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  1. Default Average Joe Hunting Adventures with Dan and CJ

    I want to tell you about who we are and what we’re about, but I’d rather you meet us through this adventure. I want to tell you about the crazy year we have ahead, but I’d rather show you. I want to tell you to follow along on are adventure, but that’s your choice.

    Lets get to the point…..

    We hunt hard, we hunt smart, and we hunt everywhere. We don’t give up, and we don’t make excuses. We balance family, our careers, and our passion for hunting. We fear god. We have fun, we love what we do, and we help people do the same.
    We want to share our 2017 experiences with all of you.

    We dubbed this the Average Joe Hunting Adventure because it couldn’t be anymore true. We aren’t special, we aren’t sponsored, we didn’t win the lotto or have a lot of money. As enlisted members in the military we work within our set incomes, budget for everything, save our leave, and tie hunts into weekends and holidays. At the end of the year we come out with hunting seasons most think are not even possible.

    The purpose of this thread isn’t to say “look at me,” but to say “look what you can do.” We regularly talk with people who seem to restrict themselves and convince themselves they can’t find the time, money, or places to hunt. If we can successfully turn their minds around and show them how they can, this thread will be a success.

    As we go forward with this new thing for us, we reflect on two of our favorite quotes;

    "Enthusiasm is one of the most powerful engines of success. When you do a thing, do it with all your might. Put your whole soul into it. Stamp it with your own personality. Be active, be energetic and faithful, and you will accomplish your object. Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”
    — Ralph Waldo Emerson

    "Never follow your passion, but always bring it with you."
    — Mike Rowe

    That being said… give us crap 😉 , share encouragement and tips, and follow along. We hope you enjoy.

  2. #2

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    First off, I'm CJ, the other half of the Dan and CJ duo.

    We've got some big plans for 2017, and hope to hunt and fish in 7-10 states. A lot depends on the draws of course, and you never know what kind of wrenches the military will hit us in the face with. Regardless, we'll get after it hard this season, and hope we can continue the type of seasons we've had in the past. [EDITED BY BIG FIN.]

    Right now, Dan's chasing turkeys in the swamps of Florida, and I'm patiently waiting for the elk to drop their sheds up here in ID. I'm also holding out some hope, much like many of you, that my card will get hit Monday for an AZ elk tag. One of my buddy's cards got hit so I'm hoping to get down there to help out on his hunt.

    We'll do our best to keep you all updated on how our plans develop.
    Last edited by sn.outdoors; 03-19-2017 at 01:04 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Bozeman, MT
    Posts
    12,560

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    Guys, I sent you both a PM.
    My name is Randy Newberg and I approved this post. What is written is my opinion, and my opinion only.

    "Hunt when you can. You're gonna run outta health before you run outta money."

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    CJ is right. We have a long, fun and exciting, unique year ahead of us.
    I call it unique because we have no idea where we may be next week, next month, next hunting season, etc
    Having been in the military for 11 years now I've had such an amazing and wild ride.
    Deployments, no notice deployments, working through the holidays, working all day and night, etc.
    I hope that doesn't come off like me complaining because I absolutely LOVE what I do.

    The reason I bring this all up is because it will better help you understand why I may sound crazy at times.
    For example when I tell you all the possible states I may hunt this year, it's not to make you think "this guy lost his marbles".
    It's more to show you how much planning we put into our year. We have backups for the backups for the back ups.

    Having this plan in place helps us be extremely flexible and also gives us "possible options" that we can pass on to our spouses.
    That way when it's 1700 on a Friday night and I tell my wife I'm driving to Idaho tomorrow to hunt because I have to deploy when I was suppose to hunt New Mexico, she won't even question it. I get the big kiss and a "have fun".

    So before I get deeper into what I'll be doing this year I want to touch more on why we are doing this.
    Both CJ and I love sharing our experience with others. We love what we do and if you share our passion then we want to help you succeed with it even more.

    Our goal is to post as much information as we can to better show that you can do certain things if you put your mind to it.
    If you break out of that mold, you can do anything.

    Whether you live on a fixed income, whether you have limited time off, whether you're a new hunter or an experienced hunter, we just hope we can help teach you something new to make your life easier.
    Another group we really want to target is the military. Both current and future potentials. I can't tell you how many threads I've seen where people are asking if they can hunt if they join the military. Or how many people complain because they think it's too hard to hunt while in.
    We hope this will show them that with a well established plan, many back up courses of action, and a will, then you CAN make it happen.


    So what's in store this year?

    Personally I have one of the biggest years yet set up in front of me!

    This is broken down into a few categories, so let's go. Again I want you to realize this list will seem rediculous, but it's all part of the big plan.
    I'll start with whitetail.
    This year I'll be hunting Florida, Kentucky, Alabama, Oklahoma and possible Iowa.
    Turkey: Florida, Kentucky, Kansas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico.

    Now for some western stuff:
    I applied for New Mexico: elk, deer; oryx, ibex, antelope, and bighorn. I also plan to chase OTC Barbary sheep.
    This year in Idaho I'll be applying for either a moose controlled hunt or a deer controlled hunt. That choice will be based off of how sting my New Mexico draw is. If it's minimal I'll apply for Moose and if it's a good draw I'll apply for deer.
    I've also got applications in for or will apply for: Maine Moose, Kentucky elk, Oklahoma controlled hunts, Tennessee controlled hunts, Texas controlled hunts, Wyoming antelope, a few super tags and more. I honestly can't remember them all.

    Some of the backups to the back ups include: Idahoa OTC elk, Montana OTC elk, Wyoming deer, and Arizona OTC Coues.

    There are a lot more details I can get into, but I don't want to put it all upfront right now.
    Ive been so excited to start this thread for a while now, but I need to control myself and post all in a proper manner.
    Plus I'm currently sitting in a blind in Florida waiting for turkeys to leave their roost. So I should probably go focus on that instead

    Anyways, thank you everyone who has already posted and welcome to the thread. It's going to be a lot of fun and I honestly look forward to sharing it with you all.


    It's turkey time... take care.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    1,334

    Default

    I hope you hit all those draws. I will follow along.

    With all the draws in New Mexico, you are looking at big bucks. Hope you can apply as a resident.

    Looking forward to this one!

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobbydean View Post
    I hope you hit all those draws. I will follow along.

    With all the draws in New Mexico, you are looking at big bucks. Hope you can apply as a resident.

    Looking forward to this one!
    Bobbydean,

    I was stationed in Clovis for the last 4 years.
    When I moved there and bought my house I changed my residency to New Mexico.
    Now that I'm stationed in Florida I am still a NM resident and a domicile resident of Florida.

    It was kind of funny when I moved here. Everyone told me to change my residency to Florida because we get some sort of tax break on your house or something like that.

    They all were completely lost when I explained that I wasn't going to change it because I didn't want to miss out on drawing New Mexico tags.

    New Mexico stole my heart when I moved there and I am trying to get stationed back there when my time here is done.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    1,334

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    I honestly believe that all Military should be given resident in any state they served forever. Lot of military in my family, and I am not.

    Thanks for your service and glad your are taking advantage of your residency. Ibex and Oryx would be my favorite. Would not sneeze at a bighorn tag.

    Thank you again and you must draw to make this fun!

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobbydean View Post
    I honestly believe that all Military should be given resident in any state they served forever. Lot of military in my family, and I am not.

    Thanks for your service and glad your are taking advantage of your residency. Ibex and Oryx would be my favorite. Would not sneeze at a bighorn tag.

    Thank you again and you must draw to make this fun!
    Thank you for your support!

    Drawing great tags will be awesome, but there is still no shortage of opportunity for us if we're unsuccessful. We'll keep our fingers crossed and our lucky socks on until the draw results come out though... you can never be too superstitious.

    Good luck on your draws as well. NM is truly an amazing state with incredible hunting opportunities if you're lucky enough to draw a tag.
    "Never follow your passion, but always bring it with you." ~ Mike Rowe

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobbydean View Post
    I honestly believe that all Military should be given resident in any state they served forever. Lot of military in my family, and I am not.

    Thanks for your service and glad your are taking advantage of your residency. Ibex and Oryx would be my favorite. Would not sneeze at a bighorn tag.

    Thank you again and you must draw to make this fun!
    As CJ mentioned, thank you for your support!
    I really like the direction NM has taken the last few years. They seem to be pushing bills and acts to support NM veterans.
    I've seen both tax offers and now this 50% tag price for hunting. I think they are creating some great incentives for staying in NM.

    I would honestly faint if I ever drew the OIL Ibex tag. They are such a beautiful animals and hunting them in their home is no easy task!
    One of these days I will be lucky enough to draw it.

    I'd be happy with any tag this year. I love hunting there and I cannot wait to come back!

    Speaking of Oryx.... look what I'm about to go prep and play with!



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Newhartford Iowa
    Posts
    2,298

    Default

    Thank you for your service. This looks like a very interesting thread. I will be following along closely.

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    Quote Originally Posted by duckhunt View Post
    Thank you for your service. This looks like a very interesting thread. I will be following along closely.
    Thank you for your support, duckhunt!









    I just threw this on the smoker, so I think it's probably a good time to post a couple catch up stories of stuff that's already happened this year.
    That way I can just update as we go!

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    So some of you may have seen my thread, but recently I was relocated to NW Florida.
    https://onyourownadventures.com/hunt...y-Florida-Saga


    With this new move came a whole new type of hunting that I was not used to.
    New terrain, new challenges, but LOTS of animals to shoot!

    Before I moved here I was told many stereotypes about the area: No big deer, way too pressured, no turkeys, don't hunt public.
    Well let me tell you that it's all crap.

    Since moving here in October I've had such a ball exploring new areas, finding great spots, finding mature deer, finding birds, and hogs.
    I won't go too deep into what's already posted in the other thread because it's already posted so I want to show you some new material.

    A lot of my off time is spent just walking around public areas learning the layout of the land, finding old sign, new sign, sheds, or actual game.





    I found this spot deep out in a local unit. I saw it and instantly thought "ELK WALLOW".... it even reeked like something fowl.
    After coming back to reality from my elk happy thoughts, I realized that I think I found an area where hogs may be wallowing around.
    I've never hunted them before, but if I were a pig in the hot Florida sun, I'd wanna roll in this.
    The area dipped down into a swampy bowl so I dropped down and found some other great trails leading to some cool spots.








    After I got myself in there good and deep I found an opening and what looked to be a small pond.
    I started walking the banks and found deer tracks, turkey tracks, and what looked like bear scat.

    So I deployed a camera and keep exploring.

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    After letting it soak for a few weeks I went back out and to surprise.... it was an active little spot










    I pulled out my notepad and added that area to future potential areas. I REALLY look forward to getting out there early season archery.
    They open October 23 out here. It'll be very warm and I have a feeling I might be able to arrow a hog and some deer!

    I have found lots of other areas equally neat and I have also found some little gems while doing it.
    I'm a spaz and get SO excited when I find sheds. I've already posted some big ones that I found down here in that other thread, but I figured I would post the recent two I found. One is REALLY..... HUGE!






    I love this little guy. It now sits on a mantel in my daughters room. It's tiny just like her!


    Spring Turkey opens yesterday and will be running until April 22.
    I've gotten into birds both days, but no shots. I will be honest, I am a green horn when it comes to turkey hunting....
    Last year was the first year I've ever hunted them and I went Jake crazy. (4 Jakes in 3 states lol )

    Yesterday I glassed 6 gobblers out strutting around on a power line.
    I snuck into the timberline and sprinted down their way to close the distance.
    I got within about 200 yards and snuck out to the powerline edge again.
    "SWEET! They are in a little bowl and can't see me..."
    I could just barely see their fan tips so what does any normal person do? Crawl time!!!
    I closed the distance to about 80 yards and this is where things got hairy. I could see a little red head coming my way, so I laid prone and waited.
    Safety came off, the bird hit 50 yards, but I couldn't shoot.... he was down too deep and all I could see was its head.
    I had no idea whether it was a year old bird or an old gobbler. It just didn't feel right so he got the pass.
    After he cleared into the timber I started crawling up again. At about 70 yards I heard the dreaded alert call.....
    I looked up and all of these heads had popped up and then they bolted!

    DOH!!!
    No worries though, this was an area I thought had birds in it, so I went back out this morning.


    This morning I went out and set up in the same area.
    Once enough light was out I hit my call with a few small clucks and a hen swooped down within 80 yards of me.
    As a noob I got really excited about that because "hey, close enough!" I was just happy birds were in there.
    She went into the timber and then started calling like CRAZY. I honestly though someone was just hammering a box call, but after about 10 minutes of her whining a giant gobble let out about 100 yards behind me and she shut up.
    At that same time I looked with my bios over to my other spots that I plan to set up on in the mornings.
    There were 5 gobblers strutting about 30 yards from where I would have been set up

    So now I had turkeys behind me and turkeys 300 yards down the powerlines.
    I tried calling my heart out, but I did not sound pretty enough.
    They all went their own ways and soon enough 1300 came and we had to leave the range.


    It was a great two days and got me so amped up to work harder at this. When I say I am green I mean I am GREEN at turkey hunting.
    No worries though, I'm going to keep working these bad boys hard and fill my two tags. I think this will be good practice before my other turkeys seasons open in Kentucky and New Mexico!

  14. Default

    Another quick thing before I go check on the Oryx roast.... the other hobby I have picked up down here....
    FISHING!

    I'm surrounded by some of the best fresh water and salt water fishing around, so I may as well take advantage of it!
    My coworker was nice enough to invite me out to his honey hole bass spot so I decided to show him my appreciation.
    I packed up my grill, some spices, buns, cooking utensils, ORYX BURGER, and off we went!

    I caught this little guy while we were out there.





    My buddy landed this nice 4lb bass.



    We had a great time fishing and I cannot wait to go more. I have a feeling that I'll be invited back again because....





    I didn't get a fully finished picture because it was just too dang good!
    It was such a nice time to get out and relax in another way, but I think I ruined myself... now I need oryx burgers everytime I fish
    Last edited by Lostinthewoods; 03-19-2017 at 09:12 PM.

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    I can't post prepped meat and not show the final product....
    Attached Images Attached Images    

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lostinthewoods View Post
    I can't post prepped meat and not show the final product....
    im gonna swing by for dinner
    Soli Deo Gloria - To GOD alone the GLORY

  17. #17

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    While Dan's been enjoying the nice weather in FL and hanging out at the beach, I've been wandering around all over SW Idaho, a little bit of Oregon and Northern Nevada, and suffering through this winter with everyone else. It didn't take me long to realize I really need to leash my ambitions for out here. Its a blessing to live in an area where I can hunt 2 states as a resident that both have a wide variety of hunting options. Just about everyone knows ID is a great OTC hunting state, but OR has its advantages too. Thank you to Oregon's State Legislature for passing a bill which allows all active duty service members to pay resident fees for hunting and fishing. Since its so close and because they're mil friendly, I almost feel obligated to go check it out. I wish WA was on board too, but even as a legal resident (prior to switching to NM) I had to pay non-res fees. Although, my wife isn't complaining. The last thing I need is yet another state to go hunting in this year.

    The following are the options on the table for 2017/2018 and they'll be narrowed down as results come out and my work schedule fleshes out;
    NM: elk, pronghorn, and ibex(a man can dream right?)
    OR: elk and bear, maybe turkey (I'll apply for elk and deer tags)
    ID: everything (Turkey, deer, elk, bear, mountain lion, wolf, moose application, and fishing) My wife is applying for deer and elk tags, and hunt OTC units if unsuccessful.
    WA: spring turkey and some fishing
    WI: I'm going home in July for a few family events and will get some walleye fishing in while I'm there. It'll be the first time I've been home in summer months since before I joined, so it'll be a really fun trip.

    With all of the options available, I will have to cut some out, and likely will have some conflicts with work, but I'll make the most of it. My only real goals for the year are to take the wife and kids out camping this summer, do a few father daughter camping trips with my 3yr old, find some sheds, get better at photography, catch some delicious mountain trout, and harvest enough animals to fill the freezer.

    Here are a few pics from some of the adventures I've done since January.

    I've been trying to kill some coyotes, but they've been eluding me. I've been able to find just about everything other than coyotes though.
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    My plan is to get out and explore every weekend. I'm glad there's so much to explore close by.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    "Never follow your passion, but always bring it with you." ~ Mike Rowe

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    Quote Originally Posted by OregonChris View Post
    im gonna swing by for dinner
    Come on over! It's going fast.
    That was honestly the best thing I've ever eaten.
    I was secretly hoping my wife wasn't going to want any, but when she tried a bite and said "this is better than any prime rib I've had", I knew I was in trouble.

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    Something I am really looking forward to doing this year is hunting Kentucky.
    I'll be hunting about 11 hours away from here in NNE Kentucky.
    I found two different pieces of public land to hunt and through a good friend, I asked a guy permission to hunt his 600 acre farm.
    Needless to say this is going to be a VERY exciting experience.
    The county that this is all located in is fairly small and it seems most people have their own private land to hunt.
    With that being said the public land doesn't really get hit too hard.
    Another perk is one of the pieces of public is around a giant lake.
    There are areas out there that I think if I can canoe into them, there will be no one around me for miles. I've always dreamed about boating into a spot to hunt or boating out to an area and camping for a while. I need to research if I can even camp out there, regardless this is going to be AMAZING. The zone Ill be hunting is a zone where I can only shoot four deer. 3 does and a buck or 4 does.
    So with that being said I'm going to tell you one thing and end up doing the other
    My GOAL is to shoot a couple does and hold out for a mature buck....
    BUT I get so dang excited when I see things I can shoot so I can't make any promises

    I wanted to hit the ground running with KY so I planned a little trip to get out and scout.
    Something I ALWAYS work on is a proper balance with family time and hunting time.
    So I made sure to make this both a fun family time and scouting trip.
    My wife FULLY supports my hunting addiction and loves to scout with me, shed hunt, and she loves game meat!
    So I be sure to include her on as much of that as I can.

    I found a little cabin I could rent out near the public land and that was that!












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    I don't know if I mentioned it in an earlier post, but earlier this year my wife and I had our first baby.
    Remi Mae Porter, our beautiful little girl!

    So my hiking and scouting trips now are weighted a little more


















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    The scouting was good so far.
    I found some nice core areas that I'll focus more on later though this spring and fall.
    I only walked the smaller piece of public land, but found some great sign.














    It was still a little early for sheds, but I did pick up some other stuff while out there....








    I'll be honest with you guys.
    I'm probably the worst hunter in the entire world!
    The only reason I probably get any kills is because I pick up so much trash.
    It's just a way of karma coming back around.

  22. #22

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Newhartford Iowa
    Posts
    2,298

    Default

    Good for you on picking up the trash. I do some of that myself when im out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by duckhunt View Post
    Good for you on picking up the trash. I do some of that myself when im out.
    It drives me nuts that people just throw stuff out their windows while driving, throw stuff in the woods, or walk by it and don't pick it up.
    If I see something when I'm hunting, scouting, or hiking then I pick it up.
    I'm actually trying to organize a clean up out here of some public land.
    You would figure people would be all over making this easy, but to do it right it's an absolute pain in the behind.

    Quote Originally Posted by vanish View Post
    Off to a strong start!
    Thanks Ryan!
    It's going to be such a big year! Especially with those two tags already in my pocket that I told you about.
    I cant wait to see you and your wife crush it this year.

  25. #25

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    Love seeing all the pictures. Good luck on all of the hunts this year and look forward to hearing all the stories.

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