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In The Outdoors

True spirit of July 4 embraced in Gunlock

Perhaps I am a little old school, but I just can’t pass up the opportunity Independence Day provides to revel in the freedoms handed down to us from previous generations, to express gratitude to those who laid the foundations of a free nation, and to give thanks to those who have honorably served to protect that freedom.

Big game hunters get second chance in Nevada

If you came up empty in Nevada’s 2014 big game tag draw, don’t give up just yet. There are a handful of unsubscribed tags still available in the second draw. They might not be in your favorite area, but the tags do represent an opportunity to hunt something somewhere.

Lake Mead striper session puts fish back on my hook

According to the thermometer on the instrument panel, the temperature was already nearing the mid-80s when Roger drove the truck down the launch ramp at Temple Bar Marina at Lake Mead’s upper end. Since it was still quite early — just after 5 a.m. — that could mean only one thing. It was going to be a hot day. We could only hope the fishing action would follow suit.

Getting away from it all — with everyone else

With the arrival of Memorial Day weekend two things are certain. First, Las Vegans will flee the city by the thousands in search of open space and a chance to get away from the rest of us. Second, thousands of visitors from surrounding states will be looking to do the same thing.

Don’t tackle fly-fishing without Woolly Bugger

While visiting my brother years ago, my family and I went fishing in a small lake located just down the hill from his home. The lake, kind of an overflow area adjacent to the Colorado River, is known to hold rainbow trout. Nothing big, just planters from a local hatchery, but I looked forward to catching a few fish nonetheless.

Hunters vote to be social, to be outdoors

When the Nevada State Board of Wildlife Commissioners meets this weekend in Reno, it will have a full agenda to contend with, including big-game tag quotas for the 2014 hunting seasons and a possible change in the regulation defining legal black powder substitutes for use when hunting with muzzle-loading firearms.

Anglers get a reprieve from closing of Willow Beach hatchery

When news broke in December that the Willow Beach National Fish Hatchery no longer would raise and stock rainbow trout along the lower Colorado River, it sent a shock wave through the recreational fishing communities in Southern Nevada and northwestern Arizona. Anglers experienced disbelief and feelings of betrayal, and community leaders voiced concern about the financial impact on local economies.

Fisherman as artist and scientific researcher

There is something exciting about slipping up to the edge of a small mountain stream with a fishing rod in your hand, especially if the stream is one you have never fished before. It is like a blank canvas to an artist who has yet to determine where to begin working with his first brush stroke.

Big catch gives fish story happier ending

There is no shortage of tall tales on the bookshelves of fishing lore. Perhaps the most common are stories about the ones that got away, and they are probably the most frequently updated. Not far behind are big-fish stories followed by tales of precious time spent with special people, but among my favorites are those that combine reality with humor to create a picture of the near miraculous.

Model of conservation a marvel of success

One of the greatest stories rarely told is the one that details the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation, which according to the Association of Fish &Wildlife Agencies “is the world’s most successful system of policies and laws to restore and safeguard fish and wildlife and their habitats through sound science and active management.”

State bans gathering shed antlers early in year

During its meeting Saturday in Reno, the Nevada State Board of Wildlife commissioners voted to regulate the gathering of shed antlers by commercial and recreational shed hunters, a first for the state. Though the board chose not to make possession of a hunting license mandatory for shed hunters, it did vote unanimously to prohibit the gathering of shed antlers from Jan. 1 through April 15.

Big game application regulations available early at NDOW website

If you have been waiting to peruse the pages of Nevada’s 2014 Big Game Seasons and Application Regulations, your wait is over. Though the printed version isn’t expected to hit shelves until early next week, the online version is already available. And whatever you do, don’t pass up the Important Information page.

Fishing for gizzard shad would prove daunting

While talking with a couple of Lake Mead fishermen recently, the subject turned to gizzard shad. Since they showed up in Lake Mead in 2007, gizzards have displaced threadfin shad as both the primary forage fish in the lake and the live bait of choice for many anglers. But what if the quick-darting baitfish could be more than just another source of bass food?

Downriggers help anglers who go deep

A few years ago, I had the opportunity to fish for walleye and sauger at Lake of the Woods, a rather large body of water located where Minnesota and Canada come together. While there, I learned just how tasty walleye and sauger can be and had my first introduction to the use of downriggers.

UPS delivery can improve any sportsman’s day

If America’s sportsmen and women had to identify the people in their life who can turn an otherwise bad day into a good one, I think the one person who could and probably should show up on every outdoor enthusiast’s list is the UPS driver.

Closing of Willow Beach hatchery hurts businesses

In December 2013, anglers who fish along the lower Colorado River system were surprised to learn the U.S. Fish &Wildlife Service had decided to halt the rearing of rainbow trout at the Willow Beach National Fish Hatchery.

Separating truth from fiction about antlers

Whether you read an article about big game hunting in an outdoor magazine, watch a deer or elk hunting video on the Internet, or share stories about hunting while sitting around a fall campfire, at some point the discussion will focus on antlers. Personally, I prefer the antler stories told around the campfire, but you always need to keep in mind that antlers are like the fish that got away: They grow a little bigger each time their story is told.

Emergency notification device essential

Do something long enough and sooner or later you will find yourself on the bad end of an unplanned situation. Proof of that can be seen in the missing digits, or parts thereof, on the hands of your friends or acquaintances who spend a lifetime working with power saws and lumber. All it takes is one small mistake, a simple miscalculation or a momentary lapse of judgment and your circumstance can be changed dramatically.

Advances made in turkey ammo

One of the biggest thrills I have experienced in the outdoors is being at my daughter’s side when she bagged one of Nevada’s wild turkeys. Calli shot the gobbler as he walked out from behind a juniper tree where he had been strutting his stuff for the ladies. When he stepped into the open, the turkey was busy looking for the hen that was squawking sweet nothings. The hen turned out to be a box call.

Boulder City gun club offers media early look at new products

In case you missed it, the annual Shooting Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show is underway at the Sands Expo and Convention Center. Owned by the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the SHOT Show draws manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers, conservation organizations and members of the outdoor media from around the world.