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B zone buck hunting

Article and photo by Casey Allen
9/21/11 -- The opening weekend of deer season in Northwestern California’s B zone was more productive than previous years. Many camps in our hunting area had bucks hanging and one camp had two. Mike Taylor got a shot at a big, wide racked buck but missed and I had one in my sights but could not get a clean sure shot.

Brad Vallerga glasses the Yolla Bolly Wilderness for blacktail bucks. Photo by Casey Allen, MyOutdoorBuddy.com
Brad Vallerga glasses the Yolla Bolly Wilderness for blacktail bucks.

The weather was warm but not oppressively hot. It seemed, by personal observation that the local deer population had increased over the last few years. There were more bucks running around my neighborhood and more deer seen along our rural roads. We were hunting the Six Rivers National Forest in Trinity County and it was obvious that more water, green grasses, and browse was available than in recent memory.

There were also fewer hunters. The absence of four wheeler ATVs was noticeable. The fact that laws restrict which roads the ATVs can travel on and require the use of a helmet either displaced ATV hunters or they left their vehicles at home.

My partner, Brad Vallerga and I hiked into the Yolla Bolly Wilderness before sunrise on a moonlit morning the first day of the season. We met four other hunters at the trailhead with the same thoughts. After a short conference we learned that we both wanted to hunt the same canyon but Brad and I wanted to hunt the lower canyon while the party of four wanted to go up.

From the top of a ridge I watched Brad and the four hunters disappear into the canyon heading in different directions. Two of the guys no sooner dropped out of sight when a buck trotted out between them heading my way. The tall three point buck snuck through their line without being seen, except by me. I was in the perfect position and was sure I would be shooting this buck. He continued trotting and followed the contour of the slope below me. I followed him through my scope and each time he stopped there was some brush in the way of my shot. I had the safety off and even pulled the slack out of my trigger but I just could not get a clean shot. The buck went from 200 yards to over 400 yards away without presenting me an opportunity before disappearing into a ravine. I gave chase but never saw him again.

Shots rang out up the canyon and I figured the party of four had scored. Brad and I worked our way down the canyon but saw no other deer. It was a long hot walk back to the truck. I was happily satisfied by seeing the buck and secretly I was happy to not be packing him out in the heat.

Mike Taylor and Dan Hopper were in their own canyon near camp. Mike came upon a buck and doe and the buck was wearing a heavy set of wide antlers. Mike, who is 65 years old, had to run 50 yards to get a clear shot. He peered through his rifle scope off hand and tried to hold the crosshairs steady. But the excitement and the 50 yard dash were too much and his only shot sailed high.

We have a comfortable camp with great food and close company. We have many weeks left to hunt and can’t wait to get back out there. I’ll let you know what happens.

More Hunting News

Avian influenza found in OR poultry

12/21/14 – Oregon DFW is on the lookout for avian influenza in wild birds in Oregon after the virus was detected in a small backyard poultry flock near Winston, Ore. (Douglas County). ODFW is part of the State of Oregon’s... Full Story

California Waterfowl fundraising events

12/20/14 -- California Waterfowl (CWA) supports and hosts a wide variety of events every month, such as banquets, camps, clean-ups, clinics, competitions, festivals, junior hunts, and shoots. You are encouraged to...  Full Story

Spaces still available for Jr. waterfowl hunts

12/20/14 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is offering a special junior apprentice duck hunt at Grizzly Island Wildlife Area (GIWA) on Saturday, Dec. 27. Spaced blinds on Pond 11 and the Crescent... Full Story

Joice Island pig hunt deadline is Feb. 9

12/20/14 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is offering pig hunting opportunities at Grizzly Island Wildlife Area in Solano County. CDFW will accept application cards through close of business Feb. 9... Full Story

Avian influenza found in WA wild birds

12/19/14 -- Two different strains of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) viruses (H5N2 and H5N8) were isolated from two birds in northwestern Washington as reported on Tuesday, Dec. 16. HPAI has not been detected... Full Story

Amador County man sentenced for poaching

Deer racks confiscated by CA DFW. CA DFW photo
12/19/14 -- A Plymouth man was convicted in Amador Superior Court of multiple deer poaching charges. Gary Michael Creason Jr., age 24, was fined $19,520 for activities involving the take of trophy deer out of season... Full Story

World Champion elk callers crowned

12/18/14 -- Amateur and professional elk callers from California, Idaho, Nevada and Oregon are the new world champions for 2014. Misty Jacobsen of Del Ray Oaks, California took 1st place and Kristy Titus of Prineville, Oregon 2nd place in... Full Story

Don't use B&C scoring on captive deer

12/17/14 -- The Boone and Crockett Club today reaffirmed its objection and rejection to the use of its name and scoring system in conjunction with captive deer and elk. So says an official resolution presented and signed by... Full Story

Federal Duck Stamp to cost $25

  The winner of the 2014 Federal Duck Stamp Contest was Jennifer Miller of Olean, NY, with her acrylic painting of ruddy ducks.  Photo courtesy of USFWS
12/12/14 -- Hunters will be paying another $10 a year to hunt waterfowl starting next year. The cost of the Federal Duck Stamp will go from $15 to $25. The increase is the first cost jump since 1991. Many hunters and organizations... Full Story

Deadline nears for January CWA hunts

12/12/14 – Applications for some of the premier hunts offered in January by California Waterfowl are due at noon on December 15. If you are interested in taking part in these hunts you should contact CWA immediately... Full Story

In the Moment: Oregon Duck Hunt

Reno, a Chesapeake Bay retriever makes a retrieve out of the frigid water of the Crooked River. Photo by Gary Lewis
Article and photos by Gary Lewis
12/10/14 -- "Widgeons," Sackerson whispered. A flock of ducks streaked out of the sunrise and I picked one out, swung with it and put the bead on the tip of its beak and squeezed, followed-through. Missed. Fifteen ducks in... Full Story

Modoc Big Buck honors shared

Sheriff Mike Poindexter of Alturas bagged this beautiful X2 4X4 - 30 inch Buck. Photo courtesy of Sheriff Poindexter
By Lorissa Soriano
12/09/14 -- John Dederick the Mayor of Alturas and yours truly of Alturas, tied for first place to win the Grand Prize for the “Biggest Overall Buck” in the 2014 Modoc Big Buck Contest.
This popular event was sponsored by the Modoc Outdoor... Full Story

F&GC releases 2015 meeting schedule

12/09/14 -- The CA Fish and Game Commission has released its agenda for its January 14 Wildlife Resources Committee meeting in Sacramento as well as the meeting dates and locations for both the WR Committee meetings... Full Story

Bighorn sheep relocated in S. Oregon

Bighorn sheep running out of truck into freedom, ODFW photos
12/08/14 -- ODFW captured and relocated California bighorn sheep at several locations this week to improve genetic diversity among herds and continue efforts to restore this native species in Oregon. Twenty bighorn sheep were released on... Full Story

Economics 101: ‘Hunting Works for Oregon’

12/04/14 -- Stressing the major impact hunting and recreational shooting have on Oregon’s economy, a broad group of local and regional leaders representing sporting organizations, small businesses and retailers today announced... Full Story

CDFW plans deer hunter opinion survey

12/03/14 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is updating its Deer Management Plan. To assist with this planning effort, CDFW has selected Responsive Management, a company specializing in natural... Full Story

December 2014 CDFW Calendar

11/29/14 -- Crow season opens on December 6 and extends through April 8, 2015. General bear season opened concurrently with general deer season in the A, B, C, D, X8, X9A, X9B, X10 and X12 deer hunting zones... Full Story

Are Ducks In Heaven?

Don Webster, Illustration by Everett D. Wilson
By Don E. Webster
11/24/14 -- [Author’s Note: Inevitably, this time of year causes me to reminisce about the many great experiences I've had in the outdoors, many of which were spent in the marshes with friends. I'd like to share a chapter from... Full Story

Bucks & Bulls contest gaining momentum

Elk antlers, Jason Haley
By Jason Haley
11/19/14 -- It’s taken a while, but the annual Bucks and Bulls contest at Sportsman’s Warehouse in Medford is finally taking shape. I stopped by a few days ago and there are now 11 bull elk, 11 blacktail bucks... Full Story

My Best Friend Always Wears a Fur Coat

Don Webster author badge, myoutdoorbuddy.com, The oudoor edge
11/17/14 -- Like many waterfowlers, I’ve been around hunting dogs as long as I can remember. More than likely, when I came home from the hospital as a newborn, there was a hunting dog of some sort riding with me and my mother in the... Full Story

For the turkey hunter in your life

By Frank Galusha
11/17/14 -- Successful Turkey Hunting by John Higley with contributions from J. J. Reich should be in every experienced or would-be turkey hunter’s reading and re-reading list. This book covers all the basics but within every... Full Story

Eden Landing ER hunts to be allowed

Waterfowl hunting at sunrise photo courtesy of CA DFW
10/23/14 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is offering fall waterfowl hunting opportunities at Eden Landing Ecological Reserve (ELER) in Hayward. The reserve includes former salt ponds now managed by... Full Story

C Zone Blacktail

By Dusty Clement
10/03/14 -- This hunt started last year when I discovered an out-of-the-way public piece of property which is very difficult to access taking a boat and a fair amount of hiking through the Sacramento River jungle to reach... Full Story

Don’t forget waterfowl hunt regs!

By Frank Galusha
09/19/19 -- As usual, our waterfowl hunting regulations are complex and the dates are hard to remember. Be safe and carry a regulation booklet with you at all times. Or print out the regulations directly from the CA... Full Story

Vintage Waterfowler

old black and white photo of a skiff loaded with ducks and a man with his shotgun, courtesy of Don Webster
By Don E. Webster
09/16/14 --Having been pursuing waterfowl for over 60 years, I was exposed to its history as a mere child by my grandfather, Wilbur S. Pechin. He hunted ducks and geese along the Platte River in Nebraska in the late 19th... Full Story

Feral pig hunting to start on the SRNWR

08/19/14 -- Beginning September 1, 2014, the Sacramento River National Wildlife Refuge (SRNWR) will allow feral pig hunting in authorized areas. This decision will improve consistency of the refuge hunt plan... Full Story

The buck we didn’t get and two we did

Tyler Low with his 3x4 buck shot at 100 yards with a Weatherby Vanguard .300 Winchester Magnum. Photo by Kyler Olson
By Tyler Low
08/10/14 -- “Can you see him? He is just below the sky line to the left of the big live oak.” The respectable three-point stood only 500 yards away, but my hunting partner, Kyler Olson, couldn’t quite get an eye on him... Full Story

Oregon program takes disabled youths afield

Ashley Jensen in wheel chair in front of blind used when she hunts.
By Jason Haley
07/06/14 -- It began decades ago with a prayer and a broken-winged raven, struggling to move across the beach in the Cook Inlet of Alaska. As former pastor, Ken Coreson watched this scene play out: seagulls... Full Story

John M. Browning

By Don E. Webster
02/05/14 -- One has to wonder how differently the history of not only America, but the entire world would have been if John Moses Browning (January 23, 1855 – November 26, 1926) had not been born... Full Story

Where Are All the Pheasants?

Sacramento Valley Pheasant, Steven T. Callan, Where Have All the Pheasants Gone
On Patrol by Steven T. Callan
The other day a neighbor stopped by my house after two days of hunting pheasants in the Orland area. He said that he and his golden retriever, Milo, had probably walked ten miles and only flushed three birds. Knowingthat I had grown up... Full Story

Ham on the Hoof

Article and photos by Gary Lewis
12/17/13 -- We were climbing a steep gravel ranch road in Charlie’s Toyota when we saw it, as big as a full-grown bear and on a dead run. Charlie hit the brakes and switched off the engine. There was no time to load the rifle. The shaggy, gray... Full Story

Back to the Start

heritage, history of hunting, hunting as a family, Jason Haley, Mt. Shasta, Mount Shasta
Article and photos by Jason Haley
10/18/13 -- I got tipped-off about a bachelor group of bucks from an archer I trust. That never hurts. And after spending opening day in the area, glimpsing two good bucks and seeing how the terrain lays out, I knew exactly... Full Story

Never say never

Never say never, rifle buk, Francisco Garcia, MyOutdoorBuddy.com
By Francisco Garcia
Most of you have heard the saying, patience is a virtue, and I would say persistence is a virtue. If you want to fill your deer tag each season you have to put your time in. If you don’t give in and hunt hard you should be... Full Story

Me and my shadow

Twin melanistic fawns with doe, Me and my shadow, Jean Bilodeaux, MyOutdoorBuddy.com Article and photos by Jean Bilodeaux
10/06/12 -- It’s always amazing to see the huge bucks reappear in the fields in Surprise Valley right after deer season. Many times locals breathe a sigh of relief as the big bucks that disappeared a month earlier now reappear... Full Story

Hunting trip gone bad

Deer holding tight in cover during times of heavy hunting pressure as I was about to find out. Francisco Garcia hunting story. MyOutdoorBuddy.com
By Francisco Garcia
If you asked me what I’d rather be doing, most of the time I would emphatically say, deer hunting. For me nothing gets the juices flowing and the imagination spinning like the arrival of bow or rifle season for deer. When... Full Story

The Mudhen King

Mid-Eighties. I’m writing screenplays. They invite me down to Hollywood, and things look promising, but they want the horse in my story to be green. By that, I mean they actually want a green horse. Green in color. Don’t laugh... Full Story

 

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Website Design Photo Credits: MyOutdoorBuddy.com thanks the following individuals for contributing photographs for use on our Home and Section pages: Anders Tomlinson of Tule-Lake.com, Amber Galusha of Nature-Drunk.com, Casey Allen of Bayside, CA; Jason Haley of Medford, OR; Steve Breth of Burney, CA; Tracy McCormack of Eureka, CA; Grant Thompson of Grand Junction, CO; Richard Bott of Shingletown, CA; Ron Loftus of Yreka, CA; Scott Caldwell of Montague, CA; Lorissa Soriano of Alturas, CA and the late Dave Menke, formerly with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuge Complex.

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