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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

October 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

We are set for our State Youth Hunt and Show, which will be held at the Jefferson County Fair Grounds in Valley Falls Ks, on October 17th. There will be a state meeting as well at 1:00 PM, hope you and yours can attend this event.

This year has been a trying year for us all. I have hunted less in 2020 than in any time since I started competition hunting. There are times when I ask myself how much longer can I keep doing the hunts. Pleasure hunting is one thing but when you enter a competition hunt you want to be able to keep up and not slow the cast down to a halt. This seems to be getting worse for me. It’s not the other guys in the cast that I am in, as they have all been very helpful but it is me. I seem to be falling down more and more, it’s not the falling down that is the problem but the getting up. I am 71 now and as I get older this is only going to get worse. Soon or later I will fall and break an arm, leg or hip. Then what will the cast do?

I am going to try some of the one-hour hunts in my area and see if that helps. Also, it is time that I get back into some type of long walking condition. I’m not ready to throw in the towel just yet but when it’s difficult to get around and your hounds hunts like a plug, it gets really discouraging. This is my problem and mine alone and I intend to try and fix it but I felt it was something many others of you might be experiencing and would like to know that you are not along.

The Kansas Wildlife Commissioners did pass the proposal of using night optics for coyote hunting, by a vote of 5-2. It has not been made law yet but it seems to be on its way. You may want to talk to one of your representatives an express your views on this matter on way or the other. I see no way that there isn’t going to be problems with two different types of hunters in the field at night, with one group using high powered rifles and night optics. Please call us with your views.

With the coming of October here, we are in my favorite time of the year, fall. Hunting should get better as the bugs will be gone and cooler weather will always help. I hope you get out and enjoy it, as I plan to and hopefully, I will not fall down as much.

Until next month, keep your powder dry, your eyes in the top of the trees and may your hounds be fleet and have the meat.

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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

September 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

Our State meeting that was to be in April, was rescheduled for July 19th, was held with 24 members present. This was a very positive and successful meeting. Our new officers are, President: Cassey Kirkham, Vice President: Brian Gerhardt, Secretary/Treasurer: Terry L. Porter, State Reporter: Terry L. Porter, Social Media: Tom Anderson, Board of Directors: Skyler Mick, David Patterson, and Jerald Parker, Pratt Negotiator Kin Hickman with Bruce Anderson helping when needed. Anyone can attend the wildlife meeting if they want. Let’s get behind these new officers with our support to help make this great organization even better, for the betterment of all hunting dogs.

The biggest concern facing this organization at this point is the wildlife department considering the use of night vision optics for coyote hunters while coon hunters are in the woods as well. This seems like a deadly accident waiting to happen. Please send me your comments on this issue or talk to one of the other officers. This is going to be a challenge for us and we need your input.

Our State Youth Hunt and Show will be held October 17th at the Jefferson County Fair Grounds in Valley Falls Kansas and will be hosted by the NE Kansas Coon Hunters. We decreased the budget for this hunt from $2500 to $500- $750 which is the same as the adult hunt. These changes are due to a lack of numbers and a decrease in our general fund. If you want to donate to the youth hunt, contact one of the officers.

Of course, the youth hunt could change if the virus gets worse as is projected but we will have to cross that bridge as time get closer. Watch our website for update and look for our ad in this month’s issue of CBL.

Until next month, keep your powder dry your eyes in the top of the trees and may your hounds be fleet and have the meat.

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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

August 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

As I write this article, I’m setting the kitchen of my youngest son and his family in Dillion, Montana, where there is very little humidity and even if the temperature is in the 90’s it is still very comfortable. I know in Kansas this time of year; it can get very moist. I have several items to discuss this month, so we better get going.

Every article that I write in August, is dedicated to Preston Luft, who lost his life in a hunt in 2012 at a hunt in La Grande, Iowa. He was left in the woods that night because everyone in his cast thought he had already gone home, when in fact he was still looking for his hound. Every, since that night, I have driven home the fact of not leaving any hunter behind. So please keep this in mind when you go out on your next hunt.

Look on our website for the minutes of our July meeting as well as the list of our new officers. Decisions of the youth hunt and future events will be discussed as well.

The coon hunting world has lost another fine man, Joe Hermsmeier passed away June 19th. According to his sister, he was either at or going to his favorite fishing hole. As I told her, we all can only be so lucky, as he died with his boots on. Joe was one of my favorite MOH’s, he was always very jolly and personable and tried to make you feel at home.

When we lose men like Terry Baker and Joe, I think of the song, “Who’s going to fill their shoe’s” as both of these fine men made the sport better for us all. All of us need to step up and make this happen and continue their fine work of being fair and honest.

With the loss of these men, it leaves you with a very empty feeling, but I know both of these men would not want us to feel this way. Life continues and if this sport is to continue, we must all honor these men by doing all we can to make the sport better.

Until next month, keep your powder dry, your eyes in the top of the trees and may you hounds be fleet and have the meat.

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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

July 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

I hope with the coming of July that the situation here in Kansas will open up due to the virus, and we will be able to have our state meeting. At the time that I am writing this article, we are still on hold. As time goes by, keeping watching our website at kansasfederationofhoundsmen.org as the meeting will be announced there as well as on hunting sites and face book.

Due to a variety of reasons, I have hunted less this year than any other time since I started hunting. To make things worse, I am now without my Garmin, I’m not sure but I think my “walk” in the swamp that I talked about last month had something to do with it. I had to send it in and now I’m waiting for it to return. I hope to get back into action when it does return. As I talked about last year, I do have some goals for this year as well. I’d like to get Sammy qualified for the World hunt, get her five wins so we are qualified for the UKC Tournament of Campions and after discussing the Youth World Hunt with my Granddaughter, we are thinking about going to West Virginia. So, with all of these goals it’s time to get in gear.

If you have any questions about our state meeting or anything else about the Kansas Federation, feel free to call me anytime. With all that is happing in our world, having our state meeting seems small however, life does continue and so does the Kansas Federation.

Until next month, keep your powder dry, your eyes in the top of the trees and may your hounds be fleet and have the meat.

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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

June 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

I’m sure many of you feel as I do; what has happened? Our lives have been turned upside down with all that is happening with our country. I hope all of you and your love ones are virus free and stay that way. I have no answers for anyone on this matter as my own attitude changes with each passing day. As you know already, we had to cancel the Kansas Hunt and Show due to the numbers put forth by our state government. We will have it if the numbers are brought back to some kind of normal, however we are on a wait and see.

If the number of people being at an event is increased, we will first hold a meeting and at that meeting we will be decided what we are going to do for the remainder of 2020. As time passes contact me or one of our board members for further information, also it will be posted on our web-site at kansasfedrationofhoundsmen.org and on many face books sites. Until that time, we will just have to hold tight and see what happens.

We had four students write essays for our $500 scholarship and the unanimous winner being Wyatt Reyer of Chase County High School. Wyatt is the son of Kim and Lana Reyer of Cottonwood Falls. Wyatt was the first choice of the family, the board members and the Wildlife Department. You can read Wyatt’s essay on our website. Thanks, you to all students who turned in essays and congratulations to our winner Wyatt.

I enjoy telling stories as you readers well know and I have a dandy for you this month. It was late March are early April on a very cool evening with rain and sleet forecasted for later in the evening. I hunted west of Valley Falls in an area that you couldn’t hunt in 2019 due to flooding and very high water. I had checked the area out earlier in the day and felt it was safe for me and my dog. I let my hound loose about 8:30 and she opened almost immediately, ran a very hot track for about 700 yards and came treed north east of where I had turned loose. I walked down an access road and then turned north and started walking to her. I was surprised at how the flood water had cleaned the area up and the walking was great. I had to cross two small creeks that had what I term as “quick mud” which was left over from all of the high water a year ago. This mud looks dry but when you get into it you sink up to your boot tops and beyond. I wallowed through these two and found Sammy treed on the second creek bank with the coon. After rewarding her for her efforts, I decided that we were not going to go back the same way due to the “quick mud” issue. So, Sammy I started walking west back towards the truck. No big problem if you have marked your truck but I had failed to do that but figured if I walked southwest, I would end up back on the access road that I started on. What I also, failed to take into concertation that there were duck marshes in this area as well, and I found myself in them. To make matters worse if that was possible at this point, beavers had done their jobs very well. I crossed a small creek that was over my waders, now, I’m soaked from the waist down and the rain and sleet has started. I continued to walk and was bound that I was going to get myself out of this mess.

I wonder around for a while and saw footprints in the mud, and I told Sammy, “we are not alone” however after going around the same beaver chewed on tree the second time and looking at my Garmin I realized that we were walking in circles and that I was completely lost. It was now about 10:30 with the rain and sleet coming down harder, I had one bar on my cell phone so I called my oldest son. He answered and through several phone calls and texting, they got to where my pickup was parked. I told them to honk their horn and maybe I could get orientated again but that did not help. So, he started walking towards me after what seemed like forever, I saw his light, what a relief I was found! Not just yet, I crossed another marsh trying to get closer to his light and ended in chest deep water. Sammy did not like the swimming exercises that we were doing and was really pulling trying to get to the bank asap which made walking in water and wondering if I was going to step off in a hole even more difficult. We made to the other side and now Tyler (my oldest son) was in sight as I walked closer to him, I could see his face. “Dad I hate to tell you this but you are going to have to walk across this marsh to get to me”. After a very lively discussion I realized he was right and this water was going to be deeper than what I had already crossed. We started towards him which was a least 30 yards if not more in front of us, with several logs floating, when Sammy got to them, she would grab them like a cat and hang on which made me have to drag her off of them. After dealing with two of them I turned her loose and let he swim to him. Now walking was easier but the water was getting deeper, and I was fearful of stepping off into a deeper hole, by the time I got to Tyler I was in water up to my lips, I don’t think I have ever been that scared in my life. During my wet walk out, Tyler said “Dad if you go under, just swim out.” I said “Tyler, with all of my wet clothes and my boots full, I bet I weighed 500 lbs.”

I did make it out, and when we finally got to the road, we were over ¼ mile north of where I had parked my pickup. I was very grateful for Tyler and his family coming to rescue me. I was very embarrassed about getting lost and having to have help to find my way out. After talking to my friend Gary Wentz in Fall City, Nebraska he informed me that when you get in water with trees all around, it is very easy to get lost even with a Garmin. I know when Tyler and I hunted in the last Winter Classic held in Albany Georgia, our guide told Tyler to stay at the edge of a swamp as we walked in with water up to the top of our waders because it was very easy to get turned around in swamps. Even though I got lost in Valley Falls, Kansas, I was in a swamp like atmosphere.

I did survive and really wish I had just walked back to same way a came in, wished I had marked my truck and I am very proud that I have a family that cares enough for me that they were willing to help me out. Sammy does not mind water as much now after her swimming adventure and if you come to NE Kansas to hunt with me you might think about bring your swim suit. When I arrived back at my house it was 1:30! A very scary night with many lessons learned even for an old man and I’m very happy to still be alive and to keep on hunting.

Until next month keep your power dry, your eyes in the top of the trees and may your hounds be fleet and have the meat.

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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

May 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

As you read this article the Federations State Hunt and Show will be over. I have posted results of the election and winners of the hunts and shows on our website as well as the minutes of our meeting as soon as I could after the event. If you have questions feel free to contact me.

When I coached, I prided myself on conditioning, discipline, fundamentals and respect for our opponent and the game itself. When you combine all of these together you come up honor. Honor for your team and coaching staff, the game but mainly honor for yourself. I drove this home to every team that I coached.

When we took the field, we did so with pride, we didn’t always win but when we left the field in defeat, we could hold our heads high that we had given it our all. I had a coach tell me once, “Porter your teams always come to play”. I took this and made it our team motto: “we come to play every day”!!!!

Honor is something that I feel is lacking in our sport of competition coon hunting. The win at any cost attitude seems to rule the day many times. I have been very fortunate not to have been in many cast’s where this happens but when it does, it really puts a sour taste in your mouth on the sport and the people involved in it. We have to have honor in ourselves, our hounds and the sport. Why cheat to gain a win? What have you really done, are you proud of the win and your hound? I want to be able to stand in front of the mirror the next morning and feel good about my hound and how I handled her.

I feel each of us have the responsibility to hold all hunters to a high standard of honor. If we all do this, our sport will improve as will the numbers at each of the hunts and then we can all leave the field with our heads held high. The sport of competition coon hunting will be better for it. We have but one life to live on this earth let’s live it with honor.

Until next month: keep your powder dry, your eyes in the tops of the trees and may your hounds be fleet and have the meat.

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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

April 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

The State Hunt and Show is ready for you, hope to see you at this year’s event. Very important state meeting will be held 2:00 PM of Saturday April 11th, plan to make this one as well.

Spring is approaching fast and hunting is good. With the new rules and format of UKC hunts, it will be exciting to see if the numbers at hunts pick up. Time will tell. I have not as yet been in involved with a UKC hunt at this time but I have talked with hunters who have and they feel the pace is much faster.

Speaking of pace, a cast should go no faster than their weakest or slowest member. In 99% of the casts that I’m in, that person is me. I can get along fine on open ground but I do have problems at ditches and creeks, I can get down but I do need help once in a while get up out of these. Most do asset me and do so willingly. The one thing that really irritates me is when cast members leave me in the ditch slipping, sliding and crawling out by myself only to find the rest of the cast 200 yds or more away from me. I then have to really hoof it to catch up, find them stopped waiting on me as I come in huffing and puffing only to have them take off again once I arrive. At this point I generally have to point out to give me a break however doing this make me feel like I am a lesser member of the cast. I have yet to get really mad because once I point this out things generally get better. However, if it would continue, I believe that it is in the rules that I could report this to the MOH and get the cast scratched. I do not want to be that guy more than likely I would just withdraw and go to my truck. This has not happened to me yet, in fact most casts treat me with very high levels of respect, to the point on one cast I told them to stop babying me.

So, the next time you have an “old timer” in your cast keep this in mind. You will become the “old timer” quicker than you think and no one finds it fun to play catch up in a cast.

Hope to see you at the Kansas State Hunt and Show, until then, keep your powder dry, your eyes in the top of the trees and may your hounds be fleet and have the meat.

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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

March 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

Everything is ready for the Federations State Hunt and Show look for our ad in this month’s issue of Coonhound Bloodlines. We are adding a 60-minute warm-up slam hunt on April 9th and then the State Hunt and Show will be held on the 10th and 11th at the Jefferson County Fair Ground in Valley Falls, KS. NE Kansas Coon Hunters will be the host club again this year. The State meeting will be held at 2:00 PM Saturday April 11th. This is an election year so make time to attend or you might be given an office.

Our current President is Bruce Anderson and the Federation wants to offer him and his wife Drouthy condolences for the loss of Bruce’s mother last fall. Our past President Jerry Ponton Jr, lost his father this year also and again we want to pass our condolences on to him and his wife also. Losing a love- one is never easy, even if they have been sick for a long time or the loss is sudden, it still hurts.

I reported last month that my hound Sammy was not hunting well at all due to slick treeing. She hunted so poorly and a Pro Classic in Osage City that I took her to a new vet to see if there was a health issue. It turns out that her thyroid level is low, and meds were prescribed. I gave her three weeks off and started the regiment of medicine, her hunting has improved, and her slicking treeing has stopped to some degree. She has always been a tree happy hound, but this was different. Its good to see her getting back to her old ways. I go into any hunt just wanting to feel like we are competing with the rest of the cast. I try not to have feelings of grandeur; I just don’t want the feeling that I really don’t belong in this or that hunt. Time will tell but hunting her is starting to be fun again and believe me when she is treeing 5-6 slick trees in one night or staying treed on a bush for 90 minutes with nothing in it is not fun.

I do this sport for fun, and I love the competition, if it wasn’t for the competition I doubt if I would own a hound. I do enjoy hunting Sammy when she is right, and our time and memories together will last me a lifetime. I feel she and I both have at least 2 or more good seasons in us, health depending. When she is finished, I believe I will be finished also because if she does last three more years, I will being hugging 75 and anyway you cut this sport it is a young man’s game. Until that times comes Sammy and I will try our best to give you a run for your money.

Hope to see you at the State Hunt and Show, until then, keep your powder dry, your eyes in the top of the trees and may your hounds be fleet and have the meat.

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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

February 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

I first want to apologize for missing the December 2019 article. This is the first article that I have missed since I started writing them. I thought I had turned the article in by the deadline but for some reason I missed it for both the Coon Hound Bloodlines and American Cooner. You can also always go to our website and find my articles there also. I want to thank both Coon Hound Bloodlines and American Cooner for combining both the December and January article into one article in the January magazines. Maybe, if I didn’t wait to the last minute, missing the deadlines wouldn’t happen. I’ve always been a procrastinator and I doubt if that is going to change anytime soon.

I look for inspiration of some kind when I write these articles and tonight, I received that from a song by Andera Gayle titled “Rise up”. If you want to see a very inspirational video go to a computer and put in the artist or the title and you will be very rewarded. Speaking of being rewarded I have not been rewarded lately by the performance of my hound Sammy. After bragging about her and her accomplishments in 2019 she has gone “belly up”, with slick trees being her middle name. I cannot figure this slump out and I hope that is what it is. We will just keep plugging along and see what happens.

Get your calendars marked for April 9th, 10th and 11th, for the Kansas State Hunt and Show. The 9th will be a one-hour warm-up Slam hunt and the 10th and 11th will be two hours hunts with a final four being decided and hunted off on the 11th, watch for our ad in the March Bloodlines.

This is also an election year and there will be positions opened if you are interested, please contact one of the Board members and we will put you in for a position. We need your help!

This should prove to be an interesting year with the changes that have taken place in UKC and the fact that once you win five casts you are in a position to get into the big money hunt coming in 2021. It is our hope that these changes bring more competitors to each hunt. It should prove to be an exciting year of good competition.

Hope to see you down the road, if you have questions or concerns feel free to contact me anytime. Until then, keep your power dry, your eyes in the tops of the trees and may your hounds be fleet and have the meat.

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Monthly Articles - Kansas Federation of Houndsmen - Monthly Articles

January 2020 Article

By Terry L. Porter - State Report

With the coming of a new year, our expectations grow. I hope that 2020 can be as fun and rewarding as 2019. The Federations State Hunt and Show will be April 9, 10 and 11 this year, with a warmup Slam hunt on the 9th. Mark your calendar and make plans to attend. It will be held again this year at Valley Falls, Kansas.

With the coming of a new year I turn 71 on January 14th! This seems unbelievable, no real plans for the future other than to keep on plugging away. I do plan on getting in better physical shape so walking through the woods is not as difficult as it was in 2019. Our youngest son and his family live in Montana and we do plan to go visit them, maybe in March.

For you readers who follow my articles, if you remember back about 2-3 years, I wrote an article about getting a female Walker hound from a Mountain Lion hunter in Idaho, I named her Ida. Ida was a fast and good track dog, but she was not going to make a competition hound. A man from Montana called me who was in Kansas had gotten on our website and got my name and number, as he was looking for a young started hound. To make a long story short I gave him Ida as she was given to me, with the understanding that he would give her a real chance. He and I have talked several times and Ida has turned into a good Bobcat and Lion hound! I also have an open invitation to go hunting with him anytime. This gentleman is about my age and he says that March is the best time to come up and hunt. So, with a little luck that is in our plans.

I also have plans to get my hound qualified for the World Hunt again this year and to go to as many PKC Pro Classics as I can afford. A new year brings with it an exciting challenge for us all when you are 71 you are just happy to still be here and still have a chance to compete. Until next month, keep your powered dry, your eyes in the top of the trees and may your hound be fleet and have the meat.

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