Serving Waitsburg, Dayton and the Touchet Valley

Specials / Palouse Outdoors


Sorted by date  Results 1 - 25 of 35

  • Palouse Outdoors:Pheasants Forever Continues Youth Shooting Sports Tradition

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Jun 6, 2024

    A beautiful early summer morning greeted nearly a dozen youth interested in the outdoors and shooting sports as they arrived at the Walla Walla Gun Club. The day's event, sponsored by Blue Mountain Pheasants Forever in partnership with the gun club, was the opening act for a summer's worth of shotgun skills events for youth aged 18 and under. The BMPF youth "summer series" celebrates the challenge and excitement of target shooting and builds the muscle memory necessary to connect with flying...

  • Palouse Outdoors:A Spring Celebration in the Channeled Scablands

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|May 2, 2024

    Spring in the scablands is purely magical, and that's no exaggeration. I can testify because the striking landscape, the rich cultural and natural history of the area, the diversity of wildlife, basalt bluffs, and grasslands coax me into photography when I should be fishing the many lakes that support healthy rainbow trout populations. This year, I ventured further north to Swanson Lakes, eager to experience early wildflowers. One golden April afternoon, I searched for anything colorful,...

  • Palouse Outdoors:Stay Safe with a Satellite Communication System

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Apr 4, 2024

    Hunting, fishing, and hiking always seemed vanilla to me when it comes to the potential for injury and death. That could be one reason that a passion for the outdoors hit me when I was a child. My brothers chided me for being a "sissy," and the best escape from the ridicule was avoidance somewhere beneath the trees on the neighboring woodlots. I began tree-stand hunting for white-tailed deer in my late teens and quickly realized the dangers of the activity. I took the proper precautions with...

  • Palouse Outdoors:Steelhead, The (other) Fish of 10,000 Casts

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Mar 14, 2024

    Most of my winter trips to the Wallowa River are characterized by slippery travel across the Tollgate Crossing during an active snow or ice storm. The five-foot walls of packed snow confining the highway are intimidating yet comforting, considering that I might bounce off the wall rather than ditch my rig in the creek draining the Elgin side of the mountain. Most days are frigid, snowy, or rainy, so a bluebird sky means instant victory upon arrival at Minam State Park. Flow conditions were...

  • Palouse Outdoors: Hunting Late-Season Snowshoe Hares

    The Times|Feb 1, 2024

    The end of the upland bird and waterfowl seasons in the early part of the calendar year comes with bittersweet closure, but as time ticks further beyond that last hunt, the urge to venture afield pulls harder, like an increasing magnetic force. Fortunately, small game seasons often run into March, bridging that early spring gap before the wild turkey opener. Early March can be a fine time to venture afield, with bluebird days forecasting imminent spring weather, which is precisely why I seek...

  • Palouse Outdoors: Winter Rainbows on Rufus Woods Lake

    The Times|Jan 4, 2024

    Chief Joseph Dam came online in 1961, producing power through the first 16 of its 27 hydro turbines. Behind the dam is Lake Rufus Woods. Over 8,000 surface acres of the upper Columbia River stretch 51 miles behind Chief Joeseph's massive monoliths until pushing into the tailwater of Grand Coulee Dam. Each year, the Colville Tribal fish hatchery releases thousands of "triploid" rainbow trout into Rufus Woods. "Triploid" fish are genetically engineered with three chromosomes rather than the usual...

  • Palouse Outdoors - Local Conservation Organizations Have a Field Day with Dixie Elementary School

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Dec 7, 2023

    In late October, the Walla Walla County Conservation District (WWCD), Blue Mountain Pheasants Forever (BMPF), and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) hosted Dixie Elementary for a conservation field day. Alison Crowley, Project Manager with the WWCD, leads the WWCD "Conservation Connections" program, which promotes conservation-related outreach and education. As a part of Conservation Connections, Alison led Dixie Elementary School students through completing a riparian...

  • Boot Leather Wins Wild Birds

    Brad Trumbo, The times|Nov 2, 2023

    It's an utter fact, proven time and again, particularly in a state like Washington: wild birds in the vest are won with "boot leather," so to speak. Even in a spectacular wild bird year, by December, pheasants are scarce in the public covers of the Palouse. Private lands with the right mix of food and cover harbor dozens of pheasants as they congregate during cold weather. But rest assured, the remainder of the roosters are seasoned escape artists, skittish as hell and alive, thanks to their...

  • Bird Hunting Made Simple with Outdoor Technology

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Oct 5, 2023

    As I lay in bed flipping through the latest edition of a well-respected gun dog magazine, an article titled "What Happened to Simple" grabbed my attention. The author is a long-time columnist for the magazine who shares healthy perspectives and insights on various bird-hunting topics. In this article, he lamented technology as the ruination of upland hunting. The author said, "We have become so dependent on gadgetry, you might say we've lost our way...to discovery, to independence, to self-relia...

  • Palouse Outdoors:Eurasian Collared Doves Offer a Fine Early Upland Hunt

    The Times|Sep 7, 2023

    The raspy "cuh coo co" calls of Eurasian collared doves could be heard in every direction. It was 5:30 a.m. It's an absurd hour to be afield chasing doves, but August heat makes the birds lazy. The first couple of hours of dawn are the most productive. Being surrounded by birds prompted me to hole up beneath a pine aand rose bush on the edge of an opening where I could wait for doves to fly through. Pass-shooting is a standard technique for mourning doves where the hunter finds a water source,...

  • Palouse Outdoors: Grandma's Legacy

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Aug 3, 2023

    A satisfying aroma rode the heat waves from the grill where six smallmouth bass filets dredged in flour, egg, and panko sizzled in a quarter-inch of shimmering olive oil. The cast-iron pan rested on the grill's side burner where oil pops could fly freely without a belabored subsequent cleaning. Bass is an underrated food fish, in my humble opinion, which I formed at about eight years old. Grandpa Roy and I had walked through the cow pasture behind his house to Good's Pond on a warm, cloudy...

  • Palouse Outdoors: Sharing the Land and conservation values

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Jul 6, 2023

    Aldo Leopold (1887-1948) is known as the visionary behind modern wildlife and habitat management. He understood the connection between ecosystem integrity and wildlife abundance and diversity. Perhaps more importantly, Leopold understood where and how humans fit into the balance and how to communicate and connect people and the landscape. Leopold's theories on wildlife management needed proving, and in 1931, he found the perfect scenario. While living in Madison, Wisconsin, Leopold met a farmer...

  • Palouse Outdoors: The Phenological Calendar of Kokanee

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Jun 1, 2023

    Whether you realize it or not, most outdoor enthusiasts are phenological scientists. You may never have published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal or even considered proper phenology as practical in everyday life. Maybe you've never even heard of phenology. But if you appreciate the outdoors or even just vegetable gardening, chances are, you're a seasoned phenologist. Simply put, phenology is a branch of science dealing with the correlation between climate and environmental cues, and...

  • Palouse Outdoors: An Embarrassing, Unconventional, Wildly Effective Fishing Fly

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|May 4, 2023

    Seventy degrees with a cool breeze was welcomed, given the snow had barely left the northern shadows of the barn at home. I was surrounded by waterfowl and songbirds warbling, cackling, bickering, and flapping to attract mates. An all-around beautiful day to be on the water, yet I was well beyond bored as I bobbed on my pontoon watching my fishing buddy, Sean, yard in rainbow trout. Most days, I catch about ten percent of Sean's count, but this day, absolutely nothing would entertain my many...

  • Palouse Outdoors: A Photo Safari in the Columbia Wildlife Refuge

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Apr 6, 2023

    My predawn exhaustion caused me to miss the freeway exit and my goal of being at the Teal Lakes at dawn, thanks to a detour through Connell. My tardiness was irrelevant, however. The vibrant sunrise I had hoped for never transpired, but a brief period of blood-orange horizon presented over the rim of South Teal Lake. It was colder in the scablands than anywhere else that morning. Steam rose and drifted over the lake's surface while waterfowl silhouettes floated delicately along the shoreline...

  • Palouse Outdoors: A Fine Morning for Waterfowl

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Mar 2, 2023

    As I neared the river, a fog bank appeared on the horizon – an impenetrable wall along the highway corridor. It was disheartening to watch a beautiful January day disappear in the rearview as the sun-shrouding humidity swallowed me whole. Still, the foggy conditions were arguably better for jump-shooting waterfowl. Sunlight glinting from gun barrels and glasses betray me as I sneak through riparian grasses and timber. Pulling onto the road shoulder, I prepared for the approximate half-mile h...

  • The Final Day

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Feb 2, 2023

    Rather than hunting my traditional last-day trac tin Lind, I spent the final morning of the 2022 upland bird season with new friends Ryan and Jessica. They had traveled from Canada to Ryan's old Palouse stomping grounds to finish their season. Ryan and I met a couple of years prior on social media, connected by the Palouse and a love for upland hunting. Once he had dates set for their trip south, he graciously reached out with an offer to join them in some formidable yet productive covers....

  • Palouse Outdoors: Contemplation on Snow Days and Bird Hunting

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Jan 5, 2023

    As the December snow fell softly on the homestead, I peered out the kitchen window at the quail, songbirds, and pheasant that sought the bird feeders around the house. My double guns were locked in the safe. Four Llewellin setters snoozed on their beds by the heat vents. My desire to chase birds teetered on a tight wire between maniacal and non-existent as the thermometer plummeted, eventually bottoming out at six below zero. There is nothing quite like a snow day hunt, and there were plenty of...

  • Tegan Largent shoots for two points for the B-squad

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Dec 1, 2022

    At the bottom of a narrow east and west running canyon, on what little flat ground was afforded, stands the remnants of an old homestead. Barns. Outbuildings. Machinery parts peeking out from beneath heaps of blackberry and rose bushes. There is no sign of the old home. Maybe it was never there, but all signs suggest otherwise. Apple, cherry, plum, and apricot trees are scattered about the moist drainage. The fruit that falls is kept clean by the deer and birds. Elderberry hangs heavy with tiny...

  • A Timely Hunt for Valley Quail

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Nov 3, 2022

    One of the things I appreciate the most about valley quail is its laid-back personality. The older I get, the less likely I am to crawl out of bed in the dark to go hunting. I am still motivated, but my best sleep comes from about 4:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m., making hunts earlier than 8:00 a.m. less desirable. Coincidentally, valley quail tend to agree with me. They often loaf in the thick stuff on cold mornings before heading out to feed around 8:00 a.m. Eight o'clock is when I asked Dale to meet...

  • Palouse Outdoors: Women on the Wing hosts pre-season upland hunt

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Oct 6, 2022

    Smoke hung like a heavy fog in the Palouse River canyon, making for a simultaneously mesmerizing yet apocalyptic scene. The sun appeared ablaze, blood-orange behind the smoke as it climbed above the dark basalt bluffs. Ahead, the moon was falling behind the horizon over Connell as if retreating from the sun. It was massive and glowing orange but confirmed that the smoke was less intense over the miles ahead. Good news for the Blue Mountain Pheasant Forever's first-ever Women on the Wing upland...

  • Dusk on the Palouse

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Sep 1, 2022

    Stepping outside for the evening dog potty, the cool of the settling night air brought instant relief from the heat of summer. The moon appeared massive and low – the Man in the Moon eyeballing me from the horizon while shedding increasingly intense light on the rain-starved landscape. As the setters scattered in the dim of evening, the stillness became most obvious. Nary a leaf turned on the crab apple or lilacs. The scream of a juvenile Great-Horned Owl pierced the tranquility, and for a b...

  • Palouse Outdoors: Upland Pursuits – A Fly Fishing Farewell

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Aug 4, 2022

    The high cumulonimbus clouds born of afternoon heat, dust particulate, and inexplicable humidity morphed into a nebulous gray bank of doom. Nate and I were headed east into the Blues for an evening of temping mountain rainbows with big dry flies – his last outing before moving to New England two days hence. "Seems to storm every evening I fish the Blues," I said as we wound out of the foothills into the mountain canyon. "A little rain just makes the fishing better," Nate replied, ignoring the p...

  • Palouse Outdoors: Pedaling for Petals

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Jul 7, 2022

    It had been some time since I made the drive up to the Godman Guard Station. As familiar geography passed by, I realized I had never made the drive outside of hunting season. A steep and jagged ridge, narrow as a razor's edge, reminded me of a time one archery season when I contemplated trying to find mule deer in the bowls of the canyon below. Considering the pack out cured me of that notion. Passing Stockade Spring and Midway Campground reminded me of my last hunts for snowshoe hare and...

  • Palouse Outdoors: Taming the Tiger (Trout)

    Brad Trumbo, The Times|Jun 2, 2022

    The pond could not have been more than a couple of acres, just small enough that I could fish a full lap around in my float tube before the consequences of sitting belly-deep in frigid water required a scramble to shore. The shorelines were steep and shaded by conifers except for along the manmade dam, which allowed enough sunlight to encourage a healthy aquatic vegetation bed to grow. Per my usual mode of operation on trout waters, I cast a small wooly bugger-like fly on a five-weight rod and...

Page Down

Rendered 06/15/2024 05:13