Friday, November 17, 2017

Fast Week

Sitting on the Stand
My computer went goofy on me this week and I finally got it fixed.  It is simply amazing how much it has become an integral part of our lives, unfortunately.  So last weekend was the end of our deer hunting in the zone which we hunt, Zone 2, so I decided to head back up with Jack and Ben to try and bag some venison.  The good new was that the cold weather during the previous week had been cold enough to freeze the swamp and one could easily walk out to the areas that we hunted when Rich was still alive.  It was pretty good as on opener one would have needed hip boots and a lot of ambition to trudge through the swamp, which was as full of water as I've ever seen in the 10 or so years I have hunted this property.  There are a lot of deer around as Brett had planted a wildlife plot and 8 or so deer, mostly does and fawns, would come in every afternoon/evening to partake in the feast, even though there was a lot of standing corn in the area, apparently deer love the sugar beets he planted!  Deciding to show up for the Saturday afternoon hunt I walked out to the island where I used to put my stand and sat on the one facing the Northeast, we call Bobby's stand (Rich's brother from Seattle who hunted with us those last years Rich was alive).  It was very nice, the temperature was in the low 30's and we had a dusting of snow which made it easy to see anything coming.  Unfortunately nothing came other than a few small flocks of Tundra Swans flying by.  Sitting there till dark, 12 foot up in the tree, is quite a bit better than sitting in a ground blind as I did the previous week.  Admittedly it was warmer but at least I could see quite a ways.  The fresh snow also gave us some indication of any deer movement however there were few if any tracks around my stand.  Often times the second weekend of hunting is not as good because there are less people pushing the deer around.  At sunset I met Jack and Ben, who were sitting just south of me and we walked out of the swamp.  Brett had shot a nice doe Friday evening and we told him that we would tag one if he had the opportunity however there were no shots that day.  We got up about 5:30 on Sunday and headed back to the stands.  Sunday morning was quite quiet yet I did se fresh deer tracks in my footprints in the snow as I walked out.  It appeared to be exactly what Brett was seeing, a doe and 2 fawns.  Leaving at noon, we went back to Jack's cabin as he was heading back in the afternoon, I decided to stay and hunt the evening.  Jack has a nice stand in a good location so I decided to use his for the duration of the hunting time.  I arrived at the stand around 2:30 and hunted till 5:15 before walking out.  I knew Brett was still out there so I waited for him, he returned to say he had shot a nice doe around 2:00 but nothing else came through.  He tagged it, I loaded up and headed south.  As stated, it was nice to get back in the swamp but I guess this year I was one of the 70% of hunters that don't bag a deer each year.  No big deal, the important thing is to get out with Jack's son Ben and get the next generation interested in hunting.

Pete's Pail of Fish
The next thing on the agenda is ice fishing!  My friend Pete has been out with his friend Dave Genz fishing somewhere north of Highway 2 in Minnesota.  Apparently they nailed some nice 12 inch crappies and a few good sunnies on there trip.  Pete told me that Dave will be on this week's show, John Gillespies Waters and Woods fishing with Dave on the Mississippi not to far upstream from where I live.  I guess it might have been more productive fishing than hunting but you can't be in two places at once!  Oh well, I have a pretty full schedule the next 3 weeks, the snow blower needs to get mounted to the lawn tractor, the shed needs cleaning, Thanksgiving is next week, I need to bring my boat back to Frankie's on November 27th to get the scratch on the bottom fixed as well as the rod locker lid replaced.  On the 29th I head to Scottsdale Arizona for a 3 day convention for the TTA, the Ice Fishing show is on the weekend I get back, December 2nd and 3rd.  Reports have Red Lake ice at about 7 to 8 inches so by December 8th I'll be ready to haul up the house for a couple of months of great fishing!  They upped the limit of walleyes on Red to 4, of which only 1 can be over 17 inches, which is fabulous. I know Mark and I would like to fish on the Reservation for trout like we did last year, that was fun.  The wheel house is pretty well set to go, I need to check the air in the tires and straighten things out a bit but that won't take too long.  Winter is here and even though it is somewhat mild, at Red Lake they are averaging highs in the low 20's and low's in the single digits, just what the doctor ordered, making ice!!!  I might even get Pete to take me with for some early season crappie fishing.

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