View Full Version : Best of 2002

01-10-2003, 01:14 PM
Hey we didn't do a Best of 2002 review. I was reading the post about a book from Patrick and it got me thinking about what great books I've read last year.

Best Books: Had two, one current one older.
"Wild at Heart", John Eldredge
Great read about living like you should in the land of the free and home of the brave.
"Undaunted Courage", Steven Ambrose
Had it sitting around and finally picked it up. What a great read! Inspirational. We are flat out spoiled compared to those guys. Will cause a vacation to some sites on their trail.

Best New outdoor gear (let's say new to me, anyway):
Coolmax underwear, top and bottom
sweat and dry out, fast, unlike regular cotton. Comfortable and able to wear for several days without grossing you or anyone else out from the smell.

Tipi with stove
Not mine, but first time in a heated tipi. The only way to fly. Heat is GOOOOOD!

Primos Terminator Elk Bugle,
Drove my wife nuts, but talked to a bull for an hour and a half in the middle of the night and got him into camp (but not the freezer!?).
Attracted several hunters who were impressed with the sounds. Most said they were pretty good at telling the difference between real and a call. Fooled them.

Obernauf's Boot Dressing
Finally something that worked better at keeping my feet drier than GoreTex is supposed to. Good stuff from a firefighter in Idaho.

Never hunted with them before. What a way to go!

Mad Dog Silent Cloth Bibs
Liked the bibs so much got the longtail coat too.
Don't like camo, per se, but if you want quiet fabric seems like you have to get it. First time away from wool for me.

What about you? What was new to you that the rest of us might like?

One more thing! the $2.99 pocket folder I picked up at Jerry's Surplus. Use it all the time and can't ruin it! Do things with it I would never do with my Gerber Gator or Buck knives. Get one, you'll be glad you did.

01-10-2003, 08:32 PM
Hey GNW--

What a terrific idea! I'll follow your format.

BEST BOOKS: I'll second "Undaunted Courage", even though I read it several years ago. I agree with you on all counts. I'll also cite "Keeping Faith", by father and son Schaeffer. Inspiring account of a yuppie Dad who adjusted to his son's joining the US Marines. And it speaks right to the heart of the spoiledness issue you mention re Undaunted Courage.

BEST NEW OUTDOOR GEAR: Zeiss 10x40 Victory bonoculars with Tripler. I used these on a goat hunt in BC back in October. Surprisingly, my guide had an identical pair. Somehow we both wound up waaaay back there without a "real" spotting scope. So we shared the Tripler. Both the binocs and the Tripler were superlative. We got the goat too. Top of the line gear.

I can't think of anything else at the moment, so I'll reserve the right to climb back aboard on this topic should something surface in the old memory. I really like this topic, and think it should be illustrative (and fun)to all of us. I'll have to check out some of the stuff GNW cites. I'm not so sure about them horses though. These battered old knees seem to like my own hooves best.


01-10-2003, 10:58 PM
Best book: When I Was a Kid, This Was A Free Country, by G. Gordon Liddy.
For the first chapter dealing with the Normandy Invasion. I don't think we have the national cojones to do what those folks did, nor to tolerate it on national TV. But I am glad they did, and think America would be a better place if we did.

Best new outdoor gear: My hunting partner, the other Kevin, would tell you it's the Pointman. Got him one for his 40th, and he picked it up today. He's in love with it. Claims it is the only perfect thing he has ever owned and he is not the type that hands out compliments easily. I'm increasingly impressed with Wiggy's jackets. The sweater is very warm, and will be the new bowhunting jacket when the fronts blow in. The parka will be my stand hunting, but don't get cold special. Next step is one of the bags, as the old Slumberjack didn't quite feed the bulldog in a -10 December. If the bags are as good as the coats, we have a clear winner.

I am in the market for good outdoor pants, so the Mad Dog bibs will get a good look. Do they have a web page?

Other good things...WSM cartridges. A good WSM in a Rambler may just make me retire the .270. The Japanese call it kehaktansho. Translated into English: "Shorter, lighter, thinner, smaller."

Another good product...Gerber saw. Light, tiny and it works like a charm. Kehaktansho.

Best moment: Christmas day call. I took a fellow hunting last year. He's the brother of a good friend of mine, and a fine fellow. Never hunted, and has been in a wheelchair for 10 yrs after a motorcycle accident. I played bwana, and got him a 100 yd shot at a mule deer doe, which he took down with one shot. His brother had a problem so I worked out a deal. My fee...he had to buy his brother a Model 7 Remington in 308. I got a phone call on Christmas that made the whole year worthwhile. Now, he'll have to break the rifle in right, by killing another one. Or something better.

Other thing to be grateful for: The lovely and talented Miss Wendy, my fiancee. She'll camp, and fish, and just breathe mountain air without complaint, no matter the weather. Hiked for hours with blisters last year but would not complain because she found out fishing for brookies is fun. Finding a good woman is one of the smartest thing you can do, and I was lucky enough to do so on my second shot. She makes every day with her better. Now, to make her even more interested in camping year round, I will get a heated tipi for 03.

2003 will be a good year. Just think. 3 years from the 100th anniversary of the 30-06.

01-12-2003, 10:01 AM
Hey Kevin--

Isn't this the 50th year of the commercial availability of the all-conquering .308 Winchester? Another milestone, eh?

Well, I did remember another "Best", my new headlamp. Finally, I found an LED unit that does it all, and at a 5 ounce carry weight. The thing is called Ultra-3 LED Xenon. It has the battery saving lED bulbs, three of them, in a lower housing. These can be operated as follows: click the slick little side-mounted button and only one bulb comes on. This single bulb covers about 95% of my needs , both around camp, for reading, and for cruising the country. Click again and all three LED bulbs light up. These three, together, beat the sox off my old three-bulb Tikka and illuminate quite a distance too. But for real avoiding-cliffs distance seeing capability just click that button a third time and a very powerful little xenon incandescent bulb illuminates in the upper housing. This light penetrates the gloom for around 75 yards! On single LED power the three AAA batteries last virtually forever.

I know that Ed reviewed this light for Adventure Runner Magazine, and likes it just as much as I do. If y'all can't find the thing holler and I'll check out becoming a dealer. It's that good. My only problem with the LED's has been lack of long range capability. I hate getting "cliffed out" when making a descent in the dark. Problem solved now guys.


01-12-2003, 01:41 PM
Great topic. Here's my version,
1: Spikecamp. Can't say enough about this.
2: Smartwool long underwear. Very impressive.
3: Fly rods. I started dragging some buggers and muddlers around behind my canoe on weighted line. Brookies + flyrods = A good time.
4: LED headlamp. 3 oz. I'll never be without again.
5: Knu-pac. I know some of you guys will pucker over the external frame but...these things have a waterproof bag and they take the sting out of carrying around a canoe on your lid. Plus the whole thing will float with your gear in it in the event that you tip over.

Things for 2003 (hopefully):
1: Tipi
2: 14 lb canoe
3: Streamlight
4: Patricks book /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif

01-15-2003, 08:57 AM
My vote for best of 2002 would have to be Barnes XLC bullets. Getting great speeds, accuracy, and killing performance. With limited testing, it is so far 100% on 1 shot kills from my 7-08 rambling rifle. The rifle is pretty nifty too!

Best book was Devil Man With a Gun by Art H. Watson copyright 1967. Loaned to me by a neighbor that knew Art. Art was born in the late 1800's on a Central Montana ranch. His dad was one of the first miners to settle the Montana Territory. Excellent read about history and early life growing up in the West.