The Old Man rarely loaded his shotgun any more, leaving the shooting to the boys he’d trained to get ahead of the dogs and cut off the chase. For him, the chase itself, not the conclusion, was the purpose of the day, and he stayed as close to it as he could. “When I was […]

By Kevin Tate Outdoors Writer Loads designed to greatly reduce felt recoil in traditional centerfire rifles have continued to grow in popularity and variety in the past 10 years, offering a wonderful compromise for deer hunters and an excellent introduction to centerfire shooting for all. In 2004, Remington introduced special loads for the .270 Winchester, […]

The Old Man sat in the same recliner he claimed every Friday night when he and my grandmother stopped by to visit, and the conversation soon turned to the past Tuesday’s election. “We cancelled each other out,” he announced, jerking his thumb at his wife, who was already giving him a bad look. “I knew […]

By Kevin Tate Outdoors Writer In its simplest form, a knife’s edge is a pair of angles ground into steel. Keeping those angles consistent while sharpening, then, is the key to restoring the cutting ability of the place where they meet. The utility of any tool is found in its ability to function, an ability […]

Dry leaves covered the ground, thinner along the crests of ridges, then deeper in the valleys between. The air smelled like wood smoke, anticipation and December. The deer hunter among my Old Men walked at a brisk clip and I panted and hustled to keep up, a heavy rifle weighing on my shoulder, my heavy […]

By Kevin Tate Outdoors Writer It turns out our mothers were right when they encouraged us to take along a jacket when the low was going to be 60 degrees. Although death from hypothermia is something we normally associate with blizzards and deep snow banks, it can strike any time the weather is cool enough […]

Tires squeaked through careful turns on wet pavement as the engine rumbled its way uphill. Midmorning sunshine blazed from a high blue sky in places not blocked by mountain or tree. Between, the road was dark. I shifted sunglasses up and down while the transmission did the same with its gears. The map said this […]

By Kevin Tate Outdoors Writer When he hit the ground at the base of the tree, Jon Cunningham broke 12 ribs and many other bones, injured countless internal organs, lost the use of his left hand and, ultimately, lost his career. Still, he counts himself lucky. Through the years as an Oklahoma game warden, Cunningham […]

Lightning walked over the mountain behind us like the devil’s fingers playing piano. As it closed, each stroke slammed a crisp, bass note while we checked the bushes for rattlesnakes, looking for a safe place to hide. It was the first week of September in the Rockies of northwestern Colorado. The days before had been […]