Claim the privilege of hunting according to the dictates of your own conscience, and allow all hunters the same privilege;
let them practice how, where, or what they may.








Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Idaho Wolves and F&S Blog

© 2010 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.

Ok, I occasionally go to the Field & Streams blogs. I like posting there now and again and touching base with a lot of folks I don't normally communicate with.

The one thing that bugs the living daylights out of me is the amount of SPAM comments on the blog. I mean really, will nobody moderate them nightly?

Well I guess all the complaints finally got someone to do something. Of course it was overboard. So now whenever I try to post a link to something related, or my blog's link, it kicks me out, the SPAM filter will not allow the post to be published. What a PITA! Guys, you're a big corporation, that's what you get interns for. They physically go through the blogs and clean them up! Jeez...

Now to the meat and potatos.

Seems like some Idaho Sheriff is telling folks that It's OK to break the law and shoot wolves. He says he's not.

From this story in the Spokesman-Review:
A northern Idaho sheriff said he is not advocating the illegal shooting of federally protected wolves by offering a hunting rifle and a shovel as the prize in a raffle called “.308 SSS Wolf Pack Raffle” in a region where SSS commonly stands for “shoot, shovel and shut up.” Idaho County Sheriff Doug Giddings said the SSS in the raffle stands for “safety, security and survival.” “We knew that this would stir up some interest,” Giddings told the Lewiston Tribune.

Seriously.

I believe him like I believe in the tooth fairy.

And of course there was the usual diatribe against the Federal Government, the US Fish and Wildlife, the New World Order, and asorted and sundry other things. Almost sounded like a fringe element of the Tea Party had gathered in one place. One fellow tongue in cheek (maybe...) said we ought to let some wolves loose in Central Park, while another wondered why common birds in one place couldn't be shot at, after all there are a lot of them here! So I had to respond:

How many of you are wildlife biologists?

Just saying...

But this smacks of two things.... ok several.

1) Laws are laws. If we pick and choose which ones we will follow, then we are essentially lawless. I believe Socrates spoke at length on the subject as did Benjamin Franklin.

2) Sometimes, and I mean sometimes, we as a people need to see the bigger picture. That's were a Federal Gov't comes into play. Yes, the rancher in Idaho may not like wolves eating his livestock, but the wildlife manager sees a halt to CCD. So which is more important?

Releasing (hungry) wolves in Central Park, while amusing and certainly something I would enjoy, would not change the equation. Wild menacing wolves howling at night and striking fear into grown mens' hearts, eating poodles, cats, homeless people, and the occasional child does not constitute an issue over livelyhood. It's just a animal niusance issue. Still it would be entertaining.

The Spaniards use the Spanish Mastif to protect their flocks and herds. Very effective. But I doubt many American ranchers want to go through the trouble of following their herds around and penning them up nightly. All together too much trouble for the subsidized industry now isn't it. Much easier to minimize threats and leave it at that. It would be too expensive to spend his or her valuable time out there. What! You can't pass the cost to the consumer?

Now how much is that Dollar Whopper again? Should it really only be a dollar?

And one more thing, just because something is plentiful here, doesn't necessarily make it so way over there! If we as sportsmen, can't even be trusted to clean out the bilges of our boats to stop the spread of invasive species, how can you be trusted to decide what should or shouldn't be hunted? Seriously.

Now I would like to hear some common sense approaches to this.

Best Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Shindand Tent Club
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...



The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles

The Range Reviews: Recreating the 18th Century Powder Horn

© 2010 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.

The Range Reviews



After watching me struggle, cuss, and hack my way through two powder horn projects, niether of which is really complete, and fill up my little corner of the living room with sawdust and horn detritus, my wife went and ordered  Recreating the 18th Century Powder Horn by Scott and Cathy Sibley.

I am eagerly anticipating going home next year and reading my new gift! In the mean time, I have to ensconse myself at my desk here in Afghanistan, and be satisfied to look at scans my wife has been sending me.

I was immediately taken by the clear photos and detailed instructions that made it easy to understand what and how to do any number different steps in the creation of an art quality powder horn. And not just one type mind you, but several different types.

The authors, Scott and Cathy Sibley are well known powder horn makers and scrimshaw artists. I Googled them up and found a variety of references to their work, especially at Contemporary Makers. Contemporary Makers is a blog that covers the contemporary artists in period gun work, including accouterments; well worth the visit!

Scott is both a retired soldier, and a retired teacher. Cathy is retired school administrator. They got started making powder horns and quill-work while teaching school in the outer most reaches of Alaska.

I have been diligently working on a powderhorn for one of my friends, and I am very anxious to complete it on my next R&R. I have already picked up quite a few hints and new ideas from the excellent explanations in the book. The clear and well posed pictures make it easy to understand, and the Sibley's skill is obvious. The photography deseves a mention of its own; the quality and clarity is superb!



The book is divided into 21 chapters. It starts off in logical fashion with "Tools and Materials," followed by "Selecting a Horn." Thereafter it explains how you should set up your work area, (Believe me, nothing like mine!) and then starts from the begining in a logical and step by step horn making manner. The photography complements the descriptions very well, and options are presented for different time periods or styles

 Just to be clear, I don't work in any recognized style, period, or era. Shoot, until I started reading about 17th and 18th century blackpowder stuff, I didn't even realize there were different eras! Now I know better...





The scrimshawing section of the book is very well illustrated and explained. My next attempt at scratching away on a powder horn should be more successful than not! Selecting the proper tools for your project and clear, step-by-step directions are given. Something I appreciated was the scrimshaw patterns at the back of the book. It gives you some idea of where you might want to go with your scrimshaw.



The last two chapters have examples of original horns, followed by horns made by Contemporary Makers. It is an excellent reference to guide you to those styles and eras I mentioned earlier!




I have found powder horn making to be a rewarding combination of crafts. Not only are you working with horn, but you will pick out and work with wood, and possibly do some metal shaping should the mood strike you, to complete your horn.There are techniques discussed for using dyes or stains, many types of carving are covered, along with filing and shaping tools. The end result of the mess you are going to make, is a beautiful powder horn for your collection that will merit both artistic and practical praise.

For those of you looking for an entertaining and productive pasttime, maybe an activity to take your mind off of something, working with your hands to make a powder horn will be very rewarding. You will find  Recreating the 18th Century Powder Horn is an incredible reference for the budding horn maker. I would recommend it without reservation!


Recreating the 18th Century Powder Horn

Softcover, $19.95

91 pages, 11" x 8-1/2"

ISBN 0-9765797-0-7

Best Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Shindand Tent Club
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...


Albert Rasch,HunterThough he spends most of his time writing and keeping the world safe for democracy, Albert was actually a student of biology. Really. But after a stint as a lab tech performing repetitious and mind-numbing processes that a trained capuchin monkey could do better, he never returned to the field. Rather he became a bartender. As he once said, "Hell, I was feeding mice all sorts of concoctions. At the club I did the same thing; except I got paid a lot better, and the rats where bigger." He has followed the science of QDM for many years, and fancies himself an aficionado. If you have any questions, or just want to get more information, reach him via TheRaschOutdoorChronicles(at)MSN(dot)com.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Hunting Shows: If They Suck, Why are They On?

© 2010 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.

"Personally, I think the majority of hunting shows stink."
Albert A Rasch

I started to write a post on the very subject some time ago, but it was such a diatribe against "Horn Porn", rich people buying trophies, and celebrities numbskulls, that I finally deleted it. As far as I could discern, there was niether artistic nor educational merit in any of the shows. I couldn't get past the gratuitous "Kill Shot," and the overbearing and abundant use of "Pseudo-Redneck" language employed by the majority of the participants.

Galen Geer of The Thinking Hunter, has put together a well thought out and researched post on the very subject questioning among other things, the ethics being taught by the medium.

"...frustrated by the constant butchery of verb tense and number by the “stars.” Her displeasure is nothing new from people who care about language. This is the foundation of most arguments against outdoor television, and a second argument is that the programs are unrealistic. To one degree or another, the claim can be made that we turn a blind eye to both problems and grudgingly admit that the problems are endemic to the medium and not going away."

Responsibility in Outdoor Media asks for some input from us, the outdoor blogging community. Does the Sportsman Channel, Vrs, ESPN, and other media outlets have some responsibility to the rest of society to portray ethical and appropriate behaviors?

Mr Geer would like to explore the following: "I am curious, however, what you think. For myself, I see an element of a growing problem with many new members of the outdoor media whose lack of a formal education in media law, ethics, practical journalism and creative writing/film/broadcasting, is contributing to increasing misinformation about hunting and fishing by many non-hunters/anglers."

Best Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Shindand Tent Club
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...