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The Fort Riley Ramble-My season’s last hunt in Kansas

Hunting Fort Riley in Kansas from left were Connor Greening, Nicholas Dombrowski, SGM Mark Dombrowski (active duty, Nicholas’s father), Tom Greening (QF member and Connor's father), Alan Hynek, (PF member; Fort Riley Conservation Branch Chief ) and Shawn Carlson, (QF member).

Three gun dogs struck point, hard, not 10 feet before me. I pulled up my 20 ga. just before a bobwhite broke right. My first shot was behind, but the second put him down.

It was an exciting moment at the Fort Riley Army Base with the Fort Riley Pheasants Forever chapter in south central Kansas. I was also hunting last Friday with members of

Alas, the author with the last bird of the 2011-12 hunting season. Farewell, it was a good one. Let's hope 2012-13 is as good.

the Flint Hills Quail Forever chapter. Both chapters work hard to improve habitat for quail at the 100,656-acre Fort Riley Army Base, most of which is open to public hunting for a small fee.

For you history buffs, the fort was founded in 1853 and was named after Major General Bennett C. Riley, who ran interference against understandably upset Native Americans on the besieged Santa Fe Trail. The base, home to about 25,000 people on any given day, was also once home to the late General George Armstrong Custer.

Not only was the quail hunting exciting at times, but the live fire too. Yes, at one point we were directly beneath the flight path of 105mm artillery shells flying overhead. We also heard 50 cal. machine gunfire off in the distance. Of course, we were hunting far from any firing or impact zones. It was fascinating, though. I always wondered what real artillery fire sounded like. My thanks to our armed forces at Fort Riley and elsewhere, especially overseas, for their service!

As we hunted the expansive prairie and wood lots, civilian Alan Hynek, Fort Riley PF chapter leader and base conservation branch chief, explained the many things the chapter is doing to improve habitat for quail, but also for pheasants, prairie chickens, elk, deer and endangered Topeka shiners, piping plovers, least terns and much more. The chapter’s work includes controlled burns, native plant restoration, food plots, tree control, base youth hunts and much more.

Read more about this interesting adventure in coming issues of Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever magazines. If you can’t wait to learn more about Kansas, attend our National Pheasant Fest & Quail Classic Feb. 17-19 in Kansas City.

The Nomad is written by Mark Herwig, Editor of the Pheasants Forever Journal and Quail Forever
Journal. Email Mark at 
MHerwig@pheasantsforever.org.

 

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5 Responses to “The Fort Riley Ramble-My season’s last hunt in Kansas”

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  1. Tom Greening says:

    Hello Mark,

    Connor and I had a blast hunting with you on Ft. Riley! Connor is spelled with an or at the end and you put Tom Greening PF member and Tom’s father under thne picture heading. I think you meant to drop Tom’s father. I wasn’t sure if we would have a chance to correct it before the article comes out so I thought I would give you a shout. Plan on coming dove hunting if you can and I will get a good pond lined up. It is a blast and the dogs love the work. Thanks again,

    Tom and Connor Greening

  2. Tom Greening says:

    Actually I think you meant to write Tom Greening PF member and Connor’s father.

  3. Mark Herwig says:

    Tom, thanks again for hosting the magazine and a great time. I would love to come out for a dove hunt…..I hope to make it! Also, thanks for the corrections.

  4. Tom Greening says:

    Shawn asked me to remind you that him and I are members of QF and not PF.Sorry for the knit picking. Thanks again. Alan is the PF member.

    Tom

  5. Hey guys,

    A couple of us are thinking about making a Kansas hunt after Woodcock closes in early February if the seasons are still open.

    Are there any other public lands in the southeastern part of the state that we could possibly find some quail, prarie chickens, and pheasant.

    Thanks,

    Modie Mascagni
    Vidalia, La/Natchez, Ms

    PS The plan would be to hunt a day in a half on public land then maybe try a guided hunt before we head back South.

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