Monday, December 13, 2010

Matt Bullins - Uncommon Ground

For Jason and me, our journey not only begins several years back as we became hunting partners, but it begins every time we pack our bags. As most of you may know, we live on the east coast and hunt primarily in both North Carolina and Virginia. Most anyone who hunts on the east coast can reflect upon and have experienced what we feel as some of the toughest whitetail hunting in the country.

However, take nothing away from hunting in the Blue Ridge Mountains as we do, there are wildlife a plenty and we love where we live. Growing up in northwest North Carolina and Jason in southwest Virginia, we long dreamed about one day being able to chase whitetails somewhere far from home. Having said this, we had no idea that it would actually come true and have Drury Outdoors and their pro-staff to thank.

Reflecting upon the season thus far, Jason and I began to tally mileage, time, and all the necessities that come with traveling out of state to hunt. Needless to say, we were stunned at the results. We had no idea at the efforts we had put forth for this deer season and filming for Dream Season 8: Workin’ Man.

Ultimately, at the end of the road, we will have traveled through nineteen states, hunted in nine states, drove (ALL DRIVING TIME) over 220 hours, and tacked on 13,600 miles, which doesn’t include our flight from Greensboro, NC to Kansas City, Missouri and back for our late season hunt with the rest of Team Reconyx.

Over the past several seasons, Jason and I have become accustomed to traveling and spending much of our time driving to different parts of the country to hunt. However, without doubt, it is something that we enjoy and hope that Drury Outdoors will continue to allow us to do for many years to come. On each trip we take, our goal is to not only to produce hunts, but to meet new people and share experiences with them while doing so.

If you’re on the road somewhere, you never know, look around and you just might see the Virginia Boys in route to their next destination.

Matt Bullins

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Bart Goins - Dream Season Workin' Man

November 25, 2010
Bart Goins- Highs and Lows

Wow, what a year it has been thus far! If you rewind one year ago today, my brother and I were on an all time low with hunting. Last season we hunted five states with only one buck harvest … and it was a management buck at that! It was one of those seasons where you were glad to see it go and start looking forward to NEXT season. Needless to say, there have been many changes since then. Back in April, my brother (Blair) and I submitted yet another video to Drury Outdoors. This time it was an application video for the new upcoming Dream Season 8: Workin' Man. This could be a dream come true … something we had wanted for so long. Matt Drury called us two months later and revealed the good news. The Bama Boys had made the cast for Dream Season 8! We were proud to be the first team ever for Alabama and we wanted to do the state proud. Can I get a ROLL TIDE?! Our summer routines of hunting season preparation was here and gone before we knew it. The season was here and upon us. The season started slow in Kentucky in September with only a doe harvest. But that was good to get our feet wet. I found out on September 8 that I had been laid off at my job at Wiser Company in Murfreesboro, TN. This brought mixed emotions. I was upset from losing my first professional job, but then again it came at a great time in my life. I have no wife, no kids, and no other responsibilities beside myself. After a couple of weeks, I moved all my stuff back to Alabama. At the end of September, we took the long trip out to Misty Morning Outfitters in Kansas. The plan was to look at some properties and hang some sets for November.

October 15 was the Alabama opener for bow season. One of our goals was to kill a four-year-old or older buck in our home state with the PSE. For those of you who are from Alabama …. You know this was not going to be a simple task. Killing a four-year-old buck in any state isn't a simple task., especially with archery equipment in 80 day gun season state. That's right, 80 days! Alabama is a tough state to hunt! But we were up for the challenge. In the days prior to the Alabama opener, the faithful Reconyx had found two definite shooters for us on one of our farms. Daylight pictures at that! Big Heavy and Big Tex were the two deer that were targets for this particular farm. October 15 was upon us and found us sitting on a white oak flat ridge. The conditions were sent from heaven. One hour after first light, the Bama boys had checked in with a four-year-old Alabama bruiser named Big Heavy! We were on an all time high to start the Alabama season. Not to mention … thirty minutes after Blair put a rage in Big Heavy, Big Tex walks twenty yards by our stand. Unreal!
October 22 found big brother and I headed north to Hadley Creek Outfitters in Illinois for the first group hunt of Dream Season. Excited - was an understatement! Upon arriving at the Castle and meeting everybody, the archery competition was underway. The whole Dream Season 8 Cast was given the brand new PSE X Force Dream Season Evo with our names engraved on them. Let me tell you …. I have shot a ton of bows in the past and I have never shot as well as I have the past few weeks with this bow. This bow is WICKED! Without revealing to many surprises on the new season of Dream Season … all I can say was the archery competition was a blast. You know Mark and Terry love to put new twists on things!

Seven days and one big buck later, big brother and I were leaving Hadley Creek and headed to Misty Morning Outfitters in Kansas. I made a ton of friends at Hadley Creek and had so much fun! There are some good people at that place. After 468 miles, we pulled into Misty Morning lodge in Kansas and were ready to start our hunt. I killed my biggest buck to date with a bow five days later. The roadtrip was an overall success!

Hunting can be compared to life in general. It's a series of highs and lows. Blair and I have definitely paid our dues over the last few years. Were on an all time high as this season keeps rolling. Today is Thanksgiving Day and I definitely have a lot to be thankful for: God's forgiveness, great family and friends, and the great sport of HUNTING! Thanks to Mark and Terry for being two of the pioneers of this industry. Thanks to Drury Outdoors for giving my brother and I this wonderful opportunity. Were having a blast! Good luck to you all the rest of the season. There's still a ton of season left so go kill 'em and be safe!


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Ben Rising - What a Year!

Last year Rising/Woods team had an awesome deer hunting season. This year it seems like if there wasn't for bad luck, I wouldn't have any luck at all this season. In order to fully explain all of our bad luck, I need to rewind a few months back to July. My wife Melody was going through a rough time with her back. After finally convincing her to go to the Dr., once she could barely walk, she had Xrays done. Here her left leg is slightly longer than her right which has made her lower spine twisted, vertebra are unaligned vertically and suffering from 2 herniated disks. So she started a long treatment to try and get better. She was desperate to get better not only just to be able to live a normal life again but also to be able to get into a tree by the end of Sept.

Shortly after starting her healing process, our oldest son Zach had an accident. Trying to help me at the mill, he took it upon himself to try and dislodge a piece of wood that was stuck in a conveyor belt. Needless to say, the belt caught his glove and pulled his arm in. He was stuck in the machine for 20 minutes while Jarod Hawkins, his family and my fellow coworkers desperately tried to get him dislodged from the machine. Once we finally got him out I was afraid of what would happen. Surprisingly, while stuck there was little blood, so I was afraid that it would start flowing uncontrollably once we was free. BUT it didn't even though he had a gash about 8" long all the way done to the bone and open about 4" across. After getting him to the hospital he ended up going into surgery for 2hrs to repair his arm. The Dr was completely amazed!! He had just missed his main nerve and artery and could not figure our how he managed to not severe either one. A week after surgery there was signs of infection starting. It was a long recovery for him also, but recover he did and soon started physical therapy to regain strength in his arm. His biggest concern at that point was whether or not he would be able to pull a bow back by the end of Sept.

So basically that is how our summer went. All vacations were canceled and we spent the rest of the summer focusing on getting Melody and Zach healed. Finally by the end of Sept Melody was feeling A LOT better and only needs to go in every so often for adjustments (though her spine is still twisted and unaligned and prob will forever be so) her herniated disks are healed and therefor the pain is gone as long as she stays on top of it. Zach finally ended therapy and has regained strength back from 10lbs to 43lbs of strength in his arm (FYI-he has 96lbs of strength in good arm). Needless to say he will NOT be pulling a bow back this year. But we are just grateful that he will be able to go at all and have use of his arm.

So with all that said and done, it is time for bow hunting season to start. As most know by now, I am partners in an outfitting business with Jarod Hawkins. We start full camp by mid October so that gives me until then to hunt and film on my own personal properties. I have had my sights on a certain buck but he has been completely unpredictable and nocturnal. I was hoping by 1st or 2nd week of Oct he would be showing up more in the daylight. But NO, we hit that Oct lull that everyone's been talking about. The days got shorter, but a whole lot warmer!! Now it seems he has completely disappeared. I haven't gotten a picture of him in over 2wks.

We have had several other nice bucks that we have been keeping an eye on, hoping that they would make it through the season and become some serious studs next year. Unfortunately, we have had calls saying that the bucks we've been watching were harvested by neighbors. One has been hit but not recovered yet. Hope he made it!! I have included a trail photo of one that was harvested that we really hoped would make it. These are deer that have traveled off of our properties and been harvested on by neighbors. One deer in particular that Jarod had been keeping an eye on, was hit on the road. What's a guy to do??

Now it's work time and our hunters started showing up. And let me tell you, it was rough for them too. We were still in that Oct lull when our outfitting started. I don't think Ive ever seen it this bad before. By our second week of outfitting, the bucks were finally on their feet. We had several guys have opportunity, but just didn't make it happen with one wounding a nice one but unable to recover it due to a bad hit. We are now in our 3rd week of outfitting and things are really picking up with several nice harvests. Two of my best buds Kenney Bevans and James Mugrave help us out along throughout the summer hanging stands and such, so they get to come out and hunt our outfitting properties. Kenney was able to harvest a really nice buck on Sunday. I have included a Kodak video of him with his buck.

So now we are keeping our fingers crossed and hustling like crazy to get our hunters deer. In the mean time, I will be guiding and hopefully getting a little free time to get out myself and Melody out and on film. Soon I am scheduled to head out to Iowa and Illinois, so maybe then my luck will change.

Until then I'm hoping the RISING lull will end soon and you will all hear from me soon!!

Ben Rising

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Jared Lurk - Lurk's October Lull Activities

Justin and I have been in the woods several times this season already. We had a great encounter with a 2.5 year old stud (check out “The Inner Circle” dated 10-3-10 to see him), we also saw a shooter that wasn’t close enough for archery tackle and have seen a pile of does. As the October days click by and approach the middle of the month – we are officially enter the “October Lull” period. I first heard about this so called “lull” around 15 years ago when I went to visit Mark and Terry at Deer camp. I remember them saying, during the “lull”, you would be better off doing anything other than hunting deer (in particular – bucks)! That advice has stuck with me ever since then....

With limited vacation days, we try to be as efficient with our time in the woods as possible. We love hunting that early October period when the big boys are still hitting our biologic maximum and trophy oats plots. But when the “October Lull” hits (it usually begins around Mark’s birthday), its back to our daily routines which include working and spending as much time with our loved ones as we can.

To heed that advice garnered from my uncles almost a decade and a half ago – both Justin and I utilized the opportunity to spend some much needed family time prior to venturing back off into the Iowa deer woods to hunt the “rut”.

This past weekend, my daughter Eloise and Justin’s girlfriend’s daughter Liv (they attend the same daycare / preschool) had a Fall Festival. The school had a theme in each of the classrooms with games for the kids to play with candy & snacks for prizes. The kids dressed up in their Halloween costumes, saw all their friends, played a ton of fun games, picked pumpkins from the makeshift pumpkin patch on the playground and ate some delicious food prepared by the teachers. It was great to see them so happy in their costumes, it’s needless to say, but we can not wait for Halloween to get here so they can dress up again.

After Halloween, we will be back at it. Good luck to you all this fall!!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Bric Steward - 2010 Biologic Award

Well talk about a weekend of excitement. Every year 160 something raging whitetail killers converge on St. Louis for the annual DOD Shoot to Thrill Awards. This is a weekend that has become the same as a family reunion to me. It’s a great time to catch up with the rest of the DOD Team and see the trail cams they have gotten of giants though out the summer, hear of out of state trips planned and trade woes and woos about rain or lack there of for our food plots.

Saturday morning is a class for the finest editors in outdoor video/television to update us on the latest technical camera information. The second half of the day is packed full of sponsor rotations. This is where it gets good. It’s a chance for representatives from our sponsors to come and bring the Team up to speed on their newest equipment and even give us sneak peaks of innovations yet to come. And let me tell ya, some of these things are going to make you want to run to Cabela's and start making a Christmas list!! For instance Blake Shelby from PSE was on hand and brought the new Dream Season EVO! WOW, is all I could say after drawing this bow. Michael Mayer was able to show us a few things in the works with the new Cold Fusion Technology and update us on the Numbered Layering system ScentBlocker uses. The HuntVe guys were on hand delivering Mark and Terry’s new Dream Season Edition HuntVe's. We were able to test drive these machines, and what an eye opening experience. It’s unbelievable the thought that went into these vehicles to make them hunter friendly. Craig Cushman was able to unveil the new Dream Season Omega. Oh, and the TV star himself Bobby Cole, or also know as “BobbyLogic”, was able to show us a great new product in the works that will for sure be the “Last Bite” of many monsters(Hint… Hint.)

Then the evening is capped off by the most amazing full featured award show in the entire outdoor industry, The Shoot to Thrill Awards! There are numerous awards handed out throughout the night to various DOD Teams. Some awards to mention are, “Best Reaction”-won by Rod Owen, the “Mossy Oak Passion Award”-won by Rick Malik, Best Produced Bow Madness Episode-won by Dave Reisner and John O’Dell, and the most Prestigious of awards “The Producer of the Year” was won by the Team that truly had a Dream Season last year Doug Hampton and Rod Owen. Dad and I were proud to be nominated for many of these awards and we were floored to have been chosen the winners of the “2010 Biologic Award!” It was a true honor to be presented with this award. Biologic has truly changed the way we hunt and it has truly changed the farms we hunt on. In my opinion Biologic is the winner for producing the best wildlife seed blends on the market, and for changing the quality of hunting experiences brought to everyday hunters across America. Thank you Bobby Cole and Biologic for all you do for the Drury Outdoors Team!

Tom Ware - Make A Kid's Dream Come True

To everyone who has kids or has the ability to take a kid hunting. October is a great time to take a youngster hunting because we all know the giant whitetails that we all want to hunt aren’t moving much until later. It’s usually not too cold for a youngster in October! So take some time off work and make a kids dream come true. Most beginning kid hunters don’t care if they shoot a giant buck. Most just want to spend some time outdoors doing something “different” than shooting hoops or going to school. Hunting is cool to most kids. You have to admit that! So make their day or their week or their season by taking them hunting. You don’t have to use your best honey hole or your best stand, but get out there and let them see some deer. If they are too young to hunt just let them go in a ground blind and hunt with you. These trips hunting will actually be remembered way more than doing the “normal” things as they get older. They won’t remember the times you watched their favorite tv show with them, but many will remember the times you took them hunting and a special moment about each hunt. That will make all the difference down the road and the tradition will carry on.

Most states have an early youth season and are usually very economical. Take advantage of these. Many states have also gone to an over the counter purchase system for the youth hunts just in case you forgot to apply. The opportunities are out there if you just do a little planning.

I got my oldest girl involved in deer hunting at the age of 8 years old. It really depends on the maturity of each kid. I’m not sure my 7 year old will be ready next year, but she sure is trying to convince me she will be. Take them through a hunter’s safety course and see if they listen. If they listen and pay attention, then my feeling is they are probably ready. If they are running around playing and talking during the course and don’t care about what is being taught to them, then maybe wait a year and try again. Just take them hunting with you a time or two and then they will want to hunt themselves. They will see the passion in you and it will develop in them. I promise!

Good luck to all of you this season.

Here are a few pictures of my daughter’s successful hunts. She is only 10 years old now. I can’t wait to see what the next 20 years brings our way!

Tom Ware

Monday, October 4, 2010

Dave Kramer - Burning Lungs, Blisters & Bulls

Burning lungs, blisters and bulls....Not to mention a swollen left knee. That's what you get when two old flat-footed Iowans head out to the higher elevations of western Wyoming to chase giant rocky mountain bull elk. That said, this turned out to be one of those hunts of a lifetime. One in which we hope to continue to do as long and often as our bodies allow.

Being from the upper Midwest, Bill and I cut our teeth on hunting whitetails an turkeys. There's no place like home when it comes to chasing those cagey old mature bucks. However, the older we get the more we feel the need to venture out of our element and try and add a few of the other trophies that call this great country home. Bull elk have been on our list of to dos but have basically kicked our butts each time we've tried to bring one home. This hunt turned out no different than the others as far as filling the freezer goes but was no doubt the closest we've come thus far.

It all started about a year ago when Bill contacted outfitter Tedd Jenkins of Jenkins Hunting Camps in Freedom WY. Tedd told Bill that he, his wife Christy along with his brother in law and sister Brian and Maurie Erickson had just recently purchased the business from his parents Larry and Shirley Jenkins. He also said that they specialize in big bull elk along with Shiras moose, bear, antelope and some of the best Mulies in the lower forty-eight. It worked out that we were able to book the hunt for prime time in the elk rut Sept. 20th-25th. Things were set and it couldn't get here soon enough. Bill and I prepared ourselves for the hunt by biking and hiking as much as possible.

When time finally arrived for the hunt we started things off by heading to ST. Louis for the annual Drury Outdoors meeting and Shoot to Thrill Awards banquet. It was great to see all the guys and get fired up for the upcoming season. In order to get to camp for our first mornings hunt we said our goodbyes and left the hotel at 2:30 AM to make the long 22 hr butt-kicking drive to western WY. We arrived at 11:30 PM Mountain time at camp. The next five days were filled with encounter after encounter as well as breath taking beauty of the Bridger national forest. We saw and videoed elk, Shiras moose, antelope, and mulies. We stayed in heated wall tents and rode in on horseback for a couple day's hunts. We ate like kings and hiked it all off during the day. There was no time to waste as Tedd and Larry kept us at from dawn to dusk to try and make this hunt successful. I can't say we've ever met an outfitter more sincere and prepared to do what it took to make our hunt the best it could be, and we definitely got our moneys worth on this one. We would both like to thank them for all they did and let them know what an awesome experience it was. Regardless of all our efforts, Bill was unable to take his bull on this hunt but you can bet we'll be back again next year for another try. This time I'll be in front of the camera with PSE in hand to try for my first ever Rocky Mountain Elk.

PS. Anyone interested in any of the big game hunts they have to offer, contact Tedd through his website

Friday, August 6, 2010

Jeff Lindsey - Rain Makes Corn...

Rain makes corn, beans makes booners. Too much rain makes for stressed out farmers and deer managers. Ever since turkey season we have experienced excessive rain fall that would make Seattle jealous. However over the last couple of weeks we have gotten a break and the beans have really shot up. The corn has been spotty but we look to be having bumper crops on the high ground.

Rainy growing seasons usually make for great antler production and this year it looks like that is going to be just the case. The first two rounds of Reconyx cameras have been a little slow but have shown us some good growth on some up and comers. The big boys haven’t really appeared yet but every year it seems when the calendar flips to August they decide to go public on their appearances.

August is my favorite month to get a buck inventory on our farms, it seems the big boys let their guard down to fill the desires of their stomachs and we hope to take advantage of that with some well placed cameras and glassing the bean fields the last 2 hours of light. As hard as it is, I have been trying to give the cameras 2-3 weeks before checking them to keep my scent at a minimum. This makes for a serious waiting game but the moment I get those cards in my hands its like Christmas morning all over! Till the next round of pictures I’ll be waiting and trying to imagine what might show up. -Jeff

Steve Coon - Workin It!

On a hot July day with temperature near a 100 degrees, I found myself doing my first in store for the up coming deer season! One of the owners of Dunn’s Sporting Goods asked if I would be available to work the opening of their fall sale and without hesitation I said yes.

Dunn’s is a store where you can get up close and personal with the consumer and it gives you a chance to show your knowledge of the products that we at Drury are sponsored by.

So whenever I get a chance to do that let me tell you I’m there! So prior to the store opening I did a little scouting to see where all the products were located and I was pumped to see that they carried all of sponsor’s merchandise.

As the doors open that morning, it was time to work the crowd. When I was asked what I thought was a better product there was no hesitation on what to show the customers, from the new Early Dream Season Suit from Scent Blocker in the new Infinity by Mossy Oak to all the Scent Blocker products.

Even though the store had numerous tree stands on sale I was able to give my honest opinion on the Big Game Tree Stands on how rock solid they were along with being one of the most comfortable stands that I have ever hunted out of.

So as I represented Drury Outdoors on that hot July day, I had a chance to show case my knowledge on all our products from PSE Bows, Rage, Bio-logic, Nikon, and Scent Blocker. Funny though I tried to get behind the gun counter to sell a few Thompson Centers, but the guys said the way I shoot it might not be a good idea. Wow a comedian in every crowd!

It just goes to show you when we work an in store we can be a great salesmen, because who has better knowledge of the products then us! The boys at Drury Outdoors!!!!

Next stop Bass Pro Shop August 7th with Terry and a few Drury Team Members. I hope to see you there!

Before I end this I did meet one special fan Anna. When her mom told me that Anna and her brother were big fans of Drury Outdoors and that she wanted a photo with me to show her brother, I knew right then and there that my day was complete. So Anna thank you from all the guys at Drury for being one of our fans and make sure you thank your brother also. Again thank you Anna!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Bric Steward - Hitting The Streets

Tic-Toc,Tic-Toc, the time has finally came! May 15th Baby! The release of the new videos: Dream Season 13, Whitetail Madness 13, and 100% Wild Fair Chase Vol 10!  Every year before I was part of the DOD Team, I could not wait until the new videos came out. I would sit and wonder of what giants where slain. And now, well it's even more of a tease because we've got a thing called..."The Journal."  If you haven't checked it out, brother you are missing out. We are like a donkey with a carrot dangling in front of our nose, we can see the pics of these behemoths and read the story of these behemoths, but have to wait until this very date, until they "Hit the Streets", May 15th. Now you know what I'm talking about. Well for the "Hitting the Streets" event this year a lot of the DOD Team was going to be out and about doing what we love to do (other than sittin' 25 ft high) talking to You, the fans, about our new videos! I went to St.Louis

Cabelas along with "The Marine" Aaron Bennett, Matt Drury, Taylor Drury, and Steve "Coon Dog" Coon. While there we got to meet a lot of great hunters. This is what it's all about, all the hard work comes down to actually seeing you guys come out and share these experiences with us through these videos. And these videos are "Off the Chain!" Every year I wonder how they are going to top last years, but WOW did they. We truly have the best editors out there! If you don't believe it just watchem'! Well, now it's time to do a little target practicing with the PSE, hit the river for some sun, and make up some brownie points with the wife for this coming fall(I love you Rachel)! HA!  Hang in there ya'll, it'll be fall soon! (at least I keep telling my self that)

 PS. Thanks to Everyone who came out to see us, as Mark and Terry always say about the videos, "They were created for you!"

Monday, March 22, 2010

Kyle Lamore - Off Season Antics

What to do in the off season?? That is a question we find ourselves trying to answer every year about this time. To try to keep our shooting skills sharp, for the last eight weeks, we have been involved with our local bow shop's shooting league. Myself, JJ Kolesar, and our two buddies Ben and Todd have been trying our best to oust the 25 competing 4 man teams. Although we didn't bring home the trophy, we had alot of fun shooting the DART target system and a variety of pop up targets every week. However, it is the "iron buck" that creates the most havoc every Monday night.

The iron buck is the last shot of the evening, although not required to be shot, it can earn each shooter 10 bonus points at the end of the night, which I usually need! That's the good news, however it can also destroy an arrow quicker than any shoulder blade! The hole is roughly the size of a baseball, and from 30 yards, along with plenty of verbal jabs from buddies, can be quite interesting. I have been fortunate enough to slip a couple through in the last few weeks. However, as you can see, sometimes the arrows aren't so lucky! Despite a snowed out shed hunt this past weekend in Iowa, the weather looks to be turning and Kansas spring gobblers are less than 2 weeks away! Good luck this spring!

-Kyle and JJ