Oy. Where to start with this weekend? This post is going up late for a couple reasons. One, we got back in to town a little after midnight last night- no time to write everything in the past tense Sunday night and queue it up for Monday morning. Two, I could not delay my shower this morning. Three, I decided to get all of the dirty hunting clothes and under layers in the wash before work, so I can focus on unpacking and cleaning the truck this afternoon.
Anyways. We drove up north late Friday night, again. Arrived around two, pretty much the same as two weeks ago. Only, there were storms moving through. It was foggy, rainy, chilly, and windy. Our canoe lost two of the foam blocks we stick on it while driving somewhere along the almost 200 miles of highway between here and the cabin. We got to bed, only wake up to a torrential downpour at 5 in the morning. And thick, thick fog. We waited out the worst of the rain under the cabin’s tin roof. Sitting in the blind though, we saw maybe two ducks within range- nothing was flying in that fog. We’d get back at ducks Sunday morning as well- not as much bird movement without a couple hunters upstream kicking them around. Matt’s gun misfired twice- for it being a Benelli, it is awfully finicky. If there’s even a hint a moisture, the firing pin won’t go. Not a good quality in a duck hunting gun. I suspect he’ll upgrade to a Super Vinchy next season. We saw probably two ducks in range Sunday morning as well, and next to no movement. That is, until we started trying to paddle back. Then there were nothing but birds in the sky. We stopped and hid in the rice to see if they’d land, but no such luck.
In between duck hunting in the morning, and deer in the afternoon and evening, we got out both days to try and shoot some grouse. Matt admitted this is a much easier task late in October and into November when both the trees and underbrush have lost all their leaves. I can wholly see the appeal of doing this type of hunting over dogs- the first grouse we flushed nearly gave me a heart attack. I forgot how loud the things are. We saw probably two on Saturday, and then 3 or 4 on Sunday. But with all the foliage, it’s hard to see to shoot them before they get out of range. A pointer or setter would really make this easier. I did get video of Matt trying to get one. That will go up sometime this afternoon.
There really isn’t anything to write about deer- neither of us saw hide nor hair of them while actually in our stands. I didn’t hear or see any myself. Matt saw some run into the woods when he was driving back from his stand on the back 40. We put out apples and everything. Matt’s were mostly intact Sunday morning, but mine had disappeared, to be replaced with fresh new piles of bear crap. That means the bear was near the cabin even with us there. It’s a bit of a shame that there’s such a long wait for bear tags up there- having a bear on the property would be incredibly convenient were Matt to draw a tag for up there. But with only 4 preference points, he has another 6 years of waiting to get one up there.
So, it rained all the first day. The second day cleared up around noon, allowing for much better pictures of the fall colors. I’m choosing to think that at least I got a nice first run with my new camera. Enjoy some pictures of the beautiful Northwoods. I’m driving down to Illinois next weekend to see my mom, sister, and nephew. I’m heading back Sunday morning to go to the duck dinner event at Forequarter, put on by Hank Shaw. Matt may hunt while I’m gone, but we’re both pretty frazzled from the string of bad luck lately. A break might do us good, especially if the weather stays as weirdly warm as it has been.