Friday, October 31, 2008

Copy Cats

I had one of my daughters that called me the other day and told me “Dad do you realize that you have a competitor, in this waterfowl blogging”. Of course I had no idea, of what she was talking about, so I asked for clarification, of her statement. So she explained there is another group of guys hunting on this Missouri river bottom, that have a blog. I said you mean there are copy cats out there. She said I don’t think they are copy cats, but they are writing storied about their hunts, too. So again I reminded her they were copy cats. She then said “you best read their reports before you put them down”. Then she went on to tell me that they are some hunters from North Omaha, Well really Blair, and she thought they worked at some small car dealer down in Blair. So I said “there professional tire kickers, you can’t trust those dudes” Again, she thought I should just get on their site and read some of their reports, they are really good writers and some of their stories have humor in them, and lots of pictures. So I asked, are the pictures “croped” and throughout the story or just on top. She said wherever they want them. Damn kids know just how to do all that fancy sh--a-stuff. She said they had a duck for a logo, and I reminded her, I had a picture of 79 Canada’s in a pile for a logo, and a character, of a duck, was stupid, and didn’t cut the mustard with me. Then she said they used names like SURESHOT & COMANDO, or something like that. She thought they were much cooler names that KILLER KARL, she is out of the will. Well, you know there is another case of being a copy cat. They are duck call names, and they copied them and Killer Karl is original, and there is only one of them and there is thousands of them calls. Bet their smoke pole don’t have a name like mine does. WAR EAGLE. They probably hunt with a Marlin bolt action goose gun. Probably thought Bill Callahan was a coach too.

So I begun to do a little investigating and I found out that they drive a new Dodge Pickup ‘whoopee’. Well I drive an old Dodge Van and it lets you know I am coming and it has plenty of experience, of getting me to and from the pits. Dodges are good at doing that. So maybe they have just a little class, if they like Dodges. Suppose they have a Chrysler Van too??

So then I went and check their site out, and I do have to say, I did enjoy reading their writings, so if you are a rocking chair hunter and enjoy reading about the real action, in the pits. I suggest you go to, their site and get another point of view of the “going ons” here in Burt County Nebraska. Their address is They hunt some sandbar up North of Kohler’s, also, I think you will enjoy their writing, even if they are COPY CATS.

Now to the serious side. Had good number of birds early, but no wind to make them work. I think there was 7 or 8 nice flocks of Specks, a flock of 30 Snows and Blues., along with just a few ducks. This was all before the wind come up. When the wind picked up, the birds stopped, with the exception of, right at noon, and then we seen the last flock of Specks. Also did have a couple of Green heads that really out smarted us and got in the pond unmolested.

One of these days we will have a hammering day again. Remember all the young people that are protecting us, in your prayers

Check back, please.
See Ya Carl

Thursday, October 30, 2008

A day of listening

We had a couple of guests today, Reed Kennedy, and Monte West joined us for the morning’s hunt. Wasn’t much of a shoot, we took one Canada.

For those of you don’t know just who these two are I will explain. Monty West is the "W" in the K&W decoy company. When I first started hunting out there, Monty was the lead duck caller. Monty also made and sold the Monte West duck and goose calls. We still use Mont's goose calls. Reed Kennedy is the man who assisted Ralph with getting his book (Born to Hunt) published and on the market.

So setting down and keeping your ear, glued to the speaker, listening to the conversations going on over in the boss’s pit, was an easy task. I jacked up my chair where I could see, but was still under the straw, and just listened. I have had the honor to hunt with Ralph, since 1970, and have lived some of the funny stories that they talk about, but Monty goes back almost an additional 30 years of hunting there. I am all ears when they get on some of the old river stories. Of course the river days took place before the corp. messed up the river and there was sand bars where the birds rested and hunters hunted. The story that always comes up, is on slow days they would have football games, on the sand bar. I don’t know if they took a football along or did they use something else for a football. I have asked and never really got an answer that I trusted as being true.

There are names that come up that I remember and names I can not put a face to. I will have to confess, that these stories remain pretty constant, as to the happening and the results of. Regardless of the story, it sure makes a short day out of a slow day like today. I was disappointed when they said they had to get heading back down the road, toward home.

The though of what they claimed were blinds, make me shiver just thinking of how cold you could get, even with the clothing we have today. I know just how cold it has to get to have pack ice in the river, and they were hunting in a willow blind, when the river run full of pack ice. There was no thinsulate or underarmor in those days, or other modern, insulating garments, to help ward off the cold. How did they handle it is a mystery to me. They even used big chunks of ice to make blinds out of. Well wind don’t blow through ice, so I think I could handle that, but willow branches stuck in the sand, don’t stop the wind.

In my eyes, today was not an uneventful day but really a very eventful day. Monty said he was coming back in a few days so we will have chapter two. They didn’t get into some of the upps shoots, they had. Some of then they don’t want out, so it is special when you get to hear one. They were good law bidding citizen, but you know we all speed sometime or other, and they had there slip up in hunting too.

Remember the troops in your prayers tonight and please check back

See Ya
Killer Karl

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

QUESTIONS, brings back some great memories

Had some feed back from some hunters, that are not sure of, my honesty on Sundays shoot. This brings up another shoot, that took place on Nov.3 1974. This was one of my daughters birthday, and I was supposed to come to town, early, for her birthday party. Well I remember her 10th birthday, way better, than she remembers it. See this was before there was phones in the blind, and even if there would have been one, I am not sure I would have had the guts to use it. Good thing that a women, can only get so mad, cause mine reached that point that day, and when I am asked what she said, I always answer "if you leave out the cuss words, not a damn thing."

There is still a dispute between Ralph and I as why things happened they way they did, but I am sticking to my story. This is what I remember; there were more blinds on the East side of the Lake than there were on the West side. Any way, we open the day on the East side, and we were shooting ducks, but there was some high flying Snows and Blues. Ralph kept saying, "If we were only on the other side we could kill some of those Geese". This is where the dispute between RK and me. I say there was not enough room for all of us to go to the other side, and he has no reason, why we all did not all move at that time. I am guessing at about 10:00 Ralph and his hunters moved to the West side. This crew, was from Minneapolis, they had been hunting for a few days and could only hunt until noon and then was heading back home.

The geese were in small bunches of 5 to 50, and one flock right after another. At almost any time you could see 10 to 15 flocks, and all were very high coming, and this is the way they flew throughout the day.

The crews on the East side continued to drop a few ducks, while the crews on the west worked on geese. At that magic time for us: (12:08), they had talked a small flock of S&B’s, into range, and took 5 blues. The remaining 3 rolled over us on the East side and we, dumped them into the lake. This crew from Minnesota packed up, for there trip back home. Ralph, came around and told us guys if we were smart, we would pack our gear and move over to the other side. My story again: because there was enough room for all of us now. So we all pack our gear and moved. We had only got settled in and guns loaded, when the first, "Lets Go" was given. That was the last time everybody was in the pits when the next shot was called. A few guys would pick up the close ones and get back in, and someone would go for the one that sailed out a few yards, when they started to "call" you would lay down. When the next flock would start to decoy, all the flocks that was in sight, would start decoying too. They were so high that before that flock was in range we would have a dozen or more flock in a tornado or spiral, getting down to us. When the shot was called, a crew would run out and pick up birds and the crew that was on the run from the preceding flock would charge back in the pits for there turn to shoot. This is the way the day went, all the way, to sunset. Total geese was 74, and all shot after 12:00 noon.

Of course there would be a sailor or two every once in a while and I remember being with Ron Jenkins, another "weekend hunter" from Blair, making a trip, picking up flyer's, that made it south of the east-west road south of us. We had cars setting on that road just watching, and they even help gather up and locate downed birds. Some hunters from Kopecky Hunting, pack up their gear and moved south for a closer look. We found out later that the only geese that got shot at that day in Burt county, was at Kohler’s lake. The next day, I had hunter, who hunted south of us, asked me, what we were shooting at because they had not seen a bird that was low enough to decoy. We had, and logged some great memories, that is going to last, me and others, for a lifetime. If you doubt this story, just ask Ralph and I can give you other names about a November 3rd hunt

No hunters today so had time for an old story. Say a prayer for all our HERO who are protecting our rights.

See ya Carl

Monday, October 27, 2008

The day after, the blast

More on Yesterday’s hunt
The picture above is of My Grandson, myself and Ralph. This is part of the kill from yesterday, because some hunters, had fled the area, with game, before we got around to pictures. You can get a feeling as to how the wind was blowing, by Kyle’s hair and Ralph and my stance.
We did not know just how lucky we were, with yesterday hunt. Found out today that not many birds were harvested in the area on Sunday. Had some hunter say they never seen any ducks, other complained they were to busy trying to keep decoys and gear in place, and were not looking. I must say we had our problems, with decoys too. In fact RK spotted one more decoy today, on the way out from the blinds. Will have to get it picked up and back in the spread, tomorrow.

Now to today’s action
Well the wind was down, but the bird movement also slowed some too. Hardly any geese, and the ducks were so hard to see in a cloudless sky. Got into ducks two times today. Both bunches were down wind shots, I think. The second bunch I had food in my hand and if it comes down to me dropping food to shoot, or staying down and staying fat, I choose the later. So I don’t know just which way the last flock was flying. Every one agreed that the kill would not have changed anyway, so I guess that was okay. I do know there is a much better chance of harvesting more that one bird out of a flock on a wind like today’s, than it was in yesterday’s, hurricane .
Best get busy so will close.

Please remember the troops that serve us, in your prayers tonight
See ya Carl

Sunday, October 26, 2008

The smell of burning powder strill lingers at the south lake

Well the wind blew and the steel flew. We had a crew of just 13 today and they all left with big smiles on there face. A quick figure and I come up with, close to 2.5 cases of shell were emptied into the wild blue yonder today.

It takes a lot of ammo, when you are shooting at waterfowl in a wind of 35 MPH plus. However we dumped plenty of Ducks and Canada’s into the pond. I think we were into Canada’s 5 maybe 6 times today, and the ducks were something else. We had to decoy 75 to 100 flocks of ducks, and we didn’t get into half of them, but we got into our share. We seen maybe as many Mallards today, as we have in any one month, of any of the past several seasons. It was so refreshing, to see flocks of 20, 30, 50, even some flock bigger that that, of all Mallards working the decoy spread. It may sound impossible, but it look like that 60% were green heads too. The wind made it impossible to harvest but a few birds out of each flock. The duck gets out in a hurry when ever you are shooting at them, in a wind like we had today, maybe the first 2 to 3 guys up may have a good shot and then it was trying to catch up with the bird, and burn powder. Love burning that powder.

I know that almost every hunter left with almost a limit of both ducks and geese. We had a couple of young hunter in the pits today, so you know they will have some war stories to tell in school tomorrow, and I am sure, some of the hunters will turn in fishermen , and just may expand something, too. Well it will be memorable trip for several, of them I am sure. What will remain into my memory bank, is the fact that we seen Mallards, and more Mallards. I was convinced that we were never going to see them again. Back 20 years ago when we had big crowds, this would have been one of the 100 plus days, on ducks. I do have to confess that in those days there would never be a day that you would harvest 30 Canada’s, like we did today. Oh, how times change and so do the birds, we see way more Canada’s now and for the past several years, way fewer ducks. Sure hope this is not the only day we see this number of the Green head. That was so exciting to see them again. The only thing I have to complain about was the time it took to dress the two limits I brought home tonight. Thanks Kev for the help. I will never tell him this, but if He had not give me a hand I would be still dressing birds yet. Must get this posted and gets the birds package.

So check back and keep the Troops in your bedtime prayers,

See Ya Carl

Thursday, October 23, 2008

We have not drown

Even though there is not much to report in the shooting department, I need to update this Report, just so you don’t think I have died or given up.

We have just gone through, a monsoon season, here in Nebraska. Not for sure just how much rain we have received in the past couple days, because most people, had turned their rain gauges over, in anticipation, of winter. But it is wet here. The lake got so full that it almost got into the pits. The lake was running over the dike on the north end, when the Boss went out to check on things. He then pulled the plug and let it drain for most of yesterday afternoon and all night last night. That is over 12 hours with a 18 inch stream, flowing, to get it down to an except-able level again, is a lot of water.

All the ducks we seen today were wearing life jackets. On the way back to town, I seen two farmers, here on the bottom, that were busy, constructing Arc’s, and the women were gathering, up the livestock. Well maybe that is just a little over the top, but we are wet. Reports of 3 to 4 inches of rain on the bottom. I have been asking for another fall of this type, before I hang up the ol’ smoke pole, for good. Well it has arrived. There are many a fields, that may require a freeze up before harvest. There will be the "12 inch deep tracks with 6 inches of water standing in them", that I have wished for, for several years. Now if the ducks would only comply, it would be a great thing. But then some poor sole would start to believe, I knew something, and that has never happened before.

Well this enough B S, for today. So please check back and remember the troops in your prayers tonight.

See Ya

Monday, October 20, 2008

There was some powder burn't today

Did not have a posting for over the weekend, but the weekend was very slow, and nothing happened, that needed reporting.

However, today was just a little different. Had plenty of birds, and we did decoy some, but not near what we should have. As far as to what was on the move, There was a good push of Cacklers, Whitefronts, Mallards. Bluebills. Along with seeing, ample number of Canada’s. We were not to flush with guns, but we should have limited out on both Ducks and Canada’s. We did take a couple of limits of ducks and 3 big Canada’s. Today, was one of them days if it wasn’t for bad luck you had no luck at all, especially on the geese. We should have been into at least 4 maybe 6 more flocks, more than we were. But there has been many days, in the past, I have hunted that I would gladly trade for an exciting days like we had today.

Again this morning the walk was another moonlight walk. We did have a bad odor for awhile, then we got a shot and pushed a big flock, of then stinking pelicans, out of the lake. They were setting up wind of us, and there are many animals in this world, that have a better odor, than they do.

Well enough complaining for one day so remember, all the young men and women that serve this great country, in you bed time prayers.

See Ya Carl

Friday, October 17, 2008

Two days reports

Well I have to apologize to you about last evening report. We shut down real early and I done something’s, I needed to get done and then forgot to put out a report. Had a Grandkid in a football game last night and was setting in the stands, when it come to me that I had forgot all about, getting this report out. So you get two days in one report.

We had got into a couple of Canada’s, and took one and had harvested a duck too, but the outlook was pretty bleak. The lake was looking like a mirror and Ralph was wanting to make a big change to the spread, and thought it was a good day, to make this move. Of course he did not want any help, but wanted us off the lake while he was doing the work. There was only one member so we sent him home, and other things took over our lives. I do like the new look, and it may just prove very fruitful.

Now, to Fridays report. This one is more exciting.

We woke up to rain, when I went down town at 5:15 it was still raining, but before we got our breakfast ate and out to the lake, the rain had stopped and the clouds had moved out, making for, a great moon lite walk, into the pits. We were hearing Geese moving around and they were so low that the big bright moon, was casting a shadow, as they flew over the lake. We had ducks, in the area too and before it was legal to take them. Once it was time to shoot all the geese had left the area and the ducks were getting fewer too. R K and his bride had an appointment with the eye Dr. so his plans was, to pull out before most of us had our second cup of coffee, poured. This makes it amateur day, for us. We took full advantage of it too. I must tell you before Ralph, left the pits, we had thumped a couple of duck, with just that many shots. He was shocked by this display of deadly shooting, however he just may deny, that this ever happened but we have him out numbered, claiming that it is true. After he was gone we took another duck.

Lyle had some commitments as well so he left about an hour after RK had, so that left just one member and me still aboard the ship. I need to inject that we had a very light wind out of the south east, at about 5 MPH, but the radio was forecasting, we were to get a wind from the North later in the afternoon. Well about 11:00 it started to switch around, by 12:30 we were experiencing a nice wind of around 10MPH from the north northwest. Along with this wind we also had some birds moving, that provided the two of us, with an entertaining afternoon. We did not get a shot but did spot several bunches of ducks as well as a nice flock of geese. We abandon ship about 3:00.

This is personal, but I have been getting several, inquiries as to my new knee. Things are going just great with it. No pain, and I have been walking in mud, and am so pleased with it so far. Thanks for your concern.

Will let you go. But as always please say a prayer for all the troops tonight, in your bed tie prayer.

Please check back
See ya Carl.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Another shooting day

As we walked into the pits this morning, you could hear the Specks. They were either flying around the lake or there was almost a steady stream of them moving through. Once it got to be daylight it was apparent that there was a major migration of Specks going on. There also was phone calls, and the caller’s were saying the same thing was going on where they were. They did slow down some in the afternoon, but they were still flying when I was forced from the pits around 2:30.

Along with the Specks, we were seeing hundreds of Ducks. Both small and large flocks, as well as large and small ducks. We were into Canada’s two times before 8:15. The Canada’s I could not tell you if they were Locals or Migrator’s. I am guessing they were Migrator’s, because both flocks were smaller flocks than fly around here, prior to the season and out exercising. We were embarrassing low on hunter early but had several walk-ins that helped out before the day ended. I think there was 6 go-a-rounds on ducks and 3 on Canada’s, so all in all it was a very good day.

Sorry this so short but, this flu is hampering my writhing ability, along with my thinking.

So say a prayer for the troops and check back.

See Ya Carl

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A powder burning day

Mother nature was so good to us today. She started out with a great painting in the eastern skies. And then she provided us with a wonderful hunting day too.

The Heart Break Goose was on the move. We must have seen 12 to 15 flocks of Specks, through out the day. Had about a half dozen flocks that did a decoy job, but would never go all the way. They have so many ways to break your heart. The first bunch was a small flock of 8 and they almost made the big mistake, but some how got smart and left us setting and wondering, just what we did wrong. There was several flocks today, that numbered around the 20-30 bird size flock. They would swings us several times and then head on South. Never the less, they made the day, worth being there. In between flocks of the Specks we had Ducks. All kinds, including some Mallards. They were a little kinder to us, and gave us a few shots at them. I think we had 4 go-a-rounds on ducks and one go-a-round on a pair of Canada’s. Most of the guys had to lighten there shell load by at least a half a box, so that always means a good day when you shoot that many shells.

So far I think the boss is happy with the setup of the lake, but the jury don’t rule until we have a few North and Northwest winds.

The only predictions I am making this year is, that 40% of the birds that we harvest with a Northerly wind, will splash down, on the shore line. Shore line is: the distance from blinds to water edge, and the same distant out into the lake that far. So lets say it is 20 feet from blind to water and then 20 feet out into the lake too. The lake looks so good, and they sure have been right over us so far, but we have not had a north wind of any type. That is the forecast for tomorrow, as you would expect, I wouldn't miss tomorrow for nuttin. 10 to 15 MPH with gust to 25MPH.

I'll let you go. Remember as always Say a prayer for all out hero's in you prayers tonight.

See Ya Carl

Saturday, October 11, 2008


We arrived at the pits all full of anticipation, of a great shooting day. The temp was just a little above what you would call a great day for a duck hunt. Of course ducks hunters are always optimistic, and the curves mother nature are always taken in stride. We snuggled into the pits, loaded the smokepoles, poured the coffee readying ourselves for the first go around. Mother nature had us a little nervures, as she was droping some rain drops on our head and there was, a little lighting flashing in the thunderhead. that was passing just over head. Soon ol’Sol started poking his head above the horizon in the east and was brightening up the day. We were spotting a few teal flying by, just out of range. But things like this only make you think the day is turning into your favor. The conversations builds, as the day get brighter and you can see just who you are conversing with. You find out just what has happened in each others life since you last shared the pit. You are up dated on , all the lies about fish, they almost got into the boat, what this ones grandkid did, troubles someone had on a car trip, all the time scanning the skies for that thin line of birds coming your way. Stories were interrupted by, "are those ducks, geese or loons" , But that is all the fun of waterfowl hunting. If it was just, the shooting, you went hunting for, there would not be many blinds being occupied. So with all that said, I can only say we had a pretty good day. We seen the front edge of the whitefront push, as we watched a couple flocks of them pass into and out of our view, 3 to 4 flocks of Loons or Cormorants glide down the river and a few small flocks of small ducks. Also had one little flock of Pintales, pass over, as well. Did have a couple of Gadwals dive into range, downing one and had several hunters claim it. I can not figure why, them other guys were shooting in my shooting lane, and not shooting, the bird that was closer to them, but they claimed my bird. But that is what, waterfowl hunting is all about. See that is what is wrong with fishing, how do you claim a fish when it is on some other persons line. Believe me when I say, that is one reason I don’t do much fishing.
I am going to tell the truth when I say I would not miss tomorrow for nuttin. There is no sport where you can have so much fun, on a bad day and even more on a good powder burning day as well. Here is hoping we have some great powder burning days this season, as well as, some darn good visiting days too.
The boss has the lake looking so good and you just have to be optimistic about this season.
Lets hope this report is a little more fruitful tomorrow, so please check back. Till then, remember all the troops, in your bed time prayers tonight and everynight.
Check back and see ya
Killer Karl

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Another Preseaon Report

Well in a few days we will be settling into the pits for another fall of hunting. All reports are favorable for a good season of hunting. As you can see by the picture the lake is pumped as well as the decoys are set and already move at least one time, hoping to get us the very best shot, possible. Remember last season, the distance from the pits to the shore line was about a shotgun shot, well that has increased. Last year, you may have thought, you could harvest birds flying the shore line. You may have, on the first shot, because it was just over 40 yards. This year that distant has increased to just over a 100 yards. I think the boss said it was now 102 yards. Now I am not predicting, but this may just give the ducks enough room, to roll back off the decoys, for another try, and not fly over any land. So maybe, with water, under them they will stay low, and be in range on the next pass. Lets hope so. Also, lets hope that there is some snow in the north land, by that, I am saying Sioux City and north. If that happens, just maybe there will be some big ol’ Mallards move, into our area and feed in corn fields in Burt County and not corn fields in the Dakota’s. It is our turn to have the birds to feed here again, and we have a great powder burning season, on ducks.

Please, when you get your first good look of the lake, be sure to tell Ralph, your feeling on how it looks, because he has put in endless hours, out there this summer. I was taking to easy and he worked his behind off. The place looks great.

Well here is hoping for a memorable opening day. I will be up dating most days, but if we are having bad days I may not put out a report. It is so hard to write some thing positive when it is actually negative. Again I just have to say, the place looks so good and there is so many good reports on the birds, there should be very few bad days.
As always please say a prayer for the troops that are in harms way, and are protecting our home land.
I guess I should explain a little about the picture. I am standing in the area where we park the white truck and looking up the road to the blinds. We are setting in the middle of a big lake.

See Ya.