Abu Garcia and the Association of Collegiate Anglers announce the renewal of their partnership to support college fishing as part of the 2023 Bass Pro Shops Collegiate Bass Fishing Series.
Precision Rifle Series LLC. announced that RCBS is the 2023 Affiliate Sponsor and the Official Reloading Equipment of the Precision Rifle Series.
AGM will be attending the IWA OutdoorClassics 2023 show in Nuremberg Germany 2023 on March 2-5. AGM is an emerging leader in the electro-optics space with 4 very strong years of continued growth.
MidwayUSA is pleased to return as Official Sponsor of the 2023 NRA Annual Meetings and Exhibits. The 152nd NRA Annual Meeting & Exhibits will be held at the Indiana Convention Center on April 14-16 in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Registration is open for Crofton’s Dam Race 2023, which will be July 29 at Lewis and Clark State Recreation Area. Choose your adventure between three events: a triathlon, half-marathon, or 12-mile bike race.

Pope and Young is excited to share some of the featured items that will be up for live auction at their 33rd Biennial Convention taking place in Reno, Nevada, April 12-15, 2023.
PARD announced that they will be attending the 2023 IWA show in Nuremberg Germany, March 2-5. PARD manufactures a wide variety of consumer products that are distributed worldwide.
Billy Chapman has announced the opening of Anglers Inn University with George Large. This is a new educational program designed to further the fishing knowledge and experience for beginners to advanced anglers with new classes on fly, kayak and saltwater fishing.
Geneva County Public Fishing Lake will reopen on March 1, 2023, under the operation of new lake manager Ray Windham.

Gray triggerfish opens today in Gulf state and federal waters. Spotted seatrout also reopens in the Western Panhandle Management Region, but not including Indian Pass/Indian Lagoon.
Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees has provided some of the grandest moments in the history of the event when Classics were held there in 2013 and 2016 — and now, the picturesque reservoir located in the foothills of the Ozark Mountains will add to that grand lore when it plays host to the 54th renewal of the Super Bowl of Bass Fishing March 22-24, 2024.
- GEAR -
These tactical gun range bags are made from 1000 denier nylon with wrap-around carry handles, a 2” padded shoulder strap and YKK #10 zippers.
An $11,000 grant on behalf of the Juniata County, Pennsylvania Whitetails Unlimited Chapter was issued in support of the Home-Town Kids Fishing Derby.

By order of the Montana Fish and Wildlife Commission, the hunting of all mountain lions will close?in Lion Management Unit (LMU) 301,?except for Limited Special License holders,?one-half hour after sunset on Wednesday, March 1.
Chance Beaubouef has joined the STAN Outdoors team for the 2023 season. Chance will be competing with his OnneX Thumb and OnneX Hinge this season after winning the ISAA Pro-Am with his OnneX Thumb.
Shaylene Keiner, President of HeadHunters NW, a recruiting firm focused exclusively on talent acquisition for the shooting, hunting, and outdoor industry, has made a significant donation to the National Shooting Sports Foundation Political Action Committee, in support of the Second Amendment.
Inc. Magazine announces that C&H Precision Weapons is ranked as the fastest growing business in the manufacturing sector and 16th overall among privately held companies in the southeast (Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Puerto Rico, South Carolina and Tennessee).

Southwick Associates identified top brands of hunting and shooting equipment purchased in the market, based on more than 9,000 surveys of hunters and shooters conducted through 2022.
Hunt Like A Girl, a brand of SLG2, Inc., which includes Shoot Like A Girl, Safe LivinG, Hunt Like A Girl and SLG2 Consulting, and Beretta USA are teaming up in support of NSSF’s Plus One movement for their annual guided Turkey Hunt at Midwest Whitetail Adventures in Clay Center, Kansas.
After launching 8 new crossbow models, TenPoint Crossbows is excited to announce they have been named “Best in Archery” in Kinsey’s inaugural Dealer’s Choice Awards.
Pnuma Outdoors, a provider of high-performance hunting apparel and gear, announced its sponsorship of Dan Staton and ElkShape Camp. ElkShape Camp is an immersive hunting experience designed to help hunters of all levels improve their skills and become more successful in the field.

Lyman Products Corp. announced two key appointments in their Sales and Marketing Departments. Alex Hayowyk was appointed National Sales Manager and Spencer Karoll was promoted to Product Manager.
Leupold & Stevens, Inc. announced that Leupold received the Dealer’s Choice Award for Optics at the Kinsey’s Dealer Show 2023 (KDS23), held in Hershey, Pa., Feb. 17-19.
O.F. Mossberg & Sons, Inc. announced personnel changes within its sales and marketing department. Bill Brown will be shifting from his role as Director of Sales into the role of Senior Director of Product Management and Brian Krouse moves into the role of Director of Sales.
A defendant in the Second Amendment Foundation’s challenge of New York’s gun control law has filed a brief with the federal appeals court supporting the plaintiffs’ application for a preliminary injunction, a move which SAF’s Alan Gottlieb welcomed as a pleasant surprise.

QuietKat Electric Bikes is proud to announce all-new 2023 models that are built to be the most capable all-terrain electric bikes on the planet.
SIG SAUER introduces the MCX-SPEAR, the civilian version of the U.S. Army’s new XM7 rifle chosen for the Next Generation Squad Weapons (NGSW) program. The MCX-SPEAR is available in 7.62 NATO and 6.5 Creedmoor and coming soon in 277 SIG Fury.
Introducing OS camo, Prym1 Camo’s latest pattern innovation that draws inspiration from those timeless, old school designs.
CrossBreed's Custom Shop offers a wide range of custom print designs for the Kydex pockets featured on their leading IWB holster styles. Now, the company expands their custom pocket portfolio with the all-new Sprinkles design — a fun and vibrant pattern further accentuated by colored hardware accents.
Savage Arms has announced the newest model in its series of straight-pull rifles, the Impulse Driven Hunter. It’s a straight-pull bolt action rifle with an ambi multi-position bolt handle and aluminum receiver.
Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. introduced its new folding pistol carbine, the M&P FPC. Chambered in 9mm, the optics-ready FPC has a length of 30 ? inches and a compact folded length of 16 ? inches. It comes equipped with three double-stack M&P pistol magazines, including one 17-round and two 23-round mags.
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) is seeking applicants to fill an open seat for an Economist to serve on its Standing Scientific and Statistical Committee.
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) seeks a highly-qualified contractor to update descriptions of Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) for federally managed Gulf of Mexico finfish and shrimp species. helps new adult hunters gain the necessary experience to build the confidence to pursue hunting on their own. Over 270 instructors from 34 states have signed on in just two months.
RC Cartridge, manufacturer of Olympic, World, and National Championship-winning clay target cartridges has joined the long list of industry supporters of the Scholastic Clay Target Program.
Earlier this week, in the Virginia General Assembly, the House of Delegates passed House Resolution 402, commending the NWTF on its 50 years of success.
In recognition of orchestrating the Idaho Game and Fish Department’s Wild about Turkeys workshop for educators, Lori Adams, of Boise, Idaho, received the National Wild Turkey Federation’s National Educator of the Year Award.
Banks Outdoors, makers of outstanding blinds, feeders, and an innovative wildlife watering system, is remaining as a Whitetails Unlimited national sponsorship.
The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department and the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Board will hold public hearings on deer and moose management for 2023 on March 20, 21 and 23.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) continues to monitor bird mortalities suspected to be attributed to Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza throughout Florida. This strain has been documented in the United States since 2021 and was detected for the first time in Florida in January 2022.
Shooting USA is featuring the Open and Limited divisions -- paired together at the USPSA Racegun Nationals. Plus, The Wild West is well represented in Indiana by the Westside Renegades.
For the first time since reintroduction into the wild, the population of Mexican wolves in Arizona and New Mexico has surpassed 200, with a minimum of 241 wild wolves documented in 2022.
If you want to see migrating wild swans this time of year, two spots in northern Utah are great places to see these magnificent birds as they wing their way through the state in March. To celebrate the swans’ return, the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources will also be holding a special event on March 11.
Registration is now open for the April 21-23 Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) workshop at Camp Io-Dis-E-Ca, near Solon.

Here in the South, many of us pronounce “flowers” as “flares”, which sometimes draws odd looks from our northern neighbors when we tell them we got flares for the wife on Valentine’s day. (My wife loves boats, but even she would have something unpleasant to say if I presented her with a package of flares for that day which seems so important to ladies.)

Be that as it may, if you operate a powerboat anywhere on U.S. waters, you are required by law to have a pack of operational flares or other nighttime signaling devices aboard. And, while most of us probably do have said flares tucked down underneath the towels and life jackets somewhere, there’s a very good chance they are so far out of date that Franklin D. Roosevelt could have used them on the Presidential Yacht.

The Coast Guard or the local marine patrol won’t arrest you for having out-of-date flares aboard (usually, unless you have an attitude) but they’re likely to issue a reminder citation and might even send you back to the dock, especially if you’re out around sundown or after dark. So it’s wise to keep these safety devices updated both legally and for the safety of your family and guests aboard.

Pyrotechnic flares “expire” 42 months after the date of manufacture. If you’ve had yours aboard for more than three summers, it’s time to replace them this spring before you head out. They “expire” but they still work. Some people have been saved by flares almost 10 years out of date. But to be legal, you have to be inside the 42-month window.

A pack of three is one of the least expensive things you’ll buy for a boat, fortunately. A pack of four is about $40.

Incidentally, since flares are sort of an “Oh my God!” device that you are likely to be using in the dark during a period of very high stress, it’s a good idea to take your old flares out in the back yard and practice with them—read the instructions on how to touch them off, and then light them up. 

A safety note—these are not toys for the kids. They produce white-hot slag as they burn, and if that stuff falls on a bare foot, it’s a trip to the emergency room. If you use them aboard, hold them out over the water—the drippings can melt fiberglass.

If you just want to get rid of them safely, the Sea Tow Foundation now has a listing of locations where they can be dropped off for safe disposal. See the listing, which includes locations in 13 states, here: Sea Tow Foundation. If there’s not a listing near you, a call to your local fire department will probably do the job.

Don’t throw them in the nearest dumpster—that’s both illegal and a risk to the folks handling the trash. 

Alternatively, keep the old flares aboard in the same watertight plastic container where you keep the new ones, because one pack of flares may not be enough to bring help when you really, really need it.

Each flare burns only about 3 minutes, so the typical four-pack is only good for 12 minutes of signaling. Better you should have extras.

You might also opt for aerial flares or a flare gun, which shoot a pyrotechnic flare hundreds of feet into the air. These are more effective than the hand-held flares, but they also have the 42-month expiration on the ammunition. They can also be very dangerous in the hands of inexpert users. They are considered firearms in some states, to give you an inkling, and they fire a 12-gauge round. They’re about $100 including five flares—Orion and others make them.

A new generation of technology allows doing away with disposable (and highly flammable) flares altogether.

There are now Coast Guard-approved strobe emergency flares like ACR’s ResQFlare and Sirius’ Signal-C that operate on a couple of C-cell batteries. The great thing about these is there are no flammables involved, and to operate you simply flip a switch and they begin blinking out an SOS signal. (You may also need an orange distress flag for daytime use—check your state’sregulations—or just carry the flag as an extra precaution, whether you need it or not.)

The battery-powered signaling devices cost about $80, but you can buy one and never have to buy another—just replace the batteries annually. Operational life on a set of batteries is 20 hours according to the companies, over 3 times longer than USCG requirement for maintaining peak fixed intensity.

These things are also great because they’re completely waterproof and require no water-tight storage. In fact, they float, so should the boat sink out from under you, you can take the flair with you into the water (gulp!) and activate it to hopefully direct rescuers to your location.

In the end, flares or night-time signaling devices are one of those things destined to rest forgotten somewhere aboard your boat, and that’s a good thing. But if you ever need them, you’ll be really, really glad the ones you have are up to date and ready to function. 

-- Frank Sargeant

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