Search This Blog

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Opening Day of Virginia's Fall Turkey Season (Blog 213)

I love the various opening days of the fall hunting seasons and try never to miss them in Virginia and West Virginia.  So it was with great anticipation that I headed out this morning to pursue turkeys in Franklin County.  Indeed, I went to the same farm where I have killed turkeys on four of the last five openers.

Today, however, I never saw or heard a turkey respond to my calls.  I arrived early, hoping to scatter birds off the roost, then proceeded to  wend my way through woodlot after woodlot, field after field, and every other form of habitat I came across - and failed to locate a flock.

I then drove to two Botetourt County farms where I have permission to hunt and struck out there, too.  We have had a tremendous acorn crop and the turkeys apparently are not traveling very much because food is so easy to find.  Still, I should have come across something.  Perhaps the hatch was not a good one this fall.  Or maybe my game plan for the day was flawed.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

David's Doe (Blog 212)

My son-in-law David Reynolds and I went bowhunting on family land in Craig County Saturday, and David made an excellent shot on a mature doe after 8:00 A.M. Earlier, we had agreed that the two of us would make two turkey yelps or kee-kees if  either of us killed a deer.  That signal would let each of us know the status of the other.

Thus, I heard David make two yelps.  Although David's calling was, well, not very turkey-like, his aim was perfect and later he recounted his tagging of the whitetail.  I, meanwhile saw nothing and my poor fortune continued in the evening when I only saw two whitetails, one at 80 yards and another while I was walking to the vehicle.

A memorably day for David, a forgettable one for me.  But I am heading out this morning to try again.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Eye Problems (Blog 211)

This weekend, I had my hunting plans all organized and ready to implement.  I was going to bowhunt Friday after school here in Botetourt, go to West Virginia for opening day of the fall turkey season, and spend Sunday here in Virginia bowhunting.
 But Thursday while at school in my second block English 9 Honors class, I felt like a huge eyelash had appeared in my right eye, followed some minutes later by more eyelashes.  Unfortunately, they were not eyelashes but blood.  A blood vessel had hemorrhaged, two tears in my retina had occurred, and I could not see out of the eye.

Thursday afternoon was spent at my eye doctor's and Friday afternoon was spent in laser surgery mending the tears.  The doctor said it would take anywhere from five days to a month for me to regain full vision in the right eye.  My goal today, Saturday, will not to be to hunt turkeys but see if I can figure out how to shoot a crossbow by using my left eye to sight in.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Opening Day of Virginia's Bow Season (Blog 210)

This morning, I arose at 4:05 to go to Craig County to hunt the property that Elaine and I own there in the beautiful Johns Creek Valley.  I almost always hunt there on opening day because I almost always have a chance to tag a deer there on the season opener.

This morning, though, the wind rocked my stand about and by 10:30 I had endured enough.  There is something extremely disconcerting about being 15 feet off the ground and experiencing a tree undulating back and forth.  Plus, the temperature seemed to be growing colder all morning.

When I arrived home, I called a Botetourt County landowner, where I have permission to hunt, and asked if I could come over.  The gentleman answered in the affirmative, and with the temperature continuing to drop, I felt the deer would be moving early this evening.

My supposition turned out to be right, as I killed a doe at 2:45 P.M., just short of an hour after I set up in a ground blind - no tree stand hunting for me in those high winds.  I was home in time for dinner with Elaine, and we played Scrabble while listening to Prairie Home Companion.  Although Elaine beat me in Scrabble, any day where I can kill a deer is a good one.