Friday, December 31, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Top 5 Outdoor Adventures of 2010

by Chris Larsen

#5 Hot Air Ballooning Over The St. Croix Valley in February.
I was fortunate enough to take a hot air balloon ride with Scott Aamodt of Stillwater, MN. Scott has piloted hot air balloons for several years and his skills are a testament to his experience. We flew over much of Hudson, WI during our one hour flight. Most people don’t think of hot air ballooning during the dead of winter but it’s actually a great time to go. The foliage is off the trees and you can see right down into the woods. We spotted a very nice whitetail buck on our flight. Check out the video here.

#4 Fast Deer Hunt
I wasn’t fortunate enough to be carrying the gun on this hunt. But I captured it on film. Foremost Outdoor TV ProStaffer Jason Oswald closed the deal on a Southwest Wisconsin doe less than five minutes after we left the cabin. The deer was feeding on wild berries when we spotted her. It was a great management hunt that was so fast we didn’t really get a chance to enjoy the woods. Luckily, we had a few more tags so we spent the rest of the afternoon on stand looking for another deer. We saw plenty of squirrels and of course turkeys. We always have turkeys in our face when deer hunting and deer crawling on us when turkey hunting! Check out more of this story here.

#3 Minnesota North Shore Adventure
After skipping this trip in 2009, we resumed our annual family vacation to the Minnesota North Shore. The Grand Marais area is simply breathtaking in the fall. The mountains are ablaze in orange, red, and gold leaves. The colors are a sharp contrast to the crystal waters of Lake Superior and the streams that flow into it. Grouse and deer sightings are a common occurence. In the five years of visiting the area, I’ve seen just one moose. A large bull had fallen several feet to his death on the stony shores of the Cascade River. This area is a well known moose hunting spot, but I’ve yet to spot a live one! The most enjoyable part of the trip was watching my two-and-a-half year old son develop a love for the outdoors. Right now it’s limited to throwing stones into the water… but we threw a lot of stones into the water! To see my pictorial, click here.

#2 Bagging A Whitetail Buck
This was my second season of deer hunting on our family property. In 2009, I connected on a nubbin’ buck. This year I shot my first antlered buck on the property. The 2 ½ year old sported an eight point rack with an 18 inch spread. One of his points was snapped off and a portion of his main beam was pretty beat up too. I’m sure he had a pretty active autumn. What was rewarding about this deer was the shot. I measured it at 180 yards on the range finder. I’ve never taken a deer at that distance. The shot was well placed and he fell just 30 yards from where he was hit. Even more rewarding was that I had passed up several other bucks before taking this one, including a trophy class buck. He just wasn’t standing the way I wanted him too and I would have hated myself for wounding him. It was easily the biggest deer I’ve ever had in my scope. Five minutes after he was out of sight, I spotted my buck. You can read the whole story here.

#1 Fishing Has No Boundaries
Foremost Outdoor TV was invited to attend a Fishing Has No Boundaries event in Eagle River, WI this summer. Fishing Has No Boundaries(FHNB) is a program that gets disabled and developmentally disabled people an opportunity to fish for the weekend. Several Eagle River area guides and dozens of other volunteers donated their time and use of their boats to make this event happen. It was hosted at Wild Eagle Lodge, which is an incredible resort in the heart of the legendary Eagle River Chain of Lakes.

FOTV ProStaffer Jason Oswald and I spent a day on the water with two guides, four anglers, and their chaperone. The excitement level was like nothing I’ve ever experienced on the water. Guide Lon Millard, put these guys on a panfish honey hole. We put over 200 fish in the boat and 50 on the stringer. It was literally non-stop action. The anglers were highly competitive and had no problems with dishing out and taking a little flak. I’ve never had a better day on the water. Look for this video on soon.


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