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Blind 9 – A Northwest Waterfowler’s Paradise

I created this site to document the hunts, locations, tips, tricks, recipes, and gear our group uses during our annual waterfowl exploits in the great Pacific Northwest. The name Blind 9 comes from the worst blind at the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge. It’s pocked with Nutria holes, surrounded by submerged high clumps of grass, and accessed via slimy underwater pathways. You’re lucky if you don’t get dunked or sprain an ankle on any particular visit. Yet, if you’ve got waterfowl fever and like to shiver in swamps or freeze in farm fields then you’ll understand what Blind 9 really is: a waterfowler’s paradise.

Refuge Guides

The refuge Guides are always a work in progress and reflect up-to-date information as we hunt them. We strive for accuracy but blind locations, water levels and field conditions can change from season to season. If you find something that doesn’t look right, feel free to contact us to help update it.

Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge

McNary National Wildlife Refuge

Shillapoo Wildlife Area

Willapa National Wildlife Refuge

Tips & Tricks

Patching Neoprene Waders With Something That Works

As I was starting my third waterfowl season I ran into the inevitable problem of leaky waders. It started pretty innocuously early in the season. After the hunt I stripped off the waders and noticed one of my socks was wet, not soaked but wetter that sweaty-wet to be...

Latest Hunting Logs

Opening Day 2018 at Lake Vancouver

Opening Day 2018 at Lake Vancouver

Opening day of duck season 2018 here is SW Washington did not look promising. The weather forecast was sunny with light wind and highs up to 70 degrees. Around here, for duck hunting anyway, this is bad. Plan A, Ridgefield For the past couple of seasons, we had...

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An Opening Day 2017 Hunt at McNary in Washington

An Opening Day 2017 Hunt at McNary in Washington

Sunrise from Blind 6 at McNary National Wildlife Refuge. Opening Day for the 2017-2018 season yields a ton of fun, plenty of ducks, and our first McNary geese. Location: McNary Wildlife Refuge, Fee Hunt Unit, Blind 6 Conditions: Partly cloudy, low 40s in the morning,...

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Late January Hunt in Blind 9 at McNary

Late January Hunt in Blind 9 at McNary

McNary offers up Another good mixed bag of ducks with some mallards a specklebelly goose and a bunch of divers. Location: McNary Wildlife Refuge, Fee Hunt Unit, Blind 9 Conditions: Showers early then partly cloudy, cold, shifting winds from South, West, and North...

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Success and Challenges at McNary

Success and Challenges at McNary

Divers rule the day as McNary serves up lessons in identification and reminds us that we’re not as good as we think we are. Location: McNary Wildlife Refuge, Fee Hunt Unit, Blind 6 Conditions: Partly cloudy, cold, breezy from the south Birds Taken: 14 for...

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Ducks in a Downpour

Ducks in a Downpour

Scott digs through his bag in Blind 16 as Phil retrieves a duck in a downpour. Occasionally I’ll lurk on duck hunting message boards to pick up tidbits and to make sure I’m up to date on what people are discussing. One of the questions I’ve often...

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Having a Good Plan Pays off at Ridgefield

Having a Good Plan Pays off at Ridgefield

My wife reminds me all the time that she likes to go about her days with a plan, mostly around what we’re going to do and how we’re going to do it. After years of marriage I’ve come to appreciate this attitude – although I can veer off script...

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Goose Opener at Ridgefield: What Kind of Goose is That?

Goose Opener at Ridgefield: What Kind of Goose is That?

The last time we hunted Blind 1, during non-goose season, geese flew over us constantly. A week later we came back to the same blind and continued our lessons in goose identification. Location: Ridgefield Wildlife Refuge, Blind 1 Conditions: Cool, cloudy, between rain...

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Early November Saturday Hunt at Ridgefield Blind 1

Early November Saturday Hunt at Ridgefield Blind 1

If goose season had been open we’d probably have limited, but instead we got only a couple of opportunities at ducks on a day bringing lots of rain. Location: Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge, Blind 1 Conditions: Cloudy and cool in the morning; rain midday...

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Early November Standby Hunt at Ridgefield

Early November Standby Hunt at Ridgefield

Bad luck and a slow day for ducks on the refuge provides some good wildlife viewing. Location: Ridgefield NWR, Blind 6 Conditions: 39 degrees and light fog in the morning, warmer and partly cloudy in afternoon with breeze of 5-10 mph Birds Taken: 0 Typical of a...

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Late October Duck Hunt at Ridgefield NWR

Late October Duck Hunt at Ridgefield NWR

Sometimes the biggest challenge in duck hunting is getting into a location where the ducks want to be. This Ridgefield hunt provided a perfect example. Date: Thursday, Oct. 29, 2015 Location: Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge, Fee Hunt Unit, Blind 18...

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