Scouting. Kind of…

Posted: 07/28/2012 in Archery, Gable Sporting Goods, Hunting, Scouting
Tags: , , , ,

So I had a plan to scout yesterday, but to paraphrase Terry Pratchett, it was more of a “PLN!”

“Whut’s the plan, Rob?” said one of them.
“Okay, lads, this is what we’ll do. As soon as we see somethin’, we’ll attack it. Right?”
This caused a cheer.
“Ach, ’tis a good plan,” said Daft Wullie.” (The Wee Free Men, 2004)

The plan was somewhat simple – head to camp (2+ hour drive), look about a bit, make sure nothing had been broken, stolen, or chewed up by pesky critters, move a feeder and check a few stands.  But here’s the complication, it’s summer, my daughter is here for another two weeks, and we really haven’t done much this summer, so the plan includes taking the wife, daughter, and all four woofers with us.  So now it’s go for a walk at camp on the main trails with four big dogs, the wife and daughter, and then when they’re tuckered out dash off, move a feeder, fill it, check one stand, and get back before they get bored.

Heh. Yeah, I thought the same thing you just did before we ever left the house, but what the heck, it was worth a try. 🙂

Here are the woofers involved:

L to R – Brody (GSP), Gretchen (Blue Tick/Black Lab), Zelda (GSD) These are our three rescue dogs

This is Cinders (GSP), he’s our only non-rescue dog, he’s seven years old, but his nickname is still ‘da puppy.’

We’ve been trying to get these critters more trail-savvy, so we decided that we’d use our hunting dog training collars today and only use leashes if needed.  It worked out very well, with Brody, Gretchen and Zelda staying mostly close to us, while Cinders zoomed everywhere, but came back close every time we asked him to. (We were worried about Zelda mainly, this is where she was found at five months old, wandering around with a bad skin infection, missing a lot of fur and skinny as a rail.  Over the last year of veterinarian care, we’ve discovered that she’s allergic to everything. If she catches a rabbit, she’ll most likely explode.)

Our camp is in Taylor County, GA, and by ‘our camp’ I mean where I’ve been given permission to hunt. The property belongs to one of my friend’s uncles, 875 acres of rolling hills covered in oak, pine, and sweet sand.  Oh yeah, and deer, coyotes, armadillos, squirrels, turkey, and crows.   We have over twenty ladder stands out that we maintain and move if we find a better spot, good trails wide enough for a pickup truck over half of the property, wide enough for golf carts where it’s too narrow for a full size vehicle.

Yesterday, it actually felt like it was on the surface of the sun.

It was in the mid 90’s, with about 60% humidity, which is far lower than the temperature when I was in Herat, Afghanistan, but the humidity made the temperature miserable.

We walked from the cabins to what we call Beaver Gulch, both to look at the area and because I had remembered (wrongly) that the creek down at the bottom was shallow and had a few small pools in it for the dogs to drink from. We had water with us, but the biggest dog was starting to breath fast and hard, so I wanted to get him cooled down as soon as possible.  The stream bed was barely damp, so we turned back around and headed for the beaver pond in the middle of the property. At this point, I have to say that I failed in my duty to take some good video or photographs, because I was starting to melt too, but let me say this – a fat dog jumping in a beaver pond and paddling around while he drinks was a pretty amusing sight.

I gathered up a Moultrie feeder  on the way through to the beaver pond, an older bucket ‘on demand’ feeder, but at this point, I figured I wouldn’t be able to get it where I wanted it during this trip.  At least I could have it near the cabin for the next trip though, so I lugged it along with us.

At the cabin, I took some photographs of bucks that have been harvested either from the camp, or near the camp, that we have on the wall.  Hope everyone enjoys these bucks as much as we do!

V-Tine – Last year’s ‘big boy’ from our camp.

Now the new plan is to go back in a week or two and set up the feeder, put out a mineral block or two and check the stands I meant to check today.  Next time, though, I’ll leave a lot earlier, and use the golf carts, and for that trip, sadly, the woofers will have to stay at home.

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