• OUTDOOR TALES: Program teaches women outdoor skills

    Many outdoor sports, including archery, hunting, fishing, and others, were considered “guy” sports. However, today, more and more women are getting involved.

    The female participation comes from a variety of reasons and they are as varied as the ladies and range from wanting to be active with their spouses to single moms wanting to involve their children, to those who just want to enjoy the great outdoors.

  • STRAIGHT ARROW: More equipment checks

    First, last week I had a misprint that I want to correct. When checking your arrows, look closely at the intact nocks, checking for any cracks which could shatter when shot, resulting in a dry fire. If you find a damaged nock, make sure the arrow shaft is not damaged then replace the nock.

    Another thing to check before hunting season arrives is your string loop. If there is any sign of wear or damage, replace it.

  • OUTDOOR TALES: Outlook bright for duck hunters

    Duck hunters can anticipate plenty of birds to hunt this fall and winter, assuming the weather continues to cooperate.

    North America’s spring duck population is down slightly from record levels, but pond counts are up 24 percent over last year, according to the 2013 Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat. 

    The survey, which has been conducted annually since 1955 by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Canadian Wildlife service, puts the breeding duck population at 45.6 million, the second-highest level ever recorded. 

  • STRAIGHT ARROW: Archers should check their equipment

    With the opening of the archery deer season only 44 days away, if you haven’t been practicing it’s time to start, but first do an inspection of your bow and arrows.

  • STRAIGHT ARROW: Highway 30

    If you have never had the chance to wander around the mountains of eastern Kentucky and ever thought about making the trip, let me recommend a drive across Kentucky Highway 30. I recently had to make a delivery at Salyersville then make my way over to Kentucky Highway 15 and make my next stop southeast of Jackson near Hazard.

    After checking our maps, David and I decided the best most efficient route would be to take the Mountain Parkway to Salyersville, make my delivery, backtrack about three miles to Ky. 30 at exit 72 and head southwest to Ky. 15.

  • OUTDOOR TALES: Bluegill a favorite of many

    Picking a favorite fish is easy for many people. It’s a largemouth bass. Others would ask, “Do you mean to catch or eat?”

    For most people in the Midwest, the answer would be “bluegill.”

    Bluegill are regionally known as bream (Southeast), brim, sun perch, blue sunfish and copper belly. There also are many popular ”sunfish cousins” such as redear and stumpknockers. 

    They are plentiful, fun to catch, and very good eating.

  • STRAIGHT ARROW: Rainy day outings

    If you are like me, all the rain on the 4th of July kind of put a dampener on our plans to go hiking. While we could have worn our rain gear and gone anyway, it would have been miserable so we looked for an option.

  • OUTDOOR TALES: Big weed, yes; flower, no

    It’s a large, tall rapidly growing plant that appeared in the small flower garden plot on the west side of my deck. It grew with jack-in-the-beanstalk rapidity.

    Wife Phyllis and I stayed longer in Florida this spring due to a series of leg surgeries she had scheduled. When we returned home our wonderful neighbors, Scott and Sherry Wahl, plus daughter Shayna, had already cleaned out our flowerbeds.

    (Nice to help out the old folks.)

    Scott and Sherry encouraged me to leave this plant in the flowerbed and thought it was a flower.

  • STRAIGHT ARROW: Millennium Trail

    If you don’t know about or haven’t hiked the Millennium Trail at nearby Bernheim Forest, you are missing out on the best long trail in our area.

    The Millennium Trail is a 13.7-mile loop trail that will challenge anyone. While I would not rate it as difficult terrain, there are seven ridges that you will climb and descend that will wear you out. Add in the distance and the heat this time of year and you have a trail that will definitely test your stamina and determination.

  • OUTDOOR TALES: Catalpa worms ugly, but catfish love 'em

    Catalpa trees, with their large, white blooms, have been beautiful this spring.

    When the catalpa blooms, I always think of the old tree near my boyhood home in Illinois. I spent a lot of time climbing in the tree.

    While the tree was a place for me to play, my dad took a strong interest in the tree for another reason. Later, we shared the interest.

    Catalpa trees have beautiful blossoms that look a bit like an orchid, and the wood of the tree makes very good fence posts. But, there also is another benefit.