The 100 Mile Duck Ruck with Sam Soholt

Show Notes

In this episode, Ricky and Hollywood have a chat with Sam Soholt of Public Land Tees and the main topic of conversation is Conservation. 

Sam and his brother Josh have dedicated much of their lives to conserving wildlife, as well as preserving the tradition of the hunt. Instead of reinventing the wheel, they started a campaign to raise conservation funds known as “Stamp It Forward”. The campaign has contributed to the purchase of thousands of Federal Duck Stamps, infusing tens of thousands of dollars into Wetland Conservation. Of those dollars, 98% by law, must be used for Wetland Conservation. 

As Sam mentions, “What’s good for the bird, is good for the herd”. Wetland conservation provides habitat for over 700 different species of animals, including small and big game. This year, they have stepped it up a notch with the 100 Mile Duck Ruck. Sam will hike 100 miles, through the Prairie Pothole region, in an attempt to earn the funds pledged for the campaign. Sam is swinging for the fences to raise $100,000! Head over to to participate. Link will also be in our bio. 

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Show Transcript

[00:00:00] Welcome to the Range Podcast. I'm Ricky Bruley, and with me is Jake Hollywood Iversson. Join us at the Archery Range where we'll tell stories from the hunt, discuss technical bow shooting tactics and gear, and pick the brains of some of the most successful people to ever shoot a bow, whether you're about to shoot that X for the win, or send an arrow at a trophy B.

This podcast is for you.

The Range Podcast is brought to you by Vapor Trail Archery makers of the best BOL Strings money can buy. Originators of limb driven arrow rest technology and innovators of Stoker eyes, stabilizer systems. Welcome to the Range everybody. I'm Ricky Bruley, and joining me today as always, the one-legged man in a butt kicking contest Hollywood.

I thought you were just gonna call me a one-legged man. I'm like, that is false. That's true. Yeah. We're here at Vapor Trail. It's insane. It's crazy. The fact that we [00:01:00] even were able to find time to put this podcast together is a miracle. And our guest is well worth putting things together and making this happen.

And thank you all for joining us today. You can also find the video version of this episode on our Vapor Trail YouTube channel, so please head on over and subscribe. On the show is one of the most influential people that I know in the conservation world, along with his brother Josh. Their Tyler's efforts to support our way of life is not only inspiring their brand offers up a really cool way to support the cause by supporting a public landee.

He's an incredible photographer. Famous for building what is known as the Public Land bus, and even more famous as the creator of a trending audio clip that has been used in over 250,000 Instagram reels. Sam Soho, how are you doing buddy? I'm doing great. Thanks for having me on. And I know I know August is nuts for any archery shop, especially in a archery accessories shop.

Yeah. I can't thank you enough for making the time to have me on. [00:02:00] Yeah, absolutely man. No problem. Same goes for you, Sam Hollywood here. We have never met, but I know you sounds creepy, but I'm sure you know that with social media, but, and Rick's always talking about, he's got a crush on you or something, but it.

It's good to meet you over on video. I'm surprised you're able to make the time for this too. Actually, I had to go hunting so I have a little more time. Oh, there, perfect. Yeah. Gosh. Like it's that lead up to the fall, that is the busy time. And then when you finally get on the road, it's Oh, I can breathe for a second.

I actually, I can actually work on creating all the content I need to create. I have like I am focused on one thing rather than oh, I need to, do this at the house, or I need to like, take care of this on the truck, or I need to, like still be creating content and recording whatever.

Just and all the prep work and the move into gear and all that stuff. And then you finally get on the road and it's alright, I'm gonna take a minute and just, soak this in. 'cause now I can focus on doing what I'm here to actually do. Yeah, 'cause yeah. Right now you're at your deer camp, aren't you?

In the bus? Yeah. In the bus, yeah. Yep. Yep. [00:03:00] Nice. It's yeah. Season starts what? Friday. Friday. Yep. Season starts Friday. So yeah. Fired up. I got so normal. Got yeah, buddy of mine, Alex Comstock puts this camp on Whitetail d n a and got invited out here last year and rolled the bus out and had a great time last year he killed a buck and then hopefully this year there's quite a few of us in camp this time around, but hopefully a few of us can find a deer that wants to play ball this early season.

Sweet. Yeah, for sure. Absolutely. Man, I know you're super busy. I don't want to take up too much of your time at Deer Camp, but real quick, I just want to talk about this very unique and popular conservation effort known as Stamp It Forward. Can you explain to the range listeners what that's all about?

I. For sure. So stamp it forward, started in 2019 and the original launch of the project I had been thinking it over for over a year of okay, you have these different conservation programs that are built in already. So rather than reinventing the wheel was trying to figure out a way to leverage things that are already in place.

[00:04:00] And one of those is the duck stamp and. For anybody listening who doesn't know. If you're not a waterfowl guy, you've never had to buy a duck stamp to go hunting. But above and beyond needing a federal waterfowl stamp to be a waterfowl hunter by law, 98% of the purchase price. Has to be spent on wetland conservation.

So that's everything from waterfowl production areas to the refuge system to easements, to basically working with conservation organizations to increase and improve habitat. But 98% of that money goes to the ground. And there's not really many other programs where that's the case. Especially when you're looking at government programs, there's a lot of overhead and a lot of stuff.

But because it was built in back in 1934 that much money needed to go to conservation, it has just stuck. And that since its inception in 1934, it has protected over 8 million acres of wetlands. So stamp it forward. Yeah, so stamp it forward was a way to basically, Infuse [00:05:00] more money into that system.

So what we did originally was I just went online and asked people to Venmo me money. And then with 100% of the funds that we received, we went out and bought federal duck stamps. So in year one we bought just over a thousand. So we raised 25 grand. Year two, we were just shy of 1600. Year three was about 1200.

And then last year, rather than just leaving it open-ended, we put a goal out there of 2000 federal duck stamps. So $50,000 and we were able to, right at the end of 2022, we were able to hit that goal and raise 50 grand and buy 2000 duck stamps last fall. That's wild. Wow. That's so cool. And then so to my understanding too, so when.

So then with all of those duck stamps that you end up purchasing you're what you're doing is when somebody purchases something from your online store, then you send a duck stamp with that product. Correct. Is that how that works? Exactly. So basically we turn one fundraiser into another and this year we're gonna get a little bit more [00:06:00] creative with it.

But what we do is but once we have a pile of stamps then we start giving them away on the website. And you're right, with every single item, you get a federal duck stamp. As soon as we have that stack ready to go and we make a big announcement that. Duck stamps are available.

And then over the past couple years we've started to give away a bunch of stamps each year to Youth New Hunter and veteran hunter organizations that are gonna take people into the field. And it helps take on a little bit of that financial responsibility. That 25 bucks for everybody who's gonna be going out and hunting.

So we've given away several hundred over the last couple years and this year With the project that's coming up, the goal is to bolster that giveaway of stamps to raise even more money and get more people in the field way bigger. So that's where the duck ruck comes in. Gotcha. Yeah. Awesome. That's so awesome. I don't know anyone that's really doing it at the level you guys are and that's, it's so cool thinking that you guys have all those federal stamps. 'cause I have tons of buddies that, they buy their fed stamp and then they're just like I'm not signing this.

I want [00:07:00] to keep it. This is a perfect way, right? You get a cool t-shirt off your website when the stamps are ready and then you can just have that stamp again, come back to you. But, so this year, if I'm not mistaken stamp it forward is now gonna be part of the a hundred mile duck ruck, is that correct?

And how can we participate? It sounds like it's a open open to all thing where we can actually actively be involved in that. Yeah, absolutely. So this year came up with the I don't know if it's a dumb idea, but it's gonna be a fun idea to do a hundred mile prairie pothole, duck ruck. I'm actually gonna be starting in North Dakota and hiking south in migrating, if you will, into South Dakota.

And hiking through some of the best prairie pothole region in the country. And the prairie pothole region start, stems from northwest Iowa into Nebraska a little bit up through western Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota, up into Canada. It's a giant swath of land, but it's basically where it's up to 70 to 75% of the annual [00:08:00] duck production happens.

So it's titled the Duck Factory. So regardless of what flyways those ducks end up in, a lot of them are born right there in that. Prairie pothole region. So it's a way for me to go experience a hundred miles on foot. And I thought it would be a cool way to basically earn people's donations rather than just asking people to send us money.

And of course I'm gonna swing for the fences. And so the goal this year is to raise a hundred thousand dollars for duck stamps. So a thousand bucks a mile if we can make it happen. Wow. And how can a person give you the money for that? Is that just like a Venmo thing or is that a a purchase on website or?

Yep. So we're a little more sophisticated at this point. And we put a pledge page, put a pledge page into our website, so it's public ruck, and you can go in and you can pledge as little as 10 cents a mile or 10 bucks. And so the, I, how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

So I've been trying to. [00:09:00] Lower that barrier to entry for people to get involved, and by dropping it all the way down to 10 cents a mile, I keep saying that if we can get 10,000 like-minded people in the hunting and fishing space that wanna raise money for conservation, 10,000 people at 10 cents a mile will raise a hundred thousand dollars for duck stamps.

Yeah. That's so sweet. I think it'll be way easier. That's easier for me too, where I'm just like, I'm more aptt to just give money and like I don't really need more t-shirts. 'cause I was actually just joking with Damon and Rick before we got on. I'm like, I'm not wearing any branded gear. How dare I like in this industry.

Everyone's got something. I do have a few shirts that aren't repping something, but I'm more aptt to just go on and just throw money at it. And Participate that way I know my money's, going back to something that's good toward conservation like that. That's awesome.

Yeah. For sure. And, and graciously, the way I wanted to keep people engaged is that along the hike, have a bunch of partner brands, vapor Trail included that I have or. Willingly to donate to the cause to gear. And at this point I have [00:10:00] over 50 items that I'm gonna be able to give away.

Everything from some vapor trail stuff to savage arms, swag kits, and decoys. And I've got a whole list of stuff to give away. Ryan Kirby Art. Just a mountain of gear to give away. So every two or three miles I'm gonna be able to go live along the ruck and keep people coming back and talking about the project and explaining why the hell I'm even out there hiking a hundred miles.

And collectively we can give away a bunch of cool stuff and raise a bunch of money. Wow. Sweet. Yeah, that's amazing. So there you have it folks. An additional incentive to Get involved with the a hundred mile duck ruck, there's gonna be some products given away to anybody who donates as well.

So that'll be cool. Soon as I saw. I, I saw you, talking about it and right away I was like we gotta somehow get involved. And as Sam said, we'll be giving away a set of vapor trail, V T X bow strings, a limb driver, arrow rest, as well as a stoker eyes stabilizer all of your choice.

So we're really [00:11:00] excited about that. Just to, just such a unique way to do it and you guys never cease to amaze me. Just when you think it's man, this is a really great way and a really creative way to get people involved to get people to step outta their comfort zone and participate.

And then you guys stepped it up a notch. I think. I think it's a brilliant idea, to be honest, but I think it's amazing and looks like when I go to the website, you've already got. 20 donations. So you're well on the way. But. Most certainly more people need to get involved. Get in there and pledge your funds for the stamp at Ford a hundred Mile Duck Rock campaign because this is just an amazing way to ensure that all of a majority of the funds truly go towards conservation.

And he'll have 21 donations as soon as I can get my car to own my pocket. So I've already got it set up here, so make it 22. Perfect. There you go. Awesome. Awesome. I do have to ask too, while you're on this duck rock, do you have other tags in your pocket where you might be [00:12:00] able to hunt in other states?

I guess I do have, because I know I would be trying to make that work. Yeah. I'm probably gonna be pretty focused on just making it through 'cause, doing a hundred miles over three days. So I'm gonna be hiking 33 miles starting September 13th. 33 miles the 13th, 14th, 15th, and then get through the hundred miles.

And then on the September 16th, we're actually doing a celebratory pint night in in Fargo at Fargo Brewing Company from seven to nine. So if anybody listening to this is in the Fargo area or wants to come out and drink some free beer on OnX maps yeah, we're gonna celebrate following the hike.

That'll be sweet. We know a lot of guys up there. Yeah. We can probably send 'em to you. I know. I wanna try to see if, I want to, try to see if I can get up there for it too. And then and I apologize if you had previously mentioned this, but oh shoot. Brain fart. Now I can't remember where I was gonna go with that in the meantime.

I, oh man, the 16th. I'm trying to think. That's deer opener for Minnesota yeah, but I don't [00:13:00] usually stress about that one too much for archery. I'm just like, whatever. I'll wait for the rutt. Yeah. But. So maybe I could make it up there. Yeah, I see. No, that'd be cool. Oh, the dinging light bulb just went off.

Here we go. I'll put a little light bulb above my head on the YouTube video. So what I was curious about, I thought I mentioned that you had said that there was, so basically you're gonna be posting the route on OnX maps, and if anybody wants to join you on this a hundred mile duck rock they can do that, correct.

Yes. Yep. Yeah I'm gonna use the route builder on X and I actually need to do that today or tomorrow to get that kind of hammered out. And probably write a blog about the Duck Rock and get that up there so people can see the route and get that posted. But but yeah, if anybody is in the area or feels like coming out and hiking for a few miles and just hanging out and or checking out the bus Josh is gonna be out with me, leapfrogging me in the bus and trying to find another buddy or two to help.

Hang out and shoot a bunch of content surrounding kind of the whole hike and just have a ton of fun with it. But yeah, if anybody wants to come hike, I don't know exactly where I'm starting yet, but I'll be finishing [00:14:00] at the sand Lake National Wildlife Refuge in South Dakota. So it's just yeah, I want to, Okay, go past a bunch of waterfowl production areas and just find ways to show exactly what duck stamp dollars are going to and what it's funding and and how those dollars actually count.

Man that's just fantastic. And hat's off to you guys. I want to, I do want to give a some credit to Josh as well. He's a little bit more behind the scenes, but he deserves as much accolades as you do. Just for the efforts that you guys have going on. I know he plays a pretty big role in, in a lot of your guys' decision making.

Hat's off to you guys. Good job and thank you. Yeah, absolutely. No. Yeah, Josh deserves a ton of credit. He's if anyone has ordered a public ee it has shipped out of Josh's basement. So he's down there running the screen printer, running the heat, press, running everything and all that is, all the backend logistics of everything is coming outta his house.

Yeah. That's sweet. I wish there was something like this for like mul deer and elk. Yeah, there's R M E F and Mul Deer Foundation, but I wish there was [00:15:00] something that was a little more like, Written in, in 1934 saying Hey, this has to go back to public lands, for deer, population, production and that sort of thing.

But ducks is equally as cool, there's that whole fight on b l m lands and all that stuff out west with public land hunting where it's some of that's getting, swallowed up here and there. So it'd be cool if they had something like that to just, as equally as big as this.

That'd be huge. I think the cool thing about the duck stamp and obviously a lot of the money is gonna go to that area where the ducks are being produced. It's where they're nesting. But the cool thing about that is the duck stamp does not just help migratory birds.

So there's actually 700 species that rely on wetlands. And the saying is, what's good for the bird is good for the herd. And you might not be helping a ton of elk, but as far as like deer numbers and stuff and habitat for big game, it goes a long way. You look at that giant swath of land, I don't know how many millions of acres it is that the Prairie [00:16:00] Pothole region covers, but the fact that all that money is going back into the grasslands and the wetlands to produce better nesting habitat for birds is equally important to big game species.

And above and beyond that wetlands help with flood. Like controlling floods, it helps with water quality, it helps with erosion. It's without 'em, like we would be having to deal a lot more with water quality issues and all that stuff. So it's fun to talk about.

This on a much bigger scale than just ducks and duck hunting. And the one of the things we've tried to do really well is just educate people like that. If you spend time in the outdoors and you want to get involved, one of the easiest ways is to go out and buy a federal duck stamp because you don't need to be a member of an organization.

You don't need to buy a hunting license. You don't need to be a hunter. You don't need, you don't need to do anything. It's 25 bucks and you can know that 98% of that has to be spent on conservation. So it's a very cool built in, like conservation tool. Sweet. Seeing the effect, it's just the trickle down.

It [00:17:00] affects everything around it. It's awesome. Everyone can be involved. Sam, I just wanted to take a second. I want to go back to what I was talking about in your intro about the trending audio clip that has been used in over 250,000 Instagram reels. And I'm gonna try to put you on the spot here, but I figure everybody should probably hear it from your voice.

Can you recite what that what that trending audio is that everybody's heard? Yeah, I think I could do that. This stemmed, I'll give a little background. This stemmed from frustration of an app that was mostly based in high quality photography. So if you were shooting good photos and posting good content, like people would see your stuff, then what?

They went to reels. And and that's fine. It's everything progresses and shifts and but I was frustrated that basically my page had completely fallen flat without posting reels. And so I Recorded. I posted a photo and recorded this audio to go with it and it goes a little something like this.

Here you go. Instagram. Here's a photo as a [00:18:00] reel. Put that in your algorithm. Perfect. Good job. Yeah, it's crazy because I had heard it multiple times, thousands of times probably till I even knew that it was you. 'cause I happened to be. I don't remember. I was like just scrolling around and I had seen, somebody had used it and then I looked down at the bottom and I saw your name for the, or for the original audio.

And I was like, what the. So then I clicked on it and went over to your page, and I was like, no kidding. So yeah, that's pretty cool. Yeah. So I apologize to everyone who had to hear that thousands of times. But yeah, it's, I think it's, it still gets used about a hundred times, at least a hundred times a day.

Yeah. That's awesome. Yeah. Yeah. If Rick or I did that, I don't know if it'd go further than maybe one share. So individually speaking, Who knows, maybe we'll get there someday. Yeah. Podcast will get us there. Yeah. One day we'll be as cool as Sam. Try hard enough and you too can go viral. Yeah. There's a trending audio right there. Yeah. Someday [00:19:00] maybe I'll be as cool as Sam.

Sam is there anything else that that you want to talk about or anything in particular that you wanna let the listeners know about that you have coming up or. I think just wanna say thank you for listening and let me talk about wetland conservation and everything, and if anybody Yeah, if anybody wants to be involved would love for you to donate and share about it.

The more eyeballs and ears that we can get on this whole project is what's gonna make it work. Yeah, I think if you go out there and donate, share it. Try to get 10 of your buddies to donate. Try to turn your $10 into a thousand dollars just by getting some of your friends to go over to the page and make a small donation, which makes a giant impact on everything for all of us.

Fantastic. And I know, I think you're gearing up to record another podcast here today too. Do you want to talk briefly about that so we can send people in that direction too, or? Sure. Yeah. So we're gonna do another podcast talking all about the duck ruck doing the On the Wing podcast with Pheasants Forever.

Awesome. And actually have a biologist [00:20:00] from US Fish and Wildlife Service on that one as well. So he's gonna talk about the history of the duck stamp all the way back to Dinging Darling the original duck stamp artist, and what the duck stamp has done for conservation over the years, the last 90 years or whatever it is now.

And yeah, so that one should be, that one should be fun. Get to talk with Bob St. Pierre over there. He's the host of the On the Wing podcast. And I, It's cool that they were willing to do it because even though it's pheasants forever, they, every year they, do a, an article or a post or an email about, trying to get everyone who upland hunts to also buy a duck stamp because it is so vital for both waterfowl and upland birds.

Cool. Yeah, so when that comes out, make sure you all head over there and check out that podcast as well. And I think that being said, that brings us to the end of this episode. If you want more information about the hundred Mile Duck Ruck, visit Public Landes slash duck ruck.

September 13th, 14th and 15th, and a [00:21:00] pint night on the 16th in Fargo to follow is, The days that Sam will be out there hunt or hiking I should say. And while you're there, be sure to browse through the selection of t-shirts and grab a few. Sam if the listeners wanna look you up where can they find you?

So if they wanna follow along with me all of my social stuff is just at Sam. So Holt and then all of our public Landee stuff is at public Landee. And we also have Josh and I have a YouTube channel called, so Holt Brothers. And you can find us at the Range Podcast on Instagram and Facebook and myself at Jake Ivy three on Instagram.

Jake Iverson, Hollywood in parentheses on Facebook. How about you, Ricky? Yeah, for sure. Make sure you get over there 'cause he's about to have a trending audio come out here pretty soon, so yeah, you may wanna get on that, but yeah, you can find me at Ricky Wayne 80 on IG and Ricky w Bruley on Facebook.

Again, please be sure to head over to Vapor Trail YouTube channel. If you like the [00:22:00] video, hit that thumbs up button. And make sure to subscribe so you can be up to date on all things archery. If you're listening, do us a favor, give us a rating and make certain you give us five stars. Big thanks Sam, for taking time outta your day on the road to hang out with us and chat.

I hope we can have you on again during the off season so we can have more of a fireside chat. And with that we're gonna pack up our bows and arrows and we're gonna leave the range. Have a great day, everybody. Peace. Thank you, Sam. Thanks everybody. Vapor Trail is now offering an exclusive discount to the Range podcast listeners Enter promo code T R P 15, that's t r p 15 at checkout for 15% off V T X Bow strings and Vapor Trail and Stoke Rice, branded t-shirts, hats, and other gear.

Heard it? Nice shot. Hell went line, I think. I think he cut the, I think he cut the tube at the bottom.