Giant Goose Ranch


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Recent entries


Through the Lens

The Chief and His Geese

Mon, January 24, 2011

Chief AJ - Always thankful for any bounty that nature provides him

Chief AJ of the HFX Slingshot fame, visited with us at Silver Creek Hunt Club recently. Chief’s goal was to get some geese in the bag and guide Adam Rutkowski along with club manager Scott Huschle didn’t let Chief AJ down.

It was one of those mornings when things just work – Chief wasn’t able to use his slingshot, as regs don’t permit slingshot hunting of waterfowl, but Chief proved he’s just as proficient with a shotgun as he is with a sling shot and bagged his limit of two quickly and easily that cold, cloudy, blustery morning.

Chief shared with me that this was only the second time he’d been waterfowl hunting, and credited Rutkowski and Huschle with making his morning a success.
“ I sure had a good time listening to those two blow those calls. That Adam just brought them right down in on us!”

L-R Scott Huschle, Manager Silver Creek Hunt Club, Chief AJ, Adam Rutkowski, Guide, and Piper

Chief AJ also asked us how we manage the cold and harsh conditions day after day during waterfowl season – “I have to tell you – this waterfowl stuff is hard work, and it’s in brutal conditions. How do you guys do this day in and day out? Chop the ice, set the decoys, get those birds in, collect everything and pack it in when you’re done – there’s sure lots to do for this waterfowl hunting.”

I have to admit none of could really answer his question with a suitable answer other than – “We love it!”

Piper - with a goose that came close to being bigger than her

Chief also was amazed at little Hyper Piper, Rutkowski’s tiny lab who also serves as the house retriever at Silver Creek Hunt Club.
“Why that goose was bigger than that little girl.. and she just worked her heart out getting it in”  What Piper lacks in size, she makes up for with speed, agility, sheer drive, heart and willpower. We often joke at Silver Creek, if a wounded goose took flight, Piper who hovers at the 40 pound mark, would likely become airborne.

In exchange for a good mornings hunt the Chief treated us to a delicious lunch of antelope he had harvested earlier in the year with his HFX slingshot. While the Chief may never become a hard core waterfowler, he certainly has discovered the great joy that a good morning in the goose pit can provide.



Migration Madness?

Fri, January 21, 2011

Yes, That’s right, there’s a rumor I have a waterfowl problem. I know that I spent most of waterfowl season and the month or so after chasing and photographing birds from here to hades and back but I didn’t realize it was so bad until the other night at city council meeting…

Council member : Gretchen..I’ve been waiting a week for you call me back, I’ve left several messages….

Fellow member of the press: The only way she’ll call you back this time of year is if you tie goose feathers to your fanny and start flying…

Rut Oh…I think he’s right! But look at what I would have missed if I’d stayed put and sat at my desk and returned phone calls, emails and texts..or typed blog entries!

an eagle family meeting

I think they were plotting an attack on the mallards….

And then the snows.. all the snows…dumping into the hot tub…

And I might have missed this collar…

So for everyone who is waiting on a call back, an e mail, and a face to face… I’ll get to you soon.. well, maybe after the birds go home.






Let’s Go Fishing!

Sun, January 09, 2011

Our Fearless Leader Jeff and I finally got a chance to sit, visit,  and meet so many of our Heartland community readers and friends yesterday at the Let’s Go Fishing Show in Collinsville Saturday. These are just a few quick snaps and I’m heading back this morning to spend some more time getting caught up with industry folks and fellow anglers. There will be more photos coming, but for now it’s time to head back to the lovely Gateway Center and think about all the great fishing that’s just around the corner.

For some reason the thought “Frick and Frack visit the fishing show” popped in my head when I started transferring yesterday’s images and this one popped up . Thanks to my friend Jim Lindley of Fairview Heights for taking the time to stop and visit and to grab this shot for us!

How many times can you find “Heartland Outdoors” in this photo?

You know when Jeff and Walter Krause, one Southern Illinois finest Muskie experts and guides, get to visiting, there’s going be more than one fishing tale told!