Rain Today

So not a post about bushcraft directly but about Rain in Texas.  For the first time in a long long time we are getting rain all day, and fairly heavy rain.  Even though we are in the midst of a drought that has been going on for several years we are facing flash flood warnings.

Its important in bushcraft to know your environment and here in Texas even though the rain tends to be sparse we need to remember that when it comes, it tends to come in large amounts.  So remember if there is rain in the forecast be careful where you camp. Stay away from low areas that are prone to flooding during the heavy rains, and don’t try to cross fast moving water.  Be safe and enjoy the fact we are getting some very needed rain.

Saw Comparison and Review

Here we are testing some saws that we have including the saw donated by Kutmaster which we will be giving away. Some saws are cheap, some moderately expensive, some endorsed by celebrities we test them all on the same wood and see how they do.

Jalapeño Dove Poppers

Bill and I went Dove hunting this past weekend.  This was my first time, Bill’s second.  After a long, HOT day we came home with lots of knowledge on what to do different next time, but more importantly we got 5 doves.  I took them home to try and figure out how I would prepare them.  I decide to start with something simple, something that most hunters do with there Dove. Jalapeño Dove Poppers!

What you see below is what i brought home from the hunt.IMG_3264The next thing to do is to get the breast off the bone.  They really just peel right off with very little effort.  As you can see here in this video.

I now have 10 nice Dove Breasts.IMG_3268

Now your going to take some Jalapeños and core them.  So cut off the end, and cut them in half.  Then use your fingers to slide the seeds out of the middle.  Be careful, if you dont’ ware gloves while you do this, you need to really wash your hands.  Otherwise your going to hurt yourself if you touch your eyes.IMG_3271 IMG_3274

Then you can fill them up with Cream cheese.IMG_3275

Now your going to put the Dove breast over the Jalapeño and then wrap with bacon.  You will want to use a wet toothpick to hold it all together.  Take a look at the video below to see how I did it.

 

Now I know most people will cook these on the grill.  Due to the fact that it was 98 degrees outside I decided to cook them in the oven to see how that would work.  Put them into a glass dish and put them into a 400 degree oven.  I cooked them for 30 min.IMG_3281

They came out delicious.  Just need to make sure that we get more next time.IMG_3288

Swiss Engineer Rucksack Review

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So I have been using the swiss army ruck for most of the summer and I have to say I really love the pack.  It has an internal metal frame, leather straps and steel buckles and a leather lumbar support to keep the pack off your back and let air flow in between you back and the pack.  The pack is a great size for 1-3 days out in the bush, it is smaller than an alice pack in volume and has on exterior pouch.  The bag is rubberized canvas and while not water proof due to the way the pack closes, it is very very water resistant.

I took the bag to Hawaii and in the hot and humid weather it was a great day pack.  It kept the stuff we needed dry with the frequent rain and the airflow along my back was wonderful especially with the high humidity.

I have used the bag for a few overnighters and it has worked great.  The lack of exterior attachments for small pouches is the only major drawback.  I am used to being able to attach a pouch via the alice system or with a Molle setup.  There are some small leather loops on the outside of the bag but I have yet to find a good way to attach anything to it.

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I have added a small haversack to my kit to carry the few extras when I take this bag out.  My idea for this bag was to move from a modern military style setup to a more traditional 18/19th centerury style setup.  Kind of a hybrid modern take on the old ways similar to Dave Canterbury 21st Century long-hunter series. You can watch the videos on this at this link 21st Century Longhunter Series     

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The bag is very tough, it has a leather bottom and the canvas is very heavy as well.  It is an open bucket style pack like the Alice packs. The buckles and leather straps harken back to a day when things were made to last.   Much like the Duluth packs everyone raves about, but at  a much lower cost.  The pack can be found on the internet from 20-90 dollars depending on condition and availability.  Another great thing about the pack is that even though it is military surplus it does not look like it is.  So if you are wanting to experiment with an older style pack and don’t want to break the bank to do it give it a look.

If you want to check one out try here http://www.keepshooting.com/swiss-engineer-rucksack.html

They are selling for around 22 bucks.

What to take when traveling by plane

So I was recently able to take a wonderful vacation to Hawaii with my beautiful wife.  We got to spend two glorious weeks in the islands and while there we were able to do some hiking.  Before the trip I decided to pack some basic supplies for our hikes and at the time I though I was taking all I needed.  Well after the trip was over I found my self re evaluation what I took and what I wish I had on the trip.

The real difficulty here comes from having to check your luggage and not being able to carry everything on your person when on a plane.  I was worried before the trip that I might lose the luggage and then lose the tools I took as well.  This worry helped dictate what I took and what I left.

My every day carry knife is  a swiss army knife, or a lock blade folder, of which I have several to chose from and a leatherman wave multitool.  I wanted to have a knife with me on the trip but I did not want to lose one of my better knives so I took a cheap but serviceable folder my Gerber bear grylls folding lock blade.  I chose this blade for a few reasons, the most importat of which is it is cheap and would not cost much to replace.  But the other reasons were that it was serviceable and utilitarian and also is bright orange which is easier to see if it is dropped.  Looking back I really should have packed my Swiss Army Knife, it has tools on it I needed on the trip including a pair of scissors which I had to buy while traveling.

The rest of the kit consisted of my Adventure Medical Kits S.O.L. Scout Kit which contains:

  • A Dry Bag
  • 50″ of 2″ wide duct tape
  • A button compass
  • a firelight fire striker
  • a small fishing kit
  • a survival space blanket
  • signal mirror
  • rescue whistle
  • and some quick tinder

To this I added a bandana, a lighter and a magnesium fire starter with striker.

I also packed my boonie hat for the trip and a few extra bandanas.  So I was not completely unprepared.  There are a few things I wish I had brought, in going so minimal I missed some basics.  I should have had a poncho and checked the weather and packed a light coat.

The main thing I learned on this trip is I need a complete but small bushcraft/survival kit to take when I travel, something that does not cost a fortune but is good solid gear.  I also need to make a place for it in my checked bag and not worry about the carry one.  Thats why it needs to not cost a fortune, in case it gets lost it wont break the bank to replace it.