The Muck Boy crew "was going to be in"
Mound City, Missouri the weekend of March
1st, for our 3rd spring snow goose hunt. As all waterfowlers
know this hunt is subject to the birds migration schedule which seems,
never to match up with our schedule, the last two years we found ourselves
here at the very, very end of the migration. This year we are totally
changing up - instead of being at the tail end - we are going to be
there at the very beginning of the migration for this area. This is
being considered early because of this years colder than normal winter.
As like the past two hunts we will be hunting with Snow
Goose Chasers, we have had such great experiences hunting
with Scott and George and they are always improving their operation,
like this year they have a new field that we just can't wait to get
into. Plus they've added new and more decoys.
We will be updating this page when ever there is important
information to pass along about this hunt, so check back often to keep
up with the action.
Winter will just not go away and the warmer weather of last week is
turning back to cold again next week and with very few birds in the
Mound City area and not much hope of any amount arriving this week and
with some good advise from Scott our outfitter, we have moved our hunt
to 22nd and 23rd of March.
2/24/14 - A large flock
of Snow Geese spotted east of St Louis near Vandalia, IL.
Image for Larger View
2/25/14 - Squaw
Creek Refuge is still froze over - There
is a limited amount of hunting taking place around Mound City at this
time and some birds are being taken. But if your planning on hunting
in the next week I would get with your outfitter and push back at least
Image for Larger View
Saturday 3/22/14 -
Weather for this morning is Cool with temperatures
in the mid thirties with a stiff north wind and partly cloudy.
Met up with Scott our Snow
Goose Chasers Outfitter at the Super 8 motel in Mound
City. Scott explained we would be hunting in a field about five
miles east of here, the same field we hunted two years ago on our
first Snow Goose hunt. We will also be hunting with four other hunters
from Springfield Missouri. Also joining us today are two of the
guys from the Muck Boy
Mizzou Crew. The field is corn stubble and is set up with 700
full bodies and fliers. With everyone settled in there blinds we
watched the sun rise and waited for the birds to arrive. Only a
pair showed up and the eight shooters made quick work of them. While
going out to pick up the birds, I spotted a juvie blue at the end
on the decoy spread and called the Mizzou Crew to take it. After
getting their cameras ready they made a great stalk and when it
finally took off, one shot took care of the morning hunt, with a
total of three. Note: most of the morning was spent
watching thousands of geese leaving Squaw
Creek headed north over Mound City. When we decided
to break for lunch the geese were returning over Mound City, quite
a show. After lunch it was decided we would hunt the pond, this
is a good spot to pick up migraters that come in looking for water.
Once everyone got settled in there blinds it was time for a quick
nap as the sun was warm and the temperature had moved up to around
forty. The action began with a pair swinging over the spread and
they made quite a large splash into the pond, thank goodness we
had a good wind, we just waited until the wind pushed them to the
other shore to retrieve them. A little later a few more came in
from behind us and three more hit the pond. Shortly after this action,
clouds rolled in and the temperatures dropped to the low thirties
which caused the action to stop, we never had another bird even
try to work. So we packed up with only eight for the day.
Squaw Creek Refuge - Here
is a short video of what thousands of snow geese look and sound
like. If you take this hunt make sure to visit the refuge when
on a lunch break, it is something to see, during the migration
there may be a million or more snow geese there, other birds
that can be seen are Bald Eagles, many different ducks, geese
and even white pelicans.
Sunday 3/23/14 - Weather
is colder with temperatures in the low twenty's, a slight north wind
and clear skies.
For this mornings hunt we are set up in a corn stubble field on the
west side of Squaw
Creek Refuge with 1500 windsocks, a few different
flying style decoys and a vortex machine. There is only two of us and
guide George on this hunt, as everyone else had to leave or gave up
because of the tough hunting conditions. The first bird arrived about
eight o'clock and decoyed well, a little Ross
Goose, a very good sign. Until about ten thirty we had steady action,
picking up singles and doubles but around ten o'clock with the flocks
returning from feeding and headed back to the refuge, there was four
or five flocks merging and working directly over our spread, and just
as you see on T. V. a bunch of these geese started putting their feet
down in front and on both sides of the blinds, now this is what we hunt
for, with only three guns we took five, absolutely awesome. We finished
the morning with twelve, including one very large adult Snow,
some juveniles which the guides and outfitters call "juvies"
and a couple more Ross
Geese. In the Afternoon we had to change up the spread as the wind
was going to switch and come out of the southeast. After getting the
blinds, vortex, calls and some of the windsocks moved we spent the afternoon
waiting for them to again leave the refuge for their evening feed. As
the afternoon wore on the wind did switch but it also died and the birds
ended up coming out later than usual, normally they leave between four
and five but with a warm bright and windless afternoon they did not
start to leave until six. We had an hour of good shooting, about seven
they again quit working the spread and stated flying high. We took eight
more birds with one being a very nice adult Eagle Head blue. All in
all a very good hunt, one we will remember for a long, long time.
As always we had a great time
and have learned to expect the unexpected when waterfowl hunting, we
now know that adversity is part of what greets the traveling hunter.
It is the opinion of many outfitters along with Scott that this has
been the worst spring hunting season since 2010 as far as numbers of
geese taken per hunt. On Sunday our last day, most outfitters were packing
it up, picking up all their spreads and heading home even though there
was still plenty of geese on the refuge and one more week to hunt. Below
is a few examples of what effects the outcome of your hunt.
What phase is the migration in? The breeding adults for the
most part are always first and the hardest to hunt because they are
being hunted almost year around and have been educated to the ways of
the snow goose hunter. If the juvies are around they are not as educated
and will decoy better.
What is the weather? Wind speed, wind direction, clouds,
sun, temperatures all play a part on your success. As on this hunt you
read were the clouds stopped the action on Saturday and a lack of wind
stopped the birds from working on Sunday.
Bird Take? Don't expect to shoot a truck full of geese,
can it happen yes but it is rare, in fact it's rare to get a hundred
bird day. Most outfitters will pad their numbers a little, but remember
they have a large investment and need to fill blinds to pay the bills,
expect from five to fifteen as an average and if you do better, consider