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    2008 June - Desert Rat - The Premier Hunting and Fishing Blog of the Southwest!

    Archive for June, 2008

    Ben Peason Pride - Adding A Stabilizer

    I have to give a big tip of the hat (again) to Vince over at Alpine Archery. They have for all intents and purposes, pretty much outfitted my Ben Pearson bow. The only non-Alpine attachments are the drop-away rest, and the sight. In all fairness, Vince sent me a rest as well, but I already had agreed to do a review on the Trophy Taker rest. Have no fear though - my good friend Dan happened to be in need of a rest. He’s a great writer too, so he agreed to do a review on the Whisper Flite rest. Alpine doesn’t do sights, so I will be going with one from Vital Gear. Vince really has gone above and beyond - he’s been extremely generous to this not-yet-famous outdoor writer/blogger, and it is VERY MUCH appreciated. As is the cooperation and support that I have received from all of the manufacturers involved.

    A couple of other miscellaneous mentions also (is this starting to sound like an Emmy Award acceptance speech?) My Pearson bow comes with Bowjax. Bowjax makes a variety of highly effective dampeners which significantly reduce vibration. My bow also comes with Vapor Trail strings and cables. Vapor Trail is known industry-wide for their high-quality products.

    Back to the task at hand. You can review some previous posts HERE. My most recent post in the series can be found here.

    The stabilizer I chose for my bow is the MR Series. According to Alpine, “The Alpine Archery stabilizer line is designed with every feature being a practical standard. The Pro Flex Stabilizers dissipate more recoil than any other stabilizer in the industry today. The rubber body and ribbing are designed specifically to tame any of today’s most radical bows. The MR Series Stabilizer’s function is recoil reduction and counterbalance. The “Six Shooter” head weight is designed to give you the ability to change the weight up to 2 oz. by adding or subtracting the 158 grain .357 slugs that are provided with the stabilizer. Using the Flex Coupler (licensed Doinker Technology), the MR stabilizers reduce recoil and keep vibrations to a minimum. The MR stabilizers are fitted with the Alpine exclusive Tactical Rubber Bra. This feature works as a dampener as well as protects the stabilizer from making noise when bumped against a treestand or brush. If noise and recoil are an issue, Alpine Archery Stabilizers are the answer…”

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    Posted on 30th June 2008
    Under: Archery, Hunting, Products | 1 Comment »

    This Ain’t Your Daddy’s Tune-Up!

    There’s nothing wrong with taking your pride and joy down to Ol Jimmy at the Bow Emporium to work on, but there is another option. I’ve been talking to James and Adam over at Pro Bow Tuning Services. These guys are taking bow tuning to the next level.

    Owners Adam Guggisberg and James Loesch are no strangers to archery. (From their website): Adam has been successful in many areas of archery competition including NFAA, NAA, & 3-D shooting a compound bow as well as Olympic style FITA competition.

    Adam has been competing for over 26 years. He has gained knowledge of equipment setup, tuning, form, and shot execution & the various mental aspects of the sport thru years of local & national level tournament experience. He has been providing equipment setup services as well as private instruction for Houston area shooters for more than 7 years.

    Adam is a level II NAA certified archery instructor. You can read more about Adam here on his website. www.GuggisbergArchery.com.

    James has been involved in archery since age 10 (1980). He won his first National Championship at age 13. Since then, he has been fortunate enough to have won twelve more. He has also been a member of two US Archery Teams (USAT).

    James has been providing custom bowgrips for archers around the world since 1994 (www.bowgrips.com). He has most recently provided a release aid solution for archers struggling with target panic with his superior true back tension design. (www.truebacktension.com)

    As a level III NAA certified instructor, James has provided highly effective guidance to archers all across the state of Texas for over 14 years!

    These guys offer an impressive variety of services, priced competitively into great packages, or on an individual basis. Services include Bow Tuning Services, Arrow Tuning Services, Tuning ans Set Up Packages, and Individual Instruction as well.

    The value of their services to anyone in the Houston area is imminently obvious. I asked Adam if it was practical for people living in other locales to send work to their shop. Adam’s reply:

    Marshall - It (our site) is absolutely intended to support a national level audience. The intent is to help those folks that do not have a shop close to them or within reasonable driving distance as well as those who simply want more out of their setup. The service that I offer is above & beyond what a typical archery can or will offer. We focus on the details that make a difference when it comes to performance! Most pro shops are great at getting equipment setup and out the door. This allows folks to start flinging arrows; however when they reach a certain level they want more accuracy and more performance out of their equipment.

    Any hunter that has an expensive once in a lifetime hunt booked would benefit from our service by ensuring that they have a solid foundation that will not stretch or move, and that their bow is properly setup & tuned. The cost of my service versus the peace of mind and performance gained is very small in comparison to missing the Deer or Elk of a lifetime that you spent $5k to get a shot at!!! Note also that the cost of shipping vsthe cost of gas and it is a no brainer if you are looking for the ultimate setup! Especially if you do not have a shop right around the corner.

    Whether you’re in need of a tune-up or a complete overhaul. You seriously ought to talk to these guys. If you need some hands-on instruction to improve your accuracy, same thing - look them up.

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    Posted on 29th June 2008
    Under: Archery, General, Hunting, Products | 3 Comments »

    Hunter’s Ed Class

    My daughter is ten and has always been interested in hunting and fishing. I have her scheduled for a class in September. I will take it along with her. We could’ve taken the online class but I really wanted her to have the full experience. The quality of the instructors is top-notch, and I think there are some things you just can’t get from an online training.

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    Posted on 29th June 2008
    Under: General | 1 Comment »

    Bighorn Sheep Workshop

    From AZGFD:

    Come learn about magnificent bighorn sheep

    The Arizona Game and Fish Department is offering wildlife enthusiasts an opportunity to learn about the sure-footed bighorn sheep and view them in their native habitat during two separate two-day workshops on July 25-26 and Aug. 1-2.

    The first day of each workshop involves mandatory classroom education from 6-8 p.m. at the Kingman Game and Fish office, followed the next day by a field trip on the Colorado River from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

    The popular workshops are open to any member of the public age 14 and older. Space, however, is limited to 40 people per session. Although preference will be given to those who have not attended the workshop in the last two years, everyone is encouraged to apply.

    The 2008 workshops will feature a draw process. Applications received prior to June 27 will be drawn at random. Officials hope this will help level the playing field for all of those interested in attending. All requests to participate are responded to by mail.

    The workshop includes an optional tour of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Willow Beach National Fish Hatchery prior to the Colorado River field trip. The 45-minute tour will begin at 9 a.m. and will feature both sport fish and endangered native fish.

    Registration is by mail only, so to reserve a spot, a $20 per person refundable deposit is required in the form of a check made out to the Wildlife for Tomorrow Foundation to help reduce the problem of no-shows. Send your check to: Sheep Workshop, Arizona Game and Fish Department, 5325 N. Stockton Hill Road, Kingman, AZ 86409. Include the names of participants, address, phone, and specify which weekend is preferred. Also, please include a note if you are interested in the tour of the fish hatchery.

    Participants are encouraged to bring a camera, water, snacks, a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Temperatures are forecast to be in the triple digits on the water!

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    Posted on 26th June 2008
    Under: Arizona News, Events, Press Releases | No Comments »

    Adding a new handgun

    I’m not much of a gun collector. My goal, the past couple of years has been to have a shotgun, a rifle suitable for deer and elk, a blackpowder rifle, a .22, a rifle for predators, and a handgun. I have owned 2 Taurus PT92 pistols in the past, and they worked extremely well for me. I was not opposed to owning another one, by any means. This time though, I was interested in a revolver. A .357 Magnum or better - I wanted to use it for hunting javelina, and also keep it as a home defense weapon. I have been watching the “For Sale” topics, over at the Arizona Shooting forums. Up popped a gun I have been interested in for a long time. A Taurus Tracker in .41 Magnum. This one is a beaut. Ported barrel, stainless steel, great grips. You can view the Taurus Specs Here/

    No range time yet, but will keep you posted. I have been hearing and reading a lot of good things about this caliber. I plan on taking a CCW course in the future.

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    Posted on 26th June 2008
    Under: General | 1 Comment »

    BOW Workshop in August

    Registration opens for Becoming an Outdoors Woman workshop

    The last “Becoming an Outdoors Woman” (BOW) workshop for 2008 will be held Aug. 15-17 at the cool, forested Friendly Pines Camp near Prescott.

    The program introduces women to outdoors skills in an enjoyable, non-threatening environment with expert instructors. Classes are held during the day and include horsemanship, outdoor photography, birding, hiking, archery, fly-fishing, shotgun/rifle/pistol shooting, and Dutch oven cooking, among others. Evenings are filled with fun and entertainment, including night hikes, musicians, and motivational speakers.

    “One great thing about this camp is that a woman can try a new sport without buying all of the equipment.” says Linda Dightmon, the BOW coordinator for the Arizona Wildlife Federation, which sponsors the program in partnership with the Arizona Game and Fish Department. “The only thing you need to bring is your personal stuff, a good attitude and a willingness to learn.”

    Participants stay in rustic cabins, but there are showers and bathrooms in each cabin, and a central dining hall for meals.

    Equipment, materials, food and lodging are all included in the $235 registration fee. The only exception is the outdoor photography class, where participants will need to bring a camera. Enrollment is open to all women 18 and older.

    For more information, a schedule of classes, and a registration form, visit www.azwildlife.org or contact the Arizona Wildlife Federation office at (480) 644-0077 or awf@azwildlife.org.

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    Posted on 26th June 2008
    Under: Arizona News, Conservation Groups, Events, Press Releases | 1 Comment »

    Game and Fish Commission Seeks Nominations

    I have actually been nominated for the Writer Award before. This is a cool program! From AZGFD:

    Game and Fish Commission solicits nominations for 2008 awards

    The Arizona Game and Fish Commission is soliciting nominations for its 2008 Commission Awards to recognize Arizonans who have contributed significantly to the welfare of the state’s wildlife and the mission of the Arizona Game and Fish Department.

    Nominations may include individuals, organizations, clubs, foundations or government agencies. Arizona Game and Fish Department employees are not eligible for nomination.

    Categories for nomination include: Award of Excellence, Youth Environmentalist of the Year, Outdoor Writer of the Year, Media of the Year, Conservation Organization of the Year, Conservationist of the Year, Outdoor Woman of the Year, Environmentalist of the Year, Volunteer of the Year, Educator of the Year, and License Dealer of the Year.

    To download a nomination form, visit www.azgfd.gov/commission and follow the awards link.

    Return the nomination form and all supplemental materials to: Arizona Game and Fish Department, Attn: Marty Fabritz - DOHQ, 5000 W. Carefree Highway, Phoenix, AZ 85086. Forms can also be faxed to (623) 236-7299 or e-mailed to either Directorsoffice@azgfd.gov or Mfabritz@azgfd.gov. Submission deadline is 5 p.m., Aug. 1, 2008.

    Another award category for which nominations are being solicited is the Wildlife Habitat Stewardship Award. This award recognizes nongovernmental entities that have excelled in the preservation, enhancement or creation of land management practices beneficial to Arizona’s wildlife resources.

    Nominees for the Wildlife Habitat Stewardship Award must be a legal resident of Arizona, control a minimum of 160 acres in the state, be engaged in agribusiness sometime in the last five years on at least 50 percent of their land, allow public recreational access to at least 50 percent of the land under their control, and must exercise wildlife habitat conservation and enhancement practices. Nominations meeting these criteria will be circulated to the Landowner-Lessee-Sportsman Committee, which will recommend nominees to the Game and Fish Commission for final selection.

    To download a nomination form, visit www.azgfd.gov/commission and follow the awards link.

    The awards will be presented to the winners at the Meet the Commission banquet on Jan. 17, 2009, at the Four Points by Sheraton Phoenix North at 10220 N. Metro Parkway East, Phoenix.

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    Posted on 25th June 2008
    Under: Arizona News, Events, General, Press Releases | No Comments »

    Loesch Enterprises Announces New Release

    James Loesch is pleased to announce his new “Jackrabbit” release. Loesch is well known for his quality custom grips as well as his backtension releases.

    Loesch states the following about this exciting new release:

    More adjustable trigger tension than any other release - AND STAYS CONSISTENT!

    ZERO Travel

    Precision machined competition quality

    Buckle or Velcro

    ONLY $74.95-$79.95 MSRP !!!

    Ask your dealer or contact us at info@bowgrips.com

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    Posted on 24th June 2008
    Under: General, Products | No Comments »

    Information sought in deer poaching case near Kingman

    I hate poachers. From AZGFD:

    Information sought in deer poaching case near Kingman

    The Arizona Game and Fish Department is seeking information that could help lead to the arrest of the individual(s) responsible for the recent poaching of a mule deer near Kingman.

    The incident occurred on or around May 27 southwest of Bull Mountain, just west of Stockton Hill Road. The carcass was left to waste.

    “This is not the act of sportsmen,” said Michael Rice, wildlife manager in Region III. “This is a blatant example of poachers’ disrespect for wildlife and the laws that ensure our wildlife resources are available for future generations to enjoy.”

    The mule deer was a mature doe and Game and Fish biologists consider this to be a major loss to the residents of Arizona.

    “We need help from the public in catching this poacher,” Rice said. “If anyone saw or heard anything related to this criminal act, we need to know. A person might have bragged about the crime during a conversation. Any information, no matter how trivial, might help us in the investigation.”

    Erin Riddering, game specialist in the Kingman office, said the loss of a doe in the Cerbat Mountains should be of concern to all the residents in the area. Drought, predation, and habitat loss have diminished overall population numbers.

    “A doe can have offspring until their death,” Riddering said. “There’s no telling how many generations of deer were impacted by this single criminal act.”

    To report information on this, or any Game and Fish violation, call the department’s Operation Game Thief hotline at (800) 352-0700. Caller identities will remain confidential upon request and callers may be eligible to receive a reward of at least $250 upon the arrest of the violator.

    Information may also be given directly to the Kingman Game and Fish office, or by calling the office at (928) 692-7700.

    What a big tough man that is. Geez.

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    Posted on 24th June 2008
    Under: General | No Comments »

    Commission expected to set dove, crane and band-tailed seasons

    From AZGFD:

    Commission expected to set dove, crane and band-tailed seasons

    During its upcoming two-day meeting in Phoenix on June 27-28, the Arizona Game and Fish Commission will set the seasons for dove, band-tailed pigeons and sandhill cranes, consider what organizations get special big game tags to auction or raffle to raise funds for wildlife management, and make awards for shooting range grants.

    The meeting will be held at the Arizona Game and Fish Department headquarters at 5000 W. Carefree Highway in Phoenix.

    The Friday portion begins with an executive session at 8 a.m., followed by the public meeting. Friday’s agenda includes consideration of department budget proposals for fiscal years 2010 and 2011; briefings on legislative and Arizona lands activities; informational presentations on a state trust land ballot initiative and the T.I.M.E. Coalition’s transportation initiative; and license revocation hearings.

    Saturday’s agenda includes:

    Consideration of applications from organizations for 2009-2010 special big game license tags to raise money for wildlife management efforts;
    Approval of the 2008-09 commission orders for doves, band-tailed pigeons and sandhill cranes;
    Awarding of shooting range grants for fiscal year 2009;
    An informational briefing on the status of new air quality regulations by county and local governments (and their potential impact to vehicular access by hunters and anglers in Maricopa and Pinal counties) pursuant to passage of Senate Bill 1552.
    A complete agenda is available at the department’s Web site at www.azgfd.gov/commission.

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    Posted on 23rd June 2008
    Under: Arizona News, Hunting, Press Releases | No Comments »

    Adding Alpine Accessories

    I have been detailing progress of my bow project. You can view my last post HERE. You may also have read a previous post where I was thanking Alpine Archery for the generosity in supplying several great products! Well, after some weekends filled with yard work, some minor family medical issues, and a mini-vacation up north, I’m finally getting back on track.

    One of the items supplied by Alpine was a Mach 5 cable slide. According to Alpine, they created this new cable slide by combining Teflon and rubber into a high-tech composite housing, making the Mach 5 the best cable slide available. Based on technology from the proven Alpine Glide Slide that has been in the line for years, this new slide is the ultimate in combining craftsmanship and function. Many companies claim to come up with “SLICK” ideas… Alpine Archery has taken it literally. Alpine Archery has brainstormed another revolutionary accessory for 2007, The Alpine Mach 5 Cable Slide… Since the cable slide is a necessary part of your setup, we have taken every feature into account and come up with the slipperiest, quietest, fastest cable slide available. The NEW Mach 5 Cable Slide features a Teflon slide surface, press fit into a rubber, vibration dampening sleeve, and capped off with a space age looking slide body that is fitted with a termination point for a fall away rest pull cord if desired. Cousin to the ever successful Alpine Glide Slide, this little gem is a sure fit on any bow utilizing a 3/8” diameter cable guard. It is available in brown, or a high definition camouflage film finish. Don’t let your shot of a lifetime vanish before your eyes because of an inferior, squeaky, or slow cable slide.

    One thing I like about the slide is the termination point for the rest pull cord. Installation of the cable slide was quick and easy. Workmanship of the slide was of a high standard.

    In a post later this week, I’ll discuss the Alpine Stabilizer that I will be using.

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    Posted on 23rd June 2008
    Under: General | No Comments »

    OHV Bill Stalled

    This is ridiculous, For once, I agree with the AZ Republic. If nothing else, this should have gone to a vote at least; or kicked back with recommendations. Doing nothing is not working!

    For any who missed this Az Republic editorial:

    Give our lands a break

    The Arizona Republic
    Jun. 20, 2008 12:00 AM

    You shouldn’t be reading this editorial.

    We shouldn’t have to write it.

    But an off-highway vehicle bill is stalled in the state Senate. Despite overwhelming support on all sides. Despite the threat to OHV recreation. Despite a “yes” vote in the House way back in March.


    The Senate has had three months to approve an OHV-registration system that would provide the resources to regulate, enhance and repair damage from one of Arizonans’ favorite outdoor activities. Without steps to ensure responsible OHV use, more and more public land will simply be closed off to motorized access.

    Now, with the Legislature scrambling to come up with a budget by June 30, the bill could get lost in the shuffle.


    The proposal, Senate Bill 1167 (formerly House Bill 2573), has an eye-popping array of allies. They include OHV organizations, hunters, environmentalists, Arizona Game and Fish and motorized-recreation dealers. Even the Sierra Club and National Rifle Association join hands on this issue.

    We all have a stake in this bill.

    The number of off-highway vehicles in Arizona has skyrocketed, up 347 percent in the past decade according to Game and Fish. OHV recreation has a big economic impact from dealers to sports retailers.

    But there’s too little money for law enforcement, signage, trail development, education and restoring habitat. In the fragile desert environment, the destruction lasts for decades when vehicles barrel willy-nilly across the landscape. The Sonoran Desert National Monument has suffered so much damage that a large area was recently barred to OHV use.

    The math is simple: More irresponsible use equals less access to public land.

    So what’s the hang-up?

    Apparently, there’s some resistance among a few lawmakers to the registration fee, even though it will be a very modest amount, perhaps $20, according to Game and Fish. This is a user fee, with direct benefits to the person who pays it, not a general tax increase.

    The bill should at least come to a vote.

    If you love the desert, off-highway recreation, hunting, fishing, wildlife and everything else that makes Arizona an outdoor wonderland, urge your state senator to push for a vote. If you’re not sure of your senator or how to get in touch, go to www.azsenate. gov or call the information desk at 602-926-3559 (toll-free: 800-352-8404).

    The Senate’s Republican leaders - President Tim Bee, Majority Leader Thayer Verschoor and Majority Whip John Huppenthal - should make sure the OHV bill gets to the floor.

    Arizona will lose if they don’t.

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    Posted on 22nd June 2008
    Under: General | 2 Comments »