By: Bears Butt

Our hunting camp is not any different than most hunting camps, we have our traditions just like others have theirs.  One thing for sure that we share with all the rest and that is our desire to have a safe and fun time out hunting and camping.

Inspired by a lady who was questioning Half Cocked on a Facebook posting he and Dry Dog had put up as they were putting together some kill jugs for this years hunt.

dogandhalfcockedminis                                                                                                                                            (photo courtesy of Dry Dog and Half Cocked)

This is a story about “THE KILL JUG”.

Way back in the beginning of time, well, the beginning of our time hunting with muzzleloaders at least.  We started a tradition of having a shot of whiskey, or whatever makes you “grimace” (shake uncontrollably) when you drink it, after killing our buck.  Around the camp fire the evening of the kill, the shooter would tell his story and then toast to that success by drinking what was made available.  It began as a fifth of whiskey that was set aside for the occasion and expanded over the years to a mini-bottle of whiskey or some other form of alcoholic drink, adorned with the year of the hunt and each hunter received one that was in camp.  Whether the contents were drank in celebration of a kill or not, the bottle was tied to their beaver sharn and became another token and story of its own.



Empty bottles are highly prized, but often as not, the hunter just wasn’t able to put his tag on an animal that year.  All good things come in time.

As our camp grew in size and numbers of hunters, the purchasing of mini-bottles became an expensive ordeal for anyone to purchase and make up for the camp.  And so, we went back to a single bottle of “nasty juice” for the lucky hunters to partake of (back washes are un-heard of in our camp).  The bottle was in camp and near the bag of “betting money” collected for those who thought they could bag the biggest buck during the hunt (another story), and at the end of the day, it was brought out and a celebration had toasting the big bucks of the day.


Everyone who had filled their tags would tell their story and then take a big horn off the bottle and hand it to the next guy.  A fun time for sure.

As more time went on, the camp remained a large body, over 20 people in camp each year but not all were hunters.  There is just something about going camping with a large group of fun people that just has to happen every year.  And even if you don’t choose to hunt you are still welcome to come and enjoy the camaraderie and the festivities of the camp.


The past couple of years has found Dry Dog and Half Cocked delivering individual mini-bottles again.  I think as they ride their motor cycles during the summer they find good deals on mini-bottles and with their big hearts and desire to make sure everyone has an individual momento of the hunt, they make them up and give them to the camp folks.  Each year the momento changes indicating the new year and often times has another token of the hunt adorned on the bottle as well.  Last year (2015) I think they were not only giving a mini-bottle kill jug, but also one symbolizing “finding a cure for cancer”.  Cancer has affected nearly all of us in one form or another.

After a few years one beaver sharn can have enough adornments on it that the owner could carry on a week long story telling about each of the items found on that sharn.  Each mini-bottle symbolizes a full year of ownership and participation in the muzzleload hunts the Willow Creek Free Trappers have been on.  Of course some years have multiple momentos such as is the case when one or more of the group draws a special limited entry hunt tag.  Not only does someone produce a kill jug, but there is usually something else that is special and pertaining to that particular hunt.  Beaver Sharns carry all those momentos.

Well, if you need more information about the Kill Jugs, I guess you will just have to corner one of us and over a drink or two find out first hand just how it all works.  In the meantime PROST!


September 25, 2016

Bears Butt




Written on September 25th, 2016 , Hunting Stories

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Just some of my old stories, new stories, and in general what is going on in my life.