Browning Defender 850 WiFi Trail Camera Operation

So I've been playing with the new Defender 850 trail cameras lately.  I thought I would share some of the things I have found that might help you get the most out of your Browning trail camera.

The option to connect to these cameras via an app on your phone or tablet is pretty geeky cool. I like this function most for going through the setting and using the live preview to point the camera in the perfect direction. Here's how the app connecting process works.

With the power on turned on the camera, you then open the Browning Defender app on your phone. The trail camera is always using low power Bluetooth so when you turn on the Defender App it will either automatically connect via Bluetooth or you will have to select the Bluetooth camera name and then press the connect button.

Once you have this Bluetooth connection established you then can click the "BLU <> WIFI" button to switch the camera into wifi mode. At this point be a little patient as it may take a few seconds for your phone to see the trail camera in your available wifi's to connect to. Once the wifi shows up select to connect to it and then hit the back button on your Android phone (not sure what the iPhone people do). Now you will have a wifi connection to the phone and can use the Live View, Playback and Settings options. Pretty simple.

In the video below you can see how the live preview works. This is nice to point the camera where you want it, walk past it and see how critters would frame up in the view and adjust the camera position as needed.

Digging Out The Marshy Spring — Summer Trail Camera Action

 

A photo posted by Brady Smith (@diyhntr) on

 

 

 

Trail cameras are the best! I love capturing the activity of the critters on the mountain. Especially in full HD video with my Browning Recon Force trail cameras. As you can see in the videos on this page I have captured some pretty fun stuff so far this year.

After seeing the 7x8 bull on my trail cam last year I have been hopeful some other "larger" bulls would be on my cameras this summer. So far I have only been getting two spikes and a variety of two year old bulls. I usually get a couple three year old bulls but none so far this year. Well if I did have a large bull on camera do you think I would be showing anyone until after I knew he was dead? ;)

For years I have been slowing digging out a marshy spring area trying to make it into a small pond for the critters to play in. I regularly pack in a shovel to dig from the safety of the solid ground around the muddy, marshy spring. In July I packed in waders for the first time so that I could really get into the mud and water and dig it out. I spent 3 hours in the nasty mud digging it out. I should have brought gloves as my right hand received a nasty blister. What a workout. I still would like to dig it out some more on one side but it will have to wait for another trip.

I have also been hauling in 50 pound mineral and salt blocks with my Pack Wheel to help encourage the critter to hang around to get their picture taken.

On this page are some of my favorite trail cam action from this summer. At the bottom of this page is a YouTube playlist with most of the video action I have posted. 

The elk and moose have really been enjoying the new pond. Seeing the spike I call Thumper (a small spike with a notch in his right ear) splashing around in the pond is so awesome. Excited to see more of this in the future.

To stay up-to-date with my trail cam and blog action follow me on Instagram.

 

Browning Trail Camera with rechargeable batteries

I have gone through many alkaline batteries in trail cams from using them in video mode. To help save on batteries I made some homemade 12v 10 pack Ni-MH external battery packs but found that the bears and elk liked to rip them off the trees and chew the cords in half. This year I have been just using rechargeable batteries inside the trail cameras and they work fairly well. Because they don't start out at 12v with only eight batteries in them I like to replace the batteries every trip up the mountain to maintain enough power to run the cameras. The only downside I have found to using the NiMH rechargeable batteries in the camera is that the night video doesn't have quite as good of distance for critters that are further away from the camera.


Browning Trail Camera with rechargeable batteries

With fully charged Ni-MH rechargeable batteries the screen on my Browning trail cams will show around 53-60%.

 


 

 

 

 

Checking Trail Cameras In June - More Pack Wheel Fat Tire Testing

Selfie of Kb and The DIY Hunter, hiking in with a Pack Wheel and a Mineral block

My youngest hunting bud KB along for the hike and helping me by taking photos and video.  


Hiking Uphill with Pack Wheel

Climbing a steeper grade with a 50 lb mineral block and around 70+ pounds of gear.


hiking in with a Pack Wheel and a Mineral block.

Hiking past a Browning Strike Force Trail camera.


Big Black Bear Browning Trail Camera Photo

The big Black Bear that I get on occasion on my trail cameras. Notice his size compared to me in the photo just above this photo. 

Exactly one month ago I checked my cameras that I had left out for the winter and took in more. I also was testing a fatter tire system on the Pack Wheel. On this trip up the mountain I wanted to test the fatty tire a little more.

KB was my helper for this trip on the mountain. He was excited to be out on the mountain with dad. We also had to take his Micro Midas BL-22 just in case we came across a coyote. He wants to shoot one really bad. It's pretty cute. He has visions of getting rich off the $50 bounty the state of Utah has on them to help with the deer herd. I like his inthusasium. He has over the years realized that getting a coyote isn't as easy as it looks on the hunting videos.

On this trip in a picked up a little larger mineral block that weighs in at 50 lbs. I used the Pack Wheel to haul in this block another trail camera, 80 AA rechargeable batteries, 3 liters of Powerade, a gallon zip lock baggie full of granular B&J mineral lick, and a shovel. I didn't weigh it but I can safely say it was over 70 pounds of added weight to the Pack Wheel.

Like I have said in the past I have clearly found that minerals don't bring in the critters. They just help me get photos of the critters that are already there. I was very surprised thinking that I might have more elk and larger deer show up. This just hasn't been the case. I have yet to even get a four point buck on camera at the location I like to put out the mineral, and that's in over three years of putting the mineral out and having cameras watching it. I also still get very few elk at all on the two cameras I have by the mineral drop area. Now if an elk or deer is at the mineral drop location they will stick around for a bit to get a lick of the mineral but by far minerals are no magic attractant.

A secondary reason for hauling in the mineral blocks is that it provides me a great way to test the Pack Wheel during the summer and provide Pack Wheel upper body exercise. There is no way I would be hauling in 50 lb blocks of mineral on my back without the Pack Wheel as it easily as it greatly helps. 

Like last time out I am testing a few new things with the Pack Wheel, primarily the fatter wheel and tire. While I have found that a fatter tire and wheel to be considerably more expensive to build I haven't found it to be earth shatteringly better than the fat 2.35 wide tires currently offered on the 26/29er builds. Don't get me wrong, the fatter tire is nice and works well. I just wouldn't run out and upgrade my current wheel to this one on my Pack Wheel. If I was shopping for a Pack Wheel I think the fatter tire option is something to consider.

It was nice having KB along with me on this trip. I like spending one on one time with my kids. KB was great at taking photos and video of me testing the Pack Wheel on the trip in. He was a trooper and we both got in some great exercise not returning home until around 11pm. Oops, momma wasn't too happy as KB had camp Kiesel to go to early in the morning the next day.

On the way in we notice a lot of bear sign. My second camera had been turned upside down and had chew marks in it. A bear had messed with it just hours after I put it out a full month ago. no images from that camera.

At my third camera there was mud wiped across the camera. Yep, the footage shows another bear. And at this camera I also got a couple good photos of the large Black Bear I have seen before up there on my trail cameras.

Approaching the fourth camera along my route an ant bed had recently been ripped up with a log being pulled out of the ground. this was  just to the side of the camera. You can see a little of the bear's back in the video that was captured of the bear raiding the ant mound.

I like getting the bears on camera I just wish they would leave my cameras alone. I'm pretty sure their noses are able to track down the cameras so easily.

Follow me on my new Instagram and Facebook accounts to keep up with what I am currently up to.

Bull Elk Browning Trail Camera Photo

Two young bull elk that have stopped by the mineral block a couple times in the pat month. The only elk to come into the minerals.


Moose Selfie Browning Trail Camera Photo

A bull moose getting a selfie on a Browning Strike Force trail camera.


Bull Elk Browning Trail Camera Photo

One of the young bulls that is frequenting the area.


Black Bear Browning Trail Camera Photo

The smaller of the two bears that are in the area. This bear is the one that has been getting my cameras. Including this camera just after this photo was taken.


Black Bear Browning Trail Camera Photo

The big Black Bear. This guy is a pig.

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