Saturday, November 24, 2012

Buffleheading with the Beauty...

There was a newbie in the blind, she even brought her own gun...

Ready for some more action...

I was quite pumped and the plan was set.

My youngest would go duck hunting with me.

This became more than just a hunt, actually it became a potential "rite of passage", an initiation of the youngest warrior in a clan of duck hunters.  I prayed for all things to be right in the morning, my thoughts rested solely on offering my passion to a curious youngster.  Repeated I asked myself if she would like duck hunting.  My wife simply said that if she wants to go then it certainly is the right time.  I went to bed imagining the hunt, the possibilities, and started to doze.

A little big, but she adapted...
I didn't sleep too much and was up way too early, but it gave me time to have it all ready.  Out came the gear, jackets, gloves, boots, and all other necessary items.  The only difference, there was beside my traditional spread the same set up for a first grader.  I couldn't wait for my little beauty to get up, and she didn't make me pace too long. 

When Leah shot down the stairs, she was greeted with toast and coffee (milk with some coffee) for breakfast.  While we ate, I watched a decent flock of mergansers swim along the shoreline by the six bufflehead decoys I had thrown out earlier on the high water.  For us, this was a good omen for I did not want our first duck to be the lowly common merganser.  I wanted our prize to be a drake bufflehead just like the ones Leah admired Thanksgiving morning.

Shortly thereafter, we put on our gear and made way under the shore.

Armed with a pink Red Ryder...
This was our first duck hunt, no big sister, no mom, just a little blonde girl and her daddy.  Armed with a pink Red Ryder, Leah exuded an excitement like no other.  We settled in, discussed proper firearm handling, and began to wait.

In the midst of some conversation, target practice on an unfortunate hen mallard decoy, and the always important sharing of a candy bar, a single drake bufflehead entered plain view and made an unfortunate turn into the wind to visit our spread.  With clearance to shoot, I popped up and dispatched the duck without hesitation.  As I looked down to my youngest, she grinned and bestowed upon me one immense honor, "good shot Daddy".

The remainder of our short hunt consisted of working on the blind, target practice with the BB gun, inspection of the bufflehead which had "rainbow colors through the black on the head", and general duck blind talk.  No more ducks dared visit the spread, but that's fine simply because we had a blast.

Top notch day, I couldn't have been any happier...

My wife has always said that our youngest would be the hunter, whereas our oldest is very content with just fishing.  I figure that I'll support their decision in what they choose to do in the great outdoors, but I'm very pleased that my little beauty thoroughly enjoyed her few hours "gunning" with her daddy.  She also hit that poor decoy about ten times, I've got a sniper on my hands.

Have a great day,

The Downeast Duck Hunter

Thursday, November 22, 2012

One Bufflehead... Two.... Three... Happy Thanksgiving All...

I've been battling a nasty cold and trying to chase the almighty buck, but the one I missed bow hunting still manages to be around only when I'm not.  With several days of the wrong wind and a Thanksgiving break, I've chosen to let the forest and my body rest.  However, one can not let opportunity knock and not answer that door.

The small spread set out for an ebb tide.

Rather than capitalize on some sleep, I ended up with the almighty stupid cat who opted to let me know that morning was here and he was hungry.  After feeding said moron and brewing up a cup of Breakfast Blend, I couldn't help but watch the sunrise overlooking a high but ebbing tide.  Translation... I could walk 75 feet down to the shore, put out some bufflehead decoys, and try for an hour or so until the tide pushed too far out.  So I did...

I watched several diving groups further out in deeper water, but eventually things went my way.  The first one came in alone and hit the landing zone.  Just after the shot, I scurried up to the house grabbed my daughter's new kayak and carried it down the to beach.

 Within twenty more minutes, I ended up with another...

And shortly thereafter, I ended up with the third... I called it quits after that..

Aside of a beautiful morning and waking up my wife with a little bit of gunfire, I'm appreciative of the life I live and thankful for the blessings granted.  For that, have a great Thanksgiving.  I intend to get out in a couple of hours with my dad to pursue the almighty black duck, then we'll tackle the turkey.

Take care,

The Downeast Duck Hunter

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Triple Threat: The Kelley Kids

Getting a buck is a big thing in my neck of the woods and what I'm about to share certainly is worth mentioning especially when three siblings can all tell their deer story around the table...

That's right... Caleb age 17, Osmond age 14, and Lexi age 11 are three of a kind... a triple threat if you will.  Let's get to the details... Here are the accounts of all three Kelley kid's deer including an extra for their dad.  Enjoy!!!

For a previous guest post from Caleb, feel free to check out Gear Review: Berkley Havoc Baits

Caleb commenting on his father's deer-

November 9th

My dad and I woke up bright and early in hopes to see a buck. We headed out to a field where I have had very good luck and put out some Tinks 69 & slipped into the ground blind. We were there for only 30 minutes before we saw our first deer- two fawns came running out in the field. I knew something was up when a nice doe stepped out and started to feed.

They fed for about ten minutes before they took off running right out at us. I looked over at dad and told him something was up. That no sooner left my mouth when a nice 7 point came running out with his nose down.

We only had one gun so I reached for it. Dad then grabbed the gun from me and said "this is my deer".  He then picked up my .243 and took aim.  He shot and hit his buck in the neck. The buck never even kicked his leg once. Once the smoke cleared, I asked dad why he didn’t let me shoot and he said that you will have your chance at a bigger buck. I had no idea that he would be right on this.

Caleb Kelley-

November 10th

I decided that I was going to walk this afternoon. The wind was blowing SW about 10 mph. I took off with the wind in my face and jumped several doe feeding, but saw no bucks.

I only had 20 minutes of shooting hours left so I decided to head back to camp. The wind was now blowing my scent to where I was going, so I didn't expect to see a thing.

To my surprise I saw a huge doe feeding near a field. I decided to sit and watch.  I blew on my doe bleat, then blew on my grunt call twice. I heard something running through the woods coming towards me...

My heart jumped when I saw a nice 8 point step out. I slowly took the safety off my .243 and aimed behind his forward shoulder. I slowly squeezed and he dropped in his tracks.  I quickly jumped up and ran up to my buck. I looked him all over and called my dad to come help me drag him out. He went 180 pounds and is the biggest deer I have shot yet.

Caleb with his monster and his father, Derrick with a fair sized buck

Lexi Kelley-

October 27th

Dad and I hunted hard all morning to only see 4 doe. We went back to camp and made up a game plan on the afternoon hunt. We thought we would try and walk up on a buck feeding in the field. It seemed we walked miles before we got there. We finally made it to the field.

Dad said to slowly peak up over the hill to see if there was anything out.  So, I slowly looked over the hill to see a nice 4 point standing 100 yards in front of me. I quickly sat down and told dad that he was out. He said, "okay, get your gun rested on that stump and wait for a good shot".

The deer seemed to not want to turn broadside for me. But then he finally swung. I took aim and squeezed the trigger, but however the gun never went off. I looked at dad and said it wouldn't shoot.

He quickly said, "jack another shell in". I did so and took aim, again. The deer started to walk off when I was about to shoot. Dad barked and the deer stopped in his tracks. I then counted 1, 2, 3 and squeezed. The buck ran 400 yards before he fell and died. I shot him with my brothers rifle.

I was so proud with my first deer. Not many 11 year old girls can say that they have shot a buck like I can.

Lexi with her nice buck

Osmond Kelley aka Ozzy-

November 12th

It was the afternoon and it was getting dark around 3:30 and I had 4 deer out, so I at least had something to watch. I didn’t know one thing and they took off, so I didn’t think anything of it.  About 20 minutes later a deer popped out and at first i didn’t see the horns.

I brought up the gun and it started to walk towards me. Then it stopped!  I saw horns, took it off safety, and shot. Its front legs folded up and its back legs was kicking up grass. At first I thought I shot its front leg, but I got him behind the forward shoulder.

Last but not least, Osmond with a fine young buck

I would like to congratulate these siblings on producing three very fine deer to adjoin their dad's nice buck.  They all are great kids and certainly have an innate passion for hunting and the great outdoors.  I also would like to thank their mom, Trisha Alley for allowing me to share in this remarkable story and encourage her kids to offer their own write ups on my website.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Take that Trey Luckie...

There will be plans to target some ducks and bucks this upcoming long weekend, but in the midst of a storm filled long work week I felt compelled to share in my good fortunes against a said Trey Luckie of Brave Eagles Hunt with Antique Brownings in fantasy football...  Be ready Sellers of Ducks, Dogs, and Downriggers because you are next this weekend...

My season might be over, but I'm dragging some high fliers down with me...

Have a great weekend,

The Downeast Duck Hunter

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Matt Diesel and the Duckman 11/3/2012

Duckpower was originally established on the basis of sea duck hunting and the awesome members that made dropping eiders look so good. Lately, one member has opted to neglect his duties and avoid any official shoot. This one is for you Rabid, the one who forgot the power behind the sea duck...

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Rematch...

My fantasy league hasn't been very good to me...

Hakeem Nicks of the NY Giants has been out most of the season, Aaron Hernandez of my beloved Patriots has missed a ton of games, and for some reason I'm getting severely pounded.  With a terrible 1-6-1 record in the Reach East Conference, I've scored 700 points in 8 games but my opponents have so willingly cranked out 791 during that same tenure.  The league average is 89 points per game, my average is 88 points per game, but my opponents average 99 points against me.  Ughhhhhhh....

Anyways, this weekend presents itself with an opportunity.  To avenge my early season loss to Trey Luckie of team Georgia Brave Eagle.  He's done well his rookie season and currently sits at the top of Reach East but lately he's slid from his dominant perch aloof the entire league.  I intend to help speed up his free fall upon demise and thoroughly whip his team into obscurity.

Trey is averaging 95 points per game, but so conveniently has witnessed his opponents average a paltry 79 points per game.  That's 20 points less per game average than what I am delivered.

Albeit the struggle of the team formerly known as the Harbor Hogs, Team Suck Ass certainly has been in the midst of some good battles but has come up short more times than not.  For that, I intend to continue my good run stemming from a tie with the top team in Reach West managed by another rookie guru, Pistol Pete.  My curse is over and I eagerly await also whipping Willie B. Hardegin run by fellow blogger K. Sellers of Ducks, Dogs, and Downriggers.

At least I'm 4-4 in my other league and favored to win this week... at least I hope...

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