John's Journal...

Secrets of the Duck-Hunting Pros

Snake River Secrets with Thayne Barrie

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: Every day of duck seasonClick to enlarge professional duck guides have to produce ducks for their clients because hunters who have paid their money expect to have ducks in the decoys to take. We’ve interviewed guides from several points of the United States and Canada to learn their secrets. Today, Thayne Barrie of Boise, Idaho, who hunts the Snake River area near Grand View, Idaho, will tell us his duck-hunting secrets.

Barrie explains that, “River hunting is different from most types of duck hunting. When we set up on the river, we look for points. We put goose decoys out in front of and along the two sides of the pointto get the ducks’ attention. We then put out duck decoys on either side of the point in the water and leave an open pocket in the decoys on each side of the point where the ducks can land. Too, unlike most areas, duck hunting in this region doesn’t get good until about 9:00a.m. The ducks are Click to enlargefeeding in nearby grain fields at night and then flying back to the river in the morning. So, our best Click to enlargeshooting on the Snake River generally occurs between 9:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.”

Barrie also mentions that because of hunting pressure, he concentrates on hunting areas without so many hunters – often by floating the Snake River. “We use our duck boats and just drift, heading into offshoot channels and small pockets where the ducks will hole-up and jump-shoot the ducks,” Barrie mentions. “Many of the guides here rent small, aluminum drift boats to hunters who come in from other states. Goldeneyes, which fly about 1 million miles an hour, don’t decoy worth a darn and prefer to remain out in the river, are a very-popular duck on the Snake River.”

Check back each day this week for more about "Secrets of the Duck-Hunting Pros"

Day 1: Jeff Poe of Lake Charles, Louisiana
Day 2: Billy Blakely
Day 3: Barnie Calef
Day 4: Chad Belding and Bob “Rip” Clark
Day 5: Snake River Secrets with Thayne Barrie


Entry 488, Day 5