Iowa Trappers Association December 2009 Report

President — Craig Sweet, 1825 Kirkwood St., Saint Charles, IA 50240; phone: 641-764-2758

Vice President — Randy Mitchell, Iowa Fall, IA; phone: 641-648-6787

Secretary — Patty Kempf, 3371 130th St., Jamaica, IA 50128; e-mail:

Treasurer — Chris Grillot, 2769 110th Ave., Wheatland, IA 52777; phone: 563-374-1074;  e-mail:

FTA Director — Gene Purdy, 521 Edwin Place, Fontanelle, IA 50846; phone: 641-745-8841

NTA Director — George Scalf, 123 N. Madison Ave., Ottumwa, IA 52501; phone: 641-682-3937; e-mail:

Membership Options:

• Individual membership including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $15
• Lifetime membership with subscription — $250

Complete membership application on first page of association section and send dues to:

ITA Secretary
Patty Kempf
3371-130th St.
Jamaica, IA 50129


Greetings to all. As you read this, trapping season for this year is about a week old. Hope you all get out there to enjoy it. While out there, don’t forget to take another person along to introduce them to the part of the outdoors we enjoy so much. The prices sound as if they will be lower than last season. To those that do this every year, higher prices are willing accepted, but the real rewards come from being outdoors and the encounters with wildlife and nature that occur. For many years now, I am out there from day one to the close of regular season, every day running traps. There are times I wonder why, especially those days when temps are below zero.

Those days never seem to fail to surprise you in one way or another sooner or later. One of those times that I remember so well was a January morning, air temp was 19 degrees below. I wanted to stay in bed, but knew I had to check traps. Part way through the line, there in the snow along the river, appeared a set of ’coon tracks headed down stream toward a set location. As I got closer, the set location was not the same as before. There in the blind set along the bank near the beaver dam is a prize ’coon. The cold walk back home that cold morning was not near as cold as when I had left. That day over 30 years ago is what keeps me doing what I enjoy to this day — trapping. The moral of the story is always check your traps, no matter the weather conditions.

It is your responsibility to tend them every day. There have been times over the years when I have been sick, but still ran my line. We as trappers are required and should be committed enough to be out there every day as long as traps are set. Other outdoor activities can pick and choose when they participate. I know there are hardcore people with them also who are out there in the extremes. When trapping, get to know the rules and laws that we must abide by, they are there for a reason. Also use common sense to avoid situations that might be bad for trapping in the public eye, even though it might be legal. Situations that occur with traps, trappers or trapping never get good press. It is best to police yourselves than to have enforcement or media involved. Enough said.

Don’t forget about the Iowa NAFA ’Coon Raffle. For each XL ’coon or bigger donated, stretched and dried, you get your name into the drawing. All ’coons donated are sold and proceeds are split 50/50 between the name drawn from all entries and the ITA. Ask your NAFA rep for details or to enter.

With the holidays not far away, don’t forget about the ITA for gift options. A year membership with subscription to the Trapper & Predator Caller Magazine (10 issues) is only $15 Also available are t-shirts, caps, belt buckles, bobcat prints, 50th ITA cutting boards and decals. Check, money order, Visa or Master Charge are all payment options. See most items on the ITA Web site at or contact Chris Grillot at the address or number located under the column heading above for further details or purchase info.
The ITA has a few districts open without directors. The extreme SE, NE and NW corners of the state and in the Cedar Rapids area are the districts open. If you are interested and live in these areas, contact me or any officer or director for details. You must be an ITA member to become a director.

Better close for now. Have a safe and enjoyable trapping season

— Craig Sweet


On Saturday, Oct. 3, 2009, the Wapello County Conservation Board hosted a trapping seminar. Assisting me was Dennis Long, also of Ottumwa. We had approximately 14 attendees.

Saturday, Oct. 24 marked the first day that prestaking was legal on public right-of-ways. Let’s all use common sense and be ethical out there if we wish to be allowed to continue this practice.

Iowa’s trapping season opened Saturday, Nov. 7 at 8 a.m. I wish everyone a happy and healthy season.

Remember, I am your liaison between the Iowa Trappers and the National Trappers Associations. If you ever have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me.

— George E. Scalf 

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