Sunday, January 30, 2011

That's a Wrap

Not much to say after I finally finished our Upland season here in Colorado.  My last hunt was action packed just like the first hunt of the season back in September.  The scenting conditions were great due to a frosty fog that helped the dogs track down the late season runners.  The fog also helped keep the birds within range.  We were able to scratch down a few birds but like many times before, we should have had a few more.

So it's 7 months before we chase wild birds again but it will only be 6 days before I hit the training fields.  Abby is is need of some serious re-training to get ready for the late spring field trials.

Frosty morning.
Is it true that this is our last hunt for the season?
Brian and Huck
Adis with Oreo, Myself with the girls and Brian and Huck.

til next time...

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The I-70 Drive

Towards the end of every journey you sometimes find it's hard to drum up enough strength to keep it going.  As my Upland season comes to an end, I find that I still have the desire to chase after the birds but the physical toll starts to overcome that passion. That's where caffeine and birds come in.  Yesterday morning's 180 mile drive to our pheasant covers was a harder than usual drive.  It seemed that I just couldn't wake up, no mater the amount of coffee that was consumed.  I finally was alert when the first cock pheasant flushed.  It's funny how birds can do that to you!

For the next ten hours the four hunters in our group chased after these late season birds like it was opening day all over.  The weather, 58 and sunny, helped fuel the chase.  As the wind picked up, the birds started to hold slightly tighter than what I was expecting.  That was fine with us.

As the day went on, it became clear that our success balanced on how well we shot. With that being said, 6 birds fell while many others escaped.

I have one more hunt planned before our seasons ends.  Like everything else in life, all good things must come to an end.

Pete and Brian on a break.

Razor dog!

Huck, the hunting Jack Russell, roosters beware this little guy can hunt!


The long shadow of a late season hunt.


My Girls!

The crew!
Good eats at the I-70 Diner in Flagler, CO.

til next time....

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Still Trying

My 10 year old nephew, Ben, is brand-spanking-new to hunting.  He has about four pheasant hunts to his career.  All of those hunts have taken place in the last six weeks and he's trying like mad to take his first wild pheasant.  No stocked birds for this kid.  He's doing it the hard way!  So far no birds have fallen to his 20 gauge, 870 Youth Pump Gun, but it's not from the lack of trying.

Today we ventured out to our favorite Eastern Colorado pheasant covers in search of his first bird.  We hit the covers hard.  But mother nature brought a nice warm spell to help make these crafty birds even craftier!

About an hour into our first hunt, Ben and I both cleanly missed a tight-holding rooster.  I thought to myself that might be a great start to the day.  About 6 hours and many miles later, I was quickly proven wrong as no birds fell from Ben's gun.  But don't worry, we'll keep trying to get Ben his first bird.

Whitetail Shed found on the prairie.
til next time....

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Field of Dreams

A new cover was named today.

After a tough morning of trying to find some willy roosters to cooperate, we finally found some pay dirt.  In this case, the dirt was a section of CRP that had slight rolling hills, thick grass cover and a dry creek bed.  I drove by this cover many times before and just last week entered it for the first time.  We put up a few birds, but the cover was too big for just a few guns.  So today we entered it with 6 guns and we devised the plan to pinch, circle, loop and work the birds into the wind.  A great plan for some late season birds.

The plan was fluid as we spent the next few hours chasing these crafty birds.  In the end, we scratched down eight hard-earned birds.  The dogs (3 Springers, 1 GSP, 1 French Brit and 1 Lab) used the rolling contour to flush the birds in range of the guns.  Many more escaped out the side and back.   As always, we could have, should have, taken a few more.   But in the end I was truly impressed with this giant sea of grass.

Adam, ready and alert in the Field of Dreams

til next time....

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Finally Signed Back Up

After a few years of forgetting to renew my membership, I finally signed back up with Pheasants Forever.  It feels good help a great cause.  Hopefully I'll stay true to desire to help out more and maybe volunteer for some of the youth functions.  At the sportsmen show here in Denver,  I was able to speak with the Regional Rep, Bob Hix.  He was very generous with his time and had a great discussion about all things related to this great organization.

til next time....

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Who said springers can't handle the cold?

Here are a few photos from my brother Phil's late season duck hunt in the Niagara River, near Buffalo NY.


Mollie stays warm by melting snow with her eyes!
Oh Buffalo, how I miss you, not really.

til next time...