Archive for December, 2010

Hunt Results for San Jacinto 12/29/10

Despite the rainy weather, or maybe because of it, hunting at San Jacinto Wildlife area slowed for the second week in a row. The weather, and the fact that hunters were required to walk in to their assigned blinds, didn’t keep hunters at home however. Tom Trakes, from San Jacinto, reported that the results for Saturday, 12/29/10 were as follows:

138 adult and 10 junior hunters checked in 116 Northern Shovelers, 12 Widgeon, 9 Buffelheads, 2 Cinnamon Teal, 13 Gadwall, 17 Green Wing Teal, 10 Mallards, 2 Pintail, 4 Red Heads, 24 Ring Necks, 9 Ruddys and 1 blue-wing teal for an average of 1.48 waterfowl per hunter. Tom advised that out of 50 reservation cards 26 showed up on time.

There is a lot of open water in the area of the refuge now, including Mystic Lake, and this may have dispersed the waterfowl throughout the area resulting in less birds on the refuge.

San Jacinto is open for waterfowl hunting on Wednesdays and Saturdays only. You can put in for reservations through the state reservation system (your card has to be to Fish and Game in Sacramento 17 days in advance to get in on the drawing – buy one day and five day reservation cards at your local license agent AKA: sporting goods store) or you can get in on the daily “sweatline” drawing for the remaining blinds after the reservations are taken care of. Reservation spots are given out starting at 3 AM and the “sweatline” drawing is done after that. You can also show up for an afternoon refill hunt but the last refill is at 1 PM. For more information, contact the staff at San Jacinto at 951-928-0580.

SoCalHunt San Jacinto Hunt Report 12/29/10

We have yet another SoCalHunt hunting report from San Jacinto.

My hunting partner and I headed out to San Jacinto Wildlife Area to do an afternoon refill hunt today. We opted to do the afternoon today because we wanted to take my partner’s 7-year-old daughter along with us today.

As reported here at SoCalHunt yesterday, Davis Road was in abysmal shape. My truck is not a 4×4 but I do have mud tires on it so we figured we could make it, especially when we saw a car coming out towards Ramona Expressway. As Tom told SoCalHunt yesterday, Davis Road resembled the surface of the moon with the amount of craters on it. We took it slow and finally made it to the check station. There were a large number of trucks in the parking lot, however this was not indicative of the amount of people waiting to refill. Being it was a walk-in day, everybody that was out hunting had their truck in the main lot. We went up to the check station and signed in. There were only about 4 or 5 other hunting parties waiting to refill. We waited about an hour for a hunter coming in from a good blind to check in and finally scored one of the premium blinds on the refuge.

Now the fun begins. As we walk over to the truck to get our guns and gear it starts to rain pretty hard. Since we were walking in, of course, we dumped most of our gear in the truck bed and took off with our Ducks & Bucks cart towards our assigned blind, probably about a mile and a half plus, with my partner’s daughter hitching a ride in the cart.

As we headed out the main road to the blinds I took a few pictures of conditions to supplement what Tom reported in yesterday’s conditions report here on SoCalHunt. Fortunately the internal roads at San Jacinto Wildlife Area are really good roads and there was no slippery mud to contend with. The problem, and the reason we couldn’t drive out today, is that there were several areas where the road is swamped with up to almost a foot of water. It might have still been possible to drive the roads but doing so would have just torn them up and I can see why the San Jacinto staff doesn’t want that to happen.

At the turnaround at Marsh A / Pond 1 the road was at least half covered with water.

At Marsh B the road was again covered with water.

At the turn at the far corner of Pond 3 there was water completely covering the road to just beyond the “V” in the road. (You can also see my partner towing his daughter in the cart in this picture while she holds her “camo” umbrella, LOL).

To get where we were going we took the right fork at the “V” and this was flooded from the “V” to about the dike between Marsh D and the G Blinds.

We finally got to our spot after an hour of walking and settled in. The weather was, as anyone in Southern California could tell you today, unsettled. It rained on and off, from very light to moderate rain, until almost quitting time.

The ducks weren’t flying as well as they have been in the past few weeks. This may have been because all the new water in the area has dispersed them far and wide, maybe a case of too much of a good thing. Not long after we arrived my partner had a hen mallard swing into the decoys on his side and dropped her. After a short while a hen spoony did the same and ended up on the strap also. I had only two opportunities all afternoon on my side and blew both chances. Just about 40 minutes before quitting time my partner dumped a double on a hen and drake ringneck.

Here and there we had a few shovelers swing in close for a look but they stayed out of range or we didn’t see them until they were on the way out, too late to do anything about it.

Just before quitting time we pulled our 8 decoys and packed the cart up for the walk out. We were one of the last parties to leave and when we arrived at the Marsh A turnaround we were very happy to see Durk in his Fish & Game truck coming out to check on us so we got a ride back to the check station for about the last ½ mile.

So, another enjoyable afternoon at San Jacinto with our own built in cheering section (my buddy’s daughter) along for the ride.

Info for San Jacinto Wildlife Area for Hunt Day Wednesday – 12/29/10

Due to the predicted incoming storm for this Wednesday, 12/29/10, I called Tom Trakes at San Jacinto to get a report on conditions at the refuge.

Tom advised that Wednesday’s hunt will definitely be walk-in only, and will probably be so for the remainder of the season. The road out to the blinds from the check station is completely under water from about pond 3 to the “V”. Tom also reported that the road out to Walkers is under water too over by the “F” ponds.

So, if you’re going, pack light and be prepared to hoof it. Remember you can only have 25 shells in the field so, obviously (unless you’re some kind of stud cross-country runner), there won’t be any going back to the truck to get more if you run out, so pick your shots carefully.

As for getting to the check station Tom told me that Davis road is passable but in rough shape. Tom said, “Its like driving on the moon”. The road is real pitted and rough. Tom said the county might come in and level it out with a grader but they’d probably need at least a week of dry weather before they’ll do that so who knows when, or if, that will happen. So, for Davis Road, the advice is to take it slow, slow, slow.

The good aspect of all this rain is that Mystic Lake has finally reappeared! Tom told me that Mystic is about 1/3 full and is still coming up. Tom said he was out at one of the old shoreline blinds on Mystic the other day and the lakeshore was about 75 yards from the blind. San Jacinto always shoots better when Mystic lake has water as it gives the birds a place to rest right next to the refuge.

San Jacinto is open for waterfowl hunting on Wednesdays and Saturdays only. You can put in for reservations through the state reservation system (your card has to be to Fish and Game in Sacramento 17 days in advance to get in on the drawing – buy one day and five day reservation cards at your local license agent AKA: sporting goods store) or you can get in on the daily “sweatline” drawing for the remaining blinds after the reservations are taken care of. Reservation spots are given out starting at 3 AM and the “sweatline” drawing is done after that. You can also show up for an afternoon refill hunt but the last refill is at 1 PM. For more information, contact the staff at San Jacinto at 951-928-0580.

San Jacinto Wildlife Area Loma Linda Children’s Hospital Toy Drive a Big Success!!

Tom Trakes, from San Jacinto Wildlife Area, told me that their annual toy drive for Loma Linda Children’s Hospital was a huge success. Much of the thanks go to the San Jacinto hunters who donated overwhelmingly. In my opinion (and not to downplay the contributions of the San Jacinto hunters) a large portion of the thanks should go to the San Jacinto staff; Tom, Tim, Durk and Aurelio; for running the whole shootin’ match. They wheeled 8 wagons full of toys into Loma Linda and still had to carry toys in the door. Tom wanted me to relay a big thanks to everyone who donated!! Way to go San Jacinto hunters!!

Hunt Results for San Jacinto 12/22/10

Duck Hunting at San Jacinto Wildlife area dropped off a bit from Saturday’s results with hunters bagging less ducks in muddy and rainy conditions on the refuge. Tom Trakes, from San Jacinto, reported the following results for Wednesday, 12/22/10:

110 adult and 10 junior hunters bagged 28 widgeon, 1 buffelhead, 1 cinnamon teal, 25 gadwall, 20 green-wing teal, 5 mallards, 109 northern shovelers, 13 pintail, 5 red-head, 12 ring necks, 4 ruddy ducks, and 3 scaup. There were also 2 Ross’s geese taken. The average number of birds was 1.95 per hunter.

Tom reported that 17 out of the 50 reservation cardholders showed up on time.

San Jacinto is open for waterfowl hunting on Wednesdays and Saturdays only. You can put in for reservations through the state reservation system (your card has to be to Fish and Game in Sacramento 17 days in advance to get in on the drawing – buy one day and five day reservation cards at your local license agent AKA: sporting goods store) or you can get in on the daily “sweatline” drawing for the remaining blinds after the reservations are taken care of. Reservation spots are given out starting at 3 AM and the “sweatline” drawing is done after that. You can also show up for an afternoon refill hunt but the last refill is at 1 PM. For more information, contact the staff at San Jacinto at 951-928-0580.

Remember, tomorrow, Saturday 12/25/10, the refuge will be closed to hunting for Christmas day.

Late Hunt Results for San Jacinto 12/15/10

This is a late report for Wednesday 12/15/10. Full numbers were not available until today (12/24/10). Sorry for the delay on this one.

Duck Hunting at San Jacinto Wildlife area picked up slightly from last Saturday’s (12/11/10) pace with hunters reporting decent bags of ducks. Tom Trakes, from San Jacinto, reported the following results for Wednesday, 12/15/10:

114 adult and 6 junior hunters bagged 14 widgeon, 4 buffelhead, 21 cinnamon teal, 43 gadwall, 107 green-wing teal, 11 mallards, 1 merganser, 52 northern shovelers, 74 pintail, 1 red-head, 3 ring necks, 22 ruddy ducks, 1 scaup and 4 coots. This resulted in an average of 2.98 waterfowl per hunter. There were no geese taken.

Tom reported that 27 out of the 50 reservation cardholders showed up on time.

San Jacinto is open for waterfowl hunting on Wednesdays and Saturdays only. You can put in for reservations through the state reservation system (your card has to be to Fish and Game in Sacramento 17 days in advance to get in on the drawing – buy one day and five day reservation cards at your local license agent AKA: sporting goods store) or you can get in on the daily “sweatline” drawing for the remaining blinds after the reservations are taken care of. Reservation spots are given out starting at 3 AM and the “sweatline” drawing is done after that. You can also show up for an afternoon refill hunt but the last refill is at 1 PM. For more information, contact the staff at San Jacinto at 951-928-0580.

San Jacinto Closed Christmas Day (Saturday 12/25/10)

Just a reminder, since Christmas this year falls on a Saturday, San Jacinto Wildlife area, and all other refuges in the state for that matter, will be closed to hunting on Saturday, 12/25/10.

(As if the wife would let me go hunting Christmas day anyway…)


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