Waterfowl Marsh Athlete
When he’s not in his Kentucky blind on the Ohio River, or hunting waterfowl all over the U.S. and Canada, he’s building, tuning, and talking calls as the owner of Field Proven Calls.
“It consumes my life 365 days a year,” he says. “I am so fortunate that my love and passion for waterfowl hunting has blessed me with the opportunity to work in the industry I grew up loving.”
Clay got into the sport himself at the age of 11, eagerly absorbing all his father’s knowledge. And today, waterfowl hunting is still very much about relationships for him. “The most gratifying part of hunting is spending time with family and friends in a blind,” he says. “Fifteen years ago I would have said shooting limits was the most gratifying aspect of hunting. But as I get older, if I can go out every day and work a few groups of ducks or geese and watch my dog work, I’ve had a good day. Though, trust me, I still like to pull the trigger.”
While his favorite elements of waterfowl hunting haven’t changed since he started the sport as a kid, other things have. Clay says that hunters have more access to information than when he was starting out, so learning to hunt doesn’t require as much trial and error. Hunters are more abundant, which is great for habitat and population numbers. And, he says, the quality of products has improved. “SITKA Gear has set the bar when it comes to waterfowl apparel and designs. It has changed the way I get dressed every morning to go hunting. The products allow me to wear less and still be warm and comfortable, which plays a huge role for me when I’m facing the elements on a daily basis.”
NEW KEY WATERFOWL MARSH GEAR
Highly specialized for the kill hole environment, the Fahrenheit Jacket is a windproof insulating mid layer. Mapped for moisture management with Primaloft® down blend from elbow to elbow and fully synthetic Primaloft® through the forearms.
Sharply focused in concept and design, the Layout Jacket’s every feature is optimized for the layout blind. The waterproof, breathable GORE-TEX® construction is backed by body-mapped Primaloft® insulation, and reinforced in the elbows and forearms for maneuvering in corn stubble. Sitka Ground Shield Insulation keeps cold spots from developing at points that contact the frozen earth.