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Friday, July 08, 2016

Youth Hunt 2016

As always, the annual youth hunt is my
favorite hunt.  I can focus strictly on being
a guide and host and not on trying to shoot

This year went very well.  I took the same
young man out that I did last year.  What
a difference a year makes!  We ended up
in the reservoir of the local WMA.  I haven't
hunted in there in several years.  I got the good
G2 from a buddy about what impoundment to
choose and the young man, his dad, and I
headed out.

The habitat has changed there recently and
I had a tough time finding the right combination
of open water, hydrilla, and cover.  We spent
several anxious minutes stuck on a mud
tusset.  I was afraid I'd have to get in the
fairly deep water and shove us off, but the
push pole finally freed us.

I eventually located a fairly good spot and set
up.  We got the decoys out (ringers and coots
mostly) and camoed up against a reed island.
I'm writing this long after the event and don't
remember where the wind was, but we were
looking SSW.

There were a lot of ducks flying around
when shooting time came.  He was banging
away with that little 20ga pump for all he
was worth.  Suddenly his dad said that
he'd knocked one down.  I hadn't even
seen it.  But, there it lay belly up at
the edge of the open water - a nice hen

We kept at it.  But the ringers come through
at jet speed.  We had lots of fulvous ducks
around, but they are skittish and we weren't
quite where I thought they would want to
be.  But his dad and I kept whistling to them.
Low and behold, he knocked one of those very
rare ducks down too.

We ended the day when his shoulder gave out.
What a lot of fun and what a great way to
get a first duck.