For those of you who have followed the site since the beginning, you know that my first outdoor love has always been waterfowling. In fact I moved to this great state for that very reason. Recent visitors to the site may be shocked to hear that, considering most of my time over the last three years has been spent behind the setters chasing prairie birds. That, and I’ve added a nearly pure white cocker to the dog team.
Looking back in my hunting journal, my last real waterfowling entry was September 1, 2006. I realize last year that I chased the spring snows and took Emma out on a couple of pass shooting attempts, but I’m talking true-blue migrating-fall waterfowling. I vividly remember that last day, because we were dodging thunderstorms in an attempt to score on some honkers. It was my first hunt without Emma, and while I thoroughly enjoyed seeing my buddy’s dog Storm shoulder the load, it really took the wind out of my sails not having my hunting partner along. With Emma sidelined, I put my waterfowling love on the shelf. It still stung, but I could leave her at home while I chased prairie birds with the setters…I just don’t think I could have done the same had I left the house with my waterfowling gear.
Over the last two to three years I’ve spent my falls chasing the prairie birds and getting my waterfowling fix in the spring with my camera. I love the prairie birds, and while they may have displaced the ducks at the top of my list of fowling pursuits, I would still feel a longing every time I’d see a circling group of mallards or a string of Canadas on the horizon. Some passions just can’t stay buried forever.
This weekend I’m hoping will mark my return to the ranks of waterfowling. I had alluded to this in the last post about decoy carving, and have been thinking about it endlessly since I’ve made the plans for this weekend. Sleep has been hard to come by the last week, and I’ve been on the edge of my seat watching the weather radar with yet another winter storm in the area. If all goes as planned I should have a pretty exciting blog post for the end of the weekend.