Preparing For the Hunt!

Preparing For the Hunt!

By: Mike Reynolds

With hunting season here and the days getting a little shorter, now would be a good time to switch gears in your life and think deer hunting.   Once archery opens, its full tilt for the rest of the season.   Time, even more than normal, will be at a premium.  Now would be a good time to go through your gear.  Its way better to find out you need to replace something while you are in your driveway rather than as a deer of a lifetime walks in you shooting lane. 

I like to go over each type of gear separately.   I have boxes for each species I hunt so all I have to do is grab a box and go.  By keeping everything separate, I know everything I need for that hunt is right where I need it to be. Plano Molding makes a great box for this.  The Sportsman’s Trunk is ideal for getting everything in a handy portable box.  The folks at Plano even put wheels on it for easy maneuvering.   I like to take everything out and spread it out either on the floor or on a table.  I almost always find something broken that I tossed in the box last season and forgot about.  By getting everything out you will be able to make sure it’s all in working order and ready to go. 

Make sure clothes are in good repair, not ripped or faded.  I have found that sometimes over the summer clothes shrink while they are sitting in the box.  I’m not sure how that happens but it does.  I like to get those shirts and pants replaced.  Now is the time to wash your deer clothes in scent-free laundry soap.  Once I get them washed I like to put them in a giant Zip-Lock bag.  The camping dept. has a great selection.   This will keep them as scent free as possible.  Once you have your clothes taken care of, it wouldn’t hurt to make sure your favorite boots are in good shape.  Nothing can ruin a hunt faster than cold wet feet. 

Last year’s boots can be fine so long as they still fit and haven’t sprung a leak.  Everyone hates breaking in new boots but there’s good news-most boots now have a very short break in period if any at all.  I love the RedHead brand of boots with Gore-Tex.  This makes them not only waterproof but also helps keep your feet as dry as possible by allowing moisture to escape.  As anyone who spends any itme in the outdoors knows dry is warm.

The last things that need your attention will be the stuff you carry in your pack.  We all carry different things so you should make sure all are in working order.   I like to take the calls apart and clean any dirt or weed seeds that may have gotten into the reeds.  A light rinse in warm water doesn’t hurt either.  I also clean out any garbage that I have put in there.  It never ceases to amaze me how much trash I accumulate, then again one of the most common items in my pack is food.   I always put the wrappers in my pack.  I usually find trash that I take out as well.

If you can find the time before season starts to do basic maintenance on your gear, you will have more time to do what we all live for come fall.  Every minute spent prepping now will give you that much more time in the stand waiting for Mr. Tender and Juicy.

 

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Walk a Mile in My Shoes

So many shoes! That’s what went through my head when I went to Bass Pro Shops Katy the other day. I couldn’t believe my eyes: there were so many choices to be had. All the associates were super friendly and attentively helpful, but I just wanted to take my time looking. There was a massive wall dedicated to shoes. There were other cases and shelves dedicated to specific footwear and the shelves were sometimes short and sometimes tall enough that I couldn’t see over the top of them. I could imagine all the different reason and scenarios that I’d need ALL the shoes for. Everyone needs to have shoes you know.

Most of the shoes were for outdoor stuff. There were boots, so many boots. I could just imagine hiking through the forest in RedHead® Talus II Waterproof Hiking Boots. They’re so well built. They’d support my ankle and give my foot a little cushion and a lot of grip for if I slip. They’re even waterproof! Then I got to thinking about getting my feet in water. I definitely don’t want to get my feet wet so I’d probably need a pair of RedHead® 800 Gram Thinsulate 16'' Side Zip Rubber Boots, they even zip on for easy wear! Or I could wear one of the many different styles of waders and wading boots Bass Pro Shops Katy had on display. Then again if I just want to protect my feet in water and don’t mind getting wet like at the river then I could wear the Aqua Sox or Crocs that they sell.

While that would all be good for fishing, I started to wonder about hunting: ‘tis the season. They had work boots and hunting boots galore, I turned around and everywhere I looked – there they were. There was rubber and snake boots and insulated and uninsulated boots for men, women, AND children. You wouldn’t believe how happy this made me. With the help of Bass Pro Shops I can take my whole family hunting and properly outfitted in RedHead® gear.

At that thought I decided I needed to do some shopping. They had lots of other shoes for lots of situations and occasions indoors and out, but I needed to get hunting gear: I’d forgotten that was why I’d come to Bass Pro Shops Katy! I do think you should come in and see what all they’ve got though. Everyone is sure to find something they like and at an amazing price!! I love Bass Pro Shops Katy. 

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Scent Elimination

 

You have your gun, ammo, camo, and tree stand.  Have you thought about making sure that deer cannot smell you?  The best defense against having that deer realize you are watching him is your scent.  Odors that we find nice are very offensive to a deer.  That is why it is important not to have any smell that might alert them.

We do not realize how odors may affect hunting.  Aftershave, soap, cooking odors and many more scents attach themselves to clothing and us. Bass Pro Shops has a wide variety of scent elimination products that will appeal to you.  Here are just a few items you may want to consider.

If you want a soap that can be used on your hair as well as your body, consider Hunter's Specialties Scent A Way Liquid Antibacterial Soap.  This soap will deordorize and neutralize human odor.  It has been around for years. Just look on our website to see all the positive reviews.

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Don't forget that you need protection from scent in your clothing, boots and gear.  The Dead Down Wind Scent Prevent Evolve Field Spray works well and can be applied upside, down to make sure you get it everywhere.

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Make sure you wash your hunting clothes in a scent eliminating laundry detergent soap.  The Hunter's Specialties Scent A Way Laundry Detergent has a rinse and stain guard that prevents the re-depositing of dirt.  This detergent is very concentrated so a little goes a long way.

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Once that laundry is done consider the Hunter's Specialties Scent A Way Odor Control Dryer Sheets.  This will work on all fabrics and helps prevent static cling.  These sheets will also leave no residue in your dryer.  Another good idea is when you put your clothes away for the season put a few of these inside your box or large zip bags.

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Something as simple as brewing coffee or making breakfast in the morning leaves a scent on your hands.  The Hunter's Specialties Scent A Way Antibacterial & Deordorizing Bar Soap  will eliminate odors and  is fragrance free

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Last but not least protect your lips from the UV rays with a SPF15 lip Balm.  The Hunter's Specialties Scent A Way Lip Balm will do all that without giving you a scent.

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So there it is, scent elimination at its best.  Stop on down and check out all the products we have to help you get closer to that buck.

 

Robin Piedmonte - Events Coordinator

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Gear for Cave Exploring

Cave exploring is a guaranteed adventure for almost anyone. While exploring alone is attractive to some taking the whole family on a cave diving adventure is just as fun. Exploring a cathedral room or finding a hidden chamber deep underground is the kind of stuff stories are made of, and in the Ozarks caves are definitely not in short supply. But a cave exploring expedition can become treacherous if the right gear is not on hand to deal with situations that might arise along the way.

First thing any caver is going to need while underground is a good light source. This needs to be not only a steady source of directional light but also a solid design that can take a beating and will not need constant maintenance while in the cave. It is also a good idea to take a few forms of light for exploring underground. A headlamp is the first order of business. For the new caver a simple light that is rugged should be used. The Primos Top Gun LED Headlamp is a good starter headlamp because it has both high and low settings for while in the cave and an easily adjustable head strap to keep the light in place.

LED headlamp

After the headlamp a good idea would be to have a regular flashlight that can be stored in a pocket just in case the headlamp goes out. For this job the Bass Pro Shops® Mini LED Flashlight Combo - 6 Pack, because there are 6 lights in this pack it is easy to put one in a pocket, one in a backpack and hand one to each child in the cave exploring. Also these little lights are very bright and durable making them perfect for the cave!

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Another light source that could be used in an absolute emergency would be a chemical light stick or glow stick. A good choice for glow stick would be the Texsport® Glo Lite Stix™, these glow sticks provide 6 hours of continual low light making them good for an emergency in a cave.

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The next stumbling block that many cavers will run into while exploring underground, will be dehydration. While the temperature in the cave might be cool and moist, the physical exertion of climbing over rocks and crawling through narrow passages does tend to cause sweating and dehydration. An easy way to avoid this would be to carry a hydration pack with at least a liter of water in it. This pack will need to be durable enough to make it through the cave without tearing a hole in it and keep the water drinkable for an extended period of time. A good pack for the job is the CamelBak® Rogue™ Hydration Pack, with a coated nylon outer casing this hydration pack is great for the scrapes and bumps a caver is going to run into while exploring. Another pack that is great for the job is the Bass Pro Shops® XPS® 1.5L Hydration Pack, this pack has a low profile and durable polyester coating making it perfect for climbing through tight spaces and over rough surfaces.

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In a cave, regular clothing tends to be ripped to shreds on the limestone and gravel that is throughout. So finding the right clothes to cover softer underclothes is needed. Styles that tend to work well for the cave are the coveralls and bib overalls. What a caver should look for in coveralls and bib overalls is the durability and wear ability. If the coveralls are going to fall apart after crawling on knees for a few hundred yards then they are not going to be caving material. While at the same time if the overalls ride up or chafe when walking then they will definitely not be usable in the cramped spaces of a cave. Carhartt® Sandstone Bib Overalls are a great set that fits the bill for the rigors of crawling around a cave. The double ply knees make this pair great for being down and dirty while still remaining comfortable in tight situations.

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Now that the clothing is covered it is time for the boots that will be needed in the cave. These boots need to be tough and most certainly waterproof, while also having the traction needed for walking on the slick limestone and loose gravel of the local caves. A good pair of boots that fits the bill is the Columbia Woodburn Mid Waterproof Camo Hiking Boots. This pair of boots has a solid hard sole made for hiking over rough terrain, and is comfortable enough to wear on a long walk, making these boots great for being in a cave environment. Another good set of boots for this job is the RedHead® Osprey Hiking Boots. These waterproof boots have a good set of removable insoles that keep the feet comfortable while providing the support and stability needed for walking and crawling around in a cave environment.

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Now that the gear is gathered and clothing is ready to go it is time to head to the cave and go over a few tips and tricks for being in a cave. Before leaving for the cave, it is a good idea to let a friend or relative know the exact location of the cave that is going to be explored. Also tell them how long the trip will take and to contact the proper authorities if a certain amount of time has passes and they don’t get a confirmation that everyone is alright. Keeping a phone turned off in the car is a good idea, while taking a phone into the cave is also important, if more than one phone is available. Note that some phones are able to work well in certain caves so having a phone can come in handy. Keeping a small stock of chemical stick lights is a good way to assure that even if all electronic lights fail there will still be enough light to find a way out of the cave. Finally keeping a length of cord handy, so kids and adults have something to hold on to while walking and keep from getting split up from the group. Now that the gear and tips are dispensed it is finally time to go into the cave! As always happy hunting and good luck! 

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Ascend Rainwear to Uganda

Bass Pro Shops Altoona once again recently had the opportunity to assist the Des Moines Blank Park Zoo with a special partnership.

The Zoo supports the Chimpanzee Sanctuary and Wildlife Conservation Trust (CSWCT) and provides much needed everyday materials to its team of Ambassadors. These 27 people work tirelessly in the African rain forest, monitoring wild chimpanzee troops and other rare animals; protecting them from poaching and capture for the illegal pet trade. They also educate the local communities about preservation of the precious habitat and reforestation techniques.

Blank Park Zoo adopted this courageous team in 2012 and has provided donations of needed gear and equipment to ensure success of this program. things we often take for granted, everyday items like quality hiking boots, flashlights, rainwear, GPS units, and cameras are often unavailable and expensive in Uganda, so the Zoo collects them through donations and sends them to the team in Africa. 

Bass Pro Shop Altoona has been involved since the beginning, helping two years ago by assisting with a supply of waterproof RedHead boots for the workers. This year we contributed Ascend raingear at a discount. Each member of the team was outfitted with durable rain jackets and pants that will help them carry out their important work in the forest!

Bass Pro Shops Altoona

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Product Spotlight - RedHead Waterproof Aerosol Spray

When we enter September in Iowa, we are usually not looking back at a wet August. This year is different. We had the third wettest August on record...instead of scorched and brown, we are green and beautiful. Wetter weather, coupled with RedHead Waterproof Aerosol Spraysome new children's outerwear that has just arrived for fall, created a lesson on waterproofing spray at a recent morning meeting that we'd like to pass along.

Our Apparel Department was showcasing some new Bass Pro Shops children's jackets that are water resistant, but not waterproof. Bass Pro Shops Altoona General Manager Jason Truman says his family uses the RedHead Waterproof Aerosol Spray on just about anything they use outside...even an umbrella! 

"Having kids, it works to help keep them dry, but it also helps to keep stains from setting into their jackets.  Every time we buy a new jacket, coat, pair of shoes or boots, backpack, etc., we hit it with the waterproofing spray.  It probably sounds crazy, but I’ve even used it on an umbrella...now my wife doesn't have to leave an umbrella in my spot in the garage to dry out...it's a win-win for both of us!"

On items that don't have taped seams, which allows water to come in a bit, the spray still does a great job of repelling most of the water. 

Truman says one of his favorite features of the RedHead Waterproof Aerosol Spray is that it is NOT a silicone-based product. It can be used on Gortex® and Gortex®-like products, without losing the breathability that is so important to those products. Why put waterproofer on a Gortex® product, since it is already waterproof? 

"Good question - I do on things like boots, because it protects the leather on the outside of the boot and keeps it from absorbing water. The Gortex® in shoes and boots is usually not on the outside, but a liner contained in the construction of the product. That means the outside of the shoe or boot is not really waterproof, but your foot should not get wet because of the liner. To protect the materials on the outside of the boot, keep it from absorbing the water and adding extra weight to your feet, the waterproofer works wonders."

Truman says before covering an entire item, always spray a little on an inconspicuous part of the product, to make sure it doesn’t discolor it.

Made in the U.S.A.

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If It Fits: Ariat Fatbaby- Gator Print

There may be nothing more American for footwear than a good boot! From work boots to cowboy boots, there is something about them that speaks directly to us. Point in fact the first thing my now-wife said to me was that she likes my boots. And you can tell a lot about someone by what kind of boots they wear (if any at all! But that’s a separate topic for another time).

One of my favorite brands of boots just released a new style. I’ve talked about the brand Ariat before and even this exact model of boot before. The Fatbaby has become a quintessential boot for any cowgirl to own. They are tough, comfy and hardworking. (Just like a man should be!) They are also an extremely good looking boot as well. Cleaned up or messed up, they have a style to them that is undeniable.

Now I have what is known as an eye for exotics. If you know boots, you know what I mean. If not, let me explain. Exotics are the kinds of leather used besides your standard kind. Exotics can include, but are not limited to: ostrich, snake, alligator, elephant, lizard and others. Ostrich boots are usually the most easy to identify from the holes where the feathers were. What kind of exotic you would wear can also tell a lot about someone. My buddy’s dad swears by ostrich as it tends to last longer for him.

This latest Ariat Fatbaby has the best of both worlds. It has suede leather but with a gator print. So it gives the eye-catching impression of being an exotic but the ease of care with standard leather.

Like all other Ariats, these boots are built to last! They have a four layered rebound system for comfort and stability. Along with a blown rubber outsole that will stand the test of time. The 1.5” heel is perfect for its original design, riding.

The only bad thing about them… its only for girls. Lame…

But guys, you can still get a pair for your lovely lady. You can take pride in all the compliments she will get from them and be weary should she need to give you a good kick in the rear!

-Giddy-Up!!

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Fly Fishing Basics

Here we are again, right in the middle of summer.  Temperatures in July and August are only going to continue to rise. Some folks call these the "dog days of summer," but I call them a perfect time to cool off and catch fish. Now is a great time to go stand thigh deep in some ice cold water and catch some decent size rainbow trout. The Lower Mountain Fork River wanders through the rolling hills of southeast Oklahoma just outside of Idabel providing both Oklahomans and Texans a great fishery and a prime place to cool off.  Its waters flow from the deepest part of the dam that forms Broken Bow Lake at Beavers Bend State Park. The water is re-oxygenated and sent downstream. The cold, oxygen-rich water not only supports the rainbow population, it plays an integral part in creating a habitat where the fish can actually procreate and grow.

 I'd suggest a pair of White River waders and wading boots because that water is just too dad burn cold to stay in for more than a few minutes. The reason for the wading boots is that regular tennis shoes aren't made to grip the bottom and you could end up "floating your hat" as they say.

 Here are a few more good tips for your trip. If you have never fly fished before then by all means take advantage of Bass Pro Shops of Garland FREE fly casting seminars on Saturday or Sunday at 11:30 a.m. or both! The pros in the White River Fly Shop can introduce you to the basic cast and familiarize you with any of the terminology your may have heard associated with your new sport. Come in and enjoy the camaraderie in a fun and relaxing atmosphere. You don't need to bring anything; we have all the equipment you'll need for the class.

 All of your White River Fly Shop associates have fished the Lower Mountain Fork and most of us will agree that if you had to pick just one fly rod to take it would be an 8 ft. 6inch 5 weight rod with matching floating line. If, however, you have numerous rods to pick from, perhaps an 8-foot 4 weight but I don't recommend much lighter weight than that because there are some "hosses" in the river. Whatever your rod situation, we have something to fit your needs and your pocket.

 Your White River Fly Shop also has the hot flies for the area. Word to the wise: Get some flies before you go! If you're an early riser you might be at a loss for flies if you wait on the local shops to open. Some flies to add to your fly box before you leave are the Y2K bug, a few size 20 red zebra midges, flashback hare's ear in size 16 and smaller and a couple of pink San Juan worms will work well especially after a rain.  For those who prefer a dry fly, we suggest size 18 caddis flies in black, green or tan. From time to time the best dry fly is the blue winged olive in about a size 20, and don't forget your dry fly floatant to keep your flies afloat and the fish afraid.

 We look forward to helping you beat the heat by getting to your favorite cool trout stream. Whether you're a novice, a seasoned veteran or are just getting re-introduced to the sport, come on in to the White Rive Fly Shop of Garland and see why we call it your fly shop....oh, and don't forget your net... you're going to need it!

 

 

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Get The Right Boots on the Ground This Fall

As the days start to get shorter we are drawing closer to opening day of deer season and if this is the year that you are going to get new boots to hunt in you may want to start thinking about what you want and what is going to work best for you. I have a few different pairs and each has its best time to use but I am going to just look at two basic types and what they do best.

Rubber Knee Boots:

RedHead® Guide 16'' Waterproof Rubber Boots for MenI would have to say that more than half of my trips to the deer stand are made in this style of boot. They are by far the best when it comes to scent control on walking to and from your stand.  Being all rubber they do not hold a lot of scent in the material of the boots and also allow you to walk through streams and low rivers to get to your stand without getting your feet wet and knocking off any odor that you may have pickup along the way. The downside to these boots is that they do not breathe. So if your feet sweat a bunch you may have issues with keeping your feet warm without the right sock combo. 

 

Leather Hunting Boots:

RedHead® 10'' Treestand II GORE-TEX® Insulated Boots for MenThese are the boots that most of us think of when we think hunting boots. They are mostly a lace up style of boot which will fit your foot better and make it more comfortable to walk longer distances in. These boots breathe and those with waterproof membranes are waterproof to crossing creeks and the chance of getting caught in a shower. But know that if you are walking through rain soaked grass and field that your feet will get damp. The act of water through the grass is forcing water through the membrane so your feet will get damp. I find myself wearing these boots once it falls below freezing. It easier for me to get the right combo of socks on and the leather will let my feet breathe. 

 

Come in and let our trained staff in the footwear department help you pick the boots that will work best for you. 

 

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How my epic hike Will Help You Perform Better

 

Here at Bass Pro Shops we are always interested on where people are going on their next trip or adventure. Sharing you outdoor experience and finding out where you just came back from makes our job worth wild. I myself love to get out, see new places and find amazing ones to return to. Isn’t that what makes it worth wild to outdoors man. Recently I took a trip to the Saint George Utah area to visit some family and check out Zion National Park. I had previously seen beautiful pictures of the Red Rock Mountains and the amazing Narrows Hike. So I began to do research and figure out the best way to plan for my trip. As I looked at the Zion National Park websites and stories from people who had been there I came across a picture of the Subway Hike. It looked amazing but sounded intense!! I said to myself “I gotta do this!” Although I looked into planning my trip for a few weeks Zion is so popular that for many of the backcountry hikes you must get reservations months in advance. There is a 3 day lottery that is available and which I put in for. It costs $5.00, but it’s a lottery (which I ended up not getting).

Then I called the park and asked what happens if people don’t show up is there any way to get that spot the day of. They said yes and to show up early. I drove up to St George on a Saturday with my family. St George is about 1.5 hours past Vegas from our store here in Rancho Cucamonga. I stopped at the park station to get permits, they opened at 7am. So on Sunday I got geared up and drove to Zion at 4am. It only took 40 minutes to get to the park, but I wanted to see the sunset on the canyon. That’s not something I get to enjoy every day. I was there so early that I couldn’t pay the $20 park fee for entering. I drove 12 miles up then turned right on highway 89 through the Mount Carmel Tunnels. These are some of the longest sandstone tunnels that you can drive through in the US. At the end of the first long tunnel is a spot to turn out. Right there is the start of a trailhead. I hiked into the dark with my spotlight and up this short .5 mile trailhead. After crossing a bridge and going beneath the rock formations I reached the open view of the giant Zion National park. This put me directly above the Red Rock Canyon. At 6:15am the most spectacular sunset accrued upon the red mountains and breathtaking canyon. I then drove to the ranger station with the intent to get a permit just in case someone failed to show up for their hike. I figured if it worked out I would do my desired subway hike and if not I would do the popular narrow hike which was open to anyone. Forntauntly there were 2 spots open for the Subway hike, one was mine. Now, there is two ways to do the subway hike either from the bottom up (9 mile hike) or from the top down (9.5 mile hike). The top down hike sounded more exciting but would need to have repelling gear & coordinate a shuttle to ending point. Since I was going solo the bottom up was the one I was going for. After my sunset (1 mile) I did have blisters occur on the backs of my heels so I switch back to my older hikers that have better ankle support. I also applied mole skin and 2 pairs of socks, to help protect the blisters.

I drove to the subway hike that was about 25 miles from the ranger station. This was on a road that left outside the town of Virgin and went in and out of Zion Park and private property for 40 miles and dead ends at Kolob Reserve. On a side note, I fished Kolob Reserve on another day with my daughter and the trout fishing was excellent. It was 9:15am when I made it to the hike starting point. I always get super excited when I do a hike or trip for the first time. Although I have seen pictures online before of this location there is something different when you embark into the unknown and a magnificent new outdoor location. I tighten the laces on my hiking boots, got my hydration pack adjusted and began the adventure. The beginning 1 mile is a solid dirt path before getting to an 800 ft. descent that zigzags to the canyon floor. Be careful, not a fun place to slip and roll down. Once you reach the bottom the path it comes and goes as you navigate 4 miles up the stream over boulders and through the stream. As I walked through and along the creek I noticed many holes of clear water filled with 6- 12 inch Cutthroat Trout. I would have brought a pack pole if I knew fishing was allowed. The possibilities of seeing a rattlesnake was very high but I didn’t come across any. I did run across a King Snake and variety of lizards running around. There were Western Fence Lizards, Long Tail Lizard, Alligator Lizards, Skinks and a neat looking Long Tail Lizard with rainbow colors.

As I progressed along, the red canyon wall became more and more narrow. It was still midmorning, but the sun was beating down on me with temperatures above 90 degrees. I fortunately brought hydration pack, extra bottles of water, Gatorade and a PBJ sandwich that was made by my 6 year old daughter. On top of the heat I had a sinus infection. It made it hard to walk, drink from hydration pack and breath at the same time. I was going to do this no matter what. Being surrounded by the beauty of the canyon drove my focus away from the heat of the sun. The hike started to take shape of a subway, but the river was like red rock steps into another world. The entire hike up I didn’t come across any hikers until about the 4 mile point. I hiked past them and at the end of the hike was an even more spectacular view than had been captured in any photography I had seen. You could truly see how exquisite the formations were and why it was called the Subway Hike. All though I was at the most famous part of the hike, I still wanted to see what was around the corner. I climbed up a 15 foot tree that had fallen against the rock wall and felt the adrenaline pumping through my blood stream. This was not only unsafe, but a very dangerous decision. I then began to scale a rock face. It looked as if, it would only be another 10 feet and then I could get back to solid footing. As I started to climb I realized how this decision was not my best. If I got hurt up there, it would be quite some time before someone would find me. Plus this is only day 2 of my vacation and it would ruin my other 6 days not only for me, but for my daughter.

I got down off the rock ledge and found a spot to sit. I let my heart rate slow down and looked over the amazing subway pools. This was the perfect place to eat the delicious peanut butter and jelly that my little girl had made me. I took some pictures and felt so accomplished. I was thankful that I made the right call and didn’t get hurt. I held my PBJ up high yelled “WOO”! I heard the echo and took another bite. As I walked out it was about 1pm and it felt like peak temperatures for the day. I came across a young 12 year old boy and his family. He asked me how much further and I told him “about a mile, the canyon is starting to look really epic at this point.” His sister asked if there was a place to fill up there water at the end. I said “no why are you guys low?” The Dad said that there was a miss communication with his wife on how much water to bring. He had been drinking out of the stream so that the family could use the water supply. I stated “o no, Daddy’s going to get sick” Anytime you drink from water not coming directly out of the mountain you risk getting sick from bacteria. Like really sick, some people even die. So I gave them one of my extra water bottles that I later regretted because I wanted to poor it on my boots before getting back in the car. I walked for another 40 minutes and came across a young couple wearing swimsuits like they were heading to a waterpark. They asked me how much further to the end. I looked at them and stated “about a mile, the canyon is starting to look really cool now.” I hiked for several more miles and the heat was beating down on me. It is important not to dwell on negativity of extreme heat or fatigue when hiking as that will just make it worse. I kept my mind occupied on other things like thoughts of women, family, work and life. Also I thought of my drink in the cooler surrounded by ice, waiting for me.

How I could really use a cold drink at this point. I even came up with a little jingle during the hike and before I knew it I was close to the end. I pushed myself up the steep climb and then up the zigzag trail and finally made it to my vehicle. I was proud of my amazing hike and new experience and glad that I finished safely.

Here are some of the things that I am glad I brought:

- Merrel Moab Mid, Gortex hiking shoes

- BPS Trekking pole ( walking stick) - XTR hydration pack

- Life straw ( didn’t use but was ready in case I ran out of water)

- Mole skin ( saved feet from blisters)

- Extra pair of socks - Headlamp

- First aid kit

- Shorts for hiking

- Sunscreen, sunglasses & hat

- Artic Cooler ( neck tie that keeps cold)

- 12 oz. bud light Utah has a high amount of injuries due to heat exhaustion and hikers not being prepared.

http://www.basspro.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CFPageC?storeId=10151&catalogId=10051&langId=-1&appID=94&storeID=52

Dangers to be prepared for:

-Rattlesnakes (I didn’t see any but they could be) the trekking pole can help to get them to rattle and give you warning.

- Mountain lions ( very unlikely to ever see one) Never let children run ahead as they are attracted to running, solo hiking is not encouraged, if a mountain lion approaches make a lot of noise, wave arms, throw rocks and if the attack fight back !!

- Weather warning extreme heat, flash flood warnings and cold waters in the winter. PLAN APPROIPRITLY. - Filter and disinfect water. Do not risk getting giardia and drink from stream or river. Other neat things to check out in Zion National Park.

- The Narrows hike down/up ( as far as you’d like 2 miles to neat part)

- The Narrows hike up/down 16 miles and shuttle is needed

- Angels Landing ( long drop offs have to hold onto chain part way)

- Kayenta Trail ( overlooks emerald pools) I definitely recommend for visit to Zion National Park. Get outside and explore with the family. Let me know how it goes.

Until the next adventure I’ll see you upstairs at Bass Pro Shops.

http://www.utah.com/nationalparks/zion.htm

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What Do You Use Waders For?

What do you use your waders for?  Do you fish, duck hunt, kayak or do you use them to put in your dock?  Perhaps you need them for work such as being a zookeeper, watertreatment, or chemical plant worker.  Whatever the reason may be we have a large variety of waders to pick from.  With so many brands out there don't forget to take a look at the Redhead Brand by Bass Pro Shops. 

The Redhead Bone Dry Big Man Neoprene Boot is roomy with a full cut.  Very easy to move in and comfortable add waterproof to it and it makes for a great pair of waders.  These waders hold your body heat inside for extra warmth with 600 grams of thinsulate.  Another plus is the expandable side gussets with adjustable straps.

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Need somthing affordable?  Who doesn't these days,  try the Redhead Bone Dry Hobbs Creek Chest Waders/Lug Sole.  These waders have two layers of lightweight 3 ply nylon jersey and have a 100% waterproof barrier.  They resist cracking and are tough and comfortable.

hobbs

 

 

 

 

 

The Redhead Classic Series II Brown Neoprene Boot/Foot Waders come in mens, ladies and youth.  Lug sole, flexible and have 200 grams of thinsulate.  These waders also include a handwarmer pocket and have padded knees for extra durability.

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So stop on by and check out the variety of waders we have to keep you warm and dry this May.

 

Robin Piedmonte - Events Coordinator 

 

 

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Simple Steps with Wes - Search and Rescue:

Most of us will go out on a grand adventure and fantasize about the experience.  We will select a location, dream of all the sights and make sure our camera is charged.  Rightfully so, and no one wants to think of a negative event happening on our trip.  Unfortunately this is when exposure to potential danger is at its peak.

I guess my years in the wilderness has made me complacent with this or it is just second nature so I don’t give it much thought, but planning to get out of a bad situation is high up on my trip prep list.  I worked as a Search and Rescue K9 handler in New Mexico for four years and as a first responder for over 12 years. Understanding how a search and rescue operation works will make you more effective in being rescued.

 First, most search and rescue teams in the U.S. are a voluntary force.  This means that like volunteer fire departments they meet regularly for training and usually get funding for equipment or gear through grants, some state or county funding, and local fund raisers or donation.  This also has a negative in that the response time to have boots on the ground and actively searching for a lost person may be 2-4 hours once the activation made. Depending on the team and terrain they will be broken into different type of search teams.  I served in southern New Mexico.  Similarly to the Phoenix and Tucson area it was dry, scrub brush littered landscape.  There were different mountain ranges in the area but overall much more remote and less dense population.

We were trained to look for patterns and things that are out of place such as broken branches on trees in a linear path, or dropped clothing or litter.  We relied on instincts and the “what would I do” mentality getting into the mindset of the lost hiker.  I can say as a K9 handler I located more people because of a basic whistle than any other means of signaling.  A close second would be a campfire (not necessarily a signal fire).

Preplanning by you is the key to changing a potentially fatal event into just an inconvenience.  Follow these simple steps to be at your best when things are at their worst.

  1. Familiarize yourself with the area by map, and research.  Pay attention to key terrain features such as a mountain peak or waterway. Also know where there are open areas to signal from or be seen by aircraft.
  2. Once you have decided the location let someone not going on the trip know your plans.  An email with an itinerary and map you are following is a good start.  Mark where you parked and route through the are you will be taking with campsites listed along the way.
  3. Take a few small items with you that can help if you are in need of rescue.  A whistle, Signal mirror, and flashlight, can all help signal long distances with minimal effort and can be operated if injured.
  4. Orange trail marker tape can be used in small sections to tie onto tree branches to mark paths of travel.
  5. Solar blankets are light weight and can also be used for trail marking, signaling, and help keep you warm through the night.

All of these items can fit into a sandwich size bag and add little weight to your daypack but will be worth its weight in gold if you ever need it.  Check out or other simple steps article for great tips and ideas before your next trip off the beaten path.

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Stylish Boots for Memphis in May

Memphis in May is here and Bass Pro Shops Memphis is known for helping get everyone ready for  the crazy rainy weather and all the mud it brings! For ladies we have our knee high Natural Reflections rubber boots in green, red, navy, and black all just $39.99! Not to worry if solid colors aren’t your style we also have the Natural Reflections boots in classic camouflage and pink camouflage! Guys, we didn’t forget about y’all, we have our ProLine black and red rubber boots for $39.99 and the RedHead hardwoods green 17” Utility boot for just $49.99! For kids we have the Tyler boots in navy with a pink strap or solid red for $29.99 and the ProLine black and red boot for $34.99.

These boots are also perfect for ladies doing rainy day chores from looking stylish while running errands to even walking across campus to get to class! For the guys they are perfect to wear while getting the spring cleaning list done, to wear turkey hunting, hiking, and even yard work! They are great for kids to wear to school, while playing in the yard or jumping in mud puddles!

While you’re here, you may want to also check out our Redhead Lifetime that would be a great purchase with the boots when the weather decides it’s not quite ready for spring yet and drops back down into winter temperatures!

 

 

 

         

     

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Graduation Gift Ideas

Graduation is fast approaching for high school seniors and college grads! Of course, money is always the quick and easy way to get a graduation gift crossed off that list of invitations and announcements. However, we asked Associate Terrence Ross, graduating this month from Grand View University, for his tips and thoughts on what a graduate might like OR what a graduate may want to consider buying with all that gift money!

Bass Pro Shops Altoona graduation gift ideas1. Coffee mugs - Whether headed off to college or headed out to the "real world," a mug is important not just for coffee, but for hot chocolate, soup, ramen noodles, and other staples of living on a budget!

2. Water bottles - Whether hiking across campus, across the city to your new job, or up a mountain trail on vacation, a water bottle is a must have.

3. Living Quarters - Bedding, bath, towels, a lamp, and rugs. Terrence knows that a dorm room, or that first apartment, can be pretty "blah" until you put your own touch to it. If you're an outdoorsy person, consider an outdoor touch with Browning or camo bedding, towels, and even a rug. Needing to deck out a new bathroom? We have shower curtains and other bathroom accessories, too.  Terrence reminds everyone that a dorm room or apartment needs to not just look good, but should SMELL good, too...not like dirty socks. Bass Pro Shops has scent warmers to do the trick. Remember, check your college residence hall rooms regarding candle usage...many don't allow, due to fire hazards, but if they do, then we have those, too!Backpacks - graduation gift ideas - Bass Pro Shops Altoona

4.  Towels - From bath to beach, don't forget the towels!

5.  Gear - Let's face it, not all treks across campus are going to be under sunny, blue skies and 70 degrees. Make sure you have good rain gear, like a hooded, waterproof jacket, and an umbrella. Don't forget good shoes, boots, and, of course, some comfy casuals.

You'll need a good quality backpack for your books and electronics, too. While you're at it, invest in a good (or new) laptop or iPad case, and waterproof protection for your smart or iPhone, like the Otterbox line.

6. Emergency supplies - Terrence says a couple of things often overlooked are emergency items, like a good flashlight and batteries. Well, actually, he said the batteries were for the XBox controls, but admitted they would be handy in power Graduation Gift - Slow cookeroutages, too. He had several opportunities to experience power outages during storms and was glad he had the light source! Snacks come in handy during emergencies, too.

7.  Cooking - Terrence likes the slow cooker as a gift idea. Honestly, I think that would be REALLY handy in a residence hall! Beats the little "hot pot" of my college days. Plus, there are many soups and chil fixings that you can get to throw in the slow cooker. Don't forget the snacks! Stock up on jerky and nuts for munching and also for those emergency, non-electric times.

Bass Pro Shops Outdoor games7.  Last, but not least, it's not all work and studying. Take time to play and pick up some outdoor games (some would work fine in a dorm hallway, too!) for study breaks and tailgating!

The list can go on and on when it comes to setting up a new apartment or dorm room. Just remember, comfort is key and you never know WHAT you might find at Bass Pro Shops that will fit your needs...just ask Terrence.

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Dance in the Rain!

taylor

Why spend the rainy day inside when you can be outside? Well most of us simply do not like wet feet.  Never fear, the Natural Reflections Taylor makes it so you can jump in puddles, go to work or class, dance in the rain, walk the dogs, go grab the mail, or just run your everyday errands. 

The Taylor is offered in four colors; green, black, red, or blue and comes in sizes 6 through 10. These boots allow you to dress them up as well as dress them down, rain boots are a fashion statement these days.  I personally wear my rain boots with everything from cute little sundresses to meet my husband for lunch, with yoga pants to run daily errands, with my pajama shorts in the morning to take my puppy dogs outside, throw on with my work pants to get inside work, or anywhere pretty I go. 

Not only are they fashionable but they are designed to work; non-skid rubber outsole, cushiony EVA insole, and a glossy rubber upper with a comfortable cotton lining.

Don't forget the little ones, we also offer the Natural Reflections Tyler for children from sizes 9 to 3. Its offered in two awesome colors; red or navy with a pink buckle accent, making your little one the coolest kid on the playground.

So swing into your local Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World and let one of our awesome team of footwear associates help keep your feet dry, and remember Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, its about learning to dance in the rain.   

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Red Head Rancher II Wellington boots will be going on sale at $79.97 compared to $129.99

The Rancher II Wellington boot is a durable pull on work boot with BONE DRY waterproof technology inside. The Rancher II work boot from Red Head ensures you will look great while working hard.

Premium waterproof full grain leather uppers feature BONE DRY waterproof breathable technology and moisture wicking linings to give you a boot made for a full day of work. Built tough, the Rancher II delivers long lasting strength and durability with its Goodyear welt construction.

Great for work on the farm or ranch, this boot cushions and absorbs impact forces from every step with breathable footbeds and shock absorbing, slip and oil resistant rubber outsoles.

The Rancher II is also non-insulated which works out great on those long sunny days. Average weight per pair is 3.2 lbs. and average height is 12". Drop by the footwear department today to check out these great boots. Bass Pro Shops, your adventure starts here.

http://www.basspro.com/RedHead-Rancher-II-12-Waterproof-Work-Boot-for-Men-Brown/product/130815073654132/.

James Langham

 

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The Perfect Boots for the Spring Hunt

The spring hunting season is one of the most fun, especially for young hunters. But having improper footwear can quickly turn a fun trip into a nightmare with blisters, wet feet, or cold toes. While this seems like a challenge there are some simple things to look for in order to find an excellent pair of boots for the spring hunt.

A good thing to look for in a boot is GORE-TEX. This material is used to keep water from flowing through the boot when stepping in a puddle. GORE-TEX also helps keep the natural warmth from a person’s feet in the shoe making this great for an early spring, cold weather boot. A good boot that works well as a spring hunting boot is the Danner® Pronghorn™ 8'' GORE-TEX® Waterproof 800 Gram Thinsulate™ Insulated Hunting Boots. These boots are also great for hunting because of a rugged stable sole on the boot makes it great for any terrain.

Danner

Another material that a hunter should look for in a good spring boot is thinsulate. This material is a light weight insulator and helps keep feet warm in some of the most adverse conditions. For this reason it can be worn in many different seasons in order to get the most out of a pair of boots. A great boot that uses this material is the Irish Setter® Grizzly Tracker Waterproof 1000 Gram Thinsulate™ Insulated Hunting Boots. This boot is great for any weather and any temperature, keeping any hunters feet from getting wet while at the same time keeping them warm, even while standing still.

 Irish Setter

A boot that the ladies can wear comfortably during the spring is the SHE® Outdoor Cami 9'' High Insulated Waterproof Hunting Hikers for Ladies. This boot has 600 grams of Thinsulate making them some of the warmest boots on the market.

SHE

The next thing to look for in a boot is not a material but a type of boot, warm rubber hunting boots. These are doubly helpful because they are completely waterproof and are also specifically designed for wet conditions in the early to mid-spring where the conditions are not the best. A great boot for the hunter needing completely waterproof boots is The Original Muck Boot Company® Woody Max™ Hunting Boot. These boots are lightly insulated so they can keep feet warm while at the same time giving the waterproofing needed to cross streams and walk through the snow without freezing.

Muck

Another great boot for this job is the RedHead® Span Tough 16'' Waterproof Rubber Boots for Ladies or Youth, this tough boot is great for all types of weather and can definitely take a beating from just about anyone.

RH

A type of boot that is needed later in the spring season is a snake boot. When the weather starts to warm the likelihood of snakes being out and about increases and it is always good to be prepared for the possibility that a snake might try and take a bite out of a hunter’s foot. These boots are often times made of a hardened rubber and neoprene in order to keep snake bites from penetrating and keeping their wearers safe. A boot that works well in this respect is the LaCrosse® Alpha Mudlite 18'' Waterproof Snake Boots. Not only are they great for snakes but the boots are also insulated and great for cold weather hunting.

LaCrosse

A great snake boot for the ladies is the RedHead® Bone-Dry® 13'' Bayou Zip Waterproof Snake Boots . This boot is not only warm but also keeps feet dry on a hike or a long morning hunt in the dew.

RH

The final type of boot many hunters are going to be looking for is a good lightweight warmer weather boot. These boots are usually more geared towards hunters that will be walking a lot during their hunt. This is probably best for hunters who want to stalk their turkeys or early season deer. A boot for the ladies who like to stalk their prey is the RedHead® Trekker III Non-Insulated Waterproof 7'' Hunting Boots for Ladies. This boot combines light weight material with the comfort of a hiking boot so a hunter feels comfortable all day.

RH Ladies

A boot for the guys is the Danner® Jackal™ II GTX 7'' Non-Insulated Waterproof Hunting Boots. These boots are lighter and don’t come as far up the calf making them great for distance walking while on the hunt.

Danner

The spring hunt is one of the most fun times of the year to be out in the wilderness. While at the same time a spring hunt has the ability to have very poor weather on any given day and then perfect weather on the next. So being prepared when it comes to boots is always an easy way to turn around a day on the hunt. As always happy hunting and good luck! 

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Special Buy: Teva Gannet Mid Hiker Boots

Whenever I'm out hiking trails or I'm busy working on rough terrain for hours at a time, it is extremely important that I have footwear that's going to keep my feet comfortable--while I'm out in the field or walking through the various state parks Florida has to offer. I remember times when I would leave work and once I got home and took my shoes off, I would have pain running through my feet, up my ankles and into my shins.
 

After trying on a pair of these boots for my eight hour shift on flat pavement, my feet felt like they were sitting on pillows all day. There was absolutely no pain in my feet and the difference was night-and-day. Right now during our Spring Fishing Sale, we have Teva Gannet Mid Hiker Boots that are 100% waterproof and offer more ankle support so you can stay on your feet longer.They are built with impact resistant ShocPads in the heels that reduce the impact of rough trails and keep the strain off of your feet.

 

This $89.99 value is a special buy during the Spring Fishing Sale for $39.97

 

Teva Mid Hiker Boot

 

  

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Spring Footwear Buying Tips

Spring on the calendar means warmer weather is approaching...time to update your footwear for warm weather!

Footwear Lead Miranda Atchison has some helpful tips for buying your lightweight footwear for land and water:Muck Boots

All-Purpose Shoe/Boot - From taking the dog for a walk during or after a rainshower to working in the garden, a waterproof all-purpose shoe or boot is a handy thing to have for the spring. Mucks and Bogs are popular. They are easy to just slip on and take off, and they get dirty so you don’t have to be...and Miranda says her Bogs are tops on her list!

"I have a pair of Bogs that I use when taking the dogs out at muddier times. They are probably one of the most handy in my personal footwear arsenal. I couldn't live without them!"

Hiking Shoes/Boots - Shopping for hiking footwear can be tricky. Start with thinking about where you would be using the shoe or boot and shop accordingly. Waterproofing? A deep-lugged sole for better traction? Heavy duty or lightweight upper? Additionally, think about the break-in time you need...every pair needs break-in.

Lightly Insulated Hunting Shoes/Boots - A waterproof and lightly-insulated shoe or boot for hunting in the spring is a good investment. Non-insulated or up to 600 grams of insulation is a good spring comfort range.

Water Shoes - A water shoe with sturdy protection will be safer for those days spent in or around summer waters. As your Adidas Water shoesfeet are in water for a while, and skin is softened, they are more susceptible to injuries than they normally would be when dry. Look for a pair of water shoes that allow the water to drain easily and that have a nice, slip-resistant outsole. Fast drying materials in a water shoe are important to look for when shopping, too.

Socks - There are socks for many different activities and using the right type will make all the difference. Hiking? Grab a good mid-weight hiker like the RedHead Merino or the RedHead Ultra-Silver socks. For good all-purpose work socks, check out the new RedHead Lifetime Guarantee Midweight socks.

Overall, comfort is a must. If it’s not comfortable when you first put it on you should move on and try a different pair.

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Did You Remember To Pack The.....?

Go ahead and fill in the blank with any fishing, hunting, camping, or travel related item and I’ll bet we can come up with a couple thousand miscellaneous things we wish we wouldn’t have left on the kitchen counter, on the garage floor, or hanging in the closet.

I long ago adopted the mentality that I wouldn’t be the knucklehead wishing he hadn’t forgotten his boots like Stan in “The Deer Hunter,” and thankfully (knock on wood), I haven’t been that guy very many times.  Michael (played by the inimitable Robert De Niro) gave Stan one heck of a tongue lashing because it seems to have been a habit for him.  “Plan Carefully…..Execute Violently” is one of my favorite sayings and it applies pretty well to making trips or outings where resupply is difficult if not impossible.

My solution has always been to pack in phases and have staging areas for all the gear where I can take stock of the equipment to ensure that everything is accounted for.  And this has worked pretty well for the time being but it has gotten more difficult as my wife and I include more and more gear for each trip.  About the only problem we’ve ever encountered with my packing is the unwavering desire to pack more than necessary, which results in mountains of equipment in every corner of the house for about two weeks leading up to the outing.  There has to be a better answer.

Creating a list on the computer that’s flexible enough to be modified as necessary seems to be the way to go for our trips, and so far it seems to be working fairly well.  My wife has created a series of spreadsheets listing the equipment we plan on taking and she’ll print the list, then check off each item as it’s added to the staging piles.  Simple, smart, and efficient if you ask me.  We’ve even gotten to the point of dedicating storage containers and shelf space to the gear related to a specific activity.  It sure limits the need to search the entire house for a sleeping bag, hiking staff, or flats booties when you know right where they should be.  It also makes it easier to determine when gear needs to be replenished or replaced.

So, take it from a obsessive planner and over packer…  Make a list of things you need to gather for your next trip.  It may seem like a “no-brainer,” but how many of us actually follow our own advice?  Now if I could only make a list of flies to take instead of just taking all of them…

Brian “Beastman” Eastman

White River Fly Shop

Outdoor World Orlando

 

 

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