Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Dave Reisner - Getting Started

He collects his arrows and grabs his bow and heads down to the Glen Del Buck target to put in some quality practice time.  He positions himself at just the right distance lets all but one of his arrows fall to the turf and knocks his first arrow.  With an almost effortless pull of his string he is poised and ready to let his first arrow fly.  With flawless form he settles in on his pin and with no hesitation lets it rip.  The arrow slices through the air on the way to his intended target where it hits it squarely in the neck.  This is followed by "Dad, I got em."  As the rest of his arrows are released one by one with most of them hitting the target the eager 6 year old can't wait to show Dad of his success.
As I explain to him once again that he really wants to aim for the heart and lungs he innocently confesses that he knows that and that is where he was trying to aim.  With Dads blessing and approval he quickly collects all his arrows and lines back up for another round.
As any father would do, a big smile overcomes my face as I watch my son's unbridled enthusiasm as he releases each arrow.  After twenty minutes or so he is tuckered out and puts his bow and arrows back and moves on to his next adventure of the day. 
So far with my sons I have been overly passive with regard to hunting, shooting or anything related.  I always invite them along and try to make it as fun for them as possible, but I let them decide how much participation they want to have and when they are ready to take the next step.  As any parent would know it's not hard to figure out when they really want something as they can be relentlessly persistent in bugging their parents in these times. 
My son recently attended a NWTF Jakes Day where he won his new bow and this has started a real enthusiasm for shooting.  It is not like this was the first bow he had, more like the third or fourth, but this one may have come at the right time as he is ready for it this time.  I've already had to get an additional half dozen arrows as the knocks or fletchings had been worn off.
Weather this is his start into a lifetime of shooting a bow and the evolution that would ensue or just another monthly phase that he'll be into and out of is yet to be determined, but as father who loves the sport I can only hope that he has been bitten by the same bug that still affects me today!  -Dave Reisner

Kyle Lamore - Summertime Scouting!!

With summer vacation in the rear view mirror and fall quickly approaching it's that time to start putting our game plan together for this hunting season!   For the first time in a long time, we will actually be hunting the same lease that we bowhunted last year. The good news is the  same property means that a lot of the legwork is already done such as hanging sets, food plots, trimming lanes etc.  The bad is the landowner does not allow any gun hunting on the farm so we have  had to focus our attention elsewhere for those three Illinois gun  weekends. We started hanging Reconyx cameras a few months ago and were pleasantly surprised to see alot of familiar faces as well as a few new ones. One deer in particular that stands out is a deer by the name of "niner". Although "niner" doesnt really seem to fit anymore because he is now a "tenner"; he still remains very high on our hitlist. However, the problem is that last year we found this deer almost un-killable. Despite being one of the most photogenic deer on the property getting pics of him on literally almost every camera, we never saw him one time from the stand. His pattern proved very unpredictable and for the most part was a nighttime mover. So...the question we have to ask ourselves this year is:

How much time should we spend trying to kill this deer? ?  ? ?

What would you do?

On one hand I feel since this deer was almost impossible last year, being a year older at 5.5 now he will be even elusive and nocturnal. However, it is very difficult to just ingore a 160" deer that is living right on your farm. 

Do we just mount our efforts on another hit-lister?? Mabye just wait until the rut?  I still am unsure on what we will decide, hopefully the Reconyx can help us with this decision in the next month before season opens. 


We also had the opportunity to take care of the missing piece of the puzzle (no gun hunting our farm) by meeting up with Shawn Lucky at Illinois Extreme Whitetails in Pike, Adams and Brown county recently. From the looks of the lodge and farms so far, we are going to be in for a treat with  the accommodations and hunting.  I have been fortunate enough to stay at alot of nice places, however this lodge without a doubt is the king of all. Shawn took us around for the weekend giving us some different options and had the opportunity to see some great deer while we were out scouting. Both quality and quantity of deer seemed evident and I cannot wait for November to get here to head north and try our luck! Good luck to all this fall!

Kyle Lamore
JJ Kolesar

Bart Goins - No Longer Rookies

August is finally wrapping up and I could not be more relieved. Its been a long and hot summer for us! I work hard all spring and summer with my business, and then I take off for deer season. I am definitely starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel! Not to mention, Alabama football kicks off this weekend!!! Roll TIDE!

In the next few weeks, our second whitetail season for Dream Season The Journey will begin. Last year we had so much fun despite having the toughest season we have ever had. We learned so much from all the Drury teams last year and I truly feel like I will be better prepared and equipped for this season. We have some amazing hunts lined up for this fall and our southern farms are looking promising.
After last years season, Blair and I began searching leasing opportunities in Illinois. We have great farms in our home state, but we wanted a farm that would really give us an edge to compete with the other teams on the Journey. So what better state, then in Illinois? We finally found the farm that we wanted in Brown County, IL.
Throughout the summer we have spent three different weekends up there preparing the farm for the upcoming season. We leased from one heck of a guy who has done everything he can to help us. This summer we have put together box blinds, put up Big Game lock ons, cleared off brush and planted Biologic, and set up several Reconyx cameras. The first batch of Reconyx pictures absolutely blew me away. We have got some true giants to hunt this year and I absolutely cannot wait for the game to begin.The biggest problem we have been faced with this summer is the drought. Our new farm has been so dry, literally only receiving four-tenths of an inch of rain since middle of June. Our food plots were planted last week, and I have never prayed for rain so hard! I even went to church on Wednesday! God answered our prayers with sending over two inches of rain on the farm this past Sunday night.
Good luck to all my fellow hunters out there this fall. Blair and I are going to do our very best to bring all of you the best footage that Dream Season can offer. Over the next few months we will hunt over five states and put tons of miles on our trucks. Definitely going to be a busy fall, and on top of that, Im building a house and getting married right after the season! Stay safe and good luck. College football is back and if ya'll want to watch a team that WINS, watch the TIDE! Number 15, here we come!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Dave Reisner - Tough Summer

This summer has been tough!  The lack of rain has really taken its toll on the food plots and my sanity. To understand where I am coming from let me digress. I have made it through the massive floods of 2008 and then reoccurring floods the next few years after to now the past two years being in drought circumstances.  Through all this I have gained much more empathy for the farmers that rely on crops and the all powerful Mother Nature for their livelihood.  I used to think farmers just liked to hear themselves complain and that they were never happy no matter what weather was doing. 
The story hits a little closer to home when you have some sweat equity invested in even "small" scale food plots as well as money invested for fertilizer, seed, and roundup. Not to mention the tractors, implements, diesel fuel and all the miscellaneous costs I spend each year.  Do I sound like a farmer yet? 

So back to the present!  I have been checking on my corn fields every week to see what I can expect for corn production and make decisions on whether or not I need to mow it down and start fresh with fall green food sources. 
Of my 3 main areas planted all within 3 weeks I have all ends of the spectrum covered.
The first area planted I will actually make corn and although the field did show signs of serious stress it got just enough moisture late to fill out the ears and I am confident that it would yield 150 bushel or better per acre if it was to be harvested.

The second field planted, probably 10 to 12 acres, I will be considering a total loss and have already mowed some of it down to plant fall greens. It turned yellow earlier and never got taller than 6'.  Even this field after a couple late rains shows signs of trying to still produce an ear of corn, but realistically it is too late for this corn. 
The last field planted which is about a 5 acre corn field has a mixture of both good areas and some areas that look like it burned up.  All in all I think it would average 80 bushel per acre. 
My conclusion is that I do not completely understand the corn plant and its needs at variable times of growth, but overall I'm amazed at its resourcefulness to at any cost try to produce an ear of corn.    
….Now I'm just praying for rain for my fall green plots!!!! -Dave Reisner

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Dave Kramer - Summer Vacation

Everyone reading this has probably been experiencing the same brutally hot and dry Summer that we here in Iowa have had.  That said, my family and I couldn't wait for August 3rd to get here so we could jump in the truck and head north to Ontario, Canada for a much needed vacation.  Good friends Kris and Annette Lenz had invited us to crash their annual Zehr family fishing trip.  It just so happened to be Annette's father Gerald's 50th trip to Press Lake and they were celebrating by filling camp with over 50 family and friends.  This resort is also where I harvested my first black bear nearly ten years ago. 
    When we arrived at Press lake Saturday the 4th around 12:30 and the temps were twenty some degrees lower than home, I knew we were going to have a great week, regardless how good the fishing was.  We  quickly got things unloaded and were in the boat by 3:00 in hopes of catching some fish for supper that night.  Our first afternoon was a bit slow as far as the bite but we made it back to camp by 5:00 to meet up with the rest of the crew and filled our bellies with fried Canadian walleyes that some of the better fishermen in our group had caught.
    As the week flew by the fishing got better and better.  My kids Darby, Daltyn, And Dru were all able to catch numerous walleye and pike.  My wife Anita caught the biggest pike of the week (33") on an ultralite rod and Daltyn boated the biggest Walleye (20-1/2").  I however landed the most fish of the family for the week including a pair of 19" walleyes and a 29" pike.  We had numerous "ones that got away" that were undoubtedly way bigger than anything we actually caught.  All in all we had a great family trip, ate more fish than we should have and made many new friendships as well as memories.  I feel fortunate to have a family that enjoys the outdoors enough to take this type of vacation.  I've been warned that next year my wife gets to decide where we go but I've got my fingers crossed that she makes the right decision.  For now it's time to concentrate on work, food plots and getting ready October 1st.  Good luck to all of you this fall and keep an eye on the journal. 
Dave Kramer