Ever since Federal started up its manufacturing efforts in 1922, shotshells were always its’ bread and butter. Then during its 100-year lifespan, Federal eventually, and meticulously, developed a shotshell for every situation and activity.
"At the Saskatchewan Goose Company, we want to ensure that our guests have the best hunting experience possible, and we do everything we can to ensure this happens. Obviously, we can't control the weather or birds, but what separates us from the other guys is the amount of work my family and workers put into making this a trip of a lifetime."
This past year we spent a week in Montana and Wyoming and the temperatures were brutal. We field hunted and we hunted on a riverbank in -10 Degrees. The first key is for you, your friends, and the dog to stay warm so you make it through the hunt with no issues...
Home to Oregon for the company’s entire existence and making scopes for over 100 years you can say Leupold has a pretty good track record. They put all their products through rigorous testing before it hits the shelves. If your scope or binoculars can take the beating, they put it through at the testing facility you can be sure it will take whatever you can throw at it in the woods. If you have ever taken the tour of the facility, you know what I am talking about. If you have not, I can assure you that they take their quality very serious. Their Lifetime guarantee on products says it all! Scouting is key in waterfowl and a key tool you must have a good pair of binoculars or two. I have a pair always in the truck and one in my blind bag. My personal choice is 10 x 42. Good field of view, great glass and durable.
Watching ducks and geese pile into a mile-long field for over four hours was incomprehensible. Even if tried, there was no way to count the sheer number of birds in the field. A hunt the next day brought wave after wave of birds wanting back to their favorite feeding spot. It was awe-inspiring and one of the reasons Saskatchewan is a "bucket list" destination for most waterfowlers.
The addiction of hunting cacklers continues to escalate throughout the flyways they inhabit but getting on these large flocks of small geese isn’t as simple as it may seem. Convincing a flock of 5,000-plus geese to land in your decoys can be the biggest challenge, for if you fail to setup on the X — the spot they’ve been feeding on — all your efforts may be thwarted.
If you have never been to Canada to chase waterfowl or if you have never spent more than a week or so, their season changes quickly. The U.S. waterfowl seasons are long and at points drag on a little as we hit slow spurts but in Saskatchewan like most of the Northern Provinces each week there is equivalent to two weeks down here. It is like figuring out how old your dog is in 1 of our human year’s vs 7 in dog years. So much happens in 8 weeks that is almost like having 4 months of the migration down in the lower forty-eight. Seasons usually run September 1 until the end of October if the weather and birds don’t get pushed out by snow and frigid temperatures.
Lessers, lessors, little geese, smaller Canadas, whatever you want to call them, go right ahead. Some hunters call them things we can’t print in this article, simply because they get the best of them in the field. My friend Brad in Alberta has a special name for them, he calls them Arctic birds. I had not heard of that before but it has a great ring to it and has always stuck in my mind. The only thing I want to make sure is that you don’t call them Cacklers. That makes me and every other goose hunter in the I-5 corridor in Oregon and Washington cringe. Those birds are a totally different subspecies of Canada goose than the Lesser. Heck there are 7 subspecies if you did not know, (cheat sheet included).
I had my decoy trailer in tow. It was time to scout for waterfowl and find the winning spot… And ask permission. Hunting sure comes with its hurdles.
Like any migratory gamebird, wanton waste, which means to intentionally waste, neglect, or use inappropriately, comes into play. The job of cleaning hundreds of birds can be daunting, but a production line of hunters can make short work of a mountain of snow goose meat. Few people pluck snows, and the birds are typically breasted. The legs and thighs are some of the best eating, so make sure to include them in the processing line. Hundreds of pounds of meat can accumulate, and here is the best way to process and prepare snows.
Here’s a secret weapon that doesn’t involve buying any gadgets. Most of us know this but feel powerless to do anything about. I mean, if our scheduled Saturday hunt coincides with 80 degrees and no breeze, what are we going to do? Well, how about rearranging our lives to be more flexible? Trade your boss a Saturday off for a Thursday or Friday.