Thursday, March 12, 2009
Day 4 Progressing Nicely
Day 4 started out cold and windy. Emma's foot seemed fine this morning after last nights thorn removal so I traveled north to my Doll's Head covert. Just a couple of minutes out of the truck and we wild flush two grouse that really gets Emma's blood running, along with her feet. As we work our way through cover I see Emma bump a woodcock in the distance, then minutes later I almost step on one camouflaged against the leaf littered ground. A little while later I can just hear Emma's beeper on point mode. As I dodge hawthorns and alders she seems off to my left, but no she's off to my right. So I'm running a few yards to my right and stopping then running a few yards to my left and stopping trying to figure out just where she is. Finally I decide that she is indeed off to my left and as I hurry toward her I spy her running through the woods obviously hot after a flushed bird. Whether she bumped the bird or it flew on its own I'd never know but you always have to trust your dog and I was happy that she had held the point for as long as she had. As we worked our way toward the end of the cover a woodcock lifted between us spooked by either Emma or me. The far end of cover is often productive but today it was void of birds so we started back toward the truck. As we passed an alder filled swampy area Emma's beeper goes on point mode again. She's not far away this time and when I reach her she is on the far side of a small stream pointing into a clump of alder. The stream is just a little to deep to wade and just a little to wide to jump at this point. I snap two quick pictures of her and work my way upstream several yards to find a spot narrow enough for me to leap. As I land on the far bank I see the bird flush out of the alder clump just ahead of Emma's nose. After telling her what a good birddog she is we continue to work our way toward the truck. Minutes later her beeper again is telling me she's on point somewhere ahead. Once again I'm on the wrong side of the stream and before I can cross I see the bird in the air and Emma in hot pursuit. By now the truck is in sight. I'm cold, tired, hungry, and pleased with Emma's work today. She found some birds, bumping some and pointing others, and hunted the cover vigorously. In my mind we had an excellent day. Tomorrow Emma can rest as my preliminary plans are to take Jim-Bob, Zeke, and Copper to some new coverts I discovered last fall in Northern Cambria Co.