The Weekly #MyWideOpenSpaces Contest Has Officially Begun!

Post your photos on social media and use #MyWideOpenSpaces for the chance to win!

To kick off the contest, we figured we'd break down how this works. In a nutshell, you use our hashtag with any photo that relates to hunting, fishing or the outdoors in general. It could be a photo of a catch from your latest fishing trip or that first spring gobbler of year. Or, maybe it's a scenic photo from a hike or a recent camping trip. We aren't picky; we love all things outdoors. We'll select one winner each week based on the quality of the photo, the trophy and even the caption.

Winners will receive some free gear, which will vary as the contest progresses. Then, we'll contact you to hear the story behind the photo, which we'll write and publish on our site!

One of our first submissions comes from my good friend, Zail Smith. Two weeks ago, Zail was was kind enough to make the trip from Boston all the way down to Texas to do some hog hunting, and dropped one the second morning of the trip.

The Hunt

Texas Hog. #MyWideOpenSpaces

A post shared by Zail Smith (@zail.smith) on

Another friend of mine invited us out to some property he leases out west of Forth Worth, which boasts a modest 1,000 acres of hog heaven. He has various stands and ground blinds set up around the property, each featuring unique terrain and hog activity.

Upon arrival, we tended to the numerous feeders on the property, which no one had the chance to fill in over a month. Once we finished, we each claimed the stand or blind we felt the most confident about and posted up for the evening.

Zail's intuition would ultimately prove the most reliable, as he saw steady wildlife traffic all weekend from his stand, hogs included.

Despite never being hunted from and sitting over 100 yards away from the nearest feeder, this stand was Zail's favorite from the moment we saw it. Even though it was a little farther off, that feeder happened to be the only one still running when we first arrived.

He saw a couple hogs early the first night, but stayed patient as more and more came to the feeder. With no more than 10 minutes of daylight left, Zail took a shot with the .243 rifle he borrowed from someone in the group. Without skipping a beat, he quickly racked the bolt, chambering another round for the next hog. He hastily returned to the glass of his scope, hoping to spot results (with no help from the sun), but couldn't be sure if he connected.

Shortly after, we rendezvoused at Zail's stand, where we found one small drop of blood, but no boar.

He returned to the same stand the following morning, where he would claim sweet redemption without wasting any time.


I hadn't been in my stand for more than an hour when I heard a shot off in the distance—once again in Zail's direction.

Now we're just trying to find a time to meet up again and cook up some wild boar!