ALL CHOKED UP! We’re that excited for Pheasant Opener! Just five days until North Dakota’s pheasant season kicks off on Sat. Oct. 7. Here’s hoping you’re getting your gear together, your dog’s final exercises in and your shot in order, if you haven’t already. Speaking of the latter, we talk about primary pheasant hunting chokes and when to use them in today’s Three Things.
WEATHER (Bismarck Forecast):
Today: Mon 10/2 – Perfect autumn day. Hi 61, Lo 43, Winds WSW@10.
Tomorrow: Tue 10/3 – Chance of rain overnight. Hi 55, Lo 40, Winds W@10.
SOLUNAR (Bismarck Times):
Sunrise: 7:44AM Sunset: 7:19PM
Moonrise: 6:11PM Moonset 3:59AM
Overhead: 11:34PM Underfoot: 11:10AM
Moon Phase: Waxing Gibbous (89% Full)
EDGE HOUR. 6:00 – 7:00PM. Winds taper to near nothing in conjunction with moonrise leading into sunset. Get on stand a bit early tonight and get ready for some serious deer movement during the Edge Hour.
ALWAYS IMPROVING. Improved Cylinder chokes provide an open pattern and are great for early season hunting where roosters can get up a bit closer than in a couple weeks and a couple months. It’s also a great choke for quick shots in front of a pointing dog that may be at close range. Typically an IC choke will deliver 50 percent of a shot load in a 30-inch circle at 40 yards. Pattern your IC choke out leading up to the opener to see just how many pellets would register on a pheasant target at 20-, 30- or 40-yards and make the change based on your style of hunting.
MOD SQUAD. A good all-around choke throughout the season, Modified Chokes provide a tighter pattern to help pick up mid-range birds and put more shot on them as they flush away. Mod chokes will deliver 60 percent of pellets in a 30-inch circle at 40 yards; of course this varies by shell brand and type, so make sure to pattern your loads out and see how they go through your particular mod choke.
FULLY LOADED. For late season birds that are very jumpy and flush at far distances, or for a back-up to your mod barrel, Full Chokes keep things tight until further downrange. Here 70 percent of pellets will be found in a 30-inch circle at 40 yards. Many older, fixed barrels will come standard with a Full Choke.
Now you know your chokes, so you won’t this pheasant season. Stay Sharp!