The last few weeks have been crazy. I’ve traveled to Wyoming for elk, Nebraska for ducks and Arkansas for speckled bellies. A lot of early mornings and late nights in the field culminated in some fantastic outdoor television content that should make its way into your home starting sometime in July on the Outdoor Channel.
I know what you’re thinking – pretty sweet, huh? And to be completely honest, it was! I just spent two weeks hunting my way across the Heartland with good friends and good outfitters. Throughout the 14 days of wind and weather, I depended on one thing to keep my feet warm and dry – my 9-inch Arctic Chipps. Although, I must admit to pulling on my 5-mil neoprene waders a few times out of necessity.
The first stop was Casper, Wyoming. Pulling out of the Casper/Natrona County International Airport, I headed east to the Wagonhound Ranch near Douglas, WY, where I joined the NASCAR Outdoors production team for five days of spot-and-stalk action pursuing big elk through the Rocky Mountain’s Laramie Range.
Temperatures ranged from the high teens to the mid-40s. We experienced average wind speeds around 20 MPH with gusts pushing 30 MPH. Needless to say, it was a little chilly. The steep terrain coupled with a little bit of altitude reminded me just how flat my home state of Oklahoma really is.
Next, I moved 130 miles east across the Wyoming state line to Scottsbluff, NE, and the North Platte River. There I hooked up with the Ducks Unlimited Television crew for a three day youth waterfowl hunt with DU volunteer Mike Winchell. The good news – my waders never left my bag. I had the benefit of genuine lamb shearling liners on my feet and layers of moisture wicking insulating gear on my body.
The final stop was Stuttgart, AR, for the 76th Annual World’s Championship Duck Calling Contest over Thanksgiving weekend. More wind, more weather, and the waders finally made an appearance. Between the Wings Over The Prairie Festival in downtown Stuttgart, and Speck hunting historic flooded rice fields outside of town it was roaring success.
The same boots that got me through Canada in October got the nod in November, (for obvious reasons.) From the Rockies’ to the rice fields, my laces got a little bit longer every trip. Undoubtedly due to the miles of hiking and the natural form fit of the sturdy leather stretching ever so slightly around my foot. These boots just keep getting better and better!
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