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302 North Rose Farm Road
Woodstock, IL, 60098
United States

(815)338-2919

Funny fishing shirts make a great fishing gift for men or women who love the outdoors. Great for Father's Day gifts, Birthdays, Anniversaries and the Holidays!

Fishing, Hunting and Outdoor Blog for Stories, Tips and Reviews

Fishing, Hunting and Outdoor Blog for Stories Tips and Reviews from Outdoor Men and Women.

 

Tactics For Hunting Locked-Down Bucks

Troy Thomas

In early November deer hunting, those just-out-of-bow-range bucks seem to be everywhere—and you just know you’re going to kill one as soon as you can carry a gun to your stand. Then dawn breaks on opening day of firearms season, and you can’t spot a rutting buck to save your life. 

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The Search for Giant Perch

Troy Thomas

Yellow perch hold a special place in the hearts of hardcore panfish anglers. Seasoned anglers can recount the precise details surrounding the capture of their biggest yellow perch from decades past as though it was yesterday. Others spin tales of the day they got into a mother lode of jumbos and filled a fish basket too heavy to lift.

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How to Buy a New Fly Rod on Any Budget

Troy Thomas

Walk into any fly shop from the Rockies to the Catskills and you’ll see a wall or two full of trout rods. Most shops carry a half-dozen brands at least, and the prices range from the bare-bones value of rods like the ECHO Base, all the way to the pricey G. Loomis Asquith. I’ve spent my entire life chasing trout in the American West, and I’d like to think I know a thing or two about “good” trout rods.

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When (and How) to Use a Bleat Call to Stop a Buck

Troy Thomas

Sometimes bleating to stop a moving deer can actually be disastrous, turning a makeable shot opportunity into a spooked buck bounding out of your life forever. Nobody is saying you should abandon the bleat call altogether, but you do need to learn to use it wisely.

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After the Shot. How to Keep the Meat Fresh

Troy Thomas

I love oversized antlers. And big bucks in general. All of that. But as I grow older, the most satisfaction I get from any hunt that comes in a tangible, touchable form is the meat. There is something about peering into my chest freezer and seeing dozens of pounds of meat that makes me feel like things are alright.  

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Vertical Fishing for Walleyes

Troy Thomas

Walleyes seem genetically programmed to react to rising and falling prey. One of the easiest meals for any predatory fish is crippled or dying baitfish. They often dart upward erratically, only to lose momentum and drift downward. This up-and-down movement draws attention. For this reason, vertical lure motion is fundamental to walleye fishing.

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Finding Walleyes

Troy Thomas

If there’s one thing you learn in over 30 years of walleye fishing, it’s that good spots are good spots, sometimes even independent of the season. Along the location trail, it’s common to uncover spots that look appealing on a lake map, but don’t attract walleyes because they lack baitfish, vegetation, or other critical habitat; or sometimes it’s as simple as the structure is in the wrong part of the lake; or it’s not exposed to the right current or wind. 

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Deer Hunting Mistakes Guaranteed to Ruin the Rut

Troy Thomas

The rut is the Super Bowl of whitetail hunting. Bucks that typically behave like ghosts are suddenly vulnerable, and your chances of tagging a wall-hanger are at their highest. But whitetails are still whitetails—always cautious and rarely pushovers. So there are plenty of ways you can go wrong. Here are ways you can turn the annual breeding season into a surefire flop.

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Muskie Fall Fishing Secrets

Troy Thomas

Few freshwater experiences rival the adrenaline rush you get when a monster muskie shadows your lure to the boat. But this addictive surge of epinephrine can make it hard to focus on the best course of action to convert follows into strikes and, more importantly, get the fish in the boat. 

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Late Season Means Bigger Fish in Smaller Water

Troy Thomas

Last year featured our first extended fly fishing seasons in Wisconsin. Early trout fly fishing season here opens on the first Saturday of January, and you can now fish through to the 15th of October. For many years, our season typically ended September 30th, but state fisheries biologists determined that our spawning trout would not be adversely effected by adding 15 days to season.

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Finding Balance Between Family and the Outdoors

Troy Thomas

Awhile back I read a blog post titled “Why You Should Get Out of Bed and Hike, Even if You’re an Exhausted Parent”, which was I realized only too quickly, was a click-bait title. It left a sour feeling I couldn’t shake, and I had to ask myself why – and it was a lot of thinking, days of it. And maybe I was a bit judgy, but I can live with that.

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It’s the Year For Big Michigan King Salmon and Here’s How to Catch Them

Troy Thomas

Every fall, Lake Michigan king salmon flood the rivers and streams of connecting bodies of water for their annual fall run. A few years ago, it was one of the worst runs in history. However, after a few warmer winters, an abundance of baitfish have created a perfect storm of fishing.

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