Ribfest and Regions Archery Tournament

archery hunting, arrows, big game hunting, bow and arrows, Camera, DIY hunting, Field Producer, hunting, Hunting Culture, Hunting with Camera, moose, Pennsylvania hunting, public land, Survival, The next generation, traditional archery, Ultimate Survival Alaska, Whitetail hunting, wildlife

Here is a few pictures from my adventures over the weekend competing in the Regions Archery tour in Warren Pennsylvania. I had a complete and total blast shooting arrows all day and throwing back BBQ ribs all night. I want to thank everyone in Warren county for their hospitality and generosity and for showing me a great time. I also want to give a few special shout outs to the staff and organizations running the archery tour, they all showed extreme professionalism setting up the best “world class archery tournament” I have personally seen. I also want to thank John Papalia and his family for hosting me, sponsoring me, and showing me an immense amount of kindness.

-Austin

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Hunting Whitetails: Part Three Success

big game hunting, DIY hunting, hunting, Hunting Culture, Pennsylvania hunting, Whitetail hunting

Due to work and the daily grind of life, I was unable to hunt Alaska frequently this fall. Knowing that the Thanksgivng holiday coincides with the opening Pennsylvania deer rifle season, I could potentially make up for lost time in the woods. This year Jordan Pokryfki decided she wanted to partake in the annual whitetail hunting festivities. After several days of hard work an preparation, this hunting season was about to pay off. Hanging tree stands, putting out trail cameras, sprinkling doe urine on our feet, you know the works…
I even resurrected the dead this year. I cut off and froze my last years buck’s tarsal glands, thawing them out and dragging them to Jordy’s and my tree stand. This drag mark made deer think that we were just another deer, possibly an old herd member.

The Hunt
We woke up at 430am, showered then began eating breakfast. Slamming three cups of coffee, Jordan, Auggie, and I were ready to attack the woods. Auggie headed to his tree stand, while Jordy and I headed for the double tree stand at the top of Allegheny ridge.
Jordan and I arrived at the double stand around o dark thirty(6:15am). We climbed into the stand and lashed our saftey harnesses to our anchor tree. We sipped on coffee till the sun rose, then began to wait. The waiting and the freezing was the hardest part, although we were determined. The one factor during opening season hunters can rely on is that close to a million hunters, maybe more, hunt Pennsylvania opening deer season. With hundreds, maybe thousands, of coordinated drives, hunters no-doubt move deer. Sitting and waiting a good travel corridor is often the most boring but most successful technique.
Jordy and I waited and saw eight doe run by at mock speed. Then it was silent for an hour or so, a small six point buck came strolling right past our stand at 40 yards. Three points a side is legal in the county we hunt, so I asked Jordy to put her cross hairs on the buck. She did and said, let’s let this guy get bigger for next year. Tapping cou on this small buck Jordan demonstrated traits of a seasoned veteran to the outdoors.
Letting the smaller bucks get bigger for the next hunter is always hard to do, however is a necessary part of being a true sportsmen. After the buck caught wind of us, he took off for the next county. We sat patiently another 4 hours before Jordy spotted two bucks running a top the ridge. I grunted using my primos buck roar and they turned on a dime running exactly for our double stand. Around 70 yards I yelled “burrrrrap” then whistled. After a brief moment of communication I told jordy to shoot either buck as I saw both were eight points or better and legal to harvest in our WMU. They both stopped when they heard my mouth grunt and looked beyond our stand. Jordy and I both shot, with the plan that she went for the first buck and I went for the second buck. Jordan’s shot connected with the first buck while my shot was deflected off an oak tree branch and missed. Her deer dropped. I reloaded my rifle immediately while the second buck pranced across the forest and almost out of shooting range. He stopped for a brief moment only showing his vitals through a tangle of beech nut trees, I touched of a shot and the deer walked off. Climbing down from the tree, Jordan and I walked to examine her buck. A beautiful eight point laying on snow covered forest floor. Being so excited and proud we both hugged.
I decided I had better check the deer tracks and the area of the second buck, as any ethical sportsmen would do. I found no blood, however I did find hair. Following the bucks tracks in the snow, Jordan and I noticed more hair and tiny blood droplets in the snow. Following this blood track another 70 yards, I stumbled upon my buck a beautiful broken tined 10 point. Exhilarated from our successes Jordy and I both hugged again and I cheer in pure excitement. What another wonderful time spent in the woods. Hard work and preparation payed off in a big way for Jordy and I, these sportsmen could not have been happier.

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Hunting Whitetails: Part Two 2012

alaska, archery hunting, Camera, DIY hunting, Pennsylvania hunting, public land, Rifles, Whitetail hunting

Hunting mature whitetail deer is one of the most challenging hunts in the entire world.  You must spend time outsmarting an animal that has developed keen senses to avoid detection by the worlds smartest predators.   Growing up hunting Alaskan big game animals is completely different than hunting backyard whitetails.  Both so challenging is so many different ways.   It’s safe to say that I have had many whitetails in the woods teaching me my lessons and waving me to go back to Alaska with their alerted tails held high.  Hunting this species and taking several proud specimens, I must say that I am a whitetail addict.  Every year I will be hunting these beautiful creatures and sharing with you all the tricks that I have learned along the way.  This is no “pro-staff” mumbo jumbo… No guff, just an Alaskan guy sharing the techniques I have developed to put venison in the freezer.

After putting out one trail camera in a heavily used deer crossing I found out that several bucks have been frequenting my potential opening morning hunting spot.  Catching several legal bucks coming to their feeding area to their bedding area, I know exactly where I will be putting my tree stand.

Directions for the tree stand

Purchasing the stand and putting the contraption together was a different battle, as there were no real directions only a diagram and a picture to follow.

Another legal buck coming through the area.  This guy is on the harvest list…

Putting together this contraption called a two man tree stand.

Hanging the tree stand at the selected tree based on the trail camera scouting report.

Stay tuned for part three of the annual Pennsylvania whitetail hunting adventure.  Opening day starts the 26th of November and it should be a blast!

D_A_PRO LLC Production Highlights- presents Mission Alaska

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DA PRO owner Austin Manelick pictured with Major League Baseball MVP Texan Ranger Josh Hamilton and family.

DA PRO owner Austin Manelick pictured with Major League Baseball MVP Texan Ranger Josh Hamilton and family.

D_A_ PRO LLC  is a full service media marketing provider, specializing in filming of remote and extreme shoot locations.   DA PRO’s, enlist a full staff of professional videographers willing and ready to shoot HD footage in the hardest most unforgiving terrain possible.   State of the art High Definition filming and audio recording equipment travels with each member of our globally experienced team of videographers.  D_A_ PRO, LLC is the next generation of video production, bringing revolutionary visions to the television industry.

PRODUCTION HIGHLIGHT VIDEO PRESENTS MISSION ALASKA

Follow this YOUTUBE link to watch the production highlight video a sample from the D_A_PRO LLC  Library.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72hU5wKa72s

                                                                                                 D_A_PRO LLC.

-THE PREMIER FRONTEIR PRODUCITON COMPANY.

Mission Alaska: You can help

Africa, Africa Big Five, Africa big game hunting, African Hunting, alaska, alaska hunting expedition, archery hunting, arrows, artic slope, bear charge, bear maul, bears, big game hunting, bow and arrows, bow fishing, camping, caribou, coyote, coyote attack, DIY hunting, extreme hunting, fishing, grizzly bear, grizzly bear charge, grizzly brown bear, guns, hog hunting, hunting, kudu, meat, moose, nature, Pennsylvania hunting, Pike fishing, public land, Rifles, salmon fishing, small game, Small game hunting, snow shoe hare, texas whitetail, The next generation, traditional archery, trout, Trout fishing, Uncategorized, unguided hunting, Whitetail hunting, wildlife

If you have been reading missionak or following at all, then you would know that MA is all about the next generation and spreading the word on how “cool” the outdoors is.  I have been talking with every person I know personally and contacting all of the youth I have met over my lifetime of friendships, in attempt to spread the good word of the outdoors.

Men enjoying the culture of the great outdoors.

I want to thank all of the readers and followers of Missionak, since summer of 2011 MA has grown greatly and viewer numbers are through the roof!  I want to thank you again for following and reading my personal message to the woodsmen in all us.  If you have or feel like you want to be more involved on missionak.com, please feel free to do so, in fact please help me!

If you have any pictures, videos, stories, anything that you feel appropriate for missionak.com, please email me at austinmanelick@gmail.com

Once again, I would love for anyone to send me interesting photos they have found on trail cameras, taken on hunts, taken on fishing trips, taken on antler shed hunting trips.  Tell me a story, it doesnt have to be a trophy buck that you have taken I would be just as happy with a picture of a readers first deer harvest of a doe than of a monster 10pt buck.

I want to connect with my readers, help me!

-AM

SEND ME PICTURES AND STORIES!!!

Contact

austinmanelick@gmail.com

Man cave: 303-838-7869

New Age Thrill Seeker

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Ever since my father took me trout fishing in a local stream after my first day as a kindergartner at Pioneer Peak Elementry School, I was hooked for life.  I had recieved a new telescopic (totally BA) trout fishing rod set up and I could not wait to test my new implements of attack upon the majestic rainbow trout.  My dad picked me up after school and we headed to Wasilla Creek. It wasn’t too long before we found ourselves 50 yards from the road, in a perfect trout hole.  My Dad rigged me up with a small spoon lure and told me to cast in the dark, deep hole behind the log…. I did so expertly, as if I had been a bass master my entire 5 year old life, after my third of fourth perfect cast I felt my pole tip jerk directly toward my line..

Trout Killer: the Great Northern Pike found in my secret trout fishing lake

What happened next was almost unexplainable, to this day I still have a hard time finding words for it. My tiny stomach lurched forward and downward at the same time, and for a split second I swore I was levitating.   For a brief moment, my body seemed to have defied gravity. I did not know what was happening but I knew I had a trout or something on my line and I did not want it to get away.  After landing the trout my dad and I shared a moment of silence and awe at that little trout flopping on the bank. My body let me feel the ground once I got a hold of my very first self caught trout.  My body experienced one of my first adrenal highs. I didn’t know what it was at the time, but if fishing could give me that knee shaking experience….then I would catch more fish!!!!   At a very young age I knew I was a thrill seeker, and believe it or not fishing gave me that thrill.  It was only later that I experience hunting for the very first time, which brought the thrill to a completely different level.

Everyday after school, between sports and home work, I would head to the woods or the streams carrying my fishing pole on my mountain bike. Later that bike would become an ATV..   Yeah sure I had video games, but getting to the next level was not gratifying for me because I knew the next level would always be there and I would always be able to beat the game.  There wasn’t too much fun in video games for me, deep down when I played them, I knew there would be a monster trout sitting under that log that I wasn’t fishing.  The outdoors was a challenge for me, every time I left the house I knew I would have to be clever enough to outsmart a fish or a squirrel.   My next personal metaphoric “video game level” would be my next small animal target, or my next dream hunt for Moose or Dall sheep.  After many years of small game hunting, I wanted to challenge myself, I wanted to to start hunting big game animals.

I will not tell a lie, the outdoors gratifies me beyond words.  The only way to break the experience with nature down such as catching a fish, harvesting an animal, or even seeing an animal, is the chemical response in the brain linked to adrenal release.  Adrenaline so to speak is what I chase, this chemical is released when your “rod tip jerks” or when you spot a grey squirrel and you’re hunting for dinner, or when you’re hunting for bull moose and a trophy 60 plus incher walks out with a rack thats wider than a door frame.  Your body’s natural instinct is to release this super human chemical giving you seemingless power, you must seek a thrill to experience it.  The harvesting of an animal is not the thrill, I get just as much satisfaction releasing a 26 inch rainbow trout as I would harvesting and eating the fish.  The kill is not as important as outsmarting the game animal, for instance letting a legal but small antlered animal walk by you instead of needlessly taking a life just because you can.  The taker of a life involves maturity and respect for the animals as well, close relationships are formed with the animals we pursue.  A last second buzzer beater, a half court 3 pointer  shot with no time left to beat the other team, that feeling as the ball goes in the hoop is a similar feeling to the experience of catching or harvesting an animal.

I don’t discriminate. I follow each U.S. state Fish and Wildlife regulations and within law, pick several legal game animals to pursue whether it’s big game or small game the thrill is the same.  I have been an accomplished big game hunter most of life, in part to a father who at one time was a Master Alaska Guide.  We have hunted both big and small game together and to me the adrenaline rush is nearly the same.  More exciting to me than hunting or fishing for myself, is sharing the sport with someone new, sharing the experience (the rush) of animal encounter with someone who is interested.  This last winter I decided to take my best friend and high school sweetheart Jordan Pokryfki small game hunting.

In high school her father, Vince, would teach us how to make port orford cedar arrows and osage orange self made D-bows.  We both had a love for the bow and making beautiful arrows, it was now time to put these arrows to action in the next challenge.  Noticing that Jordan was deadly with a bow I suggested we purchase a hunting license together, she asked me if we could actually hunt legally if she had purchased the license. I told her yes we could hunt small game (Snow shoe hare, ptarmigan, red squirrel, and spruce hen)because thats the small game open this season and off we went.

Jordan and austin

Bunny Hunting

Our first time out, we definitely looked deadly, however we spotted no bunnies during our snow shoe adventure.  Un-deterred  we decided we would head back out to a different bunny hunting location the following weekend, and this time we would use snow machines to get further from the road and deeper into bunny country.

One bunny, one zwickey doubled bladed broad head.

Our new game plan, using snow machines to get further into bunny country worked!  Jordan and I would succesfully harvest several bunnies this day, and had a blast doing it.  Jordan liked it so much we decided to go the following weekend to the same place, this time we would bring her dad and have equal success.

What a beautiful Alaskan winter day, an amazing moment.

Like I said, I don’t discriminate in the adventures I go on, the satisfaction I received would only be comparable to the happiness of  Jordan and her first successful hunting experience.   Seeing Jordan come to full draw with her home made refinished bow as bunnies zoomed through the willows, would bring me to a full draw smile and many awesome memories.

This year big game hunting is essentially coming to a close, and the populous of hunters are beginning to find themselves in a hybernation type pattern.  This is the exact time when the hard yards are earned  help you have succusfull 2012 hunting season.  If you have ever dragged a deer from the woods or packed out a bull elk, or bossed up a 200+ pound moose hind quarter then you know that you must be in not the best, but a pretty good shape  to safely bring your quarry from the field.  It’s to often that you hear a hunter tell a story of how he busted his ankle, or threw his back out, pulled a hamstring, the list of injurys goes on and on.  Being healthy and fit for the outdoors can only help to make you a more successful hunter, going further to help you get to that secret spot you only wish you get during the rut.  No matter if your a tree stand whitetail hunter or a back country elk hunter, being in shape both mentally and physically are factors playing into a successful hunting season.  Besting game this day an age takes hard work and perseverance, this is why I enter my hunting seasons as a professional athlete would enter his pre-season training camp.

Camp and Caribou on back.

I begin my pre-season hunting workouts during the winter, starting with an alternate cycle of a month of heavy weights with light conditioning such as non-weighted hikes or back country snow boarding hikes.  The second alternating month is an anaerobic high intensity high repetition excercise which is a simliar variation of the popular work called CrossFit.  Crossfit, focuses on a combination of different excersise in non-step repetition with little to no rest between exercises.  I made up my own variation of cross fit and p 90x, I like to call my workouts Wilderness X because its a combination of the outdoors with functional workouts.  The work out is similiar to what a hunter would go through during his time in the field(think spring bear on an Alaska hunt deep snow), I begin a snow shoeing hike with a weighted pack and enter one mile onto a pre-designated national forest trail in the middle of no-where Colorado.  Once a mile up the trail I pulled out my 40 pound dumbbell and begin the work out doing a combination of 5- 10 exercises between 15-30 repetitions each.  Once I finished this I would pack my weight away and hike back to the base of the hiking trail.

This work out mimics a spring bear hunt by placing the hunter in a game time situation such as a bear that is spotted, then stalked, then harvested. Long periods of heavy walking with a pack leading into several high intensity moments followed by another long period of walking.

That pack has a 40lb dumbbell inside

-The Wilderness Work Out

One Mile Hike with weighted pack (I chose 40 pounds)

Sumo Swings

Standing Triceps extension-20

Push ups 20

lunges 15 X each leg

Push ups 20

Sumo Swing

Standing Triceps extension 20

One mile hike down with weighted pack

This one way I prepare myself for success, some would call it a little crazy but each hunter has there superstitions.   How do you get ready for your hunting season?  Do you work out or go through some other form of ritual?  To each his own, what has helped you have you most successful year ever, and what will make you have the most successful 2012 season?

Stay tuned for the next post, the youtube video of the actual work out.

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Primitive Archery: Whats your method?

alaska, alaska hunting expedition, archery hunting, artic slope, bear charge, bear maul, bears, big game hunting, camping, caribou, coyote, coyote attack, DIY hunting, extreme hunting, fishing, grizzly bear, grizzly bear charge, grizzly brown bear, guns, hog hunting, hunting, meat, moose, nature, Pennsylvania hunting, public land, Rifles, salmon fishing, texas whitetail, The next generation, trout, Trout fishing, Uncategorized, unguided hunting, Whitetail hunting, wildlife

Primitive Archery my usual poison

Stalking animals with primitive archery equipment takes stealth to a whole new level. An animal taken with any kind of archery equipment is, in my opinion, a true trophy. An animal taken with primitive equipment means dinner, not to much argument with food on the table. Any legal hunting means to ethically harvest an animal should never be discouraged, to each his own. Respect other hunters, fishers, and outdoorsmen methods as you would enjoy others to respect you. Compound archery, traditional archery, primitive archery, rifle hunting, muzzle loader hunting, or even spear hunting try to enjoy others successes regardless of take method.

Hunter, Fisher, or Outdoorsmen?

alaska, alaska hunting expedition, archery hunting, artic slope, bears, big game hunting, camping, DIY hunting, fishing, guns, hunting, meat, nature, Pennsylvania hunting, public land, Rifles, salmon fishing, The next generation, trout, Trout fishing, unguided hunting, Whitetail hunting, wildlife
We should all take a lesson from the squirrels planting acorns.

More acorns need to be planted

I have never fully understood my fathers obsession with trees and his infatuation with planting acorn after acorn, especially now when reaching a mature age in life.  He has always had a scrupulous love affair with two kinds of trees, the red and the white oak trees.  He would always convince me, some how, to channel my efforts in the woods like busy squirrel with winter fast approaching to gather, collect, and plant as many acorns as I possibly could.  He would promise me that in my future years of life, I could sit under the very same trees I had planted and reap the benefit as monster Pennsylvania buck after buck would pass directly under my tree stand; within bow range of course.  All I had to do was plant acorns and all my big buck dreams would come true.  It is now in life after these buck dreams have come true, I must plant a different type of acorn.

The acorns planting really did help, thanks to the squirrel.

PA Whitetail

My personal life message is geared toward the youth and the next generation of outdoorsmen and outdoorswomen, there is clearly a decline in the numbers of purchased hunting and fishing licenses in most of the United States.  My message is to the youth, “GO OUTSIDE”, next challenge yourself.  “I dare the youth to catch a fish”.  I have played video games, and I have caught trout on fly rods and I promise you the thrill of catching a fish is much greater than acheiveing the next level in a video game.

Rainbow Trout caught on a flyrod.

Trout fishing

Colorado Creek

The revenue associated with video games, does zero to help with fish and wild life.   Meanwhile, the money raised from the purchases of hunting and fishing license directly helps to maintain abundant game animals in the states that we hunt and fish.   The costs of hunting/fishing licenses funnel directly into the state and wildlife agencies such as each U.S. State departments of Fish and Game, the money from these licenses staffs wildlife experts and biologists who are in charge of regulating game animal and fish numbers.  In essence, hunters and fishermen subsidize the costs associated with staffing and employing professionals to maintain healthy hunting and fishing for the next generation of hunters and fishermen.  These professional are paid to keep our resources abundant and our forests healthy, purchased fishing and hunting license are vital to sustain our natural resources period.

With a decline in hunting and fishing license sales across the U.S., who will pay for true conservation in order to keep our game and fish numbers healthy?  The answer lies within role model type outdoorsmen and outdoorswomen who take a member of the next generation of hunters and fishermen outdoors with them.  The answer to the future sales of hunting and fishing license start with a very small seed, the gardener who plants this seed must be some type of influential outdoorsmen.  The seed planted, metaphorically, would be taking a child or teen into the outdoors and getting them “hooked” on fishing or hunting.  How do you do this?  Simple, you take an interested young person or friend outdoors and help them catch their first fish or harvest there first animal.  Next show them the process involved to be an ethical fishermen or hunter, including respect for the animal or fish, and help them to prepare a cleanly and tastey meal of wild game.

The simple act of having a fish on your line, or having your first whitetail walk under your hunting stand evokes an adrenal response from the surrounding environment.  This interaction with nature releases serotonin a chemical in the brain linked to pleasure and satisfaction or the well being and happiness of an individual.  Receiving pleasure response from a nature encounter will only help to make the acorn of the next generation of outdoorsmen or outdoorswomen sprout into a beautiful red oak tree.  A red oak tree that will, hopefully in the future when reaching fruition will go forth and produce more acorns to ensure a healthy forest.

Future fishing license sales, the acorn.

After all of these years I have come to some understanding as to why my father loves his trees so much, the trees he loves will be around for hundreds of years after he is gone.  Those very same trees will be enjoyed by his grand childrens children, a pleasure he will only be able to smile down upon.  I have yet another challenge, this is to the role models who find themselves reading this article and who can make some kind of difference. I challenge you to gain the interest of a young person into the active lifestyle of the outdoor world, to take a young person fishing, or an interested person antler shed hunting.  I challenge you to plant a metaphoric red oak acorn, after all, the acorns that grow into beautiful red oak trees will be around much longer than we will be.

Caught on Pokryfki boat the "High Life"

MISSION ALASKA: 2011 Spring Black Bear. Spot and stalk, DIY hunt in Uknown Alaska.

alaska, alaska hunting expedition, archery hunting, artic slope, bears, big game hunting, camping, caribou, DIY hunting, extreme hunting, guns, hog hunting, hunting, meat, moose, nature, Pennsylvania hunting, public land, Rifles, Uncategorized, unguided hunting, Whitetail hunting, wildlife

This is our 2011 Spring do-it-yourself bear hunt in Unknown Alaska. Sled Necks pro-snow mobile rider Jason Semler joined Austin and Jon on a 100 mile ATV ride to a secret bear hunting location. This webisode starts live on the hunt in the Alaskan mountains, mid-stalk on a nearly vertical cliff face the bear, Jon, and Austin hold on for their lives.. Jon has the cameras and Austin has a longbow, backed up by his Thompson Center 50.cal muzzleloader. This bear hunting location was developed over a three year period in which we visited the location to track bears post hibernation activity. Our third year at the location brought success with a beautiful cinnamon black bear with muzzleloader equipment. Check out www.missionak.com for more webisode action of the 2011 Mission Alaska season.

This is the featured movie star of the youtube link below.

Click this youtube link to take you strait to the video where this beautiful cinnamon bear is harvested.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8x48ZtEWphU&list=HL1324431937&feature=mh_lolz

This webisode links the article from this summer outlined “How to develop a premium bear hunting location in Alaska”.