Wednesday, September 13, 2017

2017 Ford F-150 Raptor Off Road Truck Delivers

Only the cab of a farm tractor
 sits you higher than the Ford F-150 Raptor 
Normally a full-size truck doesn’t have the pizazz to power you through any off-road situation, plus the bells and whistles to match. The Ford F-150 Raptor pick up truck puts that matter to rest, delivering jaw-dropping looks and torque to spare. Farmers in Colleton County dealt with 11-inches of rainfall during the month of August, but a small window of good weather before Hurricane Irma’s approach allowed them to gather crops like hay and corn. Shuttling personnel back and forth between fields is an ongoing chore, and the Raptor 4X4 Supercrew won’t let wet field conditions keep farmers bogged down.

Raptor Status LED dashboard display
Distinctive grill amid cornfield stubble
The week of September 4 began with the death of a cow for unknown reasons out in the middle of a 31-acre pasture that was too wet to drive in. Even though the 2017 F-150 Raptor could get you out to there in the pasture and back, its never prudent to create deep ruts in land that you prefer to stay flat and navigable for the future. The end of the week involved harvesting cornfields in order to bank the shelled corn into grain silos before the potential of tropical rains from Hurricane Irma. Harvesting the corn crop had a renewed urgency this year, after Hurricane Matthew blew many cornfields down to the ground in 2016.

Backseat of crew cab has lots of room
Some helpful features that I noticed while driving the Raptor are the forward-collision alert light on the dash, back-up camera, blind spot monitoring and a 360-degree virtual camera system. Getting to know the turning radius for this large truck takes a bit of time, but after learning to gauge the four corners of the Raptor I found making turns and changing lanes in traffic to be no reason to worry. Getting the Raptor into open rural space is surely the way to go in order to enjoy all that this truck can deliver, so it fits very well for those that don’t always drive within the lines of city life.

To view the entire feature article in the newspaper click on Colletonian.

To view past blog entries on pick up trucks click on 2014 Toyota Tundra - 2015 Ford 150 Aluminum 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

September Dove and Canada Geese Hunting Checklist

2017 Labor Day doves / Drake Waterfowl
The first shots of the 2017 wingshooting season in South Carolina rang out on September 1 when the month-long early season for Canada geese started, quickly followed by the opening day of dove season on Saturday, September 2. The start of the college football season only adds to the annual tradition of getting back into the field with friends for hunting, fellowship and a meal. Being in possession of a valid hunting license isn’t enough to stay legal when hunting doves and geese, so here’s a helpful checklist concerning a change in bag limits and season dates.

Writing these words the day before my own 2017 opening day dove hunt on Labor Day, I can feel the anticipation that all dove hunters relish. Recalling that I earned a 12-dove limit on the same hunt last year, a new 15-bird limit is my new goal. A chicken perlot meal will be served but I need to bring enough water to stay hydrated out in the open and hot dove field. The doves fly differently each day depending on the wind and other conditions so your hunt plans may require some flexibility during the day, and its these type of adjustments that hunters find sporting.

The doves did not fly my way, but I held my ground and managed to pick off a few of the grey birds. But if every bird hunt resulted in an easy limit and doesn’t leave you scratching your head about what went wrong, then the passion for wingshooting just would not be the same. Other hunters did take their limits, but not everyone, and so we take this hunt experience and add it to the overall tally of days spent in the field - all blessed days.

Old dogs and new dogs alike enjoyed opening day
To view the entire feature article in the newspaper click on Colletonian.

To view past blog entries about dove season opening click 20162014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009