Monday, September 6, 2010

Hunting: Sage Hens and Blue Grouse

Bird season opened September 1. Sticking to our Montana opening day tradition we headed to the hills in search of blue grouse. Since our best spot has been overrun with cows of late we decided to hunt a different spot. With the forecast for highs in the upper 60s we knew the hunt would be a short one even though the spot we picked was heavily timbered and would offer somewhat cooler temps at least until around noon when the sun topped the surrounding ridges.

In all our travels around Montana I don't think we've ever hunted a place so loaded with grouse groceries...wild strawberry, red raspberries (for us a first in Montana), several red berries and lots of forbs, clover and other lush greeneries seemed to scream grouse but...The dogs found just one, a lone spruce (Franklin's) grouse to boot.

Getting spruce grouse to flush is usually the hardest part but this time around the shooting proved even more difficult...laughable actually if it weren't so damn pathetic. Anyway after Annie pointed it twice and I missed it three times finally connected on numero 4 and, well, what can I say. Sort of deja vue all over again. After the way I ended last season perhaps a few practice sessions, eh?

But then we've found ziltch since--no blues, no more spruce, no sage hens--so, hell, why bother...

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