Outdoors in Maine

  • Bears: Taking the Offensive

    Now that we have been successful for the second time in defeating the bear referendum, we can go about our business. Our opposition, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), has gotten the message and will move on to more fertile soil. Right? Wrong on both counts. We cannot afford to let down our

  • Gift ideas for sportsmen

    Sportsmen love their toys. Of course, they prefer to consider these toys as indispensable tools for the outdoors. Sometimes the best gift one can give an outdoorsman is a tool or device that he might not either think to buy for himself or feel comfortable buying. For example, my mother-in-law always had an uncanny knack

  • Deer season’s early returns

    The November deer season has come and gone. Hard to believe. Those still waiting to fill the freezer have a week to two weeks to close the deal (depending upon which wildlife management area you choose to hunt). What kind of a deer season was it? The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife customarily

  • A feast for the wolves

    You would think that I would learn after a while. Big game can be hit hard with a high velocity bullet and leave no trace. When my wife, Diane, shot a cow moose a decade or more ago with a .35 Remington, the animal disappeared into a fir thicket. There was no indication on the

  • Bear politics: the aftermath

    Well, we can heave a sigh of relief. Maine bear hunting, as we know it, survived Round Two of another well-funded and well-organized assault from the anti-hunting factions of this country. Who is “we”? Bear guides and outfitters? Yes, they make up part of the “we.” But there is more to it. Much more. Although

  • Losing wounded deer

    Sooner or later in their hunting careers, most deer hunters will wound a deer and not recover it. It happens. The causes differ. A rushed shot. Buck fever. A gun with an inadequate caliber. A bullet’s impact or trajectory compromised by a tree limb. Often, particularly with inexperienced hunters, shots at a deer are taken

  • Maine deer season outlook

    Maine deer season outlook

    What’s the Maine deer season outlook? Pretty darn good, if you combine the statistics, the deer biologist’s forecast and the so-called “anecdotal evidence.” According to the harvest data and all of the buzz, there has been a definite rebound of deer numbers following the severe winters of 2008 and 2009. Kyle Ravana, Maine’s deer biologist,

  • Changing of the guard

    Changing of the guard

    Not unlike the old general store, the traditional Maine sporting goods store — to the hunter or angler — is a very special place. It’s where you go to trade a gun or find a new one, or have a scope mounted, or buy live bait for that ice fishing trip. Or you just might

  • Bears: wisdom from Missouri

    For months now, outdoor writers and sports organizations have penned a lot of compelling arguments against the bear referendum. It has been said that these efforts being made in a sporting publication or on the outdoor page of a newspaper are akin to “preaching to the choir.” That may be so. As one of those

  • Deflections

    Before I took up the bow, deer hunting was quite conventional. You layered up with long johns and wool clothing, grabbed the .30-30, some shells, a compass and then you spent a quiet — usually uneventful — day in the solitude of the Maine woods. Now, long before November, I hunt deer in September during