Interview with Jaeger Rusher of JDR Specialty Tackle & Giveaway

Hey guys!  I am excited to share with you an interview we did with Jaeger Rusher from JDR Specialty Tackle.  We had a lot of success using his lures this year, especially on our Fort Peck trips.

We first heard about these lures because Bob and Jaeger are cousins.  And maybe initially we used the lures because we wanted to support family, but once we used them, we were super impressed and have continued to use them because of them being a superior product.  And, in case you want to try them out, Jaeger has arranged a giveaway for us!  Read through to the end to find out how to enter.

Here’s the interview:

MToutdoorsman: Can you tell us a little about your history with fishing?  Did you start as a kid?  What kindled your passion for fishing?
Jaeger: My history with fishing started out when I was little, around 5 years old, and my father took my brother and I fishing at the causeway [Helena, MT] as well as traveling up into York and fishing Beaver Creek and catching Rainbow Trout with my Nana June. I have been fishing as long as I remember.  I do know that through my high school and early college years I took a break from fishing and maybe only fished up to 10 times a year.
My passion for fishing is not just for catching trophy fish, but catching more fish every time I am out. Again this is “fishing” not “catching” so some days no matter how great of a fisherman you are, the fish just don’t bite!
I prefer fishing over hunting because you cannot see the fish below the surface so it’s always a surprise to see what you reel in. Where as hunting,  you see what’s on the other end of your barrel and scope.
MToutdoorsman: Do you have a favorite fish to catch?  What would be your lure of choice for this fish?
Jaeger: My favorite fish to catch is the Northern Pike, as I love catching these toothy Rob Northernpredators that have the most unique colors and texture for fish. The way a northern pike hits is a true feeling of fight, and when they run and make you play them out, it is always an excitement.
My lure of choice for catching Northern Pike would be using our Spoons, as they have been tested on numerous bodies of water throughout multiple countries and have a proven track record to withstand the 400 plus teeth a pike wants to use on the lure.
MToutdoorsman: What made you want to create a better lure and how did you come up with the idea to coat the lures in the Iron Hide Finish?
Jaeger:The whole iron hide finish and creating a better lure came to me when I pulled over to go fish Lake Helena one late evening and see what I could pull up using a cheap spIMG_20160704_201615oon I bought on closeout at a local sporting goods store. I noticed that, not even 6 casts in, the sticker was already flaking off.  I was a little upset for a $4.00 product. I caught some walleye that night, however, within two hours the spoon was all the way down to its bare metal.
I came up with the idea for the coating and Iron Hide finish through years of studying automotive paint and painting metals and guns.
I really believe in giving people the best product and I myself am never satisfied with a job I have done unless it’s my absolute best. I wanted to create a finish that can withstand the teeth of musky and pike and withstand the rocky shore lines and bottom depths of the lakes and rivers where all other products chip away after just a couple uses.
MToutdoorsman: It seems like most of the people who are part of JDR Specialty Tackle are friends and family, is that the case and can you tell us more about that?
Jaeger: Most people who are part of JDR Specialty Tackle are friends and family. The reason for this is that I wanted to build a family business because I wanted to be able to give back to my family as they always helped me along the way. Our friends really helped out during our initial launch with Cabela’s as we had super late nights, working, packaging and doing seminars.  Without my family and friends I would not be who I am today. They all have been a huge part of my life and are always there willing to help out any way possible.

MToutdoorsman: What has been your favorite part of starting the JDR Specialty Tackle business?  What was your biggest struggle?

Trout on LureJaeger:My favorite part of starting JDR Specialty Tackle was creating or inventing a product that has never been created before. My main goal was to create a product that can help more people catch more fish. To also have the Made in Montana stamp of seal was also part of being my favorite!

The biggest struggle was not even making sure we could keep up with the monster orders, but rather, helping people make a transition from their favorite stick or jerk bait, and trying our spoons and other products.  People assume you don’t catch walleye and trout on spoons, but instead will only catch Northern Pike. That’s why we keep challenging sportsmen to give our products a try.


MToutdoorsman:What do you do when you aren’t fishing?

Jaeger: If I am not fishing, I am thinking about fishing! I really go full force with the innovating and creating of new products, which is truly my passion. So when not on the water I am designing new patterns or working on our clothing line piece by piece.

MToutdoorsman:Finally, what’s your top fishing trip?

Jaeger: My favorite  fishing trip is Last Mountain Lake in Saskatchewan Canada. This is a must add to anyone for their bucket list, and if a person could only fish one lake in their life, this would be the lake to do this at. The fishery up there is phenomenal and the respect they have to preserve their trophy fishery is unlike no other.


 Photo Credits: Jaeger Rusher

MToutdoorsman: Where can people find JDR Specialty Tackle Products?

Check out the sale going on at JDR Specialty Tackle or you can CLICK HERE to see if there is an authorized dealer near you!

Well, we just want to thank Jaeger from JDR Specialty Tackle for visiting with us  and agreeing to do this giveaway!  You can enter to win a JDR Specialty Tackle cap and Jaeger will throw in some spoons to get you started! Enter using the Rafflecopter giveaway below.

The Giveaway!

The Giveaway has ended! The winner was Carrie E. Thank you to all who entered.
a Rafflecopter giveaway








Learn to Hunt Series: I run now because…

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This article is the third in the Learn to Hunt series.

I wanted to talk a little about how I am preparing for hunting season, and life in general, as far as fitness goes.  I started running again in March and I am currently running about 3 1/2 miles three times a week.  Bob and I started eating Paleo, although we still include some dairy.  Basically we have cut out grains (most carbs) and sugar. We do still get to eat treats, we just use Stevia instead of sugar.

Sometimes when I don’t want to get up and go out, or I am having a tough day, it helps me to remind myself why I am out there.  I would encourage you to make a list of why you make the choices you do (or are going to start) to have a healthy lifestyle.  So this is my “I run now…” list.  It’s why I am making the choices I am today because I know it has an impact on tomorrow.

  1. I run now because I don’t want to get left in the dust during hunting season.  The people I will be hunting with are all guys and are all taller than me so I am at a bit of a disadvantage when it comes to covering ground.   In fact in our local circles, it is well known that my dad could out walk a mountain goat when it comes to being in the mountains!  He spends most of his days outside and has a physically demanding job, plus a never quit mentality and it all equals out to him being able to really get going on rough terrain.
  2. I run now because not quitting becomes a habit.  Running (or any consistent physical challenge) really bleeds over into every part of my life.  I not only have more energy and strength, but often I find myself thinking “If I can push through when running is hard, I know I can do ____.”  I am not only training my body, but I am training myself mentally to not say quit.
  3. I run now because I am still working on making good food choices, especially at social events.  I find that when I am consistently running, I don’t want to waste my hard work on eating badly, so it actually gives me pause on some occasions and also helps me put on the brakes when I otherwise might binge on crappy food.  But, there are times when we go to an event and I end up eating dessert or eating some carb-ridden food.  In those cases, I run to help my body use the fats that it had to store because I was overwhelming it with sugars.
  4. I run now because it gives me self-confidence.  Being overweight is an odd situation.  Nobody likes being that way, but it’s a place that we are putting ourselves into. I think that’s why it makes you feel like you want to hide.  It sometimes feels like you are wearing a billboard that says you can’t figure life out, or that you are weak.  But when I started running and eating Paleo, I felt like I finally had control of the state of my health.  I think it gives you a feeling of being strong and able.  Before I started running, I remember talking with Bob and wondering if some people just weren’t meant to run.  Maybe I couldn’t even do it.  And initially it sort of felt like that.  But now it’s so neat to know that I really can do something like this if I keep at it.  Who knows what else I can do?!

Not quitting becomes a habit.jpg

Now, there is even more to this article.  It gets a little long, but I thought I would tack this on here in case you wanted to hear more about what I have done and what I am still working on in my journey to health. I would love to answer any questions or hear any suggestions you might have as well.  So, carry on if you so choose…


Katrina’s Story

I remember from a very young age just feeling cumbersome.  I always had in my head that I was slower and less agile than everyone else. I was also very shy and so intimidated by the fact that I might fail and draw attention to myself that I very rarely had the courage to try athletic feats in sight of anyone.  In grade-school, when we had to run the mile, I refused to run and walked the whole time.  Not because I couldn’t, but because I was too embarrassed to run.  Looking back on pictures, I wasn’t even an overweight child.  I just couldn’t break out of that shell.  I did spend a lot of time outdoors riding my horse, working at the barn or going on walks, so I was fairly healthy.

Then high school hit and I got a job at an old-fashioned drive-thru restaurant.  That was the beginning of my significant weight gain.  We were allowed to have burgers and fries, ice-cream and soda… And so I did.  Especially the soda.  I still rode my horse often and liked being outside, but those activities couldn’t compete with the food I was eating.

After high school I began working as a veterinary technician and was on my feet all the time, plus I would go team roping with some family friends quite often and my diet improved some.  I wasn’t doing too bad, but some of the weight gain stuck with me.

Eventually I met Bob and once we got married we moved into town where he was going to college.  I lost my outlet of going riding and I remember there being a lot of pizza!  By this time I had gone from being 5’5″  and 155 lbs to being around 175 lbs within 3 yrs.  After another 3 years we began having children and I slowly continued to gain weight.  Which leads me to where I am today.  When I weighed myself in January of 2016 I was at my highest, 196 lbs.


Last year I started running using the C25k app.  It slowly builds up the amount of running you do each week until you are able to run a 5k.  I used the app for a couple of months but then stopped. I had gone on a 13 mile hike and let myself “rest” for a few days too long and then just didn’t get back into my routine of running.  I made excuses and we were in the midst of moving to a new house and I just let it slide.  I loved they way I felt when I had gone running though and I had been losing a little weight.  I had also been trying to follow the Trim Healthy Mama Plan , which is a low-glycemic plan, for a couple of years and had finally started sticking with it.  I was feeling so much more energetic because of it too.  In fact, about 6 months prior to that time I had my bloodwork done at my husband’s office when they changed the insurance and my A1C was 8.4, which is diabetic level.  Because of moving to a new town I put off going to a doctor.  By the time I went, I had been running and following the plan for a few months and when they rechecked my blood work, it was entirely normal.  So for the past year I have been mainly following that eating plan. But I have not been exercising consistently and I’ve allowed way too many “treats” into my diet and so I gained back anything I had lost plus a few.

In January, the time of resolutions, Bob talked me into trying the Beach Body 21 Day Fix.  I wasn’t really sold on it, but I wanted to support him so we did it.  I had a really hard time sticking with the little food containers you use to measure your food, and I have to admit, I HATE workout videos!  Bob stuck with it longer than I did, and still uses the videos sometimes when he needs a quick workout but can’t get out.  But that wasn’t a good fit for us.

What has really turned us around now is the fact that Bob was listening to the Gritty Bowman podcast and the Scottish dude on there was talking about how he had lost 50 lbs.  Bob contacted him via Facebook to find out more and received a reply that explained that he was mostly eating Paleo and especially limiting carbs.  Bob wanted to give it a try and it closely resembles the Trim Healthy Mama plan, which I think is really the way to go, so we decided to go for it! We were finally on the same page and committed! For years and years I tried to figure out what to do, what to eat, that would help me be fit and get rid of the excess weight.  I tried really hard and was frustrated that it didn’t seem to make a difference so I would quit trying but wouldn’t quit thinking about it.  Bob and I were talking the other day though about how we wish that we had known how easy it could be years ago.  Between reading the Trim Healthy Mama book and learning more about Paleo, it has really been an eye opening experience.  For years, conventional wisdom has said that you should eat low-fat, lots of “healthy”grains and low-calorie foods.   And it turns out that all of those things are just causing your body to gain unhealthy weight.

I started running again in March and this time a friend agreed to go running with me.  She has been running off and on for years and she’s a lot taller and slimmer than I am.  It helps a lot to have the accountability and someone to push me a little bit when I would wimp out and go slow or just not go at all!  At this time I have finished the C25k app and started using the 10k app.  It’s so awesome to to know that I can ask my body to do something like that and I can do it!

That leaves me to tell you where I am now.  I have lost 16 lbs since we started eating Paleo and I began running again and I can see that my stomach, arms, and legs have slimmed down and I have put on muscle.  I feel more motivated to get out and do things and I am slowly getting more energy.

I really would love to hear what you are doing to prepare for hunting season and to gain health.  You can comment here or join the conversation on our Facebook page!




Summer Fishing Series: Part 1- Fort Peck

We had some great experiences this summer and some of our favorites were the fishing trips.  Good food, good friends, lots of fishing and relaxing.  Rather idyllic actually…

We intended to post updates after each of these trips, but Summer got away from us.  So now you can check them out in this four-part series:  Ft Peck Trip 1(you are here); Ft. Peck Trip 2; Night Fishing/Perch Fishing, and Salmon fishing off the Oregon Coast.

Here’s Bob to fill us in on some of the highlights of the first Fort Peck Trip.

Part 1: Fort Peck, Montana in June

During the first part of June, my father (Nick), his friend (Cheri), and I made a trip to the biggest lake in Montana.  We were planning on spending five days on the water learning and catching fish in one of the best fisheries Montana has to offer.


Dad and Cheri met me at my house so I could  follow the truck/camper and boat combination.  After staying the night at a place about half way to the lake, we arrived about mid day to find our camping spot.  We spent the rest of the day setting up camp and getting my truck hooked up to the Lund boat my dad had purchased the year before.

That evening at dinner we were surprised to learn we did have data for our phones so we would be able to look at the fishing report.  After learning they were catching the fish in about 5-15 feet of water with green bottom bouncers, we thought we were set.

Day 1:

We were up early and got out onto the lake.  With Fort Peck having more shoreline than the entire West Coast, we really had a lot of options on where to start.  We decided to go across the lake to a spot around some islands.

After about 25 minutes of motoring across the lake and we were finally fishing.  I set up my bottom bouncing rig and got started.  About 20 minutes later after finding the fish, I finally got my first hit.  Although it wasn’t a good fish, it was a walleye and it was the first one on Peck!

About an hour later I was able to hook into another walleye, and then was followed by another.  That first day was kind of slow.

Bob Walleye


Day 2:JDR Lures

We decided that we would go further down the east arm and see what we could find.  After riding a bit further in the boat, we set up the bottom bouncing rig and then had another couple of walleye.

Not really getting into the walleye we were hoping for, I decided to test out the spoons I had purchased from JDR Specialty Tackle.  I was quickly rewarded with my first Pike and  Bass! These were caught by tossing them towards shore and then a slow retrieve back to the boat.  A couple of pike that day were also caught by trolling the spoons behind the boat while using the bottom bouncers.

We weren’t having the walleye we were looking for so we decided to move down the other side of the East arm.  I decided I was going to change it up though.  I had been using night crawlers on my bottom bouncer rig up to that point, but decided to try out minnows.  I put one on.  After about an hour of trolling the line went taut!  I ended up catching my biggest walleye to date!  It was about 5 lbs and ended up being the fish of the day.

Bob with Big Walleye

Day 3: Another spot

Since the previous day landed some great fish on that side of the lake, we decided to go down the east arm again.  After fishing for awhile we finally landed on the large amount of Walleye that Ft. Peck is known for. We were using a green bottom bouncer and we hit them hard.

We caught quite a few little walleye and some great eaters.  After awhile the fishing for the walleye went dead.  We decided that it was time to try some of the bays for the pike that might be lurking around.

Moving closer to the very north part of the lake, we were once again using the spoons I had purchased the prior week.  They didn’t disappoint.  We caught a few more pike and this wrapped up day 3.

Bob with Pike

Day 4: The game is on.

Knowing where we left the walleye the day before, we moved out to the same spot.  They were there again, and after about 6 hours of great fishing, we decided it was time to try the pike again.

This time the pike were unbelievable!  Cheri ended up catching a 9 lb pike and another 5 lb pike.  My Dad caught a good sized one that he ended up letting go since we had two good pike in the boat.

Bob & Cheri with Pike

Day 5: last half day

We needed to leave at about 1 to be able to get home, so we decided we would try for the pike one last time.  We went out to where we had caught those pike the day before but nothing was happening.  I finally dug it out, the box of lures my Dad had taken to Canada some 30 years prior.

I used one of the big poppers that moved quite a bit of water.  It was so crazy that I didn’t think it would work.  My Dad took a video of it because it was so loud.  I have attached a link to that video here.

Just after the video ended, a big pike hit the lure!  I was able to get him just about to the boat and he then made a second run and when he did this he was able to spit the hook. We were so bummed as this was the only fish we had hooked that morning.

I switched lures again and we made a round by the same spot.  This time no dice, but I did happen to see quite a few bass underneath the boat.

I told my Dad to pull one of the minnows out and put in on a light action rod with just a hook and a small split shot.  Within five minutes he had a great bass!  Both Cheri and I made the switch to the same set-up (not wanting to end up skunked) and a couple of minutes later Cheri had her bass.  Finally, I ended up with the same result.

It was quite fun as with those light action rods, the bass were able to make quite a few runs before they were brought up to the boat.

All in all this was a great trip with great memories!  We were able to discover and learn about this fishery and know what to do the next time we return.

Nick & Bob with Pike



Learn to Hunt Series: Resources

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I am on a mission to improve my hunting and outdoor skills and the best way I can think of to do that is to take advantage of the knowledge that others are willing to share.  So I am going to read books, talk to people, listen to podcasts, watch videos, and more!  And I am going to share with you when I find great resources.   I will be applying this knowledge as I go, so watch for updates on that as well.

Books 1.jpg

Today I am going to give you a list of the resources I am going to start with.  Some of them require purchasing and others are free.


Free Resources

Articles from of Elk Hunting)

Videos from

Gritty Bowmen Podcasts These guys are super entertaining and have interviewed a huge variety of people with various skills and experiences.  These are fun and informative to listen to.

Hunt Backcountry Podcast

Full Draw Podcast

To Purchase:

University of Elk Hunting Online Course : We just signed up for this course this fall and Bob has really been getting a lot from these classes.  I am just starting them, but it has been great to see Bob making some connections to previous hunts that didn’t quite go the way he wanted to how this information can help him in the future.  Plus, we get to hear him practice his cow calls for at least an hour every night…

He has some information available for free on his site and you can find those links up above.

If you decide to sign up, they have a referral program and we would really appreciate if you let them know we sent you!  You can fill in the referral info with our e-mail,

*Update: Corey set us up with a discount code for you guys!  The course retails at $99 but if you enter MTO30 you can get it for just $69.  You can sign up HERE or if you want to read more about what the course offers, you can go HERE

The Total Outdoorsman Manual (Field & Stream) I got this book as gift from Bob last year and have really enjoyed reading it.  And sometimes I have to go steal it back from my nine year old daughter’s shelf because she likes to read the survival section!  My plan is to put feet to the information and possibly get out once a week with the kids and try out some of the skills it teaches.
Backcountry Bowhunting: A Guide to the Wild Side  Bob picked up this book and I have been needing to take the time to read it for awhile.  It was a very inspiring read for Bob and  it goes over a lot of interesting subjects like backcountry hunts and  the physical conditioning needed to get back where you need to go and still be able to make it out. I have to admit I am really excited to read about his training plan!

I would love to hear any suggestions you guys have.  Whether it be your own advice or suggestions on where to go to find great information. I look forward to your response in the comments or join us on Facebook to discuss it.


Learn to Hunt Series: Intro

Hey everyone! It’s Katrina here. I wanted to tell you a little bit about a blog series I am going to start.  It’s going to be all about my journey as I learn more about how to hunt and fish and how to increase my fitness level to increase my capabilities in the field.  I grew up in a family where my dad and brother went hunting and fishing but I did more observing than actually experiencing these things for myself. I did a couple of easy deer hunts, shot a lot of gophers and really loved rifle club, but I want to find out what it means to gain the skills necessary to go on some serious hunts and take care of myself when we go fishing.

I hope you will follow along. I will be sharing great resources, tips and fun stories!  It doesn’t matter if you are a guy, a gal, a newbie or experienced outdoorsman, I think you will be able to get a lot out of this.

Here’s a list of articles you can look forward to:

Learn to Hunt Series: Resources

Learning From the Best: An Interview with my Dad

Archery Class

I Run Now Because…(I Don’t Want to Get Left in the Dust During Hunting Season)

I’m a Wimp and I Think It’s Gross to Put Worms on a Hook

Learning How to Process Game

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