Wednesday, October 19, 2016
When the grouse season opened a month ago, I rambled around the forest up at the cabin in the wolf country with all three dogs and no shotgun. The idea was to see what the boys could find in the way of coveys and try to gauge what might be shoot-able later in the season. The condition of the forest was pretty much as if September and July were the same season. The dogs did their job, flushing what I can only assume were multiple birds. Being pretty hard of hearing anymore and not even being able to see the dogs at 20 feet into the brush, I just assumed there was a good crop of grouse to mess with later on down the line. At one point there were four grouse in the trees craning downward watching all the canine mayhem beneath their safe perch and then two more flushes before I called the boys back to heel. Pretty hopeful, that.
Over the past weekend, I returned with the intention of hunting and picking cranberries.
Much had changed. Most of the leaves were down and the woods had opened nicely.
Where in August there were oodles of green cranberries, I picked exactly nine. 9!
And with shotgun in hand exactly one grouse was encountered. One! Mysterious indeed.
The sunset was killer, the whiskey in the glass was mellow, and anytime in that wild place is great grand stuff.