Sunday, August 29, 2010

Scouting Success

Nichole was kind enough to let us camp in area that I wanted to scout for grouse. Not only was it a nice area to camp but we found some grouse. It's always nice to reward your dog for her hard earned work!
Mia had around 20 contacts on 4 broods of grouse. Three of the broods had 4-6 birds in each of them and then we found 2 huge males hanging out in the dark timber.

We'll be back at it soon enough. Next time it will be for real!

Looks Birdy!

It is Birdy!


Plenty of food in grouse country

til next time...

Monday, August 23, 2010

Happy to Report

I'm happy to report that our little girl Abby's training is coming along. Nichole and I made the trip to Tim DeGroff's High Prairie Farms where is Abby is for training. She was very excited to see us and maybe a little too excited. She was completely and total distracted during her training run. Every time Tim hupped Abby she turned to take a look at us. At one point she was so excited she broke from her run only to run back to us!! Not a big deal, she was just happy to see us.

After the training session we went back to the kennel where Tim has two litters on the ground. Don't worry, we're not looking to add another pup but it was fun to watch these little ones play. You can't beat this........

Monday, August 16, 2010

Mia Time

With Abby away at training and the upland season only a few weeks away we've been focusing on Mia.
Walks in the evening, runs around the park and trips to the dog park are the ways we are getting Mia in shape.

Wet Dog!

Yes, I was "dog walking".

Head up high!!

Mia is a hard charging ESS when it comes to hunting wild birds. She's had a few injuries over the years so we are putting a little more attention into her conditioning. As you can see, she also loves the water!!

til next time....

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Little Girl Goes to College

So after much deliberation I decided to send my little girl, Abby, off to college. I dropped her off at High Prairie Farms to continue her steady training.

I've devoted so much time and energy to Abby's steadying this summer that it was a hard decision to come by. But it came down to timing. I'm running out of time and she needs more time in the field to get over the "hump." Steadying a flushing spaniel should be done as quick as possible. Once foundations are laid, you quickly move onto the next hurtle. Abby has a good foundation but I wasn't able to move on with her as fast as I would have liked. With the days growing shorter and my work obligations increasing it was a no-brainier to send her away for 6-8 weeks because more work can be done by a professional trainer that knows what he is doing than what I can do in 6 months!

High Prairie Farms

I'm very lucky to have such a resource in Tim Degroff of High Prairie Farms Flushing Spaniels. Not only did I purchase Abby as a puppy from Tim but I have spent the last 5 years learning the intricacies of training and hunting with Field Bred Springer Spaniels. Over those years, Tim has been a great mentor in this game and also a good friend that isn't shy to point out that I dropped a few birds too short........."hardly sporting mate." It was a hard decision but I know that she is in good hands or Nichole would have never let her leave the house!!!

After a few weeks I can start heading back up to Tim's to check on her progress. It's going to be a long 6-8 weeks but it will be worth it in the end.

So you are saying that I get to run around with other springers and train to be a great gun dog on a daily basis?

til next time...

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Day Hike

Sometimes the thin air is good for you!! Nichole and I took the girls up for a day hike at high altitude to get the lungs, heart and legs going. And go they did.  We only hiked 4 miles but it was enough to get a decent work out in on a Saturday afternoon. The high country is a green as ever. The flowers are abundant and vibrant as ever.

It should be a banner year for any and all hunting in Colorado this year. We are seeing consistent rains both in the mountains and out on the plains.

Here are few photos from high altitude.

The hike.

The girls remember snow....and they still love it!

Nichole and the girls at 12,600 ft!!

Break Time

Scouting for Ptarmigan....Mia had the left side, Abby had the right side and I had straight ahead!

Speaking of Ptarmigan.

til next time....