Author: Jeff Helsdon

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Jeff is a passionate outdoorsman who enjoys hunting with his family in Southwestern Ontario, and beyond. Jeff looks forward to turkey hunting each spring, and then switches to fishing with his family for perch, walleye and bass in the summer. In the fall, Jeff is busy chasing whitetails, waterfowl, fall turkeys and moose when he isn’t working or pheasant hunting with his English cocker spaniel.

It didn’t take long for me to figure out that cod fishing with Newfoundland’s Quidi Vidi Charters was not your typical fishing trip. Someone asked Captain Kevin Battock if we would catch fish. “I guarantee you will catch fish and I will feed you the best fish and chips you ever had,” he answered. ”This isn’t a fishing charter, it’s a catching charter.” I had never had a guarantee of catching fish on a charter before, although it usually occurred. And I certainly never had the culinary guarantee that I would be fed the best fish and chips ever. Then,…

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By Abigail and Jeff Helsdon Some people say a gun is a gun. You can have an adult gun or a youth gun, and many gun-store salespeople say you should be able to fit into one or the other, regardless of age. When buying a gun, there are many elements to consider. You want to look at caliber, brand, style, weight, fit and many other aspects of suitability. Women now have something else to consider. It’s the question of whether they’d’ want a gun that is specifically designed to provide the best fit for women. If you answered yes to…

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“If you build it, they will come.” That famous line from Kevin Costner’s 1989 Movie “A Field of Dreams” was about a baseball field, but it could also apply to the John A. Halter Shooting Sports Education Center. The building of the center transformed a field into a first-rate shooting center for multiple shotgun disciplines on a scale that hadn’t been seen before. The shooting center is associated with Hillsdale College, a private liberal arts college. Hillsdale was founded in 1844 and has an enrollment of about 1,500 students. Competitive shotgun is a fully-funded program within Hillsdale’s Athletic Department. Although…

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Pitting themselves against the wariest wildlife, hunters need to have all their senses at their peak. The trouble is that many hunters have a compromised sense of hearing due to repeated exposure to gunfire. The latest in electronics can help hunters hear better. And for those who don’t yet have hearing loss, the equipment to protect hearing is better than it has ever been. Hearing loss starts at any noise exposure above 140 decibels (dB). The quietest of firearms, the .22 rimfire, creates 140 dB. Centerfire rifles and shotguns are noisier, producing 160 to 170 dB. You need to realize…

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Every spring, as sure as toms are gobbling, turkey hunting gear companies roll out new products. This year is no exception, showcasing many new calls, vests and firearms. Bass Pro Shops In a market that has limited options for clothing treated with insect repellent, Redhead is adding a shirt and pants treated with Insect Shield. This permethrin product repels all sorts of insects, including ticks, and it is good for 60 washings. The Tec-Lite pants and Tec-Lite long-sleeved shirt are moisture-wicking and fast drying. RedHead is also going at bug protection the traditional way with a mesh bug jacket with…

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…The Ideal Alternative to Lead In the early days after lead shot bans were put in place, one of the alternatives available was bismuth shot shells. After fading away, it has come back, and it has done so in a big way. All of the major shotgun ammunition companies now have bismuth loads. To fully understand bismuth’s potential, travel back to high school chemistry class and the periodic table. Right next to element 82 (Lead), is element 83 (Bismuth). This ranking means that bismuth has a similar atomic weight to lead. Shooters don’t talk atomic weights, though. They talk metal…

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By: Abigail Helsdon /Jeff Helsdon Not that many years ago, the idea of a woman hunting was unique. Much has changed since then, and now, females are one of the largest and fastest-growing demographics in hunting. Change has come quickly, and it has not occurred evenly across Canada and the United States. Even when I was a young hunter a decade ago, the idea of a woman hunting was novel. I am still the only female hunter in our deer hunting group in Southern Ontario. While we run into several groups during the week, no other group contains another woman.…

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A Great Sea Kayaking Option The British Columbia waters between Vancouver Island and the Canadian mainland are known for their diversity of sea life. It’s a top scuba diving destination and a hot spot for kayakers. Collectively, the Strait of Georgia runs between the island and mainland from the top to the bottom. The inlets and sounds off the strait are popular waters for sea kayaking tours and are more protected from the wind and waves. Known as the Sunshine Coast, this area is accessible by a stretch of road running roughly 100 miles north up the coast. It is…

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The past year saw many changes occur in the hunting industry, with companies challenged to find raw materials, struggling to keep up to demand, and ownership changes. Still, a few companies came out with some great new turkey gear that hunters may want to consider. Primos added to its custom-grade calls with a few new calls that are upgrades to previous models. The Freak Frictionite pot call is designed to strap on your leg or gun to allow one-hand operation. The Heart Breaker is a custom call with an engraved purple heartwood lid with a two-sided mahogany box. The L’il…

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“There’s coming out tonight boys,” predicted Newfoundland Where Ya Wannabe Outfitters moose hunting guide Barry Sweetland. Little did he know how true his prediction would be, with all three of the hunters in camp tagging out before the end of legal shooting time that night. For the uninitiated, Newfoundland is moose central, with high hunting success rates. Moose aren’t native to the island province, but were introduced nearly a century ago. Being in Deer Lake or Gander during September or October, is akin to one big hunt camp. Camouflage is the common dress and hunters crowd the airports, motels and…

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