All posts by Mark Williams

Snake Protection Boots

Snake Protection Boots

Snake Protection Boots

Nothing concerns me more when I’m frog gigging than moccasins and rattle snakes. I couldn’t tell you how many times my heart has stopped from a coiled rope on the ground or a slap of a twig against my shin. It is very distracting while your trying to focus on keeping a bullfrog in your light and lining up the gig.

Mocassin
Mocassin

It is amazing what a pair of snake boots will do for your confidence, peace of mind, and focus on the task at hand. I know my frog production goes way up when I have a pair of snake boots on.  The odds are low of getting hit but the ramifications of bad luck just one time are far to great to take chances.

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Check out this pic of a Cotton Mouth biting my gig with just a head. Outside of perhaps a black mamba, I’m not sure there is a more aggressive snake out there. Take all those documentaries about how cotton mouths are not aggressive with a grain of salt, they are nasty boogers.

Snake boots
Snake Protection Boots

In an effort to stay in the spirit of the affordable hunting and fishing website, I originally thought of promoting snake gaiters versus boots as they are much cheaper. The problem though is the gaps of protection you get from gaiters. The heel and front portion of your foot are prime snake targets for which gaiters will be of no use.

Gaiters are certainly better than nothing and if your budget is such that you have no other option then please go with a pair of gaiters.

For $159 the MuckBoots Woody Sport Armor Cool Hunting Boot is an outstanding choice. The only negative report I have seen on these boots is that it is a good idea to order a half size larger than your normal size.

Pros

  • Price, for the quality, you would be hard pressed to find a more economical boot.
  • No laces, much more conducive in keeping water out.
  • All around snake protection, foot and upper.
  •  Easy to take on and off
  • High comfort rating

Cons

  • Tend to run a half size small

Please click on this Amazon link and take a look at the MuckBoots Woody Sport Armor Cool Hunting Boot.  It is a highly rated and great option for Snake Protection Boots.

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Hunting and Fishing Facts

Some interesting Hunting and Fishing Facts,

With increasing taxes and the cost of permits on the rise, it appears hunters and anglers are being taken advantage of.

Hunting and Fishing Facts

The vast majority of people that hunt and fish are blue collar workers and have carried the burden of wildlife conservation on their backs for years. Over regulation of these sports has reached an apex as well, causing many to just give up. I wonder, is that the ultimate goal of the regulators?

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FACTS:

  • Since 1939, Americans have paid approximately $5.6 Billion for wildlife conservation through excise taxes on firearms, ammunition and archery gear.
  • Hunters and anglers support more jobs nationwide than the number of people employed by Walmart.
  • More Americans are killed in accidents involving vending machines than gun accidents.
  • On average, an angler spends $1,046 every year on the sport and hunters spend $1,638 hunting.
  • Through license sales and excise taxes on equipment, hunters and anglers pay for most fish and wildlife conservation programs.
  • Anglers and boaters have paid $3.6 Billion in excise taxes since 1952.
  • In 2009 alone, nearly $1.4 Billion was paid by hunters and anglers in license fees.
  • If sport fishing were a corporation, it would rank 51 on the Fortune 500 list.
  • If U.S. hunters were a military, they would represent a force of over 30 Million. China’s entire military force (largest in the world) is 7 Million.

sourcesOutdoor life, American Sportfishing Association, Wikipedia

c&o canalThe folks in these pics are just trying to have a good time doing what they love. Are they paying too much and are they over regulated? Would love to hear your opinion

Gator caught near Aligator Harbor

whether you agree or disagree. Try hard to keep it civil, but lay it all out there and don’t hold back. I will edit out any profanity. Please share this Hunting and Fishing Facts post on your social sites as well. Thanks for reading.

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Zebco Saltwater Combo

Zebco Saltwater Combo

I have fallen in love with the Zebco Saltwater Combo. Specifically, the Zebco 7-foot Hawg Seeker Spinning Reel Fishing Combo. My parents recently gave this combo to me as a gift and I have put it to great use. It is a Redfish slayer.  I captured a pic of the gift givers who are not going to be happy when they find out I included it at the bottom of this post.

This is a solid saltwater rod and reel combo. The reel has a strike Zebco IVsensor which comes in very handy at night when you have your pole in a holder while you’re kicked back in your chair. The sensor can be adjusted for sensitivity depending on wind and current conditions. The casting is very smooth and I can sling a bait 60 yards with this beauty. The spool handles 40lb line easily.

The rod is very sturdy, I have brought in some nice Redfish with the drag set tight and it handled the pressure with no problem. This combo can handle the big ones.

One thing to keep in mind is there are better quality rod and reels out there but you will pay much more for them. If you take care of this combo it will serve you well for many years. All rod and reels need to be taken care of. Don’t store them after fishing in saltwater without cleaning them first. Occasionally, take your reel apart and oil them, clean the drag discs, and replace the line.

Pros

  • Price, similar combos start at twice the cost
  • Sturdy combo, can handle large fish
  • Surprising casting ability, I can cast it 60 yards
  • Strike sensor, a must at night when you have multiple lines in the water
  • Overall great feel and smooth

Cons

  • Some reviews indicate issues with the strike sensor.  I suspect due to user error.

Give the Zebco Saltwater Combo a try, your won’t regret it.

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My parents
My parents, love y’all so much!!

Tecnu for Poison Ivy

Tecnu for Poison Ivy is the Miracle I have been looking for.

Poison Ivy II

I recently dug up some wild Cherry tree saplings in the woods to transplant. Where these saplings were located was a big problem. As I surveyed the area there was no way to get to the saplings without Poison Ivy IIwading in knee deep poison ivy. It was everywhere, on the ground, and climbing trees with root systems intertwined with all the other vegetation.

I was as careful as possible and dug up two Cherry tree saplings.  I really thought I had pulled it off without getting hit by the poison ivy. That was until the next day. It started off as an annoying itch following by redness and the typical welts.  Two days later as I was driving to Florida, it was unbearable. Every book or site you look at will tell you not to scratch it. That’s like saying don’t sing along to Sweet Home Alabama, some things just can’t be helped.

Within a couple days I had it all over, everywhere I scratched.  Then my sweet daughter came to the rescue. She told me that my son-in-law had a bad case of poison ivy a few months earlier and that someone recommended Tecnue to him and it WORKED!! That’s all I needed to hear, she gave me the bottle and sweet relief came instantly.  I couldn’t believe how fast the pain went away and the quick healing process after using Tecnue.Poison Ivy III

Over the years I have tried everything on the shelf and all the home remedies. Nothing worked, you might get a couple minutes of itch relief but that is it. Actually, the only thing that sort of helped some was vinegar and scratching. It created a different kind of pain which was a relief to some degree.

Make sure you follow the directions. You must wash it off after applications. Skipping this step will result in limited effects. I used it about three to four times the first day and then twice the second day and that was all that was needed.

It is important to have this in your medicine cabinet. If you apply it when you know you have been in contact with poison ivy or poison oak, you most likely will get away with no symptoms.

No need for me to write a list of pros and cons on this review, the pro is it works well and fast, I have nothing to report regarding cons. Please click the link below and give it a try.

 Tecnu for Poison Ivy

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Inflatable Fishing Boat Review

Inflatable Fishing Boat Review
Classic Accessories Colorado Boat

 

My Review of the Classic Accessories Colorado Boat.

If you’re like me, there are those spots you would love to fish that are just out of reach from casting from the shore. You imagine that 8lb mossy back bass right under the branch in the water on the island about 10 yards beyond your cast. That is why I decided to write this Inflatable Fishing Boat Review.

I was right on the verge of purchasing this boat when my cousin found an old aluminum boat with a trailer for $175. I split the cost with him and we put several hours fixing leaks and replacing all the wood on the boat. That is the only reason I didn’t go with the Classic Boat IIAccessories Colorado Boat. Had I not owned a truck to haul the aluminum boat I would have opted for this inflatable.

 

It is easy to slip into mission creep when looking for a boat to hit those spots that are keeping you awake at night because you can’t reach them. You start thinking about going 5 miles up the river or hitting the channel marker on the other side of the bay. The problem is to get a new boat to do this you’re in the $2,500+ price range. If your disposable funds are limited, keep it simple. Besides, there are many fishing advantages with an inflatable boat over a more expensive one.

At $499 the Classic Accessories Colorado Boat is an excellent alternative to a more expensive option. If it were me and I had a Boat IIIchoice of fishing the hard to reach spots now or wait until I could save big bucks for a full size boat, I would jump on the Colorado Boat.

Pros

  • Easy transport, will fit in a car
  • Perfect for spots with limited access
  • Much more affordable than other boat options
  • Comfortable seat with back rest
  • Rod holder
  • Very stable, you’re not going to tip this one over
  • Numerous pockets and drink holders
  • Motor mount and battery basket
  • No need for a trailer or place to store your boat
  • Comes with oars and oar locks
  • Very high ratings on customer reviews

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Cons

  • Not very maneuverable which is a side affect of its solid stability design
  • A couple reviews reflect a leaky valve or leaky bladder. Easily replaceable though
  • Must be careful if fishing where there are oyster beds, oysters and inflated things are not a good match

Click on the picture link below and check out the Classic Accessories Colorado Boat.

Thanks so much for reading my Inflatable Fishing Boat Review.

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Duracell 1000 flashlight

Duracell 1000 flashlight
Duracell 1000

My Review of the Duracell 1000 flashlight.

Most of my posts so far involve activity that either starts in the day and ends up late into the night or in the case of frog gigging, takes place entirely at night. One thing you learn quickly is to have at least one of the brightest lights possible in your possession.

Check out the quick demo I did from a hand held camcorder. The tree I’m shining is approximately 90 feet away.

 

Recently, I was out fishing between Dog and Saint George Island, FL with family from a boat. As described above we started our trip in the day and ended up fishing into the night. This pic, by the way, is of a King fish my uncle caught on the trip. IMG950311We had not intended to stay out very late but based on the size of this fish, you can imagine the excitement got the best of us. We were fishing to the point you could not see the shore. The boat ramp was on the other side of Saint George Island and about a mile west of where we were. There was absolutely no  way we could find our way back with the naked eye. I’m happy to say the Duracell 1000 flashlight bailed us out. Using the light to see the shore and using a Mossy Oak GPS app on our smart phones did the trick. Before we found the light it was looking like we were going to have an overnight trip on the boat as there were many oyster bars and channels to navigate. We were about 75 yards from the shore on our way back and the Duracell 1000 lit up the trees on the shore. It was amazing to get this much illumination from a flashlight.

Using this light’s adjustable beam you can light up an entire area as well. It’s almost like having a lantern.

I used to take very large spot lights to shine the ditches while frog flashlightgigging. Now, I just use my flashlight and do the one arm gig technique.

I’m not saying there aren’t better lights out there built for more durability, but from my experience you would have to spend around $80 to compete with the Duracell 1000’s illumination.

In going through the reviews, the only negatives I have found involve a faulty battery cap causing the light to malfunction.  Amazon’s overall rating is 4 stars which isn’t bad. The more expensive lights only have 4 stars as well. I can say I have dropped mine in the sand and from my truck and it never skipped a beat.

For $25.88 including 4 Duracell batteries, this is my flashlight of choice, hands down.

Pros

  • 1000 Lumens
  • 4 Duracell batteries included
  • Price
  • Adjustable beam
  • Selectable Power Save (dims light to save batteries)

Cons

  • A few reported battery cap issues (I have not experienced)
  • Turning light off requires cycling power button twice, once for strobe function and again for power save mode

Thanks so much for reading my Duracell 1000 flashlight review.

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Best Battery Trolling Motor

Best Battery Trolling Motor review. The highly rated, Newport Vessels 86lb Saltwater Trolling Motor, is available for an excellent price. Best Battery Trolling Motor

With 86lb thrust you won’t need to spend the big bucks on an outboard kicker. Plus, its a saltwater trolling motor, go where you want without worries with the Best Battery Trolling Motor.

There is a lot to consider when deciding whether to spend the extra money on a saltwater trolling motor vs freshwater.

  •  If there is zero chance you will use the trolling motor in saltwater, save the money and go with a fresh water model. There are several in the Affordable Hunting and Fishing store to choose from. From what I can tell, the internals are exactly the same between the two. Saltwater models have a protective coating on the outside.
  • If you’re purchasing a used trolling motor you could argue you would save money in the long run by just using a fresh water model for as long as it will last and then just buy a replacement when the time comes.
  • However, if you’re purchasing a new model, your warranty will be void if your freshwater trolling motor has been used in saltwater. It is a large enough investment to not take a chance. Also, though you may get away with using a freshwater trolling motor in saltwater for quite some time, If you have a seal leak, that is a game changer, problems will arise quickly.

I have searched the net and have found nothing but positive reviews on this trolling motor. I have yet to find a negative report, Newport made this one right!

The Best Battery Trolling Motor on the market for the price. Five star customer reviews. Free Shipping.

Newport Vessels 86lb Thrust Electric Trolling Motor Saltwater

  • 86lb thrust
  • 40-inch composite fiberglass high-strength shaft with heavy duty nylon mount
  • 8 speeds (5 forward & 3 reverse) – DC 24V
  • Durable all aluminum head w/6-inch telescoping handle
  • Stainless steel and zinc hardware for saltwater use
Newport Vessels Saltwater Trolling Motor
Newport Vessels Saltwater Trolling Motor

Many thanks for taking the time to read this Best Battery Trolling Motor review.

 

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How to surf fish

How to surf fish

How to surf fish

Affordable Hunting and Fishing store

Surf Fishing – The Quick Start Guide To This Exciting Sport (Recommend for beginners not  seasoned surf fisherman)

How to surf fish

Just to head off the comments, I realize the above pic isn’t of surf fishing in its strictest sense. I could have named the post How to Fish From the Shore in a Large Body of Salt Water, but that would not have garnered any Google hits and would be a ridiculously long  title. So, this post is about fishing from the shore in a large body of salt water, whether from the coast line, bay, or large harbor.IMG_20140819_151446I prefer fishing from the shore whenever possible as it is much easier. You don’t have to worry about the gear you forgot in the truck or running out of gas in your boat, and it is much easier to take care of business when nature calls. The only downside is the mosquitoes and sand fleas.

Here is a list of gear and thoughts that should improve your chances of a successful trip. No need to break the bank either, you will do fine with these suggestions :

Go to Affordable Hunting and Fishing Store for my recommendations on the gear listed below.

Rod and reel – Since there is a potential to hang something large and you may need to get your line out as far as possible, a heavy duty rod and reel and at least 15lb test line is a good idea. I recommend the Zebco Hawg Seeker Spinning Reel Combo and Shakespeare Surf/Pier Spinning Combo, 8-Feet.

Strike Alert – When the sun goes down and you can’t see your rod, a Strike Alert indicator is a must. You will find a pack of three for $7.69 in the Affordable Hunting and Fishing Store.

Trigger Hook Remover – I used to laugh at people that use hook removers. However, when it comes to taking a hook out of sharks and catfish, the man with a Trigger Hook Remover is a popular fella. Makes taking the hook out of any fish a piece of cake.

Bait Aerator – All you need is one of these and a 5-gallon bucket and you will have the best bait bucket money can buy. The South Bend Aerator is only $10.40. Tip – don’t use your hands to dig the bait out of the bucket, if there is any hand sanitizer or sunscreen on your hands it will kill the bait. Use a small net or make sure your hands are free of any possible contamination.

Bait Cast net – This thing will pay for itself in no time if you fish much at all. Often by the time you get to your fishing spot the bait you purchased at the bait shop is dead. A Cast net will get you right back into the game. There are several posts on YouTube that will teach you how to throw a net.

Tackle Box – I have started using the soft side tackle box and prefer it much more over the hard boxes. They are designed to use plastic containers so you can just load up the box with whatever containers you have loaded. Easy to switch between saltwater and freshwater.

Fishing Pole Holder – This one is very cheap. Just find a 3′ piece of PVC pipe with a big enough diameter for your pole to fit in and cut one end at an angle. You will need a brick or something to hammer the cut end into the sand. Best rod holder I have ever used.

The remaining items are a good flashlight, fold up chair, cooler (big enough to put fish in) and a cheap LED lamp (I keep one in my tackle box). Harbor Freight practically gives these away.

Remember, the best times to fish are during incoming or outgoing tides. With that said, anytime is a good time to go fishing. I downloaded a free App on my phone called “Tides Near Me” that is great for planning your trip.

Also, I came across this site that looks very interesting, Surf Fishing – The Quick Start Guide To This Exciting Sport. I ordered this after making this post. My recommendation is that it is a great resource for beginners but not necessarily for experienced surf fishers. It is all text and graphics. No video.

I Appreciate your time in reading my How to surf fish post.

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Hunting and fishing guides

Hunting and fishing guides

 

Hunting and fishing guides

If you ever want to have a unique experience, Swamp Honky Outfitters is the place to go. The owner, Judd, and I have recently become friends and I personally guarantee he is good people.Swamp Honky III

I have some video I will upload to this post as soon as I get a fire-wire cable so I can download it from my antique camcorder, so please come back soon to check it out. Includes a gator hunt and frog gigging at Tate’s Hell in North Florida.Swamp Honky I

Jud excels as a guide for gator, duck, deer/hog hunting, fishing, frog gigging, and guided tours where few folks visit. Also, if you want to find out what real gator tastes like, Judd can hook you up, it’s much Swamp Honky IVbetter than the farm raised gator meat you find in the fish markets. Check out his website to set up a hunt, buy some gator meat, and purchase an official Swamp Honky camo T-shirt.

Swamp Honky Outfitters

or call

(850) 251-4007, (850) 926-8620

Business end of a gator
Business end of a gator

 

 

Jud is quite the camo painter as well, he did this for me and my cousin. She was a bit hard on the eyes before he did his magic and is now ready for duck hunting.

Thanks so much for reading this Hunting and fishing guides post.

KIMG0471

 

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Affordable Hunting and Fishing Store

 

 

 

Fishing Potomac River Maryland

Fishing Potomac River Maryland

Fishing Potomac River Maryland

Headed down the c&o canal tow path to get as far away from people and park police as possible. I had already found a great spot where an island split the river and we are on our way.  The spot was about a mile from the nearest parking so bikes were in order.

Earlier in the day I had punched holes in canned dog food and put them in an old mesh bag that was tied to the shore to pull the catfish in. The fishing was fun and we did catch a few cats but it was all about getting away where you can hear yourself think and catch up with old good friends.

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A fire is a must when you’re cat-fishing at night. It cuts back on the mosquitoes and provides light to bait your hook. Plus, there is just something about a fire that can’t be explained, it puts you right with the world.  The only thing missing was a red bone hound running around. Man, looking at this picture I can honestly say the Atkins diet works well. That’s me in the blue shirt about 22lbs heavier than I am now.

A good tip for a rod holder is to cut a piece of PVC pipe diagonally at one end to create a sharp point. Just drive it in the ground, set your drag, and wait.

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If you’re going to have a cigar while you’re fishing, I highly recommend not forgetting a lighter or matches.

Hope to see y’all out there one night, give it a try, you will love it. You just have to make the time. Thanks for reading this Fishing Potomac River Maryland post.

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