Articles

Examining antler restrictions and CWD

Adventure

Chronic wasting disease continues to spread in Pennsylvania. Hunters are paying the price in many ways. But having to sacrifice the chance at bigger-racked deer won’t be one of them. At least not yet. There’s no evidence – from Pennsylvania or anywhere else — that eliminating antler point restrictions would stop or even slow the […]

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All America Selections are Winners

Garden

One of the joys of Diane Blazek’s job is walking through the All America Selections trial gardens. The AAS executive director was strolling through a field of ornamental peppers when she was struck by ‘Onyx Red.’ “It made me stop and look,” she says. “It was so vibrant, the leaves are so black, and the […]

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Bobcat seasons could see changes in future

Adventure

Hunters and trappers likely won’t see any changes to Pennsylvania bobcat seasons in 2018-19. But after that? Well, that’s less certain. The Pennsylvania Game Commission established a season on bobcats in 2000. It was the first since 1970 and was in response to a bobcat population that was growing numerically and geographically. From that year […]

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Great Backyard Bird Count set to begin

Adventure

Backyard birds may be a sign of spring for some. But in truth? They’re an icon for each and every season. That includes winter. Plenty of bird species – 60 or so, in actuality — live in Pennsylvania year-round or show up only in winter. The list includes everything from northern cardinals and chickadees to […]

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Hook set key to power fishing success

Adventure

There’s little subtle about power fishing for bass. Finesse fishing, in bass terms, involves using light line, small baits and small hooks. It’s a slow technique, too. A finesse fisherman may take hours to work just a bit of cover. But power fishing? Now you’re talking big baits, heavy rods, heavy line and lots of […]

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Outdoor Extras; including a new twist on an old fishing lure

Adventure

Lure of the week Lure name: Aglia Flashabou            Company: Mepps (www.mepps.com) Lure type: Inline spinner Sizes and colors: This comes in no less than six sizes, from 1/12-ounce on up to 1/2–ounce. It also comes in 14 color combinations, from brown trout, copper and hot firetiger to rainbow trout, hot orange and silver. Target species: […]

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A519 Chocolatier brings sweet passion to Pittsburgh

Food

If February stands for anything, it’s love, passion and chocolate. Those three things are also what happened to inspire A519 Chocolate owner, Amanda Wright leave her gig as a research assistant studying adolescent brain development at the University of Pittsburgh to pursue a new career. While Wright enjoyed her previous job, it wasn’t necessarily her […]

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How we used to garden

Garden

When I was given a soft-covered copy of “Henderson’s Garden Guide” from 1913, I couldn’t wait to read it. It was given to me at one of our free gardening symposiums, held twice a year for Seed of the Month Club members. The 7-inch by 4-inch so-called pocket-sized book is filled with fascinating garden information […]

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‘Fresh Tastes’ makes everyday cooking, entertaining uncomplicated

Food

Here’s one way to spot a cookbook you’ll actually use: Short lists of ingredients. And if you can get all of those ingredients at any well-stocked supermarket, chances are good you have yourself a keeper. But don’t be fooled. Easy, common ingredients aren’t an advertisement for simple flavors. They’re just an author doing her due diligence to […]

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Pheasant permit likely to be required of junior hunters

Adventure

This probably won’t be as controversial. Free rarely is. Last year, Pennsylvania Game Commissioners created a $25 pheasant hunting permit and required it of adult hunters – all adult hunters — pursuing agency-stocked pheasants. That included senior lifetime license holders. That caused more than a bit of consternation. Seniors who thought the commission was breaking […]

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Concurrent seasons not among proposed hunting changes

Adventure

The most requested change to hunting seasons for 2018-19 is the one Pennsylvania Game Commissioners aren’t interested in. That’s concurrent deer seasons. Popular opinion is the reason. At the commission’s recent board meeting, a handful of people asked for two weeks of concurrent deer seasons – when both bucks and does are legal — in […]

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Fine tuned supermarket psychology means you’ll spend more per visit

Food

Have you ever gone into the grocery store looking for one or two items and ended up leaving way over budget? You have forces working against you beyond your own cravings. It turns out, supermarkets have plenty of tricks and strategies they use to get the most money out of every consumer visit. According to the Food […]

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A question of holding bass properly

Adventure

It’s a bass angler’s tangible sign of success, the thumb roughed up from holding lots of fish by their sandpapery lip. Is it also evidence of a problem? Lots of fishermen are thinking of bass right now, to judge things based on activity at sport shows. The Hawg Tank at the Great American Outdoor Show […]

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Joy of winter camping hinges on sleeping well

Adventure

To the uninitiated, winter camping is not something to be enjoyed but endured, a Jack London-esque exercise in survival against harsh odds. How wrong they are. To pitch a tent in the coldest months, be it in a typical campground – if you can find one that’s open – or a backcountry forest is to […]

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Outdoor Extras; including campfire recipe

Adventure

Gear of the week Gear name: ChitoSAM Company: Sawyer Products (find it here) Gear type: Bandage Product description: Do you spend time on the shooting range? Or hiking, paddling or otherwise exploring backcountry, far from help? If so, the ChitoSAM is something you should have in your pack. It’s essentially a clotting sponge. Should you […]

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Kale, butternut squash salad with almonds

Food

This filling, savory salad is just what you need to stick to your healthy diet. It’s loaded with flavor, but also packs a punch with tons of heart-healthy kale. One cup of kale contains contains a mere 33 calories, but 206 percent of your daily recommend vitamin A (healthy hair and skin), 134 percent of […]

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SLOW-COOKER MEXICAN TURKEY CHILI

Food

If you’re trying to eat healthy in the winter, you definitely have some hurdles. The cold weather surely calls you to chow down more on mashed potatoes and pasta than on a side salad and sparkling water. And even if you want salad, just try finding a healthy-looking, flavorful tomato this time of year. Sure, there […]

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Stopping deer in the garden

Garden

While driving to work, Keith S. Kaiser hit a deer — again. It’s the third one in the past 14 months he’s encountered with his vehicle, so it might not have been the best day to interview him about dealing with the four-legged pests in the garden. “It’s worse than it’s ever been,” says the […]

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Top 10 Favorite deer resistant plants

Garden

Every herd eats differently, so that’s what makes planting things an experiment. Ask neighbors what isn’t being eaten by the deer and see how it does in your garden. Just because they don’t eat it in their garden doesn’t meant they won’t eat it in yours. Salvia- Both annual and perennial varieties Lamb Ears- Deer […]

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Stocking list full of hidden gems

Adventure

The “great white fleet,” as it’s called, isn’t rolling yet. But it will be soon. And details on just where are out. The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission released its 2018 adult trout stocking schedule. It breaks down, by county, the streams and lakes that will be getting fish via the fleet, its caravan of […]

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Tree stand safety proposal tabled for now

Adventure

It ain’t over yet. Pennsylvania Game Commissioners tabled a proposal requiring hunters using tree stands on state game lands to wear “a full-body safety harness and tether system capable of supporting their weight during a fall”. The harness and tether system would be required from the time that person leaves the ground until he or […]

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Outdoor Extras; including a salmon recipe

Adventure

Lure of the week Lure name: Rainbow Smelt Company: Live Target Lures (www.livetargetlures.com) Lure type: Jerkbait Sizes and colors: This comes in three sizes: 2 ¾ inches and 1/8-ounce, 3 5/8 inches and 5/16 ounces, and 4 ½ inches and 5/8 ounces. Three colors are available, silver/blue, silver/black and gold/black. Target species: Largemouth, smallmouth and […]

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Sunday hunting battle takes on new look

Adventure

The fight to legalize hunting on Sundays in Pennsylvania is taking on a new form. It’s not one everyone supports. The grassroots group Hunters United for Sunday Hunting initially formed more than a year ago. Its goal was to convince lawmakers to remove the “blue law” prohibiting hunting on Sundays. That would not mandate hunting […]

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Wild areas offer quiet beauty

Adventure

There were no minivans perched on two wheels this time. I took that as a good sign. It’s somewhere between two and a half and three miles from the last paved road to the parking area of this particular state forest wild area (I’m not going to say which one; occasional solitude has its benefits). […]

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Winter perfect for studying animal tracks

Adventure

Winter can’t keep a secret. That was clear as we walked the length of the shooting range. Halfway to the backstop, our footprints in the snow crossed over those of a white-tailed deer. It had walked right to left, in a straight line and at a steady pace, all business. A little further on, we […]

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Scarlet Fire Kousa Introduction

Garden

I bumped into an old friend on the exhibit floor at the Mid Atlantic Nursery Trade Show in Baltimore and, as we exchanged pleasantries, he recognized renowned plant breeder Thomas Molnar, which stopped him in mid-sentence. “You’ve got to meet him,” my friend said excitedly. “He’s doing amazing things at Rutgers.” He led me over […]

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