Win a Henry Mountains Mule Deer Hunt from Huntin’ Fool

My friends at Huntin’ Fool are offering a chance at an awesome Mule Deer hunt on the Henry Mountains, a Red Rock Precision custom rifle and many other awesome hunts as part of their membership drive this year.  They sent this information to me that I wanted to pass along... wait, do I? I want to win. ;) I would love to hunt the Henry's for mule deer. Having a guide say this area or this area is where the bucks hang out would be nice but then I enjoy sleeping on the mountain and finding the bucks really my greatest enjoyment of any hunt whether I fill my tag or not. Not that there is anything wrong with having a guide, it's just not my preference. Anyhow, here's the info.

Henry Mountains Mule Deer Hunt

Huntin’ Fool is currently holding its 2014 Summer Membership Drive and we are excited to announce a giveaway like never before, and possibly never again. We have purchased the hunt of a lifetime and we are going to give it to one lucky member: A fully guided Henry Mountains mule deer hunt and a custom rifle.

Huntin Fool MagazinesThe winner of this once-in-a-lifetime hunt will be guided by North Rim Outfitters with the Huntin’ Fool team assisting. Along with the collective experience of North Rim Outfitters and the Huntin’ Fool team, the winner will also receive a Red Rock Precision custom rifle to help them take a trophy buck.

We are also giving away 15 other world-class hunts. Huntin’ Fool members can win a stone sheep hunt, multiple mule deer and elk hunts, a combination elk/deer/wolf/black bear hunt, and many others. These are fully paid for hunts with guaranteed tags, giving winners the opportunity to hunt trophy sized animals with our endorsed outfitters.

The Summer Membership Drive runs through July 31, 2014 and you must be a Huntin’ Fool member to enter. For more details about this unique opportunity to win a Henry Mountains hunt or any of our other prizes, or becoming a member of Huntin’ Fool, visit

About Huntin’ Fool: Huntin’ Fool is for every hunter. We provide services and products to our members to ensure access to the best hunts and tags, hunt data and statistics, and gear and outfitter reviews. Huntin’ Fool is a membership-based organization and was founded in 1996 to provide hunters with a highly valued content and support system to make their individual hunting objectives a reality.


Rodent Snatching Red-Tailed Hawk Caught on a Browning Spec Ops Trail Camera

During this winter I have set out my trail cameras in a creek bottom where mule deer and turkeys like to winter. In this setup I have a Browning Spec Ops trail camera watching the edge of a fence corner post where deer like to funnel around. I have many, many deer photos and videos from this location. As I was scrolling through the many deer photos from this camera from the past couple weeks I came across these photos of a Red-Tailed Hawk pouncing on a rodent, fly up to a fence post and then a Magpie comes in to scavenge below the hawk. The trail camera was set to take six rapid-fire photos. In this setting it starts taking photos about six tenths of a second after it is triggered and then it takes six photos rapidly in two seconds time. And I have the camera set to a five second delay before it can be triggered again.

In this series of photos the camera is triggered just before the hawk hits the ground. Then sometime five or more seconds later the hawk takes off triggering the camera again and it starts taking photos as it is flying up to the post. Finally a Magpie flies in triggering the camera and gets his picture taken six times.

Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent
Red-Tailed Hawk Pouncing on Rodent


Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera

Redtail Hawk getting a rodent on a Browning Spec Ops BTC-3 Trail Camera


Favorite Products at the 2014 Western Hunting and Conservation Expo

Big Game Mounts at the Western Hunting and Conservation Expo

Here's just a few of the many mounts that can be found at 2014 Western Hunting and Conservation Expo.

I had a little time between work and Dallen's High School basketball to check out some of the booths at the Western Hunting Conservation Expo this year. I decided to to donate $50 to put in for some of the hunting draws I would like most. The Desert Big Horn and Rocky Mountain Bighorn were no brainers. The Hunt Expo is most likely my only chance to draw one of them. By the time I have enough points to draw my once in a lifetime moose hopefully before I die, I think I will put in for a Mountain Goat and there's no way I'm living long enough to start on a third once in a lifetime big game animal.

Anyhow with the $50 for ten different hunts, $12 for parking, $10 to get in the show and my gas to drive down. It's worth it to have another chance to get a limited entry hunt in Utah.

As usual there are some pretty cool stuff at the show. The place is just packed with huge mule deer and elk mounts not to mention tons of sheep and other critters. I do like walking through the taxidermy judging section. I feel a lot better seeing realistic sized deer and elk in this section. Many of the mounts are of deer with antlers the size I might actually see in the areas I hunt. Now throughout the rest of the show the antlers just don't look real. I've hunted hard my whole life and never seen bucks or bulls anywhere near the size of most of them found in the show... wow!

Poison Arrow Bow Mounted Elk Decoy

Here is the Poison Arrow elk decoy collapsed on a bow.

Poison Arrow Bow Mounted Elk Decoy Deployed

Here Poison Arrow Gear's cow elk decoy deployed on the side of a bow. You can see how you can hide your draw behind the decoy.

Anyhow there where two products that caught my eye as I walked the show this year.

First was a lightweight decoy/blind that Poison Arrow is making that mounts to an arrow in your bow quiver. Being a solo DIY archery elk hunter I have many a time found it difficult to call in a bull within range without getting busted. My most successful technique is to ambush elk along a active trail or water hole. There are times when I am calling and I can see that carrying just a few more ounces of weight on my bow with one of Poison Arrow's cow elk decoys could help buy me some precious time to get the shot.

The decoy is a "flag" of material with a cow elk head printed on it. There is a small bungee chord that ties the decoy flag down by being wrapped through the nock of the arrow that the decoy is attached too. The decoy can be deployed in just a couple seconds. The decoy attached to the arrow can also quickly be removed from the quiver and attached to a tree or brush etc.

Most of the time I try to ambush the elk and would prefer not to have the decoy visible attracting attention to me however sometimes I do have to cow call to pull a bull within range and if I have a bull coming directly to my calls this decoy might just buy me the time to get the shot. I can also see that it would offer a great shield to block the view of me drawing my bow. I might have to get one of these before next archery elk season.

CamStrap Video camera head mount

Solvid's CamStrap video camera head mount and one of their hats with a slot in the side for the mount to come through.

Another product that looked pretty cool was a nice solid camera mount that straps around your head called a CamStrap from a company called Solvid. Unlike GoPro cameras and mounts this mount appears very strong and secure allowing for the use of variable zoom digital video camera. The footage they were showing of archery mule deer hunting and other hunting was pretty amazing. I was impressed.

I could see how this could get awesome footage of my archery hunts and I could see how it could be vary valuable to review the footage after a shot to see how well my shot placement was on an elk. A GoPro is cool but the footage is so wide angled that anything past a few yards looks very distant. This system can bring the action in much closer. This could be a lot of fun as long as I'm not fiddling with the camera when I should be focusing on taking the shot.

Now if I get one of these straps I'll have to get a camera to use with it, hmm....

For more information about the Western Hunting and Conservation Expo check out

Trail Camera Tips - A Few Things I've learned Using Them

In May of 2013 I got my first trail camera and I quickly had to have more. They have been so much fun seeing what is going on in the woods when I am not there. Here are a few of the things others might find helpful that I learned about using and setting up trail cameras this year.

Rayovac ultrapro aa alkaline batteries with a Browning Recon Force trail camera

My favorite batteries for my trail cameras, Rayovac UltraPro AAs. They are inexpensive on, they last well and they have been capturing video down to 19 degrees below zero. 

I have yet to swallow the pill and buy the expensive lithium batteries. I'm sure Lithium would be by far the best to use but they are just so very expensive and I have been really happy with a much less expensive battery. I have really liked the performance of the inexpensive Rayovac UltraPro AA alkaline batteries. I buy them in 48 bulk packs from Amazon.

I like to change out the batteries when they show near 50% on the management screen of my Browning trail cameras. I would guess that I get an average of around 700 videos that are 30 seconds long before the batteries drop near the 50% mark.

The reason I switch out the batteries at 50% is not that they won't keep taking photos and video. It is because of the possibility that it may take me a month before I get back in to check the cameras. A lot can happen in a month and I would hate for the cameras to miss any possible action. I do generally get around 6 weeks before they drop to 50% and I generally check my cameras every two weeks.

How cold is too cold for alkaline batteries?
I have found that with the Rayovac UltraPro batteries I can capture video with temperatures that are well below zero. All my online research showed that alkaline batteries were only good down to zero. I have captured many videos on all on my cameras in temperatures below zero. The coldest temperature so far has been some mule deer when it was 19 below.

Here's a few interesting video clips that show the cold temperatures where the Browning Trail Cameras have captured mule deer, coyotes and turkeys using Rayovac UltraPro alkaline batteries.

If you have bears in the area they will mess with your cameras. They will try to destroy your cameras. Bears are bad... but pretty exciting to get on camera. I'm thinking a electrically charged wired right next to the camera would do wonders at keeping them from messing up my cameras. So for next year I am looking into a small electric fence option for the bears.

SDHC Cards.
My favorite SDHC cards are a Sony 16 Gig Class 10 variety. Video can fill up card quick so I like the extra room of a 16 Gig card. The Sony Class 10 cards read extremely fast and run around $12 on Amazon. Their speed comes in handy when downloading the files to my computer. The Browning trail cameras don't require the class 10 but I sure enjoy how fast copying the files to my computer is.

Mounting to trees.
You have found the perfect location to watch game with a trail camera but there aren't any perfect trees to strap a camera to. Often this is the case. Finding a solid straight tree in the right spot to watch a muddy spring may not be possible. I have found that Browning Tree mounts are just the tool to mount trail cameras to just about any tree and then once you have it on the tree you then can angle the camera in almost any direction.

Browning Trail Camera tree mount oak brush

Browning Trail Camera Tree Mount Bolted to tree

Browning Trail Camera Tree Mount around a small tree with the camera pointed up the hill to watch a trail the passes above. Lag bolts can also be used to securely mount a Browning Tree Mount to a solid tree. This camera is also angled to match the slope of the trail it is watching and tipped slightly down.

Browning Trail Camera tree mount bundle limbs

Browning Recon Force Trail Camera tilted to match slope of trail

Browning Trail Camera Tree Mount used to bundle several small trees together. The trees were about three feet apart and using the two cinch straps I pulled them all together to form a fairly solid mounting location for this spring I wanted to watch. I got some fun action from this location which was only made possible by using the Browning Tree Mount. Below is my favorite elk video from this camera's location.

Notice how this Recon Force trail camera is tilted. I have found it best to angle the trail cameras to match the angle of the trail that it is watching. See sample images.

Browning Recon Force Trail Camera mounted on fence post with tree mount

Browning Trail Camera Tree Mount on Angled Tree

Here is a Browning Trail Camera Tree Mount used on an old metal fence post. A half fallen tree works great for mounting a trail camera with the Browning Trail Camera Tree Mount.

Better framed critters.
I get much better framed images and video of critters if I tilt the trail camera to match the angle of the trail it was watching. A perfectly level camera pointed at a trail that is on an incline chops the heads off the critters on the uphill side and chops the legs off the critters on the downhill side. The best way to get a trail camera angled to match the trail angle is a Browning Tree Mount. These mounts also make mounting cameras to all sorts of strangely angled trees a breeze.

View from trail camera that is level

View with a trail camera that is tilted to match the angle of slope

Checking the view from the trail camera on this setup showed that on the high side of the slope my head would get cut off. The camera is setup in a level position when taking this photo. Here is the view after tilting the trail camera to match the angle of the slope of the trail it was pointed at. In this position I get a nice view of the antlers of a bull elk all the way across the view of the camera.

Reviewing video and images in the field.
Most of my cameras do not have a viewfinder to preview what the camera is pointed at. I do have one Spec Ops camera with a viewfinder that makes getting the camera pointed exactly where I want it very easy. For all of my other cameras I purchase a USB adapter cable for my Samsung Galaxy SIII camera. This adapter allows me to plug in USB devices like keyboards, hard drives and in this case, SD card readers. Whenever a set a camera in a new location I walk past the camera then pull the SD card and review it to make sure it is pointed right where I want it. I also review what is on the camera when I go back to swap out SD cards and batteries. Sometimes I find that the critters are passing more along one side or the other. By having the ability to check this in the field I can make the adjustment to the camera without waiting another couple weeks before I go back out to check them again.

Samsung Galaxy S3 usb sdhc card reader for trail cameras

Using a Samsung USB adapter and SD card reader to read the SDHC cards from my trail cameras.

To review the AVI format of the video that my Browning Trail Cameras take I had to get a video playing app. At first I found that the "MX Player" app worked to play the videos however after an upgrade in Android I could never get this app to play the video format anymore. I found that VLC worked great at playing the video format. I did have to side load the app because it wasn't available in the US because of some US phones not being compatible or something. Anyhow VLC works great on my SIII.

Here's a weird thing I also found about using the USB SD card reader. For whatever reason I have to huff warm moist air onto the USB connecter just before I plug it into the adapter cable to get the card reader to be recognized. I have two different SD card readers and both of them require the huff to work. I'm guessing that the moisture gives the connection just a little more strength. I wonder if a gold plated connector would do the trick. Whatever the case this trick always works.

More is better.
I ended up using six trail cameras to scout for elk in relatively small area. I found that the elk did frequent the area but were not in the area all the time. I learned that they generally moved in a clockwise pattern completely opposite of how I thought they would have moved. I learned that they never frequented the timber I thought that they would be bedding in... The point is I learned a ton about what was going on in that area when I wasn't there. This gave me confidence to stick it out when the first three trips out archery hunting I didn't see a single elk. On my fourth trip I found and shot a spike. Having several cameras gave me valuable information on how and when they moved through the area giving me the confidence that I wasn't wasting my time hunting the area. This also proved in helping my son Dallen take a nice bull elk a few weeks after I took the spike.

Where I like to place them.
I like to put my cameras out watching areas that I think would funnel elk and deer. Along the edge of a cliff, in a saddle going over a ridge, along a heavily used game trail, these are typical places I set my cameras to watch. And of course I like to set them up watching springs.

One location that has amazed me with the videos it has captured is a bare patch of dirt along the edge of some quaking aspens. I set the camera out watching this relatively barren of vegetation spot because it offered a clear view where animals would not be blocked by under brush, limbs etc. The bare patch is about 30 yards in diameter and I just have the camera pointing across the center of the spot. There isn't any trail trails going through it but deer, elk, bears, and coyotes have all been captured crossing that bare patch.

In some situations I will position dead fall trees and limbs and set them along the edges of where the camera is viewing to get critters to funnel around the dead fall and in front of the camera better.

This is a playlist of all my YouTube trail camera action.

2013 Utah Mule Deer Rut Trail Camera Action

There have been a few pretty nice bucks crawling out of their hiding spots and showing up to chase the does. Below are a few compilations of rutting mule deer bucks in Northern Utah. I have also been taking photos of mule deer this fall including most of the bucks I have captured on the trail cameras.

This buck has been named the Church Buck because of me getting a bunch of photos of him on a Sunday morning and apparently my friends thought I was skipping church. No, I wasn't sneaking out of church... well at least not when I took photos of this buck. Church Buck is also a fitting name with the fact that he has such a "perfectly" symmetrical four point rack. "Be ye therefore perfect..." Hmm...


This Recon Force trail camera caught the Church Buck catching up with a doe.


Here's a couple of nice bucks in hot pursuit of does.


This doe pees in front of the trail camera and two bucks curl their noses in pursuit.


This buck with a broken G2 is very elusive. I have not been able to find him in person.


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