I guess I’ll have to leave town more often. Barb, the dogs and I headed to Bear Valley for four days to relive some of my old archery days and came home to nothing but good news for the chukar hunters. As you hopefully read on my last post, Steve and a couple of anonymous posters had some pretty good news. A good friend of mine left a message on my phone of great numbers of birds in an area we hunt. Another hunter called to let me know he is seeing lots of 6 week old birds in his area’s. So, as we are getting closer to September, the birds are starting to appear. It’s looking like they might have beat the heat.
If you are a grouse hunter, here’s some good news for you. A friend of mine was up on a local mountain and saw good numbers of blues. I have some good news for the archery hunters. Those other grouse (someone help me here), the ones that aren’t too smart are very plentiful also. I use to kill them with a rock or arrow one for dinner when I was chasing elk. I even have caught a couple. They are not too smart or much fun to hunt with a dog although they are great for teaching a dog to hold to sight.
Here’s a video of some of the encounters we had and the boys trying to get Barb and I off the trail and on to a hill that looked more like a chukar slope. The trail was just about enough for me.
If you’re only interested in chukar news, you should quit reading now. The rest is a story about my loyal wife and dogs.
On one of the hiking trips we took, we pushed ourselves pretty hard to get a good workout. The dogs worked hard running up ahead and up the slopes looking for birds while Barb traveled at the pace she felt comfortable with.
It was a cool morning and both dogs had super energy, posing for pictures once in a while.
We did pretty darn good for being so far out of shape, making 3 and a half miles and about 1250 feet of elevation before we hit the ridge we were headed for. We ate a few snacks and took time to catch our breath while enjoying the scenery. I snapped a picture of the three of them and we decided to head down after hearing some distant thunder.
As we headed down the thunder kept getting closer and we started to feel a few rain drops.. I’ve been caught in thunder storms quite a bit, so I wasn’t too concerned. With about two miles to go to the truck, suddenly a bolt hit somewhere on the same mountain we were on and it was quite loud. Up until now, I had been leading the way on the trail.
At first I thought maybe a rock had rolled down the hill, but I soon saw Barb passing me out of the corner of my eye. She got about twenty yards in front of me and I mentioned to her that I couldn’t run with my leg and back like they are. She turned and looked back up at me and said something like “that’s your problem buddy”.
She snapped a quick picture of me with her phone. I really believe she was taking this picture as a fond memory of me because I was going to die here on the mountain.
So off she fled. Leaving me to fend for myself with the impending lightning storm and rain that was about to swoop down upon me. More disheartening than that, both dogs fled with her. Loyalty had just ran down the hill. I kept expecting the dogs to come back and check on me but nothing doin.
When I got .38 miles from the rig, my Alpha read both dogs treed. I knew that meant they were at the truck, out of the rain that had just begun. I hobbled that final third of a mile down the muddy trail to the truck. When I got there the windows weren’t even steamed up, the truck had been running so long. The dogs were asleep and Barb was listening to the radio. She had been kind enough to take their collars off and make them more comfortable.
Barb also looked very dry and comfortable. I noted that she was sitting in the passenger seat and she remarked how she knew I liked to drive. I also heard her mumble something about how long it took me to get back. I looked in the back seat at the dogs and figured with three against one in this democratic world, they must be right.
Paybacks are hell, but I’ll have to get them one at a time.