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Youth pheasant hike

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  • Youth pheasant hike

    Just the girl and the younger dog today. Ok, so we went hunting but she didn't pop a primer.

    Started out with a guilt trip, I let the dogs out as usual this morning then put my young dog in the kennel and brought the old one back in the house. Unfortunately she knew exactly what was up and started getting all excited thinking she was going. I mean excited bad. The boy ended up taking her in the man cave so we could leave. Afterwards she paced the kitchen until he took her out, then she howled for about 15 minutes. We'll run her on a limited basis this year but the cover they plant these birds in is heavy, grass and goldenrod stuff the dogs have to plow through. Too much for the old gal.

    We get to the WMA, once we're down the trail a bit I give my daughter 2 shells to load up. We hit the old meadow and about 50 yards in a rooster flushes wild just behind us.......from 15 ft up in an apple tree. The bird goes right over our heads straight away, she pulls up, seems to be on it and.......nothing. Forgot the safety. We follow but can't get on it. Work our way around then continue up the trail. We pass by a couple smaller fields to reach the top then work our way back down. I figure this will make the going easier. Our legs are soaking wet from the dew by the forth field where we get a second flush in front of the dog. This one goes out in front hooking a little left. Gun's up again, still no bang. She got the safety off this time but then couldn't catch up with the hen (legal here). She turns to me choked up a little and asked "How do you know when they're too far out?" I tell her you'll know, that she did fine holding off. (I couldn't help but wonder if the turkey from this spring factored in but didn't ask). I haven't had the opportunity to get her on clays at all, it's been a few years since the boy and I have even. We work our way back down, hit the low field once again then head for the truck. We did put up one woodcock that the dog was on briefly and saw two grouse working just inside a woodline right before getting back to the main trail. Gave the dog a hand motion to put her on them, once she saw them she gave chase and they flushed. First time out this year, hopefully she'll settle down as the season gets going.

    As we're headed toward home I ask her if she wants to try another area not too far from home the other direction. Without hesitation she says sure. I'm happy she's up for it even though I'm feeling it in my legs. At this point her Fitbit is showing 4 miles, none of it very level. We get to the next spot and the dog is obviously feeling it too. She's mostly walking out in front, not really hunting. We push up and around a big former hayfield that's been partially cut this year. Still lots of ground to work over. At the upper left corner a rooster flushes wild up past us just after we make a turn. We watch it drop In a lower corner and head that way. Nothing. By now the pup's pretty much just following us, her tounges hanging out as its warming up and there's no water holes here. As i wasn't planning on being here I know it's time to head back. We get about 100 yards and I see the grass moving about 8' in front of us, I get her and the dog on it and just about 2' in front of an old round bale it stops and apparently vanishes. Could have been the same bird or maybe even a rabbit but we couldn't kick the thing up for anything and it was never more than 15' ahead of us. Just that kind of day I guess. No complaints, weather was perfect and the leaves are turning pretty decently for a dry summer.

    Back at the truck the Fitbit said just over 12,900 steps and 6 miles covered.
    Last edited by fitch270; 09-26-2020, 08:50 PM.

  • #3
    Brought back a lot of memories of my own kids. Thank you both. Wish you folks had doves, lots of shooting with minimal work. Tell her hang tough we are all rooting for her. Pics always make stories better.

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    • #4
      Those pictures say it all, fitch270!
      Don't give up. It'll happen in time!

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      • #5
        I envy the hell out of you fitch ! My kids both had other things of interest during my pheasant days, but they were a little younger then too. Even though they were brought up in a environment of guns and hunting, something just never connected. As they became somewhat older, I was more into archery then and that led to even less interest. I am sure much of the issue was of my own doing. Wish now there was a re-play button to life, but then we must all live with what is. So glad for you that ‘what is’ is good !!

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