Category Archives: video

Reel Adventures with Darcizzle Offshore

Watch out, guys—there’s a new girl rockin’ the boat, and she has a knack for catching anything off the Southern Florida coast. Watch the Pocket Ranger® video channel for fun and exciting fishing adventures brought to you by Darcizzle Offshore. Her name stands up to her reputation with jaw-dropping videos that reel you in and never let you go! To get you started, watch her bass fishing expedition:

Darcizzle Offshore host, Darcie, takes fishing to another level. Her skill behind a fishing rod and experience handling the deep unknown captivate audiences, “showing the world girls CAN fish too, one catch at a time.” Whether you are an avid angler or experience fish only when it’s on your plate, follow her blog for the latest updates. The videos are nonstop entertainment and know-how, showing the best ways for a successful fishing trip. In the below video, Darcie invites viewers on a lobster dive, giving step-by-step instructions on how to find the big ones and bring them to your table:

Enough to make your mouth water, right? By subscribing to Darcizzle Offshore’s YouTube channel, you can get an angling education from someone who has done it her entire life, which far surpasses what you could get trying to learn on your own. You can also follow her on Twitter and Instagram then like her on Facebook. By following her on Google+, you can stay up-to-date on what’s happening in the world of Florida fishing, including monthly fishing reports, events, and more. Darcie also likes to help promote partners and sponsors, often bringing them along on her adventures.

Darsizzle Offshore using a speargun to catch fish

Image Credit: Darcizzle Offshore

Visit the Pocket Ranger® video channel to watch Darcizzle Offshore bring in the big catch! The video channel is filled with entertainment from contributors like Darcie who are dedicated to showing you a good time and inspiring your next trip. Before you pack your bags and ready your tackle box, download the Pocket Ranger® mobile apps for the latest in travel information, weather, and things to do. The Pocket Ranger® apps are free and fully equipped with GPS features to make your next adventure a stellar one!

Cooking with Adventure Dining Guide

Preparing for vacation just got a bit tastier with the new Pocket Ranger® video channel! Filled with adventure and vacation tips, the video channel makes your travels not only easy but also a lot of fun. Take our contributor Adventure Dining Guide, for example, whose yummy videos can be seen on the channel. Adventure Dining Guide offers great tips for preparing meals during your camping trips through immensely entertaining videos.

Video Credit: Adventure Dining Guide

Adventure Dining Guide, “the website about eating civilized, miles from civilization,” features host Michelle Shea who takes viewers through step-by-step instructions on how to make anything from camping tacos to bonfire brownies. The videos are funny, educational, and sure to make your mouth water. A favorite of ours is the “Fire Ban Tacos” shown above. In this video, Michelle visits Lake Tahoe in the middle of a drought for some good and responsible eating without a fire.

Dining Adventure Guide features adventurers, professional athletes, and chefs who, along with Michelle, demonstrate how easy it is to make nutritious, protein-packed meals with minimal preparation or clean up. In the video below, Richard Orth, owner of BAKpocket Products, teaches you how to make gourmet pesto tortellini while sitting in a hammock in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. YUM! These recipes are so brilliant that they work even if you are looking for a simple dinner or dessert from the comfort of your home.

Video Credit: Adventure Dining Guide

Planning to bring the little ones? Watch “‘Orange’ You Excited to Make Brownies?” below for a genius way to entertain campers of all ages. If you haven’t had enough, follow Adventure Dining Guide on Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter for some of the most appetizing food photos you’ll ever see in the great outdoors! Don’t forget to follow their posts on Google+ and to like them on Facebook as well so you can share your own fireside cooking stories.

Video Credit: Adventure Dining Guide

The Pocket Ranger® video channel and Pocket Ranger® App bring you the best when it comes to preparing for your next outing. Whether you are planning to solo hike the Pacific Coast Trail or take your family out on a weekend canoe trip, Adventure Dining Guide prepares you for a memorable time with fresh tips on dinner and cool desserts. Visit the Pocket Ranger® video channel today, and happy camping!

Telegraph Hiking Club

Now is the time to stay even more connected to the outdoors with the new PocketRanger® video channel! Our contributor Telegraph Hiking Club couldn’t agree more. They’ve already posted how excited they are to share their adventures with you through the video channel on their Facebook page. The PocketRanger® video channel, which is accessible through all PocketRanger® Apps and online, showcases exciting adventures from contributors like Telegraph Hiking Club, whose stories are not to be missed.

Telegraph Hiking Club's logo

Image: http://www.telegraphhc.com/

Telegraph Hiking Club is a Sacramento-based company whose mission is to “explore the most beautiful urban and remote regions of California and the United States.” Over the years, Telegraph Hiking Club has gone on many adventures, allowing members to witness some of the most majestic views in the country, such as the ones seen below from their trip to Grinnell Glacier.

If you’re suddenly feeling inspired to go on a trek of your own, you’re not alone. In fact, so many non-members have expressed a desire to participate in some of the club’s adventures that it became necessary to create TelegraphHC. TelegraphHC is an extension of the original group that publishes trail uploads, videos, and blogs for all outdoor enthusiasts to use as inspiration for their next outdoor venture.

One of the club’s goals is to “share [their] adventures through photographs and video to inspire people to find their own new normal. [They] hope that by sharing [their] shenanigans—good, bad, and indifferent—Telegraph will inspire others to take their daily lives and problems a little less seriously, and spend a day or weekend to examine the beauty of our world from a new perspective.”

Check out the latest on their website, blog, Facebook page, and YouTube channel where Telegraph takes you to the summit with great stories and helpful information on hiking opportunities. And don’t leave home without your very own Telegraph hoodie available only on their website.

Before you get out your hiking poles and lace up your boots, like Telegraph on Facebook, follow them on YouTube, and check out the new PocketRanger® video channel for inspiration on your next trek! And remember to download the PocketRanger® App for the latest in weather, trails, and events happening around your next travel destination!

Pocket Ranger® Video Channel

Pocket Ranger Video Channel Screenshot of Fisherman Wade Rush

We are thrilled to officially announce the launch of the Pocket Ranger® video channel!

While browsing our Pocket Ranger® apps, you may have noticed a link to Outdoor Videos or the Pocket Ranger® channel. If so, congratulations—you’ve found our channel! If you haven’t taken a look yet, be sure to check it out at video.pocketranger.com. With the Pocket Ranger® channel, our goal is to be the premier location for the highest quality videos covering topics and interests about the outdoors. The content is provided by a diverse pool of contributors from across the nation (California, Wisconsin, Florida, and South Carolina), and some videos are specially created just for the Pocket Ranger® channel.

Current topics and categories include:

Current contributors include:

We already have several exciting videos posted on the channel. Here are a few to pique your interest:

Learn how to make damper while camping (or just learn what damper is) from Adventure Dining Guide:

Canoe with Andrew Lin at Mammoth Cave National Park:

Fish for Florida Bass with Darcie Arahill:

Hike to Swiftcurrent Peak with the Telegraph Hiking Club:

As our channel grows, we will be expanding our network of content providers and the topics they cover, so keep an eye out for more videos!

We hope you love the Pocket Ranger® channel as much as we do. Let us know what you think!

Where is the Wise Owl?

Owls are elusive creatures staring into the distance with their bulbous eyes, often exhibiting calmness and continuous reflection. In Greek mythology, the little owl (which actually exists) accompanies the goddess of wisdom, Athena. Throughout history, owls have been used as symbols of wisdom, knowledge and shrewdness. Real world owls don’t disappoint. As birders, we know how difficult it is to spot these often solitary and nocturnal birds, so we ask ourselves: “Where is the Wise Owl?” 

There are 225 owl species in the world and 19 of them are in North America. They can be divided into two family bird classifications: Strigidae, which are true owls, and Tytonidae, barn owls. Most owls are strigidae. Owls typically have an upright stance, a large and broad head, binocular vision, keen hearing, and feathers that allow them to fly in silence. They’re also able to camouflage. Some owls can turn their heads up to 270 degrees, since their large eyes are locked into the skull. The act of looking for owls is called owling. Below is a list of our favorite owls and the states, national parks, and regions where you can find them.

Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl

Image: www.tumblr.com/search/Great+Horned+Owl

This owl is known as the big, scary hoot owl, often seen in Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park. Its intimidating stare, large claws, regal ear tufts and excellent night vision make it a worthy predator, even catching larger raptors like the Ospreys and the Peregrine Falcons. They hunt by perching on high ground then diving down with wings folded, before grabbing their prey. Their strong talons require a force of 28 pounds to open, and they defeat their prey by severing their spine. Great Horned owls prefer to eat rabbits and hares, but will feast on rodents, squirrels, raccoons, and other birds, including crows, turkey, ducks and swans. They can be found in deserts, wetlands, deciduous and evergreen forests, grasslands, backyards, and cities.

Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl

Image: www.tumblr.com/search/Great+Horned+Owl

These snowy creatures are recognizable anywhere with their pale whiteness and striking yellow eyes. They are partial migrants in Alaska’s Denali National Park & Reserve. Unlike other owls, Snowy owls tend to be out during the daytime. Their hunting style is all about waiting, perched atop a fencepost or anywhere with a good view. Prey are captured on the ground, in the air, or snatched from water. These owls are abundant in the arctic tundra or in open grasslands and fields. Generally they don’t frequent forested areas, although they do make appearances on lakeshores, marine coastlines and marshes when migrating south. The Snowy owl is a nomadic bird, going even to northern U.S. when there is excessive cold. Snowy Owls have been spotted in eastern portions of the U.S. during some migratory periods, including New York and New England.

Great Gray Owl

Image: www.tumblr.com/search/great+gray+owl

Image: www.tumblr.com/search/great+gray+owl

This gray giant measures 27 inches long, the largest among its owl friends. It’s a nocturnal owl, but also goes out at dusk and a little before dawn. During breeding season they often roam in the daytime. When flying, they have soft, slow wingbeats, and usually move between short distances, from perch to perch. They frequent coniferous forests along the edge of the Arctic treeline, through spruce and tamarack muskeg forests further south. Foraging occurs in swamps, bogs, and forest clearings where they can find scattered trees and shrubs. Great Gray owls are found in estuaries, mountain meadows, and along farm fields, during migration. The range occurs from Alaska across Canada, down the Northern Rocky Mountains, and northern Minnesota. The Great Gray owl of Yosemite National Park is genetically distinct to other Great Gray owls found elsewhere in the U.S. In total there are at least 8 different owl species in the area.

Northern Saw-Whet Owl

Northern Saw-Whet Owl

Image: www.tumblr.com/search/Northern+saw-whet+owl

At 6 to 7 inches in length, one of the smallest of the group is the Northern Saw-whet Owl, often seen in California’s Redwood National and State Parks. which has a small body, a large rounded head and no ear tufts. Though small, it remains tough when preying on mice and other small mammals such as titmice, chickadees, and kinglets. The saw-whet owls are forests birds that are common across northern North America when breeding. They winter in dense forests across the central and southern U.S. Since Saw-whets are nocturnal, they are hard to see, but their shrill high-pitched too-too-too can serve birders. They prefer mature forests when foraging, deciduous trees for nesting, and dense conifers for roosting with a riverside area nearby.

Elf Owl

Elf Owl

Image: www.tumblr.com/search/Elf+owl

At 5 inches, the Elf owl is a tiny, short-tailed owl with a round head and no ear-tufts. They are nocturnal birds and inhabit arid deserts where saguaro cacti, thorn scrub, and mesquite or deciduous woodlands are abundant. From March until October they are found in Arizona’s Saguaro National Park. They are recognized by their bat-like flying and their high-pitched “whi-whi-whi-whi-whi.” In the face of danger, the Elf Owl straightens its body, covers its lighter parts with one wing, then turns its head and peers over the bent wing with the top of its eyes. They are not confrontational, preferring to stay away than fight. They eat mainly insects and scorpions, sometimes mice or small birds. They range from Southwest USA to Central Mexico, Baja California and Socorro Island. The northern populations winter in Central Mexico.

Suggested Gear List: 

  • Brunton Eterna Compact Binocular
  • Asolo Jumla Hiking Boot
  • Sombrio Windy Pass II Short

Check out our Pocket Ranger® Gear Store for these items and more!

Best Sites to pick up Birding Skills

It’s May, a crucial time for bird watching. Like most birdwatchers you’re probably carrying some handy binoculars and a writing pad down to your favorite park. All around you hear the sounds of birds and the moving of leaves, but you’re not exactly sure how to observe or classify birds in the wild. Even in a small area, a birder can become bewildered with the abundance of bird species, especially without knowing anything other than color to distinguish them. Part of understanding birds is not simply concentrating on exterior colors and shapes; it includes learning about habitat and behavior as well. In doing so, you’ll be able to spot more birds and keep track of them.

Blue Jay

Blue Jays are known for their blue and white plumage, but did you know their favorite food are acorns?      [Image: www.flickr.com]

There are over 800 bird species in the U.S. and Canada. To a beginner, birds flying over quickly can appear to look the same on the surface. In New York alone, there are 253 species, including the Blue Jay, Northern Cardinal, Eastern Bluebird, Black-Capped Chickadee, Downy Woodpecker, American Robin, Song Sparrow, and Mourning Dove amongst the most commonly seen birds. While it’s a good idea to supply yourself with a proper field guide, one can also find birding videos, podcasts and apps. The idea is to learn as you go, but also to get out there and turn a birding day into an adventure. Birding should be primarily simple observation–not tedious memorization.

When starting out, use four key visual categories to identify birds: size/ shape, color pattern, behavior, and habitat. One must also be aware of bird types most likely to roam in a particular location, and at what time of year. Noticing field marks, such as wingbars and eyerings for example, requires careful observation and should be learned after  the four visual keys.

Image: http://jmgkids.us/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/birds_body_parts.jpg

Field Marks [Image: http://jmgkids.us/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/birds_body_parts.jpg]

Here are a few sites where you can freely pick up new birding skills or sharpen your already learned ones.

Inside Birding, a videos series, from the The Cornell Lab Of Ornithology provides helpful tips and techniques for beginners and intermediates to improve visual identification of birds using the four visual keys. Hosted by two birding experts, the series shows their vast knowledge on the subject through clear and informative explanations. If you weren’t already passionate and excited about birding, they’ll surely make it so.

For shorter explanations, Howcast’s birdwatching videos provides a quick way of identifying birds in four steps, similar to the above, though condensed in a minute-long video. These basic videos are great for those not wanting elaborate explanations, but a quick run-down including samples of bird calls.

It takes some birding skills

Would you be able to spot the differences in the wild? [Image: www.flickr.com]

For something a little more thorough and advanced, listen to free podcasts and tutorials from Peterson Field Guide to Birds, which can be downloaded or found on YouTube. The podcast Family Overviews covers birds of the same family group and the characteristics they share. Species Profiles explains the 4 visual keys along with glimpses into migration, distribution and adaptation of popular bird species.

 

If you’re at the level, where you can’t satisfy your need for birding knowledge, Bird Watchers Digest is seriously the place. They have three podcast shows, The Birding Life, The Author’s Spotlight, and Ray’s Talkin Birds–each holding an endless amount of free episodes with such titles as The Snowy Owl Invasion, The Singing Life of Birds, Finding Rare Birds and The Bird Call Lady. And just when you thought birding could not hit closer to reality, an episode called Nature in Iraq comes along.

For something portable, birders can use birding apps as field guides. Pocket Ranger’s Official New York® offers detailed information on New York bird species. The app provides descriptions, distribution area and habitat information along with features like GPS mapping, a built-in compass and distance indicator to help plan your next birding adventure. Pocket Ranger® Fish and Wildlife Apps are also available in Alabama, Wisconsin, Georgia, Nebraska, New Jersey.

Nature is ever so far on this Monday, so we now leave you with a live broadcasting of an Osprey in Maine. Enjoy!

What’s Love Got To Do With It? Weird Animal Mating Habits (VIDEO)

Let’s talk about reproduction in animals. We’re talking about really weird mating habits only Mother Nature herself could’ve created.

Mating habits in animals are highly evolved to be as efficient as possible. If you thought you had tricks up your sleeve, try making your body parts glow in the dark while hanging upside down, twirling with your lover. This is a list of some of the most bizarre mating habits found in the animal kingdom. Proceed with caution.

Leopard Slugs

Slug reproduction may sound a bit repulsive, but it’s actually very intriguing. Lots of chemical processes are involved in their acrobatic love dance, including bioluminescent body parts. This is possibly one of the coolest mating habits in the animal kingdom.

 

Garter Snakes

It’s been said it takes two to tango. With red-sided garter snakes, it takes about 25 to get the job done. During mating season, female snakes give off a pheromone that attracts every Tom, Dick, and Harry in the land. This competition forms what is called a snake ball, where the male snakes try their darnedest to inseminate the female.

 

Praying Mantises

It’s the classic love story: Boy meets girl. Boy woos girl. Girl then eats boy alive. No, we’re not talking about Kim and Kanye: this is the story of the praying mantis. After copulation, the female will do a 180 and eat the male alive. Scientists believe this is not because the female is a heartless shrew, but because the male is the nearest source of nutrients. She’s with children now, so it’s her duty to make sure she is well fed for her babies, even if that means biting the head that helped create the child.

 

Mussels                                                        

The way mussels work is evolution at its best. This has more to do with the distribution of offspring than actual reproduction, but it was too good to leave off the list. These blind creatures somehow evolved to grow a fish-like lure to attract certain types of fish such as largemouth bass. Once the largemouth bass goes for the bait, the mussel shoots its young into the mouth and on the gills of the fish. When the mussels are matured, they fall off and begin their independent lives.