After a 24-hour drive from Maryland to Aberdeen, S.D., we didn't mind spending a few days stretching our legs. That said, we did so quite literally—flat on our backs, in layout blinds. As per the norm, we had to chase snow geese across the prairie with our outfitter, Goosehog Outdoors. That meant layout blinds.
Tank, our faithful gundog (now in his seventh year) stood at the ready, as always. He's getting a little gray in the face, but still had little trouble competing with our guide's much-younger black lab for birds.
After a long day afield, it felt good to walk away with birds in hand. Our unofficial "camo" sponsor, by the way, was my father's family-owned small business, Skipper's Electric. He couldn't resist ordering custom white hoodies for the trip.
When I say we had good field lunches, I mean it. We put the Camp Chef Pro 90X Three Burner Stove to good use, often attracting the attention of passing motorists. We happily invited them to join us for lunch, though few accepted the offer. Their loss.
The Pro 90X stove is handy because, thanks to Camp Chef's bevy of attachments, it delivers no shortage of versatility. We combined it with the company's Professional Flat Top Griddle periodically throughout the week.
For the 2017 conservation season, I opted for the Benelli Super Black Eagle 3. Beyond coming from reliable roots, I liked the idea of having an inertia-driven action. A good spring snow goose shoot can potentially end in triple digits. That's a lot of shooting—it's awfully handy to have a clean-shooting gun on hand. It acquitted itself quite well.