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    Categories: AdventuresFirst-timersFunHabitatHowHuntingUtah

Upland game slams

The Division of Wildlife Resources and several sponsors are excited to offer a new program this year: the Utah Upland Game Slam.

In addition to an unforgettable experience and the opportunity to put delicious food on the table, the Slam Program offers rewards to hunters who are successful in harvesting various upland game species.

The upland game slam coins.

Examples of this year’s slams include the Long Tail Slam, Blister Slam, Mountain Slam, Desert Slam, First Feather or Fur Slam, and the most difficult, the Utah Upland Game Grand Slam. See a full list of the slams, along with rules and other details, at http://wildlife.utah.gov/uplandslam.

Avery Cook and Jason Robinson — both ardent upland game hunters and DWR employees — plan to write about their experiences as they attempt to complete the slams. Jason will use his two hunting dogs and Avery will be solo. Here’s what they have to say:

Jason: I’m an avid upland game hunter and love new challenges that lead to thrilling adventures. I have traveled all over Utah hunting upland game. My favorite part is watching my two bird dogs, Trigger the brittany and Gauge the yellow lab, hunt for wild game birds.

One of Jason’s hunting dogs, Gauge.

Watching the dogs I’ve trained and spent countless hours with doing what they were meant to do is extremely enjoyable to me. I’m excited about the Upland Game Grand Slam, 15 different species all within Utah. The diversity and varying habitats will be extremely challenging for the dogs and me.

Each species of upland game in Utah is unique and habitat specific, and will take me from 2,000 feet elevation in the Beaver Dam Wash for Gambel’s quail, up to 13,000-foot peaks in the Uinta Mountains for white-tailed ptarmigan; I can’t hardly wait!

Avery: I love upland game hunting because of the diverse areas it leads me — places I wouldn’t have discovered otherwise. I also enjoy the challenge of learning each species’ unique biology and habitat preferences, which I use to locate animals on the landscape.

Throughout my time hunting upland game in Utah, I have been to the backcountry of the Bear Rivers to the lowlands of the West Desert and many places between. I am looking forward to the challenge of completing this year’s slams and to the multi-year journey of completing my grand slam, visiting new places and seeing all kinds of wildlife along the way.

Look for follow-up posts from Jason and Avery once the season is complete! For more details on the slam, have a look at this news release.

Crystal Ross :Crystal Ross is a writer on the Communications Team at the DWR Salt Lake office. She's an outdoors enthusiast and feels lucky to live in a state with such diverse and beautiful wildlife.