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Steve Wall of Wisconsin Outdoor Pursuits
Welcome to another edition of White Tail Rendezvous. This is your host, Bruce Hutcheon. We’re heading over to Wisconsin today, where we’re going to connect with Steve Wall. Steve’s out of Green Bay, and he’s the founder and blogger on Wisconsin Outdoor Pursuits. Steve, welcome to the show.
Steve: Thanks, Bruce.
Bruce: Steve, let’s just jump right into it. Let’s talk about Wisconsin Outdoor Pursuits, how they got started back in December 0f 2004, and let’s talk and let the listeners know what it’s all about.
Steve: Yeah, we started it last year, was kind of just looking to getting into the outdoor industry a little bit and was listening to some other podcasts, Philip Havens of Bowhunting Freedom. I listened to him and one of his podcasts and decided to start blogging and writing and emailed Phil and said, “How do I get started?” He gave me some tips. And last year on my birthday, started up the website and started writing some stories. It just kind of has grown from there.
Bruce: I know at the end of the show we’re going to give a shout out, how to get a hold of the URL for Wisconsin Outdoor Pursuits, but why don’t you share it with our listeners right now?
Steve: Sure. It’s wisconsinoutdoorpursuits.com.
Bruce: Let’s talk about one of your favorite blogs, something that stands out to you to say, “Hey, this is one of my favorites, and here’s why.”
Steve: I guess one of my favorites would be my first buck. It was a story I wrote for a high school project. I shot my first buck at 16 years old. It was a 12-pointer drop time, scored 153 inches. That was my first buck ever.
Bruce: And that was your first buck? Come on, this sounds like a hunting story, come on.
Steve: I just grew up hunting some trophy-managed land and had great opportunities that way. Yeah, so it was definitely a buck of a lifetime. The name of the blog is “Buck of a Lifetime,” but, yeah, it was my first buck ever.
Bruce: Was that down by Prairie du Chien?
Steve: Yep, that was down there, one county over from there down along the Mississippi River, so some great hunting down there.
Bruce: Oh, yeah, I used to hunt near Lancaster. I’m just trying to think what county, Iowa County is that?
Steve: Grant County.
Bruce: Grant County, yep, yep. I have an 8-point buck that I shot along the Little Grant, and I think that was in 1976. I still have that on my wall. You know, I was ecstatic, because it was just a solid-frame, two and a half year old deer maybe. I couldn’t have been happier. I know that country. I’ve trout fished down there quite a bit too when I was living in Wisconsin. Yeah, I love that country, and congratulations. Tell us about that hunt. Why don’t you just jump right in it? This is your first hunt. Was that archery or rifle?
Steve: It was rifle. I had been hunting for years before that and let quite a few bucks go, but this was Thanksgiving Day. I had decided to go out in the morning for a bit. I had to be at my grandmas for noon for Thanksgiving lunch and decided to go up there for a couple of hours. And I was just standing up in the field, waiting for my dad. He was sitting down in the woods. On his way out, he had jumped up the deer, and it came out. All I could see when he came out of the woods, it was probably a couple of hundred yards away, and all I could see was white antlers, and got it in the scope.
I actually ended up missing on my first shot. I went down into a little ravine, watching for it to come out, and I didn’t see it, didn’t see it
I actually ended up missing on my first shot. I went down into a little ravine, watching for it to come out, and I didn’t see it, didn’t see it. I looked down the field, and it was standing about 200 yards right at top of the field. I took a shot, and he dropped right in his tracks. My dad and I both went running up there, and we both got to it about the same time. I yelled down to my dad, “He’s down.” And it’s something we tend to laugh about to this day, I mean just a fun story, glad I was able to do it, hunt with my dad. There are a lot of hunting stories and memories of hunting with my dad, so something I really enjoy.
Bruce: Okay, let’s just take this apart and share with our listeners. So your dad’s walking out, you’re already in the field. Did you hear a crash, or just all of the sudden, there was the deer?
Steve: He had gotten a shot off at it too, right after he jumped it. So I knew there was something coming, and for him to shoot, I knew it probably had to be a decent one. Like I say, when I came out of the woods, all I could see was tall [inaudible 00:05:55], white antlers, and I got probably a little buck fever on the first shot and an opportunity at it.
Bruce: Now, what kind of rifle were you shooting?
Steve: At that time it was a 243.
Bruce: And scope?
Steve: Just a three to nine-power basic scope, nothing too fancy.
Bruce: And were you shooting off hand? Did you lay down, did you lean against a tree?
Steve: No, I was out in the middle of a field, it was offhand. Like I say, I didn’t get the greatest shot. I mean I dropped right there, I hit it in the spine, but I’ll take it.
Bruce: Yeah, so the first shot, you have no idea where it went. Then he ran down, kind of disappeared, but then popped back up, and you nailed him.
Bruce: Isn’t that a 200-yard shot? Is that what you’re saying?
Steve: Yeah, it was probably about a 200-yard shot. We actually knew this deer was in there. We had a trail camera picture of him about a month before I shot it, just wanted a picture perfect trail camera photo of him with the drop-time facing the camera. So I have a 10 x 14 picture of the trail camera photo to go along with it. Just kind of a neat all-around story.
Bruce: Oh, that’s awesome and congratulations for making a shot at 16 years old. A lot of people, I don’t care how much they have shot, off-hand, 200 yards, difficult shot.
Steve: Thank you.
Bruce: Now, let’s continue talking. Wisconsin Outdoor Pursuits, you’re blogging, and then you were sharing with me in the warm-up that you do some reviews of gear or other companies. Tell me about that.
Yes, I like to help promote other companies as I can. I call them “Company Spotlights,
Steve: Yes, I like to help promote other companies as I can. I call them “Company Spotlights,” where I hope maybe to learn a little bit more about different companies and how the companies got started and what people like about their products. I have them share a hunting story too. But I like looking at new gear and different stuff too. I’ve met lots of great companies through there and made some great friends.
Like I say, it’s just another way to help my readers find out more information and help spread the word about…some of these are smaller companies, some bigger companies. I’ve done ones for SOS Gear out of Montana, and Phil Jack [SP] Chairs. Just a few different ones, Bison Coolers. Antler King, I did one for them. Like I say, there’s just a fun thing for me to do and just help spread the word about great companies.
Bruce: Now, how do you use social network to help drive traffic to your site?
Steve: I like to interact with the different followers I have on Twitter and Facebook, on Instagram too. But I’ll share a post on there and interact with different companies on there. And, like I say, I’m pretty active on my social media. I’m a little bit younger, so in my forte, I guess. So take advantage of anything that’s out there and help promote my website and get more people to read my stories.
Bruce: Okay, let’s talk about how do I reach you on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram? What’s your logins or signs? What do they call that, just your names?
Steve: Yeah, your handles or your names. On Facebook, it’s just “Wisconsin Outdoor Pursuits.”
Bruce: All spelled out, right?
Steve: Yep. I know on some of them I had to shorten the names, because Twitter was…
Bruce: Sure, what’s your Twitter?
Steve: I’m not sure offhand here.
Bruce: Take your time.
Steve: On Twitter, it’s WIOutdor – but with only one “O” in “door,” Pursuit.
Bruce: Okay, Instagram?
Steve: That one, I am not sure offhand on Instagram. I think it was WIOutdoorPursuits on there.
Bruce: Okay. We’ll find it. We’ll find it. Okay, thanks.
Now, let’s jump right into lessons learned from White Tail hunting. You’re younger than I am. Most people in the world are younger than I am, actually. That’s a joke, you can laugh. It’s true, though. I’m 69 years old. So I’ve lived a few years. But anyway, having said that, share some lessons learned. Now, at 16, you put a gorgeous deer on the ground, so you learned some lessons there, I’m sure. But let’s just share two or three of them with our listeners.
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