The demise of the chukar hunter

Once again, “it ain’t gonna happen”. My two hunts this week are proof that we will never go away.

I’ll combine the two hunts because they were similar in weather, steepness, miles dog work, etc. I went four miles both days, Jake tripled my distance and Grady went 4 1/2 what I did. My elevation gain was about 1000 feet each trip. The big difference between these two hunts and the hundreds of hunts in the past was the pain level.

From the time I leave the truck until the time I get back to it, I hurt. Many would give up at this point. Not me and probably many others that love their dogs as much as I do as well as love chukar hunting. I literally have to go up hill by side hilling with my left leg on the downhill side because of the pain. In the snow and the frozen stuff, I’m so tense that my quads start hurting. But I slowly keep moving, hoping to hear that sound that says my dogs are on point. And it happens a lot.

The big problem is getting to that point. There is no more going straight to it. I have to navigate a course that keeps me from injuring my achilles any more. My back also tells me to take more breaks as I move. Many times it takes longer than the boys are willing to wait. Several times I got close to the dogs just to see the birds flying overhead. I’m getting smarter now and don’t take a chance of twisting and taking a shot. It might cause too much pain.

Sounds like it’s not much fun. I admit, it’s not as fun as it usually is,but it’s still worth every step I take. I love watching my dogs work chukars. Even the times they prematurely flush the birds. I decided to take the camera this week,knowing that I was going to be moving much slower and carefully. It was a great decision because I can show reasons why this chukar hunter will never give it up.

Here’s Jake on point.

I don’t know how long he had been on point, but by the time I got to him he had decided that sitting on point would work just fine. His hips are wearing out after ten years of chukar chasing.

Fine by me. He also will never give up chukar hunting. And of course there is Grady who always provides much entertainment. He is at home on the steep mountain slopes.

Grady probably travels more miles than any of my past dogs. He wants to make sure there are no birds missed. But the real thrill is when I hobble up to both boys on point. I’d better shoot straight on those.

And watching good team work is another reason for enduring some pain. Here is Grady pointing with Jake honoring.

As I’m gimping around the hill, feeling sorry for myself, there is always that next point to take my mind off the pain.

And it keeps on happening until my legs are so tired from my awkward gate that It’s time to get back to the rig.

This is what I love doing and I believe that if I had to hunt on crutches I would try and find a way of doing so. And I don’t think I’m alone with that thinking. And success helps.

Yes, I’m short of the number of birds I set out to get but that doesn’t lessen the feeling of such a great outing.

Two painful hunts, but enjoyable all the same. This is one chukar hunter that they’ll have a hard time keeping off the mountain.

Published by jakeandgrady

Hunting has been a favorite past time for me for 55 years but the last twenty five years I have been consumed by chukar hunting and more specifically chukar hunting with fantastic dogs. In this blog I hope to pass on any information I can about chukar hunting but more than anything I want to showcase what will probably be my last two chukar dogs, Jake and Grady. I am 70 years old, Jake is 8 and Grady is 3 and I'm hoping to stay on the chukar mountain until I am 80 when Grady will be fetching my final chukars.

6 thoughts on “The demise of the chukar hunter

  1. Father time stepped up the pace this year. I had some sort of special xray this morning and am scheduled for two different mri’s Monday. A couple more hunting trips and I may have to order a wheel chair. Jeff what is an ema?


  2. Carry your emergency beacon. When your that tentative moving, a serious injury easily can occur. Careful, I feel the same way about not letting dogs down


  3. It is a testimony to your love of Chukar hunting and toughness! These are great pictures!

    We find a few birds every hunt, not the numbers you find but enough to keep me going. Only a few days left and may not get to hunt much more.

    Hope your leg heals up so you can cover the hills a bit easier. Never easy though, which is part of the attraction to Chukar hunting.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: