Michael Pearce

The Eagle's outdoor reporter highlights the latest hunting, fishing and wildlife news.

Michael Pearce

Can’t miss waterfowl recipes to be demonstrated at Cabela’s

By Michael Pearce

mpearce@wichitaeagle.com

September 29, 2016 12:45 PM

Saturday, at noon, I’ll try to dispel the myths that waterfowl is always “strong and gamey” on the table. I’ll be demonstrating two different recipes from our Taste of the Kansas Outdoors Cookbook at Cabela’s.

“Peace Creek Duck” is one of the recipes, and takes only a few minutes to prepare and a few minutes to cook. It’s kind of like a stir-fry, but the duck has been soaked in a very common liquid that leaves the meat sweet and tender. At one time a friend and I had served the recipe to 81 people who swore they didn’t like to eat duck. All but one changed their mind. The exception admitted he had a mental block

The other recipe is a modification of “Grilled Mesquite Goose with Lime and Veggies Inside.” During that demonstration I’ll show people how to marinate the meat of large geese from the inside, out. Rather than grilling the meat, I’ll use a very simple and economical smoker. It’s probably Kathy’s favorite meal and most who try it say it reminds them of quality beef.

Yes, samples will be provided. I’ll be around to talk about wild game cooking, or about anything in the Kansas outdoors. I can also sign copies of the cookbook, which Cabela’s will be selling.

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Waterfowl hunting seminars will will be held between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m too.

Other updates

A lot of people are commenting that they’ve never seen a summer, and early fall, as good as this year’s. Vegetation out in the wild lands is still thick, green and tall. That’s happened before, but few can remember when it’s been across the entire state. We’ve had some nice, wet summers around Wichita when southwest Kansas stayed pitifully dry. This year things look good about everywhere in Kansas

Harvest is on-going in most parts of Kansas. Yields are generally great. Prices are poor. If things continue at this rate most of the grain should be removed from the fields when pheasant and quail seasons open Nov. 12. Pheasants, especially, like to spend time in unharvested milo fields. Even if hunters can get the landowner’s permission to walk those fields, getting the birds to flush is usually pretty tough.

Sorry, not many fishing reports but a few people have been doing well on wipers at several area reservoirs. People fishing smaller lakes and ponds say bass are feeding up for fall, which can be some pretty good action.

Upcoming coverage

Today’s Wichita Eagle has an article about a local 22 year old who just completed hiking the 2,190 mile Appalachian Trail. The real story, though, is that Josh Gribble said God told him to make the hike through Gribble’s favorite Dr. Seuss quote. He explains it all in the story, and tells what he learned while on the trek.

Sunday’s Outdoors page will be about two buddies from south-central Kansas who found themselves unemployed in the Colorado Rocky Mountains when they were 26, back in 1983. The tiny fly shop they started in a basement in Durango has grown to become one of the most highly respected fly fishing shops in the state. I spent some time with Tom Flick and Tom Knopick while on vacation last week in Colorado. Interesting story.

We’re still waiting to run a feature on how the Red Hills west of Medicine Lodge have recovered from the huge Anderson Creek Fire back in late March.

Also in the works is a story about a special 400 acre property that’s about to be opened to the public. The terrain is a lot like the chalk pyramids in Gove County, but with a lot more rocks. I’ve been in similar terrain at a friend’s ranch. It’s not what comes to most minds when someone is thinking of Kansas.

There may also be a story about a Butler County woman who claims her horse was attacked by a mountain lion last weekend. Biologist in Kansas and other states say it’s not very likely.

I’m also gathering material for a story on five great fall drives, which will include trips to the Red Hills, Flint Hills, Chautauqua Hills, Waterfalls of southern Kansas and the Quivira National Wildlife Refuge.

Michael’s world

Kathy and I had a great stay in Colorado last week, based out of Durango. It is quite the drive to get their, though, like about 11 hours or so.

The main goal was for Kathy to do a lot of relaxing and me to do a lot of fly-fishing. Mission accomplished for both of us. Durango has several brew pubs and we hit most of them to try a few of the local beers. My best trout was a rainbow pushing 20 inches. A guy I was fishing with had a brown trout that was 22 inches. I didn’t catch as many fish as I’d hoped, though.

One of the main reasons we went in late September was in hopes of seeing the aspens in full color.

We hit it perfectly and Thursday’s ride on the steam locomotive from Silverton 30 miles back to Durango took us through some stunning country. Kathy and I did a side trip to Creede as we headed home on Friday and saw even more oranges, yellows and pinks. I’ve posted four or five of my favorite photos on my Facebook account.

We’re hoping to head to Colorado for the rest of our Septembers, for the foliage and the fishing. Next year will probably be a miss because it’s looking like Lindsey will be getting married in Yosemite National Park in early September. I’ll sacrifice some fishing for that, for sure.

Sunday morning friend Bob Snyder and I had one of the best teal hunts of the past decade or so. Bob and other buddies had struggled all week but apparently Saturday’s cold front had brought some new birds into where we were hunting in western Reno County. We saw nice numbers, but the way they decoyed is what made it special. We shot well, too, getting our dozen birds with a total of 14 shells. Again, having birds right over the decoys helps that, a lot.

Soooooo, the really big news is that we’re waiting for our first grandchild to come any day. I’m sure Jerrod and Carilyn are even more anxious for their baby boy to arrive.

The due date is Oct. 3, so we’ll be rushing to answer all phone calls and hurrying to check every text from now on.

Bests,

Michael Pearce