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Kentucky Squirrel Hunting IV

I went out for a quick two hours of hunting yesterday evening since the weather was much cooler.

I made my way back to another mountain where beech trees are every where. It’s a little early for beechnuts but the squirrels still hang out on this slope when the wind blows a bit more than they like. It paid off because I was able to get three in one tree.

All three were in one of those center trees chasing each other playing around. With some quick shotgun work I was able to get all three. Unfortunately for me two of them fell and rolled down the mountain into the biggest bunch of thorn bushes and blackberry bushes you will ever see. I spent 40 minutes fighting through it trying to recover the game and had to give it up as it got too dark to see safely. Very frustrating and leaves me with a sick feeling.

This young male was the only one of the three I could find. Sometimes you lose even when you win. Sad Panda face.

One thing to keep an eye our for this time of year is the one thing I hate above all things.

Looking at this, some people will think it’s harmless. Others with more sense will see those spikey hairs and know immediately that is never an indication of something to cuddle with. It is the White Tussock Moth Caterpillar. They love to fall out of trees and onto your head, arms or back of the neck. When they feel threatened, or maybe they just do it to be pricks, they shed all those hundreds of tiny white hairs. And where those hairs touch the skin… Pain. Pain, stinging and burning. A rash that itches and stings for what seems like a week. Imagine bees stings that itch intensely. When I was in high school one fell on my left upper arm. The hairs are so fine they even stung me through the long sleeve shirt fabric. I couldn’t take off the shirt without making it worse so I had to take out my knife and cut the sleeve off. One about 10 years later fell on back of my brother’s neck. I can’t imagine that hell. This is why it pays to wear a hat like a boonie hat int he woods. Other than the protection from sun and rain, it does well in keeping stinging insects off the neck when they fall from a tree or are knocked from leaves if you shake a tree passing by.

One of the major problems in the south is the asian Kudzu vine. Another import that turned out to not be such a great idea. It’s nearly unstoppable without a major amount of work, fire ,chemicals and digging. IT will cover a multiple story house if not stopped. It will go up power lines, road signs and trees. Once over trees it kills them eventually. No sun can get through.

It doesn’t do well in shade thankfully. So it doesn’t grow under the treeline. So what it does is climb up the trees on the edge of a open area. It will eventually kill them all and as they fall, it will move and cover the area no exposed to more sun. That mass on the far left used to be one of the biggest pine trees I ever saw. It was beautiful and when I was a kid I would often play under it. None of that vine was there even 20 years ago. The vine grows what seems like 6 inches a night once summer hits.

It does have one tiny use. This time of year it blooms a purple flower that smells exactly like grape Koolaide or grape jelly. It is edible and you can make a jam out of it. You can even eat it raw and it tastes a bit like grape Not as much as it smells like grape though. Weird.

The vine can be made into a type of bread if you are dedicated enough or starving. I haven’t tried that though. Whitetail deer love to eat the leaves from the vine and all summer and late fall you can see them every where grazing on it. Once it frosts though, the deer won’t touch it. Even if it is only slightly wilted.

Walking through it is not fun but it is doable, I have learned to love with it after all these years. What other choice do you really have?

Night Vision PVS-14 Bridge Mounts

Night vision is expensive. Then, there are all sorts of options, but they are sold by competing dealers so it is hard to find fair comparisons about them. It is true force multiplier as every day we experience darkness and the vast majority would not have something like night vision. It is also something that people won’t be throwing together in their garage after a SHTF event. You either have it or you don’t.

Not that long ago a night vision salesman was pushing a product I was really interested in. Then he started making all sorts of impossible claims. Made me decide not to buy from him. It can be hard to sort through the marketing bullshit, especially if you have limited knowledge or experience with night vision.

NITEWALKER posted an excellent comparison video of various Dual PVS-14 bridge mounts. Not a whole lot of people would get the chance to have their variety of sub $1000 bridge mounts on hand. That why I am so grateful to see this sort of information shared. No way would I be buying all that stuff.

Just a reminder

I’d been meaning to bring this up again for a while. I was reminded again when I was on a gun forum where people were posting their “bragging” pictures to show off how many guns they own.

Firearms mean different things to different people. For some it is a weapon, others a tool for hunting. Some buy them because they are collectible, or cool. For what ever reason, gun are a whole lot of fun.

But if we are concerned about serious usage, fighting, or survival, lets not forget the big picture.

If you are a pepper, don’t forgo food, money on hand, supplies, etc over an additional extra gun. There are a great deal of more plausible shit hits the fan (SHTF) scenarios then a prolonged gun fight.

Before you buy that 40th gun to add to the collection. Consider if you are lacking in other equipment like body armor, night vision, or silencers.

Some years back I had a friend tell me he had a gun to protect him self and his family from zombies. I asked him how much ammo he had and he replied 20 rounds. I commented how the 21st zombie would get him. I’ve had machinists tell me that if the SHTF they are going to turn their own silencer on a lathe. I challenge them if they know how to make their own night vision or lightweight body armor.

I love guns.
I love having a lot of guns.
But sometimes we might want to consider if there is something else we need before we add another gun to the stable.
Especially consider special equipment. For example, night vision. That would be much harder to obtain in the middle of a bad situation.
And, of course, don’t put your self in debt buying this stuff.

Just got back home after Irma.

The acronym SHTF has gotten quite popular in the past few years.

I remember that it used to be popular to say that your preparations were for fighting off the inevitable Russian or Chinese invasion, sometimes instead the Blue Helmets were mentioned.  I’d tend to think Blue Helmets would be a Turkey Shoot, but lets hope it never comes to that.

Now days the common excuse is zombies, that one is prepping for zombies.

I just got back to my home after hurricane Irma.  Fortunately my home weathered the storm well, but some of my neighbors have extensive damage to their roofs.

Don’t fall too far into fantasy when you are prepping, there are all manner of real world problems that can cause the proverbial shit to hit the fan.

101 Uses For Ammocan

The online surplus website Old Grouch’s Surplus  sent out an email with a neat list of ideas if you are like me and have more of these than you know what to currently do with.

1- Make a portable wood stove
2- Lockable center console for your Jeep or UTV
3- Tool Box
4- Waterproof storage in your boat
5-Computer case
6- Pistol Storage
7- Field Toilet (line with a plastic bag to dispose of, don’t ruin your can!)
8- Waterproof and airtight seed storage
9- Flammable storage (paint cans, sprays)
10- Cache
11- Waterproof document storage
12- Seat around the campsite
13- Nut and bolt storage in the garage
14- Waterproof first aid kit
15- Ham Radio go-box
16- Foot Stool
17- Live trap, rigging the lid like a deadfall
18- Spare gun parts storage
19- Parts washer you can shut and store the fluid in
20- Store pistols
21- Store spare parts for guns, machines etc
22- Store fire starting equipment dry and safe
23- Planter
24- Faraday cage
25- Store and sort fired brass
26- Store gunpowder
27- Store magazines
28- Make a lockbox for your game cameras to keep the them secure
29- Store tire chains
30- Store emergency supplies in your car
31- Make custom motorcycle saddlebags
32- Oil drop pan
33- Store oils and grease in the car or truck to avoid leaks
34- Mount speakers inside in your Jeep
35- Make a Geocache
36- Store chain to keep it from getting everything dirty
37- Store receipts in your car until you can file them
38- Fill with chain or concrete to make weights for tractor or mower
39- Cigar humidor
40- Solar power system with battery inside and panel on top
41- Urn for a veterans ashes
42- Storage for kids toys
43- Storage for paint, markers and art supplies
44- Hide the stuff you don’t want your wife to find in an ammo box mixed with all the boxes of ammo
45- Store family pictures
46- Make a radio with speakers mounted in it
47- Transport power tools and batteries to jobsites dry and secure
48- Lunch box
49- Waterproof case for electronic game calls
50- Mailbox
51- Mount on trailer to hold straps, tarps & chains when not in use
52- Dog bowl when camping- store food in the can and open to serve
53- Mount to spare tire rack on a Jeep or SUV for extra storage space
54- Nesting box for chickens
55- Gun cleaning supply storage
56- Full with sand to use as exercise weights
57- Add foam padding for transporting sensitive electronics
58- ATV gear storage- mount to the racks for Waterproof storage for straps, emergency supplies, etc
59- Quench tank for blacksmiths
60- Battery box for deep cycle batteries
61- Camp food storage to keep critters big and small out
62- Ice chest, line the sides with Styrofoam for insulation
63- Soak your feet after a long day on the trail
64- Pack grab and go survival kits in them and give them as gifts
65- Bolt under the hood of a Jeep to store tools that won’t get stolen when you run topless
66- Store plumbing and electrical fittings at home or in a service truck
67- Store loose change
68- Mount one on your tractor to hold tools and one to hold chains and pins
69- Mount electric fence charger inside to protect from weather and damage
70- Boot scraper
71- Keep shoe polish and gear stored airtight
72- Stack like Legos to make furniture like chairs and benches
73- Ballot box
74- Essential oil storage
75- Shadow box with one side replaced with glass
76- Store poker chips & cards
77- Herb garden mounted on the wall
78- Store coffee and supplies on camping trips
79- Birdhouse
80- Giant emergency candle case that shuts for storage
81- Gift box for groomsmen
82- Store liquor bottles camping
83- Ash can for fireplace or wood stove
84- Knife storage
85- Keep spare computer cables, phone chargers stored neatly.
86- Mount as toolbox under truck flat bed or utility bed
87- Store pet grooming supplies
88- Keep pesticides and weed killers locked where kids and pets can’t get them
89- Keep weed trimmer string organized instead of all over the place
90- Wheel chock
91- Hunting Scent Storage
92- Cash box
93- After hours drop box for keys, money etc
94- Rocket stove
95- Case for Rasberry Pi projects
96- Hidden storage up under desk
97- Flotation device (when empty, don’t try this full of ammo!)
98- Keep your welding rods dry
99- Wash basin
100- Burn Box for documents
101- Keep your ammo in, of course!