Category Archives: Blog

September 2018 Newsletter

​​​​​​​​​​9-17-18

Eagle Lakers,

The countdown is on!! It’s just under a month until opening day and we are already starting to see a great local hatch of ducks that will hopefully carry us through until the first mass migration from Canada arrives.

The corn crop look great and the boys will start flooding the ponds next week to let the quackers get nice and comfortable before the opener.  The lodge and the rest of the ranch is in pristine condition as always.  All of the blinds have been camouflaged except for a couple of new ones that still need to be put in place.  All of the hard work on the new projects should have immediate results, they are gorgeous!

We still have some great lodging dates available in late October, before and after Thanksgiving and Christmas, as well as dates throughout January.  Call Kaci to get those last rooms snagged up! Drive direct hunters, we still have plenty of availability on some fantastic dates…get your spot reserved today!!

Ryan and I are off to Canada for 3 and ½ weeks of amazing fun.  Follow us on facebook for some great pictures and updates of how things are going up there.  If the hunting is anything like it usually is, there should be some happy campers with limits of mallards and giant honkers in their bag.

Dove hunting was very good.  We harvested over 2,500 doves in the first 10 days of the season with over a 1,000 on the first day alone.

Salmon trips: Call the lodge if you are interested in any fishing before the season or if you would like to upgrade to the blast and cast combo package!!

We are looking forward to getting our season rolling with some amazing friends.

Happy Hunting,

Michael J. Bernsen

Spring Newsletter

Eagle Lakers,

Exciting news around here!!  We have hired a new guide on May 10th @ 4:13 a.m., weighing 7 lbs 7 oz 21” long.  Brayden Michael Bernsen arrived in this world and signed his first free agent contract, with Ryan and Jess’s approval, his employment start date will be 9-1-2030.  If he’s anything like his daddy, 12 yrs old should be perfect to start taking out duck and goose hunters.  Mom and baby are doing Fabulous.

 

The first wave of our pre-bookings have now been confirmed and are in the books.  Thank you to all who booked their trips before they departed from their hunts last season.  This is so helpful moving forward into the next season having over 50% of our dates already spoken for.

We’re headed to California on the first of June to continue our sales season and attending the Suisun Marsh Day on Saturday June 2nd.  If any of you are going to be around make sure you stop by the booth and say hi or if you have some dates in mind we will get you signed up.  This is always one of our favorite trips of the year.

For our instate hunters it’s time to start picking out your dates.  There are lots of good cycles where there are single dates or several days in a row that we can fill in and accommodate you for both lodge package hunts or drive direct hunts.  We also encourage those who want to be on call for “Short Notice Trips” to let the office gals know so we can call you when we have too many birds and not enough shooters.  We have also picked up some more extraordinary goose leases that should provide some excellent opportunities to whack some geese after your limit duck hunt.

We have a new calendar on our website that will help show what dates we have available as far as lodging.  It will be updated daily.  You will still have to call the office to make all reservations.  This is the link to our new calendar  https://teamup.com/ksabpv16notce7ccqi.  Once you have it pulled up, click on month on the top right, then on the top left find the month you are interested in.  We hope this will help everyone find the exact dates they need.

As of now we have about 75% of all the corn planted on the farm as well as in all the ponds.  We still have some wet areas that we use a shorter variety of corn that will be planted within the next few weeks.  We also still have to plant all the new projects.  We started out thinking we were going to just make (1) really nice new corn pond this year but we decided to get a little more aggressive.  We made several areas about 3-4 times as big as they were and another beautiful new pond is almost finished.  Warm water flowing through flooded corn and surround by thick Russian olive trees for a nice quiet, secluded little honey hole.  Most of our new habitat projects have been homeruns, but we have one new spot that has grand slam written all over it!!!!

NOTE:  A couple of changes from the state on our calendar.  October 18-19 are now duck hunting days and the new CLOSURE DATES ARE NOVEMBER 1-2!!  November 12th is a goose and duck day.

The Fishing on our private lakes has been amazing.  We had a corporate retreat/birthday party go out on Saturday for a few hours. 11 guests caught 91 largemouth, 141 smallmouth, and 6 walleye, that Bonnie and Betty created some yummy appetizers out of, before their prime rib feast.  If anybody is interested in doing a retreat or just bringing the family over for some great food and wonderful fishing action contact the girls @ the lodge and they can get you hooked up.

Dove hunting is just a few months away, starting Saturday September 1st.  We will be blasting away like always.  It’s been a long time since I’ve seen so many doves this early, they are everywhere.  With the Eurasian Doves in the mix the last few years and the extended season we should have quality dove action right through the first of October.  The Dove hunting is very user friendly price wise and we always have great specials for the kids.

I hope everyone has a great summer and quality family time coming up soon.  It’s only 143 days until opening day and we can’t wait to get the season started.  The duck and goose numbers look very strong and all signs point to a very successful 2018-2019 Season!!

 

MJB

 

February 2017 Newsletter

End of Season Newsletter ​​February 1, 2018
Eagle Lakers,
​The season just wrapped up on Sunday and all the fun is over. Now the hard work begins. The guides are already back at it after a couple days off. They will be filling in goose pits the rest of the week. Then they move into going through equipment, repairing decoys and blinds, and storing everything until next season. Draining ponds and dike repairs are right around the corner. Before you know it, they’ll be prepping the fields and planting corn will be on the agenda. I don’t know if everyone realizes how hard the staff works to provide you the incredible experience that we offer year in and year out. It all starts with my guides. They work their tails off all spring and summer to have the properties in pristine condition for the upcoming season. Then they go 100+ days with only a day or two off. They’re truly an amazing bunch, including our part time guys who save their vacation days to help out when we are really busy, to be at our disposal for all weekends. My office staff is also incredible. The job Kaci does with reservations, accounting, and guest accommodations is second to none. She also manages the whole lodge including our chefs, servers, housekeeping and David our bird processor. Her assistant Becky comes in when hunting season starts and brings a tremendous amount of energy and passion to her job. Betty and Bonnie are responsible for preparing all the delicious meals served each day at the lodge; we received more compliments on our food this year than ever before! Keep up the good work ladies!! The lodge is always beautiful and clean thanks to our tres Marias. Maria G., Maria H., and Maria R., (aka cookie) have been our housekeepers for years and continue to be a hard working and loyal crew. David and his helpers make sure your birds are cleaned and processed to your specification, and then vacuum sealed for easy transport back home. With a 16,000 square foot building quite a bit of maintenance is required. That’s where Scott comes in! His knowledge and handiness are greatly appreciated around a place in need of weekly upkeep. Lennie our night lady has been with us for 14 seasons and is the lovely voice behind your wake-up calls and sweet smile serving your breakfast each morning. She’s very social and loves to chat with, and learn about our customers…a staff favorite for many of our long-time customers. Last but not least we decided to run with a small, but very reliable team of servers this year. We have gotten great reviews on the job that Billie, Alla, Becky, Kaci, Carson and Carly did. I would like to personally thank each and every member of our staff that makes our family business what it is.
2017-18 Season at a glance:
October- Very few non-limit shoots for the month. With an excellent local hatch and an early migration, the shooting couldn’t have been any better.
*Observation: We only wish we would have had more duck hunters in the last week of October with as many birds as we were holding. There were also numerous cycles where we could have ran another 2-3 goose hunts a day.
November- Ducks and Geese were unbelievable!! We had our strongest November in several years. Most of the hunts lasted less than 2 hours, with lots of shooters electing to upgrade to a combo hunt if they weren’t already signed up for one. We were extremely busy this month, with lots of happy folks that went home with a bunch of ducks and geese to munch on throughout the year.
*Observation: There were some excellent dates in early November still available. The guests that were here enjoyed a quiet lodge and tons of birds. I would suggest to anyone wanting to hunt with a little less pressure and not as many bodies in the lodge to look into these dates. The second week in November through Christmas is always our busiest time.
December- We started off the first few days of the month with great duck shoots. Starting on December 4th the hunting over the next few weeks could only be described as streaky. We were still having some quality hunts, but way too many tough hunts mixed in. We were also having to work at it morning and afternoon to salvage some groups hunts. Thankfully the goose shooting was epic for the most part. After harvesting a ton of lessers early in the season, we slammed the honks all month long. The fantastic goose hunting helped take some of the pressure off when ducks were looking slim.
*Observation: Don’t change a thing!! This is always one of our busiest cycles and we normally have incredible duck shooting this month. A bright full moon from Hell, accompanied with no wind and stagnate weather made for uncharacteristically challenging days. The ducks just loafed around all day and then started moving just before or right after shooting hours.
January- The hunting in January was good for both ducks and geese. We had some cycles that were fast a furious and others where we worked at it all day to get our clients into some birds.
*Observation- After last years cold weather with snow and ice storms right on top of each other, this January was a good month. I would have liked to see the birds work a little better down the stretch with the 40-50 degree temps and lots of open water.
Prices- There will be no changes in pricing for the 2018-19 season.
Cancelations and Rescheduling- This was one of our most difficult years with short notice cancelations. We are always so accommodating and try to find alternate dates for guests who have to reschedule for legitimate reasons. Please be aware that when we move your dates and reschedule you for later in the season we are taking away availability from another group being able to book, therefore effecting our revenue. For example when one guys stubs his toe and can’t make it, that doesn’t mean the other 5 in the group can’t come. For the 2018-19 season we are going to enforce our policy as it is written on the confirmation sheet that is to be signed and returned. If you lose a hunter from your group it is your responsibility to find a replacement. Those groups that want to reschedule when it’s short notice and we have no way to fill those dates will only be allowed to do so if its really a family emergency. We had several time periods where we were busier than I wanted to be because of rescheduling issues.
Deposits- We are already over 50% booked for the 2018-19 season for lodge package hunts. For those of you who already have your dates picked out, Kaci will be charging credit cards or accepting checks starting in mid-March; sooner if you call in and give her the go ahead. For those of you who haven’t picked out your dates I would jump on it as soon as possible!
Specials- Drive direct hunters please check out our newsletters or Facebook for up to the minute hunting reports and specials. There are occasions where we have a hole in the schedule and need to get some spots filled. Another idea that worked out great this season for a lot of customers was requesting to be put on our short notice list. This is where you request a call if we have a lot of birds around, but not a lot of bodies to defend the properties!
New Projects- We have two new corn ponds that will be ready by the season opener for some amazing action. They are located right in the heart of some of our already existing homerun projects that you know and love. We are also working on several new goose leases that will be excellent additions to our existing repertoire of existing properties.
New Properties- Our new series of corn ponds were an overwhelming success. The birds decoyed in there as well as I’ve seen ducks decoy, including in the triangle when its on fire. A lot of the ducks didn’t even circle, they just dropped right in your face. We had some awesome feedback from some guests that have been hunting with us for many years, that it was the best duck hunt they’ve ever had.
Doves- September 1st is the opener and there will be non-stop action as always! Great for the kids getting out and getting comfortable with a firearm in their hands. We will shoot morning hunts and afternoon as well.
Deer- Archery and Modern Firearm
Ryan only has a few available dates so please get in touch with him soon if you are planning a trip. The success rate is always very high and quality animals is the norm with a Brute or two harvested every year.
Eagle Lakes Alberta- Grand Prairie duck and goose combo hunts are getting very popular with our clients. Hunt ducks in the morning and geese in the afternoon or shoot limits over the same decoys in the pea and barley fields. Ryan does a phenomenal job up there and the prices are so reasonable for our Eagle Lakes customers. The Peace River Country is world famous for giant honkers and tons of mallard and pintail. The best part is, it’s their first exposure to man. The birds decoy so nice up there, that several of my long-time clients are going to Canada with Ryan and have cut out one of their annual two trips normally spent at Eagle Lakes.
Ryan- (509)528-8754 or ryanbernsen@yahoo.com
Shooting Lessons- The boys and I are in early discussions about having a couple of weekends during the summer where you could come over and get some pointers for the upcoming season. We guarantee you will be knocking down some birds at a much higher rate. We will mix in some fishing for bass, walleye, or salmon as well. It will be user friendly so the whole family could come along. If anyone is interested please contact the office and we will get some dates figured out.

I will have your Eagle Lakes Calendar done in a month or so, but Kaci already has the books put together now and she is taking reservations for the upcoming season. Opening day is Saturday October 13th, 2018. We would also like to get your feedback on what you think is working well and what you think we could improve on. We genuinely value and appreciate our customers and want to do our best so that you can have the most enjoyable experience possible. Please email us at eaglelakes@cbnn.net with your thoughts!

Thank you all for your continued support of the Bernsen Family and the entire Eagle Lakes Team.
Regards,
Mike

December Newsletter

END OF DECEMBER NEWS LETTER
Happy New Year Eagle Lakers, January 2, 2018
Streaky is the only way to describe December. The first 2 ½ weeks of the month is one of our busiest cycles of the year and normally one of our most productive. The ducks definitely had the advantage, clear, cold stagnate weather made for some long days in the field. On these birdie blue days the ducks sometimes didn’t even move until the afternoon time. The Quackers were on their time, mostly just loafing on big water and moving around when they wanted to. We still had lots of good quality hunts during this time period but just too many slow ones for my liking. When we finally got the weather back in our favor we pounded them good. The last week of December was fabulous with a lot of quick limits on Mallards. Let’s hope we can keep this rolling through January.
GOOSE shooting was a nice relief for a lot of our hunters who struggled with the duck hunting being so tough for part of the month. We hammered the honkers on most days even when the conditions were tough we battled and got our guys in to birds. The geese have been pounding the winter wheat fields and are off the corn program the last week or so for the most part. I was pleased at how well they decoyed considering the weather. My guides were putting them right in the hole 20-25 yards backwinging. We also had some excellent combo shoots over water where we harvested both ducks and geese over the same spread of decoys.
If you’re still thinking about a January hunt, I would get right on it. We have almost no lodging available except the last week of the season. For example a few dates available are:
• January 21 2 rooms left plus 4 bedroom auxiliary housing
• January 22 1 room left plus 4 bedroom auxiliary housing
• January 23 3 rooms left plus 4 bedroom auxiliary housing
• January 24 7 rooms left plus 4 bedroom auxiliary housing
• January 25 11 rooms left plus 4 bedroom auxiliary housing
• January 26 10 rooms left plus 4 bedroom auxiliary housing
There are still a few drive direct duck hunting dates available and we can take a bunch of goose shooters down the stretch.

*Note: We are already over 50% booked on lodging dates for the 2018-2019 season. Kaci has all the books ready to go for reservations were not charging credit cards for deposits until March 1, 2018. I hope this makes it easier to get your dates confirmed and put your groups together.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Mike Bernsen

Opening weekend 2017 Newsletter

Eagle Lakes 2017 Opening Newsletter
October 16, 2017
Eagle Lakers,
What a great way to start the 2017 season, 40 limits by 9 AM!! Backed that up with a great Sunday 36 limits out of 41 shooters. Had a couple groups that had to hit the road before we could get them taken care of. We also ran 2 afternoon shoots on Sunday that limited by 5 PM. Monday morning started off a little slow for most of the groups but everybody was getting close, by midday. Looks like we might have to run one afternoon hunt. One group shot their 21 ducks in about 10 minutes this morning. Some of the guides kids and Grandkids got to whack a bunch of Mallards this weekend as well. Harvested almost 700 ducks in the first few days. This is the best local hatch of ducks we’ve had in a long time.
We still have some great dates available for both hunting as well as lodging during these cycles. Don’t be disappointed, get your trip booked now!! Call the office for dates!
Goose shooting
The migratory lessers have been arriving the last few days. There is also a tremendous amount of local honkers around that should produce some great goose shooting or a nice alternative for a combo hunt after you have limited on ducks. Most of the corn is just being harvested now and the winter wheat and triticale is going in right behind the potato crops. We are putting in a bunch of new pits in some great locations for some bang up hunts to come.
Grande Prairie Alberta
The shooting in Canada was nothing short of phenomenal. We Limited on ducks and geese every day but two and they were still dynamite hunts. We had 7 days where we limited on both ducks and geese by 11 AM in some fresh cut peas. The duck hunting over water was outstanding as well. Our last few duck hunts lasted less than an hour. Ryan is booking for 2018 right now so if you are interested contact him directly @ 509-528-8754 or ryanbernsen@yahoo.com
Lodge
Here at the lodge we got brand new beds and pillows for your comfort. New bedding is also on its way that was back ordered. The floors were completely re done and shining like new. Brand new carpet is in the works just running a little behind. We built a new cabinet to hold our new 80” TV which is being installed next week. That way we all can enjoy some college football games. The whole facility looks outstanding. Kaci and Becky will take care of all your scheduling needs. Happy to announce all our great servers have returned.
Food
Betty and Bonnie are back again creating some delicious meals with great presentations. The reviews were overwhelming opening weekend. The girls will be happy to share some of their fabulous duck and goose recipes for your enjoyment at home as well. Can’t wait to see all of you soon and thanks as always for your support.

Michael J Bernsen Owner
Please follow us on facebook, Ryan is doing an excellent job of updating daily. You can follow hunting results and migration patterns as they unfold.

Summer newsletter 2017

Eagle Lakes Ranch Summer News ​​​7-11-17
Eagle Lakers,
I hope everyone is having a wonderful summer. After an extremely cold, blustery winter and a lousy spring our weather has heated up. We have been in the 90’s to low 100’s for a couple weeks now. The warm nights have created ideal growing conditions and the corn is thriving! Along with the ranch, several surrounding farms have planted corn this year which will make for some happy ducks.
Its only 95 days until the duck opener. It will be here before you know it. We are very optimistic about the duck hunting this season. We are seeing a very nice local hatch and our birds from the North should be right on time. The addition of several new properties will complement the already tremendous Eagle Lakes Ranch properties should make for a banner year. One new leased property is a series of ponds with hot water that flows through and recirculates back in. The best news is that it is only about 15 minutes from the lodge and had record breaking harvest numbers from the 2016-17 season. We can’t wait to see it in action ourselves!
Goose hunting has been outstanding the past few seasons. The crop rotation on our key farms looks great (lots of corn and wheat). Several groups have booked for combo hunts already, but we still have a lot of open dates to take more goose hunters. There are more geese in the Columbia Basin than ever before. The state has determined that for the 2017-18 season you don’t have to count any snows or specklebellies in your 4 goose limit on Canadian honkers and lessors. In our flyway we are harvesting mostly giant honkers and some lessors, but we’re seeing more and more other species.

Open Lodge Dates: We still have a few rooms here & there but they’re filling fast!!
October 17th
October 20th-25th (great local duck shooting and huge honkers)
October 31st-Nov 2nd
November 4th-6th (Northern birds just arriving)
November 14th-16th (Premium dates, large group had to reschedule)
November 19th-21st (fabulous hunting right before Thanksgiving)
November 26th and 27th
December 18th
December 20th-22nd (Hunting won’t get any better than this cycle)
December 30th and 31st
January 7th-11th
January 14th and 15th
January 23rd-27th (last available shooting cycle)
*Drive direct hunting specials*
All hunters who book during these cycles will be charged $300 (no tax) and all kids 18 and under will be $175 (no tax) with a paying adult. It doesn’t get any better than this! Please book by October 1st 2017 to take advantage of these amazing specials.
November 9th-13th
November 29th-December 2nd
December 12th-17th
January 2nd-6th
January 16th-20th

Puppies: $1,500
We only have 2 pups left (all females) one yellow and one black from Ryan’s dog Nuke and Bo Silvers outstanding Female. These pups should be unbelievable hunting dogs. Great Parents and hard charging hunting machines should make for a great combo. Contact Bo directly @ 509-572-8540 if interested.
Doves-
Opening day is 52 days away. We are almost completely booked for the first few days and then it opens up a bit. What a great way to get the season started. We see the same faces coming back year after year. I would like to see some new faces come over and give it a try, you will be hooked for life. Dove hunting is so much fun, lots of birds and plenty of shooting. After opening weekend we are going to run a kids ½ off special for the rest of the season. It’s short sleeve weather and tons of fun!! We have a variety of groups that mix in fishing trip combos with it because the doves are so fast and furious.
Fishing-
The boys have been clobbering the Bass-Walleye-Salmon on almost all trips. If interested please contact the office right away, you won’t be disappointed.
Alberta Hunting-Grand Praire Alberta
Ryan still has a few open dates for Canada for combo mallard and honker hunting. He’s pretty much got the program dialed in. He only had a couple dates last season where his clients didn’t limit on both ducks and geese. You owe it to yourself to get up there at least once!!!!
Contact Ryan @ 509-528-8754 or email ryanbernsen@yahoo.com
Thank you as always for your continued support of the Bernsen Family and Team Eagle Lakes.

Mike B

Spring News Letter!

EAGLE LAKES SPRING NEWSLETTER

March 14, 2017

The weather is finally letting up enough for the guides to get out and start preparing for next season.  We have weeks of repairs and clean up from the January and early February storms, including considerable flood damage on the farm in the corn circles.  Several dikes will require fixing; the track hoe will be going nonstop.  We won’t call January weather a 100 yr storm but 50-75 year seems appropriate.  The ice storms on top of the snow pushed several hundred thousand ducks we were holding to the river for about three weeks.  Hunting in January is always fabulous but we struggled like never before.  We were about three ducks a gun off our normal 6.5 avg. for January, but we still ended up having a good year.  Hunting in October was outstanding!  Early November was a little tough with the quackers running tardy, but mid to late November was good.  December duck hunting was wild, lots of quick limit shoots were the norm.

The Goose shooting was incredible from start to finish.  We had a few slow days here and there, but in general it was lights out.  We harvested more lessors than normal this season.  I think the weather played a big role in that.  There were several fields that we couldn’t keep the geese out of, they just kept on coming back.  We also did fabulous on the combo hunts for most of the season.

The Ranch will have all of our same properties back for the 2017-18 season and our goal is to acquire several new duck properties as well as picking up additional dynamite goose leases.  We also have several new habitat projects that will be ready for the upcoming season.  Our new blinds were a smashing success!  Lots of positive feedback on how comfortable they were and how easy they were to shoot out of.  We will be replacing a few older ones this year and working on some strategic placement of the new additions.

 

Our 2017-18 calendar will be sent out soon.  Projected opening day will be Saturday October 14th and the season will run through January 28th 2018.  We don’t expect to see any major changes in season length or bag limits.

The lodge is over 70% booked already.  Most groups booked their trip while they were here last hunting season.  I would strongly suggest getting a hold of Kaci in the office and finalizing your dates.  Group leaders round up your troops, pick out some quality dates and let’s get you back here for some amazing memories.

PRICING will remain the same for the 2017-18 season on all trips.  Follow the web page for any specials that we may be offering.

DRIVE DIRECT GOOSE HUNTS:  Book your 2017-18 goose hunt by May 1, 2017 and you will receive a $50.00 discount off our regular price of $350.00.  You can pay now and pick out your dates later if that works for you.

ALBERTA HUNTING:  Ryan will again be offering duck and goose combo hunts in Grande Prairie Alberta this fall.  Eagle Lakes Ranch customers can take advantage of special pricing specifically for them.  Shooting ducks in the morning and geese in the afternoon is the norm, but on lots of days he harvests both species over the same set of decoys.  Bag limits are eight ducks, 24 in possession, mostly Mallards and Pintail.  You can also shoot 8 dark geese, 24 possession limit.    They shoot about 90% Honkers with a small percentage of Lessors, Snows and Specks.  Grande Prairie is about a 12-14 hour drive from Washington State or California.  It’s also very convenient to fly in to with easy border restrictions regarding firearms.  Contact Ryan directly @ 509-528-8754 or ryanbernsen@yahoo.com.

DEER HUNTS:  We still have a few openings for either archery hunts and/or modern firearm.  You will have the opportunity to get a quality or trophy mule deer.  If interested please contact Ryan.

FISHING:  The Bass and Walleye should start hitting within the next few weeks.  Last season we had a great Walleye year and the Bass fishing was amazing as always.  Several groups made multiple trips last season and others put together family outings or corporate retreats that included both fishing, shooting and lots of relaxing.  Thank you for the fun and support! The boys will be running Salmon trips in July and again in September and early October.

DOVES:  September 1st opener!!!  Our dove hunting is pretty special and very reasonably priced.  What a great way to get the season started with a bang.  We now have a 15 bird limit with shooting from the first of September through October.  We are usually really busy for the first couple of days and then our schedule opens up mid to late season when the birds have really congregated together.

DOC:  We lost a tremendous asset to the Bernsen family and the Eagle Lakes Team.  Ryan and Jess’s sweet dog passed away towards the end of hunting season.  Doc had close to 10,000 retrieves between Eagle Lakes and Canada hunts.  He was definitely a “Rock star” around here is his prime.  He will be dearly missed!!

Thank you as always for your continued support of the Eagle Lakes Ranch Team.

Happy Hunting

Mike B

 

Opening weekend 2016 and additional special pricing dates

October 17, 2016
Opening Weekend
Eagle Lakers,
Opening weekend was a smashing success. We harvested almost 80 limits of ducks in the first two days (mostly mallards and pintails.) The birds worked fabulously. The weather was nasty with lots of wind and rain. It’s the first time in a long time that we haven’t had bright sunshiny days for the opener. This was the most local ducks I’ve seen on the opener in probably 4-5 years. It was pretty awesome to be seeing big bunches of ducks working so early in the season. We also had two nice goose shoots, mixture of honkers and lessers. We had one slow goose shoot but we moved them in the afternoon to a ripper duck hunt. Follow our Facebook page for updated pictures and results.

Grand Prairie Alberta: Ryan’s Eagle Lakes Alberta Waterfowl has turned into a sweet program. He had unbelievable shooting for both ducks and geese for three and a half weeks. He only had a couple hunts that weren’t limit shoots hunting both morning and afternoon. The last week he didn’t have a duck hunt that lasted over an hour with several in the 20 minute range for a group of eight. The goose shooting was outstanding as well. There were a lot of speckle bellies harvested with a ton of honkers shot daily. Thank you to all of our regulars who joined him up North for some amazing memories.

Drive Direct Specials: As promised, we have a few holes in the schedule that need to get filled before we get slammed. We will be offering $250.00 drive direct hunts for both duck and geese. Please contact the office for reservations as soon as possible. There are plenty of local ducks with an early migration predicted and lots of geese are arriving daily from the North.
• Special dates: October 22- November 3rd. $250.00 drive direct hunts for either ducks or geese. Save over $100.00 per day during that time period! Kid rates still apply, knock another $50.00 off for kids 16 years or younger. Also, the first person who mentions this post will receive $50.00 off their next package hunt. Thanks!

Happy Hunting!
Mike B.

Pre season newsletter

Pre-Season News Letter
Eagle Lakers,
It’s only 58 days until the opener, Saturday October 15th. This past weekend the crew got all the blinds camouflaged and the property looks great. It took a little longer than normal getting everything ready with all the new blinds that were put in. They are really comfortable! The corn crop on the ranch is basically made. The farmers will start pulling the water off soon. All the crops should be harvested before hunting season. This will really help with the early migration having all our corn down. The local duck hatch looks way better than last year and everything looks good coming out of Canada for the Pacific Flyway.
Open lodging date cycles:
• Oct. 17th and 18th: multiple rooms
• Oct. 21st-27th: multiple rooms
• Nov. 4th-7th: multiple rooms
• Nov. 25th-29th: multiple rooms (premium dates)
• Dec. 18th-23rd: multiple rooms (premium dates)
• Dec. 27th-31st: few rooms (premium dates)
• Jan. 9th-11th: few rooms (premium dates)
• Jan. 19th-24th: multiple rooms
For our instate customers that are not coming for multiple 3 or 5 day package hunts, we still have individual days or a few days together where you can still have lodging availability. Call the office right away to check on dates.

Open dates for Eagle Lakes Alberta:
Ryan still has room for a small group on September 19th-21st and September 30th- October 1st for a large party. He is booked up on all other dates for this year. Thank you for supporting him in his venture up North.

Doves-Fishing-Early Goose:
We are all booked up for the opening couple of days but the first weekend we still have lots of availability. The dove shooting stays hot all through the month of September. We also have great combo dove/fishing trips that are a blast. The bass and walleye fishing has been extraordinary. Early Goose is September 10th and 11th with a 5 goose limit. Right now there are a ton of local honkers using the fields and I hope that they stay right where they are at because it will be fabulous.

Drive direct goose hunters:
We have picked up several new farms that will be dynamite. We have some great looking property in Moses Lake as well as some new stuff near the lodge. We will be offering several cycles with some incredible specials going on. Follow the web page or call into the office for details. The goose shooting just keeps getting better and better every year!

2017/2018 scheduling:
Our hunting and lodging books are already put together for next season. We are taking reservations for the 2017-2018 season. For those of you who want to book early all we need is a credit card to hold your reservation and a signed confirmation. We won’t charge your card until April 1st, 2017 unless you want to pay earlier.

We will have all the same staff back and a few new faces as well. We are all looking forward to seeing you and taking care of all your hunting needs.

Happy Hunting!
Mike Bernsen, and the Eagle Lakes Team.

Spring Newsletter 2016

4-28-16
Spring Newsletter
Things have been jumping around here a lot earlier than normal with the incredible weather we have been having. The temperatures have been in the 70’s and 80’s for a few weeks now. The farm looks great, the corn has been planted since early April and is now shooting out of the ground. My crew has been busy mowing, discing, rotovating, and fertilizing the corn ponds getting ready to plant next week. They have also been building and repairing dikes that needed some work. I think their best work so far has been building blinds. We will have over 20 new blinds this year to make your hunting experience even more enjoyable and definitely more comfortable. The local duck hatch looks great. The boys have been seeing a lot of eggs in the nests and in the wood duck boxes. All early indications coming out of Canada look promising for the pacific flyway.

Open Lodging Date Cycles:
• Opening Weekend (1st time not pre sold)- 3 rooms
• October 21st arrival- hunting 22nd to 24th, lots of availability. (This weekend is like a second opener with the 2 day duck closure on Thursday and Friday)
• November 25th arrival- hunting 26th through 30th, 4 rooms.
• December 18th arrival- hunting 19th through 23rd, lots of availability.
• December 26th arrival- hunting 27th through 31st, 6 rooms.
• January 5th arrival- hunting 6th through 11th, lots of availability.
• January 18th arrival- hunting 19th through 28th, 6 rooms.
These are just some big cycles that have not been filled yet. We still have lots of individual days or a day or two still available as well. Call the office for your specific needs.

❖ For those of you who have not gotten your deposits in yet please do so ASAP or call Kaci and release your dates that have been pre-booked. Others with partial deposits please round up your troops!

Drive Direct Hunts:
​We are offering a special for drive direct hunters that book their trips before June 1st 2016. You will be able to get last year’s pricing of $300.00 per person per day until that date. After that it will be $350.00 throughout the season. (Kid rates still apply.) For those of you who have already booked, we will make an adjustment in your accounting.

Alberta Hunting:
​Ryan still has openings for duck and goose (combo hunts) in Grande Prairie Alberta this fall. The shooting has been absolutely phenomenal in the past. Shoot ducks in the morning and geese in the afternoons or shoot both over the same set of decoys depending on the weather. He’s harvesting 95% Mallards, Pintail, and giant Honkers with a few Snows and Specks mixed in. You can either drive (about 12-14 hours) or fly very easily into Grande Prairie. If you have never experienced Canada Hunting you owe it to yourself to make it up there. Ryan also offers specials to already existing Eagle Lakes customers. Contact Ryan directly at (509)528-8754 or ryanbernsen@yahoo.com.

Fishing:
​The Bass and Walleye fishing is on right now! The boys have been averaging over 40 bass per trip and 10 plus walleye. The fish are huge right now, check out the webpage or Facebook for some updated pictures of some giants! If you are interested please contact one of the guides directly or call the office. We have fishing specials going on for our Eagle Lakes customers!

Doves:
​Only 125 days until the dove opener!!! The boys already have some canola planted for those wiley critters to munch on. There also appears to be quite a bit of wheat around the zone. Our dove hunting seems to be getting better and better. With the addition of being able to pound the Eurasian doves and the increased bag limits and expanded season, it will be even more fun.

I wanted to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your support of the Eagle Lakes team and the Bernsen family. For over 60 years we have been so fortunate to have the amazing following that has made our business so successful. We are truly blessed to have such a loyal group of hunters that show up year after year. The relationships that have formed between all of you, our family, and our staff has been overwhelming.

​​​Thank you again,
​​​Happy Hunting!
​​​​Michael J. Bernsen, ELR.