VTX Bowstrings from VaporTrail

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A few weeks ago, I wrapped up a product review on VaporTrail VTX bowstrings.  I also spoke about their bowstring customizer.  If you did not get a chance to read the review, here is a link: VTX bowstring review.

VaporTrail provides great service backed up by some knowledgeable people.  You can find out about all of their products at:www.vaportrailarchery.com/ 

 

I am a Staff Writer for Ladies In Camo, an organization that provides articles, review and hunt packages for women.  Please visit the Ladies In Camo website at www.ladiesincamo.com.

Tree stands and me-not a match made in Heaven

I am terrified of heights. And while I know alot of people will sympathize and give me helpful hints, really I’m not listening. I can’t. Their advice will make sense, I’ll try it and then there I am again, stuck on the fourth rung of a ladder stand – sweaty palms clutching on with a death grip. People mean well but knowing myself,the only thing that would work for me is to suck it up, put on my big girl pants and just do it. Only I’ve said that multiple times as well.

Oh and to make this cosmic fear/joke even better, why should I just stop at being afraid of heights from a stand? Let me go whole hog on the whole height/fear issue. Walk up grandstands? Better just head on up and get comfortable in your seats; I will get there sooner or later-usually later. Drive through the mountains? You better knock me out or tie me up because I’m crying the whole way through.(Thank you IBO Worlds and Snowshoe Mountain for that enlightening experience.)

What’s your point JoAnn? Well since I bet alot of hunters or huntresses out there are like me, here is how I am SLOWLY working on getting over this fear. Or at least not letting it control my life anymore. Notice I said working on this because I’m not sure I will ever be totally over it.

1 – I am lucky enough to own a few acres and have a ladder stand installed on a tree in my backyard. Attached to the stand are two ropes; one used to hoist up my bow, the second is a lifeline rope with another smaller loop of rope with a prusik knot.

2 – I practice putting on and taking off my harness in my living room so I can do this as quietly as possible without getting everything tangled up.

3 – I then go outside to the stand. In regular clothes, I practice attaching onto the lifeline, climbing the ladder stand, getting to the top and hooking up the umbilical line to the strap which is located behind the seat. At that point I am double hooked-to the strap and to the lifeline. I do this step multiple times-it’s overkill, I know but it helps.

4 – After I feel semi-comfortable with the whole climbing and settling in procedure, I then repeat but this time I am dressed in my camo clothes along with any extras like a backpack. It’s kind of like dress rehearsal. I go to the stand, attach my bow to my hoist line. I then attach the umbilical cord of my harness to the lifeline. I climb up, anchor in and pull my bow up.I practice this multiple times to try to get as quiet as possible. I can play around with the option of hoisting up my back pack or climbing up wearing it.

5 – Lastly, after I am settled in and my legs don’t feel like I need to jump up and down with energy, I practice shooting from my stand. I think everyone should do this whether or not they have a fear of heights but for me, practice is even more crucial. It’s hard to concentrate on the shot when your entire body has adrenaline pumping through it and the deer isn’t in front of you yet.

For someone like me, I didn’t get through any of these steps the first time. I basically stood on the ladder rungs and sweated. Tried another step and there were tears involved. My husband’s hand on my ass while saying “Just go, You’re okay”, honestly didn’t help either. I did tell him what he could do with his hand and it wasn’t pleasant. At that point he left me alone. Although looking back he did hang multiple stands for me so I guess I should go apologize now.

I’m still really afraid of heights and that will never go away. But by chiseling away at that fear by little steps at least I can now function in a tree stand.

I wish you well this season!

Remembering 9/11

I remember the whole day. I arrived in my office to learn that a plane had hit a building in New York. Standing at the coffee machine my co-workers and I thought why is a plane flying that low? Then the second plane hit. We turned on the news in the office and I’m fairly certain it did not get turned off until we left. I couldn’t reach my husband by phone who happened to be working near the Pentagon that day. The phones were jammed because everyone else was trying to call their loved ones. Rumors that the Baltimore beltway was going to be closed down forced my boss to call it a day. I picked up my daughter from daycare and sat in traffic. I remember trying to remain calm as I got my son off the bus. I didn’t want the kids to panic however that attempt was too late as he blurted out:”Mommy all the other mommies came to school and you didn’t. I was scared.” Later I found out that many parents went screaming (yes, that’s right) through the elementary school, running to their children. I understood their concern, but screaming through a school yelling, “My babies!” never did sit right with me.

The days and weeks after the attack were exhausting. Visiting my church and finding other people with the same blank expressions on their face; the news showing people wandering around New York looking for family members. I remember feeling sad, lonely and tired. And I was one of the lucky people that did not lose a loved one to the attack.

Lastly, about two weeks after the attack I sat in my living room, turned on my TV and purposefully set out to find a movie, a TV show, something that had nothing at all to do with real life. I wound up watching X-Men on HBO. That fit the bill. It’s odd how your mind can find things to help you cope. I wonder if X-Men is on tonight.

Essentials for my backpack

Below are some things that are always in my pack. I just will not go into the woods without them – no matter the season.

Pack of tissues-especially during the spring turkey season!
ChapStick
Flashlight
Some wire ties for attaching a tag
Snips to take care of any branches I might have missed during the set up
Folding Knife
Pen for filing out tag
License and tags
Permission slips
Saline solution-nothing worse than a dry contact lens in the stand!
Reusable rubber coated Gear Ties
Pair of black Red Head glove liners-these work great to use in the dead of winter under heavy gloves or on the spring as a light weight option
Cell phone

Additional items will get added at certain times of the year for different seasons or my weapon of choice but there are some things this girl cannot do without!

A tip when setting up a ground blind or tree stand

Hunting season is almost upon us.  In some areas of the country, people are already hitting the woods.  As you are setting up your ground blind or tree stand, please do yourself a favor and make sure you have the clearance necessary to make your shot.  If you have done so already, it doesn’t hurt to go back and recheck.  You might be saying to yourself, “What are you talking about Jo Ann, I’ve cleaned out my shooting lanes?”  I’m talking about the structure of the blind itself, like a support bar, that you need to make sure you can clear.

If you are using shooting sticks for a crossbow determine a comfortable height now that will also allow your limbs and bolt to clear the blind before that animal walks out.  The bolt can nick the blind as it leaves the crossbow if you don’t make sure the clearance is there.

If you are shooting a vertical bow, make sure you can pull that bow back and your arm doesn’t get hung up on any part of the blind itself.  Pulling back a bow and having your arm hit the side will either make noise or make you reposition yourself on the fly.  This rush might end up in a poorly placed shot or you just get busted by the deer.  Work the kinks out now before the season to ensure your success.

And don’t forget to read more Tips of the Week from Ladies In Camo: Ladies In Camo on Facebook.  An organization I am quite proud to be a part of!

Where I live in MD, it’s hot and humid right now

So take a break, get something cool to drink and watch my husband John on a self filmed 2014 hunt in Maryland.  It’s a video that’s short enough your boss won’t catch you not working!

Here’s the link to the Youtube video:

John’s 2014 hunt

Happy Hunting! Jo

Have you heard about Ballistic Creations jewelry?

Did you get the chance to read my product review about Ballistic Creations jewelry/  What?  You didn’t?  If you are looking for some original, handcrafted jewelry made by a member of the NRA Business Alliance, please check out this link:  Product review at Ladies in Camo

Hey Maryland hunters!

It’s a month away from turkey season.  Have you been practicing your calling?

 

JoAnn's 2014 Tom

JoAnn’s 2014 Tom

This is my Tom from a year ago. Not my biggest bird but he was a big bully and had to go!  I will be writing my story about this bird in a later post. Photo credit: John Herbert

This is my Tom from a year ago. Not my biggest bird but he was a big bully and had to go! I will be writing my story about this bird in a later post.
Photo credit: John Herbert

My newest product review for 30-06 Outdoors

Hello everyone!  I wanted to provide you with a link to my latest product review on the Ladies in Camo website.  While you are there please check out all of the product reviews and hunting opportunities Ladies In Camo has to offer.

Here is the link:

http://ladiesincamo.com/licpr/2015/03/04/30-06-outdoors-deluxe-camo-crossbow-case-by-joann-herbert/

 

 

 

Picture of case

30-06 Deluxe Camo Crossbow case Photo credit: JoAnn Herbert