By: Bears Butt


WOW!  What a phenomenal day we have on our hands!  For some of you, you have ventured onto and seen some amazing footage of videos people have taken and posted up.  One such person (people) has done such a great job at posting up personal experiences that he and his friends have landed a famous spot on Animal Planet, a series called “100 miles from nowhere”.  You can go to and look up “Matt in the Wild”….he is the guy who does a BUNCH of very crazy stuff and a lot of what he has posted up actually scares me!  He rides a bike on the sharp edge of a rock with 100 or more feet of drop off on both sides.  That one made my butt pucker and my feet hurt from trying to stay on the bike!

Well, that’s one thing happening in our world, but the other MORE FAMOUS thing is the debut of “Weasel in the Wild dot com”……he has put up his very first video up and as I understand it, he had like 10 hours of video that he condensed down to 8 minutes.  He is asking for comments so he can refine his technique AND he is looking for ideas on what to post up next.  Give him a lookie-see and some comments!  Here is the link:


On a side note, I’m working on that “gap shooting” information and will post up some stuff on that when I get it compiled.  Winemaker thinks I’m “obsessed” with this archery stuff.  Well, I’m just trying to be the best I can be and that takes experimentation and lots of practice.  Chris Barton posted up on Facebook a very good comment she found.  It goes something like this:  “It seems the more I practice, the luckier I get”.

Also, if you don’t benchmark yourself as you go along, you don’t really see any improvement (or lack of improvement) and this is what I’m doing in conjunction with the Gap stuff.  My clip board is getting full of papers as I progress…..and I must say, I am progressing.

I’m also running out of arrows.  I have 10 that are all the same…same length, same colors, same weight, same shaft spine.  But, now four of them don’t have nocks and one is being repaired with a broken fletching.  On order are 3 more arrows and 12 nocks.  I wouldn’t have this small issue IF I could hit the bunk each time I shoot.  But, the earth has a greater gravitational pull where I shoot than other places.  It also has quite a few rocks with minds of their own that jump up and grab at my arrows as they fly over top of them.  I shoot in a very spooky place.
Bears Butt
March 31, 2015

Written on March 31st, 2015 , Archery stuff
By: Bears Butt

Arrows-and-Missing-the-TargetWent to the field last night and joined Weasel and Squirrel for a little “long range” practice.  My goal….hit the “bunk”…..The bunk is the big block of compressed foam that the target gets put on to stop the arrow.  It measures about 4 ft. long and 2 1/2 ft. tall.  I did place a target on it just because I had one, but my goal, like I said was just to hit the bunk.  As you know, I only have a 30 pound bow in my hands and that is if I could pull it back to 28 inches, but I don’t….my shortness comes into play and I only have a 26 inch draw….that makes my bow about a 25 pound one.  This is all just fine.  I’m working my way up to a 50 pound bow and will be pulling about 45 pounds when I get there.  Until then, I’ll learn to shoot this little guy and compete with others in my class.

So, looking at the bunk from 60 yards away is almost a ridiculous thing to be doing and planning on hitting that little thing is mostly just a dream.  When I first tried shooting an arrow down to hit it, the arrow hit the ground about 15 feet in front of it and bounced off the ground and hit it firmly in the center!  Will that work at a formal event and count?  I’m not sure, but it would be better if I could reach the target without using the forces of the ground to assist me.

So, how high do I have to aim that little pencil projectile in order to reach the bunk?  I have no references down range except a sage bush growing on top of the hill behind the bunk.  If I draw back, put the point of the arrow even with the top of the sage bush but in line with the bunk, maybe that will be high enough.  And that is what I did….The release went well and the arrow headed straight toward the bunk….and then it hit the ground at least 10 feet in front of the bunk…firmly bounced kicking up dust and planted itself into the bunk!  As long as I have hard dirt in front of the bunk maybe I could learn to “bark” (shooting squirrels from trees by hitting the bark of the tree, knocking the squirrel out and not damaging its little body) my arrows into the 10 ring.  But remembering the 3D arena we shot in a few weeks ago, the dirt there is very soft and not conducive to barking arrows into 10 rings.  I have to learn to do this another way.

So, what can I reference to now?  The sage bush isn’t going to work, not high enough.  What about the top of the barn?  That would work as long as I’m shooting down on the farm, but not anywhere else.  There must be a way.  I know the archers of way past (think of Sir Butt), used to stand and shoot hundreds of arrows at their enemies and some how get them to hit the guys down range and they were a lot farther away than 60 yards.  Heavier poundage draw weights no doubt played a part in that but still the same problem I am having right now.

Here is something that came to mind last night.  I could tie one end of a string to my leg and the other to my bow hand.  Drawing the bow up and shooting until the arrow finally hit the bunk.  The string would be adjusted as I continued my testing and once the arrow hit the bunk I would tie it off firmly.  That would be my 60 yard string length.  While lifting the bow to the proper height, as soon as the string was tight, the angle would be right for that shot…let er rip!  What a plan!  Is that legal in a Formal Invitational competition?  Maybe, but I doubt it, and besides I sure would look professional out on the line with a string tied to my leg and hand.  There has to be a better way.

Instinct shooting!  Sure, for you who have shot a million arrows and know your bow perfectly.  Just like throwing a baseball.  Look at the target and shoot!  Perfect shots every time.

I am becoming more and more familiar with my bow and I like it a lot, but I’m not an instinct shooter yet.  I want to play in the upcoming Formal and when I do I would like a few of the arrows to hit the target.  I’ve got to figure this thing out.

Well, before the night was over I actually did hit the bunk and I was doing it quite regularly…all six arrows in a few of the ends I shot actually stuck in the bunk without the aid of the ground bounce I was soooooo getting used to.  What I found might just help you when you take up shooting arrows with a bow.  My draw would begin level, as if the target was just 20 yards ahead of me, anchoring like I have learned to do.  Then I would bend my body from the waist up, like leaning back while holding my form.  I would lean back until the knuckle of my middle finger on my bow hand was even with the center of the bunk.  Then I would move my eye to the arrow itself, making sure it was in alignment with the bunk.  Of course the view showed the arrow pointing up at the moon, but that was ok, the elevation was right because my knuckle said it was.  Once I was happy with the alignment, a quick double check of the knuckle and I would release my draw….the arrow would arc up and away and fall right into the bunk!  Well, it would if I continued to keep the arrow in alignment, which didn’t happen all the time, but enough times that I came away feeling pretty good about it.  So, there is my reference point for a 60 yard shot….middle finger knuckle….I’m not so sure of this to go to a tattoo parlor and have a 60 tattooed on it, but I’ll continue to work on my shooting using the knuckle as my reference and see if things hold true.

At the 50 yard linemy reference point fell somewhere between my index finger knuckle and the curvature between it and my middle finger knuckle.  We were hurrying with our shooting at this point as the sun was going down and so I didn’t come away with the same feeling of “surety” as I did from the 60 yard line.  More practice is in order.  The biggest thing that I came away with was the movement of my upper body while holding my form from a level position.  My feet stayed where they always are and I wasn’t just aiming the bow up.  My body moved back from my hips, everything else remained the same.  I’ll continue to use this method.

My next practice session will again begin at 60 yards, move to 50 and then 40…just like the Formal is done.  April 11 will come too quickly.

Bears Butt

March 29, 2015

Written on March 29th, 2015 , Archery stuff
By: Bears Butt


The next big shoot out with the Brigham Bowmen club is the Formal Invitational to be held April 11 and 12 in Tremonton.  The big boys and girls will be shooting at 60, 50 and 40 yards, while the 12 to 14 year olds will shoot 50, 40 and 30 yards and the 9 to 11 year olds cover 30, 20 and 10 yards.  Those younger than 9 will shoot 20, 14 and 10 (that is where I should be).  The targets look LARGE!  But I’m sure when one is on the line shooting it will be quite a different story.

So, Weasel had me convinced to go to the field and give it a go last night.  I didn’t have much time and so I only shot maybe 15 times and the big bale of foam.  No target was placed on it, just shooting at the bale.  I figured if I could hit the bale, which measures about 4 feet long by 2 feet high that would be a good start to my long range shooting.  Any practice is better than none.  I am going to have to get myself used to shooting every day that I can in order to do much of anything in the realm of archery.  My ultimate goal is to put a deer in the freezer using my recurve bow.  That will take a lot of range time.  I owe it to the deer to be as accurate as I can be.

As you can see in the picture, the target is quite large, but you can see also it is a long ways down to the 60 yard mark.

I shot a set of 6 arrows at the 60 yard mark last night and had arrows flinging all over the place, two completely over the target and the other 4 bouncing off the ground.  Not bad for my first time and I got the confidence that my bow will actually shoot farther than 60 yards….I had my doubts.

Weasel then convinced me I should move to the 40 yard line and give it a go from there.  His teaching said, shoot from there until you are confident you can hit the bale every time and shoot 50 or so shots.  Once all the arrows are hitting the bale, move back to 50 yards and do it all over again and then eventually you will be shooting at the 60 yard line.  OK!  I’m good with that.

Moving up to the 40 yard line I decided I needed to do some calculating in my head as to how high to aim the bow in order to hit the bale.  My bow will not shoot an arrow straight at the bale and hit it, however it will bounce an arrow off the ground and hit it….I did that several times last night.  I also employed the entire bale to stop the arrows….4 ft X 2 ft….Not too good of a group.  But like I said, I did end with all 6 arrows hitting the bale without bouncing off the ground to do it.  A start to my long range shooting.

I read a bit on the internet this morning about how a Formal Invitational tournament works and even though I watched as Weasel and Conner shot in last years, it was all new to me and I didn’t retain much of any of it.  The article I read did emphasize how taxing it is on the body.  You shoot 5 sets of 6 arrows per set at each of the target distances.  That is 30 arrows at 60 yards, 30 at 50 and then 30 at 40 yards.  90 arrows total!  That is a whole lot of pulling the bow back and letting the arrow fly!  And then….you have to walk down range and get your arrows and walk back.  5 X 60 yards, plus 5 X 50 yards, plus 5 X 40 yards……In comparison to a day of hunting that isn’t much walking, but for old people out of shape it is a lot of walking!

I’ll keep you all posted on my progress in the field before the big day.  I would like to do well in this shoot.

Bears Butt

March 27, 2015

Written on March 27th, 2015 , Archery stuff
By: Bears Butt


There is a lot to read both in books and on the internet about proper fur handling.  It is really easy once you get a handle on how it’s done, but then too it is VERY easy to stop doing some of the little steps that could just make your stack of furs not look as good as they could.  I’ve told you some of the reasons that the wild fur demand is not what it was even a year ago and prices are at a low we haven’t seen for a few years.  We sold a raccoon at the auction last January and received a check for $.23….That’s right!  The fur sold for a quarter and after the commission for the auction house we netted a whole 23 cents!  Not even a fourth of what is needed for a cup of coffee at the cheap place.  We took a lot of pride in those raccoons and put them up according to the book.  It wasn’t because it was shabbily put up, but more because it probably wasn’t fully prime, but still, what would we have gotten had we not done to it what we did?

So, with that illustration of market prices, you can still make a few dollars if you go above and beyond what is needed in order to sell your furs for a fair price.

With our muskrats, we want the fur side very dry before we put them on the stretchers.  After skinning them, if they show any signs of being wet, we lay them on a drying rack or hang them from the over head rafters of the skinning shed where they will get the most benefit from our 60 degree heater.  We maintain the rafter area of the shed at 55 to 65 degrees and we tend to lean towards the 55 temp more than the upper temp.  We accomplish that with a small heater that can be regulated to turn itself on and off based on the setting we use.  I picked it up at a garage sale for $5 and it works very well.

When the furs are completely dry, Weasel grabs up a curry comb once used to groom the horses and goes to work making sure he gets any burrs, weed seeds and mud out of the fur and also makes sure the fur fluffs up really nice.  When his Quality Control mind says it’s perfectly combed, he tosses it to me….I’m the fleshing man.

I’ll turn the hide fur side in and place it on the fleshing board and go to work with my fleshing tool.  My choice of fleshing tools is a plain old windshield ice scraper.  Most of them have sharp corners and so I begin by filing off the sharp edges, as these have a tendency to snag the hide and rip holes while you aren’t looking.  My fleshing board is one I have to lean into.  It is long enough to come up to my belt buckle and I place the butt end of it against the wall and scrape down the hide.  A little “grease” left on the hide is totally acceptable, but no meat or large chunks of fat can be left anywhere on the hide.  When the hide is adequately fleshed, I take it off the board and hand it to my brother Bob.

Bob is the oldest in the family and has been trapping nearly his whole life.  He is old enough to know the business from end to end.  I think if it were not for trapping he wouldn’t be in the healthy shape he is in.  He takes the hide and positions it on the stretcher making sure it is centered.  The leg holes, eyes and ears must be in a certain position before he pins the nose with a clothes pin and then pulls the hide down tight at the bottom of the stretcher.

A lot of guys will just pull the hide down on the stretcher without the clothes pin holding the nose.  This causes the “mouth” hole to stretch out and the end of the stretcher protrude above the hide.  A totally acceptable practice, but it makes for hides that are not uniform, gives an impression to the buyers that the trapper doesn’t care much and so they will offer less than what maybe the hides are really worth.

Take this for what I might be imagining, but if I were a fur buyer and came across a batch of  prime hides, full of burrs, mud, put up while wet and the mouth ends of them were wide, I would not offer a very high price for them.  After all, once I own them, they are reflecting on MY character and even if the auction house buyers are un-caring about how the hides look I like to think MY hides are the best in the building.  On the other hand, if I came across a batch of prime hides with uniform mouth (nose) ends, combed, put up dry and all looking very uniform in shapes, I’d tend to pay a higher price for them as they will reflect MY way of thinking and WOULD be the best looking batch of hides in the auction house.  Think about it.

Well, that is what we have right now, 515 perfectly put up rats, all ready for the local fur buyer to come and take a look at and give us a price.  We like to deal with a “straight through price”, one in which the buyer says “I’ll give you X dollars for each rat you have and I won’t grade them”!  515 times $ = he takes them and we wish him the best of luck at the auction house!  Bob always likes to think he will net the biggest and best price for his furs out of all the other trappers in this end of the state and 9 out of 10 times he does.  I’ll help him catch and put them up, but they are his in the end and he negotiates the price.  I don’t like the haggling end of the business.

He keeps me informed as the buyers begin their haggling.  Of course they want the furs for the least amount of money they have to give and we want the most because we know they are worth it.  Of course everyone knows that nobody wants to come out losing.  We know that and are fair with out side of the bargain, but we also know what they are worth.  We are into them our gas money, wear and tear on the vehicles and a token amount for our time in the skinning shed.  Anything over that we consider a profit that will cover the cost of something we are dreaming about obtaining with our fur checks this year.  If, however the buyers don’t come through with what we figure a good price….well….we have enough freezer space to keep them until next year.  515 rats is a good catch and a fair bargaining number, but with next years catch, we would have over 1,000 rats AND that my friend is a much bigger bargaining batch of perfectly put up rats!

Bears Butt

March 24, 2015


Written on March 24th, 2015 , Daily Trapping Events
By: Bears Butt



My mentor and friend, Lynn Hayes, graciously leant me a book titled “Guide to the Longbow” by Brian Sorrells to read and glean what I could from its pages.  A very good book dedicated to shooting the longbow.  From my reading Brian Sorrells shoots a LOT!  A couple of times through the book he mentions having 3 bows near the door and ready for him to shoot should he get an inkling to do so, which is all the time.  If you are into longbow or any traditional bow shooting, do yourself a favor and pick up this book and read it….lots of good stuff in those pages.

So, what did I get from it?  A bunch of tips on how to actually shoot the bow and hit what is desired.  The very bottom line of all bottom lines comes back to the basics of proper form and lots of practice!

I found the arrow section the most interesting as that is where my biggest confusion is at this point in time.  I’ve been struggling with arrows and have finally found some I “believe in”.  Sure they are light and small, but they seem to fly pretty straight and hit the target without looking like the two arrows to the right in the picture above.  But from the book, he says that a proper arrow needs to weigh 8 grains per pound of draw weight of the shooter.  Not necessarily the draw weight of the bow itself.  With a few differences in manufacturers, draw weights are pretty much rated at 28 inches of draw distance and any difference plus or minus from that makes the draw weight different.  I draw at 26 inches and I lose about 2 1/2 pounds of draw weight per inch, so with my 30 pound rated bow, I am only drawing about 25 pounds.  So, under Mr. Sorrells guideline, my arrows should weigh 8 grains per inch of my 25 pound draw weight or 200 grains….this is his MINIMUM standard and makes a good starting point.

Next he talks about “spine” of the arrow.  Spine is the amount of flex the arrow has.  He (and others) says if the arrow has too stiff a spine it can’t flex around the handle (riser) of the bow and will hit the target with the back of the arrow to the right of the point end of the arrow.  The opposite is true if the back of the arrow hits to the left of the point, the spine is too light.  If you have little or no choice in your arrows spine you can alter the way the spine works, but adding weight to the point end of the arrow shaft if it’s too heavily spined.  There are arrow manufacturers that sell little weight discs that can be put on just in front of the arrow shaft and behind the point of the arrow, if they are screw on tips.  If your tips are glued on I have no idea what you would do in those cases.  Maybe try and pry the tip off and put on a heavier tip????

If your arrows are too lightly spined, you remove the tip and the insert and cut a fraction of the end off the arrow and replace the tip.  This shortens the arrow a bit, making the spine stiffer.  You can imagine if your arrow is say 5 feet long and it flexes pretty easily in the middle, you cut it down to one foot in length, it wouldn’t flex as much.  Remember, when cutting off your arrow at the tip end, don’t cut too much off because once it’s cut off, you can’t add it back.  A little goes a long way in effecting the spine flex.

Mr. Sorrells’ doesn’t say this, but I heard it from my mentor friend, you could add weight to the nock end of the arrow instead of cutting off the shaft to accomplish the same thing if your arrow spine is too light.  I suppose if your arrow shaft is too stiff, you could cut off the nock end of it instead of adding weight to the front….I’m guessing here, but it sort of makes sense to me.  If you try either of these to change your arrow and it blows up in your face, don’t blame me…remember, I’m guessing here!  Please read the fine print….(change font size to 2)….I ain’t responsible…..

He mentions something else that supposedly has just gotten into the Compound bow shooters vocabulary, but has been in the fore front of long bow and recurve shooters repertoire for a very long time and that is “Front of Center” (FOC).  I’m still trying to figure this one out, but it makes sense that it would figure into the whole arrow of choice scene.  An arrow with a FOC closer to the point would fly differently than one with its FOC closer to the nock.  My question to you at this time, without further explanation….Do you give a FOC?

Let’s look at this a little closer.  Your arrow is SOOOO long (outstretched arms).  If measured from just back of the tip, to the point of the nock where the string fits (inside part), the center of the arrow is in the middle of that measurement.  That is the Center of the arrow.  But, the tip weighs something and the nock weighs something, even it just a little and so the center of the arrow is not necessarily where the arrow will balance, if placed on the edge of a sturdy knife blade of something like that.  The balance point of the arrow is that FOC point, front of center.  If however your arrow balances behind the center point, more toward the nock end, you have a BOC…..Back of center is NOT a good thing.  I’m sure if you have a BOC arrow, it would tend to come back towards you should you shoot it.  Let’s say, for now, no arrows are made with BOC and that all arrows are FOCed.

As I study FOC more in depth I’ll report to you here what I find.  It makes sense (again) that adding a heavier tip to your arrow will force the FOC to move closer to the tip of the arrow.  Let’s think about what we just read about the spine of the arrow….adding weight to the front makes the spine weight go down….So, FOC and Spine weight are playing together here.  An arrow with a FOC closer to the tip has a less spine weight than one with a FOC closer to the nock.  It also makes sense to me that at some point between the center of the arrow and the point of FOC, your bow will like that arrow a whole lot better than one where the FOC is closer to the tip or closer to the nock.  That arrow needs to be FOC (spot) ON.  My goal now is to find out where the FOC my current “best” arrows is.  (Grammatically that does not sound proper….where my FOC is on my current best arrows, sounds better).  When I find that out I’ll report here.

Bears Butt

March 22, 2015

I just ran the test on my 10 “best” arrows and calculated the percent FOC for each:

1 = 8.95 %

2 = 8.14 %

3 = 8.29 %

4 = 8.49 %

5 = 8.47 %

6 = 8.14 %

7 = 8.70 %

8 = 8.47 %

9 = 8.47 %

10 = 8.84 %

So, as you can see, all my arrows are FOCed.




Written on March 22nd, 2015 , Archery stuff
By: Bears Butt

Travis Howard and the Moore’s Family chariot team won todays race!  Watch the action below!  March 21, 2015!!!  Way to go Travis and the Team!

Bears Butt
March 21, 2015

Written on March 21st, 2015 , Uncategorized
By: Bears Butt

Went to the Weber County Fairgrounds today for a little chariot racing fun.  Kenzie and Addie had never been and so we bet quarters on which team would win.  It was a fun day!  Here is how young girls cheer on their team!

Bears Butt

March 21, 2015

Written on March 21st, 2015 , Uncategorized
By: Bears Butt


Weasel, Squirrel and I hit the range last night to post up our next to the last league score for the current “thing” we are shooting.  I don’t know what the “game” is called but we are shooting a five spot target.  Well, the ones that are good enough to do that are shooting a five spot target, I’m shooting at a big old blue circle with black lines separating scoring rings.  Each team of 4 shooters posts up 8 different weeks of scores, how those scores are tallied in the end is way outside my guessing abilities but somehow they will decide which team did the best, worst etc.  All I know is that my scores have been around 100 with my best a 144 and I think my average is around a 125 to 130.

The whole object for me, so far in my archery career is to get better.  I’ve read where someone (or many someones) has said, “shoot 60 arrows a day to keep the zeros away”.  It is obvious I need more 60’s in a day because even last night a few zeros crept onto the score sheet.  But, even at that, shooting an arrow and getting a zero is better than not shooting an arrow.  It’s fun and I highly recommend it for old and young alike!

The lanes were pretty empty last night as it was the first day of Spring and folks were most likely enjoying a backyard BBQ or something rather than coming out to shoot bows.  For us it was a very relaxing way to spend a few hours on a Friday night.

I was coerced into playing in this league by Weasel and an old friend from the blackpowder scene, Marv Bunderson.  Both Weasel and Marv can, and do, shoot regular scores in the mid to high 290’s all the time and they have handicaps that rival pro-golfers.  To say it another way, they don’t have handicaps.  Squirrel and I have very large numbered handicaps.  His around the 70’s and mine in the 130’s.  Personally I like a large handicap, it means I have room for improvement.  When I golfed I didn’t have a handicap, mostly because I didn’t compete in golf games, but I still could shoot close to a par game in 9 holes.  The game became boring to me and I stopped playing.  What’s the point if you only win a nickel, dime or quarter from the ones you are golfing with?  Even the beer was not cold enough by the time the ninth hole came around.  I digress.

So, with lots of room for improvement in my shooting ability, I stepped up and decided to join this team of good shooters.  Their strategy (there is one you know) is to have Squirrel and I join their team, knowing full well we will post scores that increasingly get better over the 8 weeks and of course add to our scores our handicaps and suddenly, the team score is beating the best of the best in the end.  A good strategy if you ask me.  However, with my fading eye sight, new bow, bad form, arrows that are probably not tuned properly, a brace height that needs adjusting and a myriad of other archery related items, my scores have not been what those two thought I would be posting up….until…..last night!

Squirrel has been improving remarkably well over the weeks!  I’ll make up some scores here, but they aren’t far off from what was real.  160, 170, 180, 200, 210, 220, 230 and last night 246!

246!!!!!  And 11 X’s!  That is only 54 points less than perfect!  And with 60 arrows shot, he is less than 1 point per arrow from a perfect score!  Add that to his handicap!  I’m pretty sure his overall score exceeds 300 for this weeks score!

Me?  Well, let’s just say I scored a personal best!  My number doesn’t compare to Squirrels, but for me I’ll take it!  I felt good shooting and even though I hit the board a couple of time with low shots and put up 5 zeros during the event, I still managed to also put up 5 X’s to offset those O’s.  Mark me with a 162!  I’m dancing around now!  Add in my handicap and I’m close to a 300 but not quite.  I think you will see our team up near the top of the leader board for this week!

I learned something last night about shooting instinctively like I have to learn to do….Trust in the equipment…..Keep your form correct…..Follow through with the shot…..Keep your eye on where you want the arrow to end up.

My last shot of the night went like this, as I spoke to myself in my mind:  Wynn, this is your last shot of the night, shot number 60.  Sure you are tired.  Your first shot of this 5 shot sequence went into the board below the target.  See it hanging there?  A big fat zero and an embarrassing loud BANG for all to hear.  Get over it!  Your other 3 shots weren’t too bad, now make this one count.  It’s your last shot today.  Trust in yourself.  Look at the big old white spot down there.  It’s huge!  Let your instincts find the mark.  A smooth draw back to your anchor point.  That feels great doesn’t it?  Oh ya!  You got this.  Turn the bow slightly until the string touches your nose.  The string is now lined up with the arrow…that’s good.  Now focus on the white spot.  Release when ready and let your draw fingers touch your cheek….nice!  Watch down the sight plain as the arrow arches toward the big white circle…..BULLS EYE!  A solid X!

As I turned around to put my bow on the stand, the guy who was scoring us was looking through his monocular at my target.  He looked up and said….”Show off”!

Bears Butt

March 21, 2015


Written on March 21st, 2015 , Archery stuff
By: Bears Butt



Today is the first day of Spring 2015!  Happy Spring everyone!  When I think of Spring I think of fishing and when I think of fishing I think of catching fish.  Utah enacted a two pole limit to your fishing and you don’t have to have a special license to use two poles.  I wonder if the above picture would be legal and have two of them?  I won’t look up the rules for fishing with two poles as I can’t imagine how you would reel in three fish at one time on a pole like the one in the picture.  We will just let it go at that.

In America there is a craze that is just beginning to sweep the country.  It’s a fishing technique called “Tenkara”.  The fishing method is the favored way to fish in Asian countries.  I suppose because of its simplicity and inexpensive way to catch fish.  In my year in Viet Nam, I watched as all ages caught fish out of a sewage canal using this method of fishing.  A pole, line, hook and some sort of attractant on the hook.  The fish I saw caught were all really tiny, but they caught them by the bucket load and took them home.  Later, as I got to noticing my Mama Sone eating her lunch one day I saw just what those fish were used for….stuffed in a bottle and buried in the ground until they were “just right”.  Oh my heck!  I could not stand to be in the same area with her.  Those fish stunk sooooo bad!

I’m getting off subject.  Tenkara by definition means something like “from the heavens” or “from high above”.  From that you should be able to figure out that the bait is presented to the fish from above them and with a very long pole the fish shouldn’t see you, the fisherman, as you dangle the bait down to them.  I see on the internet there are Tenkara clubs being formed all around and lessons being offered to teach you just how it is done.  I suppose it would be best for the beginner to take lessons and learn just how and what the techniques are.  But as for me, I would just fall back on my younger days of fishing down on the farm in the crick!


Then again, it sure would be a nice upgrade from a stick to hold onto a 12 foot long fiberglas rod that cost $500 or more.  I’ll just bet you could catch a whole lot more fish with one of those than a plain old stick.

Bears Butt

March 20, 2015

Written on March 20th, 2015 , Fishing Stories
By: Bears Butt


The past several days have been a mix of yard work (very little but some), archery and finishing putting up rats.  It has been busy.  So, let me recap the host of events!

Saturday’s farm work went well.  We had another great crew to work the ditches and we finished the big long ditch from the creek, up through the rendezvous area to the pond and then from the pond to the main gate.  It was an all morning thing and when Bones and crew brought down the breakfast we had just finished up to the pond.  The timing was perfect!  And the breakfast was superb as well….eggs and ham!  The down side was Ducks egg was soooooo very “yolkie” he got a ton of it on his face and shirt…..GAG!  The rest of us enjoyed eating ours and watching him wipe his off.

Once the farm work was done, Weasel’s family and I went to an archery event…..The Utah State Archery finals.


We had signed up for our shooting to start at 3 p.m. and a couple of my mentors at the Brigham Bowmen talked me into playing.  Since all this archery stuff is all new to me, they told me there had to be at least 3 people sign up for any given “class” in order for them to create a bracket for that class.  So, I decided to play in the “traditional” bracket.  I’ve been shooting since January and can hit the target paper about half the time.  For me that is pretty good.  Mind you, I said hit the paper the target is printed on, not necessarily the target itself.  You have to figure that if I can hit the paper half the time, that some of them have to hit in the scoring ring sometimes too.  The target paper measures about 20 inches square and the target looks like the one in the flyer.  The white area scores 5 points and each ring coming away from the center score 4, 3, 2 and 1 respectfully.  Anything outside that are goose eggs.  I have learned I don’t like goose eggs but my score always contains several.  A hit on the paper itself and outside the rings is a goose egg and I managed to hit there and outside the whole paper many times on Saturday.

The shooters like Weasel who can hit the white area a lot, shoot at a different target.  There’s is 5 separate targets.


Their scoring is 5 points in the white, 4 points in the blue and zero anywhere else.  They do this so they don’t ruin arrows by hitting all of them in the center of the target.  Arrows are not cheap and any hit will cause the nock to break or become too weak to shoot again.  Robin Hoods are cool once you have an arrow sticking out of another and they give you bragging rights and something to hang on your wall.  Someday I will accidentally have one on my wall, I’m sure, but at a cost of the price of two arrows.

Squirrel shows us how dangerous it is to shoot all your arrows into the white.


Dangerous from his dad’s point of view, but giving him some confidence and bragging rights in his own mind.  I think he is not far off from shooting the “five spot” targets!

So, from this you can see that while I was flinging my arrows and trying hard to hit the big blue target, the kids were down at the other end of the shooting line, plunking arrows firmly into the white and blue rings with regularity.

Weasel, on the other hand, pulled a muscle in his back and ended up not shooting his normal 290 plus score.  When it was all over our scores looked like this:

Weasel 274, Conner 232, Kenzie 174, Squirrel 242 and me with a solid 132!

Chunking it all through a calculator, with 60 shots fired…..  Weasel averaged a 4.5, Conner 3.9, Kenzie 2.9, Squirrel 4.0 and me 2.2 per shot.  We all have much room for improvement.  And after everyone had shot and the scores and brackets were all figured up.  Weasel lost bad!  I think he was number 11 in his group.  Conner was the number one boy shooter in his bracket.  Kenzie was second in the girls of her age, Squirrel stomped his age group and came in with a number one and for an old guy shooting against only one other in my age bracket, they gave me a first.  My competition had a bad day and I felt really bad for him.  While my arrows were flinging all over the place especially in the last half of the competition (I had 12 goose eggs in the last 30 shots), his were doing the same or worse.  Oh well, that’s archery.

So, Congrats to everyone!  Kenzie, Squirrel and I shooting in our first ever competition!  It was fun and we will be doing it again….only with better results (I hope, I’m working on my game).

Monday came around quickly and Bob and I processed a bag of 50 rats that he had stored in his freezer from his days of trapping before I got started.  Today will be another rat day with the last of the rats from the freezer (another 50).  Once all of them are on stretchers, the season of rat caught will be done.  Bob started working over the traps yesterday, fixing them for next season and putting them in bags.  When the rats are finished drying on the stretchers our plan is to put them in bags and freezing them.  We have decided if we can’t get at least $6 straight through for them, it will be worth it to freeze them and try to sell them next year.  The price of rats is down because of several reasons….Oil prices in Russia, the world sanctions put on Russia for their invasion of Ukraine,  the flood of ranch raised mink during the past several auctions and I’m sure there are other factors suppressing the wild fur market.  Whatever the real reason, the price for rats is “in the tank” right now and a high dollar right now might get you $4 p/rat.  That price would barely cover our costs of trapping the rats, yet alone put any money in our pockets.  It is worth it to freeze them and hope the price comes up next year.

Ok!  I’m caught up now!  By the way “pi” has not paid off yet!

Bears Butt

March 18, 2015

Written on March 18th, 2015 , Archery stuff, Daily Trapping Events | Stories, Ramblings & Random Stuff From an Old Mountain Man is proudly powered by WordPress and the Theme Adventure by Eric Schwarz
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Just some of my old stories, new stories, and in general what is going on in my life.