TODAY’S SCOUTING TOOLS
There are several tools available today that have cut down the need for some leg work. Although leg work certainly has it’s place when scouting possible trapping locations, today’s technology has provided us with a couple of other alternatives.
I believe it would be safe to say that most trappers today have access to a cell phone, and a good percentage have smart phones. An app is available on our smart phones that shows property boundaries, owners names and acreage of possible trapping locations. This is very valuable when trying to obtain permission to trap unfamiliar trapping locations.
Most homes today have access to a computer and Map Quest provides aerial views of individual properties that shows physical features of the properties such as creeks, other water sources, roads/ trails, pinch points, barriers and possible travel ways. I personally have used these aerial views to mark specific productive trap locations which saves time when it’s time to be stringing steel.
GPS is another tool I have found to be valuable when it’s time to be setting cable restraints. Because a lot of snares/restraints can be set at any given area, GPS coordinates can be stored in ones GPS for specific locations and can aid in locating the exact spot when checking your restraints. This may seem a little far fetched, but I have spent time searching for a restraint I thought I set at a location. At that time of year I would rather be remaking or making new sets instead of spending time searching for previous made sets.
The four wheeler and or side-by-side is another piece of equipment which can aid in cutting down on the leg work when scouting and most property owners will allow their use if used responsibly.
Game cameras are another scouting tool and can be used to photograph animals at potential trapping locations. Cameras placed at possible trap locations can reveal the type, the number and the time animals visit each set location. Cameras are relatively inexpensive and most are user friendly, so utilize them when possible.
THE INTERNET, IN GENERAL
One of the biggest tools available to the masses today is the Internet, and although not so much for scouting most any question or needed information can be obtained on the Internet. Anything from trap size to fleshing and finishing furs can be found on the internet. Facebook, You tube, Google and some unnamed, contain tons of information.
Today’s technology has certainly changed the face of scouting for trapping and should be utilized to some extent, even by us old timers who put on many miles scouting, before the world of today’s technology.
bits and pieces by JES 🙂
(John Stempien is from Sweet Valley Pennsylvania and is a guest contributor to H2 Tackle and Outdoors)