Remembering the mornings of the first hunt
Normally, I like to use this column as a chance to promote a local outdoor or recreational club we have in Eastern Oregon.
But with hunting season starting up, it has me reminiscing about my youth and all of those early mornings in the fall.
My dad wasn’t into big game hunting too much, but he loved to bird hunt.
Pheasants were his particular bird of choice to drop from the sky.
So, naturally, I took to pheasant hunting right along with him.
I remember the nights before opening day we would get out the shotguns and give them a nice cleaning.
Cleaning the guns was as much a bonding experience as the actual hunting was.
Our dog, Taz — a Gordon Setter who didn’t know up from down but loved to chase anything that flew — would go bonkers once we got the gun cases out.
He knew what time of year it was.
I’m sure he didn’t get much sleep those nights before a hunt, either.
The next morning, we’d get up early and load Taz up in the truck and hit the road to our hunting destination.
Luckily for us, living in Pendleton my parents had a lot of friends with farms and ranches who let us use their land to hunt on — something that seems to happen less and less these days.
Days spent ‘blasting’
Once we got to our spot, we’d get out and spend the day “blasting” as my dad called it.
I remember the rush as soon as a rooster would pop up out of nowhere, waking me up out of my trance.
It’s a rush that you don’t forget and can’t wait to happen again.
And it’s that time of year again.
As much as we hate the fact that summer is ending, fall is a lot of people’s favorite time of year because of hunting season.
It’s a great chance for father, son and granddad to spend time together alone in the woods.
There’s no telling how many countless lessons are learned during the fall months spent chasing wild game.
This is a time of year when great memories are made.
Memories that will last a lifetime, whether you come home empty-handed or you get that trophy bull you’ve been chasing all these years.
So be sure to take the time to enjoy it while it lasts.