After five DUTV hunts in seven weeks I was ready for a break. I was anxious to drop the duck gear in the garage and enjoy some much-needed time at home with the family. But, I did manage one free morning. So, what’s an outdoor television producer to do? Go hunting!
With my wife at work and the boys at school I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to go hunting with an old friend. Not to mention the idea of picking up a shotgun instead of a heavy Panasonic HD camera was rather appealing.
Witnessing first hand how the recent cold snap was pushing birds down from the Illinois River Valley to Missouri and Arkansas I decided to make the short 45-minute drive east of my home in Tulsa, Oklahoma to Esper Farms.
The small Midwest duck haven on the banks of the Arkansas River boasts a 4-acre spring-fed pond with an abundance of food and cover. Small in size, but big on action, the family duck club is not unlike any other club you might find across this great country of ours.
On a typical morning you might find my good friend Vaughn Esper in the blind hunting with his two lovely granddaughters or sipping coffee with an old friend. For those lucky enough to be invited, the farm is the ideal getaway for an early morning shoot.
Constructed by Vaughn himself the roughhewn duck blind was milled from the surrounding cash of red cedar that grows thick in our part of the world. Situated smack-dab in the middle of the pond it’s easily accessed by a narrow earth jetty. Easy walking. But more importantly dry!
A veteran outfitter of 30-plus years Vaughn is the man in charge of decoy placement, so there’s rarely a need for hip boots or waders. This was especially nice because I wanted to take advantage of the sub-freezing temperature and test my new Chippewa Country boots. The series is waterproof, lightweight, durable, comfortable, and features a Vibram sole. Everything you’ve come to expect from Chippewa.
In the end we passed on more ducks than we shot, we reminisced about past adventures, sipped coffee, and generally enjoyed the crisp morning. It seemed like a fitting way to end my first year Living in Chippewa Boots.
How will you wrap up your fall hunting season?
12/18/10 @ 19:57
It\'s been fun following your adventures this fall! Looks like your boots have taken you many places. I hope your hunting seasons have been successful.
I am in need of some good sturdy boots for our early hunting seasons. Mostly plains hunts, but I\'m thinking about getting into Black Powder next fall. I was looking at the 8\" Bay Apache Loggers, but am up for any suggestions!
I didn\'t get much personal hunting in but had a good harvest with my Dad on the Eastern Plains. We were hunting deer. Other than that, I\'ve been focusing on helping others get into hunting. It\'s been a very rewarding and successful hunting season here in Colorado.
12/27/10 @ 22:28
Douglas, who could forget Season 1 of Dangerous Game? Best season ever! Like a lot of hunters I have felt your pain. I have tried the heavily insulated rubber boots before and was never impressed with the results. I am a big fan of the Arctic 9\" Bay Apache boot. It has a classic look that features the Chip-A-Tex waterproof membrane and a Vibram sole. And, the genuine lamb shearling lining and wool polypropylene felt insulation will serve you well in the Scandinavian Mountains! If you are planning to attend the SCI shows in Dallas, TX or Reno, NV I would suggest picking them up while stateside to avoid any pricey shipping costs. Let me know if you need help locating a Chippewa retailer. Cheers
12/29/10 @ 02:00
Lauren, thank you for following the Living in Chippewa Boots series! This year I had some wildly successful outings and some not so much. But, I was fortunate to have great hunting and fishing buddies by my side throughout. I am glad to hear that in addition to your own outdoor pursuits you have a genuine interest in introducing others to the Great Outdoors. Keep up the good work. Regarding your question about a sturdy boot for Colorado hunting...you picked a great boot! As you undoubtedly know the women\'s outdoor market leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to clothing and footwear. And although Chippewa does not currently offer every boot in a women\'s model they have set themselves apart from the typical manufacturer who might be trying to sell you a small men\'s or boy\'s boot. Chippewa was the first outdoor bootmaker to offer women\'s boots made specifically for women\'s feet. The logger may be slightly heavier than you are used to, but I think you will find it indestructible. You are getting 8-inches of ankle supporting laces, the Chip-A-Tex waterproof membrane, 400-grams of Thinsulate insulation, and the up and down traction of the Vibram Tacoma logger sole. Not to mention a more accurate fit. Let me know how they feel.