I 'spose ist naturl wen a fella gits inta his late season, tha he starts ta thinkin an ta reminisin . Im that an I do ! Tyme with ol friends seams fewer an mor precious. Thas jus th way it ist !
Me cuzzin an me wast sittin in fronta th fire in th cabin durin this deer season an reminisin an laughlin an sippin a tody an th talkin went frm hunts ta guns ta friends an naturly ta Dawgs !!
Ovr th years I hav had many....sum betr thn sum....butt none bad. Mebbe th first ist th best ! Wen I wast early in me years, an me lungs an me legs wer strong, thar wast nuthin tha stirred me like chasin th 'ruff grouse. Huntin thm alone ist fun,....butt nawt as complet as with a Dawg !
I remember my first; he wast truly mine, an he made me proud. Duke, his name, wast a liver an white Brittany an his nature, nawt me trainin, made him mebbe th best Dawg fer ol 'ruff tha I evr followed thru th thickets, crabs an th brambles. He wast reel gud at his trade ! Sur whist I culd hav him back.....an also me lungs an me legs ! He wast close workin, covrd all th covr, pointed steady, flushed wen told, an glory culd he retreev !! I thinks at tymes th only reason he hunted so hard wast soos he culd bring em back. It made me sur try hard nawt ta disappoint him with me shot. He knew howta shame me with his luk wen I din do me part. Thar wast nevr a need ta work hard at his retreevin....an therfor we nevr covrd whas a priority !!
(I'm gittin tyred with all th walkin.......soos I thinks I will finish ths tomara ) Gud nite !
Rupe/PAThis message has been edited. Last edited by: Rupe/PA,
Know what you say! My first was a beagle named Peanut,lawd could that dawg bawl!!
Year's end always seems to be a time for memories, and reflection, but also a time to consider the future.
As a kid just starting out in the hunting fields back in the late 1950's I had a beagle. Durn good rabbit dog, he was! Sometimes he would get on the track of a pheasant, too. He had a different kind of bawl when he was on a bird and so I knew that I had to run and keep up with him in order to be there at the flush.
Later, I had a series of English Springer Spaniels. They were the "field bred" type and not the "show dog" type. There is quite a difference.
I got my first one when I lived in Arizona and was hunting desert quail and also waterfowl on the Colorado River. We then moved to upstate New York and then to Michigan where I continued with the waterfowl, grouse, pheasants, and woodcock hunting with my spaniels. "November Rose" was my best bird flusher and duck retriever. To say that she was good would be an understatement!
I retired to Tenasi and sadly my hunting dogs passed away. There isn't much in the line of bird hunting down here, except for turkeys, although I've been thinking of getting back into waterfowl hunting. Mostly now I just plink away at squirrels, and make my annual autumn deer hunt, and spring turkey hunt.
Recently, there was an article in our newspaper about a local man who is 91 years old and has been a hunter since he was 10. He used to do a lot of quail hunting with setters back in the days when the south was flush with quail. He still gets out for deer hunting every year. This year he collected a doe. He says that he will hunt until he drops.
So will I!
Know what you believe in. Fight for your beliefs. Never compromise away your rights.
I gess we left it with me nawt worryin 'bout tryin ta teach th Duke abut "priortys"
On one gorges October day we wast huntin sum thickets an brambles on th slopes an th cuts of a reclaimed strip mine area in Indiana Counry. Th goin wast tuff.......an I starts ta cheet ! I left th thick fer th eazy walkin an let th Duke bust th covr. Sur 'nough, rite ta me right a 'ruff busts frm covr, whizzes past me at knee high an goin ta me left, rokits 'cross th open... an jus as ol 'ruff desides ta spin right 'round anothr strip pile,....he runs plumb inta me shot,....an disapeers frm sight ! With Duke, I never held ta th rule tha saya ta tell em ta fetch....an oft aftr th 'ruff he went an disapeerd ! A minite latr here he cums aprancin an proud wif his head high an grinning (iffn a Dawg kin grin with a mouf fulla 'ruff)......an cums ta me an spits at me feets.....WHA IN TARNASHION !!!... a "kat" !!!! Araaaaagh !!! Naawe this wast a "dead kat" an ya culd tell frm its silowette. It had hair (grey an dirty white as I recall)....butt wast stif an dri 'bout 3/4 inch thick an luked ta be 'bout 3 foots in length. An thar at me feets it clattered !!
Duke din bask in his acompleshmnt....butt spun 'round.....an went an brung me th 'ruff. Wha a retreevr !! Naaw 'fore ya asks, we din putt th kat inta th pouch, jus th 'ruff, an we din bring th kat bak ta th cabin.
Ill also tell ya 'fore ya gits ta raisin yur brows an ta shakin yur head.....I had me a witness....an this tale ist as tru as me still bein able ta write these wrds. Th Duke wast a reel gud Dawg !!
Now you take Ol' Ranger, the beat up, slit eared black and tan. His noggin had been wooled by more coons than you could skin and hang in a shed. He warn't my dawg but he coulda been. He was anybody's ol' dawg that'd hunt with him. Actually belonged to Willard, our neighbor to the west, his land laying up the creek from ours. Ol' Ranger was wide betwixt the ears, and crammed in his big brain was enuff huntin' knowledge about coons and squirrels to put in a collection of huntin' books. It'd be an instant classic. [Don't'cha wish you could talk to a REAL dawg and get to know what he knows?]
You didn't take Ol' Ranger huntin', 'cause he was already huntin' - always. Don't reckon he ever quit day or night, mostly all by his lonesome. The hills were alive with the sound of his music continually.
Our neighbor to the east (down the creek) had a scope of trees on a knobby hill with plenty of squirrels. I went across our upper pasture, crossed the fence and and still hunted my way into the grove. Heard some rustlin' in the leaves, looked around and there was Ol' Ranger. I wasn't surprised to see him, but I could tell he hadn't expected to find me. Stood lookin' at me for quite a while. I think he was disappointed. Finally, with somber steps he walked to me, looked up as if to say, "Looks like I'm stuck with you. Let's get to it." I said, "Glad to see ya. Can you tree me a couple of squirrels? I ain't seen any yet."
The doctor had arrived. By then he was too old - and far too wise - to get in any sort of a hurry, but dreckly he struck and soon was treed. I peered through the tree top, a hickory as I recall, and saw nothing. Ol' Ranger hushed for a minute, looked at me pitiful-like, and laid into his choppin' voice again. Yaup! Yaup! Yaup! Looked at me. Yaup! Yaup! Yaup! I strained into the treetop, again. Yaup! Yaup! Yaup!
The dawg was gettin' a mite peeved, so I searched harder. A fella can overlook things. I suddenly saw why Ol' Ranger thought I was nuts. There was a grey squirrel in plain sight, not 15 feet up, head down on the side of the tree glarin' at us both, twitchin' his tail like a flag waver. Kinda embarassin' . . .
Anyhow, I shot it out. It thumped the ground at our feet. I picked it up, expecting Ol' Ranger to head after another one. Nope. He pointed his nose skyward and went back to yauping. 'He's done got too old and senile', I figured. "C'mon Ranger! - c'mon boy! - go git us another'n!" Nope. I dangled the grey in front of his eyes, said, "Looky here ol' fella, we done got this'un. Now go git us another'n!" Nope. He rolled his eyes like I was the nut he'd he'd always taken me to be, and laid into his work again. Yaup! Yaup! Yaup! "C'mon boy! - go git us another'n!" Yaup! Yaup! Yaup!
I finally decided to walk off and leave him there for the rest of his life if he wanted to stay. He could bark day and night over an empty tree if he wanted. T'warn't my ol' dawg, nohow. I'd gone a few paces, then it hit me. Reckon there's another one up there? Reckon that's the one he sniffed out and treed, not knowing this gray was already in it? I went back. I'd never known Ol' Ranger to lie at a tree. Don't reckon anyone else ever did, either. And he surely knew too much to be confused. And I'm sure that by now he was convinced I was the idiot. My walkin' off didn't slow him down a bit; he'd stayed at the tree---he was used to hunting by himself, y'see. If I was too dumb to hunt with him, he didn't care.
So I went back to the tree, lissenin' to him 'yaup', and believing every word he said. Some dawgs can't lie: it's just not in their natures. Let every man be a liar, but let the word of a good dawg be true. It took quite a while, and my neck got sore, but sure enough, way up in the tippy top, flattened against a limb amongst the leaves was a big ol' fat fox squirrel. When I saw it and raised my rifle Ol' Ranger got excited and really laid into it, then. I pulled the trigger and out it tumbled. Immediately Ol' Ranger hushed, looked at me with pity and relief in his eyes. I told him, "Thanks for your help old timer, and I'll never doubt you again. Sorry. But these two are enough for me, so I'll leave it with you. See ya down the trail."
He stared after me like he couldn't believe what a wimp I was for quitting already. I looked back a couple of times and he was still staring. Finally he shrugged and went on about his business.
Now a dawg like that oughta be a legend . . .
As long as there's Limb Bacon a man'll eat! (But mebbe not his wife...)
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