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Trapline Trophies

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  • Trapline Trophies

    Weather has thwarted my plans for an end of season quickie trapline, at least for today. Soooooooooo.......let's see who I can impress!
    In 1978 my first sojourn into wilderness trapping was as an apprentice trapper. Learned alot, but didn't get to keep any of my first catches, wolverine, marten, and beaver. They all went to the guy I was trapping with. Didn't even get pics. After that year, trapping was a profession, sort of, for me and I was dependant upon the income from the furs. Also, didn't have a place of my own to put anything even if I could have afforded it. My idea of a trophy was forever altered by these experiences and have never had the inclination to have a furbearer mounted. I have had furs hanging on the wall at times, but they got sold when the price went up. Another experience was my buddy having some really nice tanned wolves on his wall in a village, included one that was rugged, but when his family had a potlatch for his deceased sister (he was part athabascan) he had to sit quietly when his other sisters and relatives came in and took the wolves, including the rug, and cut them up for stuff to give away at the potlatch.
    However, that doesn't mean I didn't keep some stuff, in some fashion, as momento's, or as useful items. These are my trophies.
    This pic represents probably the very first trophy I had to show off...hey, do I look like bushrat or what?'s not the 2 hides I'm holding, it's the hat. 3 rats I had caught myself anf had made into a hat. That hat was pretty ragged when I finally dumped it for a new one.

    My next trophy is just a pic. Brings back some vivid memories tho. This was the last time I seriously used an airplane for trapping. It was also the only time I used that particular plane and was still developing my expertise in it. (150hp gcbc) Amazing I didn't wreck it:

    Next is one of the first pieces of clothing I had made for myself. This pic shows the blue parky cover made by an ex's mom, trimmed with wolverine caught by me:

    Still got it and rarely use it. It's just too nice and I really look good in it.........haha! The hat I'm wearing is also a trophy as it is an ideal hat for the climate out here and the way I trap and travel here in the winter.

    The next pic shows my current cover. The fabric and fur was all picked out by me, then sewn by another ex's mom. It is a superb garment for out here:

    I hope it lasts for many more years.

    I think I have to stop here and make a new post to this thread to finish the pics.
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
    I have less friends now!!

  • #2
    My next trophy, or trophies, is more clothing I've had a hand in providing fur for. Here's the ex and her mom and niece, all posing in parkas made by the 3 of them in cooperation, and my daughter sitting in the background also with her little parka on:

    Now we come to some of my most prized trophies:

    No, it's not the woman (well OK maybe it is) or the dead Ox in the background, it's her hat.....Haha! A warm beaver hat made with fur I caught. That's her first kill behind her......and no she didn't get to have a trophy!!
    Then we come to my most prized means of remembering my catches. Here is my daughter in a muskrat parka, made by her gram. The rats were taken by me a long time ago on the Selawik R. and they started as a jacket for my mom. My ex's mom turned it into a parka from the jacket. The wolverine and wolf in the sunshine ruff were taken by me. The wolf being the only one I have ever taken from a plane:

    The latest creation for my daughter, again by her gram, involves not only the ruff in this pic, but the lining of this latest parka. Lynx and fox all caught by me:

    She's on the left.
    I do have a fox pedistal made by the guy who regularly buys taxidermy fox from me, and a few furs on the wall. However, those furs will come down when they are needed.
    I also have some money in the bank from certain trapping/fur activities, and that is another form of trophy for me.

    So, anyone who has some trophies to post, feel free.

    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
    I have less friends now!!


    • #3
      I cant wait for next season to learn ... I would love to catch fur and have it sewn up for a hat for my son or ruffs for my daughters,,. For them to be able to say "me and my dad made it" just awesome.(as i never had that opportunity).. It's certainly an inspiration M.T. to see this post.. thanks a lot for posting
      If you cant stand behind the troops in Iraq.. Feel free to stand in front of them.


      • #4
        Nice MT, gotta get pic's of me w/trophies too. Someday. . .
        The emphasis is on accuracy, not power!


        • #5

          That was a fun thread. I've got some mt. goat skins with short hair I've always wanted to have made into some kind of garmet. The tannery did a great job so the skin is very leather like. Who does that kind of work comercially anymore? It sounds like you worked your connections, family and friends to get your trophies.

          You daugher looks very beautiful in that parka and happy. What a great heirloom to be passed down.

          I'm glad you didn't wreck that plane too.


          • #6

            Nice photos. Great looking bunch of kids. Thanks for taking the time to share.


            • #7
              Gee Mike, how did a nice long-hair like you turn into...well, you? <grin>

              And with all them ex's and their moms, sounds like you have plenty of seamstresses sewing up winter wear, so that's cool. They sure do some nice work too. Can't beat a good anorak or parky; I need to get new canvas for a new anorak as mine is on its last winter.

              Nice pics. Used to have quite a few airplane trappers around up this way, especially when fur prices were high. Not so much anymore but still a couple I know of. Mostly cubs. And some younger guys learned like you did, flying and trapping in the bush with their first plane, none of which were as nice as that GCBC. Mostly BC12s and Champs. Not sure how the brothers with the Taylorcraft survived; that thing was a dog and took forever to get off and they had some gnarly adventures one place or another. But that's how you learn.

              I was in Mentasta once on a correspondence school visit and an Athapaskan woman came up to me and asked to see my fur hat. Don't recall which hat it was back then, beaver maybe. So she examines it real close, checks out the stitch work, and asks, "Which Native woman made this for you, what village?" And when I said I made it she couldn't hardly believe it, and then we got into a funny discussion about how white men sew but Native men not so much, and she wanted to know what was wrong with my wife in that she didn't sew the hat up for me. Not sure what we'd have done all these years had we not learned so much from Native elders about things like hats and mukluks and baskets etc. Sure like the Eskimo styles from your neck of the woods.
              Mark Richards


              • #8
                here's mine

                These are my trophies watching my son catch his first critters when we get enuf we'll have some hats and mittens made.
                Attached Files


                • #9
                  Very cool thread,, and nice trophys..
                  That picture of your daughter in the muskrat parka is great..


                  • #10
                    wear fur

                    A very nice parka on your daughter. Gramma did real good. This would be a good time for everyone to use your fur for garments since the fur prices are low.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by frozen okie View Post
                      These are my trophies watching my son catch his first critters when we get enuf we'll have some hats and mittens made.

                      As long as he keeps the Steelers hat on he will have success. LOL. Its good to see the young ones out there. Nice catch.


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