Ahh, Come on, It Was a Great Day!
Sue was the one carrying the tag, and I was along to eat the noon sandwiches, and Zack, our eleven year old friend was along to show us what young legs and lungs are capable of. Zach’s parents are not hunters but Zach picked up the bug somewhere as he was one enthusiastic puppy. I had been wanting to take him for some time but it seems like it never was the right situation. Looking back I can’t say this was ideal either but it worked just the same.
Zack was a trooper – his first hunt and he found there are a few things out there that are just as dangerous as the bear we were hunting.
The snow was a problem alright as it seemed to have chased all the bear back into the sleep mode. I don’t think any of us had a lot of expectations when we saw the snow, but what the hey, we’re ready to go so lets do it. The last we saw Tom and Todd they were sitting under some bushes doing some calling. Us three were about a half mile away and still in ear shot of the calling when we round a hill side and there is a coyote at 356 yards and going away from the calls. I’d say he had been educated because he took one look at us and was out of sight within two seconds. When we got to the point where there was 8 inches of new snow over the top of old drifts we decided maybe we should just call this a picnic outing and have lunch. By the time we started hiking again the snow conditions were deteriorating and the overweight dude (me) starting breaking through, so my eyes started wondering pickup way more then looking for wildlife. I can still go down hill quite well so that worked out fine. I could almost keep up with Zack.
Our pickup is at the base of the far ridge. We were just going through the head of this draw and even though it doesn’t show the steepness, it was pretty.
On the way down we ran into about a dozen turkeys so that was rather exciting. I saw one set of tracks head over the hill the other way so gave him a crow call and sure enough he wanted to talk turkey. Played with him a bit before we continued on down. We hit the pickup at 4:00 PM and 2/3 of us were totally beat but Zach was still going strong. We did see a huge flock of turkeys on the drive out and they had it figured that they were safe for another 10 days before that season starts, so they did some real parading around for us.
I never cease to be amazed what I find out there. These little buttercups are growing on a verticle stone wall four foot up from the snow level.
We enjoyed the day, especially watching the enthusiasm of Zack out there making new discoveries. Hopefully we can have him along again, only when there might be a little more action involved. I also had fun telling Zack where I had run into bears in the past and of course all the stories that go with them. The family gets a little tired of hearing these stories so its kind of nice to have a fresh new pair of ears along.