August 4th, 2015

By Jon Wogen, TBC Board member, outdoor enthusiast —  printed with permission from the Renville County Register

Some days I just want to run outside and remind a dog walker about the poor dog’s feet on a hot day. The paved roads can become so hot that the dog gets his paws burned. How fun is that? Sometimes you could fry an egg on a hot pavement.

But, walking your dog is good exercise for the owner and the dog. Just pick a proper time when the roads are cooler—morning or evening.

Another alternative to walking the streets with Fido is to go to one of your town’s parks and let the dog walk the grass. That would feel pretty good compared to hot asphalt. We see quite a few folks walk their dogs at Pond Park in Olivia. A mowed grass path is there, surrounding the whole pond area so you can get in a pretty good walk with the dog there. And, if the weather is hot, a tossed retrieving dummy might wet the dog enough to complete his walk without too much suffering. Swimming really helps to get Fido in shape for fall hunting.

It doesn’t matter if Fido stays on the grass or a paved trail, it is your responsibility to pick up the “dog pile” if it shows up. No one should have to discover your dog’s DooDoo on his or her shoes. No home owner should have to pick up after an irresponsible dog owner failed to do his/her duty.

All dog owners who walk their dogs are not only getting the dog in shape, but are doing a lot to get in good physical condition themselves. But, anyone contemplating a fall hunt should look ahead in preparation for it. Getting in shape now helps a lot to make your hunt more fun. We need to add stretching and strength exercises from now to fall to make sure your strength is there when you need to carry a heavy shotgun through rough country in search of pheasants.

Lifting dumbbells of reasonable weight helps the upper body to get in shape for the hunt. Maybe, if you aren’t at all in good shape, start with light weights like eight or 10 pounds. Move up to 12 or 15 as your strength increases. The same can be said for walking yourself or the dog. Start short, like only a few blocks or a quarter mile or so. Then as things improve, add distance.

Getting ready for fall activities requires some shooting practice also. Those who have a membership in the Renville Rangers Shooting Club (RRSC) have an excellent place to go for practice and for sighting-in a rifle or handgun. The RRSC is located almost a mile and a half north of the stoplights in Bird Island on County Road Five.

The RRSC has covered shooting areas and ranges from 50 feet to 25 yards, to 50 yards and also longer ranges of 100 yards, 150 and 200 yards. If your interests lie in the shotgun sports, the RRSC has both trap and skeet ranges for you to practice getting the gun onto the birds you will see in the field next fall.

There really is no excuse to not get ready for fall activities right now. Start walking, calisthenics, strength training, and practice with your firearm of choice.

If you aren’t a member yet, contact Del Whitman or Jon Wogen in Olivia. They can sign you up with the $30 family membership.


As often happens, the hunters find they are so busy with fishing and other activities and chores that they don’t get out to practice and sight in their firearms until Fall. Often in the Fall the weather goes sour on you when you want to really get that rifle sighted in for a long range shot. Wind, rain, and cold can interfere with your shooting quite a bit. Once sighted in, the cold windy weather might force you to learn to shoot in that nasty weather which you will run into during hunting season.

Yes, there can be bugs to “bug you” during the summer. That is what bug repellent helps with. A nice breeze helps this a lot. Shooting real early or late in the day also mean you may run into more mosquitoes. Mid day is deer fly time. Wear a hat.

Remember now that we told you there are covered ranges at the RRSC. That will stop the hot sun quite a bit and also allows you to shoot if the weather is sprinkly and you want to keep your firearm dry.

All hunters owe it to the game they intend to hunt to be a good shot. We want to make a quick and clean kill of the animal. That is common courtesy and respect for the animal that will provide you with a fine meal.


Getting out and scouting your hunting area will give you an idea of how the reproduction of your prey species went this spring and summer. The waterfowl will be able to fly in a couple of weeks or more and then they will be easier to spot too. Flightless waterfowl tend to hide along banks and in weeds until they can fly again. While scouting, enjoy the native wild flowers and other plants that will still be blooming until well after Labor Day. You may locate new deer trails and new bunches of ducks for your season upcoming.


Today Sven says, “Be someone that makes you happy.”


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