Feeling A Bit Sheepish…T Minus 28 days…but who’s counting?

By: Kirstie Pike- CEO Prois Hunting Apparel for Women

Kirstie Pike- Prois CEO

Kirstie Pike- Prois CEO

It’s crazy, but time is flying by but is also standing still as I am getting ready for my upcoming sheep hunt!  Is it weird that I stare at the calendar and mouth breathe?

28 days left.   Four weeks to be exact.  40,320 minutes to be more precise.

Preparation for this hunt has by far been the most work yet the most fun.  We have been working hard to prepare and I am really thankful to have this time as we have had great opportunity to evaluate our plans and make changes accordingly prior to the hunt.

Scouting.  We have spent every available weekend scouting the high country.  We are glassing and watching.  Glassing and watching.  Oh…and hiking.  Holy Mother of God are we hiking!  While this is country I have been in many different times, it has been a great experience looking at it from entirely different perspectives.  There really is a much different level of interest and excitement than I experience with elk and even deer hunting.  This is awesome.

Access Points.  Undoubtedly, sheep hunting is strenuous and intense.  The vertical climbs and terrain changes can be difficult and sometimes downright dangerous.  We have spent many hours identifying prospective access points for ascent.  While some vantage points may appear to be good routes, often times they are not as easy as they would seem.  After scouting numerous peaks, we are finally feeling good about our best ascent routes and options.  But then again, at 12,000 feet, nothing feels terrific and guppy breathing is pretty common. IMG_1186

Camp Sites.  We almost always choose to pack into remote camps via horseback for most of our hunting ventures.  We will be doing this again with this hunt as we are packing in eight miles deep.  However, for this particular hunt we have opted to have someone take the horses out for us as soon as we drop the packs.  The horses become a distraction we don’t particularly want to deal with during this hunt.  We will be hitting the ridges at 4:30 in the morning and most likely not returning until after dark.  While it doesn’t particularly excite me not to have a “get away car”, it will be much easier for us to concentrate on hunting.   We have identified a well-protected site with plenty of water that gets us a bit further up the peak.  Interestingly, last weekend we packed in and stayed where we had originally thought to place our camp.  While initially this camp seemed perfect, the access was much, much further and steeper than we had predicted.  Thankfully we spent that time in the camp prior to the hunt so we could really look at our options before we were committed on the hunt.

Gear Preparation.  We keep a very condensed collection of gear we use when we pack into the high country.  It has been very good to get out and spend time using all of it.  Through our camping excursions we have been able to discuss how to make our gear as minimal and efficient as possible.  While I thought we kept it all pretty minimal, we have found some great ways to make it even more so.  I have also had time to really evaluate what clothing I need to take.  I can truly reduce my needs by about half of what I had previously planned.  This is a huge space and weight savings.  By dialing down the optimal clothing systems, I have planned on the following for a week in the high country:

  1. Galleann Rain Pants
  2. Gallean Rain Jacket
  3. Archtach Down Jacket
  4. 1 x Ultra Pants
  5. 1 x Adventure Pants
  6. 2 x Merino long underwear
  7. 2 Merino long sleeve shirts
  8. 2 Merino tank tops
  9. 2 Merino sports bras/underwear
  10. Beanie/Neck Gaitor
  11. 3 x Incredisocks
  12. Kennetrek gaiters
  13. Zamberlan Vioz boots

So…as we get closer you will hear more of my incessant ramblings about counting days and counting sheep!  Have I mentioned it’s only 28 days away?
 

 

A Word From the CEO- It Is Officially The Hunting Doldrums

IMG_7545By:  Kirstie Pike- CEO & Founder Prois Hunting Apparel

The doldrums.

I was recently putting away all of my gear and equipment from turkey season when it came to me.  This time of year is officially the Doldrums for hunters.

Typically, as I offload my packs and gear at the end of one particular hunting season, I am simultaneously repacking and organizing for the next hunt which is never far behind.  I am changing calls, optics and essentials.  I am switching out from shotgun to rifle to bow.  I am packing licenses, ONYXmaps and whatever else I need.

But it is the Doldrums and my pack (named Packpack) sits empty and withered in my closet. When I open the door Packpack makes me feel guilty. He just stares at me with a big, frowning zipper.  But it’s not just that.  Here are some additional signs that I am drifting about in the hunting Doldrums.

  • I log onto the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website weekly to see when the small game regulation brochure comes out.  Something has to be in season soon.
  • I drive past all of my duck hunting honey holes every day.  I find myself counting ducks, looking at the terrain and quietly letting all waterfowl know that they will be mine.
  • I slow down to count geese.  Oh man…there are geese.  Lots of geese.  They will be mine.
  • I may have logged on to see when the 2016 waterfowl dates are.  Still.  Not.  Posted.
  • I begin irrationally hoarding all wildgame in the freezer.
  • I have already purchased my turkey loads for fall.  I wasn’t a boy scout, but I like preparation.
  • My husband won’t acknowledge my repeated requests to go scouting.  Something about no access yet.  Pish.  Whatever.
  • I have rearranged the fall hunting licenses on the bulletin board by dates and alphabetical order.
  • I went to the close out sale at Sports Authority for shorts.  Didn’t buy shorts but did buy two new pairs of hunting gloves.
  • When I pull out of the garage, I promise Lola (my bow) that I will pay more attention to her soon.  It’s not her.  It’s me.
  • I sit on the deck with a glass of wine and find myself ranging objects on the ranch.
  • I can neither confirm nor deny I have investigated the weather patterns and precipitation for the last three years for the dates of my sheep hunt.  Don’t judge.
  • I may or may not have mentally rearranged the house for potential incoming mounts.
  • I have entered all posted hunting seasons in various states into my calendar.  You never know.

So there it is.  I have been cast adrift in the hunting doldrums and am impatiently waiting for the winds to change.  It seems I will continue to mouth breathe my way into fall and continue my ever increasing Doldrum activities until that time.  Until then…

Hunting Doldrums

Hunting Doldrums

PROIS WITHDRAWS FROM SHOT AND ATA, MAKES PLAN TO ATTEND MORE CONSUMER SHOWS

The Apparel Company Shifts Focus to Accommodate Growing Customer Base

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The New Year is fast approaching and 2016 is full of exciting things to come for Próis®. In addition to a fresh new look and great new gear, the apparel company is taking its show schedule directly to consumers. A rapidly growing female hunting market brings increased sales and more demand for the women’s hunting gear we all know and love so much.

In order to accommodate new and existing customers, Próis plans on shifting their focus to consumer shows rather than trade shows. You can find them at the following events: RMEF Hunter and Outdoor Christmas Expo, Dallas Safari Club, Wild Sheep Foundation Convention, Safari Club International, Western Hunting and Conservation Expo, and the NRA National Convention. In addition, Próis will be present at most of the ladies functions connected to each event. They have opted to forego the ATA Trade Show and the SHOT Show in order to attend this new variety of consumer-based shows.

“Do not be misled, Próis is better than ever,” said Kirstie Pike, President/CEO of Próis Hunting and Field Apparel. “We look forward to doing what we do best: connecting with female hunters and shooters across the country. It is, after all, what sets us apart from all the rest!”

Próis was created for women, by women who refuse to settle for downsized men’s gear or upsized children’s gear. Each garment is created with the most technologically advanced fabrics available and a host of advanced features to provide comfort, silence and durability. The company’s out-of-the-box thinking has resulted in amazing designs for serious hunters that have taken the industry by storm and raised the bar for women’s outdoor apparel.

To learn more about the company’s innovative line of serious, high-performance huntwear for real women, contact: Próis Hunting and Field Apparel, 28001-B US Highway 50, Gunnison, CO 81230 · (970) 641-3355 · Or visit: www.proishunting.com

The Prois Lead Chicks Katherine Grand and Kirstie Pike Work Hard…Play Hard!

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Prois Dealer Relations Coordinator and Pro-Staff Coordinator Katherine Grand with another bunny in the bag thanks to her amazing redtail named Kit!

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Prois CEO Kirstie Pike lands some great lake trout over the weekend. #proiswasthere

It takes technical hunting clothing for your hardcore pursuits…Prois is your only choice!

From the Prois Ladies Room~ 4 Great Tips for Running & Gunning Turkeys

By: Kirstie Pike
CEO Prois Hunting & Field Apparel for Women

 

Great Turkey Tips for Fidgeters!

I confess.  I cannot sit still.  Not at all.  Even if I AM sitting still, I am not.  In fact, I had one turkey guide nickname me, “Fidgets”.

This does in fact pose a problem when it comes to turkey hunting.  I. Just. Can’t. Sit. Still.

Having spent a good amount of time pursuing turkeys this spring, it has become sport for me to keep on the run.  While this technique of run and gun flies in the face of most methods of turkey hunting, it has become one of my favorite endeavors!

Ok, I confess.  I can sit quietly early in the morning.  Even if I have had 3 cups of coffee.  I may be twitchy, but I can sit and wait for the gobblers to come down from their roost, round up their hens and get on the move.  I can sit and call and be patient.  I can sit and assess the movements of the birds.

Until they move away from me.  Then it’s on like Donkey Kong.

All joking aside, this method of hunting can indeed be successful.  With a bit of planning and a willingness to take a chance, you can indeed spot and stalk that bird.

  1. Understand the typical movements of the birds you are hunting:  If you are familiar with their roosting patterns, you should also have an idea as to which directions they tend to move. Don’t be afraid to spend a few mornings and evenings just observing.  Once the birds are on the move, it is often easy to plan a quick route to cut them off.
  2. Have a good understanding of the land and cover:  Be aware as to where the water sources are.  Know where the brush breaks are and where your best routes are located.  This enables you to get into a new location quickly, efficiently and quietly.  Nothing is more frustrating than being on the move only to be stopped by impassible obstacles. Spend time scouting the areas before the season. Once you know the best routes, it becomes quite easy to run and gun once the birds are on the move.
  3. Do not over pack.  I am perpetually amazed when I see turkey hunters laden down with huge packs and vests.  While taking a bit of water is a necessity, taking 3 litres for a 4 hour morning hunt is a bit more than necessary.  While it is entirely unconventional, I suggest not wearing a pack.  At all.  I have found that carrying my calls in my pockets and lumbar compartments is most efficient.  I am a minimalist- I carry my calls, my phone, my license and very compact flashlight.  All of this fits in my pockets.  I carry my shotgun shells in my cargo pockets and I am off.  A huge bulky pack or vest is noisy and a hindrance to any sort of quick movements.  Just try running with a turkey vest.  You’ll see what I mean.  Now, when it comes to decoys, I prefer to take one hen decoy that is very sleek and portable and can be carried while on the run.
  4. Be willing to take a chance:   Why not?  So you’ve sat and the birds just aren’t coming in despite all of your efforts.  Now, moving in or around on birds is not without potential risks.  Turkeys can be educated quite easily and moving about recklessly through their grounds can cause them to re-pattern.  The key is to know the best routes to move behind or around the birds without being detected.

 

While this method of turkey hunting is not at all for everyone, I have found it to be fun, entertaining and quite challenging.  It works with my caffeine fueled inability to remain still.

 

A Not-So-Conventional-Prois-Gear-Review!

By: Prois Staffer, Nancy Rodriguez

As I sat on my front porch gnawing at the cardboard box that was clutched in my hands, I watched my delivery guy dust off his knees and walk up my driveway with a limp. I really need to control my tackling tendencies if I want my delivery guy to come back. But seriously, how else is a girl supposed to act when a beautiful brown box shows up on her doorstep with a Prois label on it? As I frantically opened my beautiful box with tooth and nail, my husband strolled by a said, “I think you just crossed over to the crazy side, and maybe you should come up for air!”

Did he say Crazy?…Ha! It was over 90 degrees out and as I pulled each piece of clothing out of the box it ended up on me! I just had to model all my new gear right then and there. Covered head to toe in Prois, including my Sherpa jacket and beanie, I strolled around the house trying to show off my gear to whoever would look at me. OK, so my cat looked at me and I’m sure she thought I looked pretty cute!

I sauntered back to my bedroom and realized some of my leftover Prois gear was on the floor. With my Prois decal stuck to my forehead and cardboard still stuck in my teeth, I lay down in the middle of my new gear and I began to make snow angels. I believe they were called Prois angels. Some people may think that’s crazy behavior, but if they do, then they don’t know what Prois is made of! As I lay in utter bliss, I started to doze off and dream of hunting…

In the Field

I was packing out my antelope from my recent hunt in Wyoming. I was dressed in head to toe Prois and I reflected back on how great my gear performed. The backcountry shirt that I wore wicked away the moisture, as I climbed high along the ridges under the intense sun. The front neck zipper is great to open up for added cooling. The body length is also nice, as it doesn’t tend to ride up when you’re sitting and glassing. My Pro Edition pants are by far the most comfortable hunting pants I have ever owned (and that’s a lot of pants). The sizing is great, as it’s hard to find pants that don’t bind you in certain areas when you’re climbing up extremely steep terrain. The other fantastic part of these pants is the fabric. They are exceptionally soft, but most of all completely silent. The perfect pant to make sure you can quietly stalk your game. When the wind picked up, my Sherpa jacket went on. This jacket is the warmest piece of fleece I own. I love that the sleeves are a bit longer, so you can use the thumb holes for extra warmth on your hands. This jacket is perfect for added warmth for hunts in the spring or fall. To top it off, I wore my lucky Prois hat. All of my gear was in the Max 1 pattern. The camo blends in fantastic with the sage prairies. I cannot rant and rave enough about what exceptional gear Prois has! Finally there is female hunting gear that fits a woman’s body, and is tough, rugged, and oh so cute…just like the gals that wear it!

Prois Staffer Nancy Rodriguez

Side note by Prois CEO, Kirstie Pike…this is by far the BEST gear review ever! Thank you for the great words and your awesome sense of humor! Welcome to crazy!

Ladies Hunt in Packs Too! Another Amazing Prois Ladies Hunt!

By: Kirstie Pike
CEO Prois Hunting & Field Apparel for Women

Members of the Prois Posse recently congregated at Paloma Pachenga near Hondo, Texas for a great day of dove hunting. In true Prois fashion, we converged on the unsuspecting ranch with whoops of hilarity and cut-throat sarcasm. Ladies (and I may need to use that term loosely) in attendance were Crystal Ivy, Stephanie Wottrich, Kara Jo Lorenz, Jody Geistweidt, Christy Turner, Katherine Grand and myself. With a crew like this…it is quickly clear that fun was on the agenda!

We pounded through boxes of shells and most likely bagged a single limit between all of us! Did I mention laughter abounded? We later congregated for a delicious meal of Texas BBQ, story swapping and over the top laughter.

I am personally proud to associate with such an amazing group of ladies (yes…I do in fact use that term loosely) and am equally proud to call each of them a friend. I feel that this unique sisterhood of female hunters will only continue to grow and I cannot wait to watch the craziness unfold!

To my sisters…oooh. Crash.

Left to Right: Kara, Christy, Katherine, Jody, Stephanie, Kirstie, Crystal and Jackie