Lovey Dovey!
Sep27

Lovey Dovey!

Here in the South, we make a big deal out of dove hunting, so it comes with a lot of fanfare! Unless you shoot clays, you probably have not picked up your shotgun in quite awhile, so the anticipation is at full throttle. It’s our third year as members of Honey Camp Dove Club, and Opening Day is the time when we all gather and catch up with friends we may not have seen since last season and enjoy a pre-hunt spread with all the classic Southern favorites. Our landowner/hosts, Dale and Hilda Shelley prepared grilled pork tenderloin, baked beans simmered on the grill, and chicken bog. As we give thanks for the day and for the beautiful food, we pray for a safe and successful hunt. Everyone is anxious to get out in the field, but not before we each say a word or two to introduce ourselves to new members. For some this is a good opportunity to brag about their favorite college football team. It is also a time to go back over the club rules, with safety always being the number one topic. We take turns blind drawing our stands and the excitement builds as we hope we have pulled a stand with great bird activity and some good shade! As we walk to the field full of corn and sunflowers, it is clear that it will be an exciting day as the birds fly into the field all around us. As the first female member of the club, I was a bit nervous when I joined a few years ago. Now there are two female members, and I was so excited that two young girls are joining in the fun!  They brought their BB guns and already have a keen interest in hunting, which is awesome since the main reason I started my blog, Camo365.com, was to inspire young people to hunt. Within just a few minutes, the field was full of action—birds flying and the sounds of gunfire were coming from every direction, and I scanned the sky for a bird to shoot. The first bird down is always the most important for me, as it immediately gives me confidence. As I gathered up my bird, I knew this should be a great day. My goal was to limit out with 15 doves, since the South Carolina limit has been raised from 12 birds to 15 this year. I always stand when I shoot, and I am on full alert the entire time, ignoring my phone and any other distractions. I kept counting out loud to make sure I knew how many birds...

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Limited Out!!!
Sep05

Limited Out!!!

For those of my subscribers who are not on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, I wanted to let you know that we had an amazing opening day hunt at Honey Camp Dove Club!  The day was perfect from start to finish.   Our host/owner Dale Shelley and his wife Hilda prepared a gorgeous luncheon for us and everyone was eager to get to the fields.   Both my hubby and I limited out – my first!!  I have to say that clay shooting this year and some lessons really helped with my success along with getting my contact lenses right for wing shooting. We are hoping that the we have a great year and that any hurricanes or tropical storms stay off shore! Share this:FacebookTwitterPinterestGoogleRedditLike this:Like...

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Ahhhh!  Dove Season Opening Day!
Aug27

Ahhhh! Dove Season Opening Day!

Summer gives way to September and it has been months since you last picked up your gun. The tinge of excitement is in the air with opening day upon us. You gather up all your gear with great anticipation.  A slight sample of Autumn with it beautiful leaves and a crisp morning tease you, only to succumb to the familiar heat that overtakes those sweet but elusive breezes. But it is opening day and there is so much to be thankful for.  Combine that with football and it doesn’t get much better! Dove hunting has always been very special for me as it is a time to hang out with our couple friends who hunt together.  For  the past several years we have been members of Honey Camp Dove Club and it is so exciting to see everyone on opening day! There is always an amazing opening day luncheon as everyone gathers to catch up with each other.  As we go around the group and introduce ourselves to new members, there is always a good laugh as the typical characters hold court. Last year, the entire region got hit with tropical storms and of course, Hurricane Matthew.  It was a very tough year for dove hunting and we are praying for a successful year.  Our Landowner/Club organizer, Dale Shelley along with his amazing right arm/retriever,  Skip, have been working hard getting everything ready.  There is a tremendous amount of work that goes into preparing a dove field and no one does it with more zest, know how, and darn right determination, than Dale!  “I’m glad to say we have an abundance of sunflowers , corn, and even a couple strips of Brown Top Millet. I did have to replant about 5 acres of sunflowers due to the 5 inches of rain that fell three days after it was planted… but after all was said and done, we have more sunflowers than a show dog can jump over”, Dale reported. When I first started hunting doves my main concern was mistaking a tweety bird for a dove. But after a while, I was able to detect a dove easily with their amazing acrobatics.  I still am awed at how they dive, corkscrew, and easily confuse us shooters.  This year, I am hoping that I will have the best year yet! I have worked on my skills by getting out and shooting clays whenever I can.  My number one priority is always to have a safe hunt and not shooting low birds is imperative for all hunters! Besides safety, I am going to focus on staying hydrated and enjoying every minute...

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Daddy & Daughter, a Hunting Team!
Oct19

Daddy & Daughter, a Hunting Team!

There is nothing more rewarding than handing down the tradition of hunting to our children.  My 6 year old grand daughter, Gibbes is quite the young huntress.  She is a seasoned dove hunter with 3 years of experience hunting with her Daddy.  Retrieving is her speciality.  On this particular hunt, she retrieved 7 birds. She has the eyes of an eagle and carefully marks the spot where the bird lands and walks right to it.  This week she boasted that she no longer needs the ear protection as she is not afraid of the noise.  Of course, we remind her that the ear protection is also to make sure that her young ears are not affected by the loud sound.    The memories of these hunts will be fondly remembered throughout her years These hunts provide a great base for understanding what nature provides.  It helps us teach our children how important conservation is and how hunters are the primary caregivers for the wildlife.  Without our contribution,  wildlife would be unbalanced and ultimately, more species would become extinct.  It seems like yesterday when her daddy was going on dove hunts with his daddy.  They still look forward to hunting together whenever they can.  For that matter, her Mommy and I look forward to hunting ducks with them every year!   I guess you can say that we are truly a hunting family!Trippett 3, Lindsay, Trippett Jr., Maggie &  our sweet retriever for the day, Penny! Share this:FacebookTwitterPinterestGoogleRedditLike this:Like...

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I Was About to be “Skunked” at the Coveted Pear Tree Stand when Finally…
Jan07

I Was About to be “Skunked” at the Coveted Pear Tree Stand when Finally…

Experienced dove hunters go into 3rd season with not a lot of anticipation for a great hunt. Typically there are not that many birds,  and if they come in, they are fast, smart, and heavily feathered for the winter making their acrobatic maneuvers even more impressive if you could imagine that. But this past Saturday was an amazing day. The weather was perfect and members started arriving at Honey Camp Dove Club at noon.  We stood around the barrel fire excited about the cold front… 45 degrees, nice sun and cloud cover. It was time to draw for stands and finally,  I drew the coveted pear tree stand – guaranteed to be the best stand in the field!  This stand is so good if only 4 birds showed up. it would be at the pear tree. The pear tree stand could never be bought,  though many have tried! Honey Camp rules would never allow that! Nervously I anticipated the pressure I was under to hold up the high success rate other members have had at this fantastic stand especially being the the only female   full member. I was loaded up with ammo – two new boxes of Fiocchi, awesome shells I had gotten for my birthday and another box at the bottom of my dove pail.  Immediately, the doves started flying. I swore those shells had to be duds as I did not drop a bird!   I tried everything…shooting glasses on, shooting glasses off. I tried sitting down and  standing up. I dragged my dove pail here,  then there,  hoping to get the best angle.   I was humiliated as I missed each bird. I had a lot more success my first hunt of the year; what has happened? Are my contacts in backwards? My husband texted me from across the field and I had to tell him I hadn’t shot a thing. He said, “It’s ok.. a lot of people are missing. They are flying high and hard to hit”.   I felt a bit better. He reminded me to lead the bird. So I settled down and I finally shot one. Eagerly, I started after the bird and as fast as it dropped to the ground, it got up and flew! The afternoon was flying by as fast as the lead was flying. I was about to be skunked at the coveted pear tree stand when finally, I dropped one!! The bird hit the ground!   Whew I got a bird!! What a humbling hunt. But, I did have a great time being outdoors and everyone was kind to me. I took a bit of...

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Honey Camp Dove Club
Dec06

Honey Camp Dove Club

Opening Day of Dove Season could not have been any better at Honey Camp Dove Club.  We are first year members and we were welcomed graciously by this amazing group.  Being the first “full fledg ed female member” I was truly excited to be a part of this group.  There have been many females who have hunted as guests there, so the group was very happy to have me join in as these women have proved to be on their game!  After a blessing for the hunt and for the beautiful feast prepared by Dale Shelley, we took to our stands.  I did not by any stretch of the imagination limit, but I did not get skunked either.  I took home 4 birds and I was happy with that.  It was my first hunt with my new 12 gauge Benelli ultra lightweight and I was on a bit of a learning curve there for sure!  What a great time we had and Trippett did great taking home 10 birds.  Can’t wait until next week! Share this:FacebookTwitterPinterestGoogleRedditLike this:Like...

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