The 2011 Indiana Predator Challenge, held February 4th-6th was another successful, safe and fun event for all in attendance! This year we once again expanded the IPC event and its reach across the community. Despite a week full of blizzards, ice storms and power outages nearly 90% of our hunters made it to Friday’s sign-in. Many teams showed up early to meet and greet other competitors before the 11am shotgun start.
The 2011 IPC started off under bluebird skies and mild temperatures but no one expected that to hold up long! Friday evening’s fair weather gave way to sleet and snow overnight. Teams scattered out in areas spanning as much as 100 miles en route to areas they’d scouted previously or located with aerial photos. One of the first reports back to headquarters, just hours after the kickoff, was that of a bobcat coming in on a team’s 2nd stand of the hunt. Lifetime residents of Indiana, this was the crew’s first encounter with a bobcat!
Later in the evening a couple of coyotes fell, one gray fox was put down overnight, and four teams found themselves on the scoreboard coming into Saturday’s check-in. Saturday Check-In Totals: Long Shots: 1pt -Coyote Tail Chasers: 3pts -Coyote & Gray Fox Predator X: 1pt -Coyote Flat Liners: 1pt -Coyote
Saturday afternoon brought big wet snowflakes and a cold breeze so hunters were glad to congregate indoors for a meal. This year’s lunch was prepared by Master Chef Larry Jean from Louisiana and his son Paul who came in from Australia to help out by-way-of Mississippi. These guys travelled for the better part of two days to provide our hunters with some phenomenal BBQ pork ribs and tenderloin. They did a wonderful job and their effort is greatly appreciated!
After filling up on BBQ, corn, taters and dessert teams shuffled outside for the 6th Annual IPC Rifle Contest. It seems lately everyone has figured out what to expect from the IPC Rifle Contest, nothing less than the unexpected! Some shooters struggled to initiate targets while others simply couldn’t acquire the ones that appeared right in front of them! The first ten shooters marked scores of 0/5 and 1/5 as driving snow blew in from down-range.
When the shooter from “Predator X” came up to the plate, a team with 2 Rifle Contest wins under their belt in previous events, the crowd knew some targets were going to fall. 3/5 was the benchmark set in just over 49 seconds. The next shooter failed to locate a single target, or fire a single round, but the following shooter would surprise us all! 3/5, including one running target, went down in just under 48 seconds securing the 2011 Rifle Contest win for the first time entry “Tail Chasers”. Rifle Shoot: Tail Chasers: 3/5 in 48.4 Seconds = 2pts Predator X: 3/5 in 49.2 Seconds= 1pt
Saturday afternoon was fairly productive for the rejuvenated teams. The 2010 Champions “Predator X” scored another coyote as did the “Flat Liners” who were sitting pretty in 2nd place by nightfall. Overnight, with time winding down, another team put themselves in contention by scoring their first points of the weekend. The “Pardners” called up a nice Red Fox, worth 2 points, and knew that one more critter could put them in contention for 2nd place. It was simply too close to call, with only hours remaining in the hunt.
As daylight came on Sunday morning, several teams knew they had a reasonable shot at placing if they could just get in ONE productive stand! The Flat Liners felt like any animal they added to the scoreboard would secure them a victory: so they were elated when a coyote trotted up to the call for a 30 yard shot just before check-in! Little did they know, the “Tail Chasers” had struck gold just before daylight… with another Gray Fox for their tally! Sunday Check-In Totals: Pardners: 2pts -Red Fox Tail Chasers: 2pts -Gray Fox Predator X: 1pt -Coyote Flat Liners: 2pts -2 Coyotes
When the dust settled, all teams were signed in, and all animals were inspected: a new set of Champions would be crowned! Not only did they tie the previous record for total points in a contest, and win the 6th Annual Rifle Contest, the “Tail Chasers” managed to dominate their FIRST EVER APPEARANCE in the IPC event. This just goes to show you, it’s anybody’s game! 2011 Indiana Predator Challenge Champions – “Tail Chasers” 2011 Indiana Predator Challenge Runner Up – “Flat Liners”
Congratulations to all the successful hunters and thanks again to the staff for their hard work! Registration for the 2012 Indiana Predator Challenge will open on July 15th, 2011. We will be hosting another “Summer Shindig” on the weekend of July 15th-16th where teams can register, visit with other participants, and bring their families along for some great food and activities! More details about the 2011 Summer Shindig will be available on www.TheNPHA.com/events
as they are finalized.