolen.  Upon further inspection, I saw a circuit board, then a battery, then the carcass of the trail cam.  I assume he heard the shutter click and doing what bears do, tore it off and chewed it apart.  Or my Smokey Bear post from the other day pissed him off and he was getting even.  Looks like I’ll be getting a bear box for the next camera.  I was lucky enough to find the memory card so here’s a pic of the young vandal right before the crime was committed.

Pa Bear