Kentucky Duck Hunting Report Archive

Posted By:
boatrower
Web Member

Central KY 01-03-2013 16:22
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 30-34 Degrees – Ice
Is anyone hunting KY? There is a lull in reports. We are shooting farm ponds that are not frozen and picking up mallards. There are bunches of geese but I believe they are locals that hang out on the horse farms. Freezing conditions don’t bode well. The dog stays home and the decoys look stupid sitting on their keels on the ice. Somebody please report on what is happening elsewhere in the state.

Posted By:
boatrower
Web Member

Southeast Missouri 12-09-2012 16:54
– – 50-60 Degrees
We hunted Southeast Missouri on Thursday and Friday. There has not been a push of fresh birds since early November and the birds we worked were mostly on to us. We shot 4 mallards and 2 shovellers on Thurs and 3 mallards, one shoveller and two snow geese on Friday. The area we hunted was beautiful, flooded agricultural land 30 miles off the Mississippi River. Its a 6 hour drive from Central KY and will be worth the drive when cold pushes the next wave of ducks from the North. Not seeing many ducks or geese here but always hopeful.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio river at Augusta 12-08-2012 19:59
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 45-50 Degrees
Duck hunt 12-8-12
I got up this morning to rain, so I went back to bed and got up late. I took Debi to Bob Evans for breakfast and after went to home depot and bought some wallboard for our work downstairs. By 11:00 the rain stopped and I decided to take the skiff to Augusta mile 426. I called Jim on my cell on the way past his farm and he could not go, he is having back problems. I stopped for coffee at the California market. Went up route 8. Tons of fishermen at foster. No duck hunters above the Dam. Pulled into the ramp at Augusta and I was the only one there. It was 50 degrees, river at 28 and no wind. The river was a sheet of glass. Put the boat in and headed across and up the Ohio bank. I did spot with the binoculars before crossing. I ran up slow spotting as I ran up. I passed Higinsport and saw nothing. About 1 mile below Straight creek, I spotted about 5 mallards ahead. They were a good .25 mile ahead. I crossed over and started up the KY bank. When I was still .125 mile below them, I saw that they got up and flew US. I don’t think I scared them. I continued up and crossed over above Straight Creek. I started down the Ohio bank at a slow idle. Nothing. I did see a beaver mound at the waters edge; they may get away with this above the dam.

I came to the bank that I had run up, so I crossed over to the KY bank. Started down slow. As I was motoring down, I looked to my right and there is a hen mallard crossing the river in front of me. I cut the motor and it was funning, she kept cracking as if she was trying to find another duck. A barge was coming up, so I pulled into the bank to wait for it to past. After it went by, I pushed off. My hen did not swim into the bank but stayed about 20 yards out. When I was maybe 500 yards away she took off. I headed down at a slow idle. Just above Bracken creek I spotted a hen and drake mallard ahead. They had a small duck, a grebe I think that followed them like a little puppy. They swam out and just kept swimming, and then took off. They left the poor grebe. I cranked up and headed across to the Ohio bank and started down slow. Below the ferry it is wall to wall dilapidated boat docks. Below moon hollow I spotted three geese sitting on a small wall at the waters edge. I cut the 25 and ran down with the troller at low. As I was running down I kept hearing ducks calling in the distance. I was so calm out that sound really carried. When I was 250 yards out the 3 Geese started calling, as if advertising here comes a duck hunter. They kept it up and then took off.

I started down slow. By this time it is 4:45 and so dark I was having a hard time seeing thru the binoculars. I spotted 2 mallards ahead. I started down with the troller on low. At about 200 yards I started paddling. They swam out and headed down stream a little and then went back to the bank. I spotted them with my binoculars, but the hen was hard to see. I got right besides them, and then turned the boat into them. They were dabbling at the waters edge, and ignored me. At 20 yards I grabbed my gun, and they got up. The drake flew up stream to my right, and I could not swing on him, so I swung past the hen and pulled the trigger, nothing. By that time she was a bit too far. I loaded one shell in and started down. I saw a bunch of geese ahead, they were behind some drift in front of me, and I got closer then I wanted to before I saw them. I cut the motor and started paddling down. They got up when I was at least 400 yards US. It is now 5:10 and I can’t see thru the binoculars. I decided to call it a day and crossed over and headed up the KY bank. I was hard to see but I jumped up two small groups of ducks on the run up. Home by 7:00

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Above Augusta, Ky 12-04-2012 21:55
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 45-50 Degrees
Duck Hunt 11-25-12
After my disaster hunt 11-23-12 I made an interesting decision. I should put my 25hp mercury (1999 short shaft electric start) from my decoy boat on the skiff. I have not done this so far because I just assumed it would be too big for the skiff, but the 18 hp was fine, perhaps the 25 would also be ok. I worked on this all day Friday. To do this I had to change the connectors on the new skiff’s gas tank from Johnson connectors to mercury, of course they are different. I did not finish until about 2:30 on Saturday. I also bought a new trolling motor from Wal-Mart, but have yet to get a new depth finder. I decided to take it to Augusta Ky. I got at ramp at about 4:15 pm. I was the only hunter at the ramp; with this weather that was no surprise. Of course the 25 started right up, no problem, even though it has not been started in 2 years. I took off across the river. River at pool, sunny and about 60 degrees, not great duck hunting conditions. I opened it up on the way across, and to my surprise the skiff planned off. This is not good; I have to show restraint and keep from doing this in high water, or I will be in trouble when I hit a big log. I eased back on the throttle and headed up the Ohio bank. I ran up 2 miles to just below the rock bank on the KY side and started across. I did not spot with the binoculars before crossing, and of course jumped up about 10 mallards. I started down the KY bank at a slow idle spotting with the binoculars. Nothing, I ran up to the ramp. At this point it is 4:45 pm; dusk is around 5:15. I decided to cross over to the Ohio bank, and again did not spot, and jumped up 5 mallards at the big culvert above the ferry. I started down slow and spotted 5 more about .5 miles down below me. I used the troller to get within about 200 yards, and they were playing in the shallow water, and showed no concern about me. I started paddling and they still paid no attention to me. About this time waves from the ferry hit me. The ferry was still a good .75 miles below me, but his waves still worked their way US. The ducks were perhaps 40 yards in front, the boat started bouncing, they took off. I called a day and headed in. The 25 ran great, I don’t know if I will keep it there, it really is too big but for now it works.

Posted By:
kclane
Web Member

From West Central AR 11-28-2012 05:49
– – –
Bridgeman – I always enjoy reading your posts. Now this post in particular is an eventful one, full of bad happenings. I do hope your luck improves. When it rains it pours. Hang in there!!

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River near Rome, Ohio 11-27-2012 21:17
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 35-40 Degrees
Duck Hunt 11-22-12
My family was celebrating Thanksgiving on Friday, so I decided to give duck hunting a try Thursday. Jim said he could not make it; he was going to Thanksgiving dinner with his daughter. My 1958 10 hp still has carburetor problems, and my mechanic can’t work on it because he has back problems. He says he can not pick the motor up or crank it to start. I offered to do the work under his instruction, but so far his back is so sore he can’t walk. I work on my own outboards, but have never been very good with carburetors. I called all the local boat dealers and they all said they will not work on old outboards. I found another old mechanic who said he would work on the motor only if I bring him the carburetor, he is too old to handle a whole outboard. These things only happen to me.

I have been searching on Craig’s List for 2 years now for a motor that does not exist; only the gods have this motor- a 15 hp Mercury 2 stroke short shaft, electric start. I have found one in Little Rock but it was sold before I could drive out to get it that weekend. I want a Mercury because I love the shifter on the tiller, a feature the Mercury has had since the 1950’s. I would settle for a Johnson 15 hp but they also do not exist. I can find long shafts or non-electric starts, but not the motor I want. I even sent emails to 60 boat dealers in Ohio, Kentucky and Michigan, and nothing. Due to my problems trying to find the 15. I started looking for an 18 hp Johnson with electric start. I looked all summer for one, but no luck until last month when I did find one for $225.00 in Cincinnati. It had a lot of problems but due to my desperate situation I bought it. It is a 1959 model; you would think I could have found a newer model. The tiller handle was broken off and the guy converted it to a single line fuel tank, but he never installed a connector, he just ran the hose from the tank to the fuel pump. He ran the boat with controls and a steering wheel so the tiller was not a problem to him. He did start it up for me in a garbage can and it ran great. I bought it and that day I took the motor to Delta Prop and they welded to tiller back in place. I then installed an OMC connector and ran all new fuel lines. I had to buy a new gas tank and new hoses for the 18, since the 1958 stilled used the old two line fuel system. I started the motor up in a garbage can and it ran great.
The next week end (11-11-12) I took it on the skiff to Foster Ky. for my test drive. It started right up and proceeded to not pump water. Now remember it pumped fine when I first bough it, and later when I installed the new fuel lines. I turned around and went home. Monday I ordered a new water pump. The next weekend I tore the motor apart and the water pump impeller looked brand new. Is the water passages in the head stopped up? I remembered that 1959 was the first year they installed thermostats in outboards. I pulled mine out, put the motor back together without it, started it in my garbage can, and water came out the exhaust port. I ordered a new thermostat Monday.
My parts did not come in the week of Thanksgiving but I decided to duck hunt Thursday. I did a lot of research, plus called my mechanic, and determined that one trip without a thermostat would be Ok.
I did not get an early start, and was surprised that the Dairy Yum Yum was closed. I got breakfast at the Frisch’s in Maysville. I was the only hunter at the Rome, Ohio ramp. The weather was fantastic, no wind at all, bright sunshine and a crystal clear river at pool stage. The 18 started right up and I decided to run upstream along the Ohio bank for at least two miles to make sure the motor runs. My depth finder decided to stop working. I played with it for 15 minutes, but it would not work. Hell it’s only 6 years old, Hummingbird apparently can’t make one that last longer than that. The motor did run good, but I did not scare up a duck. I crossed over and started down the KY bank at a slow idle spotting with binoculars. Just down from the ramp I spotted ducks ahead. When the river is flat like this I use a trolling motor to get within 200 yards, and the paddle the last bit to the ducks. The trolling motor is legal, but all motion from it must cease before you can shoot. You can’t use it to get closer than 200 yards any way because the ducks know that a log can’t go faster than the current, and get spooked long before you get within shotgun range. I looked ahead and a barge was coming up river. The waves would be a problem, so I decided to pull into the bank and wait for it to go by. As I was running the troller towards the bank it started smoking like crazy and stopped working. I unplugged it and paddled over to the bank and opened it up to see what was wrong. A wire at the switch had come unplugged and shorted out another wire. All the insulation was gone off of this wire, and it burned holes in every wire that it came in contact with all the way down to the motor, the troller was an anchor. Thank-you Minn-kota. I decided to go on downstream, thinking I would find the first ducks I had spotted, and I started down at a slow idle. I never did find them. I did spot 4 black ducks just above Brush Creek Island, just in time for another barge coming US. I pulled into the bank and waited. After the barge passed I started down at a slow paddle. I got to within 100 yards, and they got up and flew off. I decided to call it a day. I cranked up the 18 and crossed over and started up the Ohio bank. The 18 stopped, and would not start. I pulled the cover and saw that the glass gas strainer was empty. I pumped up the hose and it ran for about 4 minutes and then stopped. This is exactly what my 10was doing. I limped back to the ramp and pulled out the boat. On the way home my 1997 Chevy ran like sh_t. When I filled it up I saw that it was getting 5.8mpg, so it is also sick. Perhaps it was just not meant for me to be a duck hunter.
.

Posted By:
boatrower
Web Member

Central Kentucky 11-27-2012 15:43
Cloudy, Light Rain & Drizzle – 35-40 Degrees
We hunted cattle farm ponds over Thanksgiving weekend and had almost no birds. Four ducks made a feeble atempt to work the decoys and we did not see or hear a goose which is unusual. ANybody have any luck?

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Duck hunt Manchester, Ohio 02-04-2012 14:38
Sunny & Clear, High Winds – 35-40 Degrees
Duck Hunt 1-29-12
Saturday night I tried to talk Jim into taking my 1954 Lonestar Duck boat to decoy hunt, but Jim wanted to try to float hunt even though the wind was suppose to be worse than Saturday. We decided to take the skiff out for the last day of the duck season, I met him at his farm at 7:00 and Randy followed us to the Augusta General Store. We went east on Rt 8 along the river to observe river conditions on the way to Augusta. Foster had 1 truck, Snag creek had 2 trucks, and the normal red truck was parked above Snag Creek
We had a great breakfast. I drove past the Augusta ramp and we only saw 2 trucks. We continued east on Rt 8 and crossed over at the new Maysville Bridge. We pulled into Manchester and changed into our hunting gear at the park off of Pearl Street. The wind was fairly strong when we started up the Ohio bank after starting the 10 with a shot of ether. As we ran up we glassed the island and saw geese at the head of the small island. As we ran past them they got up and flew downstream. We ran up about 1 mile above the islands and crossed over. The KY bank was semi sheltered from the west wind. The river was still at 43’ so we had plenty of current. I started paddling. Jim spotted ducks ahead. It was 5 mallards at the waters edge. We floated down right beside them; they paid no attention to us. I told Jim to take them, he got 1 drake, and missed another drake. I had no shots; they flew right over Jim’s head. We picked up our drake and pulled into the bank for coffee and cookies. We started back down and got across from the big island and we spotted Geese on the sand bar. We decided to try to float them. I ran up to the head of the island and started floating down. The current shot us past the head of the island and down. The Geese got up while we were at least 200 yards from them. We continued down to the end of the big island, no ducks. I told Jim I hope our raccoon moved to higher ground, or he drowned.

We ran to the head of the island and continued our float down the KY bank. When we rounded the bend across from the ramp the wind was hitting us right in the face with 2’ whitecaps. I knew the KY bank below Brush Creek would protect us from the wind, so we started the 8 mile run US. I ran up the Ohio bank the entire way and jumped up 2 blacks and 4 mallards and 2 big groups of buffleheads. As I approached the island the south turn of the river reduced the wind to the KY bank. I crossed over at the head of the power plant below Brush Creek Island. The KY bank was fantastic, hardly no wind. We started paddling. We floated all of the way below the power plant and were across from Wrightsville when we both spotted ducks ahead, at least 3 mallards. I floated down and they swam out and downstream a bit and then went back in. I got right beside them and told Jim to take them. Just as I said that I saw 3 blacks just in front of my 3 mallards. They all got up, the mallards flew DS and the blacks flew US. I had to wait until my mallards cleared the tress, and when they did 1 drake was directly over my head, I swung past it and pulled the trigger and saw it explode in feathers, and I heard it hit the water behind me, but could not see it. It was my only shot. Jim missed his 2 shots at the blacks. We picked up my drake and pulled into the bank for lunch. We headed back down and saw nothing until we approached Manchester Island. I looked over and saw two mallards swimming along the waters edge which had 20 yards of flooded tress between us and them. They were already in range, but I wanted to get closer. All of a sudden they were gone; it looked like they swam under a big trees root ball. I told Jim to take them, thinking they would jump up. They did not, and we flew past the big tree with the fast current. I have no clue where they went. I think they were both cripples and swam under the roots to hide from us. At this point the wind was just too bad to float. The boat was bouncing up and down due to the whitecaps. We decided to call it a day. I ran along the KY bank at a slow pace because the spray from the white caps was giving us a bath if I went too fast. Of course we motored right up on 3 different groups of blacks that took off only 20 yards ahead of us. I told Jim to net the next one. We got to the ramp and we had a big problem. The wind had blown a giant brush pile on both ends of the ramp. There were large trees, logs of every size across both ramps, along with hundreds of plastic bottles. The Manchester Ramp has an entrance and an exit ramp, but due to the high water there were two ramps. Both were completely blocked. I tried to run into the least covered ramp and was stopped short by 1 giant tree. I dropped Jim off on the bank between the two ramps and told him to move the big log, and then I would have a chance motoring thru the mass of logs and junk. I backed back out because the waves were beating into the rip rap between the banks, no place for a wooden boat. Jim could not move it, hell he is over 80 what did I expect. I pulled in and had Jim hold the boat out the best he could. I pushed the log out with a paddle, only to have it float right back due to the wind. I finally got it back enough to walk the skiff past the log. We pulled out and were home by 6:30.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River Mile 363-6 miles below Portsmouth 02-04-2012 14:37
Cloudy, Light Rain & Drizzle – 35-40 Degrees
Duck Hunt 1-28-11
The wind was suppose to be really bad both Saturday and Sunday in terms if wind. It was to be 10-15 mph out of the West on Saturday and 10-20 mph on Sunday. Jim and I decided to go Saturday and then perhaps Sunday we would take my 1954 Lonestar decoy boat. River at 43.5 low Friday maybe 32 and it was raining lightly. I met Jim at his farm and we decided to go to Kinniconnick mile 368 Ohio River. We headed east on the double A highway. Had a great breatfast at the Bob Evans in Maysville. We needed gas for my 1997 Chev so we pulled into a gas station, I think it was west of Vanceburg. There sat a big decoy boat , it was War-eagle and his son. We chatted while I bought gas. Jim went to buy a cheap rain outfit in the store, he forgot his this morning. War-eagle said he was going to put in somewhere on the Scioto if he could find a ramp, if not just put in at Portsmouth and run up. I told him of our plans to hunt at the Kinn. Jim and I headed out on the Double A. We turned onto Rt. 8 at Vanceburg and got to the ramp at Kinn Creek. We could not put in, the road to the ramp was flooded and we would have had to go 100 yards in 1.5’ water to get enough water to launch the boat. Not a good idea. We decided to try Portsmouth. We got to Portsmouth and there were 8 trucks and trailers at the ramp, including War-Eagle who was putting in. We were certain that most of these boats went up the Scioto, but if not it, they could make life difficult for float hunters (boat ride to find ducks at 10:30am). We decided to put in at Manchester, so headed west on 52. I then though of the park at mile 363 Ohio River, we would put in there. We pulled into the park and there was a big barge just at the mouth of Nace run. When we got to the ramp a truck was parked and it was apparent it was a change shift for the barge, we saw their small boat running to and from the barge and the truck. The boat did not come from the truck, it had no trailer, so it must have been lowered from the barge.
There was no shelter to change into our waders and coveralls, so we drove the rig to the shelter next to the golf course. (it is still raining). After our change I drove back to the ramp. I had to slowly push the skiff off the trailer, because I could not back down far enough to float it off. We headed out of the creek and when we hit the river, the wind was horrible, I decided the Ky bank looked like it had better cover so I crossed over but when I got to the Ky side it was white-capping, much worse than the Ohio side. I went back to the Ohio side which was sheltered from the west wind, it was not that bad. We started paddling. We went down about a mile with out seeing a thing. I looked over to my left and there is a buoy floating down. When I looked at it thru the binocs, I saw that it was not a buoy, it looked like a overturned Kayak. I motored over to it to investigate, it was a Kayak, it was almost submerged, too much work to recover it. We motored back to the bank at Pond Run and proceeded to scare up about 10 mallards. Just below them were about 20 Geese who also took off. Jim spotted some ducks below them, but when I got up to them, they were at the waters edge, a good 40 yards back from the willow line, they got up and flew back away from us, no shots. The whole time we are floating DS we can hear the wind roaring in the trees above us, but so far the bank is sheltering us. We passed some beautiful houses on the bank above the river, some very expensive homes. We also passed 3 groups of cane that was flooded. I wondered if ducks would swim into it, it would be great cover. As we went DS we kept turning more and more west, and the wind got worse and worse, until it was white capping and the skiff is bouncing up and down, and I really could not keep the bow into the wind. I was funny, it should have been really mad about the situation, but god the river was beautiful, it was a wild living thing. When you looked at the Ky side thru the binocs it was amazing how high the waves were. My skiff can handle almost any water, but there was no way I would cross over this stretch. At the mouth of a small creek we jumped up about 20 geese and 4 ducks, they were just out of range. We decided to pull in for coffee and cookies. We debated throwing out decoys, but we were in Ohio and I have heard the agreement between Ky and Ohio is void. We pulled into the creek mouth to get out of the crazy wind. As we sat there with some trees blocking our path in the creek, we noticed the water was flowing fairly fast into the creek. I believe it was not a rising river; the river was suppose to fall, it was the wind blowing in the water. The rain had stopped so I got rid of my rain outfit, the sun started to come out. When we got ready to leave we had a hard time getting out. I had to turn the back of the skiff as I backed out, and I kept hitting shallow water as I backed. The high wind would not let me turn the back into the wind to get out. This is a common problem with the skiff, it does not back well with a high wind in your face. We finally got the skiff out using paddles to push her out as we ran in reverse, it was not easy. When I backed thru the tree line a wave went over the back of the skiff and I took on maybe 2 gallons of water. My skiff has high sides, but the back is cut down for a short shaft motor. In 12 years of hunting in my skiff, that is the first time water went over the back.
We then decided to run back up and refloat the Ohio band where we jumped up the ducks. I pulled the plug on the run up and drained the water out of the boat. When I got close to Pond run I ran out to the middle of the river, but not to the Ky side, it was just too rough on the far Ky bank. As we ran past we spotted Geese and a few ducks swimming into the bank thru our binocs. I ran up to below the ramp and started down paddling. We got to within 80 yards of the geese and they took off. I told Jim that I did not see the ducks take off. We went down maybe 100 yards and Jim spotted ducks below us. They were well back into the trees. I got right beside them and turned to boat into the bank, and told Jim to take them. I watched 2 ducks fly DS thru the trees, I had no shots. I saw Jim shoot at a few that flew US. Jim got two, a drake and a hen. We picked them up and headed US. My plan was to try to get to a bank that was turned slightly to protect us from the wind. It looked like the Ohio bank turned enough to be protected more from the west wind US of us. We started up the Ohio bank.
Above the ramp I crossed over to the Ky bank, and it was a mess, I fought whitecaps all the way up to within sight of the lower Portsmouth bridge. The problem was the high waves hid the floating drift which was really bad (43’ river). We crossed over and started down the Ohio bank. The wind was semi sheltered by the slight bend in the river. We paddled down stream past fantastic cover, weeds floating in the water, but no ducks. We both saw 5 mallards up ahead, but at this area the waters edge was 60 yards back from the tree line that we were floating past. I turned the skiff into the trees , but they got up and flew away from us no shots. We continued on down and the same thing happened again on 2 mallards, no shots. I looked over and next to me was a drake mallard decoy. I cranked up the 10 and we picked it up. It had a 2’ line on it. We decided to putt down slow and spot with binocs. We saw nothing. On the 1 mile stretch above Nace Run I paddled, but no ducks. It was 4:00 and we decided to call it a day. We pulled the boat out and drove west on 52 and crossed over at the old Maysville bridge. We had a great dinner at the Maysville Bob Evans. Home by 8:00.

Posted By:
Walt S
Web Member

01-30-2012 06:44
Mostly Sunny, No Precipitation – 30-34 Degrees – Open Water
New birds I guess. We had a nice finish. Mallards, teal, gadwall and woodies. Dogs did well … a good day.
Turn out the lights…… the party’s over…… til next year.
GOD Bless & GOD Speed.

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Kentucky Duck Hunting Report Archive

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River at Manchester, Ohio 01-24-2012 19:29
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 30-34 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 1-22-12
Jim and I decided that Sunday would be better because they were predicting freezing rain Friday nite. We did get freezing rain and we had about .25” of solid ice on everything, the ramps would have been impossible. I met Jim at his farm at 7:00 am and his son followed us to the General Store in Augusta Ky. I was planning to hunt there (Augusta) because the local duck hunters always salt the ramp. When we got to Augusta we saw that they had almost no freezing rain. Randy said he was at Maysville Saturday (Cattle auction) and there was no ice. After breakfast we decided to go to Kinniconnick mile 368 Ohio River, but then we changed our minds and went to Manchester mile 397. On the way out of Augusta, I checked the ramp; just two trucks, not a good sign. We drove up the double A and crossed over at the new bridge at Maysville. I drove past the Dairy Yum-Yum feeling guilty. There were 2 trucks at the Maysville Ramp. We pulled into the fancy park at the Manchester ramp and used the covered picnic tables to change into our waders and coveralls. We need to thank the city of Manchester for this great facility.

River at 37, east 5 mph wind cloudy and low of 24. 10 hp started after shot of ether. We headed up the Ohio bank, planning to float the KY side of the big island. As we ran up Jim and I both spotted 2 geese sitting just US of the down stream tip on the island, on the Ohio side. We then decided to float them. About 3/4 up the island I crossed over just in time to jump up 5 mallards. I turned and ran up to the US tip of the island. We started paddling down. Nothing until we got to the end and we both spotted the geese. I floated right up on them, and told Jim to take them. He got one and I got one. I had to shoot mine again on the water. We picked them up, a good way to start the day. We ran back up, this time to float the KY side of the island. On the way up my cell phone said 10 mph US. We started down the KY side of the island. The cell said a steady 2 mph as I floated DS. Jim spotted the entire way down. He said Geese ahead, a big group sitting on the pretty sand beach. While 200 yards out the all got up and flew DS. We got to the DS tip of the island, and nothing. We pulled into the sand bar at the tip of the island for a cup of coffee and cookies. I look up and there is a Raccoon all balled up right at the waters edge. I assumed he was dead. I got out of the boat to investigate, and walked up to within 15 feet, and he jumped up, and glared at me. We left him alone. We had our cookies and noticed he went back to sleep.

We pushed off and ran up the Ohio bank with plans to float the KY bank above the islands. I ran up to just above McClelland run and crossed over. As we were crossing, both Jim and I glassed the bank up and down so we would not screw up on some ducks. None spotted. We started paddling down the KY bank. Across from the island Jim spotted a bunch of about 10 ducks sitting on the sand at the waters edge. We got to within 50 yards, and they all got up and flew DS. Jim spotted more below these. It was a hen and a drake sitting on the waters edge. I paddled up and they did not move and had their heads down the entire float. There were a few trees in the water about 10 feet past the waters edge. I got right besides them and turned the bow of the boat into the bank, to give Jim a better shot. I said take them Jim. The drake flew out towards us and DS and Jim dropped it with 2 shoots, I remember saying to myself, god that duck is close. The hen flew back away and US. I had to wait for an opening in the tress, but dropped her with 1 shot. 2 dead ducks on the water. We picked them up and headed to the bank for coffee. We pushed off and 5 minutes Jim spotted more. We got right up on about 10 mallards. I got right besides them and was turning the bow when they got up. I yelled Jim take them. 2 shots from him and 2 shoots from me, and not a feather on the water. They were well within 25 yards.

We kept on going DS and Jim spotted Geese and ducks below us. We got to within 250 yards and the whole mess got up and flew DS. We kept on going down. We continued on down and Jim spotted ducks below. We got right up on them, I told Jim to take them, I fired two times and missed, and Jim dropped a drake. We picked up our duck. We continued on DS. We are now DS of the islands. Jim spotted some ducks below. I also found them thru the binocs; they were swimming along the bank, maybe 5 mallards. I got to within 100 yards and they started out. They swam out 25 yards or to our distance from the bank. I had to turn the bow to the right so they could not see me paddling, and pull the boat out a bit. They hung out 25 yards from the bank and swam DS with us in pursuit. They slowly headed into the bank. I got to within 40 yards, and they headed back out and again swam DS. The whole time I am doing this I am spotting ahead with my binocs because when I get the boat out so far, I may just give up on the ducks swimming out, if I spot ducks ahead that are on the bank. Jim is hunkered down and can not see a thing. The guy in the back can sight over the side of the boat without scaring the ducks. I spot 3 ducks ahead. They act like a magnet, and pull my 5 mallards to them. They all joined up at the waters edge. I got right besides them and told Jim to take them. I fired 3 times and nothing. Jim dropped a hen right at the waters edge, dead on the water. We marked its location while I cranked up the 10 to retrieve her. We got to where she was, and she was gone. I ran up the bank and then backed down, no duck. We got out on the bank, and rotted around the tree roots at the waters edge, nothing. We pulled into the bank where we last saw her and had our lunch. Many times they will jump out of the water if they attach themselves to a root if you wait a bit. In this case we never did find her.

We pushed off DS. Below the rock bank across from Manchester we spotted many ducks sitting on the bank. We got to within 40 yards, and all I could see was ducks stretched out below me, and they all got up, no shots. We kept on paddling DS. Jim spotted ducks below, and I saw that they were very white thru the binocs. They were buffel heads. We got right beside them and floated down together. They finally got scared and took off. Jim spotted 5 blacks below us. While we were .25 mile above them, they swam out to middle of the Ohio, and then took off. We kept on paddling DS and Jim spotted about 6 mallards way below us at the point. (We call the point the last bit of bank that you can see ahead thru binoculars). As I got closer they swam out. They then went back in. We played this gave for .5 mile of river, when they swam into 10 more below us. They got out on the bank just in front of me, while the other 10 were 20 yards further DS. I got right up on my 6 and told Jim to take them. 3 flew DS and I got 2 of them, 3 flew US and I assumed Jim got some of those. Jim didn’t see the 6 I floated up on and shot at the 10 ahead, who were at the range of his little 20 gage. We picked up my two; a hen and a drake. At this point we are across from Moyers, so we decided to head US and come back down the KY bank above the Island. On the run up the Ohio bank we jumped up maybe two groups of mallards. I ran up to the same location I started from this morning. We paddled down and Jim spotted ducks below. It was 6 wood ducks at the waters edge. We got to within 30 yards, and they took off, no shots fired. As we were passing Manchester Island we spotted maybe 25 geese on the big island. We decided to try to float them. I ran up to the head of the island and started down stream. We got to within 200 yards and they took off. At this time it was 5:15 so we decided to call it a day. We pulled the boat out and I took a picture of Jim with our Geese and ducks. 6 mallards and 2 Geese, not a bad day. We ate supper at the Maysville Ponderosa; I was home at 8:15. When I unpacked my stuff my cheap camera was gone. No clue where it went.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Duck Hunt 1-15-12 01-18-2012 20:28
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 30-34 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 1-15-12
I met Jim at his farm at 7:00. His son followed us in his truck so we could all eat at the General Store in Augusta, had a great breakfast. We saw 3 trucks at the Augusta ramp. We ran up route 8 and crossed over at the new Maysville Bridge. We saw 2 trucks at the Maysville ramp. We ran up to Manchester and were in the water at 9:15. The 10 hp did not want to start, but starting fluid did the job. Low at 16, river at 32, suppose to be 5 mph wind. We motored across and started paddling down. Jim spotted ducks below us. I got within 50 yards and 3 got up and flew down and landed about 200 yards down. We spotted 2 more. The river was perfect, no wind, I paddled down and was just about ready to tell Jim to take them, when the hen and drake got up. I yelled take them. Jim missed the drake but got the hen. The sun was in our eyes the whole time. I cranked up the motor and picked up the hen. We pulled into the bank, to let the ducks who swam out about .5 mile below us settle down. We had coffee and cookies.

I pushed off and we soon spotted more ducks below. We got to within 100 yards and they got up and flew. We kept going down, we spotted Geese below us, mixed with ducks. They all got up when we were 150 yards out. We kept on paddling. Jim spotted some more below. About 5 mallards were sitting on the waters edge. I got right up on them. I told Jim to take them. He shot two times and nothing. I was not able to shoot, they went right over Jim’s head. By now the wind is up a bit and the sun was in our eyes. We spotted Geese across from us sitting in front of a house with green grass grazing. We decided to try the Ohio bank. I ran up the Ky bank to almost Manchester and crossed over. We stared down the Ohio bank. The sun was better, but the wind was in our faces, but no too bad. We paddled down to the house with the geese. We looked down and could not see them. As we got closer we rounded a group of willows and there they were. I got to within 50 yards and they started walking up the bank towards the house. I joked to Jim that they were going to hide in the guys garage. We watched them walk away. We continued on down. A barge pushing a small dry-dock was running US, this is the first I have seen this far DS, they are all over above Ashland. We passed Moyers, it did not appear to be open. We came to the facility below Moyers and the wind got strong. We decided to run up above Manchester.

We stared US. We jumped nothing on the run up except for 2 groups of buffel heads. We came up to the big island and saw a bunch of geese at the DS end and up the bank on the Ohio side. We ran up the Ohio bank and crossed over to the ky side of the big island and started DS. The middle of the island was beautiful, a sand bank with weeds out in the water. I look up and there are 2 mallards playing in the weeds. I got right beside them and then turned the skiff so that the bow was pointed at them. I dropped the paddle, got my gun and waited for them to fly. We got within maybe 20 yards and they got up. Jim got the drake and I got the hen. We picked them up and headed into the bank. We could see duck and geese prints in the sand. We pushed off and continued down. As we approached the end of the island we heard geese below us. I rounded the end of the island, and turned the skiff to the right and turned US and the end of the island. There was no current due to the eddie currents at the end of the island. We jumped 20 geese that were behind some willows. They flew right over Jim, no more than 20 yards out. I watched as Jim picked out one and fired. He did not fire a second time. I saw his goose fall. I cranked up the 10 and saw two geese dead on the water. He got two with 1 shoot. We picked them up, they were super big. We decided to run up and come down the KY bank above the islands. We started up the Ohio bank. At island creek we saw 3 guys with 6 decoys out, in a blind up in the creek. We stopped and asked how they had done. They said they shot some fish ducks that morning. We headed US and ran almost to Wrightsville. We crossed over and started down the Ky bank. We spotted ducks below us. They swam out and proceeded to swim across the river. I cranked up the motor and we idled down using the binocs to spot. Jim spotted ducks below, I cut the motor and stared paddling. We got to within 100 yards and they took off. Across from the island the sun was so bad we could not see ahead. We crossed over and floated down the Ky side of the small island. No ducks. I cranked up the 10 hp and crossed back to the Ky bank. By now the sun was behind the Ky hill along the river. We scared up 5 blacks before we were ready to float. We headed down to across from the ramp and pulled out. Great supper at the Maysville Bob Evans. Home by 8:00

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River at Vanceburg Ky 01-10-2012 21:14
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 40-45 Degrees
Duck Hunt 1-8-12
I called Jim Friday nite and told him that Sunday would be better, wind out of the south east at 5mph verses 10mph Saturday. We decided that we would put in at Vanceburg Ky mile 378 Ohio river. I have only hunted that stretch of river maybe 3 times, so it was semi new to us. I met Jim Sunday morning at 7:00 am and we headed east on the AA highway. Had a great breakfast at the Maysville Bob Evans. We put in at the ramp at the park on Salt Lick Creek. The ramp at the river was open, but there was too much mud at the bottom of the ramp, left by last weeks high river. The 4×4 Chev would probably been ok on the ramp, but why risk it when the other ramp is just down the road. We put in at the park at the boat ramp on the Salt Lick Creek. The B motor did not want to start, until I sprayed starting fluid in the carb silencer.

We ran out to the Ohio and started down at a idle. River at 31′ so we have almost no river. Low Saturday nite maybe 32, lowest so far this season was 17. The River was beautiful, a sheet of glass. As we were motoring down looking thru the binocs two black ducks got up about 50 yards in front of us, Jim and I both missed them. There is nothing harder to spot than a black duck on a river bank. We continued on down. With the river this low spotting was fairly easy, so while Jim looked below us, I looked across the river to the Ohio bank. About 1 mile below Vanceburg I spotted a lone Goose across from us. I told Jim it was just to the left of the blue jug, but he could not find it. I told Jim I was sure it was there. Then we look below and here comes a boat up our bank, it is a fisherman. God I hate warm winters. I told Jim since our bank is shot, lets get the goose. We ran up the Ky bank to Salt Lick and crossed over and motored down to about 500 yards from where I thought he was ,I started paddling. I spotted him thru the binocs, but Jim still could not find him. At last he did. The Goose was sitting at the waters edge of a sand bank, and had his head down with no concern. I paddled right up on him and told Jim to take him. The goose looked startled and proceeded to walk up the bank, away from us. He would not fly, and this saved his life. I passed him, then started up the 10 hp put it in reverse and got the boat right at the waters edge. The Goose finally flew but we did not shoot. We continued down the Ohio bank at a slow idle. We look DS and here comes another fisherman. He anchors about 1 mile below us. We motor down to him and then crossed back to the Ky bank. We passed Quicks Run site of a old lost silver mine. As we were running down slow another fisherman runs up the Ky bank and anchors right next to the first guy. Across from the Rome ramp I decided to run back up and try our luck above Vanceburg. We hunted this stretch below Rome before, and I wanted to try newer territory.

I ran up the Ohio bank. Below Vancebrg we stopped to talk to one of the two catfishermen. They were anchored with a least 6 poles out the back of the boat. They said they had just each caught one small one. The other boat was US maybe 50 yards. The two boats were buddies, both had put in at Shawnee Park, up river. We continued motoring US at a slow rate spotting for ducks. Directly across from Vanceburg, I pulled into the bank for lunch. It was a pretty site, downtown Vanceburg, but we did not see a living soul in town the whole time we ate. I started back up the Ohio bank running slow. We so far had seen 2 blacks and our goose. About 1 mile above Vanceburg we spot a guy hunting on the bank with a dog. We always stop and chat with hunters so I cut the motor. I asked how was the hunting?, he said he was deer hunting, but we do not see the dog. I asked why?, he said because it is illegal to hunt deer with dog, but it was not his dog, but his wife’s, and if he shot , it would just fly home to mommy. The guy looked like Hemmingway, he had a pipe and a gray berd, kind of a cool guy. We wished him luck and headed US. Next a guy in a john boat comes up behind us and waves and goes up the Ohio bank, clearing the bank of any ducks ahead.(if there were any) At this point I decided to run up the Ky bank because it had less cover (a sand bank) and would be easier to spot. I crossed over and ran past Rock Run and Buena Vista and the rock steam boat landing. (back in the 1840’s there were large rock quarries here and across river and they loaded Buena Vista rock from this facility to steamboats bound for Cincinnati) The suspension bridge piers, the L&N bridge piers and many buildings in Cincinnati were constructed from Buena Vista Rock.

I decided that we had enough fun for today and crossed over to the Ohio side to run back the Ohio Bank. As we pulled into the bank to get ready, I spotted two wood ducks 100 yards above us. I got out the binocs and spotted 10 mallards about 300 yards above the wood ducks. I backed the skiff down and then I wanted to cross over to run up above the mallards, but a barge was heading up. He was catching us the whole trip up the KY bank. I did not want to cross in front of him, so I ran DS a bit and crossed over behind him. He had some giant rollers, so I had to run back more until these reduced. I started up the Ky bank. At this point I got my new phone out and hit my compass app that also showed your speed. Wide open we were doing 11 mph, slower than I thought. I eased back on the throttle, because I still did not want to cross in front of the barge. I got out the binocs and sure enough there are 4 blacks ahead. So I eased over next to the barge, and matched his speed. I got as close as I dared, not wanting to alarm the barge guy. The barge was holding close to the Ky bank, so I was sure the blacks would get up. Sure enough two took off but two swam back to the bank. I marked there location. We matched the barges speed for another .5 miles, then I cut behind him to cross over. Still had to wait for the rollers to die down. We started paddling down the Ohio bank. We spotted two more wood ducks and passed them hoping for the mallards below. I spotted them below us. They were dabbling right on the waters edge. The swam out a bit and then went back in. I was sure we had them. All of a sudden they got up and flew away while we were still 90 yards out. They flew down stream and landed below us. At this time I spot the two wood ducks we first saw. The male was sitting on a log maybe 10 feet out in the water. As I got closed I saw a female was sitting next to him. I passed right by them, they never knew what we were. I kept on paddling. We got to within 100 yards of the mallards and all looked good. They paid no attention to us. At 50 yards they all got up and took off again, this time they kept going. I cranked up the 10 hp and idled down. I was going to run US and try the blacks when a fisherman runs up the KY bank scaring our black ducks out. I kept on running down the Ohio bank. At Buena Vista I showed Jim the rock dock. At Rock Creek I told Jim that above this creek was suppose to be beautiful cliffs on either side of the creek.
At this point it is 3:30 and the sun is in our face making spotting a bear. We crossed over to the KY bank and the stretch above Vanceburg looked good but no ducks. At Vanceburg we quite and I got my phone out, 15 mph DS wide open. That means we had a 2 mph current and my real speed is 13 mph. We pulled into Salt Lick, and right at the ramp is the catfisherman we talked to earlier. He has his big motor out of the water with the hood off. He said he was heading back to Shawnee when his motor caught on fire. He said he put it out with the fire extinguisher. He said a boat ran past him, saw that he was on fire, and kept on running. (the guy who scared up our black ducks). He said he was going to walk up the hill and see if he could get cell phone reception, if not would we drive him to the Shawnee ramp?. I said of course we would. He walked up and Jim and I pulled the skiff out. The guy holding the boat at the ramp was the father of the guy who walked up the hill. He told us he thought they were dead when the big mercury caught on fire. The son came down and told us his wife was picking him up, but thanked us for offering him a ride. We pulled out and had a fantastic supper at the Maysville Ponderosa. 21 miles of river covered and not a shot fired, but it was beautiful, and the stories we can tell. Another good day on the river.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River below Foster Ky 12-31-2011 19:52
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 40-45 Degrees
Duck Hunt 12-31-11
Jim said he could not make it on Saturday, so it was just me. According to the weather man Saturday was to be the only good day to float hunt, high winds for the rest of the weekend. The alarm went off; I got up and went back to bed. I got up latter and after Debi fixed me a good breakfast I drove to Foster KY mile 438 Ohio River. I stopped at the California Market to buy a sandwich, I forgot my lunch. River at 41 and low last nite maybe 38. So far we have had no cold weather at all, and no snow. I was second at the ramp but I figured out who it was, it was a commercial fisherman who has a net above foster. I put the skiff in and the B -10 started on the 4th pull. I started US and spotted the fisherman ahead, he was running back to the ramp. I stopped to see how they had done, none but the river dropped, and according to the fisherman that is bad, a rising river is better. He had his young daughter with him and she was cute.
I crossed over to the Ohio bank and started paddling. The wind was suppose to be out of the southwest at 5-10 and it was. I had a hard time holding the skiff straight. I looked ahead and about 25 geese were swimming out. They are always at the house below Neville and are wise to all duck hunting. They got up while I was still 200 yards away. I saw that there was some ducks behind them that did not fly. I floated down hoping to catch them. I came around a willow out in the water, and they were behind it, they got up while I was maybe 35 yards from them, by the time I got my gun up, they were out of range. I continued down. I spotted an eagle nest in a big sycamore tree, cool.
At this time the wind stopped. I looked at the smoke coming from Zimmer, and it was straight up. Great drifting conditions. I got to the town of Moscow and decided to run up and try the Kentucky bank. I ran up the Ohio bank and saw nothing. I crossed over below Foster and decided to run up Holts Creek and eat my lunch. With the river up, it was easy to run up this creek. I went about 1 mile up and came to an old bridge across the creek that was just 5’ above the water. It was old, and the deck was gone. Cool bridge, I am Bridgeman because I am a bridge engineer. I thought of the Engineer who designed this bridge, and how proud he was of his structure. He of course is dead since the bridge appeared to be from the 1890’s. I ate my sandwich and ran out of the creek. I started paddling down. I paddled all the way to Black River and not a duck. I cranked up and ran past Black River, and jumped up about 20 geese who stay behind the Black River Barges all the time. They know where it is safe from duck hunters. I started paddling down. I came to the barge facility above Mentor, no ducks. I cranked up and ran past these barges, passing 5’ from barge after barge loaded with coal. I cut the motor and paddled. It was fantastic, high river, plenty of cover, no wind, but no ducks. Across from the old Frontier Restaurant it was 4 pm, time to run back. I was back at the ramp at 5:05 and home by 6:00. Not a shot fired. I floated most likely 25 miles of river today.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River near Rome,Ohio 12-27-2011 20:44
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 30-34 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 12-27-11
I wanted to go out the day before Christmas but my Daughter’s new car
(2001 Mustang Convertible,V6 not V8) would not start because the key would not turn. We finally got it started, took it to a mechanic who could not find any problems, but it killed my hunt. It did the same thing Christmas day, but if you played with the key it would finally turn and start the car. We will fix it after the holidays. My wife said I could Christmas day after our traditional breakfast at Waffle House, but there was a 25 mph wind Christmas, no way to float and not enough ducks to decoy. Jim and I decided to go Monday back to Rome, Ohio mile 384 Ohio River. I met him at his farm at 7 am. We headed east on the double A after a stop at the California Market for coffee and cookies. We crossed over the new Maysville Bridge and stopped at the Dairy Yum-Yum for a great breakfast. It was a light crowd.
We were at the Rome Ramp by 8:30. Low Christmas nite 27 degrees, river at 41 no wind. We put the skiff in and the B motor did not want to start. After about 20 cranks it started. I riched up the low speed jet, it was set to lean. We started up the Ohio bank, we wanted to run about 2 miles up to try some new territory. We jumped up two small groups of mallards on the trip up. I looked to my right and a decoy boat passed running up the middle of the river, we wondered if they put in below us or at Vanceburg. I crossed over and started down the Ky bank. We paddled until we were right across from Rome and we spotted ducks who were swimming out about 70 yards in front of us, they hit the edge of the willows and took off. We kept floating down and Jim spotted 3 blacks ahead, but when we got to within 70 yards they swam out and took off. Same educated ducks as 2 weeks ago. We continued on down , and Jim spotted a group of Geese, as soon as he spotted them they got up a good 200 yards in front. We were not sure they even saw us, they just may have decided to fly to a new area. We pulled into the bank for coffee and cookies.
River all this time is fantastic, and now we have a slight downstream wind, which never happens. (Wind always from the west on the Ohio River.) We were coming up on Brush Creek island when Jim spotted 3 blacks ahead out from the willows. As we got closer they swam out. We floated down together and then they went back in, we got closer and they went back out. Right then 2 mallards got up right next to us and slightly behind. We were so concerned about the blacks ahead we missed spotting the 2 mallards. I had no shot, I yelled to Jim to take them, He missed the hen but got the drake. The shot was behind Jim slightly, a tough shot. We picked up the drake and pulled into the bank for coffee. We headed on down. We were floating along and 2 blacks got up behind us, we did not see them until they got up, no shots. We got to Wrightsville and headed into a creek for coffee. At this point we decided to head back US and try the Ohio bank above the Ramp where we had jumped up ducks in the morning. I ran up the Ohio bank. Drift was not as bad as normal, but I still managed to hit two “somethings”. Normally if you hit a log, you see it behind you after you hit it. In both cases I saw nothing behind me. We always run up at the edge of the willows, to get away from the strong current, and the bank sheds off most of the drift. You can see underwater logs, by it’s tell tale riffle from the current. In this case I held about 25 yards out in order to spot ahead with binoculars as I ran up. I have no idea what I hit, but the second time the 10 hp came completely out of the water. It over revved, and I stopped it. It did not want to restart, but finally did. We jumped up two small groups of ducks on the run US. Just below the Ramp, I crossed over to the Ky bank and ran up about 1.5 miles above the ramp and crossed over to the Ohio bank, and started paddling DS.
Jim spotted some ducks below us, but they swam out and took off at a good 100 yards out. Jim spotted two more ducks below us. They were swimming along the bank, and did not seem to be concerned about us. We got within about 30 yards, and they got up but flew along the bank towards us. Jim dropped one black on the bank, and did not shot at the second, they got up before I was ready, I did not get a shot. If the ducks had flown away from us they would have gotten away. When Jim shot about 4 ducks got up below us. I ran into the bank to pick up Jim’s black, and we had a cup of coffee. We headed on down and Jim spotted 3 below us. They were out at the edge of the willows. As we got closer I saw that they all disappeared, they were divers. We got right on them but did not shoot. We went down another mile and decided to head for home, it was 4:00 pm. We pulled out and had a great dinner at the Maysville Ponderosa. It must have been senior discount day, because everyone there was old, at least in their 60’s. I was home by 8:00

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River below Aberdeen 12-18-2011 20:09
Cloudy, High Winds – 25-30 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 12-17-11
I called Friday nite and told him I would meet him at 7:00 at his farm, he did not even ask where we were going. Jim had a bad week, he learned that his older brother died last Wednesday. I got up at 6:15 and got everything ready. I could not find the cup to my soup thermos, finally gave up. I t took forever to get the skiff hooked up to my Chev pickup. I was 15 minutes late to Jim’s farm. We decided to go to the General Store in Augusta for breakfast, and Randy Jim’s son followed us in his truck just to eat breakfast with us. We had a great breakfast. On the way out we stopped at the Augusta ramp, 8 trucks.
I had decided to put in at the ramp ay Aberdeen, Ohio mile 409 Ohio River. The river was at 31’ and there was suppose to be only a 5 mph wind. The low was around 27. 10 started on 3rd pull. We started down running slow spotting with the binoculars. With a 31’ river it is very easy to spot, because most of the bank is a sand bar. The river dropped from 44’ to 31’ in 3 days. We ran down to the new bridge and then crossed over to the KY bank. Again we putted down spotting for ducks. Jim spent a lot of time looking across the river at the green grass bank above Three mile creek, where there were geese hanging out last year, but he spotted nothing. We worked our way down to the power plant above Charleston Bottom, did not see a duck. We ran past the power plant and down past Lawrence Creek. By now the wind was in our face at I would guess 10 mph. We pulled in a Lawrence creek for a coffee break and cookies.

We could continue down or head up above Aberdeen. I decided to head up. We ran all the way back the Ohio bank, and did not see a duck. At the Aberdeen ramp I crossed over and started up the Ky bank. I ran up at about .5 throttle both looking up the bank with our binoculars. We just about ran over 4 mallards below the Maysville ramp. I pulled the skiff over to the Ohio bank and ran up about 1 mile crossed back over at the Maysville ramp. We started down stream at a idle and spotted the mallards below. I cut the motor and started paddling. They swam out at about 100 yards, and floated down with us for about 500 yards and then headed back to the bank. I got right beside them and told Jim to take them. I grabbed my gun and looked over and the mallards would not fly. They just swam US away from us. They were local ducks and were most likely looking for us to feed them. We cranked up the 10 and I tried to jump them up with the skiff, but they just swam into the bank, and would not fly. We ran up the ky bank all the way to
Crooked Creek and crossed over to the Ohio bank just below Moyers. At this point the wind was very bad and the river was a mess. I just ran down the Ohio bank all the way to the ramp. Just above the old Maysville Bridge I jumped up 5 ducks. Back at the ramp at 2:00 and home by 3:30. Not a shoot fired. 27 miles of river covered and we saw 7 ducks.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River below Rome,Ohio 12-13-2011 20:39
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 10-20 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 12-11-11
I called Jim Friday nite and told him I couldn’t go Saturday 12-10-11 because I had to go car shopping for my youngest daughter, but I could go Sunday. Saturday nite I listened to my NOAA radio –river at 44 and 5 mph south wind, that is fantastic. I called Jim and we met at his farm at 7:15. We were going to put in at Rome,Ohio. I took my 57 Johnson which was just fixed last week. This motor looks like a brand new 1957 10 hp Johnson, that’s why I bought it. It is so pretty , I never painted it dead grass green, but put a camo cover over the hood. Last year at the end of the Ky. Duck Season it would stop running, and the only way we could keep it running was to pump up the tank. I would run for ten minutes and stop again. My mechanic fixed that but when I test drove it this summer it would not re-start after you ran it and let it sit for 1 hour. It went back for repairs and last week he said he had fixed this when I picked it up Wednesday nite, but I had not tested it. This hunt was the test run. We went the double A to the Maysville Bridge and then in to Aberdeen to the Dairy Yum-Yum where we had a great breakfast, all the regulars were there. On the trip east on 52 we could not see how many hunters had put in at Maysville, the river was fogged over.
We were at the Ramp at Rome by 9:15 am. The river was fantastic, high and flying down stream, and a sheet of glass due to the lack of wind. The 10 hp started on the 4th pull (18 degrees) so that was good. We started up the Ohio bank, me with my Model 12- 20 gage and Jim with his Lefever 20 gage. I was trying this gun out instead of my normal 1100 Remington 20 gage. I was going to run up to the old lock and dam but the drift was bad, so I crossed over just US from Rome. We were banging around getting ready, I looked up-river and ducks were swimming out and then DS and ducks were swimming out. I was going to motor over to the bank to let the ones below settle down, but they took off, looked like 5 mallards, the ones above did the same. Typical start for a float hunt. We started paddling down stream, it was great. I was having problems holding the skiff straight due to all the eddy currents due to the high water. We looked over and it was clear that the water was way back into a weed field beyond the willows. Jim and I were talking about how good it was when 10 mallards got up behind us, they did not see us due to the weeds, but I think our voices scared them up. We had no shots. We floated down another mile and another group of mallards got up behind us, we never did see them before this. Jim spotted 4 blacks swimming out below us. We got to within 100 yards, and they took off. That’s not good. We spotted 10 ducks just as we were about to pass them, they got up, but flew back behind us, Jim got off one shot but missed. I looked up and ducks and Geese took off 75 yards in front of us, unreal. Headed on downstream. We spotted two more blacks below us. I paddled down, they swam out to look us over, liked what they saw and went back into the edge of the willows. By the time the boat got there they were well back into the bank. I turned the bow of the boat towards them and told Jim to take them. They got up and Jim missed with his first shot and got a black with the second. I really had no shot. I went to crank up the 10 hp to pick up the duck, and the 10 would not start, 50 cranks later, with the gas line disconnected, it started. We picked up the black and pulled into the bank for coffee and a pee. At this point I realized that I left my new king size thermos in the truck.
We started back down. Above the island we would get within 100 yards of mallards and blacks, they would swim out and take off. Perhaps the sun beating on the sides of the skiff was spooking them, or perhaps they were just very educated ducks. This kept up with 5 different groups of 2-10 ducks until we were below the Island. At this point we decided to head back Us and we would try the Ohio bank. I went to start the 10 and it would not start, 50 pulls later, and a unplugged gas, line it did. Jim said next time when you cut the motor, unhook the line to see what happened. We started up the Ky bank and jumped 4 groups of from 2-10 on the way back up. At the ramp I got my coffee, and I un-hooked the gas line. We ate lunch at the ramp. I started the 10 on the first pull, interesting, when it is connected it is flooding. I pushed off. The Ohio bank was flatter than the Ohio bank, and it was clear that if we floated, we would just pass them up. I sat up and started rowing. In this way you can see the ducks, that you could not see laying in the bottom of the skiff. This works as long as you spot them first and try not to row after they are spotted. We were spotted by 2 separate groups of 3-5 who swam out and took off out of rang. Jim spotted 4 mallards ahead, I sat still and stopped rowing. The ducks swam out about 30 yards in front, and took off. Jim missed the first, but dropped a drake with the second. We picked it up and pulled into the bank. The 10 started right up on the first pull, after I re-connected it to the gas tank, that was the key. We rowed on down stream. About 1 mile above the island the Ohio bank got steeper, so we started paddling. We floated down to below the island and saw nothing. We decided to run back US and run maybe 2 mile above Rome and try the Ky bank. On the run up the Ohio bank, we jumped 1 mallard. I ran past the Rome ramp, and crossed over at the power plant. It was 4 pm and the sun was low over the Ky bank. We had a hard time spotting ducks. We passed up 2 groups of maybe 5 when we got across from the Rome ramp. We had enough. We had a great supper at the Bob Evans in Maysville, home by 7:30.

Posted By:
kclane
Web Member

West Cebtral AR 11-26-2011 22:56
Cloudy, Occassional Rain Showers – 50-60 Degrees
Good to see your report Bridgeman. I really enjoy reading them. Here in AR our season has been open one week. Tomorrow is the last day of the first split. I have the canoe and gear loaded. Heading down to the slough below the house in the morning. It rained most of the day, but is clearing out this evening, temps dropping and wind blowing. I am quite hopeful. Hunted last Sunday in same spot and saw several birds. Missed on a high flying honker and dropped one gadwall, but after chasing it and searching for 40 minutes, could not fing it. I have a new retriever this year, she is a Chessie and is still young, but learning. Have a good season and I hope to read more of your reports!

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River below Rome Mile 383 11-26-2011 22:16
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 40-45 Degrees

Duck Hunt 11-23-11

I decided to take the Skiff to Rome mile 383 Ohio River. All summer long I have been having my 1957 10 hp Johnson worked on, and it still is not working, so I took my B motor, my 1959 Johnson 10. Jim said he could not make it today or Friday. Today was the best, because the rest of the weekend called for high winds. I did not get an early start, left my house at 7:30. Was shocked to see the Dairy Yum Yum was closed for Thanksgiving, are you kidding me. The Daniel Boone in Alberdeen was also closed. I crossed the Maysville bridge and found the Bob Evans was closed , but Frischs was open. At Rome at 9:45. No one at Maysville ramp, whats up with that? River at 40’ wind south west 5-10, temp was 41, cloudy. I was surprised at the amount of drift, trees, and brush everywhere with crows sitting on them as they floated down. I looked down stream and it looked like a bean bag chair that was 10’ long. 10 hp started on the 5th pull, which is not good since I started it in a garbage can the nite before. I started down the Ohio bank. The water was way past the willow’s edge, so after about 5 minutes I decided to row. I rowed down maybe 5 minutes, and I noticed the wind was coming from my left, so the Ky bank would be better. I cranked up and ran up the Ohio bank, just below Rome and crossed over, trying to miss the big ones.

Just as I was getting ready, I jumped up a drake mallard, but was not ready to shoot. Started paddling down. I spotted 3 mallards on the bank, and got right up on them. 3 shoots and nothing, I was shocked, how could I have missed. Reloaded and started down. I spotted 3 blacks about 5 minutes later. Got right on them, 2 shots and I thought I hit one of the blacks but it kept on flying as far as I could see. I stared back down. About 5 minutes later I saw about 5 wood ducks. They got up and flew back towards the bank away from me, and I had no shoot. 5 Minutes later I got up on 4 wood ducks, and dropped the drake. I started the 10 to pick him up, and was surprised he was still alive and swimming well, but he did not dive under when I motored up to pick him up, I grabbed him in my long handle net. He was beautiful; I though about having him mounted.
I pulled into the bank for some coffee and my standard peanut and butter sandwich. Headed back down. Above Brush Creek Island I got up on two groups of mallards but could not shoot, they flew back towards the bank. It is hard shooting with the river so high. I also got up on three blacks, I saw 1 on the waters edge, but lost track of the other two. I passed up the one black, because he was well back at the waters edge, the other 2 broke out at the waters edge, 10 feet in front of my bow, I picked out 1 and fired 2 times, nothing. I really need shooting lessons. I passed the Brush Creek Island, and spotted 3 blacks, but they got up at 60 yards. I passed Concord expecting to see a duck at any second, but nothing. I reached Wrightsville and decided to head back. I ran up the Ohio bank until Brush Creek, but the drift was thick on the Ohio side. I crossed over to the Ky. Bank, and jumped up 1 group of mallards. I decided to re-float the Ky bank , so I crossed over to the Ohio bank and ran up above Rome about 2 miles and crossed over. I floated down the Ky bank to within 2 miles of Brush Creek, and saw nothing. I decided to call it a day. Home at 6:30.

Posted By:
kclane
Web Member

West-Central Arkansas Duckhunter 01-25-2011 12:15
– – –
Bridgeman, I really enjoy reading your posts. Keep them coming! Thank You!!

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Kentucky Duck Hunting Report Archive

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River around Manchester Ohio 01-17-2011 21:03
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 10-20 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 1-16-11
The wind was supposed to be out of the North West 5-10 MPH Saturday. With a 28’ river this is horrible. I got my Ohio River navigation charts out and saw that the river below Patroit, Indiana (mile 520) flows northwest so I planned on going there. I called Jim Saturday nite and he said no, lets go upstream from Cincinnati, not downstream. Our last trip downstream was not the best. I said OK we can go below Manchester mile 397 where the river flows south. I meet Jim at his farm at 7:30 and we ran up to Augusta with Jim’s son Randy who followed us in his truck so we all could have breakfast at the General Store. Good breakfast , pancakes eggs, bacon and toast.. We headed up route 8 and crossed over at the new Maysville Bridge. We saw only 1 truck at Maysville, we both said this is not good. We were at the ramp at 9:30 and we were 3rd. No one uses this ramp besides me. As I pulled the truck around to park at the downstream shelter we saw a decoy boat paddling downstream just above the ramp. Someone was having a bad day. Jim and I got into our waders and coveralls, and got the skiff ready. I walked over to the top of the bank just as they paddled by and asked what was the problem, they said their battery had died, they asked did I have jumper cables, yes I did.

We put the skiff in , they pulled in a little below the ramp. They got a jump battery out of their truck but the 90 hp would not start. I pulled my truck down on the beach and we jumped their boat. They had to start it , and then quickly get the motor in the water, since the battery was in the rear of the boat. 3 young duck hunters who were super nice. It is cool to see young duck hunters. They had a fantastic War Eagle with a portable blind, heaters stove etc. They said they had set up in Island Creek ,shoot a black and went to pick it up, dead battery. It was almost a 2 mile paddle. They were going to eat breakfast while their 90 ran charging the battery. They said their buddy was downstream. (other truck at top of ramp)

The 10 hp started on the 5th pull, but stopped two times because I was slow on getting the chock back out. I had put new plugs in it since it did not run too good last week. We headed DS. Jim spotted ducks below us, but they took off while we were 100 yards out. I started the 10 and putted down slow. About a mile below us we spot a commercial fisherman with his boat on the bank. The wind was not bad at all, so we decided to run up the Ohio and come down the ky bank above the islands. There are usually more ducks and geese around the 2 islands. As we ran by the ramp, the 3 guys pointed out in the river, and there was their dead black. I motored over and picked it up and dropped it off.

Jim and I headed up the Ohio bank spotting as we ran up. We passed Island Creek and saw the decoys from the guys at the ramp. It was a good looking spread. We spotted ducks just above Island Creek. I ran up the middle of the river so as not to disturb either bank. We ran up to almost Wrightsville and headed into the Ohio bank. We spotted ducks below us. We paddled down and they would have nothing to do with us. They swam out to the middle of the river while we were a good .25 mile below them. We kept going down and we were not able to get close to a duck. They would either swim out to the middle or they would swim down stream. When we got close they would look very nrevious and fly away while we were way out of range. We rounded the point of Island Creek and saw our decoy hunters below us. We decided to run up the Ohio and come down the Ky bank. We ran up to almost Wrightsville and started down the Ky bank. Of course when I crossed over, ducks took off below us, off of the Ky bank. We started putting down slow. We had the same problems as the Ohio bank. The ducks wanted nothing to do with us. We chased a group of 3 who went down stream and swam into another group of 3 who also swam down, some would swim across the river, some took off. When we passed Manchester Island we spotted two below us. I held the skiff out father out than normal, perhaps 40 yards. While about 30 yards away they started downstream. They headed back into the bank. When I passed them, I turned the skiff into the bank and we got within 20 yards. I told Jim to take them. He got the hen and I missed the drake with 3 shots, very poor shooting on my part. It was about 1:30 when we got our first duck. We pulled into the bank for lunch. As we were sitting I spotted more ducks below us, but way downstream. We started down putting slow. We never did see the ducks below us, they must have flown away before we got there. We passed the ramp at Manchester, and I just felt we were on the wrong bank. I told Jim we needed to go down the Ohio. We ran across to the ramp and started down.

We putted down slow to about where we had left off earlier that morning and saw nothing until we passed Isaacs creek. Below the creek we spotted ducks. We looked down the bank and there were ducks spread all along the bank, and some out from the bank, maybe 100 yards. They seem to be spread all over the bank. We started paddling and as we got close they would swim out and down stream. We chased them for a while. A hen and drake headed for the bank. The hen stayed on the bank, the drake headed back down. I passed the hen and had Jim almost on the drake when he took off. He was slightly out of range, but the hen was slightly behind us. I told Jim to take the hen, I still had the paddle in my hand. Jim got up and shot far to his right at the hen. He was sure he missed. I saw it fly as if not hit. I then heard splashing behind us, and there was the hen almost dead on the water. I cranked up the 10 and picked up the hen, she was dead. One heck of a shot.

We pulled into the bank for coffee. We were at Owl Hollow run. I walked down to the creek and was amazed by the amount of trash. We had basket balls, coolers, plastic coke containers, a gas grill tank, part of a old trailer, you name it. As we were sitting a decoy boat ran up the KY bank, but passed the ramp. Maybe he was checking on his friends. At this point the wind is gone and the river is super flat. It is rare for no wind on the Ohio River. The water is crystal clear because it is at pool stage, it is pretty. We have nice hard sand banks to walk on. You can see rocks and sand 5’ down, but I prefer a muddy high river.

We started down. Jim spotted more ducks below us and we got right up on 2 blacks and a few mallards. I told Jim to take them and we got 1 drake and another hen, we should have had more. 4 mallards at this point. We headed on down and Jim spotted ducks way below us. We passed Moyers (fancy restaurant on the river) and waved. We started down at a slow idle when I saw a hen mallard wing in my binoculars between us and the ducks. I cut the 10 and started paddling. It was a hen sleeping on a log about 10 feet from the waters edge. As I got closer I then saw 2 black were sleeping on the water below her. I kept the skiff in close to the bank. They did not move. I turned the front of the skiff in and I wanted to see how close I could get. When we were 15 yards out I told Jim to take them. I was going to drop the hen. The blacks took off and I saw Jim drop one. My hen would not fly, she was a cripple. Jim dropped the other Black. The hen did a poor job of being lookout for the blacks, she ran up the bank and hid. We now have 6. It is 4:45 so we called it a day. At this point the river is beautiful, flat as a sheet of glass, and no wind. Ran back up the Ky bank chasing Buckeye State (barge). We jumped up one black, the Ohio bank was the right choice. I think the reason the ducks are so spookey is they have been hunted hard the last few weeks and feel the only safe place is the middle of the Ohio. We pulled out and had a great supper at the Yum Yum. I was home by 8:00.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River below Aurora Ind. 01-11-2011 21:08
Sunny & Clear, Morning Fog – 10-20 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 1-9-11

With the wind suppose to be NW at 5mph, I decided to try below Aurora Indiana mile 497 Ohio river. The river flows south east there, so we should have a down stream breeze. Jim meet me at my house in Alexandria at 7:30. We had a great breakfast at the Bob Evans in Lawrenceburg. We were at the ramp by 9:30. The river had a lot of fog, due to clod temperatures, low last nite of 10, river at 28’. 10 started on the 10th pull, it did not want to start. We saw ducks above us in Hogan Creek, but ignored them. Pushed off and scared geese off of the ramp below the main ramp, but we were still in town. I putted down slow. We saw nothing for at least 5 minutes, and then Jim spotted ducks below. I cut the 10 and started paddling. They got up while we were at least 75 yards out. The sun was in our eyes, so we tried the Ohio bank. We putted down to across from Laughery creek and saw nothing. The sun was just as bad on the Ohio side. I crossed over to the good Indiana bank above Laughery Creek. At the barge mooring facility I putted past the barges. I spotted ducks below us but they were on the inside of the last barge piling. I could not get on the inside soon enough, so we passed by 2 mallards. We started putting down using the binoculars. As we passed Woolper creek, I spotted geese sitting on the bank at the mouth across from us. We would get them on way back up. We putted all the way to the camp site above Laughtery Island and nothing. As we passed Island Branch, I looked over and saw 5 geese take off in front of us. Jim and I had both missed them.
We decided to pull into the bank and have coffee.

At this point we ran back up the Ohio bank slow spotting as we ran up. We saw nothing. I got above Kirby Rocks and crossed over to the Indiana bank and ran up. As I passed Woolper Creek I saw the same Geese sitting on the bank. We ran up to the big rocks above Kirby Rocks and I motored across. We waited behind the rocks for Superamerica to run US. We looked up and there was a bald eagle sitting in a tree in front of us. Its mate flew by. I got a picture. We pushed off. I or Jim could not spot them ahead. We got almost beside Woolper Creek and I hit shallow water. Jim said he saw them up in the creek mouth. I backed up with the paddle and got us in deeper water. I started down. We clear the mouth and we saw about 15 mallards up in the creek. I turned the skiff into the creek and a few of the ducks got nervous, but the rest had their heads down. We got right beside them, I told Jim to take them. They few Back away from us and we both shot 3 times. We had 5 mallards on the ice, and one cripple in front of the ice. Jim shot the cripple and we picked it up with the net. The 5 on the ice were dead, but one was a good 30 yards into the ice, the other 4 within 10 yards. Jim grabbed his paddle and he started breaking ice. I slowly motored the skiff into the broken ice. Remember this is a wooden skiff that does not like ice. We picked up 4 put could not get to one, it was just too far back. We had 5 mallards. We headed into the bank for coffee. We never did find the geese.
We headed up river at a slow run. We got all of the way up to the ramp and we spotted 2 mallards across from the Aurora ramp ahead of us. I crossed over and started up the Indiana bank right past my truck at the ramp. I looked up a saw a boat coming down, way up river heading our way. I saw that it was a fisherman heading down the Indiana bank. We pulled into the bank to let him pass and let the bank settle down. They came up and started trolling right in front of us. We then ran up the Indiana about .5 mile above and crossed over. We paddled down and Jim spotted geese below us. I saw them. As we got closer they walked up the bank to get away. There was 4 of them. When we passed, they were 50 yards up the bank, too far to shoot. We headed down and never did find my two mallards.
We then decided to run up the Ky bank and float the Indiana bank below Tanners Creek, a good float bank. We headed up the Ohio bank all the way to across from Tanners Creek. We jumped nothing. We crossed over at Tanners and saw decoy hunters up Tanners Creek maybe 100 yards. We started down paddling since the hot water had a lot of fog. We cleared the fog and could see nothing ahead, so I started the 10 and putted down slow. Jim spotted ducks, and I saw then too. I cut the 10 and started down. There was 2 mallards and then 4 below them. I passed the 2 and put Jim right on the 4. I said take them and Jim dropped a drake, and missed the rest. I could not shoot, they went over his head. At this point we have 7 (really 6 in the boat) and it is 3:30, we called it a day. On the way home I called Debi and she met us at the cold springs Bob Evans for supper. Home by 6:00.

Posted By:
Wareagle23
Guest

Meldalh Pool 01-10-2011 14:55
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The 20 mile boat ride proved very successful late last week. It concluded that my hypothesis was incorrect and that we have gained birds. In fact, what we are currently seeing is what we term “our birds”. This is when the black duck to mallard ratio is around 10% and when we see entire flocks of just black ducks. To my surprise the birds came in way ahead of the cold front. I kicked up birds all along the ride. I made the run 2 days straight to confirm the best spots for the weekend and things worked out very well all weekend and today.

Since last Thursday the birds are know congregating together and are moving in large groups. This can be exciting, but it also means you have to be on the X spot. Otherwise, you are going to just watch a lot of birds fly over.

Today, I saw the first flight of Canvasbacks and a few goldeneyes and bluebills. Another indication the last of the last are coming down. Currently, we have Eagles, lots of Hawks and many arctic Turns.

Again, we do not have a large number of birds. I have witnessed many boats out and all getting some action based on the shots fired. We have spent as much time scouting as hunting and so far it has been paying off. We have been getting our black ducks very early and then having to watch and wait on the Mallards. Three of the last 4 days we have passed on many Black duck shots due to the limit. Still fun to work. However, you always have that one or two Black ducks that want to fly just out of range and land bringing the rest of the ducks to them.

Until next time.

Posted By:
Wareagle23
Guest

Meldalh Pool 01-06-2011 11:30
– – –
99.9% of our Waterfowl we hunt here are in .01% of the area. Understanding this statistical measure is the first acceptance of the fact that scouting and obtaining reconnaissance on the wherabouts and movements of any wildfowl is going to define the difference between success and failure. Don’t get me wrong, I would rather be lucky than good any day, but there are times you must create your own luck. To state the obvious, I have been scouting and not hunting because the activity is very, very selective.

At this point in the scouting game, we know which farmers combines had the screens improperly set thowing out excess corn. We know every blown down section of corn from this summers wind storm. We know which fields still have standing corn for insurance. We know of every corn field along the river over 40 miles and how much food is in the field. All this analysis is used to consolidate our efforts due to the large geography we cover and try to condense the fields we scout.

Our geese are gathered in large numbers and are moving from roost to frozen ponds and are content on picking grass. Watched over 500 last night from a cornfield 1/2 mile from a roost and they never flew. One lone goose came in undetected and landed 30 feet from our layout blinds. My son made the shot. He asked, “where did that goose come from”? I said an egg. At 11, he asks a lot of questions.

Tired of driving the land yacht and looking at educated geese, so today we are hooked to the river ark and are going to set out for a long boat run and see what we can find. I forgot to mention ducks, well they went back north or at least I am expecting my boat run to conclude that hypothesis.

Until we meet again…

Posted By:
Wareagle23
Guest

Meldahl Pool 12-31-2010 13:45
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 60-65 Degrees
Education is derived from acts or experiences that create a sense of information as to what is expected and or known. When you are the hunter you can create those acts which in return cause an inate sense of a bird to react in fear. In other words we have educated our birds. I have been hunting three groups of birds over a 35 mile stretch, rotating each in an effort to not fully educate yet with a few other groups of hunters finding the same concentrated birds, they all have PHD’s in hunter and decoy indentification.

Success has diminshed the last couple of days. Our duck activity is dropping dramatically with the warming temps. The geese are coming off the power plants in great numbers and are staying together. The number of birds in these groups are in the 500 plus range once they all gather in the field and are singing Kum By Ya together to the goose gods for their safety in numbers. The old military strategy of divide and conquer would be great, we just cannot divide to conquer the large groups. Where one goose goes they all go. In one case they are safe harboring on one corn field where no hunting is allowed. We were successful hunting close to this self created refuge for a few days. We are know part of the Audubon bird watching community. We waived the white flag, listened to the fat lady sing and have let them be until the weather changes.

This is the point when our hunting inspiration has led us too desperation so we must maintain our dedication.

P.S. If you are thinking about going out, wait, keep in good graces with the old lady and we will call you when the hunting is good. Keep the phone close, just turn off the ringer.

“I take no prisoners”

[Edited By Wareagle23 on 2010-12-31 18:40]

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River Mile 420 12-30-2010 21:57
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 45-50 Degrees
Duck Hunt 12-30-10
Jim said there was no way he was going in the rain, so I went by myself, even took off work. I got up at 6:30 saw that it was raining. I listened to Noaa and he said it was going to stop raining later in the morning, so I went back to bed. I got up later and Debi and I went to Bob Evans for breakfast. I went ahead and got the skiff ready to go to Dover, Ky mile 420 Ohio River. I stopped for coffee and cookies at the California Market. Was at Dover by 1:00. As I was putting in the rain stopped and it got sunny. River is at 27’ but I did have a down stream slight wind, river was clear and flat. Putted down stream and did not see 2 sets of hen and drake mallards. Was looking for them though the binoculars but just missed them. They were sitting on the bank, and did not move until I was 50 yards out, and then they took off. As I was motoring down a decoy hunter ran up the Ohio bank. I finally spotted ducks ahead at Indian creek. They were two blacks. I cut the motor and started paddling down. Then I lost them. I finally saw them, they had swam up the creek. I turned the skiff to follow and it stopped. 1’ of water. I eased up and they took off, 2 shots and I did not touch them.

At this point I ran up a little and then crossed over just US from Straight creek. Putted down spotting with the binoculars. Nothing. I went all the way down to Red Oak creek and saw nothing. I then crossed over to the Ky bank and screwed up on about 3 mallards. Started down the Ky bank and saw nothing. Just before Bracken Creek I said the heck with this and ran back upstream to the Dover Ramp. Across from Dover I slowed down and looked for ducks ahead with the binoculars. I spotted a few ahead. I crossed over and ran up the Ky bank and ran up about 1 mile and crossed over. I started down the Ohio bank. I spotted my ducks below and got right on them, 3 mallards. I eased up and fired two times and nothing. Started putting down and spotted more mallards below. Paddled down and the swam out and then DS a bit. I followed. They went into the bank. I paddled down and got right on them. Eased up and dropped the drake on the bank, but missed the hen. It is not 4:55. I decided to run up the Ohio bank and then float down the Ky. On the run up to Ripley I jumped up two sets of maybe 5 mallards. Crossed over and putted down the Ky bank. It was after 5:00 so I called it a day and motored back to Dover and was home at 6:30. The ducks that should have been there are gone because of the warm weather.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River at Manchester,Ohio 12-27-2010 09:11
Cloudy, Snow Flurries – 25-30 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 12-26-10

I called Jim last nite and told him to meet me at 7:30 at his farm. I picked him up and his son followed us to the General Store at Augusta. We had a great breakfast and then went on to Manchester. There were 5 trucks at the Maysville Ramp. We pulled into the upper shelter and changed into our waders. I got a new set of waders from Santa, along with a new jacket. I backed in the boat and dropped off the skiff. 10 hp started on the 4th pull. I parked the truck and walked down to the skiff. We pushed off and ran up the Ohio Bank. The river is at 28’ and we had a north wind. The run up the Ohio bank produced maybe 10 groups of 3-5 mallards and blacks. We jumped up a bunch of geese at Donaldson Creek. I spotted them though the binoculars and was just about to cross over when they took off. They were at least .5 miles above us when they flew. We decided to cross over at Wrightsville. We started down to Ky bank. I heard ducks across from us, and they sounded good, just too loud, then boom boom boom , must have been decoyers. We putted down and saw nothing at all. Jim told me he saw a bob cat on the waters edge, but I did not see it. By the time we were back downstream to Manchester Island the wind was strong on the Ky bank, blowing from the Ohio Bank.

We decided to run up the Ky bank and this time float the Ohio bank. I ran up the Ky bank until we again were at Wrightsville. We watched a decoyer pull out at Wrightsville. We pulled into the bank at ate cookies and had coffee to let the bank settle down a bit. We started down putting slow. We spotted ducks below Donaldson creek. At this point it is snowing pretty hard. As I got closer about 5 blacks swam out and headed down, we followed. They would swim in and then head back out. They swam up to 3 mallards who joined the blacks in the downstream swim. Finally they headed to the bank and we got within range. I passed 2 blacks and turned the boat into the bank, in front of a drake and hen and 3 blacks. They got up and Jim dropped the drake and missed his next two shots. He is shooting the 16 gage model 12 with #4 steel. I really never had a good shot. We had to shoot the drake on the water. We picked it up with the net. It was a long float. We headed into the bank and walked around to warm up. Nice hard sand bottom, the only good thing about low water. We drank coffee and then headed on down. We spotted 4 more below us and I putted down until about .5 mile away and started floating. They swam out when we were about 100 yards out, and swam down with us. They swam back in. We got right up on them and I told Jim to take them, 3 shots no ducks. They were about 5 mallards.

We headed on down, and spotted more ducks ahead. We got right up on them, I told Jim to take them, he dropped two, a hen and drake, I missed two shots at a drake. We had to shoot the hen on the water. The drake was dead on the bank. I pulled the boat in and walked over to pick up the drake. A decoy hunter ran past us and pulled into the bank below us. We pulled into the bank to warm up and drink more coffee. Headed on down. When I looked behind me the decoy hunters were still on the bank, I assume they were setting out decoys. We came to the islands and putted down the Ohio bank. Just below the Manchester Ramp we spotted 10 mallards, we just putted down and jumped them up, it was within the city limits. Putted down, and I spotted ducks way below us, I told Jim they were between the two blue barrels at the water’s edge. We got down to the barrels and our ducks were gone, we never did see them. We spotted ducks below us and I started paddling. They kept swimming out was we got close. It was 2 mallards and 5 blacks. They finally swam into the bank, and we got right up on them. Two shots and 2 blacks. Both dead on the water. At this point it is 3:30 , so we headed back to the ramp, home by 6:30.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River Mile 409 Aberdeen,Ohio 12-19-10 12-24-2010 11:49
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 25-30 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 12-19-10 Ohio River

Today I finally got my partner to go with me. He is 76 and did not go last year at all. We limited out on ducks for the first time since we hunted the last day of the 2009 season. His daughter had cancer, and he just did not feel like going last year. (She is now ok but did have a battle) This summer his other daughter’s husband died of cancer at 41. I called him last nite and he said he was ready to go. We decided to put in at the new ramp at Aberdeen, Ohio mile 409, home of the Dairy Yum Yum, because below Aberdeen the river goes North West so we were semi protected from today’s 5 mph west wind. I met him at his farm in Campbell Co. near Mentor at 7:45. We got coffee and gas at the California Market, and I bought some Christmas cookies. We headed south on the double A and crossed over at the new cable stay bridge. We spotted ducks from the bridge. We had a great breakfast at the Yum Yum. We both had 1 egg, bacon and 1 pancake. Wane, Doug and the usual crowd were there.

Pulled the truck out and put in at the ramp. River at 28 and we had a slight down stream breeze, fantastic. River was a sheet of glass. Scared away ducks at the ramp. We were only ones at the snow covered ramp, no one had put in since the snow. 10 started on the 3rd pull, and Jim and I putted down, he and I both spotting with the binoculars the Ohio bank below us. We passed two groups of 3 ducks; they were in the city limits. Jim spotted ducks below us. I looked though the binoculars and saw two sitting on a log, 5’ out from the waters edge. Paddled down and then spotted 1 more on the bank. They never moved. I told Jim to take them, they flew right over Jim’s head, so I could not shoot, he dropped 2, a hen and drake mallard with his 16 gage model 12. We had to shoot the drake on the water. The hen, who we thought was dead decided to swim under a log while we chased the drake. I gave Jim the long handled net but it was too far under some roots. He climbed out and got the hen, and wrung her neck. Headed on down. We floated all way down to new bridge and saw nothing.

We then got ready to cross over. As I was running across I spotted ducks across from us, so I turned and headed up the Ohio bank and then crossed over. We started down the KY bank, and completely missed about 10 mallards that were behind a big tree that had fallen in the river; I was banging around getting ready with the paddle and my gun when they took off just ahead of us. Jim and I both spotted ducks ahead at the barge house just up from the bridge. We paddled down. They swam out as I approached and then headed back into the bank. We got right up on them. As I was getting ready to tell Jim to take them they decided to swim out one more time, which only put them closer. I told Jim to take them. The flew straight up and slightly behind us. I had one shot, over my head and got a drake, Jim also got one. Both were dead on the water. We picked up our ducks and headed down. About .5 mile down, Jim spotted 2 below us. I paddled down and they stayed on the bank. As we got closer I saw a total of about 10 on the bank. We got right up on them; they were spread out all over the bank. I passed 2 so turned the bow in to give Jim a good shot. I said take them, and again they flew straight up and we both got one, a hen and a drake. We had to shoot the drake on the water. We pulled into the bank and had coffee and tea, and the cookies were great. The ducks were right above the Maysville Sewer Plant.

Headed on down. We heard Geese across the river and spotted them on the Ohio bank above the Marathon Gas station below the new bridge, the bank was full of geese. We saw them though the binoculars from across the river. There were geese on the waters edge and up on the bank. We said we would get them later and we continued to float the KY bank above the power plant, above Charleston Bottoms. Good cover from all of the dead trees in the water. We expected to see a duck at any second. Nothing until we were right above the barges at the power plant when we spotted ducks. There were ducks and a bunch of cormorants mixed in. We paddle right up on them; in fact I passed up a few mallards to put us right in the middle. The wind was in our face slightly, which was not good. I turned the boat into the bank, but did not see 4 swimming out who then saw us and took off. It was too late for the ones on the bank, I said take them and I think I got one and Jim got 1. We picked up the two drakes and that was our limit, time to head in. We headed up and crossed over to the Ohio bank. We decided to run up into three mile creek to eat lunch. The entire trip up a drake kept trying to jump out of the boat. We pulled into the creek at ate our lunches. I was surprised that about 100 yards of the creek was still open. At this point the drake jumped out, but we were able to net it and wring its neck.

We then headed up the Ohio bank, and we were going to call it a day, it was 1:30 and we had our limit of mallards. I saw the geese ahead on the Ohio bank, so I crossed over to the KY bank and headed up. I crossed over right below the cable stay bridge. We started floating down. There were a bunch on the waters edge, and a second group below them just up the bank. At about 200 yards the group on the bank took off, they were very educated. The second group stayed put, these must have just migrated in, and did not know the ropes. Since they were up on the bank about 5’ above us, I did not look over the side of the boat as I normally do. I marked them at a sycamore tree just below us. I kept my head down and paddled, not realizing that the wind was pushing us into the bank. When we were 50 yards from the tree, the boat stopped, the 10 hp hit the bottom, the boat turned and the geese saw us and took off. It was then that I saw, I was 10 yards off the bank in 1 foot of water. It happens, another 10 yards and we could have limited out on Geese. We called it a day and motored up to the ramp. I bought boat gas at the gas station below the bridge after we pulled out, so we could see if the geese were back, there was about 8 all the way up above the top of the bank. The lady at the store said that boats had been chasing them the last few days. I was home by 4:15. What a great day on the big Ohio.

Posted By:
Wareagle23
Guest

12-19-2010 19:52
– – –
I must thank my lucky stars, the last 14 days have been unbeleivable. From the rice fields of Arkansas, to the mighty Ohio river, to the cornfields of northeastern Ky, all I can say is unbelievable. I have been blessed to have seen, experienced and shared in great hunts.

I must admit one can get desensitized, not realizing how fortunate to have such great hunts. However, there is always a better set, a closer goose and that one duck that responds too a highball from the stratosphere to keep the senses on high alert. The last two weeks have been nothing short of spectacular. We shot 5 man limits for 5 days in Arkansas and two of us shot a limit on one day. Hunted rice fields, buck brush and big water for divers.

I returned to Ky last Tuesday and hit the river wednesday morning. Everyday I have seen the bird numbers build shooting good numbers for one man. I found great bird numbers in one of our corn fields on friday and we hunted it the last two days. On Saturday and Sunday we shot 5 man limits of canadas, mallards and blacks. To boot, we shot two ross geese!! Unbelievable. Unfortunately, it does not get any better than this. Get out and go.

I forget to mention, we were way overdue on bands. Got a banded Mallard drake on Saturday. Banded on 9/07 in Connecticut. Harvested another mallard susie today. Friend won the draw and we are awaiting the results. It’s all about the numbers.

As we get older the children of our hunting party are going with us. My 11 year old son has spent the last two days afield and has got to see some of the best wing shooting available in the waterfowl world. I am fearing we may have peaked for the season, very early. These last few days are going to be hard to beat. Non the less, we will keep going.

“I take no prisoners”

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River at Manchester ,Ohio 12-17-2010 22:47
Cloudy, Snow Flurries – 25-30 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 12-17-10
I took off work today to float hunt the Ohio River. I decided to put in at Manchester, Ohio. I had a very exciting drive in on the AA highway. I of course stopped at the Mentor Marathon and got Coffee. On the drive on the AA it was misting, and I thought this may turn to ice. I slowed down to 50 and suddenly my truck is fish tailing all over. I let off the gas and finally goy the truck under control. Ahead of me a car was in the ditch. I was about to turn around to help when another 4×4 turned to help the guy. It was solid ice for about .25 miles and then no problem. I warned the 18 wheelers to back down on my CB, yes I am the only red neck left with a CB. Crossed over the new cable stay bridge below Maysville. Had a great breakfast at the Dairy Yum Yum. On the trip east on 52 I looked over and nobody had put in at Maysville.

I was at the ramp at 9:00 am. I changed into my waders and coveralls ( will never forget again) at the park below the ramp using a picnic table. I had to remove a small tree from the ramp and kick the drift at the old waters edge to look for the one piece of wood with a nail in it. No one had put in since the latest snow. The ramp had 6” of snow on it. Dropped off the skiff and started the 10 before I pulled the truck up. Started on the 4th pull. I slid a lot going up but really had no trouble. I have super aggressive wrangler tires on all 4. The west wind was already pretty bad. I motored across and putted down the Ky bank. River at 29 so not much river or cover. I spotted Geese below me and paddled down. They did not like me at all and got up while I was still 100 yards out. I started up the 10 and slowly idle down using the binoculars. It was snowing lightly. I spotted 3 blacks. I cut the 10 and paddled down. They swam out to look me over, and then paddled down stream, me following them. They slowly headed into the bank. I got right up on them jumped up and missed 3 shots. I continued down, I spotted ahead and saw nothing so I crossed over to the Ohio side above Moyers. I was having a hard time floating because the wind was picking up. I floated down to the barges above the power plant, nothing. I crossed over and started running up the Ky bank. As I was crossing over I spotted ahead and saw about 10 ducks in cabin creek. I crossed back to the Ohio side and ran up about .5 miles and crossed over.

I started paddling. I got right up on 3 blacks who tried to sneak up the creek. I jumped up and got 1 black but missed the second. I picked up my black and drank a cup of coffee. I started running up the Ky bank. As I approached Manchester the river was super rough due to the west wind. I decided to run all the way up above brush creek where the river runs north west so the ky bank is sheltered. On the run up the Ohio bank I jumped up a ton of ducks and geese above Manchester Island. Way more than I saw below Manchester. I crossed over at the DS end of brush creek island but spotted ducks on the Ky bank as I tried to cross over. I turned around and ran back up above the island and crossed over. Just as I got to the Ky bank, mallards swam out below me about .25 mile below. I pulled into the bank to let things quiet down. Pushed off and started down. The Ohio bank on the run up was a mess with waves, but the Ky bank was perfect. I got right on 3 mallards. Got the drake but missed the other drake, and did not shoot at the hen. Picked up my duck. I started on down running the 10 slow. I saw a bunch of fish ducks, but passed then up. I then spotted a hen and drake wood duck. I floated down and they swam out and went DS, I followed. They swam back in and got up on the bank. I got right up on them, but could not get a shot off, they flew behind me. Continued on down and saw ducks ahead at Concord. I got to within 50 yards and they just took off, it was a mix of blacks and mallards. By this time I was out of the shelter of the north west turn and the river headed west right into the wind. I had enough and ran back to the ramp. I saw a ton of geese on the Ky side of the ky Manchester island, most likely 500 birds. Pulled boat out and had a great supper at the Yum Yum, home my 8:00 pm.

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Kentucky Duck Hunting Report Archive

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River above Augusta 12-09-2010 20:43
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 25-30 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 12-9-10
I left work at 11:30 to go float the Ohio River. What was interesting was when I crossed the Big Mac bridge that morning there was skim ice on the Ohio. I decided then that I would work .5 day and then hit the Ohio. I got the skiff and drove to Augusta. I was at ramp by 1:30. River is at 29 , it was a low of 9 last nite and most important, no wind. I was the only truck at the Augusta ramp. I got ready and realized I left my coveralls at home. I had left them laying down stairs, and forgot to go back and get them. This was a first. I toyed with the idea of calling Debi and having her drop them off (perhaps a 30 mile drive) but decided the hell she would raise was not worth it.

I started the 10 hp on the 4th pull and crossed over and up the Ohio bank. The river is flat and calm. As I ran up, I draped in a piece of canvas to keep the wind off, but I had to drop it down every now and ten to spot with the binoculars. I jumped nothing until about 1 mile below straight creek, and then spotted Geese ahead. I ran up at a slower pace in the middle of the Ohio, because I did not want to disturb either bank. Above the decoy area of Augusta , I ran up the Ky bank along the steep rock bank along the railroad tracks. Up above straight creek I spotted mallards ahead , so I crossed over to the Ohio side and ran up .5 mile and crossed over and started floating down the ky bank.

There was more current than I expected. I spotted mallards diving in the shallow water ahead of me and paddled down to about 60 yards from them, and they noticed me and started swimming down stream at a slow pace. I thought I was going to get up on them, but no, they jumped up and flew away. I pulled into the bank and had some coffee to warm up a little. Started back down. I paddled down to the rock bank across from Straight Creek, so I ran up a little above straight and crossed over. I started down the Ohio bank and about 50 Cormorants flew past and landed about .5 mile below me. That is the most I have seen at one time. The Ohio bank below Straight was alive with great blue herons, they were everywhere. What is interesting, you can never float on a crow or a blue heron, they always get up before you past them. I am paddling down and blue herons on jumping up left and right. And the ones I have already jumped fly right over me and land in front, only to be jumped again. I spotted ducks delow. I got within 45 yards of a hen and a drake that was dabbling, when they started swimming down stream. I pulled the bow out a little and keep on going down stream. They swam back into the bank, I was sure I had them. I got to within 20 yards and they started back out. At this point it did not matter, I eased up, they took off, I dropped the drake a missed two times on the hen. When I shot , many more ducks got up below me, including the Cormorats. I had to reload to shoot the drake one more time on the water. Picked him up and headed on down. To cover more ground, I started the 10 and putted down using the binoculars. As I was idling down I could smell my exhaust fumes, that is good , I had a slight downstream wind. About a mile down I spotted more ducks below me. At this point I see a barge coming up the Ohio. I said to my self, I guarantee right when I get close to the ducks the barge wake will get me. Sure enough it did. Ducks started jumping up in front of me. I suspect 25 got up in groups of 2 to 5. At last the river settled down and I spotted a drake and a hen below me. I got right up on them, dropped the drake and missed the hen. Picked up my drake and headed into the bank for a pee and more coffee.
I started back down and ran to the end of the good Ohio bank at red oak creek, so I crossed over to the Ky. Side. At this point it is 4:45 and the sun is low, very pretty. I spotted a bunch of ducks below me, just up from the ramp. I floated right down on a drake and a hen who decided to swim upstream towards me. I got right up on them and guess what, got the drake but missed the hen. Cranked it up and ran to ramp and pulled out. Good day, 3 drake mallards.

Posted By:
Wareagle23
Guest

Meldahl Pool 12-06-2010 15:21
Cloudy, Snow Flurries – 10-20 Degrees – Open Water
I found myself driving a familar path this morning, seeming like it was only yesterday, when I realized another hot summer had passed and duck season is back. Yes, I had made it to the other side, the better side, the cooler side for another season. When I was younger it seemed to take forever for the season to get into full gear. They say life is like a roll of toilet paper, the closer you get to the end the faster it goes. This year seems to have gone way to fast. No complaints as it was good to smell and hear the blast of the big 10 bore this morning. It just feels good.

Slipped over banks the of the mighty Ohio this morning, only to be almost ran over by a 160 class buck hiding in a honeysickle thicket, and went to set the decoys and realized I had a neighbor. 150 yards upstream was another decoy set so I joined them. How small the world is, it was the brother-in-law of a gentleman whom I associated with on Canada hunts for several years and had passed. They were from Cincinnati and were hunting the area their relative used to hunt in remembrance of him. We reflected on him and the past as we awaited the ducks. I was content having new partners for the day, of which each was trying to tell bigger lies, and enjoy the morning. You know, all duck hunters are liers and we swapped embellished stories.

When I left for work there were four mallards and one wood duck in the bag. Not a lot of activity, few sandhills flying south and several groups of mallards resting in the middle of the river, indications of resting birds before moving on south.

I will be heading to Arkansas for six days of hunting. With this weather, I hate to leave. However, I am chasing the one duck I missed in Canada this year, and I think he is in Arkansas. At least I told my wife this story and she said if it will make you feel better, then go!!

Duck hunting weaves a majical web of stories of people, dogs and hunts. Each year that passes we connect to new webs and lose a few strands. A middle aged gentleman who helped me find my dog Jethro passed this year.

Today was a good day.

“I take no prisoners”

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River above Manchester Ohio 11-27-2010 20:58
Cloudy, High Winds – 35-40 Degrees
For the first hunt of the 2010 season I decided to take the Skiff to Manchester on the Ohio River. River at 28 which sucks and supposedly a 5-10 west wind which also is not good. As I drove past Maysville I saw one truck, which says it all. Saw the normal crowd at the Dairy Yum Yum. Put boat in at the Manchester Ramp, and 9:30. 1957 10 Hp started on the 5th pull.( It last started in February) At this point the 5-10 mph west wind is more like a typhoon. I decided to run up to take advantage of the area around Wrightsville where the river runs skew to the west wind. I ran up and spotted with the binoculars. I saw a bald eagle on Manchester Island.
On the run up the Ohio bank I jumped nothing. Just below Brush creek I spotted some ducks ahead so I pulled out in the middle of the river to battle the 5′ white caps and run above them. I located the general area they were and saw that they were about 5 mallards. I crossed back to the Ohio bank at the mouth of brush creek to float down on them. I could not do it, the wind was so strong it blew me upstream and the front of the skiff turned down stream like a weather vane. I gave up and crossed over to the Ky side. I started putting down stream spotting with the binoculars. On the run up I saw geese at the green grass of Concord Ky. I now saw them below me , so I cut the motor and paddled as best as I could. They were up the bank about 20 yards from the waters edge, and they did not like the looks of me at all. They got up while I was 100 yards above them. Started up the 10 hp and putted on down. Below Concord a buck started swimming across the river about 200 yards below me. It got 30 yards out then turned around and swam back to the Ky bank. It did not see me because it ran up the Ky. Bank right past me. In 45 years of floating the Ohio I have seen deer do this maybe 25 times in the past. They start across and then turn back, I have no idea why.
At this point I am back at Manchester, so I pulled out and drove home, no shots fired.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Manchester Ohio River mile 397 02-28-2010 19:29
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 30-34 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Float 2-28-10
I finally got the 10 hp fixed 2 weeks ago, and I have been waiting to try it out. Got up at 7 this morning and it was raining, so I slept in and left the house at noon. Took the skiff to Manchester. I did not stop at the dairy yum yum because Debi fixed be bacon eggs and her world famous banana pancakes. I bought coffee and girl scout cookies at the Marathon on the AA highway at Mentor.
I got the skiff put in at the down town Manchester Ramp. Manchester was the first settlement in the northwest territory in 1791. I bet it looked better in 1791. River at 31,34 degrees and 5 mph west wind. I hate a west wind. I cranked up the 10 hp and ran US just ahead of a coal barge also going up the ky bank. I got far enough ahead of the barge to cross over to the ky bank. I started floating. By the way I have no gun just my camera. I got right up on 2 sets of 3 buffelheads. It was fun to float up on them, they would dive down and pop up right on top of the boat. I went down about 1 mile and saw nothing. I decided to crank up the 10 and Putt down. The 10 runs great. I went down about 5 minutes and spotted geese swimming out. There were about 10. I cut the motor and pulled into the bank to let them settle down. I drank a cup of coffee, and ate a few cookies. These were highly educated geese, they just kept swimming all the way across the Ohio River to the Ky bank.
I started on down and spotted a beaver sitting on a log at the edge of the water. Paddled down and got a good set of pictures of him, before he jumped into the water. I looked over and there he is swimming along side of me, I took more pictures. I looked ahead with the binoculars and spotted about 50 geese sitting on the bank just up from the Moyers Resturant. I paddled right on top of them, and got some great pictures, I would have gotten two with no trouble. Decided to call it a day and ran back, and home by 6:00. I saw do puddle ducks, just a few divers and geese.

Posted By:
nimrod57
Web Member

OOS 02-03-2010 19:57
Sunny & Clear, High Winds – 10-20 Degrees – Ice
Turn out the lights…the party’s over…. The day after waterfowl season is always a saddd day. this one was no different. But next season is but a few months away. I hope everyone’s season was a good one, mine was. I had some GREAT days some real good days and some good days. Hunted 19 days-had 5 days that we did not pop a cap. 7 days in double digits and 7 days in single digits. Some days were beautiful some were cold, some too warm and some absolutely miserable, but every single one of them was a Blessing from God and it was GREAT to be out there. I hope and pray I get to go next year as I hope and pray each of you do as well.
God Bless and Godspeed!
Shoot Em In The Face!!

Posted By:
Wareagle23
Guest

Meldahl Pool 02-01-2010 15:24
– – –
Well, here we sit, the day after and wondering what are we going to do now? The sadness really sank in this morning when my black lab greeted me at the back door, saw I did not have on my camo,looked at me with those big brown eyes and he just knew it was over. Dog instinct! He just turned and walked back to his hut and did not even want to talk about it. You see, every day he gets to go with me and stays in the SUV after the hunt while I am at work. He’s a business dog and his business is over till fall. I guess we will talk about it soon, but until I get over the fact it is over, I won’t be able to get him over the fact it is over. You know how it is, men just have to deal with it in their own way.

Anway, guys in the western part of the state did well as the birds returned from Missouri this weekend. Those who ventured out during the storm were greeted with great numbers of birds. As for us, well the snow stayed south and we just got the cold weather. The river rose and fell and that did not do us any good because the birds never showed back up. It was like a chef preparing a 5 star meal and nobody showing up it eat. Flooded fields were void of ducks. Late last week I was able to harvest one to three each morning at first light but by weekend that was getting old. I was seeing very few birds.

Saturday, my 10 year old son and I decided to go goose band hunting. We took the goose trailer and headed out. Hunted the Cave Run hunt in a field birds had been using but they did not fly Saturday morning. We put out 60 full bodies in 4 inches of snow and saw very few birds. Decided to move 45 miles north toward the Ohio river and setup on another corn field in the afternoon where we knew some banded birds were in the area. By now my son has decided we need to unload the full trailer. More decoys more success he said. After I was unable to convice him otherwise, we unloaded the trailer and put out all 156 full bodies. We were joined by some of our other hunting partners, thankfully to help load the trailer. We never popped a cap. Listened to the UK game and ended a day with a beautiful sunset.

Sunday, hunted in the afternoon and Cameron wanted to slip shoot so we walked the river bank. Ducks like to get in the brush and hang tight too the bank when river is in current stage. We have certain areas we know are good at such terror tactics and I sent he and Jethro in for the slip. Ironically, first stop ended in success with a black ducked harvested. Jethro made the retrieve and Cameron was excited because he did not want to end the year on 13 birds so he rounded in out with a trophy black duck.

To end the day, the year and another season we setup in a corn field adjacent to river with just the mojo. NO MORE BIG SPREADS I told Cameron. Ten minutes before final light 50 geese came right over and we took one final goose to end the year.

As we slowly watched the sun set over the mountain, our hearts sank as we knew it was over. Until the next season, no more “perfect sets”, no more “let downs”, no more “surprises”, no more “where did they come from” and no more “well gotta go because well I gotta go it’s waterfowl season”. The fat lady has sung, the bell has sounded and the sands of time have run through the season’s glass. Nine months till Canada.

It’s a long hot summer and I hope to see you on the other side!!

“I take no prisoners”

[Edited By Wareagle23 on 2010-02-01 12:12]

Posted By:
Wareagle23
Guest

Melhdal Pool 01-26-2010 13:57
Cloudy, Snow Flurries – 30-34 Degrees – Open Water
Well, here we are in the ninth inning and heading for the home stretch. From the Prairies of Saskatchewan, to the rice fields of Arkansas, to the big waters of KY lake and finally too the banks and corn fields along the mighty Ohio river, we have followed the birds. This has been another great year with times of inspiration leading to desperation with only dedication attempting to keep us going and on the X spot. We do a lot of moving around.

Our last week is going to prove challenging yet high hopes are in order. Our big number of ducks left with the warming last week going back north. Our geese have remained and have provided good chase yet their numbers have started to diminish and they are not consistent with their patterns. Some days of late they are very content to sit on large ponds and eat surrounding grass. We are on the chase of a bird found just this week with an orange neck collar. Spotted two specklebellies in our area which is very unusual.

I have either been scouting or hunting most everyday and this last week will be very interesting. The Meldahl pool is going to 49′ from Meldahl to Portsmouth by Friday. This is big, especially with the level for this distance. This will spread the water out in some new areas, flooding some corn and soybeans fields, we will be watching those very closely. If our ducks show back up with this cold snap and snow north of us, it will be interesting. The full moon will add additional spice as we anticpate the birds will move more in the afternoon. Whatever happens we will be there waiting and watching.

On a final note, one of our hunting partners found out that too much duck on the brain has implications. I summoned two of my hunting partners a little over two weeks ago to get here ASAP, the birds were here and within hours they arrived after their 5 1/2 hour trip. Unknown to one while sleeping at my house he had a seizure that night and awaken not in a state to hunt. His other partner asked if he was going to die, he said no, so he said I will see you in the field. See the compassion here when it comes to duck hunting! I dropped him off in the ER, not knowing what was going on, only to find out over the next couple of days of hospital stay, while the other partner and I hunted, that the seizure had caused his shoulder to be fractured and displaced and he had a broken vertebrae. All this was caused by a little something in the head, maybe to much duck, that will be removed on February 4th by the neurosurgeons at Vanderbilt.

To our good hunting partner Shay, I am trying to keep it light here and you are in our thoughts and prayers as well as those who will read this post. We will share many more sunrises with wind at our backs and ducks in our face. See you on the other side!

“I take no prisoners”

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River Hunt 01-24-2010 17:29
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 40-45 Degrees
Duck Hunt 1-23-10
After my no duck day yesterday, went to Rome Ohio River mile 384. My partner went to bed at 9:00 pm and his wife said do not disturb when I called to set up our hunt Friday nite. The man is 79. Had a great breakfast of pancakes, bacon and egg at the Alberdeen Yum Yum. Wane(a local) was there and was being harassed by a friend. I did learn the the Aberdeen Police had a guy spread eagle on the ground on 52 last nite. I have decided to take my model 12 instead of the 1100 today. Drove to Rome and was at ramp by 9:30 to see I was second. River at 35 cloudy Downstream breeze, yes I said Downstream. On the Ohio River the only time the wind blows it is from the west or US. As I was putting the boat in I hear Geese directly across from me. Got out the binocs and found them. I said to myself, good grilled Geese. As I was just ready to get started , in the Geese were making a racket, I look up and here comes Mr. Decoy hunter running up the Ky bank and scares up my grilled Geese. Must be pretty boring when you are already moving at 9:30 am. They run up about .5 miles and pull into the bank and start putting out decoys.

I decided to run up maybe 2 miles to let things on the Ky bank settle down. Ran up the Ohio bank and crossed over and started down. Beautiful float conditions. I saw nothing on the float back to Rome. I then sighted the decoy hunters decoys below. You can always tell decoys though binocs because they never move, or flap their wings. I started up the 10 to motor down and say hi. I spotted down and up for ducks flying so I would not screw them up. I saw their blind but they hid behind and did not say Hi. I motored on down and started floating. I know they were there because I could hear them talking when I started floating. Guess they didn’t want to talk. My partner refuses to talk to other hunters. One day I asked him why, and he said they are the enemy, I don’t talk to the enemy. I floated down for 2 miles and nothing. Then I spotted 3 blacks, but they swam out and took off. They were locals who have seen the floating log before. Same thing happened to the next 2 blacks I saw. The same with 2 blacks and 4 mallards. The blacks swam right out to the middle. The mallards started back in, but they took off when the 2 blacks took off. I kept on going down. I got up to take a pee, I just leaned over the side and when I finished two blacks jumped up right besides me. I did not shoot because I like to float them then shoot, not just shoot. What is unreal is they sat there while I took a pee while all the other blacks swam out and flew away long before I was in shotgun range.

Right after that I passed a big cottonwood with a massive root ball at the waters edge. There past the tree is a drake and hen mallard sitting on the waters edge. I eased up and dropped the drake and missed the hen 2 times. I watch my drake swim into the root pile. I pulled into the bank and looked all over and could not find him. In order to wait him out I ate some cookies and coffee. In past hunts, we have had them burst out from their hiding spot if you wait long enough. This one never did come out. Started on down. Just above Brush creek island I spotted 5 geese on the bank. As I was floating down they ran up the bank, got out of shotgun range and then flew away. Very smart Geese. The green grass of Concord was still there, but no ducks this time. Below Concord a spot two ducks swimming in a good ¼ mile in front of me. I spotted where they swam in and floated down. Here it was a creek mouth. Went past it and nothing. They must have swam back in it. I started the 10 hp up and ran back just to see where they went. I could, not go up it, there was a log across the mouth. Started back down. Just above Manchester Island I spotted 2 more ducks swimming in a good ¼ mile below me. I spotted them and paddled up on them. When I got to where they were , nothing. I floated down for 5 minutes, and decided to call it a day and head back. When I started the 10 hp, 2 blacks jumped up just in front of me. They must have swam down a bit. I ran back up the Ohio Bank and in 10 miles of Ohio bank jumped up 2 blacks. Pulled out about 3:30, the other truck was gone. When I went to winch in the skiff there was a black duck wing on my winch. A present from the decoy hunters?.
Heres where it really gets bad. My normal duck truck is dead, a bad transmission (getting it fixed) so I got the suburban, the truck from hell. Both have 265,000 miles on them. Instead of going to the Yum Yum for supper, I decided to try out KFC. Meal was great, when I went to start the suburban, dead started. Bad carma for not eating at the Yum Yum. I called Debi to come pick me up. My only running vehicle is my 1972 Ford Bronco. She was not very happy about the 60 mile drive. I changed the boat over to the bronco, told the KFC lady I would be back and went home. I just got back from changing out the starter in the pouring rain, and 40 degree temps. This is its 4th starter. I wish I would have shot the white duck.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River below California Ky 01-22-2010 18:07
Cloudy, Winds Calm – 40-45 Degrees
Duck Hunt 1-22-10
I was sick of working so I took off .5 day and went home and got the skiff and put in ay California Ky mile 447. The river is at 36’ no wind a sheet of glass. Started up the 59 Johnson 10 hp (picked up parts for 57 10hp at Dixie Marine on the way home) Cut motor just above California Boat Club. I spotted 4 mallards below me. I was not planning on shooting them, I was still in City Limits, but they insulted me by taking off when I was 60 yards out. Paddled all the way down to across from New Richmond. I crossed over just below downtown New Richmond. And putted down, I wanted to get below City limits. I jumped up 5 mallards. At the last house of New Richmond I cut the motor and started paddling. Floated all the way to Beckjord Power plant mile 453 and saw nothing . Ran back up Ohio bank and only saw maybe 20 ducks at New Richmond. Also a big bunch of white domestic geese at the boat ramp. Ran all the way back the Ohio side across from ramp and pulled out. Home by 6:00 . Did not fire a shot.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River below Rome Ohio 01-17-2010 20:13
Cloudy, Light Rain & Drizzle – 40-45 Degrees
Duck Hunt 1-17-10
Took the Skiff to Rome mile 384 Ohio River. My partner decided that he did not want to sit in the Rain. Had a great breakfast at the Aberdeen Yum Yum, had 1 egg bacon and two pancakes. Slight wind low of 40 and river at pool stage, and of course rain. I changed into my waders and rain outfit at the Manchester “fort” at the downtown ramp, in the building next to the river, in order to get out of the rain. There was 1 truck at the top of the ramp. I put in at Rome and ran across to the Ky bank. I look down and ducks are swimmimg out, and I look up and ducks are swimming out. Its good to see ducks. I backed out and ran across the river and up about 1 mile and then putted down. I spotted the first group and started paddeling down. They did not like me at all and swam out to the middle of the river and then took off. The next bunch did the same thing, and a group beyond them. I decided to try the Ohio bank, to see if they were less educated. I spotted about 4 and could but could not get close to them , they swam out to the middle and appeared to be swimming across. At this point it is raining hard. I floated down the good Ohio band below Rome and switched to the Ky bank, the wind was picking up and I was hoping the bend below Brush Creek would protect me. As I ran across, I pulled the plug on the skiff to drain out some water. The first time I have done that , and it works, as long as you go .75 throttle. I putted down the Ky bank above Brush Creek Island, it was a little calmer. I wish some one could make binoculars that work in the rain, almost useless.

I spotted by eye 3 ducks below me. I could tell that were blacks. I held the boat out a little more than usual, maybe 30 yards. I got about 50 yards up to them and they decided to swim down a little. I kept right with them, and they went back into the bank. I got up to maybe 35 yards, and they came back out. We floated down together, and at last they went in. I held the boat out until I passed them, and then turned towards the bank. They had no clue, got out and sat on the bank. I eased up missed the first shot , pulled a little more lead and got the second. That was my only shot. I had to shoot him 1 more time on the water. Pulled in for coffee to warm up. I did not have on gloves , because of the rain, and the hot coffee and donut revived me. Da_ I hate rain. Started back down. Just a little up from the island I spotted 1 drake mallard all by himself. Floated down and got right on him. I eased up and no. 2 duck for the day. I headed on down and spotted a drake on the bank. Floated down, and when I was still 50 yards out he and the hen who I did not see took off. I pulled into the bank for more coffee to warm up. Pushed off. Directly across from the Island, I spotted a drake mallard. I paddeled down and he is swimming Up towards me. I got right on him, eased up and he will not fly, it is a cripple. At this point the wind starts and it was tuff floating. I got down to the Power Plant, and had enough. I headed up the Ohio bank. I jumped one group of fish ducks. Pulled out and drove back to Manchester to change out of my wadders and rain outfit at the Manchester “fort” at the ramp. Had a good supper at the Yum Yum and home by 8:00.

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Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River at Carrolton Ky 01-16-2010 19:45
Sunny & Clear, Morning Fog – 45-50 Degrees
Duck Hunt 1-16-10
Since it was iced up above Meldahl last week I decided to try my old hunting grounds Down stream, I went to Carrollton Ky mile 546 Ohio River. Had a fantastic Breakfast at Welch’s downtown on the river. I walked in with a local Gordan , who allowed me to sit at his table with Mike and Mike’s grandson. River at pool, low 43 no wind sunny. Put in at the new ramp next to the Ky River. There were a lot of trucks at the ramp, I suspect some were fishermen. A commercial fisherman was pulling out at 9:30 when I was putting in. He gave a local catfisher a 30lb live catfish, The river was green and a sheet of glass. I started up and motored across and started putting down the Indiana bank. It is easy to spot ducks, it is a sand bank. I also was spotting the Ky. Side as I went down. I spotted two decoy hunters within 500 yards of each other below the little Ky. I said to myself this is beautiful, the river was fantastic. There was only one problem, no ducks or geese. I putted down 8 miles, within site of the Milton Bridge. I did see another skiff, he was running up and crossed over in front of me. I turned around a putted back up the ky bank, and saw no ducks. I did see 3 groups of geese flying downstream. When I passed the decoy hunters at the little Ky they had already pulled up. I pulled out at 2:00, did not fire a shot. I took a ride up to Milton and saw a few local ducks at Madison. I ran back 42 and stopped at gent Warsaw, and Craigs creek to look for ducks, nothing. Home by 4:00, did not fire a shot.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River Downtown Cincinnati -no hunt 01-13-2010 12:20
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 10-20 Degrees – Ice
I drive over the Ohio river at downtown Cincinnati (mile 470) every morning and nite. This morning there was ice in downtown Cincin. It has been frozen from bank to bank above Meldahl (mile 436) since last sunday. I have hunted the Ohio above Cincinnati for 43 years now, and back in the 60’s and 70’s the Ohio was never at pool stage during duck season. Pool stage at Cincin. is 24′, and the river never droped more than 30′ all winter long. Now it is at pool stage all winter long. The problem is when the big O is at pool, there is no current, so when it gets cold- ice. You cant float hunt with Ice or decoy hunt, which sucks. Pray for rain and a little warmer weather, then 1 more cold snap.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

01-11-2010 11:48
– – –
Hunters are out in force right now and most are taking a few birds. We tried to get out on Saturday but our water pump went out on the boat ramp and we headed to the shop. A quick search for parts showed there wasn’t one anywhere around to procure and put on for a hunt on Sunday. I did see several groups of hunters set up on the river. Some were boat hunting and some were simply walking in from the shore. I talked to several guys yesterday and they said numbers had dropped some from the middle of last week. I suspect a few headed out after the snow rather than stay and dig for food. There are decent numbers of mallards and geese seem to be pretty thick in several places. I talked to a guy who hunts out of a pit locally and he said they had been killing birds daily but not seeing a ton of birds. The ones that are passing seem to be willing to work the decoys. Diver numbers are still very low. A few buffies being killed and a couple of bluebills but that’s about it. Only a few weeks left, time to really get out and make it happen.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River below Foster mile 438 01-10-2010 16:53
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 10-20 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 1-10-10
My partner Jim could not make it today, he is having some minor health problems. (the man is 79). I had to work all week as well as Saturday, but got up at 6:30 and was going to drive to Rome mile 384 Ohio River. I was a little concerned about the ramps, the transmission is out on my 97 chev pickup , so I took the 97 Suburban, both are 4×4 (and 265,000 miles, yes I said 265,000) because the suburban has conventional tires and gets stuck in a heavy dew. I took the skiff, River at pool, no wind low last nite 11. I stopped and got coffee at the mentor marathon and decided to drive up Route 8. As I passed the river below Foster, it was clear, no ice. With the Ohio at pool stage for 3 weeks now and the low temps. I was surprised to see open water. But above the Dam was solid ice, from bank to bank. The normal Red full size chev was parked 1 mile below Snag creek. I crossed over at the new Maysville Bridge. I had a great breakfast at the Yum Yum and had a spirited conversation about Avartar, you all must see it and in 3D. As I drove east out of Aberdeen, it looked bad, river was still solid ice. I don’t think I saw trucks at the Maysville ramp.
Drove up to Manchester, and saw that it was hopeless, solid ice. Drove back and put in at Foster. Mile 438. Ramp was salted by the commercial fisherman out of Mentor. I was first at 10:00 am. Started the C motor after 20 pulls, (still waiting for parts for the A motor) Started up the Ky bank. Ran up to just below Bear Creek and Crossed over to the Ohio side. With no high water, I decided to putt down spotting ducks with the glasses. A decoy hunter ran up my bank and stopped at the new ramp across from Foster, to pick something up because 5 minutes he headed back down. I watched all of this though the Binoculars. Since he scared up the Ohio bank, I switched to the Ky bank, putting down slow. There was about 100 Geese between barges at Black River (mile 441.5) I passed them because I will not shot a goose next to a barge. I went over to say hi to the decoy hunter on the Ohio bank across from Black River. They said they had 1 but did see a lot of Geese. I switched back to the Ky bank. Below Black River, I spotted about 50 geese about 1/8 mile below the last barge. I paddled very slow with the almost non existent current. There were two just above about 50. I got right up on them and got one goose. I pulled in the bank and had a cup of coffee. I headed on down. I screwed up on about 10 mallards at the second set of barges below Zimmer on the Ky bank. I putted down next to the barge, and they saw me while they were 1/8 mile DS. I pulled into the bank to let them settle down. I pushed off and never did get close to them, they took off while I was maybe 300 yds away.

I spotted 2 ducks below me and floated right up on them. They were fish ducks, and I thought they were Canvasbacks, I got right up on them and dropped the drake. At this point I am across from Point Pleasant, and I look up and here comes a runner (bored decoy hunter) up my bank and crosses over at Point Pleasant. Since the bank below me is disturbed, and there really are not many ducks, I decided to head home. I ran up the Ohio bank, spotting with my binoculars as I ran up. Very easy to do when there are sand banks. Across from Black River I spotted 4 mallards. I ran across the ky bank, and up and above these ducks, and crossed over again. As I was running up I saw 3 bald eagles, 1 had a white head and tail, but the other two did not. They were too big for hawks. I floated down right on the mallards. At this point the sun is out and it is very pretty. The mallards are walking at the waters edge, and have no clue that I am not a big log. I dropped a drake and missed a hen. I started back up the Ohio bank and spotted 4 blacks about a mile above Moscow. I crossed over ran up about .5 mile and crossed over and floated down. I had spotted them below a down tree. As I was floating down , crows were sitting on the bank below me taking baths at the water edge. I don’t recall seeing that before. They would duck their heads in the water and splash it on their backs. I spotted my 4 blacks, and headed down. I was maybe 20 yards from the bank. I got within 25 yards and they decided to swim out, but at a non-alarmed pace. We chased each other for maybe 100 yards when I decided to take them, two shots and nothing. Headed back to Foster and was home by 4:00.

Posted By:
nimrod57
Web Member

little bit north, river 01-04-2010 19:03
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 0-10 Degrees – Open Water
hunted straight north of louisville on Sat. 8 degrees at dawn. scared up two flocks of geese with 20 to 25 in a fl0ck as we were motoring in to our chosen site. after we got set up we had one bufflehead fly by . he was gone by the time I thought to shoot him. We later saw two geese fly over and then one flock of 8 mallards they came and circled several times and finally came in to light, way out past the decoys. We convinced one to stay.
Sunday hunted a lake, saw several ducks but none of them wanted to work.
Cold cold, cold!!! But have seen no resulting ducks as yet.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

01-04-2010 12:48
– – –
On Saturday we hunted a pond that wasn’t completely frozen. There were about 100 geese on it when we got there. They flew off, we set up and waited. We saw 0 ducks and only had one small bunch of geese come back. Saturday night I found a pond that was open and had birds on it. Sunday morning we got there and it was frozen solid. 4 degrees temps will do that I guess. We set up anyway and saw several flocks of high flying geese all heading south but none gave us a look. We decided to hook up the duck skiff and go to the river for a little while. I was totally surprised by the lack of birds on the river. We went about 6 miles total and other than the usual town birds we saw very few ducks or geese. The other thing that’s odd is the fact that there are no divers around. We shot one goldeneye and that was it. Normally when it gets cold like this and the ponds freeze there will be buffies, bluebills, cans and so on down on the big water but we didn’t see any. The birds that we did see were all on points or in cuts behind points where there was calm water and exposed banks. I got a report a few minutes ago from a fella that was on the river this morning. They ended up with 2 geese and 1 wood duck (which was a cripple) but he did say they saw about 400 geese and 200 ducks. Hopefully with these sustained cold temps some more birds will show up. Stay careful, this is deadly weather right now.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Duck Hunt 1-2-10 01-02-2010 23:36
– – –
I forgot to mention, I saw a bald eagle on the Ohio band below Manchester.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River at Manchester Mile 397 01-02-2010 16:45
Cloudy, High Winds – 10-20 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt1-2-09
I decided to take the skiff to Manchester today mile 397 Ohio River. Low last nite was 17 river at 29, which is really to low to float, and high wind. I had a great breakfast at the Dairy Yum Yum. At water by 9:00. I picked this stretch because it is not as bad when the west wind blows, and it was already windy at 9:30. My regular 10 hp is still waiting for parts, so I tool my C motor, my 10 hp 1959 Johnson. It did not want to start, but finally did. I started up the Ohio bank until the Island then ran to Ky bank. Since there is no current I putted down slow looking though the glasses. I screwed up on a black and then 2 mallards, they were already swimming out when I saw them. The wind seemed to be blowing from my right side, so I decided to switch to the Ohio bank. Putted on down and spotted some fish ducks and 1 goose. The goose got out of the water and walked up to a barn for protection, unreal. By now the wind calmed a little, so I went back to the ky. Bank which I like better. (better cover and no houses) I spotted some ducks and cut the 10 hp and started paddling. I looked at the bank and there was maybe 10 mallards walking along the bank, and they appeared to be eating the weeds. I got right besides them, got 1 drake and the rest crossed the sun, and I was blinded and did not shoot. Picked up my one and pulled into the bank for coffee and a cupcake. Started back down. Wind started picking up so I tried the Ohio bank, but it was worse. By now it is really blowing. Decided to call it and day and had a fun run US in the 3’ white caps. (luckily I was going with the wind) .I ran up the Ohio bank but out far due to low water. At Isaacs creek I saw about 4 blacks and 5 mallards at the mouth, but it was too windy to run up and float down. Pulled out and had chili at the yum yum . Home by 2:30

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

12-30-2009 08:19
– – –
The action is still hit or miss but I think its getting ready to get better. Some of the small ponds are starting to freeze which will concentrate birds on bigger water. I have seen several flocks of geese flying high and several new groups of birds in the neighborhood. There are not many divers here yet but I have gotten reports of a few buffies and bluebills on the river. We put our skiff in on the Kentucky river Saturday and went 10 miles and did not see a single bird, duck or goose. Its the first time we have ever hunted the skiff and not seen a bird. We talked to some other hunters who were decoying and they saw one goose. Sunday we hunted a pond and shot two limits of geese (1 was banded) and a mallard. Its just being in the right spot until things freeze up a little more. The weather reports for this weekend look like some things will really freeze tight, several nights in the teens. Keep your eyes on the big water, we are going to find out pretty quickly what is here. Stay safe.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

12-23-2009 08:44
– – –
Its still spotty as heck right now. We killed 6 geese and a duck on Saturday and 0 on Sunday even though I thought for sure that Sunday’s spot was better than Saturdays. The birds that are around are very scattered as the ponds are not frozen. There have been a few ducks on the river but not enough for me to say go there right this minute. I’ve seen several wood ducks of late in some standing timber but that’s mostly it. The geese are changing fields and ponds frequently so if you find them try to set up the next day you can as they could really move a lot over the course of a few days. Keep in mind this weather as well, if it gets bad they will fly later so instead of being there before day light get out a little later so you can stay later.

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Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

12-16-2009 09:11
– – –
Thats good , I wish the black feet would come on down, If they would we will have a big black hole waiting on them.I want a big migration but the last time it happened was almost 10 years ago.back in 00-01 season so we have to be due. I Hope

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

12-16-2009 08:03
– – –
Goose, I saw in the neighborhood of 1K (which is a lot for around these parts) in my drivings yesterday. Not the most I’ve ever seen but good numbers and they are scattered out enough that people should get some good shoots. Not like it is when they all stage on an Ash Pond and no one gets a crack at them.

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

12-15-2009 14:27
– – –
Im down in western part of ky ,We havn’t seen any honkers yet.Need more weather up north.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

12-15-2009 10:14
– – –
The geese seem to have arrived in good numbers. I have seen flock after flock the last 3 days. I would check any fields that you have and especially any that might have residual water from last weeks rain.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

12-14-2009 09:10
– – –
Well Fellas we are now into the mix of the season and so far the results are spotty with some good success while others are doing very little. My brother put the duck skiff in on the river and started down. The water was up and there was some drift and heavy current. He and his partner skiffed several groups of ducks including several black ducks, but only managed 3 mallards. He said the shooting was not so great and that the ducks were tucked all the way up against the banks (as they usually are when the water is up) where there was grass at the edge of the water. When you are scouting and the water is up look for those pockets where the water makes it to the grass line. In past years this has been the key for us and the ducks find those spots, usually good numbers of ducks. They saw several groups of geese but they weren’t playing the skiff game. All told they saw about 100 ducks and 50 geese.
Sunday we went to a local pond that had been holding some geese. The ice was an inch thick. We broke out a little hole, put in some decoys and waited. We were treated to ducks (almost all mallards) working the decoys like crazy. We set a Higdon Pulsator and that really seemed to make the difference. The amount of water those things move is awesome. We set it and the Canned Carp decoy that Can O Maddie (over in the open forum) makes and we had some serious motion. We didn’t see a ton of birds but ever group that came by worked. We ended with a three man limit of mallards, 2 blacks and a goose. Oddly enough it had been mostly geese on the pond and we saw very few geese but about 100 ducks. Right now its about finding these little holes that are holding birds and hunting them quickly. These cold night will lock up water and birds will move on. Find them and hunt them.

Posted By:
bridgeman
Web Member

Ohio River at Brush Creek 12-12-2009 22:07
Sunny & Clear, Winds Calm – 25-30 Degrees – Open Water
Duck Hunt 12-12-09 Ohio River at Brush Creek
Today was a very bad day. I went to Rome with the duckskif. Jim decided not to go, so it was just me. River at 40 and low of 18 degrees. Had a great breakfast at the Dairy Yum Yum. At the ramp at 9:30. My battery was dead. Pulled out and bought a new one at Walmart in Maysville. Ran back up and put in at Brush creek. Decoy hunters were pulling out as I pulled in. My 10 hp needs new lower unit seals so I took the 1958 7.5 Johnson. It would not start. After pulling 100 times, I pulled the plugs and sprayed with WD-40. Still took 20 pulls to start. Ran out and headed up the Ohio bank about 1 mile and crossed over. I was banging around getting ready, and looked up and scared up about 6 mallards. I started paddling down. I proceeded to pass up 2 blacks, who I never did see. I had a very hard time getting up on ducks, they would let me get within 60 yards and they would get up and fly. The problem is most were blacks and I think they were local, and has seen the floating log before. Finally I got up on a bunch of Mallards. As I was floating down, they decided to swim into the bank. With the swift current, by the time I turned the boat into the bank , I was below them. I yelled to get them to fly, and only one flew close and I got it., it was a black mixed in with the mallards. The rest were just to far away. Pulled into the bank and had a cup of coffee.
Headed on down, and saw a duck sitting on the bank, I looked over the side of the boat with my binoculars, and screwed up on a bunch of ducks below me. The duck was a fish duck. Above Wrightsville I ran across another group of mallards and got 1 mallard. Headed on down. It was great floating weather, no wind and high river. I passed up two sets of blacks, because I never did see them, and they got up behind me. I got up on another group of mallards above Manchester Island and got 1 drake mallard, should have had more. I then saw a big bunch of geese across from the Island. They wanted nothing to do with me, and swam across to the island while I was a good 1/8 mile away.
I decided to call it a day and started the 7.5 and ran across the river, planning to run up the Ohio bank. The 7,5 locked up and stopped. I let it cool off and restarted it, the water pump was working, it ran for 2 minutes and locked up again, after making some very loud bangs. It is dead. I paddled down to Manchester and pulled the boat into the Ramp. I walked up to the first house and asked the guy if he would give me a ride to the Brush Creek Ramp. He did. Very nice guy. Got my truck and drove back and picked up the Skiff. Had a great supper at the Dairy Yum Yum. Home by 7:00

Posted By:
TylerWayne
Web Member

South Central Kentucky 12-10-2009 14:49
Sunny & Clear, High Winds – 25-30 Degrees – Open Water
Wind is out of the North West and numbers are starting to grow. All day scouting has given promise. Larger concentrations of Ring necks are begining to show up. Still only a few mallards scaterd out, but the north wind and clear skys the next few days should push some more in the area.

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

12-09-2009 08:59
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With the weather up north, and Ducks are starting to show.Things should turn around in the next few days or so.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

12-09-2009 08:31
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Slow slow slow seems to be the order of the day. I did some scouting on Sunday and there are a few birds around but not any big concentrations. The are several places that are holding decent numbers of geese and I suspect the right set up in a field adjacent to a pond or the river would produce a few geese. The ducks are widely scattered with a few here and there but no real numbers in any location. I have reports of a few being killed but its 1 here, 3 there sorta thing. I spoke with a friend who said Reelfoot had the worst opener even this past weekend. If you can find a few birds its worth trying it but pace yourself at this time of year for whats coming later. Many times we get burnt out early in the year when birds aren’t here and then don’t go late in the year when they are. Good luck and stay safe.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

11-24-2009 12:18
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Well guys and gals the season is upon us but it don’t look too good for the opener. I have seen good numbers of geese but the duck numbers are just not very good. I have seen a few woodies still and an occasional diver here or there but nothing of any number. Looks like maybe a goose shoot and hope for a duck might be the best route to go. Most of the geese I have seen are in alfalfa fields with a few being in corn here and there. The next best bet might be to set up at the mouth of a creek and try to pass shoot a woody or two as they head out. Good luck to everyone and have a great Thanksgiving.

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Kentucky Duck Hunting Report Archive

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

11-11-2009 15:27
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You have that right always a good time with Buddies.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

10-28-2009 09:49
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Awesome! Nothing like friends, shotguns and the Canadian Prairie.

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

10-28-2009 09:40
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The trip went well had alot of fun,The hunting was hard, But you just had to do your scouting.Just to go up there with close friends and meet new ones made the trip. The did good on geese and ducks, We shot 120 total. Almost everything was right in are face, The way i like it,

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

10-27-2009 08:49
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Slayer, how was your Canada trip?

Posted By:
eville
Web Member

Western KY 10-26-2009 19:21
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Hey Goose Slayer: Try High Ground Hunting Club in Smith Mills (just west of Henderson) at www.highgroundhuntingclub.com. Great waterfowling club.

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

Hunting clubs 10-26-2009 12:47
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Any body no of any hunting clubs around western ky. That are taking members,Looking to join a club. Thanks

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

10-12-2009 14:10
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Well fellas we had a great Canada trip. We ended with 271 birds for the trip, including a mix of ducks and geese. We harvested 18 species of ducks and geese and had some fabulous shoots. The weather was upper 40’s during the day and low 30’s at night. Friday it snowed pretty much all day accumulating to a couple of inches. We did some field shooting for geese and ducks but mostly hunted big water, lakes and marshes. Unfortunately now its time to set back for a month and a half waiting for season to start here. Dang, just when I was getting my swing down.
Anyone’s youth kill a deer this past weekend? I was going to take my son out Sunday morning but after traveling all day Saturday we were both too tired. Hopefully he will get one this weekend.

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

09-23-2009 12:46
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yeah im the same way , one week from today is when we head to canada. We are fired up also, Its going to be pay back time when we get up there.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

09-22-2009 07:38
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How did everyone’s woodie season go? We had a pretty crappy shoot on Saturday but Sunday wasn’t too bad. There seems to be a lot of woodies around this year. I have seen them on creeks and small ponds all over. I had a report yesterday of a lot of doves in some areas. Still very good numbers especially if you can find a silage field. The fish have really turned on good. We have been taking lots of crappie in 6-8 feet of water. Squirrels are still in the hickory’s but have started to cut walnuts pretty heavily. Its a good time of year to be out in the woods. Cool in the mornings, warm in the afternoons. Two weeks til Canada, I can’t wait. Anyone else got any trips upcoming?

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

09-16-2009 09:17
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Yea that will be kind of the same area has us, we will be there oct1 threw the 10

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Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

09-15-2009 07:34
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We are going about 1 hour east of Winnipeg. We are hunting the 5th through the 9th. I am hoping to get into some snows. I have reports that they are already trickling into that area.

Well this weekend turned out pretty good. We shot limits of geese Saturday and Sunday. We shot all of our birds over wheat fields this year. That’s a first. Although I have shot birds in wheat in the past, this year that was the only place that I could really pattern them. There are tons of geese around and we saw a couple hundred both days, its just hard to find them using the same spots day after day. The wood ducks are thick as well. This weekend should be lots of fun. I have yet to see and teal but the woodies are everywhere. Try looking for small secluded ponds. That’s where the most of the birds that I have been seeing are. The creeks and small rivers have held a few but the majority are on ponds. Hope everyone had a good goose season.

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

09-10-2009 16:02
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What part of manitoba are you headed, We leave sept 30 and come back oct-11, I have heard the same thing

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

09-10-2009 15:07
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So far its been OK. We killed 8 geese in a wheat field on Saturday morning and 1 was banded. A very old band that was nearly worn through on the edges. We shot 2 on Monday on a pond but should have done better. Oh well, its early yet. The doves seem to be very spotty. I have shot sunflower fields twice and one shoot was good while the other one was a wash. The places that have birds seem to have lots of them while the average places don’t seem to have many at all. Scout like crazy before you shoot or you could end up like us, only firing a few shots. The geese have been like typical early geese, here one minute and gone the next. In the past week I have seen them in clover, wheat, alfalfa and in a feed lot. Its kinda just where they want to be that day it seems.
We are going to Canada the first week of October and I hear its gonna be good. The crops (at least in the area of Manitoba that we are going) are 3 to 4 weeks late this year and water is abundant. There are already lots of ducks in the area up there so I’m looking forward to it.

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

08-27-2009 09:12
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Anybody going to canada this year , Im looking to get on a early goose hunt this year.I live in paducah, ky any help. I thank you alot

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

08-11-2009 08:33
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Squirrel starts this Saturday. There are nuts everywhere!! The hickory trees are hanging over with nuts and the walnuts and buckeyes are full as well. The squirrels have begun to test the hickory’s but I haven’t found any heavy cutting going on just yet. The early goose is just around the corner as is dove. I would usually have some geese located by now but all this standing water is making it tough. They are here one day and gone the next. Hopefully it will dry up some between now and then.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

05-07-2009 09:05
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The turkeys have really loosened up the last week or so. They were pretty henned up at the beginning of the season but we have had super luck the past 7 days. We have killed several nice birds and hopefully I can get my son on one this weekend (he missed two the opening week). We have done well getting on birds later in the morning. This past weekend we got on one at 10:30 and on Sunday we didn’t get on the one we killed until 12:15. They are still gobbling fairly well, but most of it is on the roost. Later in the morning they are firing back up. Stay late and good luck. I hope everyone has had a safe season.

Posted By:
GOOSE SLAYER22
Web Member

western ky 04-15-2009 13:33
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Yea im getting for turkey hunting also, Good Luck be safe.

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

04-15-2009 08:33
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The turkey season is almost here fellas. The birds are still grouped up (gobblers) so it might be setting up just right. This morning I saw 5 gobblers strutting in a field together so once they split up its gonna be on. Everyone be safe and post up some pics!!!!

Posted By:
Shawn-Keeton
Web Member

02-16-2009 15:10
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Our annual Wild Game Supper is coming up on Feb 28th at 5:00 at Providence Baptist Church just outside Campbellsburg. If any of you all are interested in coming shoot me a PM and I’ll get you some tickets. Its a fun evening.

Posted By:
nashua
Web Member

02-13-2009 19:13
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Is anyone hunting Snow Geese in Kentucky???

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