Wednesday, April 25, 2012

10 Ways to Know...

... that it is going to be an interesting opening morning of Spring Gobbler Season.

10. In checking the weather for opening day you see that your hunting location is listed in a Winter Weather Advisory, listing 8" to 12" of heavy wet snow.

9. Going into to opening morning, you know you only have roughly an hour and a half to hunt before you have to leave for class.

8. Just in case, you decided to dig out those insulated bibs and jacket for late season deer hunting and was ecstatic you set them out the next morning.

7. Waking up the next morning to look outside and see nothing, it looked the same as it did the night before. On closer inspection, as you're sliding down the stairs, you can see those steps were icy, just not wet.

6.  Following a WV State Road Salt truck all the way to your dirt road turn off.

5. Upon arriving on top of the mountain you realize the storm didn't miss you it was just starting with 3" on snow already on the ground.

4. Realizing that when doing #8 you should have laid out snow camo instead.

3. While walking you realize your turkey blind has turned into an igloo and all the zippers are frozen shut.

2. After hearing someone shoot one close, on a neighboring property, you finally get a few to start talking to you. Bad news, you look at the time and realized you are running five minutes late to get to class.

1. And finally this was my view for the morning...

As you have read through this little comical count down, opening morning wasn't the best for conditions, but it was great to get out and be able to hunt again. Between finals and moving this week, I hope to make it out another time or two this week, but look for many more updates in the weeks to come!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Opening Day of Spring Gobbler 2012

It is opening day of the 2012 Spring Gobbler Season!

Good luck all the West Virginia hunters hitting the woods this morning. With the weather forecast, I hope this isn't what everyone is looking today!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Huntography Season 2 Trailer

Earlier this week Rudy of Huntography released the trailer to DeerTour – Huntography Season 2, to say the least, it looks to be another great season! For those of you on Twitter, you might recognize more than one of these hunters; to see everyone involved with this past season's Deer Tour, you can find a list here. If you are interested in following Huntography on a hyperlocal level, you can follow me over at West Virginia Huntography.  For more information and to see where Deer Tour is coming this year make sure to follow me on Twitter, you just never know, West Virginia might make on to Deer Tour 2012. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Trail Cam Tuesday - April 17, 2012

It has been a while since anyone has seen a Trail Cam Tuesday. I have contemplated changing it a bit or even ending it as a whole, but I just couldn't do it. I have decided I will no long be releasing it weekly, it will be directly linked to the active pictures being taken, trail cam pictures that are being submitted, and lastly will be a new twist I am adding. This new twist will have everything to deal with trail cameras still, it will just be more informational, it will consist of new products, information and how-tos/advise, and anything that involves trail cameras. Feel free to leave your comments below on your thoughts about the new change(s) to TCT,  love or hate, I want to hear it. If you have a suggestion of your own leave it and I'll gladly take it into consideration. Now what everyone is really here for though, the pictures. 

Even frozen does need to eat.
Not sure what this fox was looking for but
made multiple laps sniffing around.
This isn't the big sow with the white patch on her chest from
last year, but it is still a decent size bear for April.

Looks like these does are getting a little feisty.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Harnesses For Hunters

My good friend and fellow blogger Will created the Harnesses For Hunters project a while back. Harnesses For Hunters is attempting to prevent tree stand accidents and fatalities by supplying hunters with  harnesses; for more information on this you can check out his site here. That's not actually what I am here for, he has taken this on by himself and has managed to get a few great partners but he is still shipping this harnesses out on his own. He recently just got new decals in for his blog, The Will to Hunt, as well as the Harness For Hunters project and all proceeds are being donated to the mailing costs of the harnesses. If you want to order the decals you can click here or if you would like to donate to the project you can find out where to send you extra harnesses here.

Friday, April 13, 2012

New & Improved Pickled Ramps

The New & Improved Pickled Ramps
For those of you that have been following this blog for a while know that about this time last year I was looking for a way to persevere my ramps longer. While on a fishing trip last year I found a way but for more on that story you can read it here. After doing some brief research I found a recipe, from none other than Martha Stewart, for Pickled Ramps. This was the recipe I used last year, it was good but I thought with more research, asking some friends, and a little tweaking on my part I could make it better. That is exactly what I did and here it is:

  • +/- 2 lbs Ramps (Cleaned up and trimmed with only the stem and bulb intact)
  • 1 cup White Wine Vinegar
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1 teaspoon Mustard Seed
  • 1 teaspoon Coriander Seed
  • 1 teaspoon Fennel Seed
  • 1 teaspoon Black Peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher Salt

Step One: Blanch the ramps for thirty seconds to a minute.

Step Two: After blanching the the ramps, drain them and place them into previously prepped mason jar(s). I prefer to use pint jars as this recipe will roughly four full pint jars, but any size jar or jars will do. Also to add a little more favor, at this point I add one whole dried chile pepper to the jar as well as the ramps.

Step Three: Combine the vinegar, salt, sugar, and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil.

Step Four: Add the crushed red pepper, mustard seeds, coriander seeds, black peppercorns, and fennel seeds to the boiling pickling brine.

Step Five: Pour the pickling brine over the ramps in the mason jar. At this point there are two choices to make, you can seal the jar(s) and place them in the fridge to cool and you can continue with the proper "hot bathing" technique. If placed directly into the fridge they will last for a few week up to a few months, if properly canned they can last substantially longer.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Cash's Ramp Salt

Ramps straight out of the food processor.
Almost two weeks ago now I took to Twitter with a question of what else could I do with all the ramps I had dug. I know a lot of different ways to cook them in entrees or side dishes or even preserve them, but there is always something new to learn and try and that is exactly what I found. I had always thought and wondered about dehydrating ramps but never followed through. Come to find out this isn't something that abnormal. A reader, @Cashwv06, started tweeting with me and asked if I had tried "Ramp Salt," this is something I had not  tried or heard of. There was only one thing left to do, get the recipe and try it. To say the least this is a very simple recipe but it has limitless possibilities. I have already used this on steaks, pizza, popcorn, and even my eggs.


  • 1 part Salt
  • 3 parts Processed Ramps


Step One: Dehydrate previously cleaned ramps. This part is to be used as a guideline, I dehydrated my ramps (four trays) for eight to ten hours at 125 degrees.

Step Two: After ramps are crisp to the touch, transfer them to a food processor or blender. Proceed to process the ramps until they are a powdered / finely crunched mixture. If there any large pieces or debris left in the mixture remove so that it will not be in final mixture.

Step Three: Combine three parts of the processed ramps to one part salt (Example - I mixed 3/4 cup of ramps with 1/4 cup of salt). Mix together thoroughly and store to use on everything! I prefer to store mine in a pint jar which makes for easy access but most anything that is air tight will do.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Spicy Ramp Burgers

It's a little messy but it's our
makeshift fishing kitchen.
- Cheat River, Preston County, WV
As I wrote about yesterday, the ramps around here were ready a lot sooner than normal. This week will be filled with the recipes I listed yesterday as well as a few pictures. First on the menu this week are my Spicy Ramp Burgers, they were taste tested on a fishing trip a few weeks and to say the least there was not any leftovers. But there were a few complaint of being to full to continue fishing. I'll take that as a complement / approval. If you remember last year, I made traditional "Ramp Burgers," this recipe is very similar but I promise it will give a new flavor to an old favorite nor will it dissapoint.

  • 1 lbs. of Ground Beef or Venison
  • 3 to 5 Ramps (bulbs, stalks, and greens included)
  • 1 Large or 2 Small Jalapeno Pepper(s)
  • Salt & Ground Black Pepper (Preferred Amount)
  • 1 teaspoon - Ground Sage
  • 1 Tablespoon - Worcestershire Sauce

Step One: Mince or finally chop the ramps (bulbs, stalks and greens) and jalapeno pepper(s)** and add to a large mixing bowl. 
**- To reduce the heat/spiciness of the burgers you can remove the seeds from the pepper(s) before mincing them. I have done this both ways, with the seeds removed there is more of a smoky, warm flavor while leaving the seeds in does provide a little more tangy, kick to the burgers. This is all based on personal preference of those eating the burgers and yourself.
Step Two: Combine the minced ramps and peppers and ground beef or venison to a mixing bowl and mix together. 

Step Three: Add the Worcestershire sauce, ground Sage, and Salt and Pepper to burger mixture. Mix until mixture is blended thoroughly.

Step Four: If needed you can make these burgers immediately, but for the best flavor allow the mixture to sit/marinade in the refrigerator for six to twelve hours. 

Step Five: Make into burger patties and grill/cook. If choosing to make these into Cheeseburgers,  Pepper Jack Cheese is recommended.
Additional Quick Tip: If make these or any burgers to-go, I always like to pre-make my patties and separate them with parchment/wax paper and place them all in a container in the cooler so that there is one less step to worry about at meal time nor is there anywhere near the mess to deal with along the riverbank. 

Monday, April 9, 2012

Early Ramps 2012

With an early spring, it has brought out the ramps roughly a month ahead of last year. Last year it wasn't even until April 10th when Cassie and I took Buster on a hike and started checking for ramps.  To date (this year), I have already attempted three new ramp recipes and  also made a few favorites for dinner (Cassie's Ramp Potatoes and Ramp Burgers). If you are new to this blog or have heard me rambling on twitter about ramps and are still questioning what they are you can find out more about them here in my previous post, " All Ramped Up!".

A few new recipes to look for this week:

  • Spicy Ramp Burgers
  • Cash's Ramp Salt
  • New & Improved Pickled Ramps

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Rent Huntography - Filming American's Hunters, One at a Time Now!!!

This was released yesterday from Huntography. For those of you that still haven't checked out Huntography - West Virginia you need to! Below is a press release with the new availability to rent Huntography - Filming American's Hunters, One at a Time. 2010.

"April 6, 2012 – More and more whitetail deer hunters are moving away from watching deer hunting shows on television and away from buying physical deer hunting DVD’s. The trend towards online viewing and mobile viewing cannot be ignored. For this reason, in addition to offering physical copies of DVD’s to own – for us old schoolers, I am starting to offer our deer hunting films for rent online.
This is similar to what many have experience when using Netflix or their cable and satellite providers video-on-demand functionality for movies. But for deer hunting videos, this is a great first step into getting more folks watching full length feature hunting films online. 
The ease of use, high quality image and affordable cost should be just what the doctor ordered.  
So if you haven’t purchased the 2011 Huntography Whitetail Deer Hunting DVD yet, Filming America’s Hunters, One at a Time, now is your chance to watch it right on your computer, in it’s entirety. 
All proceeds will go directly into the 2012 DeerTour production fund.
Support the movement, share the link with your friends and rent it today." 

If you haven't got to watch it, now's your chance, I highly recommend it! For more details and a preview check out then rental site here.
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