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norcalhunter
12-13-2005, 5:17 PM
Any of you guys duck hunters here?

I hunt in the Sacramento Valley near Willows.

sargenv
12-13-2005, 8:29 PM
Funny, so do I. Dad has a club on the NE corner of the Sacramento NWR closed zone. Him and um, 15 or 16 other guys share it.

I haven't made it out yet, but intend to the last 3 weekends of the season.

Vince

norcalhunter
12-14-2005, 3:25 PM
Nice Spot!

I haven't been out in a couple of weeks. Without weather my spot really doesn't get much action.

Corner of the SWR though :eek: I'm jealous...

Roboshred
12-14-2005, 8:37 PM
Love to shoot the quackers. I hunt greylodge, Colusa and a friends
farm in Richvale. The last 30 days always seem to be the best so that's
when I target my hunt dates. I like to use my Benelli M1 with 3" steel #2's.
I call with JJ lares calls that I use with my own reeds. The Lares calls
call no matter what you put in them. I prefer the sound of my RNT's
(which were hand made by Butch a while back) but the darn things
lock up when they get wet. RB

norcalhunter
12-16-2005, 8:48 AM
Can't beat the 3" 2's as far as I'm concerned.

Really not much of a caller. Been hunting for years but never broke down and bought a nice call to work with.

Mostly I use a 7 in 1, Police Whistle, and some generic WalMart quacker that I do a couple basic calls on.

Roboshred
12-16-2005, 1:25 PM
Mostly I use a 7 in 1, Police Whistle, and some generic WalMart quacker that I do a couple basic calls on.

I agree with you on the whistle. Late season hunts are about whistles. I use
a duck commander multi-whistle. On fogged out mornings, the ducks respond
to the whistles alot better. RB

norcalhunter
12-24-2005, 9:04 AM
I like how with the police whistle I can use it hands free while I get my gun up and ready.

That being said I hunted with a good mallard caller and it was working much better than my whistle. Like you said though it depends on the time of year and conditions.

sargenv
12-26-2005, 3:19 PM
We hunted a LOT of years at Gray Lodge. I started hunting there before dad got into his current club. Dad started hunting there in about 1960 and hunted there every year till about 1987. After that he got into that club he is in now. He also hunted Delevan, Sutter, and Colusa and never really hunted Sacramento due to the amount of deep water there. Generally he hunted Gray Lodge for ducks at the opener and usually finished there. He hunted Delevan in the fog for geese. I only ever went to GL or Delevan.

We used to do the big opening day thing at Gray Lodge, we knew this guy that would have a party over in the trailer section, usually roasting a pig on a spit or something big. Those were the days. Watching the world series, and waiting for the opener to start.. Lots of good memories there.

I have yet to go out and will likely go for the last three weekends of the season. November was too warm, December was too busy, and now after I get back from vacation, I'll have a few weekends to get to go. I'll be using my Browning Gold hunter and likely will bring 3" - 2's and 3's with a few BB's for when the geese get up and move around. I bought some of that Kent fast steel and am eager to try it out. Previous to this year I'd loaded my own and used that, but the Kent stuff can best me by about 100 fps. We'll see how that goes.

Vince

norcalhunter
01-02-2006, 10:15 PM
look forward to hearing the report on your trip, sargenv :)

sargenv
01-08-2006, 2:59 PM
The day started out quite early as I opted to not stay the night up in the trailer.. so I was up at about 3:30, showered and was out the door about 4:15a. I arrived at the club about 6:20 or so and we had a blind that has produced good results before. The weather was pretty much a blue bird day with a slight breeze from the NW. Hardly a cloud in the sky and hazy.

Our first birds into the decoys were Spoonbills and we let those go, we try to get bigger birds than those. Soon after, we spotted a flock of something and dad started calling. We figured out that they were Widgeon and managed to get 1 of them. The next thing into the decoys was a Gadwall and he too was bagged. It got real quiet after shooting time started, lol. Another flock came in at about 6:30 ish.. We managed to score two Mallards, I fired two shots and got the Hen, watched dad empty his gun on the drake, and I put a shot into the air emptying my gun and the drake looked like he was either going to get away or sail, I pulled a round off my side saddle and managed to fold him too. Dad was only watching the drake and sent the dog after it and didn't realize I'd folded the hen. The dog went back out after retrieving the drake, over to where I thought the hen had landed and he retreived that one as well.

That was all pretty much it for a few hours. We had some opportunities to get one or two but we shot at nothing but the sky, lol. At one point dad was putting the call on 3 or 4 pintails and all of a sudden he looked up in a different direction and goes, "Damnit, Mallards!" to which I grabbed my gun and made a good effort at shooting the sky. I thought I managed to hit one of the mallards on my last shot, but it was kind of a longer shot and he appeared to shake it off. The whole time dad was complaining that he couldn't get the safety off on his gun (he'd been shooting a Beretta 391 and had swapped back to his Gold, they have different locations for their safeties). I complained that had he backed me up, we would have gotten that one.. lol.

Then it got really slow. There were a few Jacksnipe flitting by now and then, we were stuck with 4 ducks for quite some time. If it didn't get better soon I was contemplating bagging a few coots. I'm happy we didn't need to resort to that. We'd take shots of Geese that were on the outer edges of "in range" but didn't manage to get any of them. The Jacksnipe managed to find all of the holes in our patterns of 3's. We really needed some #6's for them.

Dad mentioned that we should maybe leave by 9:30.. I asked, where do you need to be? He replied nowhere, stay as long as you want. But it was hard to just stand there waiting for birds.. For a while there seemed to be nothing flying except coots, blackbirds, and the geese getting up and landing inside the refuge to our west. That was fun to watch, but we kept saying, "come on, get out of the refuge and come over here". Yeah, right lol.

About 10 we finally spotted a flock of what looked to be mallards. We managed to each get one drake apiece from that flock.. Well, 6, not too bad. We waited a bit longer, and by about 10:30 there was the final flock of the day.. 4 widgeon.. dad switched calls from the mallard call to the whistle and they worked around us for a few passes, they were decoying well and I heard them replying to the whistle. Initially I couldn't determine if they were Pintails or widgeon and they turned out to be the latter. Out of 4, we managed to get two of them. at 10:55 we wrapped it up and went in.

For what seemed to be a crummy day (weather was too nice) we seemed to do ok. Another club member left about 9 without firing a shot. We always seem to get birds even when it's not too good. I'll be heading back to the club next Sat and the following Sat to close the season. I wish I could have gotten out sooner, even last week when the weather was lousy and dad got his limit between 8 and 11 am. All I can do is hope for some bad weather for next week.

Vince