Archive for August, 2009

The Colorado Kid

Monday, August 31st, 2009

Jarrod "golfing around!"This handsome dude is my nephew Jarrod Ansel.  He’s one of those fortunate ones who lives in Colorado, and was home (Monroe) for his 25th. year class reunion.  He don’t look old enough for that does he?

That’s not sweat on my T-shirt, as we got caught in a cloudburst on the 18 th. hole.  Jarrod had a life threatening heart attack about 7 years ago, and lost about 1/3 of his heart.  When he moved to Colorado he found a group of Dr. that specialize in his kind of heart problems.  He had major surgery over a year ago, and he’s doing great.  Not great enough to beat his Uncle Mike at golf, but great just the same!  It was my pleasure to put a “whuppin” on him and his dad Randy a few weeks ago.

Jarrod told me he had been seeing some monster mule deer close to his home, south of Denver, around Castle Rock.  Jarrod is not a hunter, but he can make a dirt bike talk, and is one heck of a mechanic.  He said the deer had felt on their horns, and I wondered if that’s where they get the “stuff” for pool tables.  Anyway it was sure good to see my nephew and his lovely family doing so well.  Tie me down a big mule deer Jarrod, and I’ll come out visit.

Mike

My Helpers “Bearly!”

Friday, August 28th, 2009

bear sweetsThese two little “Munchkins” are Ava and Addysin two of my grand-daughters.  That’s daughter number five (Courtney) their mother.  My wife and I watch these sweeties a couple days a week, and it just so happened I had a Hostess “bear bait” pickup full of goodies, that needed to be unwrapped!  The girls were more than willing to dive in and help Papa with this tedious task.  Since they both have severe allergies they could not actually help unwrap, but their mother could!  I conned them into helping for about an hour, then I was on my own.  It took me 4 hours to finally empty out my truck, and I don’t want to see another twinkie for at least two weeks.  Twinkies come in a box of 10, and each has to be individually unwrapped.  I had one hundred boxes, which translates into 1000 twinkies to open.  My back was killing me when I got through.  If nothing else those bear are going to eat good.

My brother Darryl and his friend Randy Redmond just got back from there 1-1/2 day bear baiting trip.  That is simply one huge “butt kicker” no matter how you look at it!  They drove over a thousand miles all toll, and set five baits for our hunt in a few weeks.  Darryl said each spot looked good, and everyone is quite excited to spend some time at Baldwins bear camp.

Mike

Master Deceiver “The Humane Society of the United States!”

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

In May of this year the U.S. Sportsman’s Alliance came out with an alert concerning the Humane Society of ther United States. (HSUS)  This organization purposely deceives donors into believing that it cares for the welfare of pets (cats, dogs, etc)  In fact they are the largest animal rights/anti hunting group in the United States.

HSUS raises between $65-100 million a year, and has millions of dollars in assets, which goes toward financing a  continuous barrage of political campaigns and lobbying to stop hunting and trapping.  Only 1.8% of  HUUS expenditures goes toward caring for lost or abandoned pets.  Partnering with this radical anti-hunting group is Fund for animals, The International Fund for Animal Welfare, and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.  The top managers for HSUS make in excess of $200,000 per year, and most have been radical anti-hunting activist all their lives.  Many current leaders came from groups like People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), The Fund for Animals, Animal Liberation Front, and other organizations.

Many good people that donate to this organization (including hunters) do not have a clue concerning the anti-hunting agenda of this group.  Merritt Clifton (publisher of “Animal People”) criticised HSUS for it’s deceitful fundraising tactics.  He stated “The most misleading appeals that Animal People see, on a regular basis, are those which misrepresent the sender.  Over time such appeals can create an image for an organization which is sharply at odds with what it actually does.”  The Humane society of the U.S. , for instance, is not and never has been the collective voice for all, most, or any other humane societies.  Neither does it shelter animals, adopt out animals, neuter animals, or share funding with local humane societies.  In fact HSUS is an advocacy organization representing just itself!”

Wayne Pacelle, HSUS vice-president of campaigns, has admitted that the groups goal is to ban all hunting.  He stated “We are going to use the ballot box and the democratic process to stop hunting in the United States.  We will take it species by species until all hunting is stopped in California.  Then we will take it state by state.”

I could go on and on about this subject, but anyone can inform themselves on the Internet.  The intent here is to stop unknowing hunters, trappers, and fishermen from “cutting their own throats!”  Be aware of just which organizations are worthy of your trust, and who do what they say and say what they do!  Please pass on this information to all who need the knowledge.

Mike

The Two Faces of the Humane Society

Sunday, August 23rd, 2009

How many hunters and outdoors people own, and love their pets?  I’m willing to bet that a vast multitude, from our ranks, are bonafide pet lovers.  Recently I received an e-mail from my nephews wife Mary Ansel.  She was telling me about how she and her daughter Francesca had started to do volunteer work at the Humane Society of Monroe.  Mary is a huntress.  She downed her first (huge) gobbler last season, and is hooked on the sights, sounds, and adventure of the woods.  She stated “I always loved animals, and I would live on a farm if I could.”  “Since we don’t have a yard big enough we don’t have a dog, so we decided to help with dogs that don’t have a home.”

She also said “The Monroe Humane Society is, from what I have seen, a humane place with people who do the best, with what they have to work with.”  Of course in the tough economic times, most local shelters are hurting for funds, and volunteers are welcomed with open arms.  Mary let me know that our local shelter gets no money from any other source, outside local donations, as is the case with most small town Humane Societies.  These local Humane Societies are in no way related to the Humane Society of the United States, which is the most powerful, and well funded anti-hunting group in the United States.  Many outdoors people, including well intentioned hunters, have donated money to HSUS under false pretenses.  If you are one that has been duped, by the misleading claims of the Human Society of the United States, you have been seriously undermining your right to hunt and fish.

I am currently trying to get information that I can pass along to my readers, as this is a serious concern within the hunting and fishing community.  More to come.

Mike

Getting Ready for Bear Season 2009

Friday, August 21st, 2009

Darryls huge bearIt’s that time of the year again, and I can’t wait to get back to bear camp!  This is brother Darryl with his No. 2 Michigan recurve bow kill.  The “ole” 50# Bear bow did it’s job, but perfect arrow placement delivered the “message!”

Darryl is headed up in a couple days to set out 5-6 baits with his buddy Randy Redmond.  We’ll see if their still friends when they get home!  They are going to set baits during a 2-1/2 day period, and it is a shear “butt kicker!”  I don’t know if Randy knows what he volunteered for.  Just the 16 hour round trip drive is enough to wear you down.

We’ve been collecting bait for weeks, and have several hundred pounds of meat scraps.  We also have sweets, bread, syrup, and lots of grease.  I have a concoction of shelled corn, grain, and sunflower seeds topped off with honey from son-in-law Tony’s bee hives.  We don’t use the good honey, as there are some things you just don’t feed a “varmint!”  There is enough residue from the processed honey to make a mighty tasty mixture.  We are also stopping at a bear baiting outfit to buy a 55 gallon drum of blueberry pie filling, and several boxes of sweets.  Bear hunters are a different breed, as more often than not you are outwitted by Mr. Blacky.  It really doesn’t matter as bear camp has its own allure, it’s own “magic” if you will.  I have memories that will last a lifetime from my days in bear camp.

Thank you Dick, Gary, and Greg Baldwin for sharing your campfire with the Ansels. Our friendship has been forged over the last 35 years of  adventure, work, and camaraderie, with a little B.S. thrown in for good measure.  I guess the proper name would be camp stories!  I’ll keep you readers posted on this years adventure.

Mike

Boys Will be Boys

Monday, August 17th, 2009

PhotobucketThis is my son Micah who is obviously a bad influence on my grandson Quinn.   I don’t think they are supposed to be posing for pictures in this “restricted” area.  It’s a good thing they waited till their mothers were out of sight.  A mans heart is filled with adventure, and sometimes he just needs to do something daring, and a bit dangerous.  Where would we all be if Columbus, and Magellan’s mothers wouldn’t let them out of their sight?  If I was more agile I would of been right down there with these two explorers.

This isn’t the only time these two got off the beaten path.  At one of the waterfalls they had the women going “bonkers!”  They went over the edge, and into the canyon bottom.  About a 150 foot decent right where the waterfalls cascades into a gorgeous pool.  Mist was spraying in the air, and a nice little set of rapids rushed out toward Lake superior.  As they snapped one another’s picture the girls couldn’t even look.  The guys thought it was “cool” as their appetite for “wonder whats on the other side of that mountain” was somewhat satisfied!   I told the women to “lighten up” a bit, which got me a lecture on medical bills, funerals, and foolishness!   Well I see it as “boys being boys” and dog gone it I don’t want to “stay in the back yard!”

Mike

Obama’s Animal Rights Appointee

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

All concerned hunters need to read this message, and get the word out any way they can.  My nephew Derek, who is one of the store managers here at the Dundee Cabala’s, received information from the “Legislative Action Center” concerning the confirmation of Cass Sunstein as President Obama’s head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA.)

This position has oversight of regulations including those that impact hunting.  Sunstein has stated that hunting should be banned, if it’s only value is that of recreation!   He also is on record for openly advocating that animals have a right to sue in a court of law.  Mr. Sunstein would be a dangerous choice as “regulation czar” , because he would have the ability to intervene in decisions regarding our right to hunt, fish, and trap.

For that reason, sportsmen and women need to contact their U.S. Senators and ask that they oppose this confirmation.

Rob Sexton, Vice President for Government Affairs for the U.S. Sportsman’s Alliance states “This may be a long shot, but we can’t just lie down and let the Senate give a free pass to a person who could do real damage to our hunting heritage.”  The Senate is in recess through the month of August, and Senators should be in their home districts.  This is a good time to contact them before the expected confirmation vote next month.

This administration already has Attorney General Eric Holder, (gun control champion) Depart. of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, (Iowa dove hunting veto) and Lisa Jackson, head of the Environmental Protection Agency, who worked overtime to ban bear hunting in New Jersey.  Do we need another “enemy” in the White House?

Don’t count on the next guy to call his Senator.  You do it!  Get the word out!  Blog about it, talk about it with anyone who’ll listen, but don’t sit on your hands.  Obama promised change, and he has kept his word.  It’s not the kind of changes I like , and I don’t feel like I’m truly being REPRESENTED in Washington.  I feel it may be time to THROW all the BUMS out.  Government is supposed to be “By the people, of the people, and for the people,”  Washington has seemed to forget that they work for us.  Boy don’t get me going on my soapbox!

Get the word out – this is important!

Mike

More Vacation High-lights

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009

PhotobucketTalk about “in your face!”  Grandson Jacob caught this nice bullhead the morning we were leaving for home.  I told him to lift it higher so I could get a good picture of it.  He lifted it alright!  He smacked me along side my head, and I never heard that little guy laugh so hard.  I got some fish “goo” on my shirt, but other than that, I had to laugh along with everyone else.PhotobucketThis is one of the “water-wolves” that Tony caught.  Notice there is a leader sticking out of his mouth.  This pike broke my line the evening before, and still had my hook, steel leader, and 2 foot of line in his mouth when he attacked Tony’s offering!   Pike can take a licking, and come back for more.  They are at the top of the food chain in this particular lake.  I remember several years ago fishing in Ford Lake (Blaney Park) where we found a dead 40 inch Northern with a 28 incher in his mouth.  He got a little greedy and both fish ended up in “fish paradise!”  I only caught two pike, but neither had any size to speak of.  Tony was the “big pike” champion of this trip.PhotobucketSon Micah with a few brook trout we took from one of the many beaver ponds in the area.  There were several 11-12 inchers in the group, and that is a nice eating size brookie.  I have them in my freezer , but they are not going to languish there for very long.  My wife enjoys our brook trout dinners immensely, so I’ll wait till she’s back from Chicago, and we’ll enjoy them together.  We’re talking about doing good old fashioned “fish and chips” with a nice fresh garden salad.  Can’t wait!

Mike

Upper Peninsula Scenery

Saturday, August 8th, 2009

PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketJust a few pictures of the fabulous scenery from around the Munising area.  The first one is from a bluff overlooking the Eastern edge of Presque Isle just north of downtown Marquette.  This is a very unique place to visit.  You can drive your care around the peninsula, or hike on one of the many trails.  It juts out into Lake Superior, and as you can see the water has various shades of greens and blues.  The little peninsula has quite a population of deer living on it, and in fact they have been trapped and transferred away from the park.  At one time there were several resident albino’s in the herd, but I’m not sure of their status at this time.  If your ever in the area by all means stop and take a drive, or hike, through this little jewel of a park.

The next picture is of one of the sunsets we enjoyed while sitting on the lakeside cabin porch.  We were treated to a dazzling display of nature every evening.  This is art in it’s highest form, created for our pleasure and enjoyment.  How thoughtful is that?

The last picture is looking toward the shoreline of the Pictured Rocks National Lake shore.  It’s hard to see but Rainbow Cave is on the left side of the rocky formation.  You can take a 3 hour cruise and see all the 37 miles of various sites you can’t see in any other way.  The cruise is somewhat pricey ($33.00 ea.) but worth it if you really want to see all this unique coastline has to offer.  There is another cruise, in a glass bottom boat, where you can view shipwrecks along the Munising harbor and Lake Superior coast.  We never checked into the price, but it sounds interesting.  Alot to do and not enough time, or money, to do everything!

Mike

Sunset Cove

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

PhotobucketThe first four days of our Munising vacation we had our daughter Mindy and her three kids with us.  Our family is so big we had to split up our visitors so we could truly enjoy one another’s company.  Nadia, Keegan and McKenzie are  city kids, but they took to the U.P. like ducks to water.  We had a great time visiting the falls, swimming in cold Lake Superior, fishing, and playing board games.  The picture is of Nadia and Keegan enjoying the sunset from the pontoon boat.  Every evening we were treated to a different, and spectacular vista, as the sun faded with the turning of the earth.  Our friends Gary and Nancy named this place “Sunset Cove” and it certainly is!

The grandkids caught perch, sunfish, and bullheads off this dock, much to there delight.  We had a canoe, paddle boat, and the pontoon boat for water enjoyment, and used the beach (Sand Point) in Munising for swimming and laying in the sun.  The kids got to see a doe with two fawns, and several flocks of turkeys.  I was surprised that the birds were expanding their territory that far north.  This area is in part of the Upper Peninsulas “snow belt” and most of the deer don’t even stick around for the winter.  They migrate south into various yarding areas due to the depth of snow.  Evidently the turkeys can cope with tons of the white stuff.

When it came time for Mindy and her brood to leave, no-one wanted to go back home.  They were really having fun, and that’s what vacations are all about.

Mike