Author: Scott Haugen

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Scott Haugen is one of North America’s most accomplished outdoor writers. With 17 book titles, more than 3,500 articles, and over 12,000 photos having been published in hunting and fishing magazines around the world, Haugen has been writing full time for over 20 years. The former host of over 450 TV shows, his programs appeared on many major networks, including Netflix, Amazon Prime, ESPN, Outdoor Channel, and more, in over 50 countries. A former high school science teacher with a masters degree and specializing in biology, Haugen spends more than 250 days afield hunting, fishing and photographing wildlife. Scott Haugen Host: The Hunt www.scotthaugen.com Columnist: Wildfowl, American Waterfowler, Hunt Alaska, Alaska Sporting Journal, American Shooting Journal, NW Sportsman, CA Sportsman, Salmon-Trout-Steelheader

Wyoming Elk Hunting Struggling to reach the top of the mountain, my tight, throbbing lungs worked hard. I was prepared for the challenge, but my body still felt the pain that comes with trudging up near vertical shale slopes at 10,000-feet elevation.  One last pause to catch my breath and ease the burn in my legs, and finally I reached the rock I’d been eyeing. Tossing my pack onto the tundra-like turf, I was awestruck with the captivating view from so high. “You made it,” smirked JJ, my longtime buddy and hunting partner on this trip who’d already recovered from…

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The old logging road on which my dogs and I walked was no longer drivable. It was covered in grass and clover, bordered by Scotch broom on one side, timber on the other. It was the perfect habitat for the mountain quail we were hunting. Echo, my three year old pudelpointer, took the lead. Nose to the ground she worked hard, 40 yards ahead. By her side was Kona, my three month old pudelpointer. Echo had been on numerous hunts and was proving a good mentor to Kona. As Echo moved forward, Kona stopped and went on point. He held,…

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My wife and I have been married for 33 years, and have always had a lap dog. Growing up, she always had small dogs. Of course, like many young girls, she loved dressing up her dogs. She even dressed up our lapdogs on holidays. When we brought gun dogs into the family, I told her the dress-up days would not carry-over to our pudelpointers. Then, and rather quickly, things changed. Before I knew it, at nine weeks of age, some pups were wearing pullovers. It was winter, and these were pups we were training for people. The pups were noticeably…

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A hunting dog vest is a specialized item. Each hunting dog and each hunting dog owner has their personal preference as to what constitutes the best performing hunting vest. Sometimes you put a hunting vest on a dog, and they immediately take a dislike to it. Their ears droop, they hunch over and won’t move. In some cases, hunting vests that cause immediate discomfort can be trimmed or fitted to customize. Other times there’s nothing that can be done; the hunting dog simply doesn’t like it. Then there are our personal preferences, the owners of our beloved canine hunting partners.…

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Though waterfowl season throughout the country has been underway for a few weeks, November marks the start of the best hunting. Cold days, rainy weather, and migrating ducks and geese means the hunting is only going to get better as the season goes on. With the changing conditions, make sure your pup is ready for the hunt. If this is the first season of waterfowl hunting with your pup, make certain you’re doing all you can to ensure the dog’s safety and comfort. When hunting waterfowl from a blind, having a platform for the dog to stand on is important.…

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It was my first hunt in eastern Oregon with my dog, Echo. She was eight months old. By now she had two months of hunting in western Oregon, behind her, but the terrain and habitat we hunted in the Umatilla Valley of eastern Oregon was different than anything she’d experienced. Here, it was dry and rocky with lots of different grasses. The valley was laden with pheasant and valley quail, and we found chukars higher in the hills. There were plenty of ducks on the river, which we jump shot and Echo retrieved. We had a good hunt and I…

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We were sitting on an old skid road with a mature stand of Douglas fir trees towering from the ridge behind us, waiting for daylight. No matter how hard we tried, cutting through thick fog with binoculars was impossible in the low light. We knew that in front of us was a big meadow, and we could hear cows and calves calling out there. The elk were there; we just couldn’t see them. That’s when longtime hunting partner and guide Jody Smith whispered to me, “Let’s move up a couple hundred yards and see if we can find something in…

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It’s August, and now is a good time to finalize road trips you’ll soon be taking with your gun dog. Just like you, your hunting dog needs to have all the gear, food and first aid supplies ready for travel. If you are traveling to other states or Canada, make sure your dog is up to date on rabies and any other vaccinations that may be required or recommended. If you’re hunting in Canada, you’ll need a current health certificate that is issued by your vet. You’ll also want to be sure to get a first aid kit ready for…

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Photos by Scott Haugen I dropped anchor, patiently waiting in my drift boat while two bank anglers below, casted spinners. I ate a sandwich, drank water and watched them for nearly an hour. Finally, they quit fishing and started hiking upstream. I drifted down to where they’d been fishing and let out a plug. No sooner had the Mag Lip hit the target water and a bright, hard-fighting summer steelhead went spinning through the air, my plug dangling from the side of its mouth. In short order the fish was in the boat. It was my third and final summer…

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Summer vacation is finally here, and with it comes warm weather and a burning desire to get outside. Wherever you go this summer, take your dog with you when possible. Just like you, dogs enjoy being out and experiencing new things. The more settings and situations you can get them in, the more well-rounded, happy and disciplined your gun dog will be. And the sooner in their life you can do this, the better it is for both of you. Socializing your gun dog pup is one of the most important things you can offer it. Remember, hunting dogs are…

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