Brad Watson, who was on at least one of the hunts below, has just gotten his story “Eykelboom” published in the New Yorker, and it is FINE haunting story. Is the New Yorker publishing better fiction recently? I say yes, from all sorts of odd and good writers– I know it is not northeastern- chauvinist anymore at least for contributors, but lately it has been on a roll. Now you can see (quite recently) Thomas McGuane with a strong if terrifying story, and people in translation you have not heard of– and Brad, an Alabaman (well, I think he was born in Mississippi) with good guns and several books all of which you should read (I took the liberty of linking to a favorite collection above), who loves food and teaches at Laramie and hangs out with scientists  and philosophers.

You should always check Bedlam Farm for updates in the carriage horse fight and other battles against AR fanatics. Relevant posts here and here and here and here and…

I want one of these.

A feathered lizard is still a lizard. Think BIRD!

Check out Hillmap, then go here to see it applied, in this instance for finding grouse. HT Lucas Machias.

Help Joan Didion.

Peter Matthiessen (and John Cole) were outdoor writers, if only as undergraduates. And shot not only crows, but raptors! Of course back then everybody did. (Pic from Jonathan Hanson).

A fine gun site from Russia. Great illos, many of things you don’t see here…

Mechanical Houbara??!! Interesting but I am not sure if I approve.


  1. So much to comment on! But I'll try and be brief and therefore merciful…..yes, the Brad Watson tale was haunting–definitely one of those Southern-oriented "right purty writers", which I often relate to, having grown up in the South in a neighborhood very like what was described in the story–old men landowners resenting trespassing kids and all! Though I must admit it were only them YANKEE landowners that resented such. Plus LOTS more DOG influences, and far more adolescent tribalism was part of my upbringing…..The Pony Ride Persecution–what can one say? I often think radical AR's are also just LAZY(along with wanting humans to have zero interactions with any other species), and don't want to go to the effort to judge each individual case on it's own merits–just OUTLAW THEM ALL! Not too mention most of the ignorant urban dolts wouldn't have the foggiest notion WHAT good horse care actually was! Ought to make a movie with Mister Ed and Francis the mule taking on the AR'S! That would be a HOOT!…..You want one of those(no doubt) horrendously expensive "Beast" Ebikes over a good 4-wheeled ATV? The ATV seems far more practical a choice to me–but then, I guess you could get both. IF you sell a bunch more books…….DINOSAUR TOYZ! Boy, I could write a MUCH longer article than that guy did! Whiny, nit-picking BASS-TURDS! So THAT'S WHY all the cool new dinosaur toys are so goddam expensive! Stupid-arse collectors squibbling over them like artwork! Goddamm cool-as-heck tyrannosaurus in our gift shop here I'd LOVE to have is frigging THIRTY BUX! Even the WAL-MART prices are outrageous! Yeah, fergit THAT! WHO-IN-HELL spends THIRTY BUX on a little plastic dinosaur for themselves or their kids???? Another case of–if they'd drop the price, they'd sell a LOT more and make a LOT more money in the end–can't be too many nit-picky art snob collectors of plasic dinos out there, right? And those fellers NEED to be PATIENT–evolution takes TIME! At least THERE ARE dino toys with FEATHERS out now–it is a good start(I have a few cheapo-lesser-quality ones myself)!….and falcon LURE COURSING? Well, okay, it IS purty neato–I'd MUCH rather have one of those realistic bird gizmos to fly around than a KITE or a model AIRPLANE–but not for my falcon(did I have one)–it's not REAL hunting! Just like lure coursing for hounds is not REAL hunting! Whose gonna EAT that gizmo? To me, that's the BIGGEST reason WHY one hunts–to EAT!!!!! But it IS an incredible device! Good practice and exercise perhaps(just as lure coursing is), but no real substitute–just another case of gadgets over real interaction with real critters(sigh)…..L. B.

  2. "Mechanical Houbara??!! Interesting but I am not sure if I approve."

    I'll second that. I remember hearing Frank Beebe (and I'll admit up front that I'm not necessarily a fan) talking about mechanical quarry at a NAFA meet–Lamar in '01, I think it was–and being saddened at the idea. Not just because it seems a poor substitute for the real thing, but because the rationale given was that it would someday become necessary, and I was not–am not–willing to concede that we will inevitably run out of wild quarry, or be barred access to it. Conceding defeat seems the surest way to bring it about, and particularly on this topic. I can already hear the "anti"s: "Why do you need to hunt real, living birds, when there are perfectly adequate, cruelty-free mechanical substitutes available?" Talk about missing the point…

  3. Mark: my sentiments exactly.


    I may send a note.But, first: one of the first things that attracted me to the Beast is that its price is MUCH lower than that of a new four-wheeler. My gunsmith friend John Besse has a small four-wheeler with a box that wold be ideal, but there is not a chance of my being ale to afford a new one. The beast comes in four configurations, and either of the middle two might work. I also like the solar aspect — they wold probably be easy to charge in New Mexico.

    My biggest worry about it is that it is a bike, and balance is always an issue. But many people with PD ride regular bicycles. On the other hand I wold not buy one without driving one, and there are a whole lot more four=wheelers down here than Canadian eco-bikes (;-))

    There are a lot of good, cheap dino toys in Amazon, like those from the Carnegie Museum — I paid $7 for my current favorite, a well-feathered Oviraptor. Many are available on Amazon.

    Write and I'll give you more links. the best thing is that there is beginning to be a fair selection of properly feathered dinosaurs too, though there is still a long way to go.

  4. Steve: yeah, I've got A LOT of dinos from Amazon, and half-price from our zoo gift shop, and visits to museums(the Natural Sciences Museum in my homestate of North Carolina, in the capital Raleigh, is the BEST museum outside Smithsonian I've visited ever!)among many other places–every niche in my house is FILLED with them, so I actually NEED this T-Rex like a hole-in-the-head!–The really super nice ones that I still covet are ridiculously beyond my means. Even if I was financially filthy rich I WOULD NOT pay such prices as a matter of principle! Enough to tempt me to shop-lift! Can you just see the headlines? "Fifty-Five year old man caught shoplifting toy dinosaur"!….And I'm surprised that E-bike is cheaper! If(maybe WHEN) I was getting an ATV, I'd definitely try the "used" route–check some add like "Grandmother's ATV for sale, only used to hunt on Sundays!"…..L.B.

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