Friday, June 26, 2009

Porky Opener

Opening week end a few years back, too warm and everything all thick and green, but you just have to get out with the dogs. We were in one of our favorite covers on our very first push and the dogs were a little ways out of sight but we could hear the bells pretty well. Then we heard the barking. When we arrived on the scene Frieda and Belle, our pointers, were tag teaming a porcupine. Frieda had to be pulled off it. They were covered in quills. We walked them back to the truck. I had read that snipping off the tip of the quill made it easier to pull out because it released the air in the quill. We got out the clippers and our leathermans and went to work. After removing enough quills from their muzzles so they could drink water the puppies had had enough and were impossible to hold.
We needed a vet. We stopped at our favorite watering hole, the Nimrod, and started going through the phone book calling all the local veterinarians. Every call was greeted with a taped message instructing us to go to Green Bay. Rick at Peshtigo Veterinarian Service was in. So we headed back home to Peshtigo with our pitiful pointers. He told us not to clip the quills if it ever happened again. It gives him less to grab onto. He sedated them and pulled out the quills. Gave them some antibiotics and we were on our way. We now had two unconscious pointers in the back of the truck.

We thought this was hilarious and laid them out on my front lawn. While we drank a few beers we demonstrated how well behaved our dogs were to passersby. ‘Watch this, Stay!’ ‘Play Dead’ we thought it was pretty funny. Pretty soon my Father came walking over. My parents only live a few houses away. My mother had seen us drinking beer in the front yard with the dogs laid out and sent him over to find out what was happening. She told him it looked like the dogs had died and those two goofballs are having a wake in the front yard. Quite the opening day.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

German Shorthairs and Cast Iron Frying Pans

On our previous post, old uncle Scooter pretty much summed up the enjoyment we have shared the last 20 years. My post has more to do with camp cooking. Nothing tastes better than your bacon, eggs and taters cooked in cast iron over an open fire. Cast Iron requires a bit more care than your modern YUPPIE pan. Don't sink it in soapy dishwater and set it out to dry. The only sure fire method to preserve those precious pans is to let the pointers lick them clean. That's it! Your pans will look like new forever. The more liver colored the pointer the better the potlickin' will be. So if yer out camping with friends and shorthairs just remember, if ya want clean cast iron, let the Liver dogs do the dishes. (TRUE STORY)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Woodcock Flights and Shorthair Camping

5 days camping up in the north woods of Wisconsin in mid October. Not the Indian summer Octobers we have had lately but the ones where the dogs watering dishes were sometimes frozen over in the morning and maybe you woke up to snow flurries. We didn’t do it in a hard shell camper like we do now. We did it in a tent. We were waiting for the flights. That glorious event when the woodcock head south and book resting space in the local habitat. When pointer’s eyes glaze over at the overwhelming scent of multiple ‘woodies’ and the shoulders of the bird hunters ache from the days snap shooting at double and triple flushes, when the pocket full of shells runs low on a push through big cover, the flights, the flights are a little slice of bird hunting heaven.

Cool nights drinking beer around a campfire, how about that shot? Remember when Otis was curled around that popple in between us pointing a tight holding woodcock, and Clyde staring up at that dead woodie stuck by its bill in the crook of a pecker pole popple. Laughing like hyenas, put another log on the fire and crack open another cold one. Late at night finally asleep in our bags only to wake up with the dogs howling back at a pack of coyotes that may have come a little too close to camp.

Frosty mornings clutching coffee cups, huddled around the fry pan bacon, eggs and taters sharing with the hounds, asking what cover should we start the day with? Let’s go ‘where they ain’t’ (secret spot) we have to beat those guys from Cedarburg there. We do, just pulling in ahead of them, laughing like hyenas again. We limit out in about 2 hours. Now we head to down town Athelstane, talking smart at the Nimrod (best Pizza in the area by the way). In the afternoon we scout some new covers, park at some likely spot just at sunset and wait for 5 o’clock Charlie, see a few woodcock fly into that popple thicket on the other side of the marsh. Maybe we will hit that spot first thing tomorrow, Nah; we got to beat those claim jumpers from Cedarburg one more time.

German Shorthairs Back In The Day

Notice the nice little pile of Woodcock on the shell box. The Pointer on the left is Clyde aka "The Southern Gentleman" Otis is on the right, notice how his ankles are taped like a Thorough Bred race horse, he was! Clyde was about 14 in this Pic. and Otis was around 9 or 10. Our current pile of Shorthairs are 10 and younger. That's how long these boys have been gone, they were true legends in Northern Wi. Grouse woods and taght Me and Scooter a great deal about bird hunting, and spoiled us as well.