• Urban Deer Conservation Urban Deer Conservation January 11, 2016 - “We were treated to the musical stylings of Taylor Swift from a nearby strip mall as we waited for the sun to rise from our blind.” The golden-cheeked warbler is an endangered bird that is found nesting nowhere else in the world except the oak-juniper woodlands of Central Texas. How does that relate to deer hunting? Well, because the bird requires a dense canopy of mature trees, the area’s healthy population of whitetail deer, which browse on the leaves, needs to be managed in order to protect this sensitive habitat. Through a multi-agency partnership, strict conservation efforts are applied to preserve this habitat for not only the golden-cheeked warbler, but also the endangered black-capped vireo in the area as well. As a result, a select number of hunters are allowed access to this restricted land each year only through a public draw held by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. With the unique opportunity to hunt in our hometown, we felt extra fortunate to have been able to draw four doe tags. The hunt was conducted on the private Barton Creek Preserve, which occupies 4,000 acres inside Austin city limits. It’s surreal to hunt deer amidst the street noise created by rush hour commuters on the large thoroughfares just a stone’s throw away. On certain nights, one can even make out the lyrics to songs being performed by major recording artists at Zilker Park, situated in the heart of the city. We were treated to the musical stylings of Taylor Swift from a nearby strip mall as we waited for the sun to rise from our blind. Despite the lack of hunting pressure, the deer population on the preserve was relatively low, in part due to the natural population of coyotes. With the thickest coats I’d ever seen, these were the healthiest song dogs I’ve ever encountered. It was obvious that they, like us, were doing their part to manage the whitetail population and bringing balance to this incredible ecosystem. The action was slow, but we were able to fill one of our four doe tags by the end of our hunt. Desiree became the first woman to have successfully harvested a deer through this hunt. Unfortunately, we were the only hunters that week to have had success. However, as with many of the public drawn hunts in Texas, it’s always a privilege to just be out there on land that you would otherwise never have access to. Deer or no deer, there was no way we would have left the preserve empty-handed. And knowing that we helped play a role in the conservation of another species that calls the area home, made for an even more special experience. Tight Lines and Big Tines! Khoa Le
  • Gifts For The Outdoorsman Gifts For The Outdoorsman November 20, 2015 - Hunting for the perfect gift for the outdoorsman/woman in your life? Here are our top picks from gear we’ve tested in the field. YETI Rambler Lowball $25.99 The 10 oz. double-wall vacuum insulated Lowball keeps hot drinks warmer and cold drinks cooler longer than standard mugs and cocktail glasses. They’ve been perfect for hot coffee in cold duck blinds and night caps around the fire. Shop YETI Rambler Lowball Hunting Children’s Books: Huck’s Ten Point Buck $8.75 The perfect gift for your the littlest hunters on your list this holiday season! Sheila Powell Potts’ children’s story follows Huck and his hound dog, Chuck on a delightful buck hunt. It’s the first in a series of wildly entertaining and beautifully illustrated hunting and fishing tales for children, which include Hungry For Snook and Big Bear Hunt, which follows Huck’s sister Clair. Pick up a copy or Buy all three! Luci Light $14.99 Our adventures will sometimes send us into some pretty remote areas where every ounce counts. Being able to pack bright inflatable lights that fold down to the size of a CD, without the need for batteries, has been remarkable. Every Luci light is solar powered, lightweight, waterproof, super bright and never needs batteries. Purchase a light for yourself, your loved ones or give the gift of light to someone in the world who really needs it at a fraction of the cost. Afflictor Broadheads $36.99 A wonderful gift for the bowhunter in your life. We’ve been enjoying great success with these innovative new hybrid-style broadheads which combine the reliability of a fixed head thanks to a large cutting tip and larger locking blades with the consistent flight of a mechanical. Shop from four models of the new Hybrid heads. Maven Binoculars from $500 Impeccable edge-to-edge clarity and low-light performance thanks to the finest glass packaged in a beautiful design that can be customized in a variety of colorways and camo patterns. It’s no wonder that Maven, a small company in Wyoming that cuts out the middleman to sell directly to you, is racking up gear of the year honors from National Geographic and top awards from Field & Steam. Everything on these binoculars is thought through and designed, even the packaging! Build and design your custom Maven binoculars. Allen Fly Reels from $99 Allen reels represent some of the best value for the money in the industry and come in a number of wildly popular colorways, some of which have born cult-like followings. The reels have been workhorses for us and the customer service behind all of their products from Evan and team has been unrivaled. Like your local fly shop, knowledgable friendly experts are never more than a simple phone call away. Shop Allen fly reels. Havalon Knives x Tight Lines and Big Tines! Piranta Torch $42.99 After selling out in 24 hours the past two shipments, we’re happy to announce that our Tight Lines and Big Tines! Piranta Torch hunting and skinning knife, made exclusively by Havalon Knives is back […]
  • DUCK DECOY RIGGING – TEXAS STYLE July 21, 2015 - By: David Frisbie With shows like Duck Dynasty, interest in waterfowling is at an all-time high. With so many new people in the sport I have been asked many times about decoys and decoy spreads. If you have ever met a Texan you know we are overly proud of our state and heritage. We claim to have everything bigger, the most beautiful women,  invented the Texas-two step, and even named a slice of toast after ourselves. We didn’t stop there… Meet the Lone star way of doing decoys… The “Texas Rig”. I have been in a few debates with my more seasoned hunting buddies on the best way to rig out your decoys. To me there is no better way to rig your dekes (or decoys) for puddle duck hunting than a “Texas rig”. You can fit more than a dozen Texas rigs on a carabiner. I love these rigs for a few reasons:   Ease of setting/picking up spread Tangle free line Easy to mix & match (especially at 3am in the dark) Easily stored away Simple and cheap to rig up The only drawback in my opinion is that it seems to chip off the paint a little quicker than a traditional decoy bag. But the convenience and speed outweighs a little decoy paint when you’re cold, wet, and in the dark. So here’s how to do the Texas Rig for a half dozen dekes. Supplies: • 400# monofilament line (24 feet) • 6- 4oz Mushroom weights (egg weights work too) • 12 Aluminum crimp sleeves • Crimping pliers • Sharp knife 1) First, cut your line into sections. Mine are any where from 32 inches to 48 inches. Most the water I hunt is not more then 2 feet deep if that so I don’t typically need anymore than that. Use your judgement. 2) Second, run the line through the weight, make a loop and with a crimp sleeve. Trim the extra end of the line off COMPLETELY. If you don’t these tags can catch on the other decoy lines and be a pain in the butt. 3) Next on the other end of the line run it through the hole in the keel of your decoy. If there isn’t one use a 1/4 inch drill bit and make one. After the line is run put a crimp sleeve on the end of the line and form an overhand knot making about a 2-3″ wide loop. Then you continue to pass the open end of the line thru the loop 2-3 more times until you make it back around to the crimp sleeve. The open end then goes into the crimp sleeve and is crimped shut. Again, take off any extra line to prevent getting hung up. 4) Then you clip all the loops together, I use carabiners. Usually buy a neon green or blaze orange one so they are easily found if dropped. They also clip on to the D rings on your waders. I typically put 1 dozen decoys per carabiner. […]
  • EVER SEEN A BIGGER AXIS DEER? THE ANSWER IS NO. May 15, 2015 - Pending a 60-day drying period, this non-typical axis buck is potentially the new #1 SCI free-range axis deer. Wade Pinson was fortunate enough to harvest the buck while hunting at Rain Creek Ranch in Menard, Texas on May 8, 2015. Kyle Nunn, who accompanied Mr. Pinson on his hunt, told us, “We had several come in, but we were all in awe over this deer. Once we were able to get a good look at him, we determined that he was tipped out and starting to rub the velvet off. Wade made a great shot and the deer went down quickly.”   It was only after the deer was down that the men were able to breathe a sigh of relief. With a 35″ spread and a double drop, the men knew that this was surely going to be one of the highest rated bucks in the SCI scorebook and contacted the organization for an official measurement. Unofficially it taped out to 174 1/8. Pending the some deductions after the waiting period, because the buck was in velvet, it will most likely be the biggest free-range axis deer on record. Khoa Le Tight Lines and Big Tines! Rain Creek Ranch is a family owned ranch that is around 3500 acres located in the heart of Texas between Brady and Menard, Texas. The ranch has all kinds of exotics and also has whitetail. The ranch is a free range ranch, with only 450 acres of high fence, which they raise and harvest whitetail. The low fence area is not over hunted and this allows the axis deer and other exotics to stay mostly within the low fenced area. Rain Creek Ranch allows hunters to help them harvest animals through out the year. For information on hunts that are available you may contact them. Rain Creek Ranch would like to thank Wade, James, Justin and Tanner for being great guest and allowing this animal to be harvested. Rain Creek Ranch PO Box 116 Menard, Texas 76859
  • Paddlefish CHASING DINOSAURS March 9, 2015 - By: Khoa Le As children, we would have nightmares about monsters. As adults, we dream of catching them. David Frisbie and I recently had the pleasure of catching some monster paddlefish with captain Ray Austin and his son Bobby on Grand Lake in Northeastern Oklahoma. Often referred to as a “primitive fish,” these fascinating animals have evolved with few morphological changes since the earliest fossil records of the Late Cretaceous, nearly 75 million years ago. They swim through the water with their mouths open, scooping up microscopic zooplankton. Specialized cells on their bills sense weak electrical signals generated by the plankton. Because they don’t bite on bait, anglers must participate in snagging. But there’s no need to worry. Paddlefish are hardy and responsible catch-and-release practice does not cause permanent harm. Paddlefish anglers are required to use barbless hooks and are encouraged to return the fish to the water as quickly as possible. Anglers are also permitted to keep only two paddlefish a year and are encouraged to bring them to the Paddlefish Research Center where the fish is weighed, sexed, measured and aged. Paddlefish deposit growth rings in certain bones, like tree rings, and fish have been aged up to 27 years old in Oklahoma. As an added bonus, the Paddlefish Research Center will process and pack the fish for anglers free of charge. They were even kind enough to meet us on the lake and offered to hand deliver our tasty filets that same day. The PRC exists to help biologists manage Oklahoma populations of the species. Paddlefish are a big sensitive game species vulnerable to environmental conditions and over harvest. They also take a long time to mature (up to 10 years). Once mature they may not spawn every year. The OKDWC uses the information reported by anglers to help ensure a healthy population of paddlefish for years to come. Beyond the bonus of free processing and packing of fish for anglers, the PRC also processes the often-discarded eggs and puts the millions they make off of selling Paddlefish caviar right back into Oklahoma fish and wildlife programs. These programs include quail management, hybrid striped bass production and black bear conservation among others. This benefits ALL hunters, anglers and outdoors enthusiasts, not just a few individuals, while ensuring that these magnificent living fossils continue to thrive for generations to come. Tight Lines and Big Tines! Khoa Le Founder, Tight Lines and Big Tines!
  • Tweed Hunting Party TWEED HUNT: DRESSED TO KILL February 22, 2015 - By: Khoa Le Quail hunting is a venerable tradition of yesteryear, especially in parts of Texas where we hang our hats. It was once a sport enjoyed by all, from the everyman to the Southern gentry. But with the opportunities to hunt them declining with each year gone by, we wanted to make the most of our opportunity to harvest these beautiful and delicious birds while we still can. We paid our utmost respect to the animal and the sport by donning our finest hunting tweed. We armed ourselves with vintage shotguns and arms that were handed down to us from previous generations of wing-shooters as we walked through the Texas Hill Country brush behind the most pedigreed pointing dogs. They did the hunting. We did the shooting. And we were dressed to kill on this truly unforgettable day. Tight Lines and Big Tines! Khoa Le Founder, Tight Lines and Big Tines!
  • FATHER AND SON November 29, 2014 - By: Jeremiah Doughty, “From Field To Plate. The Wild Chef.“ “Shhhhh! There they are 600 yards away! I’ll back up the truck. Get out quietly and grab your gun! Here we go, Dad. The hunt is on.” For years my dad had taught me things like how to tie a knot, how to drive a boat and how to speak to a lady. He was there when I took my first shot on my first hunt. He was there to share in the joy of my first kill, and he showed me how to clean and cook the dove that day. My dad has always been there teaching and showing me how to do everything, but today it was my turn to teach and show him. My dad had never hunted any game larger than a turkey and never harvested anything on four legs larger than a rabbit. So when he said he wanted to go on my next antelope hunt, I was excited since he had never been able to accompany me on my hunts over the years for big game. I was thrilled to purchase his tags and sight in his rifle for him. He had received the rifle as a trade for some handyman work and had never shot it before this trip. With the valley grass just low enough in our unit in Wyoming, the rifle rested on our bipod with the scope just barely peeking over. We were peering at a herd 175 yards away after belly crawling up a ridge as the wind swirled around us. Our friend, Wade, and I pick out the largest doe of the group and tell my father to look for “the big one on the right.” “Dad, aim right behind the shoulder, wait for her to turn and show her side. Okay take the shot whenever you want.” I held my breath, looked through my scope and watched with excitement for what would be one of the proudest moments In our father-son hunting adventures. My dad took a deep breath, steadied himself and pulled the trigger. BOOM! The bullet perfectly hit its mark as the pronghorn bucked. Thrilled, I shouted, “Smoked her! Got her! Got her!” I looked over and saw the joy and excitement on my dad’s face. This must have been what he saw on my face the first time i harvested my first dove. Wade shook his hand and I run over and high-five him screaming, “You did it! You did it!” My dad had just shot and harvested his first big game animal. On top of that, it was one of the toughest, fastest animals in the harshest of landscapes. We head over the ridge to where the antelope had fallen and as we approached, we realized that it was a perfectly placed lung shot. I gave my dad a huge hug and started to tear up. Here was a man who had showed me so much and now I, the son, was able to show him […]
  • RECORD 3-ANTLERED DEER HARVESTED IN TEXAS November 16, 2014 - By: Khoa Le, Have you ever seen a buck like this? Brad Langford just harvested not only an all-time top 10 buck for Jackson County, Texas, but one that possesses a unique point in the middle of its head. It’s why this buck was endearingly named “Unicorn.” Brad had seen this buck before on his trail cams and it has always had that extra tine, but he’d never seen it in person. As a patient hunter focused on quality land and deer management, he’s never shot a big buck off of his family property before. Because he’s been watching this deer for years however, he knew when it walked out, that it was a mature buck that was ready to be harvested. Based on the jaw measurements, the buck was aged at around 7 1/2 years. Besides having the unique non-scoring “unicorn point,” the beautiful Texas whitetail scored 154 1/2 which places it among the top 10 bucks to have ever been harvested in Jackson County, Texas. What kind of mount would you have done with a buck like this? Brad is trying to figure that out. Let us know on Facebook! Tight Lines and Big Tines! Khoa Le
  • THE STATE FISH OF TEXAS November 4, 2014 - By: Morgan Banner, @MoBanner/Instagram With the weather still warm in Texas, I set out for another fun adventure to chase after some Guadalupe bass, the state fish of Texas. Unlike largemouth bass, the jaw on a Guadalupe doesn’t extend beyond its eyes and the markings are similar to a spotted bass. Because they are primarily only found in central Texas, my boyfriend Trey and I, along with our friend Mike, decided to wet our lines in Round Rock, just north of Austin. Guadalupe bass do not grow to a large size so they prefer small flowing streams rather than quiet waters that largemouth enjoy. So to find them meant wading through waist-deep waters and climbing boulders to locate the perfect spots. We caught a good number of bass that day, but the highlight of the trip was catching one bass in particular. It had actually taken my bait the first time I presented it, but let it go before I could set the hook. I was discouraged thinking the fish was gone for good, but Trey was right behind me telling me to “wait a second.” Sure enough the fish returned and took my bait again! This time I made sure to set the hook perfectly.  It helps to have such great fishing buddies and landing that Guadalupe in particular was such a rush. When it comes to fishing, it pays to be patient. Don’t get discouraged and never give up! Tight Lines and Big Tines! Morgan Banner @MoBanner/Instagram  
  • FEATHERS, SHOTGUNS AND PINK CAMO! September 28, 2014 - By: Jeremiah Doughty, “From Field To Plate. The Wild Chef.“ When is it too young to take your child on a hunting trip? If this question was posed to a father with sons the answer seems to be along the lines of, “It’s never too early to take them out, show them how to hunt and be a man.” But when the question is asked to a father with daughters it seems to be the complete opposite. The answer seems to go along the lines of “you should wait, she’s too young. Guns will scare her. It’s dirty. It’s gross!” Being a father of two daughters I asked myself this question! And I decided that my four-and-a-half year old daughter was ready to go out in the field for dove season opener! My daughter Emma has grown up around a father who hunts, fishes, cooks and cleans his game! She watches the videos and pictures from my trips. She asked for teriyaki antelope skewers on her fourth birthday. This springs turkey hunt I was loading the car, packing my tags and tuning my calls when a cute little girl approached me with a box call in hand and said “Dadda, can I go?” It broke my heart to tell her no, not yet honey. So when it came time for dove season that same yellow haired, blue eyed girl came up to me and simple said “Dadda, can I go.” To which I replayed “heck yeah.” The joy she had upon her face will be a memory I take with me my whole life. I had more fun picking out pink camo, pink eye and ear protection than I have ever once had finding gear for myself. Leading up to the trip I got a lot of people telling me things like. She’s to young, girls should not see that. It’s dirty and dangerous. You’re not a good father! Yes, people told me these things. I found myself asking them if Emma was a 4.5 year old boy would it be any different. To which every single person responded “YES, boys are supposed to do that stuff, not girls” I was shocked. No wonder our little girls are finding self worth in boys, makeup, fashion and looks. No wonder why our girls are being bullied, pushed around and made to feel like they are less. I will raise my daughters with a joy in being them. Being confident and happy with being a girl. Knowing that they can succeed in anything they want. That when they out shoot the boys don’t rub it in their faces…. Okay, yes rub it in their faces! Know that it’s not what’s under the clothes that makes you who you are, but what you do that defines who you are! Being a spiritual man I always instill that idea of actions speak louder than words! The day has arrived, the hunt is upon us and I tell Emma, let’s go! Her face lights up, […]