Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Perfect Fall Day for Duck Hunting

Perfect Fall Day
 I was reading a story the other day on Mysteries Internal Worth One Thousand Words; or, Life Abbreviated. (great read) and thought about how good story telling affects each reader differently. It gives us the chance to paint our own pictures from the experiences that each of us has been through. Unlike Erin, I am not the best story teller so I like to combine photos with my stories. The photo above represents a snapshot of my hunting experience from Saturday morning. I have been asked why I like to hunt ducks, there are many reasons for this, but mostly I enjoy being outdoors, on the water, and I’m definitely a morning person.

This morning found me up hiking in the dark before the sun came up. I was excited about the day and left the house earlier than normal. The air was cold for the desert, lining the cactus with a thin layer of frost. A cold front had just blown through the state and I was hoping it had brought ducks with it. The work of setting up decoys in the predawn was keeping me warm, and as I neared the end of my task I noticed some small snow crystals floating in the headlamps light. Once the decoys were placed and I had settled into the cattails. I checked the clock, twenty minutes till shooting light. Sitting on the edge of the water motionless, the cold started to creep in through my hands and face. The first rays of light started to appear I heard a flock of divers coming down from the lake, the wind of their wings like the sound of a distant jet as they passed over me. After another ten minutes it was time to shoot, and right on cue a flock swung past the decoys, after a single call, they turned around and cupped there wings committing to the decoys. I knew after firing two shots it would be a special morning as two drakes hit the water.

Desert Duck Hunting
After an hour of exciting calling and shooting, I had one bird left to reach my limit. I sat there and just listened to the sounds around me and noticing the display of colors as the clouds broke up the suns rays. The leaves on the cottonwoods had begun to turn a brilliant yellow. The tamarisks had taken on the orange of winter and the cattails were a transitory green tan. This mixed with patches of deep blue sky and heavy gray clouds made the river a beautiful location to be. This is something even with pictures and words that should still be experienced by everyone. It does not matter if it is with a shotgun or fly rod in hand, or from a bicycle or hiking boots. Being outdoors at these magical times of the day and seasons are what recharge us, the activity is just the excuse to get there.
Limit of Divers


  1. Great post. Great day. Sorry I missed it


  2. Nice post! Found your blog via a tweet from @OwlJones.

  3. Thanks for the nice words, and I have an Arkansas mallard hunt on my dream list also.