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 Post subject: Pahtridge and orange
PostPosted: November 27th, 2017, 2:37 pm 
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Joined: December 4th, 2001, 1:00 am
Posts: 5161
Location: Near the tying bench
Thanksgiving weekend found me making the annual trek to the family camp for Thanksgiving festivities and hunting adventures. So, after reviewing the weather and deciding not to attempt the drive Wednesday night, my fiance and I packed up the truck and headed to meet my father Thursday morning. This is no small feat, as she has 3 English springer spaniels and I have one- all of whom are quite active (sometimes productive, sometimes destructive- but always liver and white). We met up with my father, who brings his own English springer to the mix (the lone black and white)- making a total of 5 dogs in camp. That's two more dogs than people for those keeping track.

We spent Thursday around camp cooking turkey and shooting the proverbial bull. With a break in the action while the turkey finished roasting, my fiance and I slipped out to exercise the dogs by taking them for a hunt. We opted to hunt the usual route- a dead end road that's been productive late season over the years. From the looks of the bobcat/lynx scat in the road- we weren't the only ones with the same idea in mind. After a mile hike down and back with nothing to show but one fleeting chance at a flushed bird, we hopped back into the truck to head back towards camp.

As luck would have it- a bird ran across the road shortly after. After offering the shot to my fiance, who offered to handle the dogs instead, I was fortunate to have the bird run back out into the road for an easy shot, affording my springer (who's still very green to the wild bird game) a chance to work a wild bird. His nose is a bit off, which is typical of dogs with Lyme disease (and of which we found out he had on Tuesday night), but he did his part and brought the bird to hand. Friday found me and my springer in a similar situation, though the bird drifted a little farther from the road. No problem. The dog worked the bird out and brought it to hand easily.

There appeared to be plenty of birds around, though none were seen budding up in the trees over the course of the weekend (which is odd). Upon cleaning the birds we had harvested, which were cleaned for a wild game feast Saturday night, all had been primarily feeding on wild strawberry leaves- an odd, but interesting find. I'll be keeping track of roadside strawberry patch locations next year. Wild game dinners tend to the extravagant (as anyone familiar with the late Jim Harrison's musings knows)- and the one into which the birds were spent was no different. Complete with the above mentioned partridge, were moose cutlets from a small bull my father and I harvested earlier in the fall and a bottle of fine wine.

Sunday found my fiance and I walking the orange-clad dog pack with coffee (for us) and a Cuban cigar (for me) in the snow. There's something about watching five bird dogs, dressed in orange, working a two track road and the nearby bird cover over while sipping dark roasted coffee that had been perked over an open flame, through the lens of a late-November snow storm. Near perfect.

Which reminds me- it's time to re-order my supply of Bird Dog from Matt's Coffee (now the Speckled Ax- https://speckledax.com/) and maybe a few extra beans for holiday gifts for the family. Life is good.

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 Post subject: Re: Pahtridge and orange
PostPosted: November 27th, 2017, 8:42 pm 
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Joined: August 28th, 2002, 12:00 am
Posts: 1294
Location: Standish, ME
Nice job painting that picture - blood pressure dropped just reading it!


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 Post subject: Re: Pahtridge and orange
PostPosted: November 28th, 2017, 10:02 am 
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Joined: October 16th, 2006, 12:00 am
Posts: 1322
Location: Harrison
Nice read.
Good color combo for soft hackle wet fly too.

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 Post subject: Re: Pahtridge and orange
PostPosted: November 28th, 2017, 3:04 pm 
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Joined: February 14th, 2007, 1:00 am
Posts: 1232
Location: New Hampshire
Yup, makes me anxious to be home around Christmas and tromp around in some woods. Santa has snow shoes for all the kids... just need some snow!

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"Fishermen...spending their lives in the fields and woods...are often in a more favorable mood for observing her, in the intervals of their pursuits, than philosophers or poets even, who approach her with expectation." - Thoreau


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 Post subject: Re: Pahtridge and orange
PostPosted: November 28th, 2017, 6:40 pm 
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Joined: December 2nd, 2001, 1:00 am
Posts: 3287
Location: Vassalboro, Maine
Good post---nice to have 4 paws around...

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