Tag Archives: Hunting

Working Remotely while Entertaining and Educating your Kids-with Conservation

Strange Times

As an American workforce reacts to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us are finding ourselves in uncharted territory. Working from home, school and daycare closures and the uncertainty of life as we know it. In these strange times though, we do know a couple of things. First and foremost is that this will pass. Second, that our love for the outdoors will not die. Third, it is exponentially more difficult to get any work done at home with each repetition of Frozen II blaring in the background.

Here at Powderhook, we decided to put our heads together to give you some resources and tools to help you occupy your kids so that you can get some work done. More importantly, though, we wanted to help you take your kids’ education into your own hands during this time. We want to help you mold a conservation-minded generation and inspire your kids to get outside once this is all over. In addition to the hard work and dedication of their remote teachers, let’s take this rare opportunity to form a syllabus that can teach our kids the lessons of conservation, the importance of wildlife and maybe—just maybe—that their parents still have something to teach them.

Educational Resources

Arizona Game & Fish’s “Learning From Home”boasts an impressive suite of online educational tools for kids that can be done anytime and anywhere. Some can be printed out (or offered as a digital download), while others can be viewed directly online.

The “Focus Wild” issues feature pdf’s that can be printed out from the Department’s Arizona Wildlife Views magazine. These lessons cover everything from learning about becoming “Bear Aware”, understanding “Water Adaptations” and introducing your kids to “Aldo Leopold”. Simply print these articles out the night before or load them on a tablet and make sure you have the requisite materials (if any) for the associated activities. We recommend that your student (or student leader) be at a 3rd-grade reading level or higher for these activities.

Arizona Game & Fish also has a “Wild Kids” learning series which features educational worksheet activities organized by grade level. In these lessons, your students can learn about topics such as “Protecting Wildlife(4th-6th Grade)”, “Riparian Habitats(Kindergarten-3rd Grade)” & “Fire Ecology(7th Grade-12th Grade”.

Pennsylvania’s Game Commission has plenty to offer on its education page. One program in particular that stands out is its “Envirothon Program” which offers learning objectives, reference material and learning enhancements geared towards identifying different species of trees. We recommend this course for Junior and Senior high students.

Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency hosts several “Fun Links” for kids that are both entertaining and educational. One of our favorites is the “Educational Coloring Book”. These coloring activities, which are easily printed out, allow your younger students to not only color but learn fun conservation-oriented facts. It has the added benefit of giving young children the early practice of animal species identification.

Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources gives you all the tools and some reading materials for your students to set up an in-depth curriculum through their “Learning to Hunt Activity Guide”. This guide will require a bit more preparation on your part as the educator, but it has an extremely fulfilling and knowledge-intensive course load. Some lessons require less preparation than others. We recommend these activities for students that can enjoy reading around topics such as “What Should I do?- Outdoors Ethics”, “Calling a Trophy Tom” and “Navigating Naturally”. Take a moment to browse through some of the lessons to see which ones will work for your schedule, environment and your student’s education level.

New Mexico’s Department of Game & Fish gives you “Discover New Mexico Wildlife Education” which offers a curriculum that is focused on New Mexico wildlife and wildlife management. Don’t worry though, kids from all states can benefit from the coursework. These lessons are intended for upper elementary and middle school grade students. However, if you have a wide age range of kids, a middle or high school-aged student could lead the younger students in the coursework.

Ducks Unlimited’s Greenwing Program offers a very interactive and fun suite of educational tools to help younger students learn all about waterfowl and wetland conservation. Activities include printable coloring exercises that help with species identification, early readers, an interactive feature story, animal jokes, and videos. They also have Educational Games such as “Duck Shooter”, “Jumper Frog”, “Match the Waterfowl” and “Find the Green Wing” which are sure to keep your students entertained (and educated!) for hours.

Pheasants Forever also has a website that’s full of pheasant facts for your students to impress the neighborhood kids with. That is, once we can begin reducing our social distancing practices.

QDMA (Quality Deer Management Association) has an online classroom for those students that are serious about deer hunting and that are looking to take their knowledge of deer, habitat, and hunting to the next level. At the end of these courses, your little deer hunter will probably be able to teach you a thing or two in the deer woods this upcoming season.

Online Hunter Education Courses

Online Hunters Education Courses: You could also take this time to enroll your child in an online hunting education course. Even if you aren’t a hunter yourself, or if your child has already taken a hunter education course (or is planning on it) this is a great idea. It will allow your student to work his or her way through a self-paced, engaging and entertaining course that will occupy them for most of the day. You can also spread it out over several weeks depending on your student’s preference. The following states offer the International Hunter Education Association approved online courses for your student, which has reciprocity throughout the US. Please check your state’s requirements, which may include age restrictions and an in-person field day before the student can earn the certification. Nonetheless, an online hunter education course is a cheap and beneficial educational opportunity for your kids that can be accessed by clicking any of the logos below.

Arkansas GFC

Iowa DNR

Online Boating Safety Courses

Online Boating Education Courses can be another great opportunity to give your students the tools and education they need in water safety. These courses are similar to online hunter education courses in that they are engaging, entertaining and highly educational. The following links are just a couple of states that offer online boating safety courses. Please make sure you check with your state’s rules and regulations regarding reciprocity and additional course requirements for the certification of your young boater.

The Powderhook team wishes that you and your family stay safe during these transformative times. We hope that these resources can help you right now, but we know that they will help us in our long-term goal of creating a brighter future where every American can enjoy the outdoors. If COVID-19 is going to teach us anything, let it be an appreciation for one another, public access and our place in nature. Stay tuned for next week’s article where we will give you some back-yard activities to help keep your kids safe, interested and passionate about the outdoors!

Deer Don’t Vote

I’ll say it again. Deer don’t vote.

Through pieces like the those linked below, Sierra Club is attempting to pit consumptive recreational users against non-consumptive users in what can only turn into a race to the bottom for conservation. Surely the author realizes the villain in her story, Vista Outdoor, is one of the largest funders of conservation in this country, right? Nearly $88 million last year, in fact. You could add up the entirety of the financial contributions to conservation made by ThuleDAKINE, and every other company listed by the author, plus throw in hero brands like Patagonia and CLIF Bar and you wouldn’t get close to Vista’s level of contribution. That’s not a knock on any one of those companies… it’s just a fact. Continue reading Deer Don’t Vote

Student Externship Opportunity

Powderhook, an innovative hunting and fishing tech company, is looking for top-performing, ambitious and self-starting college students who love to hunt, fish and get outdoors – and want to get real-world marketing, business experience, and learn more about the outdoor industry. As an extern, you will share your outdoor experience and expertise and interact with others to help to introduce people to the active outdoor lifestyle we love and enjoy and, in doing so, help Powderhook grow.

Powderhook externs will be part of a college-based network of externs who will promote, largely through social-media interaction, the Powderhook app and participate in marketing and other events to raise awareness about the app while promoting hunting, fishing and outdoor recreation.

About Powderhook:

Powderhook is a cutting-edge hunting and fishing tech company dedicated to helping people have better outdoor experiences, through an app that connects outdoor enthusiasts of all walks of life and experience levels. Through Powderhook, outdoorsmen and women can communicate with fellow outdoorsmen and women and ask how-to, where-to, or any other type of questions.

Whether someone is new to the outdoors or an experienced hunter, they can ask their outdoor-related questions on the app and someone in their area or the area they are asking about will help get them on the right track. Are fishing biting on Lake So-and-So; are ducks showing up from the north yet; is ABC Public Hunting Area full of deer; what’s the best bait for crappie in your area; are spring gobblers still henned up – those are the type of questions streaming into the Powderhook App seeking help and advice from local experts.

As a Powderhook extern you will:

  • Be Part of an Innovative New Program
    • You will have different opportunities and experiences that will help you prepare for your career. These marketing and business opportunities will allow externs to gain experience, learn new things and sharpen skills.
    • You will be able to earn caps, T-shirts, hunting, fishing and shooting gear and other swag based on the level of your participation and success.
  • Be Given a Powderhook Pro Account
    • With this account you will be able to create a custom banner to post events and create personal content within the Powderhook app. Users have to pay for Pro accounts but externs will get access for free. This can be a key tool in marketing efforts, increasing your interactions – and your chance to earn additional gear and prizes.
  • Have Your Ideas Implemented
    • Powderhook encourages you to provide feedback on our app. Your ideas could be implemented into the app. Creativity pays off. This is a chance to be on the leading edge of, and participate in, outdoor-marketing technology.
  • Get Involved in Real-World Learning Experiences,
    • You will have the opportunity to participate in webinars, phone conferences, and speeches from the leaders in the outdoor industry. You’ll have a chance to learn from the top experts and company leaders across the outdoor spectrum.
  • Start Your Own Marketing Campaigns
    • Being innovative will make you stand out. You will be able to build your own marketing campaign like hosting events, posting on social media and pitching stories to the media to help market Powderhook. The more you put into your marketing efforts, the more you will get out of it. Imagine the resume-building potential of having your ideas as part of a national marketing campaign.
  • Learn From Powderhook’s CEO
    • You will have the chance to participate in Q&A’s with our CEO on many different topics ranging from starting a business to hunting and fishing. Be forewarned, he likes a good hunting or fishing story, whether he’s telling them or you are.
  • Have the Opportunity to Write
    • Your stories about your outdoor adventures may be published on Powderhook’s blog and your outdoor videos may be distributed on all our social media platforms as well as our blog.
  • Have the Ability to Publish Articles
    • You will have the opportunity to create content for our newsletter, which is distributed to all our app users
  • Have the Ability to Grow
    • You will have the ability to advance your role within the externship program. As the program matures, there will be opportunities to grow and advance into a higher role.

Extern Expectations:

As an ambassador of Powderhook, you will interact with other hunters, anglers and outdoors people as the face of the brand. You will be an extension of Powderhook, a person-to-person link between the brand and outdoor users. Keep that in mind as you try to be the best extern you can be.

It’s simple. We want you to share your outdoor experience, expertise, photos, videos, stories and anything else related to the outdoors.

For starters, we want you to:

  • Share photos and information about the brand on your social media, doing so in a natural way.
  • Interact with others who are asking questions about Powderhook, or posting in the Powderhook app. It’ll give you a chance to answer questions posted on Powderhook or interact with others to find answers.
  • Take the Outdoor Pledge. Powderhook seeks to unite individuals and groups that care about the true meaning of hunting and fishing. By taking the pledge you are committed to being a steward of the land, promoting goodwill through strong ethics, honoring the beauty and fragility of nature, acting lawfully and respectfully, and teaching the next generation to do the same.
  • Recruit other ambassadors. We want the Powderhook Externship program to spread to campuses across the nation. You can help by introducing friends, acquaintances or hunting and fishing buddies at other colleges.

Extern Objectives:

As part of Powderhook’s Externship Program, your objectives will be to market Powderhook any way you think will reach the most potential users effectively. The main objectives are getting people to download the app, app interactions, increasing brand awareness, and developing content within the app.

  • Use marketing tools
    • Social media platforms
    • Creating marketing campaigns
    • Creating your own marketing idea
  • Increase Brand Awareness
    • Host events that Powderhook will sponsor to help promote brand awareness
    • Attend events on campus and talk about Powderhook and our mission
  • Get New Users to Download the App
    • Use your creative marketing ideas and resources to market to potential users
  • Creating Content
    • Your content will come from:
      • Being an active user in the app, asking questions, answering questions, posting reports of your outdoor activities
    • Writing stories to post on Powderhook’s blog
    • Helping create newsletter articles
  • Goals for Externs
    • Earning swag by surpassing milestones of the number of people downloading the app
    • Increasing your cred in the app. Cred is a scale that tells us how much a user- is posting, commenting, and liking posts in the app. The more posts, comments and likes earned by the extern, the more cred.
    • Regularly posting on social media platforms.
  • Extern Challenges:
    • Challenges will be held throughout the externship. We will have campus vs. campus challenges as well as intramural campus challenges. The goal of challenges is to bring out the competitive and creative side of each extern. Coming up with new and innovative ways to outperform your peers can make you a challenge winner and earn prizes.
  • What Else You Need to Know
    • As a part of Powderhook you will gain real-world working and learning experience you can proudly add to your resume. This is ideal for creative self-thinkers who are willing to think out-of-the-box and make things happen
    • Along with all of the access you will have being an extern, you will also be able to earn awesome swag from Powderhook and our partner companies.
    • Your experience with Powderhook will be what you make it but we will be here to guide you step-by-step to get started and help you do the best work – while giving you room to let your creative energies loose. In a nutshell, this program is a unique opportunity for anyone who is an avid outdoorsmen in college who wants to learn more about start-up businesses and gain experience in marketing. It’s a real resume builder. We want you to enjoy working with Powderhook and we will do everything we can to make your experience with the program as enjoyable and rewarding as possible.


To apply for the Powderhook Externship Program go to this link-> https://goo.gl/forms/xTn6SOXAjniweXxv2

If you have questions email, sam@powderhook.com

Hunter Finds A Bear Sitting In His Treestand

Expecting to spend some time in his treestand, this hunter was surprised to see a black bear had already claimed his stand for the day.

This video shows you can’t predict how wild animals are going to act and that you may have to adjust your hunt because you are in their habitat. This black bear got a lecture on what his role is supposed to be in the woods.

Watch this video as the hunter tries to reason with the bear that took over his treestand.

Video by  Jim Burnworth



My wife, Stephanie, and I just spent the weekend Christmas shopping in Chicago. Our annual trip through the aisles of Michigan Avenue and State Street is a fun change of pace from the streak of hunting and fishing trips that usually dot my calendar throughout the year. While in many ways I would consider Chicago a great American city, my perception of our third largest city took a few body punches on this trip. In my opinion, Chicago is suffering.

We saw marches, boisterous demonstrations from disenfranchised youth, leagues of tired, stressed-out workers, and in general observed a city of people with their bolts over-tightened. Hundreds and hundreds of police officers, visible in the photo above, lined the streets in an effort to maintain civility. Life is complicated everywhere, but have we stooped so low that we’re willing to accept this as “normal” in one of our greatest cities?

Our work at Powderhook is about getting people into the outdoors. Fundamentally, we believe a connection to the natural world helps people gain a sense of place and perspective and helps them learn to value the world around them. Certainly, the outdoors can be one vehicle for exposing people to a value system, but in a place like Chicago, it is flat difficult to access those experiences. The war on traditional values is alive and well.

According to Census Data, nearly 2/5 children in America is growing up in a single-parent household. Of the remaining 3/5 of American kids, two-thirds are members of dual-income families, leaving Moms and Dads of any household less and less time to lead a family. Only 17% of Americans attend religious services each week, the lowest number ever recorded, eroding the value systems taught by our faith-based institutions. As our melting pot urbanizes, gains weight and hustles to make a living, must we accept that our values are changing? Or, is there something we can do to preserve the important things as the superfluous tides roll in and out?

Chicago and all of America needs more Boy Scouts. Along with groups like Girl Scouts, 4-H, FFA, FCCLA, and others, these organizations exist to teach fundamental values that can be tough to find in other places. They seemed really tough to find last weekend in Chicago.

Read this excerpt from the Boy Scouts website. To me, this sounds the America we once knew and wish to see once again:

The Boy Scouts of America is one of the nation’s largest and most prominent values-based youth development organizations. The BSA provides a program for young people that builds character, trains them in the responsibilities of participating citizenship, and develops personal fitness.

For over a century, the BSA has helped build the future leaders of this country by combining educational activities and lifelong values with fun. The Boy Scouts of America believes — and, through over a century of experience, knows — that helping youth is a key to building a more conscientious, responsible, and productive society.

Mahatma Gandhi once said, “If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. We need not wait to see what others do.” I think he’s right. Time to go get my kids signed-up.

About the author:
Eric Dinger is the co-founder and CEO of Powderhook.com, an app built to help people hunt and fish more often. He can be reached at eric@powderhook.com.

Let’s say we completely ban guns

Our country has a huge problem. Mass killings are disgusting and we need to investigate every possible solution to reversing what is a growing trend. According to some sources there have been over 300 mass killings in the last 300 days. In our great nation, innocent people should not be dying in their schools, movie theaters,  places of work or at their finish lines. That much is very simple and a fact on which we can all agree. It’s pathetic.

Let’s say we completely ban guns. Continue reading Let’s say we completely ban guns



My cares fall off amongst the cattails and cornrows

The air somehow different here, crisp with a hint of harvest

Whiskey smoother, too, me and Grandpa think

Finally away, though connected to time and place

Memories rush back, as we repeat them anew

My heritage alive with family, friends and pheasants


When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe. – John Muir


Just as duck seasons open around the country, a new tool for sharing information about the migration is ready to go.
Cabela’s and Powderhook are pleased to announce the launch of “Waterfowl Tracker,” a free app that allows hunters to monitor waterfowl migration activity and harvest reports in their neck of the woods, and up and down their flyway.

Highlighted features of the app include four heat maps optimized for waterfowl migration. Eric Dinger, CEO of Powderhook, says it’s set up that way for an important reason.

“Each waterfowl species migrates at a slightly different time,” said Dinger. “We engineered the app such that users can see a map specifically built for mallards, other ducks, dark geese and light geese. In time we believe users will really enjoy the ability to differentiate the snow goose migration from the Canada migration”

Other features include observation and harvest reports, though the app makes it impossible to pinpoint the exact location of a single report. Powderhook CEO Eric Dinger said waterfowl hunters will appreciate the ability to contribute to the overall improvement of waterfowl hunting while not having to give up any of their personal information.

“As a waterfowl hunter, the last thing I want to do is give someone the specific location of where I’m hunting. So, we don’t use pins, and our heat map blurs the user’s location by anywhere from 20 to 40 miles,” said Dinger.

Waterfowl Tracker is a free app, thanks to a partnership with Cabela’s. According to Dinger, the team at Cabela’s and many others throughout the country played an important role in contributing to the design of the app.

Waterfowl Tracker contains several hundred reporters we call Insiders, and these individuals are field employees and pro staff members of our partner brands,” said Dinger. “Their feedback and on-going participation in the app helped us get to where we are today, and Insiders will continue to add insightful reports people can rely on. Users of the app will notice the logo of the Insider’s affiliated company on the reports these individuals generate.”

While the app is free, users are able to upgrade the app for $2.99 to include Powderhook’s database of over 650,000 public hunting grounds. Additional features available via the upgrade include the ability zoom as far as possible and several others to be announced in the coming weeks.

“Hunters play the biggest role in conservation efforts across this country through purchasing licenses, firearms and ammunition,” said Dinger. “These days, a hunter may only have limited time to prepare for and plan a hunt. We want to ensure they have the greatest opportunity for an enjoyable time outdoors, so they continue to carry on our hunting heritage.”

Waterfowl Tracker is available for download through the Google Play and Apple App stores and can be accessed without the app via www.waterfowltracker.com on desktop devices.

Species specific heat maps. Pins for your reports, no pins for the reports made by other people.


Timeline view of reports near you, or near any area you want to research.

Weather, wind, pressure and other data is automatically appended to reports based on the time and location of the report.

Guys, Take Your Little Girls Hunting

By Eric Dinger, co-founder of Powderhook

Life with three kids and a new business can be pretty busy. So, you can imagine my excitement when I found yesterday there was nothing on the family calendar and I was going to be able to leave work in time to make it out to my favorite dove hunting spot. Time to take advantage of one of the best parts of living in a place like Lincoln; you’re never more than 15 minutes from a dirt road!

As I worked my way through the day, a thought hit me. Today would be the perfect day to take Reagan, my four year-old daughter, on her first hunt! The weather was right, there wasn’t going to be a big group and she didn’t have any plans.

I’m always excited to get outdoors, something I think I come by naturally. In fact, almost every year my Dad says something to me along the lines of, “I’m 54… 5… 6… years old, and I’m still as excited to go hunting as I was when I was a kid.” Having now hunted for the first time with Reagan, I’m witness to a new level of excitement. Maybe that was the simple joy of a little girl and her Daddy spending time doing something together. But, I think there was more to it. Here’s a glimpse into our evening together. I hope you’ll use it as a reason to take the young people in your life out with you next time you go.

First things first. Mom needed a picture. Check.
First things first. Mom needed a picture. Check.

Next, we had to make our ceremonial stop at the gas station. Is it even possible to start a hunting trip without it?
Next, we had to make our ceremonial stop at the gas station. Is it even possible to start a hunting trip without it?

Jackpot! A spinny airplane candy dealy bobber with some Hello Kitty juice. Nice work, Junk Food Marketers, you win this time.
Jackpot! A spinny airplane candy dealy bobber with some Hello Kitty juice. Nice work, Junk Food Marketers, you win this time.

On our way out to the spot we spotted some teal on the pond. Reagan used her
On our way out to the spot we found some teal on the pond. Reagan used her “binocliers” to “make them look huge.” Right at about this point I realized how awesome this night might get.

We caught grasshoppers and butterflies until the doves started to fly overhead. Watching her trample fearlessly through the grass made me realize that we teach our little girls to be afraid of things like bugs. They aren't naturally all that caught up in how
We caught grasshoppers and butterflies until the doves started to fly overhead. Watching her trample fearlessly through the grass made me realize that we teach our little girls to be afraid of things like bugs. They aren’t naturally all that caught-up in how “yucky” things are. Note to self: Don’t teach her to be afraid of singing in public, dancing her butt off at weddings, speaking her mind, or talking in front of groups of people, either.

We had a little safety lesson. She learned never to play with real guns, to never ever point a gun at people, even the fake ones, and she learned that guns are safe if we're safe with them and they're dangerous if we don't follow the rules. She said,
We had a little safety lesson. She learned never to play with real guns and to never ever point a gun at people, even the fake ones. And, she learned that guns are safe if we’re safe with them and they’re dangerous if we don’t follow the rules. She said, “okay, Dad” as if depositing those little morsels into her long-term memory bank.

Next, I got to learn about all kinds of important things. Like, how bugs probably don't like candy and how Mom doesn't always need flowers, but we might need to pick her some anyways.
Next, I got to learn about all kinds of important things. Like, how bugs probably don’t like candy and how Mom doesn’t always need flowers, but we might need to pick her some anyways.

As the shadows got long, the doves started flying. She was ready.
As the shadows got long, the doves started flying. She was ready.

When the first dove hit the ground, she took off after it. It will never cease to amaze me how a little girl who wears Disney Princess gear 24x7 can toss on her jeans and mix it up with the best of them. With no hesitation, she grabbed the dove by the foot and proudly showed me she wasn't afraid. It was then that she noticed the blood. I feared for this moment, because I knew she would ask.
When the first dove hit the ground, she took off after it. It will never cease to amaze me how a little girl who wears Disney Princess gear 24×7 can toss on her jeans and mix it up with the best of them. With no hesitation, she grabbed the dove by the foot and proudly showed me she wasn’t afraid. It was then that she noticed the blood. I feared this moment, because I knew she would ask. “What’s wrong with his head… does he have a headache?” Ready, I answered, “no, honey, he’s dead.” In stride, she said, “well then we’ll take him home and we can eat him, right?” Right. We’d talked about this topic many times while fishing, but she had already made the correlation to hunting. The things we eat were once alive. They have to die in order for us to live. Simple, I guess.

It's hard for me to think of a time when she was happier to be with me. Not only was it the one-on-one time all little kids love, but I think she was genuinely interested in learning about hunting. She told me I was just like her teacher. That's high praise from a pre-schooler.
It’s hard for me to think of a time when she was happier to be with me. Not only was it the one-on-one time all little kids love, but I think she was genuinely interested in learning about hunting. She told me I was just like her teacher. That’s high praise from a pre-schooler.

From her frenzied 25-minute recounting of the story to her Mom on the phone to the unbridled joy on her face, she had made my night so special.
From her frenzied 25-minute recounting of the story to her Mom on the phone to the unbridled joy on her face, she had made my night so special.